Tandem Nursing Questions - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 11 Old 08-09-2006, 12:11 AM - Thread Starter
 
hananana's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 167
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have a 17 month old DS and 1 month old DD. They are both nursing.
For the most part, it is going well. Both are being fed, but there are a few things happening that I'm not sure about, and maybe you can help.

1 - DS is now nursing almost exclusively. Today actually he ate a bunch of solid food, but for the last few weeks, he has gone back to almost exclusive breastmilk and soft yellow poops 6 times a day (almost). Before DD was born, he had been nursing only at naptime, bedtime, wake-up, and maybe once or twice for 2 or 3 minutes. How long is this going to last?! Is he going to become malnourished? He's fussier than usual, but there are many other things that could possibly be blamed for that (teething, having a new sister, heat, lots of visitors). I'm not sure how to tell if he's getting enough nourishment. And even if I could tell, how do I get him to eat more solids. I really don't want to be nursing them BOTH exclusively for very long!

2 - I seem to have an oversupply problem. I could feed our whole block with the amount of milk it seems I'm making. Besides engorgement, leaking, and plugged ducts, the real problem is that it is so hard on poor little DD. Unless she is very relaxed and almost asleep, she can't handle the let-down. She coughs and gags and can't stay latched on for more than a couple seconds. She has a desire to suckle, so sometimes I use my pinky finger as a substitute, but I would much prefer for her to be able to nurse for comfort. How can I slow the milk down for her, while still making enough milk for both babies? I tried block feeding this afternoon, but I got sorely engorged on the other side. Any ideas?
(Side question - can suckling on Mama's pinky cause nipple confusion?)
hananana is offline  
#2 of 11 Old 08-10-2006, 06:16 PM
 
earthmama369's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 6,989
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Oh wow. Are we long-lost twins? I'm having the same experience with dd (20 months) and ds (7 weeks). DD's nursing more often than DS and I feel like I can't possibly make her (or me) happy right now, she's asking to nurse so often.

Bumping in hopes that more experienced tandem nursers will chime in!
earthmama369 is offline  
#3 of 11 Old 08-10-2006, 09:56 PM
 
Anglyn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: state of confusion
Posts: 2,326
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ok, first get thou to a bookstore or amazon.com or half.com and order a copy of Hillary Flowers "Adventures in Tandem Nursing" indispensable.

Second, when ds2 was born, dd also went back to nursing like a newborn, part of it is they missed the milk while it was gone, part is jealousy of the new baby and a large part is wanting the reassurance of the closeness to mom, that yes, I am still her baby too. It WILL get better.

Third, pay attention. DD was withdrawn and quite and I thought it was adjusting to new baby, come to find out she had a raging yeast infection (Ithought it was diaper rash and the stuff I was usijng didnt work so finally went to the ped.) Its just easy to overlook stuff when overwhelmed with a new baby. Im not saying anything IS wrong, but just because he is adjusting to a new baby doesnt mean something else couldnt be going on, kwim?

Lastly, for engorgment, have you tried pumping? I know pumping can cause you make more, but dont pump a lot, just enough for baby to latch on. I actually had to pump and give ds a bottle of expressed milk as he seemed to prefer it, I had oversupply issues too. As dd slowed down on her nursing, and ds settled into his pattern, that issue did get better. Though when I went back to work, I still pumped about 18 oz. at a time (in about ten minutes). So yeah.

I think that book addresses all of your questions!

~Me, mama to soapbox boy (1991), photo girl (1997), gadget girl (2003), jungle boy (2005), fan boy (2003) and twirly girl (2011). Twenty years of tree hugging, breastfeeding, cosleeping, unschooling, craziness
Anglyn is offline  
#4 of 11 Old 08-11-2006, 03:12 AM
 
eightyferrettoes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 5,804
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Joining the club here. I am due to deliver any day now, and had always comforted myself with the fantasy that DS, 18 months, would wean "sometime" during the pregnancy.

Um, no. He has actually been stepping it up a lot in the last several days, as much as I'll let him, probably trying to compensate for the amount of time we've been apart while I've been in summer school. I can't deal with him nursing as much as he'd like, but I do try to give him a couple times a day to reconnect. And I hear that toddlers get REALLY excited when the milky comes back.

So it looks like I'll be tandeming, willy-nilly. I'm a little worried about how it's all going to play out.

Will I be as sore with a new baby as I was starting off with him?
Will he freak out when he sees the new baby nursing?

Will I ever do ANYTHING but nurse again?

There are a couple of tandem nursers at my LLL... I meant to talk to one of them last week, but somehow time got away from me while I was gossiping about other things. But other than those two women, this is utterly uncharted territory for me; the women in my family and most of my closer friends don't know I'm still nursing DS and would be a little horrified if they did know.
eightyferrettoes is offline  
#5 of 11 Old 08-11-2006, 11:26 AM
 
KittyMommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: A Hawkeye in Badger Land
Posts: 166
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
DS was 22 mo when DD was born and nursed WAY more than she did for quite a while. I wish I could tell you how long, but DD's first year plus is mostly a sleep-deprived, non-stop nursing blur now. I don't think lack of solids will hurt at all. DS was in 90's for both height and weight (%ile) until I got pg and my milk supply lessened (he was eating a lot of solids though). By the time she was born, DS was around 60% for weight and still in the 90's for height. Still healthy and energetic, just relatively skinnier. After my milk came back in, he started evening out again...by his 3 yr check up, he was in the 80's for both. Mama's milk is at least as nutritious as any solids he could eat!

As for huge supply, I would let DS nurse for a couple of minutes and then switch sides so DD could nurse on the first side, when it was a problem. As I recall, things evened out before long (but like I said, it was all kind of a blur!!).

As for the pinkie thing...I used this for both kiddos off and on and they never seemed confused. FWIW...

Jen
KittyMommy is offline  
#6 of 11 Old 08-11-2006, 11:29 AM
 
KittyMommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: A Hawkeye in Badger Land
Posts: 166
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by eightyferrettoes
Will I ever do ANYTHING but nurse again?
Ummm...no. Just kidding! Though it sure feels that way for a while. Both my kids are still nursing at 3.5 yr and 21 months and there are still days that feel like nurse-a-thons. Of course I think those days are days that I'm feeling cranky about nursing, not necessarily days that they are nursing more that usual, kwim?
KittyMommy is offline  
#7 of 11 Old 08-11-2006, 12:16 PM
 
Anglyn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: state of confusion
Posts: 2,326
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
DD dropped down into the 50% when my milk dried up during my last pg. then shot back up into the 90th as soon as the baby was born.

First day home, my sil says to dd, "that babys gonna get your bopbop" and dh and I both nearly leapt out of our chairs and told her to NEVER say that, because we dont want her to hate him!

The first time the baby nursed in front of her, she came and stood in front of me and just dropped her little head down onto her chest and looked so dejected! Then I said, "do you want to bopbop too?" and her head shot up, the light came back into her eyes and she giggled and nodded her head and they tandemed for the first time and it was so sweet!

They now each have thier own side. I dont impose that, THEY do and woe to one who takes the other ones side....

~Me, mama to soapbox boy (1991), photo girl (1997), gadget girl (2003), jungle boy (2005), fan boy (2003) and twirly girl (2011). Twenty years of tree hugging, breastfeeding, cosleeping, unschooling, craziness
Anglyn is offline  
#8 of 11 Old 08-12-2006, 12:07 AM
 
eightyferrettoes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 5,804
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by KittyMommy
Ummm...no. Just kidding! Though it sure feels that way for a while. Both my kids are still nursing at 3.5 yr and 21 months and there are still days that feel like nurse-a-thons. Of course I think those days are days that I'm feeling cranky about nursing, not necessarily days that they are nursing more that usual, kwim?
Yeah, that makes sense. I need to beg/borrow/steal a copy of "Adventures in Tandem Nursing..." I've been in denial about the upcoming situation for long enough now. Might as well get reconciled.
eightyferrettoes is offline  
#9 of 11 Old 08-12-2006, 12:34 AM
 
Dreaming's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Very grateful.
Posts: 3,394
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Let's see. I've been tandem nursing for 6 months now. My kids are 20 months apart.

Most days my 2 year old eats a few bites of solid food and that's it. I keep offering food and drink but she seems to prefer to nurse. If I find anything that she likes (that day ) I fill her up on it.
She's also still waking 2-4 times a night and will only nurse to sleep.
I'm tired.

You may want to put limits on nursing your toddler as things progress. In the beginning, I would nurse them both at the same time. Yes, we never got out of the chair. After awhile I told DD that she needed to wait until I nursed her brother to sleep and then I would nurse her. We also did the "nurse to the count of ten" and other things.
As long as she's in a good mood and not tired (really needing to nurse) she will wait a few minutes if I ask. I also offer food or drink or an activity instead.

Oh and if I'm ever engorged I just have my toddler nurse off that breast first. The thing about milk is that the breast never really empties. There's always something there.
My DD would nurse on both sides and empty both and I used to worry that DS wouldn't get any milk. Well, he's nearly 25 pounds from all the hindmilk.

I never had DD experience pinky/nipple confusion. DS isn't a big comfort sucker so not sure how consistant that experience is.

hth some.

DS 6 DD 8
Dreaming is offline  
#10 of 11 Old 08-12-2006, 09:42 PM
 
Still_Snarky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: californ.i.a.
Posts: 3,228
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Any of you lovely ladies want to join the Tandem Nursing Tribe thread that I just started? Here it is!
Still_Snarky is offline  
#11 of 11 Old 08-13-2006, 04:38 PM
 
pixiepunk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Hampshire County, WV
Posts: 4,231
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My two are 26 months apart, they tandemed for 10 months. I worked on limiting DD's nursing - would offer snacks, drinks, cuddles, a book to be read, special toys we only played w/when i was nursing DS, occasionally Sesame Street or Blues Clues, etc. she didn't always like it, but it was what i needed to do to maintain my sanity. when she realized that i really meant it when i said we only nursing 3x a day (unless she was hurt or sick or something), she stopped asking for the most part and we settled in to a pretty happy groove.

the first couple of months are tough - and it was important for me to remember that they would've been tough whether i was nursing them both or not. it takes a while to adjust to having a new baby around, for everyone. but it does get easier - baby isn't nursing 'round the clock, older child gets used to sharing mama, you get used to mothering both... it all works out in the end
pixiepunk is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off