I've thought about it (adoptive nursing) a lot, and I think the hardest thing for me right now is the night time situation. Since we are a co-sleeping family, dd wakes relatively frequently...but since I have to use the lact-aid, night nursing is really a challenge. I can't just roll over, latch her on, and go back to sleep. She's a VERY slow nurser too...nighttime nursings often last 40 minutes. As it is, I am relying on my dh to help me by giving some bottles at night. I just can't deal with it. Right now she is waking 3-4 times a night (she's had an ear infection, but it's clearing up and now she's still waking). I think if I was getting a good night's sleep, the idea of nursing my next child wouldn't seem so overwhelming! I don't see dd sleeping all night happening anytime soon. Ds didn't until age 4. I am really close to just doing all bottles at night. I finally have gotten to where we can at least stay in bed, but side-lying nursing just doesn't work.
In general, though, adoptive nursing is going well. It's never "easy", but right now it is very manageable. I have a pretty good routine for cleaning the lact-aids, dd isn't nursing quite so often or for quite so long (part of why she is so hungry at night), etc. When I get nervous about the next child, it's mostly about getting through the first 4-6 months. Especially because at the beginning of bf'ing, I have to be such a stickler about things like no bottles, nursing round the clock, etc. (for milk supply). I know that adoptive nursing is not necessary, per se. I ended up bottlefeeding ds after about 5 months of trying to induce lactation, and ds ended up very well bonded and we have a great, close relationship. But I do enjoy nursing, though it hasn't been quite the profound experience I envisioned.. With dd right now, we finally have things under control, and even on the hard days I know that we've invested too much to quit. Now that I"ve made it this far, I know I can go the distance with her. I know we would get to that point with a subsequent baby too, it's just that the "getting to that point" part is such a challenge. I think if I didn't nurse my next baby, I'd regret it. I'd always wonder "what if". I keep thinking that the next baby won't have the exact same challenges as dd. DD doesn't have a very strong suck, hence the extremely long nursing sessions and my lack of milk production. Chances are my next baby would be different.
Anyway, I think I just need to be getting a little more sleep at night and to be a little bit distanced from dd's young infancy, and I will feel rejuvenated about the idea of nursing the next one.
I have used a hospital grade pump, two different kinds actually. Those are the pumps with which I produced the 1/8 oz of milk. When I tried the PIS, I didn't get anything...it doesn't have enough suction. Pumping is not a practical option. I wasted several hundred dollars renting a pump for two months and only used it twice. I think pumping would help my milk production, but I just don't have time to use it...again because dd is such a slow eater and eats so often, and because my ds is already pining for time with me. I"m already taking a lot of herbs. The only thing I might do next time is look into the medical protocol with bcp's and domperidone, although all those make me nervous too. I had a friend who donated milk for me a few months ago, and dd wouldn't drink it. It was so sad! She was used to the taste of formula at that point and wouldn't drink the bmilk, even when it was mixed with formula. (So obviously I"m not making enough milk for her to even taste.)
I think that using a wetnurse probably wouldn't be a good idea for an adopted baby, where feeding is so tied in with attachment and bonding. I supposed an occasional wetnurse wouldn't be a big deal, but it would have to be very occasional.
RasJane, dd is OK with cold lact-aids. I"m the one who doesn't like them. That's a great idea about using the burp rag underneath. We have started using it cold at night so I can stay in bed.
Canadiannancy, I say big kudos to anybody who EP's! I think it would be very hard! I found out that a woman I VT EP'd. I was really surprised. It was her first baby, a girl, and she had looked so forward to that close bond with her dd. But with ep'ing, it ended up that her dh became the primary "feeder" while she pumped, and she talked about how much it hurt to see her dd prefer her dh. I think her baby was about 9 months old when she stopped ep'ing, and she says it was one of the happiest days of her life because it was so stressful (she was working full-time too). I found that I couldn't do anything else when I was pumping. I needed both hands to help the pump cups stay on.