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To be devastated that I can't breastfeed my baby?

(159 Posts)
smellsofelderberries Thu 10-Nov-16 11:31:13

My little one is 6 days old and we just can't seem to get the hang of breastfeeding, and it's really affecting me. I spend so much of the days in tears over it. I am pumping and she is having bottles, but on the rare occasion I can get her to latch she just lies there and won't suck. I have a good milk supply, but we just can't seem to make it happen sad I am desperate to breastfeed and don't know what else to do.
Anyone else had similar and managed to successfully transition from bottle to breast? I'm starting to lose hope sad
We have seen a lactation consultant at our local childhood health centre but wondering if a private consultant might be the next step, though I'm not sure how they can help if she just won't suck.

Joinourclub Thu 10-Nov-16 11:38:26

Be kind to yourself, it's very early days. Babies change so much week by week at this stage, so if you persevere it could suddenly click into place at any time. What how of bottle are you using. I was advised to use the type that best mimic the nipple do that they find moving from bottle to breast easier. Again be kind to yourself. You're baby may not be breast feeding but they are feeding. You're doing a good job.

FayKorgasm Thu 10-Nov-16 11:39:08

Is she taking the bottle ok and putting on weight?

Please don't be putting pressure on yourself and getting upset. Sometimes breastfeeding just doesn't work out and that's ok.

RebeccaWithTheGoodHair Thu 10-Nov-16 11:40:17

Sorry to say I've got no real idea. Personally I'd stick with expressing, keep seeing the specialist and try not to worry about it. You're still getting the closeness with your baby and she'll be getting all the nutrition from you.

Congratulations on your new baby, try not to let this get you down flowers

Reiltin Thu 10-Nov-16 11:41:20

I'm sorry you're having so much trouble. You may not realise this but most people do. Well done for keeping on trying and for seeking out support. Do try the private consultant - they may make all the difference. Bear in mind that almost everyone can breastfeed - you just need some support to get there. Good luck x

bumbleymummy Thu 10-Nov-16 11:41:53

A private consultant may be able to help. They can spend a bit more time with you. I have a few friends with babies that struggled in the early days and then it just clicked for them. If you can say whereabouts you are (even generally) I'm sure someone could recommend a good consultant near you. thanks

Trifleorbust Thu 10-Nov-16 11:42:15

It's so easy to put pressure on yourself about this issue which, in the grand scheme of things, isn't such a big deal. What matters is that the baby is getting the nutrition she needs and you are confident that you are meeting her needs. I wouldn't suggest not hiring a consultant, but I would certainly suggest trying to gain a wider perspective. As long as she is healthy and happy, everything is fine. flowers

StrawberryQuik Thu 10-Nov-16 11:43:32

Its's early days yet, you're both still learning. flowers Where I live there are 'breastfeeding cafes' in children's centres and health clinics where you can go for help/advice.

Apologies if you've already been taught this but when I had DS the midwife taught me to hand express a little so he could smell the milk and then to stroke/tickle his cheek a little to stimulate the sucking reflex.

AyeAmarok Thu 10-Nov-16 11:45:50

smells congratulations again on your new arrival.

Please try not to focus too much on this that you miss out on enjoying her. She's getting breastmilk, you're keeping your supply going, you're doing exactly the right things. She might get it in a few days or she might just decide it's not for her. Babies have a mind of their own sometimes!

ErrolTheDragon Thu 10-Nov-16 11:45:51

flowers I'm somewhat in awe of anyone who can pump at this stage!

Try to relax with her in between feeds. I think my breakthrough moment was when I thought of how cats just seem to lie down dozing while the kits get onto it. Cozy cuddles to your skin with no stress, just enjoy each other. It's very early days, and you're obviously doing a great job with the pumping to keep your milk supply going.

RayofFuckingSunshine Thu 10-Nov-16 11:46:36

That must be so hard, please don't beat yourself up. A private consultant might help, it may also be worth contacting your local le leche league who are a wealth of information and support.

Please remember though that if it doesn't work; it's not the end of the world. You're LO won't remember how she was fed in the early days and you're certainly no less of a wonderful parent for not being able to breastfeed.

popthisoneout Thu 10-Nov-16 11:47:19

I would ask about finger feeding rather than using the bottle as IME you'll have more success with getting her latched back on when finger feeding. You could also try taping the tube to the nipple and she may be more inclined to suck.

It's still very early days so yet not to stress too much but do ask the children's centre midwives about options.

JellyWitch Thu 10-Nov-16 11:48:59

6 days is so early. If you want to do this, keep trying. You are doing the right thing by pumping and maintaining your supply and by keeping your baby fed while you work on the latch.

Have you got a local La Leche League leader - they are well qualified to give (free support) - give that helpline a ring: 0345 120 2918.

Have you read this:

S1lentAllTheseYears Thu 10-Nov-16 12:00:27

She's still so tiny and might even be still a bit sleepy from the birth. Keep trying and do see the private consultant. Totally agree with Errol's suggestion. I had similar struggles with my DS1 and I really wish someone had told me to just stay in bed with him for a few days, do the absolute bare minimum around the house etc (all that can wait!) just chill and have loads of skin to skin cuddles.

ScoobyDoosTinklyLaugh Thu 10-Nov-16 12:01:16

No amount of trying, midwives, private lactation consultants, local peer breastfeeding support, la leche league involvement, NCT helpline supper or breastfeeding cafes was enough to get breastfeeding to work for me and my DD and I was absolutely devastated. But in time I've got over it. I wish I could turn back time and never bother I never bonded with DD until I stopped trying to breastfeed.

Expressing, giving formula, topping up with EBM and trying to get to latch on is like living in a nightmare and I don't think it should be advised as a routine for any longer than a week because it's completely unsustainable and means you get zero sleep.

Just make an informed decision and stick with it and be proud of producing a tiny irrational person and keeping it alive flowersflowersflowers

Underchipsandpeas Thu 10-Nov-16 12:03:28


Day 5/6 is the day when a LOT of women have a big cry-a-thon, the combo of tiredness, feeling overwhelmed etc, so that's totally normal and it passes.
Re BF it's very early days, I reckon it can take a few weeks to get the hang of it, both for you and her. It will get better, hang in there!

LittleMoonbuggy Thu 10-Nov-16 12:04:37

If you can afford it, please do see a private lactation consultant. They will have more time to spend with you and are often more experienced and knowledgeable. Ask them to check for tongue tie.

I know how it feels as I've been there, but whatever happens your baby will be fine. You can only try your best with breastfeeding, it can feel impossible sometimes.

ZZZZ1111 Thu 10-Nov-16 12:04:43

Don't lose hope, it is such early days for you. Lots of women and babies have a tough time early on but are able to breastfeed after a bit of work!

It sounds like you would benefit from some professional guidance. If you can afford it then private lactation consultants can be fab. Make sure you get one that is accredited - ibclc. See here:

My baby wouldn't latch or suck when he was born but luckily I was advised to get him checked for tongue tie. A lactation consultant was able to do the procedure and then support us for three weeks with latching and positioning etc. At the end of the three weeks we were fully breastfeeding, and nine month in still going strong.

You can do this, just make sure you get some good support.

Grumpyoldblonde Thu 10-Nov-16 12:06:50

Please try not to get upset, it really is early days and for some women breastfeeding is like a duck to water, for others it's more difficult and for others still it just doesn't work out (me despite best efforts)
It's so important that you are kind on yourself, get as much rest as possible and eat well. Your lovely baby will thrive whether on breast milk or formula (if it comes to that) take advice certainly but don't beat yourself up and allow this to spoil these precious early days. Congratulations!

WiMoChi Thu 10-Nov-16 12:07:02

Could t be that if she's us used to bottles she's being lazy on the boob?

Just an idea.

First days are shockingly tough, however you feed your baby. Stay strong and get to a local BF support group if you can x

Snowflakes1122 Thu 10-Nov-16 12:08:42

Has the midwife checked her for tongue tie?

Those first days/weeks getting the hang of breastfeeding can be hard. I was in tears many times with mine as non of them seemed to latch on properly to begin with.

It does sound like you'd benefit from speaking to your midwife. They were all so great with this sort of thing with my 3.
Day 6 is so early on, so don't feel disheartened.


Namechangenurseryconcerns Thu 10-Nov-16 12:11:02

My advice (from personal experience) would be to give it your everything for a limited amount of time-perhaps another couple of weeks and hopefully you will sort it out-private consultant, breastfeeding cafe etc. But if it doesn't work out try to make your peace with not breastfeeding and embrace the positives of using formula.
I ruined the first few months of dd's life by making breastfeeding the absolute be all and end all.

havalina1 Thu 10-Nov-16 12:13:36

Don't lose hope - and brilliant and good on you for keeping trying.

Have you got a LactatioN consultant who can help?

I bf my two and the dirst was dogged with problems. Can we help here??

Can your health visitor recommend a good person to assist you?

I used a LC privately to sort out my problems, plus a very pro bf gp.

And don't forget that horrible baby blues hormonal crash happens abut now so you'd probably be bawling anyway!!

Hugs x

havalina1 Thu 10-Nov-16 12:15:59

Sorry. - I re-read your post. Yes go to one privately, they usually come to your home.

THe bottle might be causing nipple confusion. Did she feed from you at the start?

Furble Thu 10-Nov-16 12:16:35

I was also in bits on day 5, very similar to you. My baby couldn't stay latched on for more than a few minutes at the most. Fortunately the community midwife suggested using nipple shields and he latched on immediately with those, I wouldn't still be breastfeeding now if it weren't for those. I also went to the breast feeding cafe where they spotted his tongue tie which has now been cut. He's finally able to latch on without the shield and I'm phasing out the bottles slowly as my supply increases.
Have a sleep and eat and see how you feel in a bit. As long as your baby is fed (regardless of bf or ff) and you are taking care of yourself (very important) all will be well.

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