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Breastfeeding - when did it get easier for you?

(27 Posts)
Whatsername17 Wed 22-Feb-17 22:09:41

My dd is almost 5 weeks old. This week has been really tough with feeding. She's wanted to feed a lot and become very frustrated when the flow slows down. At times today she has been sacking her finger and crying with hunger but refusing to latch and just screaming at my boobs. I'm posting this hoping for some positive 'light at the end of the tunnel' stories to help me get through the tough bit. When did it get easier for you?

mainlywingingit Wed 22-Feb-17 22:11:40

6-8 weeks - nearly there!!! Keep it up well done. Unless it's tongue tie??

Eclecticmama Wed 22-Feb-17 22:15:20

It got easier for me at 7 weeks when I could stop wearing the shield, and continued to get better until the 3-4th month but I think mine was a more problematic breast feeding journey than most.

You're doing great OP, keep going. When feedings get worse I find that it's either growth spurt, teething, cold or other viral illness etc and things get back on track soon enough.

Whatsername17 Wed 22-Feb-17 22:15:32

No tongue tie. She's been fine up until now and his gaining weight really well. I don't have a very fast let down and I think she gets frustrated. It's only really been this week that she's been difficult in the day. Previously we've had a few fractous evenings but this week has been tough. She will only nap on me and even putting her down so I can pee has been a challenge!

Tumtitum Wed 22-Feb-17 22:15:53

Definitely around 8 weeks. We have a tongue tie which was snipped very early. Still feeding now a year on! Just take one day at a time smile

AprilShowers16 Wed 22-Feb-17 22:17:59

I struggled and it only really finally got better at around 12 weeks, but think that's quite uncommon though. That said I was convinced it would never be ok and here we are at 7 months still feeding and it's fine

mainlywingingit Wed 22-Feb-17 22:42:54

Yes the darkness gets better 6-8 weeks and then there is another good turn 12-14 weeks where it's loads easier. Just in time for summer!

IrregularCommentary Wed 22-Feb-17 22:49:34

6-8 weeks here too. Bloody hard work before it got easy though. I spent many an hour staring alternately between dd and my boobs, sobbing. Absolutely soul destroying at times.

She's now 5.5 months and it's a doddle and I love it. No intention of giving up any time soon.

Stick with it, you will get there.

teaandbiscuitsforme Thu 23-Feb-17 08:38:40

DS is 6 weeks and it's relentless during the day, not so bad overnight though so I can't complain. But I know from DD how easy breastfeeding is once you get through the first 2-3 months. Keep going, you're doing a great job and it's so worth it once they're out of this phase!

TheDowagerCuntess Thu 23-Feb-17 08:42:03

Around the 6-8 week mark for me, too. That was also when the twilight hours endless crying kicked in, and I was at the end of my rope!

It is hard around this time - very hard. But it does not last! It does get a lot easier - at least on the feeding front!

Whatsername17 Thu 23-Feb-17 09:16:39

Thanks all. My mum and mil keep going on about her 'needing to be topped up' and in my weaker moments I find myself wondering if they are right. I haven't given in though and this helps me to stay strong. With my oldest daughter I had lactation failure after a difficult birth and lack of support with bf after. Formula was a nightmare because dd was lactose sensitive and she developed colic. It was awful. I don't want to go through that again so I'm really reluctant to introduce formula but it's hard when there is so much maternal pressure to do what they were taught to do in the 80s. Plus I've done almost 5 weeks and it's been tough. I don't want to throw all that away. I'm not against formula at all but it really didn't work for me last time so I need to persevere. Thanks again. flowers

TheDowagerCuntess Thu 23-Feb-17 09:27:14

Sorry, you just do not need to top up.

I'm a firm believer in feeding whichever way works for you - but this idea that babies need to be 'topped up' with formula is crazy.

Fine, if you want to, to spilt the feeding duties or whatever.

But if you're got to this point - continuing to breastfeed your baby will increase your supply, and you can simply 'top up' with breastmilk.

I mean, if your milk's come in, then it's come in. Breastfeeding is working for you. Which means your supply WILL catch up with demand. It just will!

TheDowagerCuntess Thu 23-Feb-17 09:31:23

For the record, I EBFd a very hungry 98th centile baby for 7 months, and not once did I need to 'top up' confused with formula.

Again, if you want to for your own reasons, fine.

But don't do it because you're being made to believe your breastmilk is not enough.

teaandbiscuitsforme Thu 23-Feb-17 10:04:26

I agree. From your post, there's no reason why you'd need to top up. Unfortunately people haven't been properly educated on breastfeeding. If you don't want to top up, there's lots of information out there about what to do if topping up has been suggested (e.g. Kellymom, the Milk Meg) before you go down the formula route.

If you formula feed, your baby won't be breastfeeding. Therefore, your body won't know that he's taking milk from another source. Therefore your body won't make the milk your baby is asking for; it will make milk for the amount of milk your baby is taking from the breast - i.e. Not enough for her demand. You need to just allow access to feed on demand and so long as there are no medical issues, you will produce the amount of milk your baby needs.

My DD was 91st centile, DS is even bigger. We've never needed to top up. You also won't need to introduce solids early when that suggestion comes up! It's no surprise that my mother's generation were told to only feed every 3-4 hours and then most women didn't make enough milk and had to top up. Babies should be feeding constantly regularly, that's how they regulate your supply.

You're doing the right thing for your baby, don't worry!

QuinnPerkins Thu 23-Feb-17 10:17:38

As someone who had to 'top up' (one small bottle a day) with formula because my body was a wreck after a bad birth, I don't see anything in your posts that suggests you would need to do it! Your DC is putting on weight (mine wasn't), your milk has obviously come in and is good. Honestly, adding formula at this stage sounds totally pointless and from your experience with your first DD sounds like it would just give you added stress.

It got easier at about 6-8 weeks. There are still occasionally 'fussy' periods of a few days where he just doesn't seem to be happy feeding-unlatching and crying etc, but this usually passes and I think it's just a growth spurt or feeling a bit under the weather.

Whatsername17 Thu 23-Feb-17 12:27:10

Thanks all. I don't want to to give her formula. This is hard but bottle feeding dd1 was just as difficult and it lasted until she was about 7 months. In just going to keep going.

FourToTheFloor Thu 23-Feb-17 12:32:35

12 weeks for me. Because I think dd1 had tt (never confirmed but dd2 had it and it was very similar). I was so close to giving up as she fed twice during the night for 1.5 hours each.

Then it literally changed over night and feeds went to less than 30 mins from wake to sleep again. And bf then felt like a good choice for night feeds!

RiseYeSunkenShips Thu 23-Feb-17 13:14:36

Hi, I can't comment as to whether it will get easier as i'm in a similar situation so can relate. I'm currently trying to eliminate formula top ups after going on them due to baby weight loss, dehydraton and jaundice, due delayed milk coming in and low supply after a traumatic birth. If your little one is gaining weight well, healthy and has plenty of wet/dirty nappies you do not need the top ups! I wish I'd known as much as I do now when we were readmitted as I'd have been able to challenge the advice given by all the HCPs!

my little one is 5 weeks old too having similar behaviors crying and sticking hands in mouth. At the moment I'm removing day time top ups but keeping 2-3 over night so I am able to get some sleep and recharge. Towards the end of the evening the tantrums start and she refuses to latch on etc, I keep trying for an hour or so before giving her the top up, which does calm her down massively and then she does latch back on after.

Are you able to express any milk at all and give this as a small top up to calm her down so that she latches back on? I know how hard it is tho, the past few days my daughter has pretty much been feeding constantly throughout the day so I haven't had the time/anything left to express!

Another thing that sometimes helps me is for someone else to take my daughter for 10-15 mins to sooth her and calm her down, I think part of the frustration is when they can smell the milk but cant get it as quick as they'd like it, it can add to the frustration and make things worse!

I know how difficult it is and you're doing an amazing job persevering.

Good luck, i'm sure you'll get there! flowers

MamaHanji Thu 23-Feb-17 13:24:13

Up until about week 3 it was cry in pain every feed. Then it was just painful. By week 6 it was pain free but omg no joke, from 7am when I got out of bed, she would feed for an hour then have an hour break. Then another feed for a couple of Hours then another hours break. Then she would virtually feed from midday till 10/11pm with a few 10/15 minute breaks of being asleep in my arms in feeding position. That was so so hard when there used to be 6/7 hour feeding sessions but she would cry and scream because I was virtually empty and she would have to work hard for the hind milk. That's stopped now! She's 12 weeks and the last 2 weeks have been so so much better! But after speaking to a lot of other mums, my breast feeding journey has been pretty smooth compared to lots of others. As long as she is gaining weight well and is having enough wet and dirty nappies. She's probably doing it for comfort. That's where dummies come in handy!

FourToTheFloor Thu 23-Feb-17 23:12:53

Rise dd1 was born 6 years ago and fell off the charts. Born on the 50th centile, her lowest was 0.02 and still the MW and HCP kept saying breastfeed, she's fine confused. I added one formula bottle as the MIL convinced me and it was nice getting a break in the evening.

Dd2 fell slightly due to tt and we were told to go to A&E. The tt on Dd2 was snipped and she just couldn't bf after that consistently so I expressed for 3 months.

But dd2 slept through from 6 weeks so only waking twice to express was actually OK.

FV45 Thu 23-Feb-17 23:31:20

Tell your well meaning family that you are determined to continue and you'd appreciate their support (in the form of cups of tea, meals and help around the house) rather than them undermining your confidence.

You're doing great. You grew a baby, it's rare for your body now not be able to feed it.

kittytom Thu 23-Feb-17 23:44:27

Hang in there OP. Your baby is gaining weight - that is your doing! It got easier for me at 6 weeks and easier again at 8 then became the easiest thing in the world at 12.

FrameyMcFrame Fri 24-Feb-17 07:04:36

6 weeks.

Sounds like a growth spurt.

Google cluster feeding, it's totally normal and is just building your supply. The fussiness and crying are also normal. It will pass.

TheaSaxby Wed 01-Mar-17 23:15:44

12 weeks for me. I set a goal to breastfeed until then and then maybe call it a day cos I was in pain with feeds and it was relentless at times. I used shields when it was especially bad. But by week 12 it was absolutely fine! I'm still feeding at 29 months! The old me would never have believed it.

TheDowagerCuntess Wed 01-Mar-17 23:30:20

How are you doing, OP?

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