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Breastfeeding Support - Page 5

post #81 of 242

I know this is the result of one or two bad days, but I am really beginning to resent breastfeeding.  DH is out of town, so that makes it worse.  Piper has been cluster feeding since noon yesterday.  And by that I mean she has literally been at my breast almost non-stop that entire time.  She took a nap from 6-7 last night and I thought that because she'd been awake the entire day that she would sleep well at night.  No such luck.  She was up every 45 minutes to feed and got frustrated because her latch is lazy when she's tired, so the only way she would nurse was if I was bolt upright in bed.  I was hoping we could get a good few hours of sleep in this morning, but she's just falling asleep at the breast and waking up if I move at all.  So now I'm in the horrible situation of watching her sleep and not being able to sleep at all myself.  I spent a lot of last night just crying in frustration and am now on the verge of tears as I type this.  She didn't sleep well the night before last either, so I'm running on totally empty.  My MIL and mother are both in town, but she won't take a pacifier or anything except the boob, so I feel like it's useless to call someone in.  My mom's coming over this afternoon at any rate, so I'll at least be able to take a shower and put clothes on.  But I'm exhausted and angry and frustrated.  I really really hate feeling like this about what should be a special relationship.  Instead, I feel like a damn cow.  My nipples are raw from her lazy latching and being on my boob non-stop for 24 hours and I don't even have the energy to correct her latch anymore because I'm so freaking tired and even with a poor latch it prevents her from fussing and crying. 

 

I guess what I'm so frustrated about is that we had a pretty good system up until two days ago.  She was sleeping three hours or so between feedings at night and she would cluster feed during the day, which was fine by me since it meant (I thought) that she would sleep at night.  Now I'm just totally screwed.  I have no idea what to do about it.  I know it will get better when DH gets home and there's at least someone to burp her or hold her when she's fussy at night, but right now I'm running on so little sleep that I'm feeling pretty hopeless.  I'm also worried that she's not getting enough, since her nursing seems less efficient than it was earlier this week, her latch seems shallower, and she ends up spitting up seemingly most of what goes in.  Ugh.  I feel like crap.  Sorry for the vent, everyone.  I'm just so exhausted...

post #82 of 242

Lilytiger - hugs to you, lady...  I had a meltdown yesterday due to Kenzie's non stop feeding and feeling like a cow. Tried going for a drive but lasted 20 mins before having to come home to relieve my engorged self.   Hope the shower/change of clothes will help you feel a bit better this afternoon.

post #83 of 242

LilyTiger - Chant with me: This too shall pass. This too shall pass. Seriously, though, I've been there. Piper must be going through a growth spurt or something. It will not be like this forever. I PROMISE! Have you tried wearing her in a Moby wrap so that she's close but you can still use your hands? I find that if I'm feeling frustrated, I just put my daughter in the wrap and she's content and I can get things done. If you haven't been wrapping every day, it might take a bit to get used to (for both of you). I always tell people that they should put their baby in the wrap for at least an hour every day to establish it as a "safe place." So when your kid is fussy, you put them in the wrap and they calm down. 

 

My bottom line - it sucks (no pun intended), but it will pass!!! Hang in there!

post #84 of 242
Thread Starter 

Lily, hug2.gif This sounds like such a tough situation, especially to deal with by yourself! You are doing great. I remember reading somewhere "Am I supposed to love breastfeeding all the time?" and the answer was definitely no from anyone who has done it.

I know this probably just seems like one more thing to deal with, and I personally disliked asking people to get up in my business after giving birth and going though a hospital readmission, but have you talked to a LC lately? I know you talked to the hospital LCs when she was in the NICU, but she's a big girl now with big girl issues! You said things have changed in the past week so maybe talking to someone would help.

I am certainly not an expert, but if you can get help correcting her latch or diagnosing the problem, then maybe she won't need to nurse quite as long and you and your nipples can get a break.

This is also a totally unpopular thing to say, but I know you said she had a pacifier in the hospital, I bet they probably put sugar water on it to get her to take it, I watched them do it for Lyle. Also could be tried with a pinky finger?

Glad your mom is coming and I hope you feel better! Update us when you can.

post #85 of 242

LilyTiger - Hopefully my little guy will stay asleep long enough to respond! I totally feel your pain on a baby who is sleeping who won't let you do the same. And from everything I've read, it's totally normal to have times when breastfeeding isn't a blissful bonding experience. And if it's abnormal, well, we can be weird together! Up until recently, I also had a baby who wouldn't take a pacifier (he still takes it only fitfully and with some effort), and went through phases of wanting to be on the boob a lot. My guess is Piper may be spitting up because she's getting too much milk - she really just wants comfort, but is ending up with more milk (and/or air) in her than she can really handle. I know Baby Bird has had that problem. The other thing I've found is that, even when what he wanted was boob, Baby Bird could often be soothed by someone walking with him and holding him. I've watched my mom, Pirate's mom, and Pirate's sister all work that magic. For hours even, on some occasions. I think part of the deal is that they are just more calm and more patient than my poor, sleep-deprived, sore-nippled self. Since they haven't been living with a newborn 24/7, they can still feel thrilled about snuggling him to them for hours, even if he's fussy some of that time. So if your mom and/or MIL is good with babies (I know not everyone is as lucky as I am), I would definitely, definitely call them and get a break for yourself. You might be amazed what someone who isn't you (and doesn't smell like milk!) can do for Piper. I know having family come has been a sanity-saver for me. And I would keep trying with a pacifier, if you're comfortable with that option. Most babies don't instinctively take to them. I was extremely reluctant to give my little one a pacifier, but I am so, so glad to have him willing to take one at least occasionally now, just to give my boobs a break when he isn't hungry. Anyway, hang in there, and know that you aren't alone. I've definitely had my fair share of 2 AM cries in the past two weeks... and cries at just about every other time of the day, too.

 

Okay, Baby Bird is wiggling again... maybe back with more about us later. But I got a nursing bra that fits yesterday... only took two hours in the store. :P But it's so much better!

post #86 of 242

Lily hug.gif Hope this helps a little bit 

http://kellymom.com/bf/normal/comfortnursing/

http://www.todaysparent.com/baby/breastfeeding/nursing-comfort?page=0,0

http://kellymom.com/bf/normal/love-breastfeeding-24-7/

I hope your DH will be back soon.

A LC could help, even if this is just a spurt they could provide reassurance.  Is there an LLL meeting you could attend for support?  


Edited by Sol_y_Paz - 9/5/12 at 7:46pm
post #87 of 242

Hugs, LilyTiger!!!  I can imagine how crazy that would make you, esp. being the only one (with the boobs) that can provide LO the comfort that they are constantly looking for w/no breaks!!  And nothing seems ok when you're that exhausted!!  Maybe, hopefully your Mom/MIL can provide her some kind of alternate comfort when they visit... or at least take care of YOU in some way (feed you, bathroom breaks, etc).  I just learned from my Doula that when babies are around Mama, they act differently than they would around other people - they can smell you, your breasts/milk and it triggers certain behavior - such as being super needy - vs. how they are around other people (yep, you are the chosen one!).... I hope things smooth out for you soon so you can get some rest!!

 

Sol - thanks for the links you've been providing - very helpful!

 

My Doula came for a visit yesterday and provided me w/some wonderful info, advice and support concerning my EP'ing dilemma.  Although I've been having the help of the public health nurse/LC these past few weeks, it was great to get another perspective on the situation.  She took one look at me and said "THIS is NOT a viable plan, it's not working!!  Time to change it RIGHT NOW."  After I mentioned to her how badly my boobs hurt from the constant pumping and my concerns that I wasn't making enough milk (based on the length of time I had to pump to get enough ounces) she pointed out that for some women mechanical pumps just don't work well and that although we can't see or measure how much comes out, babies are the most efficient at draining the breast - we just have to trust them and our bodies.  And with her help, she got William and I to successfully BREAST feed in the side lying position - with zero pain!!  It took some work (I would have given up sooner on my own based on his fussing) but she was able to read his body language and cues to determine that he was indeed sucking and getting milk down.  And sure enough, after 10 minutes BF'ing my engorged breast felt softer and emptier than it ever could have felt after 45 minutes of pumping!!  She actually suspects that I may have too much milk (contrary to my concerns) since I was leaking all over the place from both sides the whole time.

 

My new instructions are to STOP pumping altogether to give my poor boobies (and sanity) a break for the rest of the week.  To just keep trying BF'ing in the side lying position (on demand) now that we've had a successful go at it - for a few days before returning to other positions that were unsuccessful.  I can give a little formula if he can't seem satiated but she assured me that the time he spends on the boob will effectively keep up my supply and also drain me better than the pump could.  I'll have to focus on his diaper output now (as opposed to measuring the pumped ounces he was taking) and since we're no longer on a schedule, his on demand feeding might mean we're back to every 2 hours for a while (but it's still a good trade off for me!!).  I was able to stay in bed overnight and feed him laying down, every 2 hrs - it was SO nice!  We both desperately need baths now as we're covered in milk and my bed's full of sopping wet rags and towels - I guess a good problem to have though.  He's back to screaming again on the boobs today, but at least I know that he's sucking/swallowing and getting enough milk (if he can just calm down!).... so I'm trying to be patient.  I'm so thankful for this improvement!!!

 

post #88 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyTiger View Post

I know this is the result of one or two bad days, but I am really beginning to resent breastfeeding.  DH is out of town, so that makes it worse.  Piper has been cluster feeding since noon yesterday.  And by that I mean she has literally been at my breast almost non-stop that entire time.  She took a nap from 6-7 last night and I thought that because she'd been awake the entire day that she would sleep well at night.  No such luck.  She was up every 45 minutes to feed and got frustrated because her latch is lazy when she's tired, so the only way she would nurse was if I was bolt upright in bed.  I was hoping we could get a good few hours of sleep in this morning, but she's just falling asleep at the breast and waking up if I move at all.  So now I'm in the horrible situation of watching her sleep and not being able to sleep at all myself.  I spent a lot of last night just crying in frustration and am now on the verge of tears as I type this.  She didn't sleep well the night before last either, so I'm running on totally empty.  My MIL and mother are both in town, but she won't take a pacifier or anything except the boob, so I feel like it's useless to call someone in.  My mom's coming over this afternoon at any rate, so I'll at least be able to take a shower and put clothes on.  But I'm exhausted and angry and frustrated.  I really really hate feeling like this about what should be a special relationship.  Instead, I feel like a damn cow.  My nipples are raw from her lazy latching and being on my boob non-stop for 24 hours and I don't even have the energy to correct her latch anymore because I'm so freaking tired and even with a poor latch it prevents her from fussing and crying. 

 

I guess what I'm so frustrated about is that we had a pretty good system up until two days ago.  She was sleeping three hours or so between feedings at night and she would cluster feed during the day, which was fine by me since it meant (I thought) that she would sleep at night.  Now I'm just totally screwed.  I have no idea what to do about it.  I know it will get better when DH gets home and there's at least someone to burp her or hold her when she's fussy at night, but right now I'm running on so little sleep that I'm feeling pretty hopeless.  I'm also worried that she's not getting enough, since her nursing seems less efficient than it was earlier this week, her latch seems shallower, and she ends up spitting up seemingly most of what goes in.  Ugh.  I feel like crap.  Sorry for the vent, everyone.  I'm just so exhausted...

*hugs* my son was like this only he cluster fed for MONTHS. He didnt' take cat naps. He took kitten naps, and i could never put him down. Thankfully with baby #2, she likes being worn, so I can get more done AND take care of the toddler. (although not today apparently, everyone wants to lay on me in a  pile on the couch and that's FINE WITH ME) 

Have someone come over anyways, i know she won't take the bottle or a paci, but have someone come over, if she's in the arms of someone who is loving on her, it is NOT CIO. If you need someone to take the kid for 1/2 an hour to shower and take care of your personal hygiene it is also not cry it out. Just make sure who it is, just talks to her, and comforts her. 

I've been having different sleeping issues. Baby has been waking every 3 hours during the night, which is A'ok, but she wakes up the toddler who SCREAMS and keeps her awake, its like a vicious cycle... I wish the toddler still nursed....Last night he just sobbed inconsolably for hours, asking for me and my husband alternately. 

post #89 of 242
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewMumJoy View Post

 

My new instructions are to STOP pumping altogether to give my poor boobies (and sanity) a break for the rest of the week.  To just keep trying BF'ing in the side lying position (on demand) now that we've had a successful go at it - for a few days before returning to other positions that were unsuccessful.  I can give a little formula if he can't seem satiated but she assured me that the time he spends on the boob will effectively keep up my supply and also drain me better than the pump could.  I'll have to focus on his diaper output now (as opposed to measuring the pumped ounces he was taking) and since we're no longer on a schedule, his on demand feeding might mean we're back to every 2 hours for a while (but it's still a good trade off for me!!).  I was able to stay in bed overnight and feed him laying down, every 2 hrs - it was SO nice!  We both desperately need baths now as we're covered in milk and my bed's full of sopping wet rags and towels - I guess a good problem to have though.  He's back to screaming again on the boobs today, but at least I know that he's sucking/swallowing and getting enough milk (if he can just calm down!).... so I'm trying to be patient.  I'm so thankful for this improvement!!!

 

 

Joy, I'm so happy for you!

 

Lily, I'm sorry that you're having a rough patch right now.  I hope that things work themselves out with Piper and breastfeeding.

post #90 of 242

Thanks so much for the reassurance and support, everyone.  Last night was so much better, I can't even describe the relief.  She went down by midnight, nursed at 3:30 and again at 7:30 and that was it.  We even slept in until around 10am and while she wasn't in super deep sleep for that part, she was just chilling.  It was amazing to get that much sleep in a row.  I think part of it was a growth spurt, since she's up almost a pound since last week.  Her latch feels better and everything else is just so much better today.  We went out to lunch with a friend and even managed a doctor's appointment and trips to Starbucks and the pharmacy, all without a breakdown.  Pretty amazing what a difference a day can make.  It also helps that we're learning new things every day, each of which help with different aspects of coping.  We got side-lying down pretty well last night and today nursed in the car two or three times while out and about (obviously while parked...) and each time made me feel more capable of leading a normal life with a newborn.  That's a good feeling.

 

MonkeyScience, I think you hit the nail on the head...  She associates me with milk and so the normal soothing mechanisms just don't fly when I'm around.  If DH has her, she's fine being bounced or whatever.  I went to my parents' last night for dinner and while she was pretty fussy, it was amazing watching my dad calm her with his Bonanza routine (pretty freaking cute, by the way), while I wasn't able to do anything with her.  I think it's also, as you say, that I just can't be that patient or creative when I'm exhausted.  So I offer the boob and she takes it.  And then I feel like I've been nursing nonstop, which I have.  At any rate, things were much much better today.  DH gets home tonight, so I'm hoping I can get in a light workout and a shower.  On an unrelated note, DH also has to wash all three dogs, since I think I got poison ivy from one of them.  Super fun! 

 

Boots, we're working on getting her to take a pacifier.  I know it's not popular either, but in our case, I need a surrogate boob for when I'm at home alone and need a few seconds.  We'll keep trying things.  I've always wondered why she took a pacifier, however briefly, in the NICU.  I guess I have my answer now.  :(

 

Sally, the sling definitely helps, but I might try the Moby when it gets less hot since I think it will be easier to get her to sleep in it.  She sleeps in the sling on walks, but as soon as the motion stops, she's up again.  It's possible the moby might be better in that sense.

 

mtngrl, I hope your experience gets better soon!  For us, at least, I just have to remember that for every terrible day there's usually a few good days and that she's changing so much so quickly that nothing, not even massive nipple pain, is permanent.  It's so much easier to feel optimistic when you've had a good night's sleep, I'm finding.  eyesroll.gif

post #91 of 242

LilyTiger - So glad things have turned around! And yeah, my LO slept similarly night before last, and it was marvelous. Actually, other than getting him down last night, he slept well last night, too. But he has been FUSSY today! MIL hypothesizes it's the super-spicy Chinese food I had for lunch two days ago. No idea, but he certainly seems distressed, like something just isn't digesting right.

 

Okay, so... is anyone else having nipples/areolas/boobs in general that burn like crazy even AFTER the baby is done feeding? It doesn't happen every time, but when it does, OUCH! The burning is centered around the nipple/areola, but radiates out into the surrounding breast as well. Sometimes it burns during nursing, too, though it somehow feels worse afterwards. Not sure what this is all about. It's similar to the burning I get when he first latches on, though that usually fades with in a few seconds to a minute.

post #92 of 242
Thread Starter 

I'm getting sharp pains on the sides of my boobs, is this letdown pain? Or maybe just leftover engorgement aches, not sure...Mostly when nursing, but sometimes randomly.

post #93 of 242

I'm also getting some breast pain... I think some of it is letdown happening when he's not on the boob (like, if I watch A Baby Story, my boobs hurt every time a baby is born & starts crying). And on the breast that has the plugged duct (still there, ugggh) I sometimes get a pain way at the top and I'm not sure if it's engorgement pain or something else (please please please not another plugged duct!).

 

Last night the nipple pain on that side was so bad that I decided to pump instead of feeding him and... hooo boy, that was NOT fun. I was home alone and had to wash/sterilize the manual pump & the syringe to feed him, thaw out an ounce of frozen milk, get it into the syringe, and then feed it to him. Well, he was screaming halfway through the process and at one point I had to set him down and it sucked :(. I didn't even get to pump til my partner got home, but the break was good for my nipple at least. 

 

Needless to say, I definitely feel for the mamas flying solo, especially with breastfeeding challenges. It is hard enough for me doing it for ~8 hours in the evening 4-5x/week, and that's followed by his dad taking over almost the second he's in the door. 

post #94 of 242

LilyTiger - HOORAY for the break you're getting!  So glad things got better just in time for you.

 

My boobs have been hurting more too (or differently) over the past 24 hrs since I've stopped pumping and have been BF'ing.  Although William is definitely draining the breast well each time (so that they are way softer than they'd get from pumping), they're still very sore when full (or engorged?) every couple of hours.  And I can feel little hard lumps around the sides which hurt now too.  I'm worried that these will become plugged ducts... I was much more thorough w/breast compression and massage when I was pumping, b/c I'd be sitting there for 30-45 mins w/nothing else to do!  I don't feel like I'm evenly massaging/compressing while BF'ing since I'm more concerned w/position and getting Will to stay latched w/o screaming (and we're mostly laying down, so I only have one free hand).

 

Has anyone tried the cabbage leaves in the bra yet?  I cannot remember if they were recommended for just engorgement, or for plugged ducts, but it's worth a try....

post #95 of 242

 She sleeps in the sling on walks, but as soon as the motion stops, she's up again.  It's possible the moby might be better in that sense.

 

 

I used to sit bouncing on the birth ball when my first baby was asleep in the sling...then he thought i was walking when I was really on the computer or whatnot.  Lifesaver!

post #96 of 242
Thread Starter 

I think cabbage leaves are for engorgement but I remember reading somewhere to make sure you are happy with your milk supply before trying.

 

I am not sure what's going on, I am getting the stabbing pains in both sides and one side does seem to have a plugged duct, at least it has a tender area (under the nipple in the tissue outside of the areola) hat seems hard before feedings and less hard afterwards, but still there. I have been massaging it, I expressed a lot of milk in the shower. I am wondering if I need to start wearing a sleep bra instead of free boobing it since they are so large (gotta be F or G, I think at this point) and if that might help with pain, or make it worse?


I am really thinking it's not thrush, I have already started taking probiotics preventatively before the pain started.

 

Also, Lily, I realized I've gotten pretty lazy with Lyle's latch, too. (that is a lot of Ls :)  When he's fussy or I'm tired is the worst. The LC I saw said we had shallow latch issues, but I pretty much ignored her because he was gaining well and I wasn't in any pain. Now I think it's time to work on things. I have a slight "lipstick tubing" of the nipples (the slanted, bad kind) sometimes, so I know it's not always good.

 

Ped appointment was rescheduled to tomorrow, I KNOW he feels way heavier and his clothes are tighter but from that first few weeks I still fear being told he's not gaining enough...

post #97 of 242

Hmmm, I was also considering whether it was time for me to start wearing a bra around the house as well...(I've heard to avoid wire bras or ones that fit too tightly, as they can cause or aggravate plugged ducts).  My boobs are just so sore, all around, all the time!  I've been going braless this whole time, just b/c I can't stand the feeling of extra layers getting in the way, esp when I was spending so much time and effort on BFing/pumping/skin-to-skin and have this rash as well.  I suppose a bra would help w/ my leaking issues, where I can tuck in pads as needed, but then I worry about my boobs sitting around in that moisture....  

 

Boots / Eluethia - how are your plugged duct(s) doing, any better or worse?  Are you doing anything that's providing relief?  I've read recommendations of warm compresses, drinking plenty of water and frequent nursing on that side - that's my regimen for today, as I woke up this morning w/shooting pains starting from my armpit and I definitely have a hard lump on that breast, arghh!!!

 

 

I really hope they clear up for us, plugged ducts are NOT fun (and I'm really not ready to experience mastitis this soon, with everything else I'm juggling) !!!

post #98 of 242
Thread Starter 

I don't leak, ever. Like twice ever. I think that made me think I had supply issues. But I am wearing a bra today and it does seem to help with the random pain. A lot of what I read about plugged ducts emphasized mama resting. I thought that was crazy. I did a lot of massage last night, and then made sure to feed him when he was hungriest from that side, and it seems a lot better/gone, but it also felt better before he even fed, just after I got some rest.

Now of course the other side is feeling a little lumpy because I got engorged because he refused to feed on that side (unfavorite boobie, which I usually offer first which cuts the fussing, but the plugged duct was in favorite boobie which has a higher supply) I can't win. but it does seem fixable.

 

Dr. Sears (friends of crazy googling moms everywhere) has some interesting ideas about plugged ducts and positioning baby on the breast:

http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/breastfeeding/common-problems/plugged-milk-ducts

 

BTW I am CRAZY with the worry about gaining, Lyle has gained THREE pounds since his last pediatrician appointment (like two weeks ago?), from 8.12 to 11.12.

post #99 of 242

I don't leak ever either, Boots.  It's kind of weird because I have a hard time even hand expressing milk.  It only works right after she's eaten. 

 

The rash on my breasts seems to be an infection from her scratching me.  So now I have to put antibiotic cream on my boobs but wipe the nipples off before she eats, which is a huge PITA.  I'm all greasy all the time now and she has to wear little mittens so she doesn't spread the infection (and/or put her fingers in her mouth after touching the cream).  I'm really hoping this clears up in the next few days. 

 

In other news, I think I screwed up my supply temporarily by not drinking enough water today.  We went for a morning walk and I didn't really drink much water beforehand and I was sweating while we were out and the rest of the morning she was super fussy and cluster-feeding.  My boobs seemed totally empty but she kept insisting on trying.  I went ahead and drank like a gallon of water, which seemed to help by evening.  I'm not sure it was an under-supply issue though, since she was spitting up a lot of what went in, which seems like she's almost getting too much.  I don't know!  I can't read these crazy signals. 

 

She has had green poops quite a lot lately, which worries me a little.  My doc said not to worry about it unless it's accompanied by fussiness or colic-y symptoms, but she's always sort of fussy at certain times of day, so I can't really tell when to worry or not.  She's gaining fine though.

 

Boots, why are you worried about Lyle's gain?  My understanding is that, particularly for breastfed babies, they can't gain too much.  Sounds like he's doing awesome!

 

(Sorry if this post is random stream of consciousness.... I'm trying to finish it before she has a meltdown on DH)

post #100 of 242

boots - That is a HUGE weight gain! Awesome! My daughter gained two pounds in a little less than two weeks - she also grew over an inch. The growth is crazy!

 

Breastfed babies usually gain a lot right away, but then don't gain as much after that. I saw a chart somewhere that showed the difference between weight gain in a breastfed and formula-fed baby. I just remember a big leap in the beginning for bf babes. 

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