Babywearing for the outrageously well-endowed - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 06:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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OK, I want to practice attachment parenting, but my breasts are huge. I expect they will even grow a bit more when baby comes and my milk comes in. I'm not sure how this is supposed to work... I can't move my arms in front of me even when I'm not wearing a baby, unless I have my elbows way out to the side like chicken-wings. But babies can't be worn on the back until their necks can support their heads, right? And wearing on the back isn't as good for their mental stimulation, right?
Are there any front carriers out there that are somehow better for this? Or am I going to be a baby-bucket kind of mom for lack of other options? All the carriers I've seen are pretty much unisex and designed for baby to lay against a flat chest, but my chest is anything but flat. I'm hopeful someone out there with personal experience can chime in with a brand or style that works well.
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#2 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 06:39 PM
 
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No help, but eagerly awaiting some answers/advice as I'm also a member of the ridiculously well-endowed club (custom bras are a PITA).

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#3 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 06:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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(custom bras are a PITA).
They really are. I wonder if I'm going to have to get tailored baby slings, too. And I'm not even sure how that would work... sling the baby against my belly, *under* my breasts? The logistics are boggling me.
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#4 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 06:51 PM
 
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How big are we talking? I am around a 40 J by the time my milk comes in. I still was able to use a Ring Sling with DD. I just snuggled her up to my breast and tightened it up. I also didn't wear super supportive bras so they kind of... umm.. hung down. Then I would wedge DD between them or on them. Worked for us. I plan on getting a moby this time. I don't see my chest getting into the way with that either... if need be, baby will ride on top of the breasts!

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#5 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 06:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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How big are we talking? I am around a 40 J by the time my milk comes in. I still was able to use a Ring Sling with DD. I just snuggled her up to my breast and tightened it up. I also didn't wear super supportive bras so they kind of... umm.. hung down. Then I would wedge DD between them or on them. Worked for us. I plan on getting a moby this time. I don't see my chest getting into the way with that either... if need be, baby will ride on top of the breasts!
I was a 40J when I got pregnant and I'm way spilling over the top now at the beginning of second trimester. Doesn't it hurt to have the baby's weight on your breasts?
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#6 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 07:04 PM
 
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I am def not in the same position as you, but I think that you could probably make most kinds of carriers work. It might take some tweaking or a consultation with some more experienced BWers in person, though. Is there a local group you can meet up with? You can always practice positioning sort of in a general way with a doll or toy, just to get some idea of the logistics before your LO arrives.

One way I think it is helpful to think about it is to ask: how would you hold the baby safely and comfortably without a carrier...and then figure out based on that what carriers and positions would work. The carrier supports what you want to do; it shouldn't restrict your options!

There's also a whole hive of mamas at thebabywearer.com who may have more detailed suggestions... They are great at helping, especially if you can post pics.

HTH... congrats!!
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#7 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 07:17 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Heinleinesque View Post
OK, I want to practice attachment parenting, but my breasts are huge. I expect they will even grow a bit more when baby comes and my milk comes in. I'm not sure how this is supposed to work... I can't move my arms in front of me even when I'm not wearing a baby, unless I have my elbows way out to the side like chicken-wings. But babies can't be worn on the back until their necks can support their heads, right? And wearing on the back isn't as good for their mental stimulation, right?
Are there any front carriers out there that are somehow better for this? Or am I going to be a baby-bucket kind of mom for lack of other options? All the carriers I've seen are pretty much unisex and designed for baby to lay against a flat chest, but my chest is anything but flat. I'm hopeful someone out there with personal experience can chime in with a brand or style that works well.
I'm well endowed with milk in and was unable to find a nursing bra due to my size. I'm wearing some old sport bras I had ordered online for those who are "blessed uptop" and they work fine. I find the moby wrap works ok for me. I'm scared to attempt to nurse with it on and baby attached, but I guess I just need practice (baby girl is only 7 weeks) I've also been told a MT and ring sling would work well for me as well. I have a ring sling, but I'm not comfortable using it yet, but it seems the girls don't get in the way too much.
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#8 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 08:01 PM
 
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I'm not as big, (G, not J) so YMMV but I've had no trouble using a ring sling or mei Tai. Just make sure whatever you get is long enough (you may need to get a large sling; I have a couple of too-small pouch style slings that don't work because they aren't big enough around). The babies enjoy the extra cushions to lay their heads on (but with a newborn, they're actually more like *between* the pillows.)
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#9 of 17 Old 04-06-2010, 08:24 PM
 
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I was a 40J when I got pregnant and I'm way spilling over the top now at the beginning of second trimester. Doesn't it hurt to have the baby's weight on your breasts?
Not if I'm not engorged. That really don't happen much once your milk is regulated and baby is nested on or in between them. Mine always did a lot of snacking while being worn on my chest. Also remember, I am not carrying a 20lb there! When they got to heavy to be there, I would kinda shift them to the left or right of my breast.. there legs kinda under it, belly curving up the side of the breast and head resting on side/top of breast and shoulder... I hope that makes sense.

A wife to A, unschoolen mom to C (7), T (3) & little A (9 months).
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#10 of 17 Old 04-07-2010, 01:07 AM
 
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I used a ring sling with great success during the first few months. I also had a stretchy wrap (but really he was getting too big for it by the time I got it). I made both & so made them longer to accomodate my size. I really didn't have any difficulties babywearing with my breasts (I'm a G) but when I see other women I realize that I did carry him a bit differently & had one person tell me I was doing it "wrong". But we were comfortable & happy so I call the right!

In particular with the sling I wore him lower in a cradle carry otherwise he would have been on top of my boobs which would not have been very comfortable. I found it comfy, it never bothered my back & I could see him & feel him breathing.

Surviving sleep deprivation one day at a time with dd (Oct '11) & ds (Oct '08).

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#11 of 17 Old 04-07-2010, 02:11 AM
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Actually, my Boobs That Ate New York (as I like to call them ) made BWing NICER at times. A stretchy wrap (gypsy mama) with DD on my front meant she was secure and tight but could totally see and had room to move her head around-- b/c she was up against my boobs, but out a bit from my upper chest/face. A friend commented on it once, how that carry didn't work as well for her b/c her daughter was all smooshed up against her. I liked the way it worked for us!

Fluffiness and big boobs do make it harder to wear certain styles for me. I finally traded for a great ring sling and used that when DD was much bigger, and I love our 4th gen beco, but my boobs do look hilarious with DD on the back and the chest clip and waist clip just surrounding boobage. And I do have to let the straps out plenty for a front carry, vs DH. But I think curves WORK well with wraps... DH didn't wrap as well as I did.
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#12 of 17 Old 04-07-2010, 03:07 PM
 
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I have giant boobs, and it's not really a problem to have my baby in a carrier. I did find that pouches didn't work as well (but I didn't care much for pouches for other reasons, too.)

In a front carry, if you're carrying him/her upright, your baby pretty much hangs out right between the boobs. I did find reclining carries awkward (but that was also because my baby hated them.)

And I am always super suspicious of the whole "back carries or front carries facing out are bad for babies, baaaaaad" thing - I did some poking around, and most (all?) of that seems to originate with a single German social scientist's opinion on the subject. Not research-based as far as I could discover.

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#13 of 17 Old 04-07-2010, 09:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Heinleinesque View Post
I was a 40J when I got pregnant and I'm way spilling over the top now at the beginning of second trimester. Doesn't it hurt to have the baby's weight on your breasts?
Only if you're engorged. In fact resting her on top of my boobs felt very natural and I kinda wonder how mamas without big boobs wear and if it's uncomfortable to have the baby resting against your chest with so little padding .

I was in the neighborhood of a 38J after my milk came in. Like a pp, I found less supportive bras more comfy so my boobs hung kinda low. My favorite carries were tummy to tummy carries which I did with wraps, ring slings and pouches. I never figured cradle carries out and think the big boobs may have been a factor in that.

Kristy, wife to Josh proud mama to Katie: since 3/08 and Emma since 8/12.

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#14 of 17 Old 04-08-2010, 10:05 AM
 
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Regardless of breast size (I'm at a G/H right now) you're going to hold and carry your baby, with or without a sling. A pp said it exactly -- see how you will carry your baby in arms, then mimic it with a carrier.

Some mamas have mentioned carrying a baby under the breasts -- please, please don't! Nearly every story of a baby tragedy that has occurred in a carrier happened when a mother couldn't see her baby's face.

Baby's weight does not add much, even to engorged breasts with mastitis, when baby is new. (3 kids and more mastitis than anyone I've ever, ever met.) Typically I nestle baby's body sort of into my cleavage, and his/her head rests up at my collarbone. Then I use a ring-sling or wrap to hold him/her there.

Nursing hands-free is an advanced carrying technique, and with large breasts, even more so. And, again, it is imperative that you can see baby's face when you are nursing. Tragedies in carriers are extremely rare -- much rarer than in other baby devices, from what I can read even in the CPSC's incident reports -- but they usually occur when baby's face is obscured from mother's view.
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#15 of 17 Old 04-08-2010, 02:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all for your input. It looks like I have a lot of shopping in my future.
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#16 of 17 Old 04-14-2010, 09:50 PM
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when DD was smaller, i wore her in a Moby wrap, which fits anybody. super comfy! when she was just a bit older i tried a ring sling, which wasn't as comfortable but it would do fine if i had a better one. my biggest complaint there was that my shoulders would get really sore - my upper back and shoulder muscles had to work extra hard to hold a baby's weight as well as my breast weight (36K at the time). normally i assume this isn't a problem, it's just one of those big boob problems. if the ring sling was padded it would probably have been more comfortable, but the weight/centre of gravity would still be an issue. it wouldn't have hurt as much if i could carry her at my waist, but then she'd be under my breasts and breathing would be an issue. not an acceptable solution.

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#17 of 17 Old 04-14-2010, 10:59 PM
 
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Well, I tend to be a G/H, but both of my babes loved being upright in the Maya Wrap since birth - I never could master the laying-down positions, and I couldn't figure out how in the world people nurse wearing their babies - I always felt that they would suffocate, or that mine breasts were hanging too low. But my kiddos were quite happy with the "extra" padding to lay their heads on.

I will say that I made an unpadded mei tai with really wide straps, and although it is really comfortable, when I have a child on my back, with the straps across my chest, I make a point of NOT going out in public!
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