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Tandemers, a couple of questions

(11 Posts)
otchayaniye Tue 31-May-11 07:48:17

I am 6-1/2 months pregnant and feeding my 2-1-2 year-old daughter. Although I never really set out to feed for x amount of time, I’m happy to continue and hope that feeding both girls will diminish any feelings of the elder one being pushed out.

I’d had to wind down the feeding on demand and breastfeeding through the night in order to get a period. So supply had gone down a bit. She didn’t lose all interest in feeding but fed for much shorter times. I kept feeding but she told me the milk wasn’t coming when I was about 16 weeks. I couldn’t manually express any (I’m a dreadful expresser anyway). It didn’t stop her though!

But she’s told me it has restarted and I’ve expressed and reckon it might be colostrums. It’s clear, not milky. Anyway, she loves all this and has definitely ramped up her feeding. Partly I guess because we talk about how I’m going to feed her sister and that she can have some.

My main question is this. If colostrum is coming now, will it come in again for the baby? I’m likely to have a section again, although the section didn’t have any bearing on milk coming in first time. Don’t know if this will be a factor. Should I not feed my older daughter in the first few days? Should I try and harvest this colostrum (Christ knows how though)?

I feel I can’t ask my midwives as two I’ve seen when I mentioned feeding my daughter looked askance and told me I ought to stop as my body needs to make milk for the baby, not my toddler (I didn’t have the gumption to ask further). I also don’t know anyone in real life who has fed this long. And I’m too skint to splash out 30 quid on Adventures in Tandem Feeding.

Thanks all

Babieseverywhere Tue 31-May-11 07:59:18

The colostrum will keep coming through until you give birth and the removal of the placenta will trigger your milk. You might find your milk will appear quicker than last time as you already have a nursing toddler, this is an advantage as you are likely to have an CS.

I tandem nursed through my last pregnancy and my milk started within hours, compared to five days for my first baby !

Unless you think you might be separated from your baby or think the baby might be born with low blood sugar, there is no need to express off any colostrum. If you wanted to do so, it would be easier to hand express and collect the colostrum in a sterile needle-less syringe as it is only made in such small quantities.

All the best.

WoTmania Tue 31-May-11 08:33:18

What Babieseverywhere said. Couldn't have put it better myself smile

TruthSweet Tue 31-May-11 08:36:35

otch - I've bf through two pgs - both time my milk disappeared at 14w and came back between 24/26 weeks as colostrum. DD1 & DD2 never stopped nursing during the dry spell but ramped it up when the colostrum came back. I can honestly say the nappies were lovely [envious] <boak>

You will make enough colostrum for the baby and the toddler but I would suggest on the first day feeding baby as much as possible on each side and if your toddler is around only letting her have a side after baby has finished as colostrum is present in only small amounts on the first day so I would concentrate on feeding baby on day 1 but milk production rapidly increases from day 2 onwards so I wouldn't be concerned after that.

EauRouge Tue 31-May-11 09:18:17

Another vote for "you'll be fine" smile And yes, toddler colostrum poo is bleugh.

The book is only £10.99 here.

otchayaniye Tue 31-May-11 09:30:49

My daughter doesn't wear nappies but I'll remember not to breathe in too hard when she goes to the loo. Is it more runny/whiffy?

Thanks everyone.

Any idea why the midwife said that? I'm already feeling like the 'weird one out' for feeding this long and the thing is hitherto she's only fed at home, with the baby it may be that she wants to feed with DD2 in front of relatives and I think they might explode with shock (not that I'm overly bothered)

So for a midwife to give me the raised eyebrow was a bit of a surprise.

RitaMorgan Tue 31-May-11 09:41:18

I would guess that, seeing as midwives only get minimal training on breastfeeding newborns, they are pretty stumped at breastfeeding a 2 year old. And completely flummoxed at the idea of tandem feeding.

EauRouge Tue 31-May-11 10:03:57

I think it used to be recommended that women stop BF when they become pregnant. The advice has changed but some of the more <cough> experienced MWs tend to be more set in their ways. I had a recently qualified MW when I booked in with DD2 and she didn't have a clue about tandem feeding but was open-minded about it. Some of the older MWs I saw were a bit hmm so I offered to lend them my copy of AITN, which they declined sad

On the other hand, I saw a HV the other day who had had extra BF training with some BFI thing and she said 'well done' for tandem feeding, I nearly fell off the sofa in shock grin

otchayaniye Tue 31-May-11 10:24:06

Do you know out of interest why it was recommended then? What's the actual reason given? I got the impression they thought I was hopeless and hadn't succeeded in weaning and that I ought to get my skates on, rather than that I'd taken a positive stance to continue it. So I was taken aback and didn't really ask why?

Is it because of confusion over milk production, draining the mother of energy or bringing on early labour (I guess through nipple stimulation) or some variant of all three?

TruthSweet Tue 31-May-11 10:37:32

It used to be thought that bfing was 'stealing' nutrients from the baby and that the suckling could bring on a miscarriage.

I guess if you are on starvation rations and you have multiple vitamin/mineral deficiencies that might be the case but then I would imagine that you wouldn't be able to get pg if that was case.

The suckling does release oxytocin but the receptors on the womb aren't all switched on until labour is imminent though if you have been put on pelvic rest (no penetration/orgasms) due to threatened miscarriage/premature labour then weaning might be in baby's best interests.

In an ordinary pg in an ordinary woman I can't think of any reason to wean (except if the mother or child wants to).

MoonFaceMamaaaaargh Tue 31-May-11 13:32:16

hi otch. I'm 21wks and bf ds (15m). I just wanted to point you in the direction of the "bf while pg" thread. It drops off the board occasionaly then is reserected. It might be worth a look for you to read others experiences. Like you i don't know any one in rl who's done this so was glad to know there are others out there. grin

Adventures is def worth the eleven quid from the lll site imo, but maybe you could see if your library could get it for you?
Best wishes for the last part of your pg, birth and bfing your new lo. smile

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