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Should I stop breastfeeding?

(10 Posts)
iwasagirlinavillage Sun 04-Jun-17 21:55:56

DD2 is almost 1 year old? She was born at 33 weeks and we really struggled to get feeding established. She came out of SCBU on bottles of expressed milk and I worked really hard to get her breastfeeding. We have battled through thrush, hospital admissions and multiple cuts. She hasn't taken to solids well and still likes to breastfeed. I am more than happy to continue BUT my husband and I separated in February and he has been having the DCs overnight for 2 nights every 2 weeks. He has them now and I'm struggling to express milk. I'm expressing for the third time today and I've expressed 4oz total. I don't want to stop breastfeeding but I just don't seem to have enough milk now. I've been feeling as though I've not had enough milk for DD2 recently and the pump has just confirmed it. What can I do? Is my only option to give up? I'm already taking fenugreek.

BoraThirch Sun 04-Jun-17 21:58:32

I was never able to express anything. Is she just bottle feeding or does she feed from the breast too?

bf1000 Sun 04-Jun-17 22:03:48

I would continue nursing when she is with you. She will get milk better than a pump and also it's great for reconnecting after time apart and comforting for her.
Pumping gets harder after time. With my first I could pomp loads in first yr but after that Pumping became very hard but I'm still nursing at 4yrs so I know she continued to get milk.

You could try lactation cookies, oats etc t9 boost supply. She could have cow's milk while with her dad if you can't pump enough to send x

pileoflaundry Sun 04-Jun-17 22:18:10

Well done for bf-ing in such hard circumstances. You have done really well, regardless of whether you stop now or not.

How much you can express isn't equal to how much milk there is. Babies and toddlers are much more adept at getting the milk out than even the best hospital pumps. I was never good at expressing, but DC happily bf'ed.

You say that your DD enjoys bf, and you don't want to stop. Those are the two main things! Keep putting DD to the breast. The more often she feeds, the more milk you will make. I would still try pumping on the nights when DD was away, to relieve the breasts and to remind them to make milk, but I would't worry if only a little came out.

TynesideBlonde Sun 04-Jun-17 22:18:58

You could express for relief when DCs are with ExDH and feed as normal when she's with you. Similar to friends I know who work night / day shifts she will adapt.
I could only ever get a decent amount from the pump if I broke the seal with a finger every few pumps. Only give up if you want to.

iwasagirlinavillage Sun 04-Jun-17 22:22:53

She is only breastfed, she doesn't have any bottles with me. To complicate matters further we believe she might have CMPA so she has to have Soy formula but she takes that fine. That's what she has when she's with her Dad. Although there's plenty of expressed milk available he apparently finds it easier to give formula - it's a battle I've given up with.

It's interesting that expressing can change over time. One breast has almost completely given up producing milk. While it's annoying it's understandable as I previously had a lump removed close to the nipple so I assume milk ducts were affected. However the other breast produced 250ml in one go a couple of months ago. Granted, that was in the morning after not expressing during the night but I'm not used to not being able to express as much. Do you really think it's possible that there's enough milk for her when she feeds directly and I'm suddenly unable to express as much? My nipple is sore when I express as well yet I've never had a problem before.

FusionChefGeoff Sun 04-Jun-17 22:30:37

When DS was about 8 months old, me and DH had a weekend away without him. I had always planned to stop BF then, didn't pump etc but when we got home, he was very under the weather so I felt like it was worth trying a feed and we successfully fed for another 6 ish weeks after that.

So in my case, my supply was very well established and didn't suffer after 2 nights away.

So don't give up if you don't want to!

BoraThirch Sun 04-Jun-17 22:30:57

I would just keep feeding for as long as you and she both want to and not worry about how much you can express.

iwasagirlinavillage Mon 05-Jun-17 10:48:20

I'm starting to hate expressing as I'm not getting as much milk and it's also making my nipple very sore. What do you think would happen if I only expressed when very full? Would my supply drop? Or do you think it would return to normal when I'm back with DD2 and she is able to feed as normal?

Agoddessonamountaintop Mon 05-Jun-17 13:41:03

I came on to agree with what pileoflaundry said, but you've asked more specific questions which I don't know tha answer to (if there even is definitive one).
I fed my three for a total of over five years, and never managed to express - but they were never separatw from me overnight as your D is. I'd say, maybe try expressing just for a short time, to stimulate supply rather than try to get a volume of milk, but it may be that your DD's feeding normally when she's with you is enough to keep the supply up. Could you try ringing a breastfeeding counsellor, or La Lêche League?

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