Help please! At the end of my patience.

(21 Posts)
cupcake78 Wed 03-Jul-13 07:26:54

Dd is 4 days old. I am trying to breastfeed her but finding her demand near impossible to fullfill.

She's feeding every 2 hrs during the day 6-6pm, then it starts. The constant need for milk, continuous feeding, screaming, frantic need which is resulting in loads of wind and pain.

We hit rock bottom last night at 2 and topped her off with formula. This gave me 30mins till it started again.

I don't think I can do this much longer. I'm in tears every night. Please help!

I'm exhausted, utterly exhausted!

s0fedup Wed 03-Jul-13 07:50:27

Remember breastfeeding is not the be all and end all, you need to do what is best for.you.
I stopped with this baby at 4 days as she was constantly latched on and our quality of life was being compromised. I looked at her.and thought, all I had done for 4 days was feed her. I had not actually looked at her, cuddled her, kissed her or loved her. It had been all about nipples, boobs positions etc.
When I stopped the relief was enormous and i habe not looked back. She is happy and fed and I am really enjoying her!
Of course you must do what is right for you, but you as mummy must be happy too...

squidkid Wed 03-Jul-13 07:55:07

Oh honey. This bit is so hard! Has your milk come in?

Newborns feed an AWFUL lot but they also have very definite growth spurts - in the first few days, around 2 weeks, and around 6 weeks if I remember right.

I used to call growth spurts "are my boobs even producing milk?" days. It's exhausting and makes you doubt yourself. But it is the baby "ordering" your breasts to produce more milk for the next day, and I found after each growth spurt (usually 2-3 days) she was suddenly settled, sleeping, easy.

There is only one way to deal with growth spurts - good books, good tv...have everything to hand. Get people to bring you food and especially water. Try and relax and focus on the cuddles because you probably won't get away to do anything else. If your partner or someone else is around it's helpful to get them to do cuddles and winding and rocking baby immediately after each feed, let you have a little bit of peace. Nights are obviously hard and I learned to feed lying down, and made my bed safe for co-sleeping so we could both drift off if she was ever satisfied.

I found counting how often she fed very unhelpful. The most helpful thing for me was identifying it as a growth spurt - NOT the way things are always going to be - just the baby ordering more milk. Try to just go with it. It is so exhausting. You are doing an amazing job!!

Also massive congratulations. Is this your first baby?

llamallama Wed 03-Jul-13 07:56:11

This phase will pass. She is helping you build your supply which you need to be successful at breastfeeding.

I disagree with the previous poster. You arnt just feeding her, you are loving her and cuddling her all the time she is feeding. Breastfeeding is more than food for babies, it's an emotional connection too. As she grows and feels more secure with the world then she will be attached less.

You are doing really well. Just make sure you arnt trying to do too much. Crash out in front of the tv and enjoy your newborn. Everything else can wait!

squidkid Wed 03-Jul-13 07:56:25

Some info on growth spurts

cupcake78 Wed 03-Jul-13 08:44:38

This is 2nd baby. I bf ds till 2weeks and then did bottles as it wasn't working for us then either because I simply couldn't keep up with him.

I'm wondering if I'm the kind of person who can do it? Physically I can but mentally I'm struggling and feeling horribly guilty that ds/dh are so pushed out and I'm so exhausted and stressed because of it. I'm so worried about her keeping them awake that I'm spending every night downstairs with her. Dh feels awful because all he can do is housework, school run etc when I'm getting frustrated that all I can do is sit and feed.

I'm wondering why I'm putting us through this when maybe sharing the responsibility of feeding her and being more flexible as a family is a better lifestyle choice for us.

Doing bottles everyday doesn't bother me at all, I got into a great routine last time.

The things that worry me are the risk of colic, ds got it, dd seems to be leaning towards it. Also the risk of constipation.

I'm sick of having a boob out. I hate not being able to spend as much time with ds on an evening because she is always attached to me.

squidkid Wed 03-Jul-13 09:52:11

I only have the one baby - it must be very hard with two, and you must feel like you're missing out a lot with your son.

Breastfeeding was important to me and me and my boyfriend hit a good groove of me doing all the feeding, him doing everything else around the house, nappies, winding etc. It felt like we really shared responsibility equally... He thanked me a lot for my hard work, and I thanked him for all his, and we tried to not get guilty about what the other was doing - we were both working really hard!! With a second child I expect he'll have to do most of the childcare for the older one and that will be hard.

In my experience, bf is extremely all-consuming for the first few weeks and I don't think it does anyone any favours to pretend otherwise. But it does get a lot easier, and even though those first weeks feel endless when you're in them - they are over soon enough and then my experience was bf was very straightforward, free, easy and lovely, and lots of health benefits for both of us. It is not all like those first few weeks or I'm sure NO ONE would do it longer term.

Of course you must do what's best for your family, and don't feel guilty or that you're not capable, you are obviously a lovely caring mum. I hope my posts don't read as pushy, I just want to let you know even though it's hard it all sounds very normal and if you do decide to continue it does get a LOT easier! How old is your ds? My sister recently bf her very clingy 2nd baby while her 2.5 yr old ran around - I'm trying to think what activities worked well. I went over a lot too - my baby was a couple months older than hers - the solidarity helped I think!

lot of ideas here...

squidkid Wed 03-Jul-13 10:02:09

Hope today is better for you & you get a nap. xx

tiktok Wed 03-Jul-13 10:54:39

cupcake, do get some decent real life support and help for everything. Your baby is just 4 days - what is happening now is not going to last forever smile Just 4 days ago she was inside you - breastfeeding is a normal way for her to 'connect' with you emotionally and taste your familiar taste, smell your familiar smell, and hear your familiar voice, and these things help her transition to the strange and new world outside of you smile

Its highly unlikely she is in pain or has wind - her crying is her need for you and your milk and the emotional and social connection she is hardwired to make with you. Chat to the midwife about your expectations and the support and help you need. At the moment, expecting your baby to sleep and settle anywhere else but close to your breast may be too much - but of course you need to work out how to meet your own needs as well, while meeting hers.

Franup Wed 03-Jul-13 11:24:56

If you want to try for a bit longer, here is what made the difference between feeding dc1 and feeding dc2 and dc3. With the first baby I made feeding the focus of the day - I was obsessed and anxious. With the other 2 it was just part of the day not the focus. I still fed on demand but if the feeding was done and a wet nappy and a poo was produced, I'd burp them (fast letdown so mine needed a wind) then I was happy to settle them to sleep, get them in the pram and go out or tell dp he needed to hold for an hour or so.

I found if we went out they often had a decent kip for 1-2 hours and then the next feed time felt more proper! If we went out and they did the newborn thing of conking out for 4 hours, then when I got in I made sure I had a bit of a big feed time to fill them back up! I've had settled and unsettled babies but 6-8 weeks was still the faffy newborn stage and I've seen ff babies need the same amount of faffing and comforting too!

My only anal part was I had a set bedtime routine from week one and it worked on them and meant a couple of months in I had my evenings back.

I also had slightly different views on the sibling thing and housework. The older ones often became a bit more independent and creative with my back turned! It did them no harm to see me caring for a baby and realising that that is what is needed with siblings and that sharing of time and people will be the new reality. It is also good to see Dad doing some household things and you are meant to rest after birth.

Not sure if any of this helps! I always think if 6 weeks in, you still aren't happy, fair dos. Had a good go. Move on!

cari1979 Wed 03-Jul-13 11:54:11

I am in tears reading this cupcake!! i am feeling exactly the same way. My bubba is 8 days old and yesterday and today he's done nothing but feed and the erge to give up and go onto formula is overwhelming at night. Everyone says, sleep when they do but when all he's doing is sucking on my boob how the heck is this possible. Squidkid, fantastic advice!! I know its gonna be so hard but knowing Im not the only one feeling like this makes me feel less stressed and guilty for feeling so stressed. Thank you x

peggyundercrackers Wed 03-Jul-13 12:58:53

my dd was still feeding all the time after 3/4 weeks but i gave up and started alternating with bottle feeds. 2 of the midwifes who came to see me told me that if they were still feeding after 30-45 mins it was a waste as there was effectively no milk coming out after that amount of time hence the reason she was crying and wanting to feed more.

after i moved to bottle things became much much easier for both of us, dd and me, becuase she was getting what she needed and i wasnt stressed about it.

DO NOT FEEL PRESSURISED INTO BFing NOT MATTER WHAT ANYONE ELSE SAYS - DO WHAT SUITS YOU.

cupcake78 Wed 03-Jul-13 17:26:33

Today I was given an electric breast pump to try and increase my supply and to top dd up. I tried it and there is blood in my milk, quite alot. I spoke to the bf advice people for help who have said only use one breast for now and hand express out of the sore breast.

Dh laughed at this and said if two boobs and 9 hours isn't enough how is one going to work. He's taken the decision and I'm pleased he has that tonight we formula feed, see how it goes but definitely combination at least.

It's been one hell of a few days. My breast have been sore for days and if there is blood in my milk I can't think this is helping dd's digestion of it.

I'm dreading tonight but dh has said he will help me through it.

I'm not going to ebf dd. My family and my sanity are being to torn apart by this.

tiktok Wed 03-Jul-13 17:46:37

cupcake, is the blood from your breast or from your nipple? If nipple then yes, good idea to hand express so the nipple is not s...t....r....e...t...c...h...e...d with the pump. I would be surprised if they meant don't use that side at all - are you sure they meant that?

At four-five days your milk may not have come in, so judging volumes is not appropriate really.

Blood in your milk is not normally a danger to your baby. If it has come from your breasts, check out 'rusty pipe syndrome' - not all that uncommon, 100 per cent harmless.

I hope your feeding works out and that you feel relaxed and less stressed - only saying the things here so you are aware of the relevant info smile

s0fedup Wed 03-Jul-13 19:11:20

Oh cupcake you poor thing. I was you with my first it was horrific and all i wanted was someone to tell me I should stop. Good for your dh for doing that, it takes the pressure off you, I bet he is worried sick about you!
Tomorrow is a new day, you will feel 100% better after a stretch of a few hours sleep xxx

spleenyone Wed 03-Jul-13 19:25:32

Congratulations on your baby! Your posts could be me when I had both of mine, trying and failing to breast feed them nearly sent me mad, thankfully I turned to the bottle before too much damage was done. I really wanted to feed them myself but it just didn't happen and now, looking back, it really didn't make one bit of difference. Bottle feeding them, sharing the load with my family, being more sane and relaxed, enabled me to finally enjoy my babies. Do what you need to do to feed your babies and do not let anyone make you feel bad, you do the best for your family. All the best xxx

cupcake78 Wed 03-Jul-13 20:25:34

I think we've decided. Well we have its just I keep questioning it. I get anxious and panicky at stopping yet tonight dd is lying on dh having a cuddle and they are both loving it!
The fact its day 4 and baby blues are killing me isn't helping! In the plus side I'm back in many of my pre preg clothes after putting on 4 stone in preg!!! How that can happen I have no idea. I haven't weighed myself. Now is not the time to be dealing with that as well. I'm sure the stress has a lot to do with it!
What do I do with my breasts if I'm stopping? How do you deal with engorging?

mrsmartin1984 Wed 03-Jul-13 20:40:27

I know it's hard now. But keep going. It does get easier and you'll be so proud of yourself if you succeed. It's a natural reaction to get your supply through

cupcake78 Wed 03-Jul-13 22:20:03

No sorry decision is made! I appreciate some people feel its important to ride through the first few weeks but for us the quality of our family life is much more important.

I feel far from proud of myself watching dd scream for hours because she's starving in comparison to tonight when she's happily sat between us wide awake snuffling and content.

spleenyone Wed 03-Jul-13 22:34:56

I am so pleased for you that you feel happy with your decision. When I had to give up trying to breast feed the midwife told me just to leave my breasts alone, keep a bra on and let nature take its course. All will return to normal soon. Well done for coming as far as this and just enjoy your beautiful baby now xxx

s0fedup Wed 03-Jul-13 22:42:24

Well said spleeny!

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