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Ep. 86- Bottle-feeding Myths

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This is Maureen Farrell and Heather ONeal and this is The Milk Minute. We’re midwives and lactation professionals bringing you the most up-to-date evidence for all things lactation. So you can feel more confident about feeding your baby, body positivity, relationships, and mental health. Plus, we laugh a little or a lot along the way.

So join us for another episode. Hi everybody. Hello. Welcome to the Milk Minute Podcast. Maureen was just telling me about her vaginal discharge so you’re just in time. I was, I was just saying that my baby is seven months old now and I feel like I’m ovulating. So such a midwife thing to know. I think I’m probably going to get my period back soon.

Yeah. Well, whenever you see that slippery little snail trail, it’s a pretty good indication. Yeah. It just feels a little bit different for the past couple of days. So wrap your tools, everyone. Anyway, my vaginal discharge aside, today we’re talking about something that has nothing to do with that. Oh, sorry.

I wanted to talk about some more myths. But today about bottle feeding myths and not breastfeeding myths. Bottle feeding for breast milk or bottle feeding in general? Kind of both. So I tried to pick myths that were sort of ubiquitous whether or not it’s formula or breast milk, and that people just love to repeat regardless, but typically things that people like to say to you when they’re like, maybe you should just pump and bottle feed?

Yeah. Or is this like when you are at a cafe and you look over and you see somebody feeding eight ounces of breast milk in a bottle and you’re like, is that what I should be doing? Anyway, so we’re going to get into it today a little bit, but before we do that. Today’s question is from Kelsey Conklin. She says, hi, is there anyone that went back to work and only breastfed in the morning and evening before bed and used formula to feed baby while at daycare?

Not sure if that schedule is even possible or if I would start to dry up. My supply has been struggling since pumping back at work and we need to supplement with formula anyways. So I’m wondering if it’s easier or even possible to switch to only am and PM feeds. So the answer to that is not straightforward.

Yes. A lot of people have done that and not had a problem with their supply, but for the most part, when I’ve seen that work it’s after six months or particularly after a year. Now can it work before then? Yes. Can I promise it’s going to work before then? No. And most often, if your baby is like 12 weeks old or four months old, if you don’t pump during the day and just formula feed during the day, we do see a steady decline in milk supply.

However, I don’t know you, I can’t predict what’s going to happen with your body. So it’s, it’s hard to say what to do next. And I guess the question is what’s your goal here and are you willing to take a certain risk with your milk supply? And are you willing if your milk supply does take a hit to do what you need to do to get it back to where it was?

Cause that’s going to take a little bit of work. It’s not impossible, but if you’re already having a little supply issue, I would venture to say it might be easier to toggle your milk supply right now than it would be later after you’ve already introduced formula. You know? So if it’s like, if money is also kind of an issue, why don’t we just spend three days getting your milk supply up and troubleshooting your pump?

You know, like don’t buy trouble if you don’t need it. But then again, if your milk is highly regulated and your baby’s a year old, go for it. Yeah. Switched to AM/ PM feeds. It just kind of depends on what your goals are. Yep. And unfortunately we just can’t, you can’t predict the future. But thanks for your question and feel free always to email us, if you would like your question or win or firsthand account read. Our email is

Maureen, did you know that my love language is deluxe size beauty products that I can squirrel away to my bathroom and rub on my body and smell good and feel like a million dollars? Oddly specific, but I actually did. Yeah. It’s a situation at my house and I’m not that ashamed of it. I’m proud of it. And I’m going to tell you today that I support Glossy Box.

Well lucky for you for your next birthday and probably for Christmas too, you’re going to get a beautifully wrapped, lovely little box containing five deluxe sized beauty products delivered directly to your doorstep from me from Glossy Box. Yeah, but how do you know that there are any good? It’s really going to be filled with five makeup, hair and skin products from top brands. And it’s different every month, right?

Yeah. It’s packaged with love by their in-house beauty experts and delivered to your doorstep every month. Oh my gosh. That just tickles me pink and I’m so excited about it. Well, if you guys at home want to try Glossy Box, you can get $10 off a three-month subscription by following the link in our show notes and join me in rubbing on all the creams and smelling all the smells and using all the best hair products.

So you use the link in our show notes to get your discount at Glossy Box today.

Okay. So let’s maybe hop into this a little bit. What do you think? Are you ready? Hop. Okay. Okay. Great. Bottle feeding. So let me just start out by saying, this is a personal choice. If you’re going to directly feed your baby from your body, if you’re going to pump and exclusively bottle feed, or if you’re going to do a mixture or whatever. I would argue that it’s a choiceless choice in our society sometimes.

So if you have work, you got to work and chances are pretty good unless your baby’s excellent with cups, you’re going to be bottle feeding. So maybe it’s a choiceless choice, either way this is what it is. Yeah. But I do want to start out with that because people love to think that it’s their fucking business and just tell you lots of interesting BS about it and why they think you should bottle feed. I’m so glad you’re bottle feeding, like way to take charge of your life. And you’re going to have so much more independence. 

Yeah. My husband, who is a staunch feminist, absolutely loves to rant about how like pumping is presented as this like very feminist like freeing thing when it’s really not. And it’s total bullshit. And just like, you can be as independent as you want while plugged into that wall. Right. When really like the most feminist thing would be to give people the opportunity to just like stay home and feed their babies if they want to. Yeah.

If they well, while maintaining their life. That’s the key, right. Anyway you can talk to Ivan about that if you’re curious, he has a lot to say. But in that vein, the first myth that I want to tackle is that bottle feeding is more convenient. Oh my, this one is such a good one. Haven’t you heard? Like, I think everybody has, has had some toxic person in their life just be like, why don’t you just give them a bottle? At least at night to give yourself a break. It’s more convenient for me. And you’re like, what? You’re not, wait. The at night thing is what kills me. Oh yeah. You have to get your ass out of bed to go get a bottle, warm it, and like wash it afterwards. And then a lot of times then you have to pump after.

And then what if your baby doesn’t take it all and then you’ve wasted some of it. It boggles my mind, how people think that is more convenient. Now, again, I’m not bashing bottle-feeding in this episode, but I’m being super real about it. That when I come home from this recording day, they’re going, there’s going to be a mountain of dishes from just feeding my baby.

Okay. There are, I have used two separate pumping situations while we’re out here. And then a hundred percent, my husband’s going to use like six bottles, like separate bottles, you know, while I’m gone. And oh, maybe he like used some of the milk in the freezer in the reusable containers that need to get washed.

And it is a dish disaster. It is a dish disaster. And then if you accidentally registered for more than one type of bottle, that you’re tired and trying to find the nipple that matches the ring that matches the bottle, then you’re like, is there not three pieces that goes together? No we use so many different kinds of bottles.

Cause I just bought like one or two of each that I was interested in wondering like what would my baby take? And she takes all of them, which is great. But then we have that problem where I’m like, oh no, so I have the glass base for the narrow nipple, and I can only find the wide nipple. And where is it? Did it fall behind the drying rack?

Like, or this one’s clean? Yeah, it’d be easier. Yep. Yeah. And that’s exactly what happens too. Like I know my husband and I would do the same thing, like looks at the bottles in the sink, looks at the bottles on the shelf that are clean and it’s like, this baby is crying. Am I going to wash a bottle? No, I am not.

No, I am not. Yeah. I just wonder how much actual time washing, storing, pumping, warming. Like how much additional time in addition to the feeding time, it actually is. How much that adds up over the course of a year. I mean, I’m going to tell you what though. When I get home, it’s going to take me at least 20 minutes to do all the dishes if not 30. Then it’s going to take me 10 minutes later after they’re all dry to put them away. And then this whole day that I’ve been gone, I’ll probably have spent, let’s see, I power pumped in the car on the way here. So that was about an hour total. And then I’ve already pumped twice that I’ve been here so that’s another 40 minutes and then I’m going to pump another time before I leave. So it’s like another 20 minutes and then I’m going to power pump on the way home. So like over three hours of my time, just for like daytime. You know, and then there were some people that are going to be like, yeah, but you could pump and do other things at the same time so it doesn’t count. 

Yes, it does. Yeah. It’s still work. It’s still work. It’s still inconvenient to me. And it still sucks that then I have to go home after all that and wash all that stuff. And then if you’re doing that in the middle of the night, too, I’m sorry, you’re not getting more sleep unless somebody else is doing that.

There’s research about that. That shows that if you are breastfeeding, you’re more likely to be woken up more frequently at night, but you are also more likely to get better quality sleep. So although your infant is waking you more, you’re getting better quality because you’re not actually, the speculation is you’re not standing up going to get a bottle.

You’re not as awake as you would be if you just rolled over to breastfeed. Even if your baby is in a crib, if you just get up, grab them and sit down, right? Yeah, exactly. The amount of time that you’re like up standing and like getting things ready is reduced. So that helps your asleep. Well, I mean, I think that rolls into our next myth really well.

Tell me. Is that a baby who drinks from a bottle is going to sleep longer and subsequently you get more sleep. So first of all, research has shown no link between sleep and how we feed our babies. So whether that is directly breastfeeding, whether it’s bottle-feeding expressed milk or bottle-feeding formula.

Babies just sleep when they do regardless. It’s developmental. What if you cram a bunch of cereal in their bottle and do a little crosscut tip of the nipple and then force feed them oatmeal? Then they’re going to throw up on you and wake you up in two hours from excessive gas. Yeah. Listen, some parents come to us and say, you know, when I give my baby a bottle before bed, instead of breastfeeding them, they sleep a little bit long.

And I’m not arguing with that. I’m just saying when we collect data from large amounts of people, the trend does not tell us that that works for everybody. Okay. And whether we do breast milk or formula, regardless of bottle or whatever, it doesn’t matter. Babies sleep the amount that they sleep. Okay. And if we are feeding expressed milk in bottles at night, like we said, you still have to get up, get the bottle, warm the bottle, and then most likely pump at night.

Unless your baby is much older, right? And also just as an aside and research is still pending on this one, but if you direct breastfeed at night, you’re more likely to pass on your melatonin in those first 12 weeks because babies can’t make their own melatonin until 12 weeks of age. So by direct breastfeeding you’re actually helping them get that melatonin. Not saying if you’re exclusively pumping that that’s never going to happen for your baby. It’s just, that is something we do know happens with direct breastfeeding. So if you’re looking for a solution to get your baby to sleep better quicker, it makes more sense to share your sleep hormone melatonin with them.

Yeah. And it just, I don’t know, I, for some reason, Americans are obsessed with their babies sleeping. It’s cause we’re busy. We got stuff to do. You got to wake up in the morning and go to boardrooms and dominate the world. Yeah. It just like, there are some other cultures that really push like sleep training, but really this is a super American thing.

Like your baby needs to cry it out and sleep through the night by six weeks. What? I would say that that’s one of the top questions that people ask you when you first emerge in society postpartum. How are they sleeping? Is it a good baby? Yeah. Do you have a good baby or have naughty baby who wakes up all night?

I know, and you’re just like, first of all, your baby voice makes me want to punch you in the nose. You poor thing. Oh, is she keeping you up all night? You poor thing. And yes, I am all about expressing empathy and sympathy for new parents who are not sleeping a lot. It sucks. I am still not sleeping a lot with a seven-month-old.

I get it. However, I think we do better to normalize that and say, oh, you know, yeah. Like I really understand. That’s very hard, you know, I, you know, remind them that it’s temporary. It will not be like that forever. And in the meantime, say, Hey, you know what? Like, do you think I could support you in getting a nap today?

How about I do the laundry while you nap? Is there something I can do to help you? Not just like sucks for you, you got a bad one. My baby, oh, and then they have to follow with a story. My baby was two days old. No, by eight weeks sleeping through the night. I’ll tell you what you gotta do. And then they give you their magic recipe for sleeping through the night.

And it’s probably wrong. It’s probably wrong. Whatever. Yeah, it just, I don’t know. I think having realistic expectations for parents serves them a lot better than to tell them lies. Yes. Even if you find to be true, they might just be true to you. Yeah. I mean, I’m, I’m just here, I’m coming out into this recording session after having a very sick infant who coughed herself awake probably every 20 minutes all night for the last three nights, you know, and like, yeah, did I think we were out of that waking pattern? Certainly. Then guess what? She got sick, who knows, like it could have been a growth spurt. It could have been some other thing. Right. It’s going to keep happening. Kids are like that, you know, and it’s okay. And we just need to accept that it’s going to happen, do our best to support parents through it.

If they want to sleep train, awesome. But like make sure we’re using like methods with good research, not just some random person you found on Instagram. Like. Yeah. Yeah. Okay. All right. What’s next? Okay. So next is that if we bottle feed and we know exactly how much baby eats, we will not have issues with weight gain.

Oh, oh yes. Oh, this one is deep. Yep. And really how many times have I had clients come to me, crying about having to exclusively pump and I’m like, I’m sorry, why are we pumping? And they’re like, oh, my baby’s doctor told me I should so that we could track how much they eat. This is where I guess weighted feeds come into play, which I also don’t love.

Which I don’t love, but also kind of like if you have a pediatrician that’s really digging their heels in and needs proof that your baby is adequate, I guess a weighted feed could be a good solution in that scenario. Let’s table weighted feeds for a minute. Let’s talk about them in a minute. I just want to start out by saying that tracking how much baby eats is no guarantee that we’re not going to face growth issues.

Okay. Because you can’t force a baby to eat more than they want to. Right. You can try, you can try. And they’re probably going to vomit it back up. It’s stressful also. Yes, by the way, like if you try to force feed a NICU baby, it’s very stressful. And actually the research shows that bottle feeding is much more stressful for NICU babies then breastfeeding. And when babies are stressed, all of the other important bodily functions that they’re supposed to be doing, like metabolizing food, exactly. Creating energy out of it and using that energy to grow. When you’re stressed, your GI system has blood directed away from it. Yeah.

Digestion shuts down. So we want to reduce stress while eating, and if bottle-feeding stresses your baby out and they’re perfectly happy to breastfeed, maybe considered that. I also want to say, like, it doesn’t matter how many ounces you put in a bottle. If your baby’s done, they’re done. You know, if they’re going to eat one and a half ounces, putting three ounces in a bottle doesn’t change that.

Yeah. I hate that. It is not good to the last drop. No, this is not a “finish your plate” scenario. This is like a, you, you should be bottle-feeding on demand by the way. Yeah. So that’s tough. And most of the time when we see weight gain issues for a newborn, it’s not necessarily because you’re not making enough milk.

You know, sometimes they aren’t transferring enough milk because they have a weak suck. They have poor oral functioning. Maybe they get too tired while they’re feeding. I mean, and these things don’t just get solved by bottle feeding. Sometimes it might kind of be like a band-aid if we’re making it easier for them to eat, they might eat more, but they might not. You know, and then we have factors like illness or gestational maturity to factor in.

I mean, there’s just, there’s a lot that goes into newborn growth. Yeah. I mean, think about, we just ate the exact same lunch. That’s going to hit us differently. Yup. Fact fact, I mean, of course we are mature. Our bodies are mature, but your metabolism can change. Babies metabolisms are different. 

Boys, statistically speaking have higher energy requirements. How they eat and metabolize can be different than the girl baby that you had the first time. So you also can’t compare one baby to another baby. So like, oh my daughter used to eat this much and my son, I’m trying to give him that much. And it’s just, he’s always hungry. That, I hate that one too.

Can I put that little blurb in there with this one? It’s when people are like, How much is he eating? And you’re like, first of all, why, why do you care? Like we’re at the grocery store. I ran into you and I haven’t seen you in years. Why are you asking me how much my baby eats? This what, like, why are we, I mean, and the problem is we have a culture of bottle feeding and that’s why we even have topics of conversation in the first place, you know. 

Like we would not be talking about how much your baby is eating if we didn’t have this prevailing culture of bottle feeding, because we wouldn’t know because they’d all be breastfeeding. Yeah. So when people approach you with those kinds of questions, feel free to not answer.

First of all, just be like, oh, she’s perfectly fine. Sometimes I like to answer with something that is not even close to anything to do with that question. Give me an example. Well, if you’re like, oh, how much are they eating? I’m like, well, she’s pooping really well. And they’re just like, what? She’s wetting adequate diapers.

So all good. And so, yeah. Or, or you’re like, you know what? I think she really likes the color yellow and they’re like, I’m sorry, that’s not satisfying to me. But now I realize how selfish I was in asking that. I mean, it’s just like, ’cause, I’m not gonna, I’m not going to answer that question nor am I going to take the time to tell you the problems in that question.

So I’m just going to tell you what I feel like telling you. So I don’t like any of that. And then I’m going to circle us back to weighted feeds because I said I would. Here’s my problem with weighted feeds and here’s why I like them. So my problem is that when we do a weighted feed in say a pediatric office, that is all we’re doing is we’re just seeing how much baby ate one time. And how much they ate in a new environment, possibly when their schedule is disrupted to get to that new place. So particularly if we have an older baby, who’s like four to six months and they’re like, whoa, what’s that over there while I give you nip lash? That’s probably not an accurate representation of a normal feed for them.

Okay. And then if we have a younger baby who has had their naps messed up in the car maybe all they want to do is feed at the office because they feel uncomfortable because the lights are really bright and it smells weird. Like we don’t even know, like, is that feed over? Are they just cluster feeding?

What’s a feed, you know, like, and time of day. Yeah. Like they it’s really, I try to remind people of this. It’s not what they got at that feeding it’s how much they got in a 24-hour period. Exactly. So when I want to use weighted feeds, I send a client home with their scale, with my scale, or their scale. And I have them do it from waking in the morning to going to sleep at night and just write it down and forget about it.

And don’t over analyze every number and then send me all those numbers and I can be the one to go through and be like, okay, here is our approximate total for a 12-hour period. And that gives us a much better and more accurate idea of whether or not we’re transferring enough milk. Yeah. And yes, could we do that while bottle feeding and just tracking how much baby ate that way?

Sure can. Is it going to solve all their weight gain issues? No. That makes me wonder, because I just bought that $1,200 Tanita scale for my office because I feel as if it’s an expectation that you have one and it’s not a bad idea to have one. I mean, first of all, it’s really freaking accurate and I like to get a weight on a baby and it’s not all weighted feeds.

And like, you’re going to have people coming back every couple of days for weight gain issues. It’s a really good idea to have. But I’m thinking like, I wonder if I could rent it out, not rent it, like charge for it, but like let them take it home for 12 hours and bring it back. I mean, honestly, Heather, I would get like two cheaper table scales.

Like the flat ones. I’ll have to send you the one I have. It’s good enough. Is it precisely accurate? No, but it’s easy to use and they can use it like on any changing table or whatever. And also if somebody drops it and breaks it, you’re like out 50 bucks and not, yeah, whatever that thing costs. A lot. Yeah. I was mostly like for that, a few failure to thrive babies that I’m going to be working with.

It would be so nice to make sure that it’s like, oh yeah. And we have a top-of-the-line scale so we can handle. Yeah. I think it’s still a good idea. But if you do want to be doing like weighted feeds as part of an overall assessment, and you might consider that. I like that idea way better. And it also gives parents a little, a little bit of autonomy, but with boundaries, because I see parents go crazy with weighing their babies constantly and constantly doing weighted feeds.

And you’re like, whoa, this isn’t even necessary. And if we’re doing that and because like, whatever intervention we’re doing isn’t working then like we have to reassess. Exactly. Yeah. Okay. Are you ready for another one? Number four? If you bottle-feed, it will automatically be easier to be separated from your baby and baby will have a better bond with their dad. 

Oh yeah. Or other parent. This one is really hard. I know this is a hard one to pick apart and that’s kind of why I picked it. Cause I was like, you know what? Myth episodes sometimes are a little short. We can take a little time to pick this apart. Right? So, let me just start out by saying, if your baby is used to getting bottles, will it be easier to leave them with somebody else and have them be fed by them?

Probably. However, we still have babies who have preference for their caregivers. A lot of people come to us saying either their babies will not take a bottle from anybody else, or they will only take a bottle from their dad or turns out when they leave them with, you know, Aunt Nancy for the day, actually, she doesn’t know how to bottle feed right. And then it also has nothing to do with separation anxiety. Yeah, that’s a good point with nine months, by the way, is when that starts. And you can say, we’re looking at six to 12 months there. Yeah. Nine months is hard core where it’s like, you try to take that baby from mom and they’re like, oh my God. 

Or classic, you go to the bathroom, you turn your back on them and they start crying and you see the little fingers coming under the door. You’re like, I’m literally still here, I’m just pooping. You couldn’t see my face and you freaked out. Right? So whether or not your baby is directly fed from your body or fed from a bottle is going to have nothing to do with that.

That happens whether we formula feed, whether we use human milk and it sticks around well into the toddler years. Yeah. Anyway. But bottle feeding your baby will not impact which parent they like more, just like breastfeeding won’t. Sorry. Like, you know, a lot of people think that if you feed your baby from your body, you’re going to have this special bond that they never have with their other parent.

You know what, for the first couple of months, yes. The burden is mostly on you with that child. However, they are going to grow. They’re going to be a separate person from you eventually, and that separate person might decide that they are obsessed with that other parent and want nothing to do with you except a fly by like booby every once in a while.

Yeah. I mean also the time that they are on the breast most of the time is pretty short in the scheme of things. You know what they also get plenty of? Bath time. Okay. If you’re a father that would like to be quote unquote successful at fatherhood, you don’t have to bottle-feed to prove that you’re good at being a dad.

You can give the baths; you can wash the pump parts. You can do tummy time. You can take them on walks. You can baby wear. You can, I mean, there are a bajillion other things that kids do day to day, that you could, even newborns, even newborns, even newborns. And what we have learned from our interview with Abigail, Abigail Tucker, Mom Genes, great book, is that really when we have a non-birthing parent, the burden is on them to put the time in, to change their brain chemistry so that they can be a better parent. The more you do, the more you bond. Right. And if all you do is bottle feed and nothing else, I don’t know, is that enough time? Who knows? Probably not. That’s almost like scheduled feedings and how they cause supply issues.

It’s like, if that’s the one way you’re participating, you don’t get to fly a flag and be like, look how amazing I am. I bottle fed. Like do some other stuff. Exactly. And, and I have to say like, if bottle feeding were the key to secure attachment with our parents, we would not be successful as a species.

Okay. Oh, because we have only been bottle-feeding for a very short amount of time in human evolutionary history. That’s a good point. Yeah. So, and while I acknowledge that for probably a large portion of time, we maybe did not have the father of babies necessarily having such a secure attachment with their offspring.

It is not like the advent of bottles and formula that created that. It is simply them spending more time and putting in more effort. Wow. Just being around, not being in the woods or off fighting wars, like literally just existing with your child has probably helped. Yeah. And yes, after all that, I will say, if your baby can take a bottle, it is easier to be separated from them, but you can syringe feed.

You can spoon-feed, you can cup feed if your baby is older than six months, who even cares about a bottle. Okay. So is it more convenient sometimes? Possibly. Does that mean you should do it? That’s up to you. Yeah. Just, just don’t do it under the pretense that like it’s going to create some magical bond.

Cause it’s not. Nope. Okay. Last one is going to be fun. All right. Number five, the fifth myth. This one I hear pressure about a lot is that you can bottle feed in public so you should do that. Oh, Maureen, you did it. You really did it now. I really have a headache. Listen, you having flashbacks? I just don’t know how to help anyone with this at this point. 

We did a nursing in public episode. Just to give you a little bit more in-depth advocacy for that, which you can find in the show notes. We’ll link it down there so you can get access to that episode. But at baseline, you can do whatever you want. You can breastfeed in public if that’s something you want to do. Please don’t disrupt your entire life and your entire breastfeeding journey because you think you can’t breastfeed in public.

You never know till you try. The reality is even, so it’s legal to do in this country. Just to be clear, even if it wasn’t, you could still do it and probably have no consequences because nobody’s going to prosecute you for feeding a baby. I mean, there might be social consequences. Like you make an old man at Cracker Barrel very uncomfortable.

Did we break the patriarchy again? Did you ruin his eggs? Poor guy in his country man breakfast. But it’s just like, I think when people make that suggestion, it is very ignorant because they don’t realize then if you’re telling a lactating parent that they should just bring a bottle when they go out in public they don’t realize you have to pump when you feed a bottle and they don’t realize that actually sounds like you’re shaming them, right? Like breastfeeding is dirty. So they’re like, yeah, just bring a bottle and then, oh, you just go to that bathroom and pump while your baby eats, I’ll feed them the bottle. Right. And you’re like, I’m sorry. Thank you. Thanks for causing that for me. That whole confusing situation, that could have been very easy.

Yeah. Now, if you want to bottle feed in public, instead of using your body to feed your baby, that’s fine. If it is personally more convenient for you, great. But it is not a suggestion we just give people Willy nilly. Yeah. This is not any of your business to tell people that they should bottle feed so they can do it in public so they won’t be stuck at home all the time. 

Oh, if you’re breastfeeding all the time, you’ll just be stuck at home. No, I won’t. I actually had a conversation with a friend about this who was stuck exclusively pumping for a while and she was just like, how do I leave with the baby? You know, she was bottle feeding and was just like, I, how do I even like bring milk and heat it and feed it?

It would be so much easier if I were to just back to the breast. That’s funny. Like she leaves the house just to breastfeed, but you know, like, yeah, that’s a lot of stuff to bring and, you know, I had to walk her through like, okay, here’s some options for taking cold milk out and warming it on the go and cleaning bottles on the go and cleaning pump parts on the go.

I mean, guys it’s a lot. Honestly, it’s a lot to formula feed in a bottle in public. Oh yeah. Yeah. Basically this isn’t us, I feel like this was more of us talking to people who feel compelled to give advice to people about bottle feeding. Honestly, I just, I feel like I just always want to step between the new parents and all the toxic people in their lives. And the Maureen boundaries.

And these myth-busting episodes are just that. That’s like, I don’t know you or your Aunt Karen, but if I did, I would just like put this episode between you guys. Yeah. Right. I hope this helps you guys. We really care about you. And we really want to make sure that every choice you make is supported and informed and that there is no shame attached to any of your decisions.

How can you feel shame if you’re informed and you’ve decided, and everybody’s fine? You are the only one who can decide if bottle feeding is more convenient for you. Okay. You are the only one who should be telling yourself to bottle feed. And you can stop bottle-feeding at any time. If you try it and then you’re like, as it turns out, this isn’t serving me, you can stop.

It’s not a one-way street. Oh. And you can do both. It’s like, it’s not like just bottle or breast. Like I do both. Heather did both with her kids. It’s totally possible. We can go into many more future episodes about that. Absolutely. I hope that helps you guys. Should we do an award? Oh yeah, I think I have one.

Hey guys, Heather here with a very special message for you. I wanted to let you know that if you’ve attempted to breastfeed your baby even once or begin pumping after an unexpected postpartum complication, you’ve taken the first step to a beautiful journey. I also want to let you know that you can breastfeed no matter what kind of labor you had, no matter what kind of baby you have, no matter what kind of job you have. There is a way to breastfeed that can work for you.

The thing that I really want to get across here is that the fear of what if I don’t have what it takes to breastfeed? What if people think I can’t do this? What if I fail? What if I can’t do my job? What if I’m not enough? Here’s the truth. Everyone has those thoughts, but some people push through and succeed at breastfeeding anyway.

So what’s the difference? Consistent support. Yeah. Consistent support is the linchpin in the breastfeeding plan. Having support available to help you through the natural hiccups of feeding your baby is essential to decreasing that anxiety and making those doubtful voices in your head disappear. 

Throughout the pandemic I’ve been accepting virtual, private lactation clients to meet people where they are, despite the crazy circumstances with COVID. At first, I honestly wasn’t sure how it would go, but as it turns out, it was better than ever. I’ve decided to continue doing virtual consults and help people all over the world. As an IBCLC, I hold an international certification and breastfeeding is a universal language.

If you find yourself needing that personal support and would like to work with me, one-on-one you can schedule at your convenience at my link in the show notes, or by going to Let’s get you to where you want to be with breastfeeding and start asking new questions.

What if I succeed? What if I can breastfeed and do my job? What if you are enough? What if it works? We got this.

This week, I want to give an award to one of our patrons. I’m going to give an award to Maya who is a new patron of ours, and she let us know that she is continuing to breastfeed her baby through the harrowing experience of having a breast abscess. She got mastitis a couple of weeks ago and is just trudging on through this journey.

It sounds really hard and we are super proud of you for moving forward in whatever way works for you. Maya that is rough. And I’m so glad you’re continuing to breastfeed through that. It’s actually really hard to stop breastfeeding when you have mastitis that bad, because you don’t want things to plug up even more and more infection to brew.

I hope that you are seeing a breast specialist that knows what they’re doing. If you don’t feel like you do, get somebody else. Yeah. And feel free to reach out to us again on Patreon. We would love to be there for you even if we don’t have advice, we at least have sympathy. And we just want to let you know that you’re not alone.

You’re not the only one to go through this experience. And yes, it is very difficult. So I look forward to seeing you in our live Q and A and checking up on how you’re doing. Yeah. And what award are we going to give Maya? Maya we’re going to give you the Obsessively Awesome Award. I hope that makes you laugh as much as it’s making us chuckle and you appreciate our pun.

Knee slapper. Anyway, puns can get you through the hard times for sure. Okay guys. Well, thank you once again, for tuning into The Milk Minute Podcast. The way we change this big system that is not set up for breastfeeding parents is by educating ourselves, our friends and our children. If you found value in this episode today, or any others, you should consider joining us on Patreon. For as little as $1 a month, you can access all kinds of extra perks, behind the scenes footage, exclusive merch, live Q and A’s all those good things.

If you don’t want to pay for it, you know what’s free? Sharing our episodes with a friend and we would greatly appreciate that. Thank you so much. Thanks and goodbye. Good. Bye.


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