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Feel like I am ready to give up BF(18 Posts)
My Dd is just over 3 weeks old. I am struggling with the amount of time she is on my Breasts for. It feels like it is constant from 10/11am to sometimes 8/9pm. I know she is comfort feeding/cluster feeding but not sure how to tell when she doesn't need feeding anymore? We give a bottle of formula at around 9pm to hopefully get her to sleep and to give me a break (this was suggested by the MW). Dd also has issues with wind and does not settle down well at all and we cannot put her down during the day. During the night she feeds every 3 hours.
Tbh she breastfeeds very well and have no problems with latching. In the first week she only lost 3% of her weight and by the 2nd week she was back at her birth weight.
I feel it would be such a shame to stop BF as she is doing so well with it. But I just feel like I'm not producing enough for her and just don't know how long I can do this for.
This is my first child and feel I am struggling to read her signs.
Any tips or advice would be much appreciated.
Hello OP, congratulations on your new baby and bf up to now - fantastic achievements!!
Just wondering if you are able to express a little by hand or have you got an electric breast pump? I got the mam one and found it helped enormously (it has a hand pump and an electric one all in the same box). Can help take a bit of the pressure off you if there's someone else can do a feed then you can get a rest.
All totally normal. You and your boobs have kept your baby alive and well for these 3 weeks, and that’s amazing. Sounds completely typical for a breastfed baby and you might find that she’s just a baby who needs physical contact more than others, rather than it being a feeding ‘problem’. Does she like being in a sling? I used to have a break (nap, bath etc) when DH would put her in the sling for a couple of hours while he cooked tea. The feeds do eventually space out a bit, but at 3 weeks they really do just want to be with you.
La Leche League have a free helpline and their advisors are great. Sounds like you’re doing great!
If you can just get through these early weeks it gets so much easier OP - just think, in a few weeks you won’t be getting up in the middle of the night to make a bottle, you won’t have to plan outings with sterilised equipment and ways of heating bottles. And no washing up!
Congrats on your baby! Honestly that does sound normal. 3 weeks is still so early, baby will be feeding lots from you to ensure your supply builds up. Don’t be worried you aren’t making enough for her, so long as she’s having plenty of wet/dirty nappies and isn’t losing weight, then she’ll be getting what she needs!
Well done on making it this far, I’m almost at 9 months now and I promise it gets so much easier and feeds really space out and settle down. Sleeping for 3 hour stretches at night is great too, my DD has regressed sleep-wise so I’d love a few 3 hour stretches!!
It does seem it would be a shame if you’ve both taken to it so well, if you can persevere for the next few weeks you should find the feeds easier.
@turnedabout I haven't got an electric pump yet. I have been looking at them a lot but don't know which one to go for - there are so many different options. I can hand express so could do that instead for now.
@DottyandOtty I also don't have a sling yet and as I can't wear one for another 3 weeks (due to my section). But I think you are right she just wants to be close but find it so difficult.
Thanks for your replies. I really do want to BF but struggling to keep it going. I hope it does get easier soon. Do you think a dummy would help?
Hi OP, congratulations and it sounds like you are doing so well . The early days for me were so, so difficult. Breastfeeding was so hard, and felt relentless, and exhausting, and I was in tears a lot. Thankfully we turned a corner around 6 weeks and it started to get easier.
Now my son is 3 and I am happily still feeding him . If you do wish to keep going, things should start getting better soon. Especially as it sounds like your little one is feeding well. As mentioned above, La Leche League are wonderful, and the Milk Meg on facebook is great also. Wish you all the best
I remember being stuck to the sofa around week 3 and DD was constantly on me. Turns out she was just putting her order in and it calmed down the following week and she was feeding less frequently but for longer. Every once in a while she'd cluster feed for a few days. I think it's like a signal to the boob machine that they need more per feed, not necessarily quantity but more nutrient rich. It all clicked into place for us at around week 8.
It's hard though being the main provider. I felt equally proud and pissed off.
It does get easier honestly!
Is there a special reason you can't wear the sling? I had a c section too but I used it from day 7 I think. One of the stretchy cloth ones.
I know sometimes it feels like you should be doing lots but just enjoy this time that you can sit on sofa and watch loads of movies. Believe it or not I miss those days now my son is 13 months old!
It's so tough through the night so try to get as much help as possible from your partner. Go to bed early, try to get a shift in.. If he can do an expressed/formula feed around 10pm that will give you a bit of unbroken sleep.
I this week your baby is priming the pump. She will be on all the time in order to fuel your boobs to produce enough tissue to give her enough milk at six months. She has to do it now as these are the crucial weeks. Once this is done she will ease off. Promise. It isn’t you don’t have enough, she is training you up! Consider a dummy for a bit as ducking is also a comfort reflex
Hang in there, it gets so much easier!
At the time it feels impossible that your baby can be on your boob as much as they are but it's their way of getting supply up, bonding and being comforted. You do wonder why the hell you weren't properly warned about it.
You just need to ride it out. Concentrate on yourself and the baby. If a load of washing isn't done, or the hoovering or any of the other million jobs you feel needs doing doesn't get done it really doesn't matter.
Once you are past this arduous bit the feeling of sitting down feeding your growing baby is indescribable.
@stormy11 I use the nekan pump bought on amazon. My son is six weeks. I express very first thing in the morning before I feed him and store that for the evening to break up the cluster feeds when I feel a bit ‘dry’ and tired. He sleeps through the Night on his feed!!
Yes! Omg use a dummy! It totally helped me when they were very small.
If she’s gaining weight and has lots of wet nappies that pretty evident she’s getting enough. And she’s feeding easily with no latch issues - that’s awesome!
If she’s wanting to be held a lot during the day giving her bottles instead of breast probably won’t make much difference.
Congrats op. It can be tough and draining. Do you have a local breastfeeding group nearby that you could attend. These provide great peer support. I found that my babes were pretty attached to me for up to the first 9 weeks. I was totally rubbish at expressing, so that wasn't an option. Like you, baby number 1 was a colicky baby and I also used a bottle after 3weeks. The colic usually disappears about 4/5months. Look after yourself. Food, fluids, rest. Good luck, and remember, if you decide a bottle is the way forward for you, just embrace it, don't think of it as a failure. Baby won't care, and anyone who is unkind is not worth your worry.
Hi OP, my breastfeeding support worker told me that if baby was still at nipple after 45 mins then I was being used as a soother. So I break them off and slip a little dummy into the mouth, then snuggle back in for a cuddle. Worked a treat!
Try the Mam range of dummies that glow in the dark, I got them from a big Tesco near me. Tommee tippee weren't a success.
Re: the electric pump- yes I too struggled with which one to choose from! I had been given amazon vouchers at work and think I found the Mam one at x good price about £100 so just went for it - it was good in my opinion and helped hugely! Take a look on gumtree/Facebook in your area as maybe someone selling one at a good price?
I promise I don't work for Mam!
My daughter turns 8 months old on Sunday. I’ve been pumping at work and BF her for her bedtime feed. My supply has been dropping steadily over the past few weeks despite what I can do, and I worry I don’t have much time left. Thank you for acknowledging the complex emotions with this process. I feel excited for the freedom, guilty for feeling that way, and sad for the end of our bedtime BF session that is so special to me, especially after a long day at work. I’m thankful to have given her as much breast milk as I could. It is tough, though, when your breastfeeding journey doesn’t look the way you thought it might when you were pregnant.
Thank you for your post!
Congratulations and well done! Sounds like a dummy could be a great help for you. Mine loved the tommee tippee ones. Good luck!
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