Breastfeeding 3rd child - how do you fit in ?(13 Posts)
I'm just coming to terms with a suprise pregnancy - not sure how I feel about it but trying to confront my individual fears.
I'm not an expert breastfeeder, stopped after 4 weeks and hospitalisation with DC1, managed to 6 months with DC2 but really struggled.
What I can't get my head around is how to fit breastfeeding in the early weeks when feeding can be so slow, around school runs and activities. Will have to be at school for 8.45, 12 (nursery pick up for DC2) and 3.20. Normally DC2 would have playdates in the afternoon, DC1 has lots of activities which involve getting changed and me being quite hands on - babymoon it won't be!
A friend who has just had her 3rd has said her elder children have become hostages to her breastfeeding which isn't ideal and another gave up after her DH went back to her work ?
There must be a middle ground ? Any ideas ?
I'm going to be facin gthis situation in 6 months. All I can say to you is get a wrap sling. Then you can just pop baby in, whip out a boob, and you're good to go. Noone can see anything, baby will be happy, and you can get on with everything else. I had one with my second and found it an absolute lifesaver.
I seem to be managing with DC3 (12 weeks).
DCs 1 & 2 (age 5 and 2) don't seem to be hostages (not sure that was an entirely helpful comment there) and we all get to school and nursery on time. I bf on demand, always have. Can't do schedules.
I will say all mine have been very fast feeders - 10-15 mins and you're done, maybe a bit longer in the very early days. I am also willing to bf anywhere, and have sat in the school playground feeding.
Maybe third DC end up crying a bit more, waiting a bit longer and just having to fit in. Half a feed before nipping out is better than no feed...
Congrats on your pregnancy!
A few things spring to mind.. for example, that BF will probably be easier next time.. you will recognise problems quickly and know where to go for help.
Your other kids will be 7/8/ 9 months older and that bit more autonomous..
Babies can mould quite well into a family setup too.. I used to wake DS for an early feed, stick him in the sling when I was taking DD to nursery and have our babymoon time when I got back.
Summer hols will be almost upon you when your baby comes.. a less set routine.
Playdates and the likes can wait for a few weeks til you get comfortable enough to feed with baby in a sling..
Get your children's friends' parents to help with school runs etc a bit in the beginning.
Feed anywhere and everywhere.. enjoy!
And congratulations - I hope your surprise DC brings you as much joy as my surprise DC is bringing me!
What did you struggle with re bf last time? Did you get any support or is it a bit lacking where you are?
Thanks for the replies.
Yes sling good idea!
Problems with DC1 weren't just breastfeeding as much as failure to thrive generally - in the womb and once born. Fit as a fiddle now thankfully.
My fear probably comes from DS2 being such a slow feeder and a winter baby which meant needed to find an indoor spot to feed amidst the screaming (I don't have a car during the week). I remember being late in the morning for DC1 going to nursery alot - fortunately nursery very understanding but even by 5 months a feed could take an hour, he was very very fussy, even now he takes for ever to eat a meal and picks for ages. DC1 is now in Year 3 and its not acceptable to be late because of a baby feeding.
Will have to enlist help from friends for school runs in the very early days although hopefully things will move forward quickly.
with 13 months between ds2 and ds3 and ds 1 at nursery then school within the first 6 months - it was a demanding time - but breastfeeding definitely the easiest option - it's on tap which is always a winner in my book. Personally, demand feeding didn't really work for me I've always been a 7,11,3,7,11 feeder - taking around 20 - 25 minutes each time. I was able to tweak that by half an hour or so as necessary with what we had on in the day. I found having a basic routine in place allowed us the freedom to meet each of the children's needs and organise play dates at times that meant the older children could play and I knew I could sit and feed before lunch and tea for example.
DC4 is just 3 weeks old and was just 1 week when DC3 (5) went to school. So far things have gone relatively well with feeds and getting to school on time, out and about etc. DS definately does just fit in with our daily life.
I think I have been much more relaxed this time too and DS2 is an absolute dream baby so it's has all worked really well. I hope things are the same for you.
I felt exactly the same as you when I was expecting DC3 last year having also experienced problems bf DS1 and 2. But DD was a dream to feed and there were no problems at all.
I would recommend getting in as much help as you can in the early days from any source possible particularly while you are getting feeding established.
A word of warning: as much as I admire ladies like Peekmum who clearly have a fantastic and massively abundant milk supply and who are able to bf to a 4 hour schedule, I have to say that this wouldn't be realistic for everyone. All women I know in RL who have tried to bf to a 4 hour schedule have all - bar none- ended up with skinny babies and poor milk supply.
Thanks so much everyone - you've been really reassuring. Just what's needed. Am thinking how I can draft in extra help...bit tricky.
Am feeling awful for my friend who said her elder children were 'kept hostage' by breastfeeding. Hope she doesn't recognise herself from the comment (she's very lovely! She didn't say it to put me off. She's very committed to bf and had had problems before so in the summer term she cancelled elder dc's activities and hsd no playdates to make sure bf was established. That really unsettled me as my DCs are very very active and I can't see myself doing that to them. Her turn of phrase was more humorous than annoyed but freaked me out!
Was easiest with no.3! I tandem fed 2 & 3 for 3 months, just in the morning. Found dd3 fed around 5ish, so I could feed dd2 (16months) in bed before getting up around 7, then fed dd3 again downstairs while others eating breakfast (had mine then too). In the first week or two we sometimes had an extra feed on the way to school (hated car, 12 min drive, had to stop), or at car park before or after dropping (dd1 started school when dd3 5 days). After that we could manage without that! Key to surviving was preparing breakfast and clothes, packed lunches the night before. Sling and single pushchair helped with morning school run too. Occasionally fed in sling - more use when pushing a swing than trying to get dd1 & 2 dressed, etc.
Hard to believe it didn't feel too bad, looking back! To be honest, for us, the first 6 months were easier than the following. It's all easier again now the youngest is 5. dd3 went on to 1 nap a day younger than the others, to fit with school runs really, as she didn't sleep in the car. Was a pain! Had to get her down by 12.30 to allow 2 hours before we went again. Was hard.
I found no.3 the easiest of all re bf. The main thing was that by third time around I really knew what clothing worked well for easiest access and most coverage (basically tight V neck vest underneath a baggier top, so the baggy top was pulled up and v neck vest pulled down leaving nothing on show), which meant I was more confident about feeding wherever I was. Whatever night waking had gone on I tended to get DC3 up at about 6.45 and bring him into bed with me to feed, then the DCs 1&2 up 7.15 ish and leave house 8.30 ish for nursery run. I also had 12pm nursery pick up and DS adjusted to me feeding him when I needed to to tie in with the school run - I always made sure that wherever he was he'd had a good feed late morning so was happy to do the pick up and sort out lunch for the older two before needing another feed. DD1 started full days at reception when DS was a few months old so then I had 2 separate morning drop offs plus a 12pm and 3.15pm pick up to contend with. He was v adaptable and so was I. He spent an awful lot of time in a sling which he totally loved, just generally attached to me but basically ignored as I got on with everything else.
You can't be late for school due to feeds, you have to just get on with it and if the baby is grumpy or fussing for a feed then so be it - you'll soon get into the swing of making sure that you give a pre-emtive feed or a quick top up feed at the right time giving yourself enough time to get on and out and do the school run and the baby will soon get used to and expect that routine. Actually I found with no. 3 we had a really great routine really early on as we were kind of forced into it by the school run and other needs of the older two, and he soon got the hang of it. Sling is v good as even if the baby is a bit grumpy and hungry they are usually fairly content snuggling up to you.
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