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Demand feeder at nursery and carrying on bf after 1 with stressy job!! Sorry a bit long

(16 Posts)
southeastlondonmum Fri 22-Jul-11 10:48:57

I have been lurking on these threads for some time now. All the advice and experiences have really helped me continue to exclusively breastfeed DD for nine months. Thanks everyone.

I totally respect women who ff but for a whole variety of reasons its not for me so hence this post is about expressing and continuing bf!

I am going back to work in September three days a week, then four days a week from October. Eventually I will go back full time hours but I am not thinking about that yet!!

DD takes milk from a cup as long as it is not me offering and starts at nursery in a few weeks two days a week for settling in. I was planning to express for August and September (My job means I am often out and about in the day but reckon I can just about manage to fit in one express session in a day) and then as soon as we hit October and DD will be 11.5 months I will move her on to cows milk.

Until recently I was planning on stopping at 1, but feel quite inspired by people here to carry on a bit longer...possibly til 2 or until she stops herself. smile

On top of the health benefits to her, supportive DH and the fact we both enjoy it, I have no plans for a second as yet and suffered from endrometriosis in the past and am enjoying the lack of AF at the moment!

Can I therefore ask a couple of questions.
1. DD is demand fed and other than throwing herself backwards on me (LOVE IT) doesn't really have any signs that nursery can pick up on. She is not really in a pattern and is BLW so sometimes eats loads and sometimes not. Should I try and put her in a pattern that fits nursery schedule now? Other people's experiences with this?

2. Is it possible to continue to bf beyond a year just morning and evening with a stressy job (and I guess a bit more at the weekend)? I will occasionally be away over night and sometimes not get back in time for bed. When I have gone out in the past DH gives her a cup before putting her down. Its not as good as mummy but she is ok with it. What are the pros and cons of carrying on? Did it become a stress or was it really nice? Be honest.

3. Does carrying on beyond 1 make it harder to stop in the future? I have heard that it is harder for them to give it up if you do this but that might be crap.
Sorry that was a bit long. Really appreciate all experiences...

South East London Mum x

RitaMorgan Fri 22-Jul-11 10:54:54

My ds is 11.5 months now, and I have cut down to breastfeeds just morning and evening with cups of cow's milk in the day - so far it seems to be fine. At nursery they have a cup of milk at morning snack time, so I have been replicating that at home - he just does 2 mornings at the moment but will be 5 mornings from September. I've been doing meals/snacks at nursery times too.

Obviously ds is not 1 yet, but I have been away overnight or for a weekend a couple of times recently and it hasn't been a problem.

southeastlondonmum Fri 22-Jul-11 11:05:06

Thanks Rita. V useful- did you express while you were away?

dinkystinky Fri 22-Jul-11 11:07:22

To answer question 2- yes it is, I bf DS2 morning and night feeds only till he was just over 2 with stressy job etc.

RitaMorgan Fri 22-Jul-11 11:09:09

No, didn't express - never get more than a few drops from hand expressing and nothing from a pump! Was a bit uncomfortable by the time I got home but no ill effects luckily.

VeronicaCake Fri 22-Jul-11 12:22:21

We had a mealtime routine from the point we started weaning. But did BLW too so the amount DD ate varied wildly day-to-day. When I went back to work DH continued to offer expressed breastmilk or formula on demand. I'm not sure if a nursery will feel able to do that, but they are normally keen to offer frequent drinks, so can't imagine this will be a problem. You may find she is very influenced by the children around her, so if they have a clear snacktime /mealtime routine she'll adapt to this quite readily. DD used to make up for lost time with me at the weekends!

I'm a university lecturer, often travel for conferences, exam boards etc. I didn't find carrying on breastfeeding when I returned to work at 8m too hard. Though it helped that DD was with her Dad for the first 3m and only started with a childminder at 11m. In DD's case there was a very sudden point around 11m when she 'got' food and the amount of milk she drank rapidly declined. She stayed on morning and evening feeds from then until 14m when health reasons forced us to wean.

No idea about the general experience but I think weaning at 14m was harder for me (because I didn't actually want to stop) than it was for DD. DH started taking her up to bed to play and have a cup of milk and I just stayed out of the way at bedtime for a couple of weeks. Then he got her up in the morning at the time I usually fed her for a few days. Then she pretty much stopped asking.

hildathebuilder Fri 22-Jul-11 12:31:05

I returned when DS was 6 months corrected. I'm a lawyer with a very busy job. I went back full time. In my view

1. Absolutely no point in trying to get DD into a pattern now. Leave it to nursery, as whatever you do now will have changed/will change/will not work as you are not with DD in nursery.

2. Yes absolutely its possible. And In my view easy and nice. It also let DS decide when he had had enough. He dropped his evening feed at about 13 months actual (10 ish corrected) and morning is now about twice a week (he's 16 and a half months actual now). He did it as his pace and all children are different. It also really helps when he is ill etc as it gives comfort - and he is ill more now he's at nursery.

3. No, DS did what DS wanted (always has - I learnt that when he came 11 weeks early!)

southeastlondonmum Fri 22-Jul-11 12:33:11

Thanks Dinkystinky and Rita Morgan really encouraging.
Veronica Cake-everytime I think DD has got food, we have a meal and she doesn't eat a thing! My puree friends reckon she eats more than their babies but she rarely eats breakfast and eats me instead. I am really worried that she will be starving at nursery.

The nursery are very flexible and child centred and they stick to their babies schedules at the start. They did tell me though that naturally over time they move to the nursery's schedule though....

southeastlondonmum Fri 22-Jul-11 12:44:05

Also really useful hildathebuilder (though clearly you are not a builder, but reckon that would also have its own challenges...:-)

I know this is not the case for everyone, but apart from the first few days and a bit of thrush later on bf has been easy. So I was hoping that this would continue but rather wondered that I might have a rosetinted view of how it would work....

Most people I know thing I am mad to carry on...

mousymouse Fri 22-Jul-11 12:45:06

went back to work when dd was 9 months old.
I did try to give her a bottle but she wasn't interested and I didn't want to stress us both out.
blw as well and she hardly took in any food.
talked about it at length with her key worker and this is what we did:
- dd was offered formula at the usual nursery times, sometimes she would take it sometimes not or only little
- water was available on demand
- finger foods or loaded spoons were offered at meal times
- I bf her when I came in from work (in the nursery)

it took her about a week to get the hang of beeing daytime-weaned but she settled in quickly and is now a happy and cheeky 19m.

Imo don't get stressed beforehand if expressing isn't for you. the nursery will help you and dd with the transition, just talk to them.

mousymouse Fri 22-Jul-11 12:47:20

btw, I weaned her off my boobs just a month ago...

southeastlondonmum Fri 22-Jul-11 12:54:43

Well done mousymouse for going so longer. Interesting what you say because when I have left her with DH or friends in the day she tends not to take much milk and just make up for it at home so she might go down that route. Which would could mean less expressing smile

VeronicaCake Fri 22-Jul-11 12:55:12

The 'getting' food was very sudden for us. At 9m DD was still having a feed at 5 and another at 7 before I left for work, then a bottle at 9 before her nap, another before lunch, another one mid afternoon, then a breastfeed when I got home around 6, another at bedtime round 7:30 and a dreamfeed at 10ish. Plus breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks! Sometime between 11 and 12m she dropped the 5am and 10pm breastfeeds and all the daytime bottles. But she started to really pack in the food.

If you feel confident the nursery is good they won't leave her to starve. She may reverse cycle a bit and prefer to wait to feed from you when you return to work initially as she adjusts to the new routine. But she will be fine.

Cosmosis Fri 22-Jul-11 17:40:07

it's really common for babies to take less milk in the day when you've gone back to work and then make up for it at night, it's called reverse cycling.

On the one hand, less expressing is handy if you have a demanding job, on the otherhand, more night wakings less so!

I'm sure you'll both adapt fine, I am now back at work ft and Ds (10m) and I have both adapted well.

coldcomfortHeart Fri 22-Jul-11 17:48:10

Can only answer Q3- DS1 stopped bf with a bit of persuasion at 2years 2 months. He was only feeding at bedtime by then, for a shorter time each night, and stopping was really easy.

Glad MN has made you more aware of/open to feeding for longer, that was my experience too (I had thought 9 months was aaages before I had a baby and discovered MN!)

southeastlondonmum Fri 22-Jul-11 18:17:02

Hmmmm. Important point Cosmosis -Don't like the idea of reverse cycling... sad
ColdcomfortHeart- I reckon tonnes of people carry on but don't admit it. I live in inner city london and loads of children are still being bf at baby and toddler groups at 18 months-2 or older. It's brilliant. But most of my baby group stoppped yonks ago and my ILS were slightly taken back by my plans to feed til 1 so if I carry on I think they will be aghast...

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