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Please help me keep going

(23 Posts)

DS is 5 months, one week today. He's EBF but...

I'm shattered. So so tired today after 3 night feeds (11,2.30, 4.00 song & dance lasting til 5.30) and a 7.00 wake up
My boobs look like old mans flat caps & I want to wear a decent bra again.
After months of pain free feeds I seem to have boob thrush (on ABs) and it hurts.
I want DH to be able to take some of the strain.

But over the last few months I have really enjoyed feeding & saw myself carrying on until DS could have cows milk sad at the least I wanted to get to 6 months... it's SO close and I know my personality is such that I'll give myself a hard time if I fall at the final gate.

Can someone please give me a kick up the arse and tell me it's the shitty night's sleep talking and it's such a short time. This too will pass. No guarantee he'll sleep through on formula etc. etc.

Or tell me how wonderful FF is, he will sleep amazingly from the first night and why am I getting my knickers in a knot?

Or even a plan C.

hollie84 Fri 29-Aug-14 15:20:02

Thrush is horrible - are you treating both you and your baby? DS1 always get it after ABs.

I did find a bottle of formula at 11pm helped massively with sleep - not necessarily that it made the baby sleep any longer I'm afraid, but that DP could give it so I could go to bed at 9pm and sleep til the next feed at 2/3am. Then the following feed I would bring the baby into bed with me.

monsterowl Fri 29-Aug-14 15:27:15

You poor thing.

It's obviously important to you to make it to at least 6 months. I understand that completely: I had a really hard time EBF DD ... I remember feeding her at night when she was 2 months old and thinking I couldn't bear 4 more months of it. As it turned out, she self-weaned at 17 months. DS was more attached to the feeds, and didn't self-wean until he was nearly 3. I was determined to let them both self-wean, but the final few months of feeding DS were really tough - he was still waking at night to feed, and I felt sort of how you do now. I found it really helpful to immerse myself in online communities of people who were ardent breastfeeders. You could try joining these Facebook groups, which really helped keep me motivated:

Dispelling breastfeeding myths
Breastfeeding older babies and beyond (I know yours isn't an 'older baby', but this is a great page full of really enthusiastic breastfeeding mums who will spur you on)
Kellymom
La Leche League
Lactivists (warning: I joined this group by left shortly afterwards because I found the attitude of the people there often very unpleasant and judgemental, but it obviously suits some people)

worldgonecrazy Fri 29-Aug-14 15:27:58

Get the thrush treated. You might have to fight for flucanazole tablets but keep pushing.

don't forget chocolate cake and a glass of wine.

monsterowl Fri 29-Aug-14 15:28:39

Another option, of course, would be to pump and store expressed milk so that DH could do some feeds while you get some sleep. That would enable him to take some of the strain (which you say you want) but would allow you to fulfil your goal of EBF-ing ...

Thank you for taking the time to respond everyone.

Sorry I wasn't clear - I meant I am taking antibiotics/ flucanazole for the thrush. Although I specifically asked the dr if DS needed treatment and he said no as he wasn't showing signs. I was very hmm inwardly, but just nodded like a donkey and left it.

The 11.00 last night was a bit of a curve ball, it's not a regular occurrence. I'm tempted to try a dream formula feed, but I'm put off as my friend did it and it made no difference to sleep but her DS then started waking at that time for a feed anyway! But it's worth a try.

And yes Monsterowl - I find my NCT group a good spur as the majority are still EBFing, so I will take a look at the sites you suggested. Thank you.

monsterowl Fri 29-Aug-14 16:47:56

One more thing: I found (with both of my kids) that after 6 months of breastfeeding, the weight loss effect really kicked in! That may or may not be relevant to motivating you. At its height, when DS was between about 8 and 12 months, I was struggling to keep weight on. Most days I would eat 3 or 4 chocolate bars while I was waiting for my lunch to cook, then eat lunch, pud, etc :D DS finally weaned just over a month ago, and I'm struggling to break the habit of chomping on treats while I'm cooking ...

FavaBeanPyramidScheme Fri 29-Aug-14 16:54:36

Co-sleeping makes night time feeds pass almost unnoticed smile.
He will start to feed less (shorter feeds and fewer of them).
I hated nursing bras and was desperate for something pretty and underwired so I just ditched them at about 6 months and it was fine.
FFing will mean bottles and the cost of formula.
cake!

Oh yes Monsterowl. The weight loss is a definite motivator! Thank you I had momentarily forgotten that in my zombie-like state!

Thanks Fava - the problem is that DS has never ever not once latched without a shield. Which is fine, it saved my sanity on the dark, early days, but presents its own continual annoyances - the milk everywhere, constantly losing them in the house, paranoia that I've got one when we're out & making sure I have enough for the night feeds etc. I had a go at a lying down feed this morning... It wasn't pretty wink

Gen35 Fri 29-Aug-14 17:16:02

I think your sleep is the biggest challenge. I think express or ff a nighttime feed at least for a week so you can restore yourself a bit, and kick the thrush. Most of the happiest bits of bf happened between 6-10 months for me, as you are feeding less, but it makes them so happy.

Babybru1 Fri 29-Aug-14 17:27:48

I had to stop breast feeding when my baby was 8 weeks due to my own medical reasons. GUTTED
I hate bottle feeding & it's taken forever to find the right formula for my little one. As lots have caused him to be unsettled with digestive problems. My little ones 13 weeks now.
My little one wakes every two to three hours through the night despite being on formula milk now & not breast milk.
Hang on in there, it will be worth it in the end.
Hugs x

hollie84 Fri 29-Aug-14 17:28:28

You can get daktarin oral gel over the counter for your DS. Make sure you are hot washing/sterilising anything that comes into contact with your breasts or his mouth, especially shields/teats/dummies.

Chaby Fri 29-Aug-14 17:30:32

My DS was similar but things got a lot easier around 7 months when weaning was well underway and he started (mostly) sleeping through the night.

Gen, will I be able to kick the milk supply back off again if I skip a night feed for a few days?

Thank you for the positive stories about 6mth+ - it's very encouraging.

hollie84 Fri 29-Aug-14 17:39:07

At 5 months your supply will be very adaptable and will just switch to what you need.

monsterowl Fri 29-Aug-14 17:39:29

Serious respect to Babybru1 for being rational and non-defensive about FF. Very sorry to hear about your medical problems causing problems with BF.

Gen35 Fri 29-Aug-14 18:13:42

Not sure tbh re the supply op, it probably varies, I found my supply did adjust easily when I moved feeds (in my case I expressed for nursery days) but I'm sure some have had issues. That's the tricky part of bf, you might think if you're expressing the milk earlier in the day, when you stop expressing it should then be available...I do think you need rest though to get better and also though 6 months exclusive is the gold target, I wouldn't personally beat myself up if I ended up with a small ff top up at 5.5 months, it's so close and I'd still carry on to enjoy all the benefits of bf for the 6-12 month stretch.

eatscakefornoreasonwhatsoever Fri 29-Aug-14 18:22:27

I will second the very hot washes for anything in boob contact. (clothing, nipple shields etc) Get some oral thrush treatment for the baby. Your GP is an ignorant twunt for not prescribing some.

Allow boobs to air as much as possible. Warm, sweaty environments will encourage the thrush. If you can, a dilute vinegar rinse after a feed can be good to help balance the PH environment. Plus - take probiotics, good quality supplements. The last thing you need is vaginal thrush too.

mrscog Fri 29-Aug-14 18:28:10

Lots of people have given you some really good practical advice, what I would say (and repeat from others) is 'Never choose to give up on a bad day'. It's probably the bad night's sleep, he might just be a couple of weeks away from dropping a night feed - often when you introduce solids which is only 4-5 weeks away now that makes a difference. As for a normal bra, what size are you? I was only a C cup and went back into normal bras at this time, (albeit quite loose ones so it was easy to get a boob out). Could you treat yourself to a couple of super duper early nights (9pm ish) to help you catch up on sleep?

monsterowl Fri 29-Aug-14 18:32:42

'Never choose to give up on a bad day'

That's pretty good advice about anything!

Mrs Cog you are so right, and that's what this is - I'm tired and fed up and I've got a Breastfeeding cob-on. I'll be back on track by Monday I'm sure.

And thank you babybru - you have been very honest and you have reminded me that I am very lucky (and I do believe successful breast feeding needs a big pinch of luck when the stars align and your milk/boobs/baby all work together) to have been able to feed my DS. It's good for him but it's been a gift to me too.

Thanks everyone for your kind and constructive comments - this is the second time this topic has come to my aid and Im sincerely grateful x

Writerwannabe83 Fri 29-Aug-14 22:24:45

Hello OP - you are like my virtual twin!!

I have a DS who is exactly 5 months and one week and I'm feeling the exact sane way you are!!! I started a thread about it a few days ago actually : "Does anyone else wish they weren't breast feeding" - you should find it and have a read as all the replies were so helpful and reassuring smile

I went out today for 5 hours and left DS with DH and it was amazing!!! I left DH a supply of EBM and a syringe (DS doesn't take a bottle) and off I went!! It helped to make me feel that DH was taking the strain for a change!!

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