So uh, tandeming... how do you do it? - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-22-2008, 01:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm gonna be nursing a 4.5 year old and a newborn, like um... soon! I'm due in less than 6 weeks, holy crap, and it just occurred to me that although I am going to tandem, I dont really know *how* to tandem.

Do you nurse the newborn first, then the older child? Pop one on one boob and one on the other? How often do you switch them? Do you have to limit how much the older child nurses? Any tips and tricks I dont know about? Or super obvious things I should know about but probably dont? I'm clueless over here.

Halp!
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Old 03-22-2008, 08:04 PM
 
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I know this hasn't been up that long, but you might find more help in extended breastfeeding forum. Maybe cross-post it?
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Old 03-22-2008, 08:13 PM
 
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I tandem my 21-month-old and 3-year-old -- my oldest was 19 months when ds was born. reaching back into the mists of memory ....

Except for a few times when I was engorged or had a plug, and needed an "expert nurser" to help me out (and it was soooo nice to have that option!), I always nursed the baby first so that he got all the nutrition he needed before my older child -- who was both nursing and eating solids, so was less dependent on the milk -- got her turn.

I tend toward oversupply, so I nursed the baby fully on one side, then if dd wanted a turn, she would nurse on the same side. The next time I would nurse the baby on the other side fully, and then dd. I know some mothers assign sides to each child, but I had a practical reason and a vanity reason for not doing so. From experience, my breasts don't adjust to having two different nursing patterns very well, so doing a lot of nursing on one side and less on the other makes me prone to plugged ducts, leaking, and discomfort. Also, you tend to end up with breasts that are noticeably different sizes. (Your mileage may vary, of course.)

I prepped dd for sharing the milk by really talking it up ahead of time. We talked about -- and practiced -- taking turns with toys, books, etc., with her friends and talked about how she was going to get to share the boobs with her new brother. In return, her brother was going to tell mama's body to make yummy newborn milk for both of them and he would share it with her. She really grokked that and it worked out well (with the expected period of adjustment, of course).

Now that they're older, I don't worry so much about ds going first, I just make sure we switch sides on a fairly regular basis to keep my supply steady.
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Old 03-27-2008, 02:49 AM
 
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Adventures in Tandem Nursing by Hilary Flower is great
happy nursing!
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Old 03-27-2008, 03:29 AM
 
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mine ate at the same time a lot when the little one was smaller, now unless trying to go to sleep they arent both attached at the same time much.
the little one (almost 9mo) likes foremilk best and the big one (almost 37 mo) likes hind milk best so that works best for us (except where i thought i would have problems with the big one getting angry and throwing fits of jealousy...umm..not.
its my little one who gets mad and huffs and yells at the big one for taking his milk! :
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Old 03-30-2008, 07:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the info mamas! So in early days, it's best to let the baby nurse first? Can I nurse DD on the other side at the same time? Or babe first, then DD?

This is gonna be weird... DD has nursed regularly and enthusiastically thru my entire pregnancy, she is used to just switching sides whenever she wants (which is a lot), etc. Gonna be a whole new thing I think with a baby. Of course I will have a lot more milk than she has seen in years so that might make the transition easier for her.

I'd love to hear more stories about how you figured out tandeming!
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Old 03-30-2008, 10:35 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thismama View Post
Thanks for the info mamas! So in early days, it's best to let the baby nurse first? Can I nurse DD on the other side at the same time? Or babe first, then DD?

This is gonna be weird... DD has nursed regularly and enthusiastically thru my entire pregnancy, she is used to just switching sides whenever she wants (which is a lot), etc. Gonna be a whole new thing I think with a baby. Of course I will have a lot more milk than she has seen in years so that might make the transition easier for her.

I'd love to hear more stories about how you figured out tandeming!
i've done all the above, but now since my boys are 27 and 2 months, i'll usually put the younger on his boob first and then after a minute or 2, let the other go to town on his boob. what helped me was to assign each of them their own boob so that way i wouldn't worry that the older one was taking all the milk. my oldest will get his brothers boob for a bit but only if i feel a blocked duct coming on--that strong toddler suck sure comes in handy!! i do limit my oldest with nursing--i don't want him nursing every single time his brother does.

Michelle , wife to Ray, mama to Anthony(12/20/05), Bryant(01/08), Carisma (08/21/10) , step ma to Amber(12/13/94), : :
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Old 03-30-2008, 10:46 AM
 
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I assigned each a side because I worried about viruses dd brought home from preschool on the nipple and ds catching stuff. (He was hospitalized at 9 days old for a mystery virus; and I got paranoid about it.) It really seems to have helped dd with jealousy though. She can nurse mostly when she wants to and she doesn't worry ds will drink all the milk, something she complained about in the early days of nursing. I haven't had any trouble with lopsidedness or anything and we're 5 1/2 months in now, but dd would probably nurse as often as the baby if allowed. When dd's side gets overly full and she's away at school or a playdate, which happens maybe 1-2 times a week, it makes a good opportunity to pump. The Adventures in tandem nursing book was very useful!

Happy with my DH, 2 kids, dog, fish, and frogs
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