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Breastfed baby, can I expect some sort of routine, at some point??

(50 Posts)
Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 12:33:45

DS is 5 weeks, he was big at birth so he feeds about 12 times in 24 hours. No routine whatsoever, he has slept between feeds some nights, others stays awake for a while. But I find the days hard without knowing when he'll be likely to feed as I have a 7 y/o DD (bottle fed so she had a routine very early on) and I need to do school runs, activities, etc. Sometimes if DS is hungry I can't just stop and feed him, and I resorted to staying at home all day today but he has emptied my boobs and am going bonkers. Is there any hope for a routine...?

teaandbiscuitsforme Thu 09-Feb-17 12:40:18

Yes, but it might not happen for a while yet and it probably won't work in the same way as a FF baby.

I'm currently BF 5 week old DS and BF my DD. I think it's hard to do feeding on demand to a timed routine but you can create a routine without including BF if that makes sense.

Don't worry about when he was last fed, how often baby feeds, how long the feed was, etc. Just feed as often as baby wants and whenever you can. So if you know you're doing the school run, plan to feed 20-30 minutes before you have to set off. Then build your 'routine' around the time that things that have to happen and BF in between.

Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 12:57:36

Yes, Intry to do that. I am also thinking about walks and outings, I have a couple of mummy friends, met one yesterday for a walk and couldn't feed DS when he woke up and he was fussy all evening after. I have to always meet people indoors so I can feed whenever. I am finding it very hard. But I keep thinking its only a few months!

teaandbiscuitsforme Thu 09-Feb-17 13:01:38

It's really hard, especially in winter. With DD, if we were out I'd just stop and feed her on a bench or something. I also did a lot of feeding in the car, not to hide but just because it was convenient! And I did a lot of preemptive feeds so I'd feed if we were going out or had stopped whilst we were out even if she'd fed quite recently.

Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 13:10:17

It's freezing here, can't possibly feed outside sad I am happy to feed in the car but he often falls sleep after a drive.

Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 13:12:12

Today for example he is feeding right now, don't think he'll want to again before the school run so am hoping he will not want to!

savagehk Thu 09-Feb-17 13:14:05

Try offering a feed before you need to leave?

Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 13:31:56

Yeah I can try, but my boobs feel so empty

teaandbiscuitsforme Thu 09-Feb-17 13:34:29

Sorry, I wasn't suggesting you feed outside! I just meant that that's what I'd done with summer born DD. I did used to aim to get somewhere 15 mins early if I wanted her to feed and then go to sleep whilst I was walking or having coffee or whatever.

I'd offer him a feed before the school run. Remember you can't overfeed a BF baby so it's always better to offer. DS never seems to refuse at the moment! hmm

savagehk Thu 09-Feb-17 13:35:14

Boobs do stop feeling full and start producing on demand instead (bye bye Dolly Parton!) so it's worth a try smile

ThisIsANormalLife Thu 09-Feb-17 13:36:04

I would say at only 5 weeks, despite feeling 'empty' your supply is still going to be adjusting to requirements, and allowing him to nurse frequently will encourage it. It is a pain, my bf dc never really understood the meaning of 'routine' so maybe ignore any of my advice! wink

teaandbiscuitsforme Thu 09-Feb-17 13:37:05

Don't worry about empty boobs, they just start to settle down. I think the Milk Meg says they're always at least 1/3 full and will be producing milk all the time. I think the phrase is that breasts are factories not warehouses- always producing, not about storage.

Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 13:37:42

DS had a couple of days refusing which was very distressing (have a thread on it) but today he is happy to feed, so I'll try that. As I say boobs feel empty tho, he just eats so much!

Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 13:39:28

Thanks everyone!

Cakescakescakes Thu 09-Feb-17 13:41:31

That overly full feeling in your boobs does settle down around now. Don't worry your body is just getting in tune with the baby.

Isadora2007 Thu 09-Feb-17 13:51:24

Feeling empty does not mean you aren't producing enough. It's almost the opposite- your boobs are now able to supply on demand and won't feel engorged nearly as often- maybe just first thing or if he misses a feed etc.
Within the next few months feeds will become less frequent and last shorter too so it does become much easier and no faff of bottles and heating etc so all this will be worth it in the end! Honest.

UndersecretaryofWhimsy Thu 09-Feb-17 13:53:13

Do you have a sling? With a bit of practice many people can feed on the go in a sling.

Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 14:28:03

I have a bad back so I can't use slings or carriers, pregnancy was bad enough and now my back is recovering from that!
Unfortunately I am going to stop breastfeeding around June as we are getting married in August so I often wonder if all this work is going to bring so little enjoyment sad
As much as I love him am not enjoying my maternity leave very much so far...

UndersecretaryofWhimsy Thu 09-Feb-17 14:39:28

It does get better. 5 weeks is still very very small and usually by about 12 weeks things are much better and easier - baby feeds less frequently and both of you have it down to an art. It's also much less hassle than prepping bottles. The early weeks can be challenging but I can say that it was more than worth it for me.

steppemum Thu 09-Feb-17 14:42:21

mine all did fall into a routine.
But can I just say none of mine would ever do a top up feed.
The idea of offerign them some milk before you go out, so you can be out for longer was a non starter. None of them would do it unless they had decided they were hungry.

Kione Thu 09-Feb-17 16:18:02

Same here, DS was fast sleep and would not feed but thankfully didn't wake up until we came back.
I can't wait even to know when we will be going to bed...

ODog Thu 09-Feb-17 21:18:17

The early days of breastfeeding are really hard but you are almost 'over the hump'. You will definitely reap the rewards between now and June if that's when you plan to stop.

My tips are:

1.feed baby up before you do school run etc (doesn't work for all babies as DD wouldn't feed unless she was hungry but most will take it if it's on offer)
2. Get a sling and learn to feed in it. Not easy and not a solution for all/most feeds but handy for the odd one on the go.
3. Get confident feeding where ever you are. Outside feeding is fine - it's never cold enough in the UK for your nipple to freeze off so a park bench is fine for feeding if you are out and about.
4. Don't overthink it or try to compare to FF. don't look for patterns. You will notice them when they appear and then notice them disappear the next week . I actually enjoy the fact there is no set feeding times. I would hate to be clock watching all the time.

JugglingMuggle Fri 10-Feb-17 13:29:04

Both mine were breastfed. I managed to get my first into a routine at 4 months old, after getting completely fed up with his snacking, and following 2 weeks of careful feeding/expressing. So my second was gently trained from day one. I expressed a little after every long feed, so that my milk supply was increased, and it gradually pushed the gaps between feeds as LO was taking a good amount, so that by 6-7 weeks LO had regular infrequent feeds at the breast, and was sleeping well at night.

theothercatpurred Fri 10-Feb-17 17:37:32

May I ask why getting married means you are giving up BFing?

Just asking as you may find that once you get there you don't actually want to, it might be worth exploring some options. By the time you get to 7 months (did I work that out right?) things are a lot more flexible. You might be able to mix feed and go back to BFing - if you want to that is!

ineedbanoffee Fri 10-Feb-17 19:27:10

I have a six week old daughter and two older DDs. I never have a routine and I don't let that stop me going out at all. I obviously feed her in the mornings before the school run, and when we get back after. I have a sling - YOU NEED A SLING - she falls asleep in that even if she's peckish (not if she's absolutely starving, but she would seriously have to be hungry and have been waiting for a LONG time before it would stop her sleeping). I go to the park, friends' houses, cafes, my daughters' ballet/climbing/swimming classes - I just feed her whenever she wants when we're there. She falls asleep in the car but if she wakes up and is crying for a feed I just pull over somewhere and feed her there. I would feed in the park if it was freezing too - I'd just make sure she and I were both wrapped up smile My advice - just do what you want and the baby will fall in with it. I feed all the flipping time!

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