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Breastfeeding advice

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hi ladies! Let me give you a little history first. My first baby I wanted to breastfeed SO badly. I didn't buy a pump or bottles, it just never even occured to me. After I had her, I didn't see a lactation consultant 2 days, and didn't realize she wasn't latched on. I also have inverted nipples. Even then, she never fully latched, and I left the hospital the next morning. That night, we ended up taking her to the ER b/c she was severly dehydrated, and it turned out she hadn't eaten at all. The ER doc put her on supplemental formula. A few weeks after that, I contacted LLL, b/c my milk supply was quickly deminishing and she still wouldn't nurse. I tried pumping, feeding her with a spoon versus the bottle, everything they told me. Nothing worked, and she never nursed. The support from the breastfeeding community in general, and the local LLL was less than stellar, and I already was suffering from PPD. In my state, I decided that Katie was rejecting me personally, and it was really interferring with our bonding. After three months, DH put his foot down and we went to bottle exclusivelly.

The whole process was so traumatic, that I couldn't go through it again with DS, 18 months later. I didn't even try, and I regret that now, but at the time, it was the only thing we could think of to avoid the emotional problems we had before.

With our baby, now 10 months, I was on too many meds to nurse, it wasn't an option, and could've killed him.

Now we're trying for #4, and, again, I want more than anything to breastfeed my baby. But I'm at a total loss. I really don't know where to turn. I know I won't be able to handle the criticism and judging I got from the local LLL again (the general consensus was that I wasn't trying hard enough, OBVIOUSLY they had never walked a mile in my shoes!!), and I'm really usually very uncomfortable in natural or AP circles, because while I do many things, like baby wear and cosleep, in some things, I'm very different. And bringing out a bottle usually gets more looks, glares, and nasty comments than I can handle. So, God bless the internet!!

What can I do now to help me breastfeed my baby? I hear there are sheilds I can wear during pregnancy (I could be preg now), but I can't seem to find them. What about diet? Herbs? My midwives are very supportive of me, and know the history, and are committed to helping me when the time comes, but I'm still wondering if there are things I can do now to help me later. Any advice!

post #2 of 6
I'm sorry you didn't get the help you needed from your LLL group. Is there another one in your area that you could go to?

Here's some info on flat / inverted nipples to read before your birth.


Can you meet with the hospital LC before your birth?
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much!! I'm having a homebirth for our next one, but my midwives are definately onboard helping me, it's something we've discussed already. Thanks for the link!!
post #4 of 6

I'm so sorry you didn't get the help you needed. I don't know anything about the flat/inverted nipples, so no advice there, but one thing you can do now to help your bf relationship later is to get you dh prepared. It may be very challenging again (hopefully NOT, but there's that chance) and a supportive husband goes a LOOOONNNNGGG way. IMO if he "put his foot down" on you giving up, that's not being supportive. You were the one doing all the work, and as long as you felt up to it, he should have been there all along cheering you on. Try to help him understand how important this is to you and make sure he'll stand by you no matter what. My dd2 is 9 months old and 100% tube fed, so I've been pumping milk for her literally since she was 3 days old. My dh is such a HUGE encouragement for me. He brags to everyone who asks about Faris how I've been pumping this whole time and tells me constantly how proud he is of me. I can't tell you enough how much this helps me keep going day after day. It's exactly what I need to hear to help me fulfill my goal of providing her breastmilk for a year.

I really hope you have a beautiful breastfeeding relationship with #4 and it be a healing experience for you.
post #5 of 6
I never even got the LLL here to call me back. And I called both leaders multiple times, so I hear you. I have flat nipples and had lots of issues at first. DH wanted me to stop, but I was just wouldn't quit for some reason and he supported me since it meant so much to me.

I strongly encourage you to find a private LC (IBCLC) BEFORE babe is born that will work with you on everything and that will come to you to get babe latched on early. Here is how to find one near you.

I nursed with nipple shields for the first several weeks until DD was able to latch onto my nipples without help. They were a godsend for us. Lots of breastfeeding purists (for lack of a better term) are anti-NS, but we would never have made it without them.

ETA - I saw lots of nurses who were supposedly trained in bfing in the hospital. They sucked and were completely useless in helping us get nursing. I didn't see the hospital LC until the day we were discharged and they had already started DD on formula supplements. Seriously - find your OWN LC who will be there for you.

I found it easier once I just accepted that it was going to be hard for us and let go of wanting it to be "normal", too. Sounds strange, maybe, but it really did help me process how much work it was for us to get through it. At 5 months and with me back at work full time, we're still exclusively breastfeeding and it's going great!
post #6 of 6
You might ask your midwives about this device:


The Philips Avent Niplette is a non-invasive device that is clinically proven to permanently correct flat and inverted nipples without effecting lactation. After using the Niplette, mothers are able to breastfeed comfortably and successfully.
LLL also sells a product called Evert-it

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