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I'm due in a week and can't shake off this feeling that I'm going to not succeed at bf

(46 Posts)
HeinzSight Fri 07-Aug-09 20:35:28

I'm expecting baby No 4 next week and didn't quite manage to breastfeed my other 3, lots of reasons, with my last baby the main reason for giving up was PND and given the wrong advise by professionals about medication and BF.

Up until this week I have been more determined than ever to 'crack it' but recently I've been getting more and more feelings of no confidence.

Please come and tell me I can do it and how why etc etc.

HeinzSight Fri 07-Aug-09 20:36:48

Sorry just re -read title and apologies for the inarticulateness!!!

undomesticatedgoddess Fri 07-Aug-09 20:48:41

Sounds like you were failed by HCPs sad

I didn't BF my DS1 but have succeeded with DS2. I put this down to realistic expectations, support from NCT counsellor, stubborness, him being a different baby, mumsnet and surrounding myself with people who think BF is the norm.

Have you looked at the support available in your area and seeking it out before you give birth? Do it before you're sleep deprived and can think straight.

I really do wish you luck.

HeinzSight Fri 07-Aug-09 20:53:48

good idea undomesticated. I've instructed DH to be my driving force this time too. Before he was always following my lead and happy to go along with my decision.

He used training for a marathon as an analogy to me earlier, about having clear expectations and understanding taht I will hit hurdles but that I can overcome them.

elkiedee Fri 07-Aug-09 20:57:00

Heinz, like undom I succeeded with DS2 after failing to with DS1 and being very sad about it. I did have real difficulties at the beginning but kept asking for help - although we were pushed into mixed feeding I phased out the formula within a few weeks and returned to exclusive breastfeeding by 6 weeks.

Do you have any bf support groups near you? Generally pregnant women are welcome to go along and talk beforehand. Also find out about whether there are people local to you who you can make contact beforehand and then talk to them again when you need to, that way they won't be strangers if you need to talk to them after the birth.

Did you have pnd with babies 1 and 2?

My other suggestion is come back and post here, I found the virtual handholding very valuable both when I was sad first time round, but even more so when I was working through things and getting conflicting advice this time.

jujumaman Fri 07-Aug-09 20:59:06

Think a bit more info is needed when you say "fail to crack" - how long did you manage?

The key imo is bloody mindedness, knowing most women find it very very tough at some point but if you soldier on you will get over the hump. Good bf counsellors etc can help a lot. But without knowing exactly what the problem was it's hard to advise more. Wish you luck.

elkiedee Fri 07-Aug-09 20:59:06

HS, that's a good idea. With DS1 dp was happy to use formula, but this time while he found it hard, he knew how important it was to me. I think he also read up a lot on bf and other feeding methods on his own, including on mumsnet. Bless him. Having your nearest and dearest know this is what you want to do and want to help you do that is very helpful.

HeinzSight Fri 07-Aug-09 21:01:04

Yes, had PND with 1 and 2 aswell. I'm already on medication (Sertraline), started a week or so ago in the hope that it lessens the severity of PND. It really was very VERY bad last time. I wasn't eating properly etc.

Only problem with getting to support groups at the moment is the school holidays. DS1 is 12 and DS2 is 10, DD 23 months. I've got a couple of friends who have said they will support me, but I am also surrounded by lots of people who 'don't get' breastfeeding and almost frown upon it sad

HeinzSight Fri 07-Aug-09 21:06:56

juju, DS1 I managed 1 day, felt incredibly bullied by midwives, wasn't given any help or advise on latch, nipples bled straight away and had suffered a nasty childbirth tear and was feeling resentful towards baby.

DS2, I managed about 3 days, PND kicked in and was told I could BF because of medication.

DD I had a c-section, milk supply was v sparce compared to last two times, again, midwives didn't help with latch but were happy to give formula whilst I stayed in hospital, I think DD was v confused by the time she was a week old and would get v frustrated at the nipple, I was put on medication for PND and again told not to BF. I tried for weeks to keep my supply up by expresing straight into the sink but my supply dried up really quickly sad

This time I have sought advise from 'top' professionals who know what they're doing and have been given the correct info about medication and BF. So I know that medication won't be an issue this time.

I guess I feel that because of what's happened in the past, it's knocking my confidence dreadfully this time.

HeinzSight Fri 07-Aug-09 21:07:49

DS2, I managed about 3 days, PND kicked in and was told I couldn't BF because of medication.

cvyes Fri 07-Aug-09 21:09:10

Oh guys am so sorry to hear your sad stories, I only bf dd1 for 4 weeks & it was bllodly hard work. Then before dd2 was born I was diagnosed with depression but with help from local breast feeding support group I bf her til 9mths. With 3rd dd I was also suffering depression & was on setraline but managed to bf her for over a year. My best advice to you is to RELAX and make sure your baby has a full mouth of boob GOOD LUCK

HeinzSight Fri 07-Aug-09 21:09:52

Thank you cvyes x

undomesticatedgoddess Fri 07-Aug-09 21:14:12

OK am a bit blush now. DH knew how important BF ing was to me this time and has been very supportive.

So yes get your DP to read up on it before hand.

I think BFing should come with the tag line "will power needed" like the nicotine patches! Easier said than done though with PND.

I also read the politics of breast feeding which made me even more determined.

Lots of us lurk on the feeding threads and I find there is lots of support if you post a thread.

Sorry it's Friday night and I'm getting a bit random.

mollymawk Fri 07-Aug-09 21:14:54

My suggestion is to try as hard as you can to expect to do pretty much nothing else but sit about feeding or cuddling the baby. Now, you will obviously need other people to enable you to do that since you have the other 3 already! Who have you got to help with the practicalities of cooking/cleaning etc? Can you enlist the DSs?

mollymawk Fri 07-Aug-09 21:19:54

Also, in my experience it hurt A LOT! My midwife gave me some stuff called Jelonet (apparently this is a burns treatment!) which helped wih that. But it only really hurt badly for the first two or three weeks.

jujumaman Fri 07-Aug-09 21:29:12

poor you heinz, but it;s brilliant you are prepared to try again - I'm sure I'd just decide it wasn't for me. It sounds like you really need a lot of help with the initial latch - does the hospital you're going to have any bf counsellors on site to help in the first couple of days. Any problems, you need to INSIST you see one or failing that a mw who can give you good advice. Use helplines and mumsnet if getting out to a group is tricky, though surely you could leave the older two and take the 23 month every now and then.

Remember early feeds can take hours and be very frequent. I know it's not easy with all your dcs but try to see it as an enforced break - in the evenings when the others are in bed stock up on dvds you want to watch and magazines and read and watch telly while you feed to make it seem like a bit of a luxury. Remember the pain will go - if indeed you have any - after a couple of weeks. Remember if your latch is at all dodgy to take the baby off and start again.

Rely on the friends who will support you, avoid those who don't get it. Once more, I really admire you for giving it a shot and wish you loads of luck.

hairymelons Sat 08-Aug-09 11:16:51

It was a difficult set of circumstances that prevented you from BFing in the past- it's no reflection on whether or not you'll do it with this baby

You'll be absolutely fine this time, you've got your medication sorted and are enlisting support already so you've won half the battle.

It can be tough going the first few weeks but just take it one day at a time. And if you do run into difficulties, there will be plenty of support for you on here!

I used the LLL helpline a LOT when my son was little, found it really helpful 0845 120 2918. Also the Breastfeeding Network website has loads of useful information.

I also second the enlisting help idea- if you can concentrate on feeding your baby (which can be time consuming in the early days!) it makes life much easier.

Best of luck to you

4andnotout Sat 08-Aug-09 11:22:04

I am successfully bfing dd4 (9 mo) after failing to bf the other 3 so it can be done

comewhinewithme Sat 08-Aug-09 12:33:11

Hi Heinz I have botlefed 5 dc and am now bf my 10 week old dd .

I felt let down and had no support with my other dc but I was determined to bf with this baby and I did I found the best advice on here and there is always someone around to help .

I hope it all goes well for you .

ermintrude13 Sat 08-Aug-09 12:44:11

Lots of good advice here; the other thing I'd recommend is, because you are aware of that you're worried about it, do things to help you relax physically as well as emotionally: Either make sure housework is done by someone else or sod the housework. Have plenty of big cushions around to help support the baby and bring him/her up to you so that your shoulders aren't all hunched over and you don't get neck strain. Enlist other DC to bring you a cuppa, the TV remote and the phone whenever you sit down to feed, and make sure they listen out for the doorbell so you don't have to be disturbed. Carry a muslin everywhere so that you can cover yourself if you anxious about feeding in front of people- or just don't see people until you're ready. Building up supply in the early days is just a question of doing very little else and I've loved that time with my 3 DC; letting go of most other things and just nurturing the baby has been really liberating smile

It's perfectly possible that it won't be painful (although it's always a bit of a weird sensation at first) so a bit of optimisim is in order! Good luck with the birth and afterwards xx

Cadelaide Sat 08-Aug-09 12:45:21

Maybe you're looking too far ahead Heinz, anticipating problems that don't exist yet?

Whilst it's good to plan and learn from your previous experience, also try to take the bf one day at a time, and see each day that you you bf as a triumph.

Good Luck.

HeinzSight Sat 08-Aug-09 13:29:59

Thank you all so much. Brilliant advise here (as usual smile). What's also fantastic are the posts from people in a similar situation as me, ie after 'failing' (I HATE using that word but pregnant brain won't let me think of another one at the minute blush) to BF with previous babies you have managed it with your current baby. That in itself has given me a HUGE confidence boost and I thank you enormously.

My SIL described BF as a 'leap of faith' in that you can't see what the baby is taking, you just have to assure yourself the baby is getting what it needs.

I remember breastfeeding DD and when she'd finished there was milk on the corner of her mouth, I know this sounds stupid, but I was just AMAZED that I'd been able to do that for her.

comewhinewithme Sat 08-Aug-09 13:44:09

Heinz I know what you mean about been amazed I am amazed every time Dd gets weighes and has put weight on ...I still can't quite get my head round the fact that my milk is making her thrive .

As a previous poster said don't stress about problems that haven't happened yet and take one day at a time .

comewhinewithme Sat 08-Aug-09 13:47:23

Every time DD gets weighed .

HeinzSight Sat 08-Aug-09 13:58:18

Good advice, one day at a time

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