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still feeding every 1-2 hours at almost 9 months. I NEED to space feeds. how?

(18 Posts)
MamaChocoholic Fri 24-Jun-11 13:15:49

at 8 (nearly 9) months my dts still feed every 1-2 hours. day and night. dt1 can go longer than dt2, but if she sees him feed will want to join in. I hate feeding them together, so I try and distract one while I feed the other. to some extent I think this is why they feed so often - it is easier to distract one if s/he's not so hungry while I feed the other. but dt2 in particular will cry if he hasn't been fed for a while, sometimes as little as 1 hour, and there's no distracting him till he has a feed. this is a PITA because it means I am still doing over 24 feeds a day, but particularly because if one feeds both want to. I do hate feeding them together, but although I increasingly do it at home to keep the peace, I will not do so when out, so I have to hold one crying baby whilst feeding the other. if I knew reliably they could go 3 hours or so between feeds it would make my life immensely somewhat easier.

so, to all those who have managed to space your babies' feeds, how? both dts had posterior tt, but it has been cut, and they do only get one side each feed (the other baby gets the other side). there is no other reason I can see for the frequent feeding. they have started solids and are both eating a little, though not huge amounts.

liquoriceandtomatoes Fri 24-Jun-11 15:18:40

Oooooooooh that sounds hard!!!!! 24 feeds a day at nearly nine mnths. I don't have twins so no advice on that front but my ds is nearly 9 mnths too and he has about 5/6 feeds during the day at most 8 during a growth spurt. It sounds tricky so I hope someone with twins comes along with some advice

Albrecht Fri 24-Jun-11 15:22:45

Oh gosh, hard work. Have you tried breast compressions, massage, flapping them about etc. so they are getting more at each feed? Although how you do that if you are holding another on your lap...

Keep the faith with solids, it should help. Ds is 11 months and finally taking more in, hope its not that long for yours obviously!

SinicalSal Fri 24-Jun-11 15:28:40

That sounds like hard work.
Personally at this stage, and in these circs I'd be cutting back, perhaps a couple of bfs a day, and expressing for bottles.
IMVHO it seems it's more an attention thing than feeding so maybe they'd take more at a time from the bottles and solids once they learn they can still get individual attention without the breast.

MamaChocoholic Fri 24-Jun-11 15:37:47

Albrecht, good idea to try compressions, massage, flapping etc. I'll either use my handy spare pair of hands grin or find some other way. (there's always another way). how easily I've forgotten the tools of the early days!

not keen on expressing, but it could be about needing one on one attention, true. not that they get it if they're both feeding at once mind.

liquorice, I'd be interested to know how you got your ds to 5/6 feeds a day - did it just happen naturally or did you do something deliberate?

RitaMorgan Fri 24-Jun-11 18:06:01

I don't have twins either, but what worked with ds for getting a longer break in the morning was giving him to his dad. I did a big feed first thing and then went back to bed with strict instructions that I wasn't to be disturbed for 2.5 hours. His dad then gave him a big breakfast of weetabix/porridge with lots of cow's milk, plus a banana, and just had to entertain him until 9.30am.

sc2987 Fri 24-Jun-11 18:30:55

Could you swap breasts after they've finished the first one (obviously one might have to wait if they're both feeding at once)? As maybe your storage capacity is on the low side, so giving them more might keep them full for longer. The supply would soon adjust to the alternate swapping, even if it's hard to remember which one each twin should be on now!

thisisyesterday Fri 24-Jun-11 18:37:17

i was in a similar situation to you OP.

i only had one baby, but he was still feeding every 45-90 minutes day and night at 9 months old!!!!!
thankfully I didn't also have another one to try and jiggle and console while feeding him or i think i would truly have gone mad

my saviour was: the no-cry sleep solution, by elizabeth pantley
I introduced a dummy and a comforter, the dummy took a long time for him to accept (about 4-6 weeks), we'd give it to him during the day to play with and then after a while he decided he quite liked sucking it while he was happy but only boob would do when he wasn't, and eventually he would accept it at night occasionally.

I know not everyone wants to do the whole dummy thing, esp if you get so far without one, but i'll be honest and say it saved me. I was going spare with lack of sleep and if i was in the same position again I would introduce one again, even though at 3.5 we're having trouble weaning him from it!

I'd really recommend buying the pantley book though, it's not a quick-fix, but it does work

thisisyesterday Fri 24-Jun-11 18:38:13

btw, giving a big bottle of expressed milk, or a big bowl of porridge or anything like that made NO difference at all. he just wanted to feed frequently and needed the comfort.
so once I had got him to accept alternative forms of comfort (by way of puppy blanket and dummy) it all got a lot better

MamaChocoholic Fri 24-Jun-11 18:39:03

would that make a difference sc? say if dt1 has left, dt2 has right, I then swap dt2 to left and dt1 to right? worth a try! I did wonder if it's to do with the onesided feeding, but then I think each side must be producing enough for one baby, and then I go round in circles ...

Rita, dp normally at work, but I could try harder at distraction myself. I suspect I feed sometimes as the easiest way to simultaneously entertain two babies. did pushing this gap in the morning help him go longer other times too do you think?

MamaChocoholic Fri 24-Jun-11 18:43:27

good ideas tiy. have been trying to introduce comforters by having something with them in their cots, but they either play with it before sleep (dt1) or throw it out of the cot (dt2). did only the dummy help space feeds in the day or did comforter help too? I have tried dummies in the past, always rejected, and like you say, having got this far I am somewhat reluctant to introduce one now, especially as I have a friend who has to get up every 30 mins to find the dummy through the night.

RitaMorgan Fri 24-Jun-11 18:52:51

I kind of got into a bit of a routine with food and naps so the opportunities to ask for a feed were less I suppose - so DP had him til 9.30, then he'd have a feed and a nap, then another feed, then lunch, then go out somewhere, then a feed, then a nap, then dinner, then a bath etc etc. He always wanted to feed more if we were hanging round at home not doing much so I think it was more of a boredom/attention thing than comfort for him - if I kept busy there was less opportunity.

He also had a dummy though as TIY suggests - I can often fob him off with that if he's just a bit bored and whingy, especially late afternoons. I had to experiment with a couple of different kinds though to find one he liked. We did have a phase of him waking up lots in the night looking for it around 6 months but by 9 months he was dexterous enough to put it back in himself. He still wakes up once or twice a night most nights, but more to just hear a voice or a hand on him for reassurance I think - I reckon he'd do that whether he had a dummy or not.

RitaMorgan Fri 24-Jun-11 18:55:38

Oh and the big breakfast wasn't so much that it stopped him asking for a feed, it was more that I was confident he wasn't hungry - he can be comforted/entertained without a boob sometimes!

thisisyesterday Fri 24-Jun-11 18:57:45

for ds2 the comforter and dummy came as a package, so he wasn't really interested in one without the other.
i used to make sure he had it every time he had a feed, so he would associate it with me and being comforted and going to sleep...

i'll be honest, for a long time it didn't cut down the amount of times he woke at night, but instead of feeding him i could just put the dummy back in, so i did get a bit more sleep and felt less like i was just being used for my milk grin it also meant that DP could comfort him sometimes

also found that doing stuff helped, having him out in the pushchair usually meant a longer gap between feeds because he was distracted, so maybe a 2/3 pronged approach is needed???

MamaChocoholic Fri 24-Jun-11 19:23:23

oh tiy this will be a multi pronged approach grin

I'm loving all the ideas here, thanks, and I will cogitate on them tonight to begin with a PLAN by Monday. Almost certainly it will include
- getting more in at each feed (compressions etc, switching sides),
- distraction to get them to go at least 2 hours, although I'm not sure how that will work after a feed. I normally feed before a nap, then again on waking as they don't nap well and can wake grumpy, and a quick bf is the easiest way to fix that. maybe just push to feed only before and after naps? that would be manageable...
- read up on comforters/dummies and decide how/whether to introduce.

thisisyesterday Fri 24-Jun-11 19:26:24

try offering a snack on waking? or cup of juice?

MamaChocoholic Fri 24-Jun-11 19:38:06

ooh, that's an idea. will have biscuits, fruit and water at the ready! but even if that doesn't work, a target of feeding just before/after naps would suit me (they don't feed to sleep hardly ever now, but sleep better with full tummies).

liquoriceandtomatoes Sat 25-Jun-11 10:42:27

Mama you ask how I got him down to 5/6 feeds a day.

At about 7mnths I started with the pantley pull off - did that for quite a few weeks to stop breast/sleep connection, then did a lot of pick up/put down to comfort, 'till he was down to one night feed (which has now gone) and just really went all out to give a long feed before bed and a very long feed in the morning - I did this over a good few weeks and am not saying it's for everyone but since you asked. It just took a while and no doubt much easier with one ds. Plus he just started eating more food around this time too. Now I have set times which I never had before but if he pulls at my top etc then I always feed him but since his growth spurt has just stopped he seems happy with the current 5 long-ish feeds: 1 waking, 1 after morning nap, 1 pre-lunch nap, 1 afternoon nap, 1 pre-bed. And when the next growth spurt hits, I'll feed him whenever and increasingly.

Maybe I was was just a lot firmer as I'd reached my own point, so it's possibly a mental leap on our part and they somehow get the message. when he was ill recently I spent hours cuddling him rather than feeding - some extra feeding but really not much. I personally wouldn't go down the dummy route either at this stage. Lots of luck to you, let us know how it goes.

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