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If you BF'd a first child but not subsequent ones...

(7 Posts)
Highlove Wed 31-Aug-16 11:23:59

I just wondered why/how you ended up not BFing second or subsequent children, how you felt about it and so on.

I have a two year old who was BF'd till 12 months. The first couple of months were hell - undiagnosed tongue tie meant sporadic weight gain, almost constant feeding, no sleep and terrible pain for me. But we got there and at about four/five months it became easy and later a pleasure.

DC2 is three weeks. Tongue tie picked up sooner and has been snipped but I'm still in pain. (See my other thread on that!) We're obviously right in the middle of cluster feeding which I know is normal if bloody hard. We've also had a few other issues so repeated trips back to labour ward for various things, after a week-long initial hospital stay because the birth wasn't straightforward.

My amazing DC1 is struggling with it - the usual new sibling stuff, me having been in hospital so long then readmitted, lots if follow-up trips, etc. she keeps asking if I'm going back to hospital. And when I am here I've got DC2 permanently attached to me. I am also really missing her - I'm trying to make a bit of time each day for just her (as well as including her in baby stuff) but it's not easy or always doable. I'm worried our fantastic bond will be damaged. I'm finding myself missing the days when it was just us, though DC2 is amazing.

So that's all a long-winded way of me saying I'm right on the verge of packing it in and moving onto FF. I don't want to because I know it gets easier. And I feel guilty about DC2 not getting the same start as DC1. But at the same time, it feels like life would immediately get easier - DC1 could get a bit of mummy time, I could share the load with DH more, etc.

I'm really struggling with what to do. DH will support whatever I choose but I know he instinctively feels the same as I do about giving them both the same start. My incredibly pro-BF and ever so slightly formula-judging (but otherwise lovely!) mum has just suggested I think about FF.

Argh. Anyone got any experience with this? What did you do/how did you feel? Thanks.

Haudyerwheesht Wed 31-Aug-16 11:33:12

I breastfed dc1 until he was almost a year. It was hellish at times tbh.

Dc2 had a severe tongue tie, I had a PPH and she had early onset jaundice so we had to mix feed from the start. Tried using little cup things rather than bottles but it just wasn't working and she had severe reflux which meant she was vomiting copiously all the time and I just had no time left for ds. I fed her until she was 3 months and then she stopped latching on.

Being honest, I was absolutely heartbroken and hated myself for 'failing' her.

She's 5 now and I realise that was my hormones talking. She was and is fine and is actually probably the more robust of my kids. We have an amazing bond so it hasn't effected that.

My advice would be do what you need to do, do NOT beat yourself up. Breastfeeding isn't always best if it means you're exhausted and dc1 is being left to their own devices. I truly believe that.

Highlove Wed 31-Aug-16 19:36:02

Thank you - that's really helpful. We've actually not had a bad day (after a hideous night) and I drafted in my mum to look after her while I did bath and bed with DC1 - she whinged a bit but has survived.

I'm still not sure what to do longer-term. DH thinks we should try to give it another week or two to give the TT snip a chance to make things easier and in theory i agree...but we'll see. I guess by then we'll be approaching six weeks when I understand it's easier to mix feed, so that might be a compromise. But I don't know...I nearly bought some formula today but in the end didn't...so it won't be happening tonight.

Fluffsnuts Thu 01-Sep-16 19:29:00

Currently breastfeeding my first. 8months in. It's been physically easy but mental torture. If he'd take a bottle I'd have switched ages ago. Baby 2 will get colostrum and nothing more. I am not doing this again, it has totally broken me!

Nottalotta Fri 02-Sep-16 19:04:18

Have you thought about introducing a bottle at bedtime? And maybe another during the day? I ebf ds and am still feeding at night at 13 months. But am pregnant again. I remember saying in the early days of feeding ds, that I didn't know how anyone managed it with a toddler as I was permanently attached to glhim for about 12 weeks. And that was with no real problems.

So I am already considering a bedtime bottle of formula for number two. And already feeling guilty for thinking about it!

I tried to express for ds so he could have a bottle from someone else but I w as crap at expressing and he wouldn't take a bottle. I think I started too late and tbh after the faff of expressing it was just easier to feed him myself.

If number 2 feeds as well as ds does, I will introduce a bottle almost straight away.

mrsmugoo Sat 03-Sep-16 12:56:04

Hi highlove

DD is 14 weeks now and BF her was very painful at the start and time consuming as she cluster fed day and night. 2.5 year old DS did struggle with it but I pushed through and really tried to include him as much as I could (special cuddles and stories when feeding for example).

Things are so much easier now. The feeding has eased up to every 2-3 hours and only takes 10 minutes and I'm really glad I got through the hard first month or so.

Highlove Sat 03-Sep-16 19:58:42

Thank you all.

Pain has spread to my other boob now - argh - and I've noticed the nipples are blanching after a feed. Kellymom suggests vasospasm which fits with what I'm experiencing, including pain deep in the boob after a feed. I'm sure it's latch related so am feeling a bit disheartened that over a week after the TT snip and latch is still so shallow.

Current plan is to really try and stick with this till she's next weighed in ten days or so. If her gain is still a bit slow then we're going to mix feed. If she's gsining better then I don't know - will depend on the pain!

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