Allaiter ou biberonner : arrêtons de culpabiliser ! - Élhée

Breastfeed or bottle-feed: let's stop feeling guilty!

SUMMARY :

When your child is born (and even before), you are faced with many choices. Choosing between breastfeeding and bottle feeding is one of them, from the very first moments. Subject to intense debate, this question, as intimate as it is, combines personal history, social pressure, contradictory injunctions and judgments, too often forgetting what really matters: the happiness of the mother and her child. Indeed, feeding your baby also means cultivating a strong and fulfilling family bond, regardless of the method chosen. So, breastfeed or bottle feed? Above all, express your love without feeling guilty.

Breast or bottle, why is the subject so divisive?

The benefits of breast milk are real and can no longer be disproven. Easy to digest, rich in nutrients, adapted to the needs of babies according to their age... Breastfeeding is also at the origin of a unique intimacy and symbiosis between the mother and her infant. But breastfeeding is also described as painful and restrictive , formidable for the chest, very tiring and not always sufficiently nourishing for the child.

For its part, the bottle allows you to know the exact quantity of milk drunk by the baby, to benefit from a more regular feeding/sleeping rhythm and to implement shared breastfeeding between the two parents. However, it is criticized for being too often made from plastic and for using powdered milk that is still often criticized and expensive.

While there are advantages and disadvantages in both cases, after decades of praising the bottle, the ball has passed to the other side. In recent years, the glorification of the nursing breast has been on the rise again. Even before leaving the maternity ward, mothers are asked to make a choice . A decision that many report as not being as free and respected as that.

Bottle-feeding with tenderness: a dance of shared emotions

Sharing a bottle means both feeding your baby and nourishing his sensory experience . A tender alternative to breastfeeding, the bottle combines infant milk or breast milk, maternal love and paternal love. Thanks to it, the whole family, from brothers and sisters to grandparents, can take part in the intimate and bonding moment that is baby's meal.

give a bottle of infant milk or breast milk to your child

How many fathers discover their newborn and his little expressions during the first bottles? How many then feel the power of the father-child relationship ? From these first exchanges are born the notions of sharing, support and responsibility which shape family life, for three.

However, while the French Ministry of Health recommends - like the WHO - exclusive breastfeeding for a period of 6 months, many people denounce the bottle, above all as a comfortable choice for the mother.

Breastfeeding in symbiosis: an embrace of passionate love

Breastfeeding your child is like an incredible sensory journey during which intimacy and connection are established as naturally and instinctively as possible. Softness from skin to skin, looks, smells, caresses and whispers, breastfeeding is an intimate and positive experience, well beyond the nutritional benefits for the newborn and the benefits for the mother .

At the same time, breastfeeding can be a real challenge. Lack of milk, positioning of the baby, broken nights, mother's diet, breastfeeding in public... Some even call it anti-feminist.

Breastfeed or bottle-feed: break the chains of guilt

“Are you going to breastfeed? » at home, or “Are you going to breastfeed him?” » in the maternity ward, the question is on everyone's lips. “Breastfeeding is better for your baby. » “You should breastfeed him instead, it’s so convenient.” » “Babies prefer breast milk. » "What do you mean you can't get him to breastfeed?" » “Why, you don’t like breastfeeding?” »

breastfeed your child in accordance with yourself

It's true, breastfeeding can be practical and even economical, pleasant, easy or even magical, but above all, it must be your choice .

The baby bottle, for its part, has in turn been seen as an object of liberation for women, capable of giving them back the freedom of their body and their time, then as a dangerous object, containing microplastics. Infant milk has also long been criticized for its poor quality.

Today, freer speech around subjects such as birth, childbirth, postpartum and breastfeeding allows new mothers to make their choices and assume them more easily . The quality of powdered milk has increased, while Élhée has chosen to develop a healthy and sensory baby bottle, a unique combination of sensitivity and safety.

However, all these (op)asked questions have led mothers and parents to doubt their own judgment and many mothers have seen their self-confidence erode. A painful situation which still leads today to sudden, often difficult breastfeeding and to mothers' growing guilt over their babies.

What if kindness was the key? What if listening only to yourself and your instincts could alleviate doubt and guilt? Let us have no doubt that each parent above all nourishes their child with their love and that they always do so more freely by being soothed.

Society and motherhood, the weight of shame

Society's view of mothers and motherhood can be demanding and overwhelming. Idealized expectations often surround the new mother , particularly regarding breastfeeding, sometimes presented as the ultimate means of showing love, care and devotion.

This pressure, exerted in the form of recommendations, advice, opinions and sometimes criticism , creates a gap between the imagination and the practice of breastfeeding. Is breastfeeding presented as simple and natural? However, it is normal and common to experience difficulties with feeding, fatigue or expressing milk. A situation that risks generating shame and guilt at any time, particularly among mothers for whom breastfeeding is not a smooth ride.

Because every family is unique, the choice to breastfeed or bottle-feed is an intimate and personal decision that should never be influenced.

The breast war

Society still too often opposes the image of the mother devoted to her children, to that of the liberated woman who lives selfishly, the maternal breast to the carnal breast . A conflict which particularly echoes the choice or not to breastfeed. Those who opt for the bottle may be criticized for prioritizing their image (breastfeeding can damage the breast), their attractiveness and their freedom, over the well-being of their child.

Maternal well-being and child well-being, too often opposed

While breastfeeding has many physiological benefits for both the mother and her child, psychologically, breastfeeding can also be a source of stress . Fear of doing wrong, fear that the child won't get enough milk, won't gain enough weight, lack of time...

Breastfeeding should always be a moment of gentleness and sharing between a mother and her baby. If it causes anxiety or suffering, then the bottle may be more appropriate. Especially since the breast pump allows you to continue giving your breast milk even if you have chosen to bottle feed .

Too often women are asked to become mothers as soon as their child is born. However, motherhood becomes tame and anyone who gives their opinion on the young mother's choice to breastfeed or bottle-feed is intruding into her privacy, without always being authorized to do so.

Follow your instinct and aim for harmony

Beyond external opinions, it is essential to take the time to think, feel, listen to yourself and recognize your needs. When it comes to feeding your baby, the emotional parent-baby connection is essential and just as strong with a bottle as it is with breastfeeding .

Respect women and listen to mothers

At the heart of the debate between breastfeeding and bottle feeding and choosing the best option for newborns, it is essential not to forget mothers. The decision to breastfeed should never be made under influence, while the choice of bottle should never be considered as an easy solution or detachment from your child.

On the contrary, respecting your own choice amounts to showing kindness towards yourself and towards your baby. Because the main thing is the love and attention that a mother gives to her child, regardless of the chosen feeding method.

Make the best choice for the baby and his mother

favor the joy of feeding your child, from the breast or bottle

In 2016, the Department of Psychology at the University of Liverpool carried out a study of 845 mothers of children aged up to 26 weeks, focusing on maternal feelings about breastfeeding and mixed breastfeeding. baby bottle: 15% of respondents said they felt guilty about their choice, 38% felt stigmatized by it and 54.5% felt the need to justify it.

A complex situation which clearly demonstrates the importance for the mother to benefit from a free and respected choice. The only one likely to be lived well.

Do you want to start by breastfeeding and then we'll see? Do you dream of prolonged breastfeeding? Are you interested in mixed breastfeeding? For you, will it be a bottle from birth, or just after the welcome feed?

Your choice is and will remain the right one. If you live it well, your child will live it well too. Remember that babies are sponges. A radiant and calm mother is therefore much more beneficial to them than a stressed mother, whether she breastfeeds or bottle-feeds .

Choosing a breastfeeding bottle for your child

At Élhée, we have chosen to promote maternity and, more broadly , free and uninhibited parenting .

elhee nursing bottle

At a time when bottle-feeding your baby is not yet a trivial act, we have imagined and developed a bottle that every parent can use without fear and with pride , in parallel or not, with breastfeeding their child.

Healthy , the Round Bib is made from medical grade silicone, without chemical compounds and without microplastics. Almost as supple and soft as mother's breast , the Round Bib offers a unique peach skin feel. Equipped with physiological and anti-colic teats with slow, medium or fast flow, the Round Bib adapts to babies' palates and appetites. Iconic , our breastfeeding bottle accompanies your family in their daily life and in their choices.

As a relay for breastfeeding, to soften the weaning period, to practice mixed breastfeeding for two, because you are expressing your milk or simply to bottle-feed your newborn, the Élhée Round Bib is by nature designed as a ode to the parent-child relationship.

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