How I'm {just barely} Surviving Life Exclusively Expressing

So - long story short, I started off breastfeeding our Little Man. At about 3 months old introduced the dream feed bottle of EBM and after a week of that it was like he just decided he was finished with the boob and only wanted bottles. This was 5 long weeks ago. I persisted with breastfeeding, with not much luck and have been exclusively expressing milk for him ever since. He is a fussy, stubborn, hungry and demanding BOY!!

As you can imagine, this changes our lifestyle somewhat, as expressing is really time consuming - and I really wish I had of researched into it a bit more before I started and committed to it (e.g. should have bought a double, portable pump with fitted bra). Because it feels like once you go down this path, it's very difficult to go back. I'm certainly not opposed to formula feeding, but I plan to express for as long as I can - and gradually introduce formula when we need to. I figure, every bottle of EBM is doing him good.

As I wrote {here} Miss M is in the preschool room at her local child care centre and goes there twice a week - which has been beneficial to everyone, but especially with my expressing. It means if Little Man is asleep on those days I can express uninterrupted and get a good stash over a few sittings. I always get up early to express first thing - about half an hour before James goes to work. This means he can run around after the kids and I can get more than his first bottle of the day. It can be sooo hard to get up before I technically need to.

Luckily, Miss M is pretty good at entertaining herself - especially if I've put some activities out for her. Yesterday it was a rainbow rice tea party with play dough! I'll always express when Little Man is asleep. Other jobs just have to wait.

As soon as James is home - that's another expressing session. And one more before I go to bed. Little Man has a little bit of formula mixed in with his overnight bottles {expressing overnight was where I drew the line!}. And then it all starts again the next day!!

The other thing that's really hard is when we think he's hungry, heat up a bottle, but he actually doesn't want it - he just wants to go to sleep. It's so frustrating tipping it down the drain. I also now have to plan my outings more carefully considering feeding times and bringing bottles with us.

Well now that I've had a whinge, it's time to look at the positives... James can share the feeding job. Little Man is still getting the benefits of breastmilk. We can see how much he's had and therefore have a better idea when he's hungry or not. We can go out for date nights because he'll take a bottle {plus I can go out by myself or with Miss M} and it's a great excuse to sit and catch up on some TV.

Now for more EBM info such as storing and heating guidelines - visit the ABA here. I'm certainly no expert, and as ever these are our personal choices and decisions we have made for what we believe is best for our family. I understand that everyone is different! I believe FED is best :)

So wish me luck as I keep walking down this path.
Lauren xx

Linking with Jess


  1. Expressing is really hard work, you are doing a great job keeping it up. I expressed for both of my boys, initially while they were in hospital (6 and 4 weeks respectively) and then up until they were around 10 months old as a supplement to b'feeding as they just didn't want to put weight on properly! I started off with a single pump with our first, bought a second single pump for our second so I could double pump and am now planning to buy a double pump for our third - it's soooo worth it!

  2. You are very courageous. If my babies had been relying on me expressing they would have starved. I was never successful at expressing. And I only managed to breastfeed one of mine to the desired goal of 12 months. You what? They'll turn out just fine no matter how you feed them. I now know that having a sane mother is way more important.

  3. Good luck with it Lauren! I expressed for a little while as my youngest wasn't gaining weight (we ended up having to move to formula) and it was a lot harder than straight breastfeeding. But you are so lucky to still have the opportunity to give him a great start with your breast milk - you can do it!

  4. All the best with it, Lauren - it's tough work - I wish I had a double pump at the time too, but of course the store didn't have them in stock and we were literally on our way home from the hospital with Miss L so couldn't wait around!

  5. You're doing a wonderful job ��

  6. I started expressing so her dad could do one feed a day and I have to admit seeing how much she was drinking did make feel a lot better. Prior to that I thought I didn't have enough supply. It turns out she wasn't gaining due to her allergies not my supply. I applaud you for still expressing and keeping up the breast milk when it would be so easy to give up.

  7. Thank you all so much for your kind and positive words. Will keep persisting with it. One bottle at a time, one day at a time xx

  8. You're doing great Lauren! I am an expert breastfeeder (still going with my third child who is 21 months) but was just awful at expressing so I am hugely impressed with your commitment to the cause!

  9. Best of luck! I exclusively expressed for 3 months due to a refluxer who responded better to the bottle than he did to me. I had to give it up for formula after that due to his allergies. All the kudos to you - it's a hard job :D

  10. Well done. I couldn't express long term I don't think. I did it for a few weeks when my youngest weaned suddenly, because I was hopeful she would go back, but then I stopped. It was just too hard. :(


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