Breastfeeding is lonely

Or rather they force their mums to be.
This is probably the aspect of having a baby I find hardest to deal with. That you can’t get involved in things you’d like to because you have to feed the baby, because the baby needs a nap or worst because the baby is crying.
I am finding this particularly hard on this holiday.
Every evening the adults have dinner together after the toddlers have gone to bed. My littlest one is 10 weeks old and doesn’t yet settle in her cot well in the evening so I have sat with her in my arms each night eating dinner with one hand. That I can cope with. But at a certain point in the evening I know I have to get up and leave before everyone else because I will have to get up early to feed the baby. So I leave everyone there including my husband having a laugh, drinking nice wine, chatting, having adult conversation which I don’t get much of an opportunity to have anyway and I go upstairs where I can still hear them. I then sit by myself for another hour at least while I feed her and try to settle her. At which point my husband comes up, gets into bed and goes to sleep. Except that he has spent the last hour or so in an enjoyable way and I haven’t. And why the he’ll shouldn’t he? If I had the choice I know where I’d rather be.
This afternoon was even more upsetting. I had to feed the baby so went up to our room and as I was trying to burp her mid feed I could hear all this laughter from outside. I looked out the window to see all my friends, the kids and my husband and son organising a race down the lane for the toddlers. They were out in the sunshine having really nice holiday moments and I was stuck inside in the dark. I didn’t get to see my son doing something new and fun for him. I missed out.
I love my daughter and I am glad I made the choice to feed her myself but sometimes breastfeeding sucks (excuse the pun…).

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6 Responses to Breastfeeding is lonely

  1. Karla says:

    Oh, I remember that isolation! I was stuck in no-man’s land too. I loved being with my baby and breastfeeding was a great choice for our family, but I often resented being left out. The good news is that soon it will be your turn to have all the fun. Soon enough, too fast in fact, your baby will be a toddler and then it will be daddy’s turn to take over some of the parenting duties while you go out with your mommy-friends for a dinner party.
    But my suggestion to you is to take your baby on the go! The Ergo carrier is my favorite piece of equipment and allows you to breastfeed discreetly in public. See the picture here:
    I have a Maya wrap too, which is a basic sling, that also lets you nurse in public:
    Still, if I remember correctly, it was sometimes hard to get my baby to settle down for nursing if there was too much action going on around him. If that’s the case for you too, and you have no choice but to isolate yourself, maybe Daddy can keep this in mind and just sit next to you or pop in and bring you a glass of water.
    Well, no matter what, I wish you the best in managing this phase!

    • londonmum says:

      Thank you so much for your comment. It is nice to know that other people understand what it feels like. Most of the time it is fine and I do feed her in public but you are right that sometimes she needs some peace and quiet. My husband is pretty good and does check in but there is not much he can do and he also needs to look after our toddler. I guess I just wish that breastfeeding didn’t mean that it is always me that has to do it!! 🙂

  2. Suzanne says:

    Do NOT let it keep you away from the fun! I just got back from beach vacation with my two best friends from high school plus one of their husbands and they ALL saw me nurse the baby sitting right on the couch with a glass of wine. I did feel her upstairs in the quiet a few times a day too, but I’ll be damned if I was spending my whole lovely vacation in the dark.

    Do you need a nursing cover? I will send you one! The carriers your friend mentioned above are good too.

    But also, I know exactly what you are going through. I missed SO MUCH FUN with my first baby because he insisted on nursing in quiet places. He wouldn’t even eat at breastfeeding group when everyone else was feeding their babies! You have my sympathy and my admiration for sticking with it even though it’s hard.

    • This sounds familiar. My bonkers boy went through a phase when he would only feed if there were no distractions. No tv, no other people around. It was not fun for me, especially in the early days when he would sometimes take 40 minutes to an hour.

      A nursing shawl proved to be very helpful. I wished I’d discovered that earlier.

      But looking back on it, it was a relatively short time in both our lives, and I’m still glad I did it.

  3. mummykimmy says:

    Well done you. You’re doing an amazing thing for your baby and you’re being totally selfless into the bargain. I’ve been there and it does suck. But soon it bites – and that hurts like hell. 😉

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