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Tandem nursing-toddler problem, help!

(6 Posts)
BazilGin Sun 06-Jul-14 16:20:57

Hi, I am looking for advice from tandem nursers. I am cureently feeding my 3 week old DS and nearly 3 year old DD. My DD was generally only down to 3 sessions a day, but since her baby brother arrived, she asks to nurse all the time and refuses other food. I want to accomodate her as much as I can, but I find myself snapping, distracting, refusing because I just can't feed her as much. I tried bf both at the same time, but I don't find it comfortable, so I nurse one after other. DS nurses all the time so I can see why she is behaving like that, but what should I do?

Also, I have no idea what to do with food refusal, we have tantrums at dinner, she doesn't even want to sit at the table. I am feeling more and more anxious about tandem and sometimes wish I!d weaned her.

combust22 Sun 06-Jul-14 16:40:19

I tandem fed for two and a half years. Some of it was idyllic,some of it was very challenging.

Your feelings are very normal.

Your older child has some big adjustments to make- having a sibling is a big deal for any child, breastfeeding or not.

Some positive approaches may help. I am sure you already involve your toddler in "helping" with baby,but making your DD feel involved and responsible will help.
It is early days and your DD will be enjoying the "milkfest" as your supply won't have been so abundant for a long while.
You feeling "antsy" is totally understandable.

Mealtimes can be difficult, again I would suggest making your toddler feel grown up and responsible. Buy some special metal cutlery, let your DD cut up food - with supervision with a sharp knife. Let her explain to baby that he can't eat this food as he isn't old enough.

Spend time alone with your DD if you can. talk to her about her special position in the family- she is the child that turned you into a Mummy, she is your first born, she is your daughter. Tell her how big your heart is.

Just some ideas- and congratulations. X

BazilGin Sun 06-Jul-14 17:15:36

Thanks Combust, your post made me well up, I am still so hormonal. Did you limit your older nursling on the breast? I don't want to give her mixed messages, but sometimes I just have to say 'not now' because otheriwse I am becoming more resentful towards her. I try to give her extra reassurance and cuddles, but she is really testing my limits. I am also feeling very guilty I can't give her so much attention anymore.

combust22 Sun 06-Jul-14 17:30:58

Don't feel guilty- you are doing a brilliant job as a Mum.

Yes I did limit my older child. Often I would set up an activity for my toddler- often something banal like threading pasta shapes before nursing or put on a video.

Or read to your toddler while nursing your baby. I kept a stash of books from the library for these occasions.

I also found a sling brilliant- I used a wrap around ring sling, so able to breastfeed without being obvious, and gave me two free hands to do a jigsaw, even a trip to the park or a walk without my toddler realising what was happening.
It is important that your DS gets the lions share of the milk- and I did use limiting techniques with my toddler- he would nurse until we sang a verse of a nursery rhyme or counted to 20.
THis made him feel secure that he could breastfeed when he felt the need, but often "touching base" was enough for that he needed.

BazilGin Sun 06-Jul-14 19:43:04

Thanks Combust, I don't know anyone else who tandem feeds so thank you for reassurance. I was really beginning to doubt myself. I am going to stick to giving my DD longer session first thing and before bed to keep her routine. The rest of the time I will carry on limiting/distracting/doing whatever feels right at the time.
I borrowed a ring sling fom a friend, but I haven't tried it yet. Need to give it a go!

poocatcherchampion Wed 09-Jul-14 22:50:23

I tandem feed.

I found my older one grew out of it after a few more weeks. I hate simultaneously feeding too although I still occasionally do it when they are both whinging in the morning and neither want to wait.

it will improve!!

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