Is it supposed to be this hard? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 45 Old 12-14-2008, 03:48 PM - Thread Starter
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My sister is 4 an she goes to school. i can't imagine her being breastfed!
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#32 of 45 Old 12-14-2008, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by rudysmummy View Post
My sister is 4 an she goes to school. i can't imagine her being breastfed!
That's just because we grew up in a society where we never see it. Even on TV and in movies it is always bottle feeding. Think of the soaps - when did someone last breastfeed even their itty bitty baby on TV, let alone their 4 year old before they go off to school in the morning? But in many families in many places in the world this is totally normal. These kids grow up to be normal adults.

Breastmilk is full of antibodies that help kids avoid getting sick. And many kinds of sick too - not only does breastfeeding reduce the chance of babies getting lung infections like pneumonia, and gut infections like diarrhoea, but it also reduces a child's chance of getting leukemia or juvenile diabetes (the one you need the needles of insulin for.) This doesn't change once a baby is 6 weeks or 3 years.

Plus, many moms who breastfeed find that their kids are independent and ready to 'take on the world' because they are so secure. The combination security, food, warmth and love that breastfeeding provides means that kids are less anxious as they grow into adulthood.

The more I think about it the more I can't understand how we moved away from nursing our little ones as long as the needed.

ps How are things going with you and your little one?
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#33 of 45 Old 12-14-2008, 06:04 PM
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I remember thinking that women should only breastfeed for a year. Now my goal is 2 or 3 years (maybe longer). I want to be able to nurse her through any early childhood illnesses and not to mention it prevents breast cancer in the mom and even the child later in life.

Here is a 1 min commercial that inspired me to breastfeed into toddlerhood. I still get a tear when i see it.

I hope its getting better for you.

Mama to L (7) and A (born 7/15 by VBAC)
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#34 of 45 Old 12-14-2008, 06:33 PM
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Hi there,

Not everyone breastfeeds for 4+ years. I breastfed my son until he was 2 and I feel good about it. If you can breastfeed at all you are giving your baby many benefits. If you can breastfeed for at least a year that is great. You may find at that point that you and your baby are not ready to stop. Also, breastfeeding a toddler is NOTHING like breastfeeding an infant. They eat food and so the nursing is much less frequent, just a private, cozy thing between the two of you (and nobody else's business either!). But if you are so overwhelmed now that 4 more WEEKS sounds like too much, please do not feel deterred because some people choose to continue a breastfeeding relationship into childhood.

It sounds to me like your really need some support in real life. Do you have access to a lactation specialist? Some babies and moms really DO need help to get things going right, and if you are feeling unsure or uncomfortable, then trust your instincts and get help from a knowledgeable, pro-breastfeeding caregiver. Even support from other moms who are breastfeeding or who have breastfed in the past might help (at least help you know what is normal and not!). It is hard at first, but it shouldn't be overwhelming or unbearable. And it should be getting easier, not harder.

Maybe you also need other help in general right now, if its not really the breastfeeding but the whole situation that is overwheleming. Do you have any friends or relatives who can just come baby *you* a little bit? Cook you dinner, hold baby while you have a bath, bring over a movie to watch together, do your laundry, just stuff like that? Its really hard to adjust to life with a baby, to your new life as a mom and I really appreciated all the help I could get.

Unfortunately I have heard from younger mom friends that people do often discourage them from breastfeeding. I think these people must have their own (negative) stereotypes about what you can handle. This is silly and its sad because you may not get offered the support you need! If you are interacting with nurses, midwives, doctors like this be really clear with them that you DO want to breastfeed exclusively, and that you need them to support that. Maybe they (incorrectly) assume you've already decided otherwise.

Breastfeeding, once established, is easy, cheap, convenient, and healthiest for you and baby. When your baby is a little older you can pump milk and leave it in bottles (but yes, I'd wait until things are going well first). After a few weeks the baby should begin to wait 1-2 hours between nursing and that time will increase over the next few weeks. You can also try letting your baby suck your finger if it seems really "sucky" (put it in the baby's mouth, fingernail pointing down towards tongue).

dissertating mom to three

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#35 of 45 Old 12-14-2008, 11:15 PM
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Hang in there! just take it day by day second by second. Every feed that your baby gets from the breast is a bonus, and before long you will be a pro. The first few weeks are hard, even when there are no issues with breastfeeding, throw in a couple of problems and it becomes pretty daunting. Bottles or dummies will just increase the number of problems, and can lead to some serious ones. My little one is 6 months and i love our nursing relationship now, it is so natural and fun and amazing, there is nothing like waking up in the morning to big smiles and her trying to get to breakfast

Dont stress too much about your baby getting enough, so long as they are weeing and pooping thenm you are fine, i know it is hard when all they seem to do it eat but really its ok and normal, and really good for baby and your supply. By 6 weeks you will begin to see huge changes! it will start to seem a lot less daunting and begin to be fun, by 3 months you will be confident and thinking how easy it is! by 6 months you will be loving every second! it is so awesome now.

Just dont give yourself an option, pretend there is no other food for your baby, anything else is substandard. We may be told that "breast is best" but really its just the norm, anything else is below standard. I plan to breastfeed my little one until she is at least 2, its normal and healthy.
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#36 of 45 Old 12-14-2008, 11:27 PM
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Originally Posted by rudysmummy View Post
My sister is 4 an she goes to school. i can't imagine her being breastfed!
It's hard to imagine if you've never been exposed to natural age weaning and haven't nursed much yet yourself! Believe me, when I was where you are, struggling SO HARD in those early weeks, I had NO IDEA that I'd still be nursing my 3 year old. You could have knocked me over with a feather if you'd said it then.
Which is why, for now, take it day by day. Tell yourself you can get through today and tomorrow.

DS 12/22/05 and DD 5/24/09
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#37 of 45 Old 12-15-2008, 12:19 AM
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It was VERY hard for me the first couple of months, and even if you have the best support system, it can still feel lonely. Stick with it, you're doing great. The pain and soreness WILL go away. And come here often. This place & my husband saved my breastfeeding relationship. When ds was 3-4 weeks old, I couldn't imagine nursing him for one more feeding. He is almost 8 months old and we are still going strong. It is tiresome, but it is one of the best things you will ever do for your little baby. Keep it up mama!! Please feel free to pm me if you ever need anything.

I'm Aicha . In love with my DH, and my Adam (4/23/08) . boobie monster.
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#38 of 45 Old 12-15-2008, 01:31 AM
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The first few weeks for me were brutal. I was tired and cranky and cried through every night feeding. It got so much easier once we mastered side lying nursing so I could get some sleep. It also got tons easier around a month, once we settled into a pattern and her latch was tons better. Hang in there and try and get some hep. You can do this!

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#39 of 45 Old 12-15-2008, 02:07 AM
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Originally Posted by rudysmummy View Post
My nipples are sore and it hurts, and he seems to want to feed constantly?
You can use nipple shields for the soreness

My sis used them recently and loved them. They don't affect your supply or interfere really, just provide relief until you heal. You can also use lanolin, it's heavenly.

Keep going! Like a PP said, BFing is harder in the beginning but then waaaay easier than FF. You'll never have to stumble to the kitchen at 3 am, find a bottle, measure and mix formula, heat it, then feed a fully awakened screaming baby EVER with BFing- just pull up your PJs and let baby latch and go back to sleep!

Momma to DD (12/04) hearts.gif and DS (11/09) hbac.gif.
I survived 16 mos! Ask me about breastfeeding a baby with posterior tongue tie, high palate, and weak oral motor skills- whew!

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#40 of 45 Old 12-15-2008, 02:21 AM
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Right now, don't think about years. Don't even think about weeks, just think about getting through the next feeding.

When your baby is nursing, does it hurt the whole time, or just at the beginning when he's latching on? If the pain gets worse during the feed, then this is a latch issue. Check out They have videos of what a proper latch looks like and how to get one. If you have access to a lactation consultant, it would be a good idea to see one.

Is your baby gaining weight? Does he seem to be growing and filling out his clothes more? Does he have lots of wet and poopy diapers?

When your baby is older, you can absolutely leave him with someone else and go out while breastfeeding. You can either time it so that you nurse him right before you leave and you'll have a good 2-3 hour chunk of time to go out before he needs you again. Or, you can leave a bottle of expressed milk for him. The Avent Isis is a great manual pump for occasional use.

Right now, though, he just really needs his Mum. Whether nursing or bottle feeding, 2 week old babies need their Mums. For the first 4ish weeks, it will seem like he always wants to nurse all the time. This is normal. Growth spurts usually happen at 1 week, 3 weeks and 6 weeks, but they can happen at pretty much any time. You know they're having one because they just want to nurse non stop. If you let them, it will last less than 48 hours and they'll start spacing out feeds again.

You CAN do this! You ARE doing it! Congratulations on your baby boy and on choosing to give him the very best you can as his mother. It sounds like you're doing just great! You're inthe trenches now, but it will get better.

Please don't use nipple sheilds or bottles right now unless a LC advises you to. You don't need them. Get yourself a tube of Lansinoh or PurLan lanolin and apply it to your nipples after every feed. This is very soothing and keeps your nipples from drying and cracking.

Mama to Thing 1 and Thing 2.
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#41 of 45 Old 12-15-2008, 09:59 PM
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Contact your local La leche League, you should be able to find mums there who breastfeed, and can support you. You could also try posting in the UK area of Find Your Tribe, to see if there are any mums near where you are, who you perhaps could call and talk to in real life?

Right now, don't think about nursing for years, just take it one feed at a time. I was determined to breastfeed, but in the early days, all I could cope with was the here and now. Do your best to muddle through now, and aim for at least 6 weeks (40 days) "trial period". When you get there, 3 months may be a good next goal, then 6 months... and after that I really stopped worrying at all!

By 6 weeks it should definitely have stopped hurting (unless there's a problem with the latch). By 3 months breastfeeding should be easy (we had to supplement, and it is a pain in the neck!). By 6 months, well I felt like a pro!

Breastfeeding won't stop you from being away from your baby at times (there are a lot of mums here who work and exclusively breastfeed and pump). But I would wait until you've got breastfeeding established before leaving you're LO with someone else to bottlefeed, to prevent nipple confusion. Also, in a while your LO may not feed as often, and you may very well be able to be away for a couple of hours without needing bottles.

Also, remember there are growth spurts (roughly at 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months), when your little one may seem starving for a couple of days and eat all the time - it doesn't mean you don't have enough milk, it is just a request for more milk to be produced by your body!

Good luck!
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#42 of 45 Old 12-16-2008, 01:33 AM
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Just want to check in on you -- how's it going? I was so sorry to read your post: I too was fiercely horribly awfully miserably in pain in the beginning - I actually had to stop nursing on one side for a week, pumping instead, to let the poor nipple heal, and meanwhile, lucky me, I got a severe mastitis on the other side. I would kick and cry every time my son latched on... I really learned then not to judge anyone who chose not to breastfeed. I can barely stand to remember how bad it was, but now 10 months later we are doing great, and I am so proud to have come through all of that. It turns out that my son's temperment really benefits from breastfeeding and close nurturance.So, just wanting to check in and say a stranger is thinking of you and wishing you well. Keep posting if you want more support!

Mom of one child (2008), wife of one husband, tender of dogs, cats and chickens. Household interests: ocean life (kid), bitcoins (husband), simplifying (me).

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#43 of 45 Old 12-16-2008, 09:09 AM
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PMed you!
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#44 of 45 Old 12-28-2008, 01:42 PM
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how are you doing, rudysmummy?
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#45 of 45 Old 01-12-2009, 12:45 AM
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Originally Posted by rudysmummy View Post
This is my first baby so I don't know, but I'm finding breastfeeding really hard. My nipples are sore and it hurts, and he seems to want to feed constantly? How do I know if I'm making enough milk? Should I give him a bottle every now and again to make sure he has enough?

Sorry for all the questions but I don't really have anyone to ask irl!!
agreed re: the others who've said to avoid the bottle b/c of bottle/nipple confusion.
if you feed on demand he is AOK.
my baby is feeding every 1-4 hours - often every hour.

she is only 12 days old but i had a similar experience: it was very painful - excruciating - at first.

i pumped for a day to take a break and let my nipples heal.

to avoid the bottle we fed her thru a syringe & thin tube attached to a pinky we let her suck on. pain in butt.

then w/a LC, i discovered medela nipple shields & medela breast shells.

the nipple shield protected & let me breastfeed when they were sore.

the breast shells protect the sore nipples from rubbing on bedsheets, clothes, etc., catch leaks, let air in. i wear them in btw. feedings for protection, either in a bralette or taped to my body w/medical/athletic tape.

btw. these 2 products, i've been able to heal the nipples so i'm now mostly breastfeeding w/o the shields.

maybe they can help you too.

DD 12/08
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