Breast feeding crisis - I don't think I can do this...(15 Posts)
I posted the other day and got some fabulous advice.
I had a bad start with BF, had to top up, but had got off the top ups. I'm on day 6 and still only producing colostrum. We are managing 2 20 min sessions every few hours.
Here's the problem, it still hurts, and if I'm honest I hate it. I have to use both hands and haven't found a position where my bum doesn't go numb. I know the pain is to do with latch.
I really want to do the best for DD and know that I'm making huge improvements with the BFing.
BUT everytime I pick her up age cries and roots. If it didn't hurt I would latch her on, but when she's feeding I feel miserable. I now feel like I can't cuddle her.
(Please be gentle, I'm very hormonal!)
Can you feed her laying down on a bed? For me it was a really natural way to feed DS, his latch seemed better too, I was hopeless at getting him on. I know it feels horrid, I have memories of wincing and biting my hand as I got him on, it is a skill you both need to learn, but with her wanting to latch so often it may help. Have you got a breast pump?
It gets better, really. And it does hurt, and it will continue to hurt until your boobs get used to it, at which point it will be super-easy.
The problem with bf is that no one tells you the first weeks are awful, and so everyone has fluffy and soft focus expectations.
It really is worth it if you persevere, honestly. Latch her on when she needs to feed. Usually it only hurts at the start, and eases when they settle to feed.
At 6 days, I would guess it's just the newness of everything. It can hurt until everything settles even if the latch is good. If you know it is the latch, call your local bf service and get someone to come out and help. Do you have a friend or sister that has bf?
Be kind to yourself x (and congratulations!!!)
are you using lansinoh at every feed? have you called any of the headlines, I'll post links in a bit just dealing with bedtime
Lying down can help with the needing two hands thing. As can a decent breast-feeding pillow. I had a big V-shaped one, and did eventually get to the point where I could latch the baby on then have both hands free to read a book and have a drink.
You're still very early days, and you're doing brilliantly. It can get so much better. I was where you are
10 years ago and, with DH's encouragement, persisted. I got to the point where I actively enjoyed feeding the baby, and kept going to 10 months old (and bfed 2 subsequent babies for a longer time). Even with the other 2 babies, it was still toe-curling when they were latching on at the start.
Oh, and the NCT breastfeeding line and counsellors were fabulous.
Controversial - but if you hate it, give up. I did, due to horrendous mastitis which resulted in an op when DD was 6 weeks. Never looked back. Both DD and I were much happier.
Can you look up you tube for biological nurturing or laid back bf. I found that best early on. Then get a box set, order in food put a cardigan or dressing gown on and let baby have the easiest possible access to boobs with skin to skin. Give the baby control of the latch and timings and you watch tv for the whole evening. It sounds very unproductive and hippyish but it is incredibly effective. Laid back gives the bAby the best chance of a good latch and you get to relax. This only lasts a very short time until milk is up and running.
It does hurt at the beginning. It's not always to do with a bad latch which some may disagree but I had horrible crater nipples with my second baby and I knew the latch was fine. The midwife was convinced I was doing it wrong when she saw me but realised I wasn't when I showed her.
The reward is if baby is feeding well and gaining weight. If they are not it'd so hard and you're hormonal and exhausted. It's such a difficult time. I watched lots of videos on you tube and Jack Newman is amazing - really helpful.
Ultimately though if you are unhappy and struggling don't feel guilty about formula. There's more to being a good mum than how you feed your baby! My first child was formula fed and my second had breast I'll for a year. The decisions I made were the best suited for me and them at the time. Good luck x
I second figuring out lying down, it saved me a lot of back and wrist problems, plus it was quiet and I got some rest.
Is she six days old? This is a classic time for you to feel this way, and could be a sign that your milk will be coming in. So although crap for you right now, it's another step along the road of being a parent.
Make sure she is latched on properly, take a deep breath and and count to ten, breathing out. Has the discomfort stopped? I f so it's your nipples getting used to bfing, if not, it's the latch.
Why not take to your bed for a couple of days if possible and try nesting with her, skin to skin, learn her cues etc so she isn't crying when you feed her- which makes it harder and more stressful.
Obviously you should potter around if you want to but I felt an enormous amount of pressure to Get Back To Normal, and insisted on withdrawing to my bed at times.
Best of luck, take it easy on yourself and your dd.
I couldn't manage feeding lying down at all and the midwives kept encouraging it which made it hard for me to get started. When I got home I tried the rugby ball hold which I found much easier. Later on I preferred cross-cradle.
I also found it got easier by feeding as much as possible - this brought the milk in quicker as well and once that started flowing freely, it all went a lot more smoothly. Definitely recommend Lansinoh in frequent and lavish applications!
So I would try to feed as often as possible, try different positions, put on plenty of Lansinoh and - hardest of all - relax about it. I found it easier to breastfeed when I gave myself permission to formula feed - I thought, right, no harm will come to my baby if I ff so I'll see how this goes and switch without guilt if I want to. Once I wasn't pressuring myself, I was able to keep going 'just another feed', 'just another night', 'just another week', 'just til six weeks' and suddenly it was so easy and lovely and simple I went on for 14 months. Take it feed by feed and try not to let it spoil your precious time with your newborn.
The complicating factor is that we have a rather lively dog, so I can't be naked on the sofa with her if you see what I mean.
It is getting better, and have decided to keep going til Sunday, as DH is back to work Monday and the. Are how we are getting on.
Really thanks again!
Can you get someone to see you face to face and give you some help? It might just need a small adjustment to make things better.
Please don't put up with the pain though...please seek help-you are still under midwife care I guess or you could ask to see the infant feeding specialist.
A cardigan with a vest top under will work just as well. Plenty of easy access. Day by day is definitely best.
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