I have been very reluctant on writing a blog about not breastfeeding my twins. I knew I would get a lot of comments from “alpha mommas” about why I am formula feeding and why I wasn’t able to continue breastfeeding my twins. In fact, when people ask me if I’m breastfeeding my twins, I would shyly say no and somehow there is that look and energy given to me that is somehow saying “ You did not do your best as a mom” or “What kind of a mother are you?”. And honestly, it hurts and I feel like there is a bit of discrimination from breastfeeding moms towards formula feeding moms.
I am writing this blog not to encourage nor discourage formula feeding. I am writing this blog to represent and tell all mothers that not being able to breastfeed your babies does not make you less of a mother and you do not deserve to be looked down by other moms who actually have no idea why you opt to formula feed. I am a firm believer of the liquid gold and as much as I want to give my twins that, I belong to the other mom community of formula feeding.
I will be listing down all the questions I received about why I’m not breastfeeding and I will answer them respectfully because I feel like formula feeding moms are not well represented and we have been looked down for I believe for quite some time already.
WHY WERE YOU NOT ABLE TO GIVE BREASTMILK TO YOUR TWINS?
Actually, I was able to give pure BM to them for 3 weeks. Yep, only 3 weeks. I was so stressed physically and emotionally that my body just stopped producing milk. I tried so hard not to get stressed about everything happening but I’m telling you it was just impossible not to be stressed when you see your babies in the NICU so unwell and you are staying in the hospital close for a month.
DID YOU TRY TO PUMP EVERYDAY OR DID YOU TRY TO RELACTATE?
Yes and Yes. I pumped everyday every 3 hours. My twins were not yet allowed to latch and they didn’t know how to at that time too. I pumped in the hospital room everyday and religiously. But everyday it gets smaller and smaller until I no longer had even a small drip of milk. I tried to relactate too. Bought lactation cookies, ate malunggay and clam soup almost everyday, drank lots of water and sure there was little milk but it wasn’t enough for my twins. And eventually it stopped too since I didn’t have enough rest taking care of twins and the stress was still there due to my babies’ acid reflux situation.
YOU COULD’VE TRIED HARDER OR ATLEAST MIXED FEEDING, YOU KNOW?
I actually tried SO HARD. Believe me. But with twins, its a double portion of NO SLEEP, double portion of FEEDING and double portion of NO REST. Yes, I know there are some twin mothers who were able to breastfeed- good for them- but majority is on formula feeding because pushing yourself to breastfeed even though you know its quite taskful for you takes a toll on your health and MOMS are almost NOT ALLOWED to get sick.
ARE YOUR BABIES SICKLY AND SLOW BECAUSE THEY DID NOT HAVE BREASTMILK?
Big NO! My babies are growing fast and healthy. Formula milk are made for non-breastfed babies to still get the right nutrients and vitamins they need. Believe it or not, my babies are preemies but when they turned 2 months, they have been going outside in the malls ALREADY (usually in the mornings to avoid the crowd) and they never caught a flu and got sick. I just have a strict no touching and no kissing policy.
ISN’T IT COSTLY TO GIVE FORMULA MILK?
Ofcourse it is. My twins finish a 900g of milk for only 3-4 days. Yes, it eats up your budget. But baby’s gotta drink, you know. As parents, you do not have to think about the cost. Think about what your baby needs and what makes them healthy everyday.
WILL YOU ENCOURAGE MOMS TO FORMULA FEED THEIR BABIES?
As I said, I am a believer of the liquid gold. As much as possible, breastfeeding is ideal and best. But I wouldn’t look down on formula feeding as well. You know what’s best for YOU and your baby. I’m considering the moms health especially twin moms because pushing yourself beyond your limit would backfire on you and your baby. Breastmilk or Formulk milk, it doesn’t matter. As long as you are giving your best to your babies and you are doing the best you can to give them the right nutrients to keep them healthy.