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ebf...when to admit defeat and give up?

(7 Posts)
jellybelly8 Tue 23-Feb-16 15:52:52


My DD is 3 months and we have breast fed all this time (she will not take a bottle) however we have had our fair share of problems. TT resolved at 7 weeks.

She continues to feed around 20 times a day for very short lengths of time, I just cannot get her to prolong the feed. I don't feel that we have established feeding at all nor do we have a very deep latch.

DD still seems a very unhappy and uptight baby and has not gained weight for 3weeks. We've seen a paediatrician who didn't give us many suggestions other than to return to GP when she has actually lost weight. It was also suggested that we could treat for reflux although she stated that she did not believe it was reflux (lost even more faith with her contradiction)!

I've tried breast compression, offering both boobs, seen lactation consultants but ultimately I don't want to carry on if it is not helping the situation. 4 weeks ago I would have been distraught by the suggestion of giving up but without DD gaining weight I no longer feel that I am helping her by persevering. Obviously even shopping BFing will be a challenge as she doesn't take bottle/cup/syringe but I so want a happy baby and to start enjoying motherhood.

So, when is it the right time to say enough is enough? How did others feel when they switched? Would be grateful for other peoples experiences.


cookiefiend Tue 23-Feb-16 16:04:58

Goodness me DD2 is 13 weeks and I feel like I could have written much of your post. I realised (having struggled with DD1 too) that I would previously have suggested using Google as a great source of videos about deepening your latch (videos on the flipple) I shall take my own advice and head over there now.

However that doesn't answer your question. Last time I had to mix feed DD1 from day 4 until almost 6 months. I was very upset at the time and felt like such a failure, but in hindsight I tried my absolute hardest- there was nothing I didn't try and eventually did get down to ebf her (just before she started solids- doh!). She had the benefit of bf and so now has your DC. I think it is a personal question- there is no right or wrong answer. Formula is not poison. So do whatever you feel is right for you and your child- whether that is now moving totally to formula or mix feeding. I found with dd1 I gave formula for daytime feeds as it gave me more freedom during the day to go out (not bf every twelve seconds) and it meant I didn't have to get up to find a bottle at night. A top up or two a day may be enough to get weight gain.

Good luck- DD2 is slowly failing off the growth chart and it is so frustrating as I feel she is otherwise fine. If it weren't for that I would have felt feeding was going just fine I think. It is so stressful. I hope you get it all sorted.

mrswishywashy Tue 23-Feb-16 20:43:01

I've got a slow grower too, she's four months and due for a weigh in on Friday, she's on the 0.4th percentile so can easily slip of the chart although she is otherwise healthy. We had tt snipped at seven weeks as well, really wanted to do cranio osteopath but couldn't afford it so I baby wear and do massage with her.

I dropped dairy and soya and have noticed a huge improvement in her. Between when her tt was done and 12 weeks she was crying and stiff so much of the time but it's really diminished now. We were away last week and I had a few slip ups with dairy and all her symptoms came back, back to no dairy and she's improving again. Might be worth trying in the mean time.

What are the professionals saying regarding weight gain? Could you express and try the milk in an open cup?

jellybelly8 Tue 23-Feb-16 21:30:23

Thanks for the replies.
Cookiefiend- it is stressful! It feels very black and white for me, I either breastfeed or ff. Maybe I need to come up with a meet in the middle solution like you describe and I like the idea of not faffing with bottles in the night.

MrsWW- Dd also seems to be crying and stiff/tense often. My motto has always been 'if in doubt get my boobs out' I mean breastfeeding motto, not just life in general, although... but sometimes she is too stressed out to eat. I've been offering less now anyway in the hope that she would then feed longer. We were lucky enough to try cranial osteopathy although was still a stretch financially but after three treatment I was advised to ' start exploring other reasons why my Dd was always so cross'. I'm sure massage and wearing are wonderful for baby too. I've cut out dairy for nearly two weeks, wonder if I.should also try soya. I have read that they tend to go hand in hand. Think Dd is slightly improved but not sure if that's because of no dairy or getting older or if I am going slightly nuts and imagining it.

I've never had any luck with a little feeding cup, she either get mega peed off or coughs on it, none of this lapping that I was promised! Professionals seem to be watching and waiting but I just want her to be happy and well fed, it's exhausting! Even getting her onto formula will be another battle! May just leave her and Dh to it for an afternoon, she would surely take something if she was hungry enough!

Sorry to waffle again, nice to know I am not alone.

Elledouble Tue 23-Feb-16 21:39:19

My son started falling down the graph at about 10 weeks. He was exclusively breastfed til then, and eventually we were advised to start formula top ups. It is fine to mix feed! I was so upset about it at first and eventually he started properly packing the weight on once he started weaning (at 5 months, on the advice of a paediatrician).

As it happens, we're still breastfeeding at nearly 10 months and he only occasionally has formula. He had a pretty shallow latch at first but that's improved a lot too - agree with checking out the nipple flip technique, I did that for ages.

Nectarines2016 Wed 24-Feb-16 09:05:00

I feel your pain! My 7 week old was readmitted to hospital on day 3 with excessive weight loss, and we ended up on this horrendous 3 hourly feed - express - to up regime. It worked (gained 95 g in one day! ) but left no time for sleep so my milk supply collapsed. Eventually we got back to ebf, but weight gain was slow and baby had TT (which got fixed) then big problems with gas and reflux so she only snacks (all the time) and often cries whilst feeding (especially on the left side). It's really harrowing. On days when she cries all day I feel like I have pnd, but then her weight eventually stabilised and it was such a relief. I don't think there's any easy answers, but just wanted to say that it is very stressful - it puts a lot of pressure on you and GP can be so unhelpful. I found a great breastfeeding support group really helped me emotionally. Going to see a lactation consultant today about the wind/reflux/crying. Sometimes feels like there's way too much contradictory advice out there, and you're all alone in bearing the responsibility of picking your way through it.

Fugghetaboutit Wed 24-Feb-16 09:09:42

I would start topping her up with formula so she starts gaining weight. Maybe a bottle in the evening before bed.

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