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Failed breastfeeding first time, might I be able to with second baby?

(39 Posts)
DungunGirl Thu 20-Nov-08 13:59:47

Hi ladies

Any experience out there?

I didn't produce anywhere near enough milk with DS, he got jaundice and was admitted to hospital.

He never latched on properly either even with all the midwives and proffessionals in the hospital pulling at my boobs!

Has anyone gone on to produce and succesfully breastfeed second time round? Or am I kidding myself...

OP’s posts: |
jabberwocky Thu 20-Nov-08 14:15:16

Absolutely!! Ds1 had nipple confusion and I wound up expressing for a year so I was very keen to get it going for ds2. It took a bit of perseverence. He didn't care for one side (slightly flat nipple) so I had to use a nipple shield to get him to take it. I just weaned him last week - he'll be two on Saturday

Piccalilli2 Thu 20-Nov-08 16:10:55

I was unable to breastfeed dd1 but am still breastfeeding dd2 at 7 months, although the first 6 weeks were hell. It is definitely possible. A lot depends on the support you get in the early days.

drivinmecrazy Thu 20-Nov-08 16:24:28

Definately. DD1 was nightmare to feed, could never latch on properly and if she did I would have to sit in whatever position she latched onto because if I moved in the slightest she would come off and not get back on again. I managed 7 weeks of mixing expressing and feeding and it was exhausting resulting in PND. DD2 I expected to bottle feed so was prepared with all the stuff, but to my amazement she latched on herself straight after birth. only problem was she wouldn't ever take a bottle and for some reason I was never able to express with her so fed until she was 10 months and she went straight onto a beaker. having said that, i really didn't mind and absolutely loved feeding her, although made me very guilty for DD1. I just think, for whatever reason, some babies are better at it than others.
Good luck, and just don't rule anything in or out. Hopefully you will get a really lovel suprise with baby #2

elkiedee Thu 20-Nov-08 16:28:47

I'm also really hoping I can do it second time round.

Was it your supply that was the issue? With me it was latching on/knowing what was going on, there was a point at which supply was assumed to be a problem but the evidence says to me that wasn't the case.

And for latching on I thought being pulled at was unhelpful as it didn't show me how to do it myself which obviously I needed to/

weeonion Thu 20-Nov-08 16:39:29

dungungirl - i have a spare copy of a new breastfeeding dvd just out in which 2nd time mums talk about similar expereinces to yourself. email me and i will send you it if you want

l dot thompson773 at ntlworld dot com

sandk Thu 20-Nov-08 16:49:07

Yes. I fed DD (my second) for over 7 months, stopping by choice when I returned to work.

Some of the things that made a difference:

(1) Read a lot of the breast-feeding boards on here, so had a lot more knowledge.

(2) Contacted a (private) breast-feeding counsellor before the birth. She came to my house, showed me a video of a baby latching itself in the bath, gave me various written information, listened sympathetically to me spouting about my horrible experiences with DS, promised to come around when DD was born if I'd like her to.

(3) Watched a DVD - mine was Clare Byam-Cook's Breastfeeding without Tears. Has a section of her taking about 10 minutes stuggling to latch on a baby, but getting there in the end. Personally I found that an eye-opener, and actually quite supportive.

(4) I didn't expect it to work second time, whereas first time I'd been "very determined" that it would. Thus I was a hell of a lot less anxious.

(5) DH supported me for the first few days / nights. Helped me to latch her on, looked at the latch etc. (Instead of turning away and sighing loudly because of all this nonsense that was disturbing his beauty sleep.)

(6) I had some confidence in myself. So when became very sleepy on day 2 (more than 12 hours), I expressed colostrum and gave it her in a syringe. And ignored the midwife who was asking about the amount DD had had: "You said 15mls? 1.5 mls? I'm sorry, you mean ONLY 0.15ml???!" (Shut up woman, I worked hard to get out those 20 drops..)

(7) DD was an easier baby generally.

For the record, I can think of 3 other friends who didn't succeed b/f their first but tried with their second. Two of them succeeded in feeding their second for as long as they chose. The other gave up after 2 weeks, due to mastisis (which she had repeatedly 1st time around).

If you decide to go for it second time - good luck.

meglet Thu 20-Nov-08 20:11:29

My DS never wanted to latch on and bf was a disaster.

DD latched on straight away and has gained weight.

2 different children. 2 totally different experiences. Even the tough time you had with your DS will give you a bit of knowledge and give you a head start with your next baby.

MissusH Thu 20-Nov-08 20:28:14


had problems with dd1 (latch problems, my own inexperience & crap support from mws & hvs) so resorted to formula. was unaware of the support available and felt a total failure sad

dd2 is now 7wks and breastfeeding fine. it was difficult at first and i was still convinced that i wasn't doing it right.

However dd is 2lbs heavier than her birth weight so i must be doing okay!!

this time i expected the worse case scenarios so if they didn't happen then bonus! i also refused to leave the hospital until i was confident of the latch, read the feeding boards on mn and trawled the internet for all the info i could find...

good luck!

Buckets Thu 20-Nov-08 21:07:11

Dungungirl, were they actual breastfeeding counsellors that helped you? The difference is a degree-level course specifically in BF.
The not-producing-enough will have been to do with him not latching properly - the more they drink the more you make.
I'm BFing my 3rd after disastrous attempt (didn't ask for help) with first and not trying at all with 3rd. The first 3wks were hell but was amazed to find that mythical 6wk turning point really existssmile. You need to see a BF counsellor in the first few days as the damage done with poor latching/positioning will take a while to heal even once you've got it right.

DungunGirl Fri 21-Nov-08 13:30:20

THanks for all the experiences and advice ladies.

The hospital seemed to think with DS it was a combo of not producing enough milk and also not getting the stimulation from baby.

They put me on the huge electric hospital breast pumps 3 times a day for 3 days while DS was in hospital for the jaundice ( I stayed in hospital too) and they were surprised that even with the expressing that my milk just was not really coming through. I was producing a mere 5ml a time.

I didn't get that 'let down' women talk about...I didn't feel like my breasts were particularly heavy at any point after the birth.

But I have never been offered a possible reason or way to do better 2nd time round!

I really do want to try again...however I am worried that if the problem lies with me, then I will starving my baby AGAIN! Poor DS already got starved the first 5 days of his life. sad


That would be great. THanks!! I'll email you.

OP’s posts: |
Lio Fri 21-Nov-08 13:32:51

IT IS POSSIBLE! I was terrified about b/f going badly again, and it just didn't happen that way second time around. You know who to go to for help, you will address this right from the word go if you need to, and this is a different baby and your body might behave completely differently too. Good luck.

jamescagney Fri 21-Nov-08 13:34:35

I have exactly the same situation as you DungunGirl, my lo wouldn't feed, she had physiological jaunice, wasn't interested in the breast only sleeping. I wasn't producing milk... tears all round. I think I read something which said that it was one of the few times that bfing wasn't recommended. However, I am all gung ho to try again with baby No 2. Good luck!

Divvy Fri 21-Nov-08 13:36:10

Yes! Took me till my 5th child to get the hang of breastfeeding!

FruitynNutty Fri 21-Nov-08 13:41:13

Dungun!!!!! Me too sad

I've heard PCOS can cause reduced milk flow. I am worried about it this time around too.
I mentioned it to my consultant who brushed it off saying it's a old wife's tale! shock
Also, being on thyroxine can reduce supply so I have a double wammy sad

I would speak to a BF councillor who has experience with mothers with little or no supply. That's what I'm going to do.
You should have one at your hospital.

I hate it when you hear people complaining about their heavy leaking boobs. I WANT THAT!!!! envyenvy

Buckets Fri 21-Nov-08 13:42:27

It must be very difficult to let down when you're in a situation like that. It's occitocin that stimulates labour contractions and then let down - stress & panic will inhibit occitocin (eg when ladies go to hosp and contractions stop.)

Are you in the NCT? I really recommend their classes to get your head around the science behind BF.
Have a look on Ebay for hypnosis relaxation CDs and try to learn some methods to handle stress and panic. When I'm expressing I only get let down after I've had a nice hot bath. There's also herbs you can take, check out for more science.

popsycal Fri 21-Nov-08 13:44:27

extremely similar here!!
ds1 was in hopsital with jaundice for 3 weeks - realy poorly - mixed fed from day three.

By 10 weeks, he was formula fed and I gave up breastfeeding much erlier than I had wanted to.

second time....
breastfed ds2 for 2 weeks short of his 3rd birthday!!!1

that successful enough ???

ds3 is 10 weeks and fully breast fed

good luck - you need a dash of stubbornness

popsycal Fri 21-Nov-08 13:44:51

oh yes - and ring the helplines if you need to with any conerns whatsoever!

ohIdoliketobebesidethe Fri 21-Nov-08 13:46:05

My aunt couldn't feed her first and then breast fed twins.

DungunGirl Fri 21-Nov-08 13:58:17

All very inspiring stories....getting a little excited!

HELLO! smile
Yeah...that sounds like a good idea. How do you go about getting to see these breastfeeding consultants?

Would they only see you once baby is born?

OP’s posts: |
DungunGirl Fri 21-Nov-08 14:01:14

OOHHH just to add....

many ladies have referred to being stubborn about breastfeeding.

I didn't mention that with DS, I still MADE him try to breastfeed up until 2 months old. I was mix-feeding. However, I reckon he was getting nothing much from me and most of it was the bottle!

By the time he was 2 months old he was turning away from the nipple, pushing it away!!! He just didn't want to know!

So I stayed stubborn with it, but had to admit defeat in the end as baby was making it pretty clear that it was not wanting it...sad

OP’s posts: |
midnightexpress Fri 21-Nov-08 14:04:47

Absolutely yes yes yes.

Complete disaster with ds1 - tried for weeks and he just wasn't getting it, me getting more and more stressed, ended up mixed feeding from 5 weeks as he wasn't gaining weight and ff completely from about 10 weeks. He was a changed child as soon as we started ff, started gaining weight, much happier, so when ds2 came along I decided to try again but not beat myself up so much if it didn't work out.

Out he came, latched on and I immediately realised that this is how it's supposed to feel. He's just self-weaned at 22 months.

Try to approach it in a relaxed way - I think that, and your child's personality, are the keys. You already have one happy (I hope smile) ff DS, so you know that it's not the be-all and end-all if it doesn't work out next time.

loler Sat 22-Nov-08 09:21:50

Don't just assume that it will be easier the 2nd time (I think I did but not sure why!) - I found it even worse 2nd time. Had lots advise from lots of different people (MW & HV) just didn't work!

With no.3 went to a NCT breastfeeding drop in centre and had one to one talk with a breastfeeding counsellor. Talked through what happened the previous times and how I could put it right. I did this when about 8mnths pg. Read lots of books and was alot more prepared. Felt I could ring the counsellor if I had a problem as I knew her.

As it happened didn't have any problem at all and it felt good/not painful right from the start. The best tip I had was when the baby latches on count to 10, if it still hurts take the baby off and start again.

Ds2 just self weaned at 14mnths.

Found out about the closest nct drop-in here.

Good luck!

dannyb Sat 22-Nov-08 09:49:38

DC1 was a disaster to BF, took 10 minutes to latch on at a time, bleeding nipples, me in tears the whole time, no milk for a week and then I gave up at 8 days because the whole experience was too traumatic for both of us.

DC2 latched on soon after birth, fed constantly, milk started coming in within 48 hours and we were feeding in starbucks within 4 days.

I Only fed DC2 for 3 months as I realised that I am not a careeer BF'er which is interesting as I really thought I would be but even so the experience was overwhelmingly positive and I felt in control of the feeding rather than it controlling me IYKWIM.

I had a traumatic ventouse delivery with DC1 and a easy short completely natural labour, no pain relief, with DC2 and I do wonder if that helped the feeding.

Just about to TTC #3 and the plan this time is to try get my head round frequent feeding and accepting that I don't know that they are taking! 6 months is my target this time

SpookyMadMummy Sat 22-Nov-08 10:06:10

I could have written your OP myself.
Dd1 was badly jaundiced just after birth and had a very poor suck. I had midwives shoving my boobs at her and it did not work. I ended up expressing and feeding that way for 6 months.
Dd2 OTOH was a dream.
Within a couple of minutes of her birth she was happily breastfeeding which we did for 4 months.

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