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Breastfeeding struggles

(15 Posts)
jazzfan Wed 11-Dec-13 01:32:16

Hi all, I'm a first time Mum and mumsnetter with a beautiful 16 day old baby girl. Have been breastfeeding since day one. Been observed bf'ing by 4 different professionals in the last week now who all say she is feeding 'beautifully' 'good latch' etc. (2 midwives 1 health visitor and a Bambi).
I feel like she feeds really well and actively most of the time. However she has been struggling putting weight on; she's a tiny thing anyway. Lost weight, put it on, lost weight again. She reached 10% loss of her body weight; very frustrating as I'm being told I'm doing everything right. She has jaundice they're keeping an eye on, and apparently this can cause the baby to struggle with her weight as she's battling it off.

I'm feeding 'on demand' as everyone tells me to; however the baby has not been asleep since 4pm this afternoon, and only for an hour then. She's been feeding, honest to god, constantly since then. No breaks except when I make her so I can wee or something, and she screams while I'm gone - I feel like a human pacifier. It's 1.30 in the morning now and I've left her to cry herself to sleep in the bedroom and feel just awful. (She's still crying so it's not working.) One midwife told me to leave her between feeds for two hours so I can build my milk back up - the opposite of demand feeding and I don't see how I could possibly leave her to scream for that long. So I'm allowing her to suck away, but she has sessions where it is six or seven hours she's hungrily snacking away for. I am at the end of my tether with breastfeeding now and part of me wants to give up. What can I do?

fuckwittery Wed 11-Dec-13 01:39:19

Sweetie, dont leave her to cry unless its for a wee or 5 minutes to catch your breath if you have to. Its not working and making you feel shit. She's only tiny and crying on you pacing the room is better than crying it out. This is totally normal newborn behaviour and its completely normal for them not to go two hours between feeds. She's probably overtired and overwrought as well, have you tried swaddling and pacing while jiggling, or do you have a sling? Don't put her down until she's fast fast asleep (arms totally floppy when you raise them), might take a few false starts, and if she wants to feed again let her.

fuckwittery Wed 11-Dec-13 01:41:01

Meant to say, this bfing constantly thing will pass, tomorrow is a new day and I bet she'll be more settled after her marathon feed today. All this feeding will increase your milk production so you're doing a great job.

goodbyeyellowbrickroad Wed 11-Dec-13 01:47:04

Sounds to me like she might be hitting the 3 week growth spurt a little earlier. It's exhausting but her wanting to feed so often will increase your supply. I'd be inclined to ignore the midwife that's told you to leave her for 2 hours in between feeds.

Go and pick her up and give her a cuddle. Do you have a DP or DH there that can help even if its morale support for you? Have you tried feeding in bed lying down? Would mean that you could get some rest whilst she feeds.

You're doing a fantastic job.

jazzfan Wed 11-Dec-13 01:49:19

Hiya, yeah I've picked her up again now, couldn't cope, just thought it was the only thing I've never tried. I swaddle her often when she gets like this and it usually calms her but she's having none of it! Have had several false starts with the putting down already; glad you say this is normal though as I was getting very worried. I mean 9 hours of constant feeding?? Seems crazy / wrong sad

fuckwittery Wed 11-Dec-13 01:52:54

Its not wrong, reassure yourslef she's doing exactly what she needs to get your milk supply increased,its just hard hard work for you! Mum of three so I promise I've been there and if you can get through this tomorrow will be another day.
I usually found by the time I got tot the stage of a panicky posting on mumsnet it was nearly over and the baby would conk out soon after, also you might get the treat of a marathon sleep after all this smile

jazzfan Wed 11-Dec-13 02:02:29

Thanks very much fuckwittery and goodbyeyellowbrickroad, that does make me feel better! You only have to google jaundice or 10% body loss to frighten yourself...real fast.
I don't know all the abbreviations..but yes I have moral support..think I needed to hear it from someone who's 'been there done that', though to stop the worry.
I am, actively, ignoring that midwife as it seemed opposite to what baby actually wants.
Ha! Hope I get a marathon's my birthday tomorrow :D
Thanks again guys.

fuckwittery Wed 11-Dec-13 02:17:01

DH and DP is dear husband or dear partner. (Sometimes not so "dear" when they are snoring away while the baby screams!)
I was at breastfeeding clinic the other week (have 7 week old third baby) and the midwife there (hugely experienced breastfeeding specalista) said that babies lay on fat stores before birth in order to lose weight as is expected after birth, and 10 per cent loss is very common and normal, although I know its meant to be in worrying if it persists after 2 weeks or is more than 10 per cent. Doesnt sound like that applies to you though, and you've done really well given her jaundice. Bet she will put on weight week with all the feeding. Just remember supply and demand with boobs, and there is rarely two days in a row as bad as this (I know I keep banging on about tomorrow being another day but it really is, and it will come, no baby has breastfed forever, and they do sleep eventually).
Hope you have a restful birthday and have some cake

fuckwittery Wed 11-Dec-13 02:19:12

Sorry, that was a bit rambling (am also tired! 7 week old asleep on me and I cant get to sleep!). When I said supply and demand I'm sure you know but the demand (feeding) is helping to increase your supply and your boobs will catch up by tomorrow.

goodbyeyellowbrickroad Wed 11-Dec-13 02:27:35

Happy birthday for tomorrow. Hope there's lots of cake

Is there a breastfeeding cafe anywhere near you? I found popping to one incredibly helpful during the first 4 months or so. The one I went to had breastfeeding councellors, peer supporters and a lactation consultant along with other breastfeeding mums that you could share tales of feeding marathons with. The NCT website should list the ones that are in your area.

Another resource that you might like to lo

goodbyeyellowbrickroad Wed 11-Dec-13 02:30:21

You might want to look at kellymom. I still find it useful now with my 18 month old DS. It has a lot of evidence based info on there rather than anecdotal.

Here's a link:

AnythingNotEverything Wed 11-Dec-13 02:59:57

I agree with the posts above - this won't last long! DD is 7 weeks now and I promise breastfeeding is dead easy now.

DD had jaundice and we we're re admitted to hospital because if it. They explained that the bilirubin is basically pooed and weed out, so she needs the milk through her system to carry it away. Although if she's been awake for hours it doesn't sound like the jaundice is a problem!

Eat lots of cake, drink lots of water, apply Lansinoh liberally, and remember, this too shall pass.

Havinganose Wed 11-Dec-13 03:39:51

My ds wouldn't sleep At the start. Needed a sling to get him there. Then he'd have enough rest to do proper feed. Once he learned to sleep he could go from there.

You're doing great. Clean upturned baby finger in mouth can buy your boob a few minutes

3FrenchHenD19s Wed 11-Dec-13 03:43:52

Happy birthday! cake it's so exhausting but it sounds like you're doing a great job!

It's completely normal for your baby to feed for hours as everyone has said. Font worry about the waiting 2hrs between feeds. I was told to do this and tried to with DD1 and DS but it didn't work v well and bfeeding was much harder than it is now with DD2 who I've just fed when she's hungry. Keep feeding on demand and I promise it will soon get much easier.

I hope you've got some nice plans for your birthday and hopefully after today's mammoth feeding session you might get a bit if decent sleep.

fuckwittery Wed 11-Dec-13 12:14:37

Happy birhday! Did you get some sleep eventually

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