I cried on the day I decided to stop latching and go for exclusive pumping. It wasn’t an easy decision. I felt guilty. It felt like I’d deprived my baby of the chance to latch on and drink the breastmilk which contains lots of nutrients. The bonding time for just the two of us seems to be snatched away.
The baby couldn’t latch properly and was way too impatient to be taught. The external stress and pressure from the family members was way too high, insisting that the baby wasn’t drinking enough and that it was difficult to gauge the amount of milk that the baby had drunk. On top of that, the breast infection that was caused by a crack in the nipple didn’t help much, which also resulted in a fever. I gave up.
But that wasn’t the end. As much as I had to give up on latching, the idea of providing breastmilk to my baby didn’t stop here. After all, if I were to exclusively pump and feed it to the baby using the milk bottle, she would still be drinking breastmilk, isn’t it? And isn’t that the most important thing? Which is for her to get all the nutrients from breastmilk?
So that’s what I did. Day and night, I read up online on anything related to exclusive pumping. I was determined to continue to provide breastmilk for my 2 weeks old baby then. And I wanted to see if anyone else did that. Surprisingly, there was, and quite a number too! That was about 2 months back.
Today, I’m still exclusively pumping though the milk supply wasn’t a lot. As a mother, I feel that I need to try my best to provide for my baby, and at the same time, not stressing myself too much. So, I’d come up with a theory: If the baby can latch, let the baby latch. Else, pump exclusively and feed the baby using a milk bottle. If all else failed, milk powder will be the last option. There’s always ways to make up for that “bonding time” or “nutrients”. The bottom line is, “Don’t give up!”, your baby still loves you even if you never breastfeed him/her.