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OK, I've worked out the problem, and NOW I have a problem.... "run out of milk".

(38 Posts)
Jackaroo Thu 06-Aug-09 11:09:23

So I decided to try feeding DS2 til he bursts and he's lapped it all up today. Even stopped sicking up so much etc etc.. so no idea what was happening, but think it's a growth spurt and/or my milk is diminishing.

It's now 8pm, and I've fed him (alot) at 4pm, and then at 6.30pm and now he's still lunging for food, and there's pretty much nothing for him to go for.

i've a bottle, and a tetrapak of formula in teh cupboard, but I didn't ever use it with DS1, and I'm not really interested in starting now (although vistas of freedom come to mind if someone else could feed him it!).....

anything I can do in the next couple of hours, so we don't have a night of crying/upset.

I'm gutted. It's been a really stressful week, and turns out the doctor's right, it is my fault.

I know to go to domperidone if necessary, but obviously can't get that til tomorrow...



moondog Thu 06-Aug-09 11:14:53

Look ,the way milk works is like this:

The more you make the more you feed.

There'smilk there and milk being made all the time so just plug him back on.

What do yuo mean 'the doctor's right, it's my fault'??? What, some bog standard GP who knows nothing about breastfeeding??

YouLukaAmazing Thu 06-Aug-09 11:18:24

Message withdrawn

TrinityRhinoIsInDetention Thu 06-Aug-09 11:20:25

stop trying to work out if you have milk there

yuou do have milk there and the more your baby feeds the more milk will be there

please ignore your gp and keep

MrsBadger Thu 06-Aug-09 11:21:08

moony is spot on, you know

even if you feel empty, you're not

(what was that good analogy? oh yes)
imagine a tap constantly running and filling a great big jug
the jug gets full
you pour the jug into a glass and have a drink, and another one, and another one, and another one, till the jug is empty
the jug may be empty but the tap is still running
you can fill a glass from the tap without having to wait for the jug to fill up again

PfftTheMagicDragon Thu 06-Aug-09 11:22:27

Jackaroo, I assume what you are seeing is that there is no milk stored in your breasts, and when you feed your son, there is nothing for him?

Once you have used that store, your breasts simply make more. You will produce the milk as your child sucks and demands the milk. It's easy to feel as if there is nothing there, your breasts don't feel full, it's possible you can't express. But that doesn't mean it's not there. You could feed for hours and hours and still be able to produce milk.

Don't worry.

What did your GP say?

WhereTheWildThingsWere Thu 06-Aug-09 11:23:23

You are doing brilliantly, please don't worry, just plug him back on, your boobs are contantly replenishing supply, so they are never really 'empty'.

Get as much rest as possible, drink loads, and eat whatever you fancy.

PinkTulips Thu 06-Aug-09 11:24:26

boobs feeling empty is good, it means they're well drained which means they're going to be producing loads of milk. most womens bf boobs feel fairly soft and empty most of the time, it doesn't mean there's no milk i promise you.

4pm, 6.30 and 8 are actually really stretched out feeds for a very young baby... all three of mine would have fed far more often than that in the evenings, it's natural and good for babies to act like they're starved in the evening and cluster feed for hours, it doesn't mean they're not getting enough out.

Jackaroo Thu 06-Aug-09 11:24:54

Um, I know how milk works, and I know that it's made all the time, but MY son is not happy and is pulling off constantly and despite constant feeding for the last hour and half is still not there yet. It's coming up to night time here and we're all already exhausted (have had "proper" flu, 3 year old unsettled, moved house 2 weeks before the baby arrived, NOT by design, labour induced haematoma, and pylonephritis etc etc blah blah blah)....

So I asked for some advice, not to be patronised.

yes, a bog standard gp, doesn't mean it didn't get to me when he made the pronouncement, even if I knew that he was being unhelpful. I went to him about something else and mentioned it in passing so I was ridiculous enough to let it get to me.

You know the last time I posted yesterday, I just got empathic, helpful suggestions, the time before (some months ago)I was told that how I felt about bfding was "rubbish". obviously I was just lucky yesterday.

Sorry for cluttering up the board with such dense requests.

Jackaroo Thu 06-Aug-09 11:26:16

and that was to moondog, not the rest of you.

I do understand the concepts, and was just hoping there was something else I could do.

Thanks for the more supportive comments.

WhereTheWildThingsWere Thu 06-Aug-09 11:28:00

You sound very stressed, and it sound like you are having a really hard timesad.

Nobody is being patronizing, I'm sorry you think they are.

moondog Thu 06-Aug-09 11:28:00

Noone is being patronising, we're trying to help you. smile

If you know thisstuff already, that's great.

FWIW, my dd was a monster in the evenings and acted just like this.It was very stressful but I never ever felt it was mine or my body's fault. Babies get stressed and cranky in the evening. Fact of life.

PinkTulips Thu 06-Aug-09 11:30:59

jackaroo... all the posts here have been helpful and good advice, moondogs especially.

i'm sorry you're stressed and tired but if you're looking for someone to say 'it's ok, you tried, obviously you have no milk so just give him the formula' then you're unlikely to get that response here, you asked for help to bf... only you can give yourself permission to formula feed if that's what's right for you.

as for the pulling off, there are a thousand reasons he could be doing that and the least likely of all is lack of milk.

MrsBadger Thu 06-Aug-09 11:31:12

sad sorry if we haven't been helpful

but we didn;t know you knew how it worked, iyswim
lots of people don't

and we couldn;t know you'd been so ill, or that the GP had been an arse

but you sound like you are hanging in there anyway smile
have you something good lined up on tv for this evening? nice dinner in the offing?

Jackaroo Thu 06-Aug-09 11:32:11

I guess the difference is that he hasn't been like that at all up til now, and he has always fed every 3-4 hours, his choice, not mine, for him this is not usual.

DS1 fed every 1.5 hours for about 12 weeks, so know that all babies have different ways of doing things.

It also isn't just the evening, it's all day. Nights have been fine so far, I just wanted to try and protect them.

Better go and get on with it then.

misdee Thu 06-Aug-09 11:35:05

how old is he?

PinkTulips Thu 06-Aug-09 11:35:08

lol moondog... only one like that? pah... i had 3 cranky evening babies wink

tis true though... evenings just aren't a good time with babies... 90% of them turn into irritable angry little monsters no matter how they're fed. it eds at some point though... you've just got to breathe deeply and remind yourself constantly 'this too shall pass'. a dh handy who can baby dance for a while while you get a break is helpful though.

VulpusinaWilfsuit Thu 06-Aug-09 11:35:47

Jackaroo, sorry it's hard. I think you're reading meaning into some of the posts here. Have you got someone in person who can give you a bit of moral support, make a cup of tea, bring you a tiny piece of chocolate etc? Sounds like you need someone?

Anyhow, I think your baby is pulling on and off because he is building up the supply. This happens in fits and spurts and sometimes takes 2-3 days of doing this every hour or so. it is often called cluster feeding, 'frequency days' or 'growth spurts'. It is for some of us one of the hardest bits of BF because just when you think you've got it cracked, this happens.

Please persevere and lie in bed if you can or on the sofa if not and let it happen. I promise you, if everything else is normal, it will settle down in a day or so...


PinkTulips Thu 06-Aug-09 11:37:08

is it likely he's caught the flu fromyou and is a bit off colour? if he's generally a happy chap then the most likely reason for this is sickness or teething... the teething would explain the pulling off too.

how old is he?

Jackaroo Thu 06-Aug-09 11:37:15

Oh good grief, no, it was the original response that seemed very abrupt.

PT, did you not see me say that I didn't want to FF? I BF DS1 for 13 months, if that's more acceptable. OK, now I'm really going, I can't believe this has turned out like this.

PS Mrs B - thanks - I wasn't telling you all that stuff about being ill because it was relevant to the post, just because I didnt' want MD to think I was being lazy in dreading a tricky night. Stupid, I know.

moondog Thu 06-Aug-09 11:37:19


They are such hard work aren't they, little babies?
Lovely as they are.....

PinkTulips Thu 06-Aug-09 11:39:44

too true moondog... although in some ways i find the hard work of a baby mentally easier than a toddler's utter madness. at least you know where you stand with sleep deprivation and colic.... tantrums about socks baffle me grin

moondog Thu 06-Aug-09 11:40:37

Who looks forward to a tricky night?
Nobody! You sound like you have had a really hard time and fwiw [not that what ithink matters a jot-what you and the people caring for you think is what is important] I think you sound like a bloody hero.

Oh ,and your GP needs a boot up the arse.

Jackaroo Thu 06-Aug-09 11:41:18

OK, thank you, very helpful.

He's 6 weeks. I know, it will change again, I'm just trying so hard to protect us all from PND striking again (it was major last time) as so far this has been a great experience, which I never thought I'd say (having a baby that is).

today is the first day I've felt as if I'm panicking and close to sliding, and it's terrifying. Especially when bfding was one thing I thought I had covered.

VW, spot on I guess, just when I thought I could truly enjoy this, it all goes pear shaped (I would normally say tits up).

Thanks again.

PinkTulips Thu 06-Aug-09 11:46:59

nobody thinks you're being lazy jackaroo... we presumed from your original post that you were talking about a newborn and had had shitty advice which is sadly very common on this board. we responded as we would in that situation... and tbh, i think most of the advice still stands even though you've explained more now.

nighttime with a cranky baby, especially when you're unwell, is a horrible prospect and we all empathise with you for being desperate for a solution.

have you tried co-sleeping? i couldn't cope with my babies if i didn't haul them into the bed with me and doze while they feed... especially when i'm sick and they're grumpy. night feeding is the biggest boost to milk supply too so allowing him to feed all night while you sleep will do wonders for supply if there is an issue there.

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