Joanie... you've gotten a lot of great responses as usual, so I'm just going to throw in some more encouragement. You simply cannot spoil a baby. She communicates a need and you meet it, that's what parenting is about. If you read books like The Happiest Baby on the Block or The Continuum Concept or even sections of several of the Dr. Sears books, you'll see that expectations of infants to fall into patterns (nurse every 3 hours, sleep through the night by 4 months, etc.) are largely constructs of western culture. They are expectations that baby should fit into our schedules instead of us rearranging our schedules to fit baby's needs. In cultures where these expectations are not put on babies, those babies magically do not experience colic. Why? Because mothers there are expected to attend to baby's needs immediately, night and day, and they are supported in this job by their culture. These cultures also understand that a baby should never be left to cry it out. Of course, this more intensive kind of parenting is not easy and it's not well supported in our culture, so it can feel overwhelming. When it reaches this overwhelming point it is paramount that you seek help and find ways to restore balance to your routine. Getting together with like-minded parents is an excellent way to get help, support, and advice. While MDC can offer virtual support, all moms need IRL support as well.
My first nursed pretty much every 30-60 minutes during the day and every 90 minutes at night for the first 2 years of her life. It was quite the adjustment for me to realize that she wasn't going to fall into the "typical" pattern that other babies seemed to have. It felt like I never got a break- she'd finish up nursing and then I'd have to hold her- she wouldn't let me put her down either- and then it was back to nursing again. But things absolutely do change and when she found her fingers around 4 months old, that helped some. Also when I realized that there are other types of carriers out there besides the pouch sling (which she hated) I found that carrying could lengthen the amount of time between nursing sessions. But it's really important to keep in mind that you haven't even hit that 6 week mark yet. Your milk is still regulating and she is still figuring out how to nurse. Once your breastfeeding relationship is well established you may find that she is so efficient that she can get what she needs quickly and doesn't need to nurse again for a while. And this is just a blip in the big scheme of things... in just a few short months she'll be sitting up, then crawling, then eating solids, then walking, talking, etc. So much will change in a relatively quick period of time and this newborn period of intense physical needs will be a memory.
Originally Posted by seraf
Neither of my older kids would take a bink. Shay can't figure it out, but he will happily lick one in the car when nursing is unavailable. I think it's a combination of luck and magic. Maybe the kids who won't take them are just working toward a career as food critics.
This cracked me up! But I will say that my children all have intense oral needs and all three have found their fingers/thumbs and learned to soothe themselves. Dd was the slowest at 4 months. Ds1 figured it out by about 2 months, and Avery just found his thumb today, though it will take some more time for him to reliably be able to get it in his mouth and keep it there. But it's been my experience that fingers are way better than pacis since they can't get lost and the child can put them back in. Yes, we'll need to deal with them breaking the habit at a later age, but I much prefer this than dealing with weaning from a paci.