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Normal reaction to stressful times (DS feeds for up to 2 hours and won't be put down) or PND?

(10 Posts)
bohemianbint Mon 06-Oct-08 11:31:28

DS is 6 weeks old, and I have DS1 is 25 months.

DS2 has been a much easier baby so far, but has suddenly started to feed for up to 2 hours at a time, and fairly often as well, so am absolutely shattered and getting quite disturbed sleep at night as well. He's sleeping in the bed with me which makes for a much better night's sleep (for everyone but me) but I quite literally cannot put him down without him waking up and crying. I carry him in a sling most of the time so that I can get things done, but it's very difficult when it comes to having a shower or changing DS1's nappy, and I'm starting to wonder if I have "made a rod for my own back" as all the old biddies are intent on telling me. I intended to do it htis way and I'm pleased that it seems to be paying dividends in some ways, but I'm starting to see the problems with it and I don't know how to deal with them.

Anyway, DS has just gone back to work after his second lot of paternity leave (2 weeks off, 2 weeks back, 2 more off and back again today) and I'm really struggling again. I spent 3 hours trying to get us ready for playgroup before giving it up - DS2 wants feeding all the time, won't be put down and between the 2 of them we just can't get out of the house. I've ended up breaking down in tears and now I feel terrible because I think it scared DS1, and all he's done all morning is watch Cbeebies while I constantly feed and hold DS2.

I'm starting to wonder if there's more to this than just having a hard time though. Granted, DS1 is extremely boisterous, and needs space and fresh air to run around. We live in a terrace with no garden and the park is crap, even if we could actually get there. I get no support from my family, who have carried on as normal since I gave birth and despite living a mile away, have not hardly been round, let alone helped out. Half the family only actually saw DS2 for the first time yesterday and no one seems terribly interested. My biological mother who I was reconciled with last year after 8 years of not being in touch has actually turned out to be really good and offering to help, but she lives on the other side of the country, and my parents (dad and stepmum) are being really funny with me because they think I should have nothing to do with her. We just want some help and it's not like they're offering.

So I'm finding I'm very stressed,( I'm worrying a lot about death), am on a short fuse and crying a lot today. Is that fair enough, do you think, or signs of PND? I did have quite bad depression about 8 years or so ago in my early 20's, but never had it since. And how much can you talk to professionals about this? I'm worried what might happen if they think I can't cope, and I dont want AD's in case they interfere with the BF.

Thanks if you've waded through all of this. Would be really grateful for some perspective.

bohemianbint Mon 06-Oct-08 11:46:01

Also DS2 is growing rapidly - he's really long and moving into 3-6months clothes already. We're all tall, and I would put the constant feeding down to a growth spurt, but it's gone on days now...

Spidermama Mon 06-Oct-08 12:30:36

It's very hard work with two this age and when you're hainvg to feed so often for so long.

Ignore the 'rod for your own back' crap because it's wrong.

Have you got a decent sligh? I used a wilkinet with all my four and it meant they slept and I could carry on as normal (albeit with them strapped onto me) and they slept more. I also tried to sleep when they did in the day time. Nap whenever you can.

I had the babies in bed with me too so that there was minimal disruption to my sleep when feeding in the night.

Have you asked your family to come and help? It sounds like you could do with it.

Sorry you're having it so rough. sad

bohemianbint Mon 06-Oct-08 12:37:30

Thank you for posting Spidermama! I've got an ergo which is on the whole very good - but I did get a bit worried when cooking breakfast this morning that I was going to set fire to the baby's foot...hmm

Doesn't help that we had to put DS2 into a proper bed recently (before he injured himslef!) so where I used to get a good break in the day while he had a nap, I now have to wrestle with him to try to get him to stay in bed.

My family are too busy, or something, to help. I'm starting to really resent them for it, but trying very hard not to.

foxytocin Mon 06-Oct-08 12:37:45

have you learnt to bf in a sling? not the answer to all to your probs but a start.

Tangle Mon 06-Oct-08 16:04:34

Sorry you're having such a hard time

I'm not expert, but I've a friend that does social work part time and had a DS a few days before I did. He had colic and she spent about 2 months rarely getting more than 3 hours broken sleep a night shock. The HV kept wanting to do the "are you depressed" questionaire and she refused on the grounds she would never give it to a patient of hers that was so sleep deprived as the results would be meaningless. DD has never been a great sleeper. It doesn't take many worse-than-normal nights to push me into a wreck that cries at the drop of a hat and visualises all sorts of horrible things. One of my MWs reckoned it was fairly normal - her DH was 10 minutes late home one time she had a newborn, by the time he walked through the door she'd practically planned the funeral... From that (very sketchy) basis what you're describing could well fit into the range of normal baby-blues.

That said if you are feeling very low and very stressed, I think you should try and find someone to talk to. How well do you know your GP and HVs? They're the obvious people to talk to and they should be there to support you. Round here there are a couple of schemes that offer longer term postnatal support to parents that need it for whatever reason - there may be something similar near you, and the HVs would be the best people to advise on that. Even if there's nothing concrete they can offer, just talking things through and hearing an official "its normal" could help a lot. And if they do think its more than the baby blues, at least you'll know for sure (rather than adding it to the list of things to worry about) and you can always so "no" to ADs.

Re. your parents, have you or your DH talked to them explicitly about the amount of help they're (not) giving you? If they haven't seen you much since DS2 was born, do they know that you could really do with a hand?

I know none of the history so this may be a non-starter, but is there any millage in putting DS1 back into a cot for a week or so until DS2 stops feeding quite so much?

I'd also suggest learning to BF in a sling. You could also look at different types - if you're worried about his feet sticking out in the kitchen maybe consider a wrap or a ring sling where you can tuck him all inside. Even if they're not as comfortable for you as the Ergo it might be comfortable enough for the time you need.

Don't discount a growth spurt just yet - they'll often just be a day, but DD had a few that lasted longer than that. The frequent feeding will pass, and a couple of days watching CBeebies won't kill DS1.

Lastly - ignore the "rod for your own back" garbage. How can the old biddies know he'd be any better if you did things differently? You're giving your DS a wonderful, secure start in life and doing an amazing job in difficult circumstances.

(and you thought you wrote an essay blush)

cole1 Mon 06-Oct-08 21:01:03

Well done sweet heart for doing such a fantastic job and dont let anyone tell you different.....keep going sweet mine are twenty month apart and I thought my life was over in the first year but two years on I am starting to recognise myselfwink

cole1 Mon 06-Oct-08 21:01:03

Well done sweet heart for doing such a fantastic job and dont let anyone tell you different.....keep going sweet mine are twenty month apart and I thought my life was over in the first year but two years on I am starting to recognise myselfwink

bohemianbint Tue 07-Oct-08 16:23:49

thankyou, foxy, tangle and cole for the replies - I feel better for the solidarity!

The feeding has eased off a bit today thankfully, and we did even manage to get out of the house for a bit, so am feeling a bit better. I should have known it was a spurt and would pass, but when it's yourself, you can't see the wood for the trees sometimes!

I'm assuming things will get easier when they get a bit older....will they? hmm

Tangle - really reassuring to hear that your DS is a lovely confident chap as a result - good to know it will pay off!

cole1 Tue 07-Oct-08 22:50:03

oh they do I am livivng proof .... keep smiling grin

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