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Love/Hate

Things I love about breastfeeding:

  • It's free.
  • No bottles/nipples to wash/sterilize/store/remember to pack in the diaper bag.
  • I never run out and have to drive send my husband to the store at 2 AM.
  • It is impossible to forget to take it with me. Things I have forgotten to take with me in the past week include diapers, wipes, sippy cups, hats, blankets, strollers, the newborn. (I remembered that last one pretty fast.) (Don't tell my husband, ok?)
  • At 3 AM, I can retrieve, nurse, burp and get the baby back to sleep without sitting up. I usually don't even bother to open my eyes.
  • "Gosh honey, I would love to make dinner/do the dishes/bathe the toddler/have wild monkey sex, but I have to nurse the baby. Bummer."
  • Actual, honest to god, almost-boobs and what could very nearly be mistaken for cleavage.
  • 500 calories a day, baby. Pass the Peeps.
  • You can't cry/scream/whine with a boob in your mouth.
  • Long-term health benefits to the infant, blah, blah, whateverpants.

Things I hate about breastfeeding:

  • You have got to be fucking kidding me. You just spent 90 minutes chomping on my boobs, you are not hungry again 10 minutes later.
  • Pumping. (Are you a pumper? Because seriously, my hat is off to you. I think I would rather never get more than an hour away from this kid than deal with pumping.)
  • Never getting more than an hour away from the kid.
  • Waking up again to nurse again while the husband is sleeping peacefully again. (Best solution to this problem: swift kick to the shins.)
  • THIS ECZEMA IS DRIVING ME INSANE AND NOBODY WILL GIVE ME DRUGS!
  • None of my shirts fit over my boobs. Oh, except the maternity shirts.
  • Nowhere to pass the buck at 3 AM, no matter how many times your eyes have literally popped out of your head from exhaustion.
  • Breast pads.
  • Sweaty breast pads. (I just started running again.)
  • People acting like you have a boob hanging out or something just because you have a boob hanging out.

Comments (49)

Let me be the first to tell you that you are INSANELY lucky with the breastfeeding. I had to feed both sides 10 minutes a piece, feed baby supplement bottle, put baby down to sleep, pump for an additional 10 minutes, clean the pumps, and then try to sleep for what was only 45 minutes till the next cycle started.

I am cracking up! I share all of the above as both my love/hates. My top love was the never forgetting to take it with you/streamlined diaper bag and my hate was the pumping (which I almost misspelled as pimping, lovely). I stayed home with Summer for the first year and she REFUSED to take a bottle so there was no pumping for her, but with Mila I went back to work after 2 months. I swore that if I never pumped 4 times daily/washed a pump daily/cleaned a gazillion bottles daily so long as I lived it would be too soon!

Oh, the love/hate of all things good/bad. I was laughing outloud!

As for the 90-minute-boob-chomping-only-to-want-more-boob-10-minutes-later, well, he's a guy. As he ages, the desire will change little, though the availability will be more complicated.

That last one kicks ass.

This is fun! And OH so true!!!

The only negative that I saw as a positive: I have to pump because I work and I actually do not mind pumping. I mean I hate it in the sense well MOO but it is nice to get a break at work every morning to sit and read a book/magazine and/or listen to NPR. I was actually sad to stop pumping because I had to give up the break part of it. Also, when I pumped at home my hands were tied. My husband had to take the baby and deal with him while I sat and watched TV. Finally, pumping was not so bad because dude I totally missed my calling/era as a wet nurse as well! I could pump like 20 oz in 10 minutes and still be so painfully full I wanted to cry... GAH.

Well, you've definitely given me somethings to look forward to and some things NOT too as well... thanks for the heads up

Well, you've definitely given me somethings to look forward to and some things NOT too as well... thanks for the heads up

Well, you've definitely given me somethings to look forward to and some things NOT too as well... thanks for the heads up

Wow! That brought it all back. Glad Amanda is 31!

Top ten reason I hate breastfeeding: (I love it for all the reasons you list.)
10. Pumping
9. Pumping
8. Pumping
7. Pumping
6. Pumping
5. Pumping
4. For the love of God, pumping
3. Pumping
2. Pumping
1. Yes, Virginia, PUMPING

(Why yes, my last one was a preemie who had to be bottlefed and I had to pump all the time and not nurse him, why do you ask?)

I totally hear you. I'm almost to month nine with my second and I am finally getting to be away for more than an hour at a time. I abhor pumping. But this time away from the baby thing makes me think about pumping. OK, done thinking. Because when I have free time in those first few months when the nursing demands are so urgent the last thing I want to do is pump. You will survive. And freedom will be all the more glorious, hallelujah, angels singing.

I plan to try to breast feed but I admit it scares the beejezuz out of me.

Cole must be talented, because he was STILL able to cry with a bottle or boob in his mouth.

And the pumping... *shudder* When I finally gave up trying to produce enough milk for my tiny eating machine, the only thing I didn't miss was the pumping. I still firmly believe that the stress I felt over pumping was a huge part of why my milk dried up. Well, that and genetics.

agreed on all accounts. love #10 on the hate list, too :)

"...swift kick to the shins."

Oh, how I wish I had thought of that at the time.

So true!

I pumped EXCLUSIVELY for 3 months because no matter how much we worked with the lactation specialist, the boy and I couldn't work it out. (I did manage to nurse for the first month, but not very well.)
Let me tell you how much that sucked. All the work, none of the rewards (for me)--you know, all that sweetness time where you cuddle the baby and marvel at the fact that he/she is being nurtured DIRECTLY from your body? Anyway, I am always envious of a successful BFer. You're very lucky.

"...swift kick to the shins."

Oh, how I wish I had thought of that at the time.

So true!

You're doing a great job!

Wow, that brought back memories.

I hear you.

I hear you.

Amen! And pumping sucks, there's just no way around that. Also, add to the hate list: plugged ducts.

But for all that, it still seems EASIER than bottles, doesn't it?

Weird.

Haha I especially like the last one Beth! Too funny. I have so much to eventually look forward to ;)

Pumping sucks. When my youngest was a wee lad, I arranged my teaching schedule so that I could go feed him myself at daycare.

Yes, I was a little nuts back then.

You speak the truth my friend. But, I was lucky enough to be the mother of the world's laziest nurser who decided that no matter how hungry he was, he'd rather use me as a 24 hour a day human pacifier yet still always be hungry. Becoming a full-time pumper and infrequent nurser was the best thing ever. Being a dairy cow is no fun, but the freedom I gained was worth it. All I needed was the pump, a laptop and the hands free pumping bra-you have one, right? It will CHANGE YOUR LIFE.

see if you can buy homemande oatmeal soap (made with lye, it's not as harsh as some believe) for the eczema.

I miss BF, I started to decrease at 4-5 months and dried up about a month ago; and, yeah, getting up for a bottle is the pits!

This is EXACTLY the list I need to print out and laminate in about 5 months as a third time mom, first time breastfeeder.

I can't wait to throw out all of my Dr. Brown's and all of their kerbillion weensy little parts!!

Oh god I hated pumping. One time I pumped about an ounce or so and chris KNOCKED it over. I was a weepy postpartum mess when I stuck the pump to his face and tried to suck his brain out through his eye.

I totally agree with the positives! Especially the no bottles part. BF makes traveling SO much easier! I do have to pump since I went back to work after 12 weeks. There are days that I want to throw the pump out the window but in all it's not awful. One other negative is random let down in the middle of the day...especially during meetings. Thank goodness for breast pads but sweaty breast pads, huh? Ick! I hadn't thought about that when making my plans to start working out again.

I have an honest question for you who agree with the horror that is pumping--I do not have children, but whenever I have some, I would like to breastfeed, but I will have to work, too. So, my question is: What is it that makes pumping so terrible? Is it the discomfort? The inconvenience? The futile nature of the act? I'm really curious, and I'd love to hear an answer from those who have gone through it. Thanks!

so I must be the odd ball...I don't HATE pumping...I mean there are times when I am like "jebus time to pump AGAIN"..but for the most part I am ok with it....(although it is a HUGE commitment)...and to amen your loves about breastfeeding..yes it is nearly impossible to cry or whine with a boob in your mouth! And it does drive me nuts that he will chomp on a boob for a hour and then be hungry 10 min later...really? How is that even possible????

What's even worse is when you have a boob hanging out and you aren't even breastfeeding. Or have a child.

This is the story of my college years.

Oh I have to second Laura...hands free pump or pumping bra is the BEST INVENTION EVER...I think it actually beats sliced bread!

But because I pump, I can appreciate more the moments when I can just nurse.

Also, in answer to Gaby: Pumping is not that bad. It can be time consuming, but I've worked out a schedule where I only pump twice, 15 minutes at a time, at work and sometimes once in the evenings if I need to get a bit more for feedings the next day. The worst part is that pumping gets less milk than a feeding baby so, since nursing is a supply/demand system, you need to stay on top of it to make sure that the reduced demand of pumping doesn't reduce your supply in turn.

Basically, I think about my boobs all day, every day. But I'm not sure that's different than regular nursing.

Great list! I'm in the midst of the same feelings.

Preach it!

While I think pumping is annoying, I do enjoy the beneficial aspect of having Bryan give him a bottle at 1:00 so I can sleep through a feeding. Makes it seem not so bad. But yeah, having the husband sleep next to you while you're up for the billionth time? Grounds for divorce. ESPECIALLY if he's snoring.

I have nothing to say. Just emphatically shaking my head in total agreement with everything you've said.

That last one? I laughed so hard I startled my child. NICE.

interestingly, I never pumped. I always (when needed) hand expressed. Money was tight when we started having babies, so an expensive pump (they were then) was at the bottom of my list, plus i heard lots of scary warnings about how pumps can damage your milk ducts etc.

What I hated was manageing to get to the point where I had an expressed feed in hand to start with - this was a pain-in-the-boob process of expressing at the end of feeds, any time he wasn't so hungry etc. Ugh. This was with number two when I went back to work (part time admittedly) after the first few weeks. The next two I had maternity leave for thank god, and in the case of number 3, we both lost interest in breast feeding around the time I needed to return (7/8mnths), with number 4 he lost interest around the same time, so I got him onto a bottle during the day as I was going back to work, and hoped to keep up breast feeding in the evening etc. Sadly, he couldn't be bothered after a week or two :(

This little girl, I'm not going back to work - yay! so I'm not worrying about bottles at all. She's still under performing on the weight charts, but as she eats like a gannet and is rolling all over the shop and trying to crawl (7mnths) I'm not that worried about her!

Calendula cream. Any all natural kind will do, really (although we used CA Baby). The Mini had eczema bad over Christmas. Like raw bad. Also, milk of magnesia. Rub it on. But if that's a no go, CA Baby, Weleda, as well as other organic skin care makers carry some form of it. CA Baby's calming lotion also works. Target might have these in the baby aisle, but I know for sure Whole Foods carries the line, as well as Weleda.

It beats my wife's pumping! The pump talked to her. It either said, "Blue Haired Llamas", or "Git r done" (and no, neither of us care for Larry the cable guy). She would always leave the nursery crying. Not fun.

Hopefully this one will be better. She just came home today with our baby girl!

I'm 8.5 months into breastfeeding my first. We gave her a bottle of pumped milk every day from day four and she *still* refused to drink from a bottle beginning at week eight. Even now she's iffy with it, and I work 30 hours a week. Loves to nurse, that baby. But it's me and only me in the middle of the night, as Mr. Bisous cannot nurse her, and she will NOT take a bottle in the middle of the night. Afterwards, I'm sure I'll feel it will be worth it, and that it was a short time of my precious one's life. But at month 8.5 of no consolidated sleep and 3/4 time job, I'm just a bit regretful.

I loathe pumping, too. It's hard to explain why it is so very loathesome. Maybe the fact that you have to get the milk out but you don't get to see the baby enjoy it? I don't know.

"People acting like you have a boob hanging out or something just because you have a boob hanging out."

heh heh heh heh

Beth,

I read these to myself and chuckled and then I read them to my MIL who is staying with us for a visit to help out with Felix and SHE laughed too.

I FEEL every single one of those...and more!

Does Own spontaneously forget that he's feeding DURING the time he's on the boob? There's nothing more awesome than being yelled at by your 3 week old for NOT giving him boob when the boob is like 3 INCHES away! (DUH!)....

Or how about the fact that Felix will NOT suck on the boobs unless I have a shield over my nipple (that look like tiny clear sombreros)...yay for tiny silicone plastic hats....During the first week I was so paranoid about losing my ONE and only shield that I went out and bought 4 more...now we have tiny Mexican hats ALL over the house. The fun never ends!

It would be kinda cool if we had long distance walkie talkies....hands free...then if we were both up at say...1:29...then 3:46 and then again at 5:10...we could all commiserate..:*)

Thank god they're so cute eh?

Very helpful to aspiring baby-makers like me. Bonus helpfulness if you could assign weighted values to each of the considerations you've listed. Or, you know, just leave me to figure it out for myself and go play with your kids. :)

Since Dex was so small/NICU blah blah, he never latched on and I only pumped.

I FUCKING HATED THAT FUCKING MACHINE MORE THAN FUCKING ANYTHING IN THE WHOLE FUCKING WORLD.

Oops, did I type that outloud?

I'm with you on every single one of those -- the good and the bad. 'Cept I can't even get maternity shirts over the jugs!!! ;) They are starting to shrink a little, though...THANK LORD!!!

i can so relate to all of that except I am forced to pump since I had to go back to work already - ugh. Pumping is the pits!! I too wish my shirts would fit - my wardrobe is VERY limited right now.

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