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Concerns about BF DS2

(4 Posts)
IWillOnlyEatBeans Thu 25-Oct-12 21:23:30

I am 31 weeks pregnant with DS2. DS1 is 2.8.

I BF DS1 for about a month and really struggled. I couldn't get him latched on correctly so feeds took forever and were incredibly painful.

I'd like to give BF another go with DS2 but have a couple of queries/concerns which are niggling at me - hopefully someone can help...

Fristly - If I do BF successfully, does it have to be on demand? I LOVED being able to get into a routine when I started to FF DS1 and TBH I'm not sure how I can juggle feeding on demand (which was approx every 30 mins with DS1!) and coping with a lively, energetic toddler (I am a SAHM). Just to clarify - when I say routine, I don't mean a rigid, GF-style military operation. More like the Baby Whisperer - feed every 3 hrs kind of thing...

Secondly - I saw sooo many of my BF-ing friends end up in scenarios where the only way their baby would be comforted/fall sleep was by feeding. This persisted well into toddlerhood for many. There's obviously nothing wrong with that is everyone is happy about it, but I'd rather avoid this if possible. However, I'm worried that I'll fall into the trap of 'my baby is unsettled/whining/crying, quick get my boob out' - so automatically assuming hunger rather than looking for other causes (I think I did this with DS1).

Any tips/advice/words of wisdom would be much appreciated...

monkeypuzzeltree Thu 25-Oct-12 22:17:44

I was in exactly the same position as you and with a toddler same age. I would say:

- different baby, totally different feeding experience, no pain, didn't think that was possible what a relief that was!
- feeding on demand - I really don't see how else you can do it, I know what you mean about the ff routine, but my son likes to feed every 2 hours and it generally takes 30 mins. It's just how he likes it and even if dh gives him the odd bottle at 11pm some days of I'm knackered it doesn't stop him waking a couple of hours later sometimes! I think you just have to see what you get!

- I'll be honest, having 2 does make for some madness, we're in the fourth month and it's only starting to make sense. It's hard work with 2 but I honestly don't feel bfing makes it any harder. And I say that as someone who ff my dd from 12 weeks, I am in no way precious about it! It is actually easier I find as I have one hand free, so can read a book, colour in, even help dd off the loo at a push, all while bfing! A sling has been brilliant!! especially when you're trying to keep up with toddler in the park and not abandon baby in pram!! It's also a lot quicker at the soft play to whip a boob out to feed while watching toddler tearing around than to start fiddling with milk cartons whilst holding a baby!

If it works for you then all I can say is I've found it a really lovely experience, felt I missed out last time. This time yes there have been hard times but I'm now thinking its easier. As for the settling thing - I know what you mean and to be honest it's only in the last month that I've really made myself check for the difference between hungry and tired cry, because it is easy to just feed to placate, it's working and he's got his own routine sorted out. So if he's tired, I stick them both in the pushchair and we go to the park, he zonked out and dd gets some fun!

Only flaw is the knowing when they've had enough - when you've been used to a bottle and KNOW! again, that's taken time for me to learn and trust. Need either boobs or baby with an empty/full sign!

HTHs and good luck with it all, it really is so special when they start interacting.

PoppyScarer Thu 25-Oct-12 22:22:02

Have you thought about mix-feeding? Done it with my DC2 and got the best of both worlds.

Also, try a dummy to avoid the human-dummy scenario.

Curtsey Thu 25-Oct-12 22:24:39

Hi! Congrats on your pregnancy.

I think it seems to be in the nature of babies to form habits and to find their own routines once they get to a certain age, whether you as their mum have decided it must be so or not! So - yeah, you probably do have to feed on demand for the first few months, but very soon the baby finds his or own pace and you can almost set your watch by him/her. Your routine can be about 'rituals', so, when baby is put down for the night, it is always after a bath (for example), it is always dark and quiet...Or you go for a walk with the pram and toddler in the morning, and baby has a sleep then.

Automatically getting your boob out every time baby so much as peeps is probably not a bad approach at all with a newborn, it's true. But what I found with mine was that at a certain point (just as I was kicking myself for having created a bad habit) she stopped accepting being fed to sleep. It just didn't work, so she had to learn other ways to find comfort. Wouldn't worry about that one too much. Lots of this stuff comes down to the baby's personality. smile

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