Thought about posting this in AIBU but not brave enough
I'm 30 weeks pg with DC4 who has a cleft lip. Also have 3 other DS's aged 6, 5 and 2. The younger 2 have EDS and my 5 year old uses a wheelchair. HV came round today to discuss the "support" that's on offer. I'm not interested in most of it as I don't think it will be that helpful but I could do with some decent breastfeeding support.
HV tells me that the rules have changed since I had DS3 and now the breastfeeding group at the childrens centre is for babies under 4 months only, no toddlers allowed. There is a group for older babies but it's at a coffee shop with nobody running it so no professional help and I don't think DS3 would sit quietly in that environment for long. Cleft lip isn't exactly common so it's unlikely that anyone else there will have experienced it but the people who run the "official" group would be much more likely to be able to help.
She suggested I send DS3 to preschool but he's only been walking since christmas, still very clumsy and also really small (currently wearing 9-12 month clothes). He's nowhere near ready for that yet. Nearest group that lets toddlers go is 2 bus rides away and would take me hours to get there and back. Why do they make it so hard for 2nd+ time mums to get breastfeeding support.
Thanks for the replies. After spending a couple of hours on the internet and on the phone, the infant feeding specialist and a nurse from clapa will do home visits after DC4 is born. Only one other group I can get to but not sure if they let in toddlers or not.
DS3 does have a disability (ehlers danlos syndrome) but I think his size is just because we are all shorties in our family. DS2 has the same condition although more severely. I've talked to the children's centre and they have confirmed the rule about no babies over 4 months. Apparantly it's because older babies make the environment less "nurturing" .
It just feels so sad because when I went with DS3 they had peer supporters and all the mums of toddlers would be offering the new mums a drink etc and welcoming them. The HV used to turn up late and leave early. Now that the peer supporters have been kicked out I hope that the HV's are making more of an effort at the group.
Should never have talked to my mum about it though. She breastfed in the 80's when there was no bf support after you were discharged from the midwife and people who struggled after that switched to formula. I've seen a vast improvement in breastfeeding support between having DS1 and now and I see this as a good thing.