I'm so glad you have gotten some help here and have gotten a plan together that feels right.
I could have written your original post about 9 months ago, in fact if you hadn't mentioned having a three year old also I would have done a double take. :LOL My rage and grief over having to supplement were boundless. I have felt nothing like it, though the intensity of the rage/grief of infertility were similar, nothing matches the feeling of not being able to sustain your own children. I found that my LLL leader application process helped me get a lot of that out of my system, my application is correspondingly l-o-n-g.
I would wholeheartedly second getting your hands on any information from Dr. Jack Newman that you can. He was a sane voice in a world of nonsense advice for me. His book is awesome, buy it directly from amazon.ca (not .com). His pages of information on www.breastfeedingonline
are unparalleled. His personal replies at firstname.lastname@example.org
are helpful, timely, and down to earth. He doesn't mince words but gives the real scoop.
Here's what I found after many months of research, lots of desperate weeping, and profound rage:
1. Oatmeal did absolutely nothing. I ate pailfuls. I hate it and I still did it. Nothing.
2. Fenugreek is not for anyone with blood sugar or blood pressure issues. Be cautious.
3. Domperidone is illegal in the U.S. as of February 2005. This is an outrage, and I wholeheartedly support any mom who chooses to purchase it and use it. Again, see Dr. Newman for info.
4. More on domperidone. It is unlikely to do much at this point. I was at the same supplementation level as you at the same age as your little ones when I wrote Dr. Newman. There was not much hope for real substantive change in my supply from domperidone at that point. Write him to get the latest, however.
5. Rest: Ha!!!!!!! Although the pps advice about giving yourself 24 hours off if needed sounds GREAT! Wish I had heard that one, wow!
6. Solids: oatmeal, rice cereal, etc: not enough calories. Try mashed bananas, mashed avocados, mashed sweet potatoes. Mix with some of the dratted formula to soften. If they don't push it back out they are probably OK to continue. Remember that breastmilk and formula have more calories per ounce than most solids, so add high calorie foods first, and mix with formula. This will lessen somewhat the amount of formula you have to put in the supplementers.
7. If the supplementers work for you, keep it up! That's a great solution for those it works for, keep it in the act!
8. Angry DH: he'll get over it. Mine did. Truly.
Now a voice from the other side. Alicia dropped her final supplement bottle at 9 months, Annika at 10 months. The girls are now 22 months and still nursing with dedication and devotion - frequently not to say incessantly. I got through my LLL application process!! There has not been a bottle in the house in 9 months. I have forgotten the horror, though the rage and pain do return occasionally in memory they are just that - a memory.
You can do it! You can hold on, you can stick it out, you can beat the formula! Breastfeeding will win, it really will! You're doing much better than you know and you will reap such great rewards as time goes on. Hang in there mama!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!