Can it be done? FF to BF 5 week old? (Long!)

(15 Posts)
Bambi86 Wed 01-May-13 05:02:25

I'm not sure if this is crazy, please bear with me- I'm desperate!

DS1 is five weeks - I started BF and managed to do this for around 11days. I really struggled and ended up hating it, which I felt very guilty about. DP went out and purchased formula and bottles. From then on I mixed fed formula and expressed breast milk. At the time I was extremely overwhelmed at becoming a first time mother and didn't know what the hell I was doing. I felt very out of control with the BF and I was worried that I was becoming depressed. (Have a history of depression) At the time this is what I needed, in order to stop me spiralling into a black hole. I'm bitterly starting to regret it.

Since then I expressed a few times a day (not as much as I should have, I know) and it worked well. DS1 was fed pretty much 60:40 FF to BM.

Over the last week, DS developed reflux and it was hell- meaning I hardly expressed at all, and he was 100% formula fed. He is on medication and everything
had settled down again
.

What I want to know is, can I go back to exclusively
breastfeeding again? I feel so much calmer than I did when I decided to give up BF, and I really really miss it. I really want that special bond with my DS. I have purchased Fenugreek and plan to take 3 capsules x 3 times a day. My boobs do still leak occasionally but they are not feeling engorged or fullsad

Can it be done? What do I need to do in order to make this a success? Thank you for listening, I really need your advice/ handholding.

TanteRose Wed 01-May-13 05:05:39

your DS is still really small so you have a good change of relactating

see kellymom for good advice

kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/relactation/

you should also probably contact your local LaLeche League support group

good luck smile

TanteRose Wed 01-May-13 05:06:00

good chance

Bambi86 Wed 01-May-13 05:49:03

Thanks Tante!

Have read the link and will be taking the Fenugreek and pumping as the website suggests. Very helpful.

Have you had any success with this yourself?

LillyofWinchester Wed 01-May-13 06:01:54

Yes it can be done if you are determined and have a bit of patience, I know someone who was at admitted to hospital a few weeks after giving birth and was forced to stop and their child was FF. When they came out of hospital all the doctors told them that it was impossible to restart BF but she really wanted to try and after a few weeks was back to exclusively BFing and did so for over a year.

I don't actually know how she did it but it might have been by giving a bottle and then at then end of the feed letting the baby suck as long as they wanted and over a couple of weeks this got the milk back so the bottle was no longer needed. I could be wrong on that though, perhaps she offered the breast first and then the bottle.

If I was you I would call one of the breastfeeding helplines and ask them what the best way of doing it is. I'm guessing by doing lots of skin to skin and letting the baby suck as much as possible. See if you can go to a clinic in your local area for some support too. The fact that there is still some milk there is a really good sign, it is definitely possible to go back to breastfeeding. There is a chaper on it in this book.... www.amazon.co.uk/National-Childbirth-Breastfeeding-Positive-Parenting/dp/0091825695

Breastfeeding is really hard at first in my experience but does get easier after the initial first few weeks, I found about 6 weeks was the turning point for me.

You sound like you have done so well, having a new baby is really hard and feeling anxious about things is totally normal. Congratulations on your new baby and good luck with the feeding. Don't be too hard on yourself it sounds like you are doing a great job and if you really want to return to breastfeeding exclusively don't let anyone tell you it can't be done.

MaybeAMayBaby Wed 01-May-13 06:18:14

DD1 wouldn't latch. For nearly three weeks I expressed and bottle fed her my milk. The midwives weren't very pleasant about it at the time, one said it was 'ruined' now hmm.
I wanted to try and put her to the breast and another new midwife suggested I use a nipple shield. Her advice was to put the shield one for most of the feed, then remove it for last part. Over the next week to gradually increase the time without the shield.
It took my DD 2 days to latch and be without the shield. I bf for over 6 months and had the option of using bottles too.
Not the same situation, but the shield might help.

PurplePidjin Wed 01-May-13 08:14:05

I've heard it can be done, good luck and bump!

Skin to skin (have you got a stretchy wrap sling? They're awesome!) and oats (porridge) for breakfast might help?

Lora1982 Wed 01-May-13 08:16:45

I had to stop with anti bioticsabout this age and ive got back to bf one maybe two bottles a day. Hard work, fenugreek shields the lot but im happy now. I think it took about a month to sort itself out

Lora1982 Wed 01-May-13 08:17:16

And oats grin

Bambi86 Wed 01-May-13 20:23:33

Thank you everyone. I've started to regularly express and there is some milk there! Not loads, but it's still there! Upped the fenugreek and will be taking on all of your advice.

I will let you know how I get on.

PurplePidjin Wed 01-May-13 21:09:43

Fantastic! thanks

LillyofWinchester Thu 02-May-13 03:49:23

That's great, good luck!

Springforward Thu 02-May-13 04:38:22

Have you got a lactation consultant at your local maternity unit? If so they will be able to support you through this process.

My local LC says that the only time they struggle with this is if mum hasn't got an active supply, but you clearly have so all should be ok with the right advice and support.

carlalam Thu 02-May-13 08:06:19

I work a lot with babies and mums who have had this experience and know a breast feeding support group in Queenspark where you can get a lot of support. contact me via email carlalamkin@hotmail.co.uk if you want details, Im a registered osteopath.

violetlights Fri 03-May-13 21:16:33

Please don't regret your decision because you did what was right for you and your baby at the time. You deserve a medal for acknowledging what you needed to do and acting on it. I wish I had been that level headed.

You can go back to bf exclusively. My boy was born with a big cut on his head so couldn't bf. (Although he did the first day as he was on such strong painkillers). He didn't bf for several weeks, but I keep pumping (6-8 times a day) and by 2.5 months he was bf exclusively.

Whatever you decide to do, please realise that you're doing a great, great job. Your son will be just fine whatever you end up doing - my sister's baby has reflux and she's on 100% breastmilk - sometimes these things just happen. flowers

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