Nursing Question

So, the baby's born, what comes next? Discuss your postpartum and parenting concerns here.
bellemama
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby bellemama » Wed Sep 13, 638305 5:25 pm

No Mommy guilt allowed! You get a gold star for pumping as long as you have.

With this baby, I went back to work when he was three months and pumped for two months after that. I'm lucky enough that he can come to the office for "lunch." Even so, we went to supplementing with bottles at about five months, when I could no longer keep up with his demand, just like you plan to do.

No matter if some people (not here) say that "every woman can exclusvely breastfeed if she really wants to," for me, pumping has never worked. It didn't work with my first preemie (I had to pump for 6 weeks before he could latch on) and it didn't work with this baby, either. Pumping, even with a hospital grade pump, just doesn't stimulate my breasts enough. And like you, I'm not crazy about bfing (hate that let-down feeling!).

So be gentle with yourself; you're not selfish. You're right, you don't have to make it an all or nothing. Pumping at work is incredibly difficult. I supplement with formula bottles (I use an organic formula because that makes me feel better and still nurse in the morning, and at night.

I think once you cut down on your feedings, and you stop pumping, you'll find that your breasts become much more manageable again (give it a week or so for things to stabilize). That's what happened for me, anyway. I will probably feed at night for a while longer, but that's just what works for me. I don't particularly enjoy bfing either, but it's fine when we have the time to relax together (like at bedtime) and my son clearly loves it still.

And if you still want to completely wean, then do it. Mommy does not equal Martyr. If you make a considered decision about what's right for your family (and yes, your stress level is an important consideration in that factor) then you're a good mom, not a selfish one.


melib
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby melib » Sat Sep 02, 638305 7:59 pm

Hi, just wanted to chime in on the running issue, and the body issue.
I am breastfeeding a preemie, and it has been a challenging 4 months so far. I am only now returning my hospital-grade pump, and we are still getting the hang of things. We've gone through formulas, pumping, bottles, the whole range of options. I am currently unemployed, and really, this is the only way I could handle breastfeeding right now and being able to exercise and feel like I have some 'control' over my body. I really understand what you are saying about juggling all of these things and not feeling like there is any room for yourself, as this is how I did things with my first son (I was in graduate school while breastfeeding him, and pumped at the university - it was crazy). I also competed in races while breastfeeding my first. Couldn't see doing that this time around though. I've learned that it is really not worth beating yourself up about the choices you need to make regarding feeding. Do what works and makes you the happiest, because this is what will make your relationship with your baby a happy one. It is ok to decide that breastfeeding is not working. It is also ok to make your own rules and do what works for you and your baby. So, less pumping is ok. Also, if it is really important to you to be able to work out (I know this is a sanity saving measure for me!), then you should find a way to make that work. I have a big chest too, and running while breastfeeding, much to my chagrin, is not easy or comfortable.
I wish you a lot of luck and peace with whatever you decide.

amym
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby amym » Thu Aug 31, 638305 3:15 pm

Just wanted to say on the leaking issue, I leaked until both of my daughters were 10 or 11 months old. I hate those stupid pads, too, but they saved most of my shirts from being ruined! The other thing is that while right now your chest is large, it may not be like that for long. I went from a C-D cup in the first few months of b-feeding to an A-B now! (And I still am b-feeding my 16-month-old a bit. I hope I don't lose anymore ...)

You will feel better with fewer pumping sessions, but remember that it will all be over probably by the time she's a year old. I felt like you many times but decided to stick with it because I tried to remember that. Good luck!

amanda
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby amanda » Mon Aug 21, 638305 1:45 pm

Hi - I'm a little late on this one but I wanted to let you know that I am doing exactly what you are doing (or considering doing). I nurse before work, pump once, and then nurse when I get home and then again at bedtime. I nurse all the time on the weekends. I was able to maintain my supply by doing this and eventually not have to use pads. That said, have you tried Lilypadz? If not, I HIGHLY recommend them. They, honestly, saved my nursing life because I HATED those pads - they drove me crazy. You can google them and they will come up - they seem kind of 'wierd' but they really really work.

We just went through a formula strike so I would recommend mixing formula with breastmilk for a while to transition her as the taste is really quite different - my dd still hates formula all by itself though - but, she'll have to deal - LOL.

Another thing that I did was I bought another pump that I leave at work and only drag back forth the parts and the milk. It was a lifesaver - that pump is heavy!

I love nursing my little one and am going to try and nurse until she self weans. That said, I totally respect your decision - every mama should do what is best for her! I think you have every right to be proud of yourself for breastfeeding!

I'm glad you feel good about your choice - that's the most important thing!

sonja
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby sonja » Mon Aug 21, 638305 5:02 am

Please don't feel any guilt - you have obviously thought this over and are doing what is best for you and your baby - a happy mom is much better than a stressed out mom!!

Take care.

anyasmom
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby anyasmom » Mon Aug 21, 638305 1:59 am

Thank you all for your responses. I think that I'm going to try to phase out the pumping and maybe cut back to 3x per day (counting the pre-work session) this week, 2x per day the next week, and so on and I'll try to keep nursing in the mornings and evenings for a little while longer. And if I use the stash in the freezer she should continue to be able to get breastmilk for another month or so, and then we'll start phasing in the formula. I truly, truly hated breastfeeding at the beginning, and it's actually quite a miracle we made it this far, so I'm going to congratulate myself for that and try to lay off the guilt for a little while.

I feel good about this choice, and I really appreciate hearing from other people who have had to make similar decisions, even if your ultimate decision was different.

preemomof2
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby preemomof2 » Fri Aug 11, 638305 1:20 am

I nurse for 13 months with DS#1, until I was 1 month prego with DS#2. My son had a little struggle accepting a cup. He never once had a bottle. He was 4 weeks early and had RSV @ 1 month old so it was really good that I decided to BF...his RSV never got bad. Right now I'm 5 months PP with DS#2 and my milk isn't working like it did the first time...so im Formula feeding. It makes me a little upset because I just didn't have that bond with him like i did with #1. He takes 24-30oz a day of formula. I still have milk if I 'squeeze' it out...but no where near enough of what he needs...I wish I could just stop giving him a bottle and go back to boob but there isnt any way for me to produce enough now. On the other hand...I dont mind formula feeding Samuel. It really give me a little more time in the day...it's tough with 2 little ones. When ones happy the other is crying. lol

summerw77
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby summerw77 » Sat Jul 29, 638305 6:39 pm

This is totally your choice and if you feel it's time to stop then stop. I breastfed for 3 months, then dried up because I was on so many meds my dr only wanted me to pt breastfeed. My baby is fine on formula...........................if i'ts adding more stress to a stressful situation then go to formula and enjoy your time with baby. I have a high stress job too (insurance) and can't imagine pumping 3x day, you are great for doing that!

jacobkaden
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby jacobkaden » Sat Jul 29, 638305 12:42 pm

I nursed for a year, but also supplemented with formula, while at work and he was able to go back and forth. He is now 2 years old and still "routes" for the breast, which makes me feel great that the bond is that strong, even after a year! I never pumped during the night; and pumped 2-3 times at work, but I am self-employed, which makes a huge difference! You have to do what makes you happy - the NICU nurses always said, a happy Mom means a happy baby. There are other ways to bond besides BF'g and you have had that initial BF'g bond already. It's an emotional decision to wean - every time I wondered, "Is this the last time?" In the end, the weaning happened naturally and was not too painful! Good luck!

kelly w
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Re : Nursing Question

Postby kelly w » Sat Jul 29, 638305 7:42 am

There are several things to consider [I have worked and nursed my last 4 babies, so I can identify a bit].

First, if you stop nursing there is the very real cost of formula - it is expensive. If money is not a problem, then this won't be a concern - but if the budget is an issue, definitely price formula out and figure out how much you'll be spending on it before you make a final decision.

Second, you may consider that we are headed in to cold and flu season next month - your baby will be much healthier if she's getting breastmilk - that's a proven fact and it is a really nice protection to have, especially when she's still so young. Pumping at work can be extremely stressful, but trying to hold down a full time job while dealing with a very sick baby is also stressful. There can also be added cost there in medical bills.

Your baby has already received many benefits from your nursing her. But keep in mind that most of the long term / life long benefits of breastfeeding are seen in babies who are exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months - 1 year. [As far as reduction in diabetes, lower risk of obesity in adulthood, resistance to some forms of leukemia, etc].

One thing you might consider if you just really can't stand the pumping is doing some of both - some moms nurse while they are at home and give the baby formula while they are at work - thus not having to pump but still saving some money and giving some of the benefits of breastfeeding to their baby.

Anyway, just some things to think about when making your decision. Good luck no matter what you decide!

Kelly




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