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Anyone successfully BF DC2 after not managing on first?

(18 Posts)
Cuppatea14 Mon 24-Nov-14 09:02:19

38 weeks pregnant on no.2 now, and starting to panic about feeding. On DD1 I was determined to BF, but really struggled. She wouldn't latch on at all in hospital. I stayed in for 3 days trying to get feeding established, and was completely overwhelmed by conflicting advise from every nurse who tried to help, and found myself fairly pummelled and pulled by some of the less sympathetic ones. Honestly the whole experience was a nightmare, although the majority were just trying to help. Saw the hospital lactaction consultant also but she couldn't get her to latch either. Anyway eventually had to start a combination of formula and expressed milk to get her weight up. I persevered for another 2 weeks at home, even getting a private lactation consultant to the house to try to help, no avail. Every feed took about 2 hours, between trying to latch her, failing, feeding her a bottle of expressed milk and then handing her over to DH while I expressed the next batch. Kept it up for 5 weeks and then switched to formula. She never latched on and no one was ever able to give me an explanation. The guilt of it not working really got to me. I had to switch off the tv/radio every time the ads came on ('everyone knows that breast is best for your baby') and felt quite isolated from all the breast feeding clubs and support groups, there were no support groups for us FF mums!

Anyway, fast forward 2 years and here we are again. The thoughts of even attempting to BF fills me with dread. I want to give this one the benefit of the first few weeks at least, but I can't see how I will be able to follow the same expressing regime with a 2 year old also needing my attention. Has anyone completely failed on the first and had better success on a subsequent baby? Pretty sure I have a complete mental block about the whole thing now which no doubt will hinder it even more...

GinAndSonic Mon 24-Nov-14 09:15:10

Me. Different circumstances.

Ds, things were ok for 3 weeks despite a slow to start supply, then i became v poorly and wasnt strong enough to look after him properly, stayed with my mum and my family formula fed him, i breastfed when i could and after 3 weeks he was almost exclusively ff. I tried to put him to the breast up to 12 weeks, before i accepted he was now ff.

Dd, everything went fine from the start, she barely lost any weight (ds lost a full pound in 5 days), and despite a few weeks of a lot of pain due to a slightly dodgy latch, we got everything straight quite quickly. I exclusivelu breastfed for 10months, then mainlu breast with some solids till about 14 months when her eating took off. I continued to feed on demand, and i just stopped feeding her in june this year. She turned 3 in september. She never had a bottle and never had formula. It was a completely different experience. I was gobsmacked at how different it was.

Good luck, but know that it makes no difference, feed your baby with love and the actual type of milk isnt all that important. Mimic bfing with formula. Do skin to skin, switch which side you hold them, hold them close, do most feeds etc, and you still get the benefits that breastFEEDING gives, even if you dont get the benefits of breastMILK.

FuckYouChrisAndThatHorse Mon 24-Nov-14 09:19:28

Almost identical circumstances to you, op. Dc1 never successfully latched, was a nightmare, battled on for 3 months, before finally giving in.

Dc2, latched straight away and never had any issues at all. Bf'd until he was 1 without any problems.

After all that heartache and struggle with dc1 it was only after dc2 that I finally accepted that it wasn't my fault!

Good luck! smile

FoxtrotOscarBackToEconomy Mon 24-Nov-14 18:43:54

I had a nightmare with DC1 that culminated in a breast abscess at 7 weeks and the end of breast feeding.

I planned to BF DC2 for a week but I'm still BFing her at 5 months old with no plans to stop. She latched so much better than DC1 ever did. She was EBF up until a couple of weeks ago when she started at the childminder - I'm expressing at work during the day but not enough to cover all the milk she needs when she's at the childminder so she has a couple of formula feeds a day.

Cuppatea14 Mon 24-Nov-14 20:08:59

Thanks all, good to hear that it's worked out well for people the second time around. In will definitely give it a shot again, but won't out myself through the same amount of guilt this time if it doesn't work out again. My major concern is it not working and how the hell expressing would work with a toddler to also take care of, I would like to give this one the benefits of the first few weeks at least.

Levismum Mon 24-Nov-14 20:35:18

It took my to dc6 before i successfully breastfed!

Dc 1,2&3 I didn't even attempt to bf.

Dc 4&5. Reflux, tongue & lip tie.mix fed til 6 weeks.

Dc6 ebf from birth with tongue tie & severe lip tie. Still bf at nearly 10 months.

My advice is every baby is different. Be realistic. Be kind to yourself. Try it, see how it goes & just take it a day at a time.
Good luck!

tinkerbellvspredator Mon 24-Nov-14 21:05:56

I had pretty much identical circumstances to you but am now ebf my 8 week old. DC2 is more sucky and latched on quickly, we have had issues and it's still sore but it looks like it's going to work out.

Get someone to properly check for tongue tie (physically fingers in mouth) as midwife and health visitor said there wasn't one but turns out DC2 had a posterior one.

ElphabaTheGreen Mon 24-Nov-14 21:26:46

Haven't had the same experience myself, but what I will say is if you have another baby with latching problems, don't use a bottle for feeds while you're still trying to work things out as it sounds like you did with your first. A poorly latching baby is not even going to consider the effort of a breast if you're giving them a nice easy latex teat. Ask someone to show you how to cup-feed, which you can do with either EBM or formula. Nipple shields and supplementary feeding systems are things to ask about if it happens again. Also look up biological nurturing on You Tube.

WRT expressing with a toddler around, DS1 is fascinated when I express and watches in rapt attention, so it's really not a problem. I swear he finds it more engrossing than CBeebies grin I also have the world's most fabulous double pump which I can run off batteries as well as from mains power, and comes in a bag (mine was an older version in a backpack, rather than the shoulder bag shown here) so I can literally follow DS1 around while I'm pumping. I can hold both breast shields on with one hand while I'm pumping (well-endowed) but if you got one of those bra things that hold the shields on, you could be mobile and hands-free. It cost a bomb but it has been worth every penny.

I really hope it works out for you this time OP smile

Cuppatea14 Wed 26-Nov-14 08:29:34

Thanks all, good to hear some encouraging stories. I'll definitely give it a bash again, but have decided not to put myself under the same level of pressure this time around. As long as this one gets the first couple of weeks of goodness I'll be happy. I'll definitely ask about cup feeds, I agree that the staff at the hospital were very quick to resort to bottles the last time. I just wanted to get out and get home so didn't put up much of a fight.

FuckYouChrisAndThatHorse Wed 26-Nov-14 09:12:51

Sounds like a great plan. I remember all to well how much I blamed myself for dc1 sad I felt utterly useless and was sure it was all my fault. Dc2 just showed me that every baby is different and that it wasn't me at all. And if your dc2 decides not to, then it's not you either!

Make sure you have plenty of lansinoh. Bfing can hurt even when done right in the first few weeks (they need to get used to the use).

I also have a friend who exclusively expressed for her dc2 with a toddler. Baby just preferred a bottle. By the time he was 3 months she expressed twice a day with no problems at all smile

Cannotbelieveit Wed 26-Nov-14 10:44:39

DS1 (now 19 months old) emcs, 16 day SCBU stay due to extremely low blood sugars. Tube fed c&g nutri prem and my expressed milk but would never latch despite so much help in hospital and out!! Kept pumping til he was 4 months (and I was pregnant again). He was mix fed til then. Found out at 6 months he had a severe upper lip tie. sad

DS2 (now nearly 7 months old) ebf til 6 months absolutely no problems. Still bf and blw

Stay positive and get all the help you can grin

ElphabaTheGreen Wed 26-Nov-14 20:59:02

You got pregnant again four months after a CS?! shock I was told to wait at LEAST 12 months after the first and at 18 months after the second to allow time for wound-healing.

Cannotbelieveit Thu 27-Nov-14 00:17:06

Yep had a vbac for DS2 and my consultant never once mentioned the gap between pregnancies

iwasyoungonce Thu 27-Nov-14 00:23:55


My DD was exactly the same as yours - couldn't get her to latch on/ lots of screaming baby/ general misery on my part / gave up after 10 miserable days. Then the guilt. Awful.

I was dreading the same thing again, but my second baby (DS) breast fed wonderfully, until he was 2! He just took to it naturally straight away.

Try not to put pressure on yourself though. Every baby is different. And my DD is none the worse for being formula fed. And she slept so much better than DS.

CustardLover Thu 27-Nov-14 00:26:48

Yes. DS1 was in intensive care in his first week of life for sodium poisoning (he was super little and a bit early and they told me that he couldn't suck, eg weirdly he could latch but hadn't 'developed the sucking reflex' which frankly sounds far-fetched but there you go- he hasn't swallowed anything so was v dehydrated and floppy) and we had to then bottle him just to measure what was going in (tbh after 3 days in intensive I was terrified of bfing, although did express 8 times a day, oh gosh, how I remember that... Anyway, I tigress) and was therefore both nervous and yet keen to try again for DS2 and it was completely different- he was able to do it from the beginning, super easy. So they really are totally different beasts. Hopefully not actually beasts.

hubbahubster Thu 27-Nov-14 20:39:45


DC1 - lost 2lt blood (CS), he latched but wouldn't suck, was told to top up with formula but given no guidance how to. Kept putting him to breast until 7wks when I gave up and accepted he was FF.

DC2 - lost 1lt of blood (CS). Took to boob like a champ, has gained loads of weight, slept beautifully from the start... Still EBF at 27 weeks.

I was sure I wouldn't manage it this time, but I found the midwives in hospital really left me to it second time around and that helped my state of mind no end. The first time, I felt hassled and manhandled.

Cuppatea14 Fri 28-Nov-14 21:39:13

' The first time, I felt hassled and manhandled'

This is exactly how I felt in hospital on Dd1, so much completely conflicting advise and my boobs being pulled and tugged and pummelled every which way, meanwhile my poor little mite bloody starving and screaming, honestly it was nightmarish.

Thanks for all the positive stories folks, it's helped me be a bit less fatalistic about trying again. We'll see how it goes- I'll report back!!

MummyPig24 Sun 30-Nov-14 19:11:40

I didn't even try bf ds1. I was 19 and he was born under shocking circumstances, I didn't even want a baby, let alone want to breastfeed one. I quickly fell in love with him but I don't regret not trying because it was the right decision at the time.

When dd was born a few years later I really wanted to give it a go. But the odds seemed stacked against us. She was very sleepy for the first few days after birth and wouldn't feed, then I discovered she couldn't feed. She had a 90% tongue tie and a lip tie too. By the time this was discovered and sorted out my milk supply had dropped and I was so stressed we switched to formula.

Ds2 is almost 9 months and still breastfeeding. He has had a couple of bottles but there has been no need really. It has been so easy. He latched on straight away and after some initial soreness it has been a very good experience.

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