Why do I get such angry feeling toward my baby and hate nursing so much? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 29 Old 01-09-2010, 08:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I just had my second baby 8 days ago and can hardly stand nursing him. I can get so angry and frustrated with him. I nursed my first child for 20 months and did so without any problems till he was about 18 months old. At 18 months I started to really dislike breastfeeding and would get really frustrated with him. I thought it might be his age but now that I have these feelings with a newborn. I have no idea what to do. He wants to nurse all the time and I hate the way it feels. By the end of the feeding I'm so upset that I want to quit and almost resent my baby. I love being a mom but don't know how to handle these feelings of angry and frustration towards my nursing baby. Has anyone else ever felt this way? I don't want to give up nursing but have no idea what to do with these awful feelings that make me feel so guilty.
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#2 of 29 Old 01-09-2010, 08:20 PM
 
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No time to write in detail, but suggest you look into DMER - I think a search of MDC will find you some info.
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#3 of 29 Old 01-09-2010, 10:06 PM
 
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No time to write in detail, but suggest you look into DMER - I think a search of MDC will find you some info.
I think maybe she means EMDR.

This must be really difficult. Are you having any symptoms of postpartum depression or anxiety? Does this occur only when you are actually nursing (maybe related to hormones released during letdown?). Just throwing out some ideas. I hope it gets better for you soon.

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#4 of 29 Old 01-09-2010, 10:27 PM
 
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Back again for a bit more time. D-MER (MER = milk ejection reflex, D=dysphoric). See these posts for more info:

http://mothering.com/discussions/sho...highlight=dmer

http://mothering.com/discussions/sho...highlight=dmer

and also a website http://www.d-mer.org/

It may not be your case, but something there may resonate.

I agree with the PP that postpartum depression is also something to look into.
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#5 of 29 Old 01-11-2010, 07:29 PM
 
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Thanks for posting this. I'm in the same boat, except it sounds like my feelings may be even more extreme. I am so ashamed of how much I hate my baby when nursing that it is hard to even articulate it. I actually have a strong desire to hurt her back that I have to control through sheer force of will.

I have zero signs of PPD and love, love, love my happy, easy baby all the time I am not nursing. I really feel like for my sanity I should just quit already, but then I would feel like a bad mom. D*mned if I do and d*mned if I don't.

I'm Kellie :, married to Chris , and mom to one baby girl (7/12/09).
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#6 of 29 Old 01-12-2010, 11:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It's nice to know that I'm not the only one with the extreme feelings of anger and frustration. I looked into DMER and I'm not sure that it really fits my situation. There have been several times that I have really wanted to quit, but I'm sure that in doing so it would only make things worse for me. I've talk to a couple of people who have gone through the same thing and upon giving up and going to formula things did not get better, but ended up getting worse. They felt that their guilt over quitting damaged the bond they had with their baby and the harsh feelings spread into other aspects of their relationship with their children.

It is not always easy but I'm trying to find ways of coping with my feelings. I try to distract myself by reading or watching tv, talking to a close friend, or doing some relaxation techniques. I have also found that being rested makes a big difference, its always worse at 2:00 in the morning. I try to keep positive and I keep telling myself that it will get better.

Has anyone ever dealt with feelings like these and continued to nurse their babies? Did things improve any? Has anyone ever given up and if so did things get better or worse? Any insight would be greatly appreciated.
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#7 of 29 Old 01-12-2010, 11:36 PM
 
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I'm wondering if there are any supplements (such as magnesium, etc) that may help. I don't have that experience - hopefully someone here may have advice, or know which forum to cross post in to get some advice.
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#8 of 29 Old 01-13-2010, 11:49 AM
 
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Originally Posted by louoftwo View Post
Has anyone ever dealt with feelings like these and continued to nurse their babies? Did things improve any? Has anyone ever given up and if so did things get better or worse? Any insight would be greatly appreciated.
I felt this way for the first 2 months of BFing. I almost gave up at 6 weeks, because my nipples suddenly started bleeding as well. I would get very agitated though, and I dreaded feeding him after finishing the last feeding. I was in tears about it often as well. And no, I was not going through PPD. The 2 am feedings were always worse. I admit that I had to set him down once or twice, because I would get irritated, or I would finish and put him back in his bassinet next to DH and walk out of the room, because I need to cool down.

One thing that I think will help you, is getting to the 4-5 hour stretches at night. My nighttime feeding with DS got a LOT better when I just got 4-5 hours of sleep, even during the day.

You sound like you really want to BF, which is a good thing, because I think that's what pushed me through, is I didn't want to give up. I did, however, start pumping every other time to give me a break, and for some reason that really helped me. I didn't want to and DH kept telling me to see if it would help, because I would be in tears while BFing. I only did it when things got really bad usually, because I was afraid of losing my milk (which I didn't, since I was BFing every other time, and didn't do it for overly long periods of time).

Things did eventually improve, but I will admit that they got a little worse before they improved. I kept telling myself 'things can only go up at this point' when I was feeling really down. I almost gave up, but the pumping thing had helped. Distracting yourself is probably another good thing. I did that also.

I hope this may have helped and that things get better for you quicker than they did for me. It will get better, no matter what decision you make, whether you BF or give your baby formula. And your baby will be okay, so don't obssess too much over guild trips you get for not doing things any particular way.

Lydia , wife to DH , mama to Titus (8-11-09) and we just started
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#9 of 29 Old 01-13-2010, 04:20 PM
 
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I have heard of this from several mamas. One thing, is that some people think it is a biological response, that your body is trying to protect it's reserves if they are low. So I immediately think- are you getting plenty of nutrition? Drinking lots of water? Still taking prenatal viatimins or drinking pregnancy tea? Getting rest? All those things could make it easier for your body, which might help make it easier for you emotionally, too.
Big hugs to you.
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#10 of 29 Old 01-16-2010, 12:09 AM
 
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Motherwort can help level you out postpartum.

HUGS to you! If you are feeling angry enough that you think about hurting your baby, do get help/support from someone loving right away. Post-partum psychosis is extremely rare, but very real, and on that, I'd err on the side of caution.

Is it possible that there is something physical causing this aversion? Thrush is the first thing that comes to mind.

Are you having physical discomfort when feeding your baby, or is it entirely an emotional aversion? Does pumping/hand expressing create the same feelings of aversion as nursing? And is the aversion particularly strong at certain times of day?

I'm so sorry you are going through this, but glad you were able to post here for support.
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#11 of 29 Old 01-16-2010, 01:00 AM
 
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Diet? Allergies that is. Some cause feelings of anger / rage.

Look into it. I am.

Hugs mama.
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#12 of 29 Old 01-16-2010, 07:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by morgainesmama View Post
Motherwort can help level you out postpartum.

HUGS to you! If you are feeling angry enough that you think about hurting your baby, do get help/support from someone loving right away. Post-partum psychosis is extremely rare, but very real, and on that, I'd err on the side of caution.

Is it possible that there is something physical causing this aversion? Thrush is the first thing that comes to mind.

Are you having physical discomfort when feeding your baby, or is it entirely an emotional aversion? Does pumping/hand expressing create the same feelings of aversion as nursing? And is the aversion particularly strong at certain times of day?

I'm so sorry you are going through this, but glad you were able to post here for support.

It was me that posted about wanting to hurt the baby, but I don't know if the rest of the post is directed at me or the OP or both. (I assume both.) The ONLY time, EVER that I have even the tiniest negative feeling toward my baby at all, is WHILE nursing. The second before, and the second after, and all the time in between, I am the happiest, lovingest mama you can imagine. So I don't think it is related to anything PP.

I have thought I had thrush for the longest time, but all the professionals tell me no. I think they're right and it's just terrible latch.

I am sure it's related to the pain. Six months of horrible, horrible pain that no one can fix has bred this response into me. Add in the un-fixable low supply to add failure to injury. Even on the rare occasion we get a pain-free nursing session I still feel this way. It may be over though. She has gotten her first tooth and it's driving home how bad her latch is. The pain is tenfold. I just can't do it anymore. I'll pump as long as I can (and no, there is no aversion to pumping.)

I'm Kellie :, married to Chris , and mom to one baby girl (7/12/09).
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#13 of 29 Old 01-16-2010, 07:39 PM
 
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I was directing at both. Postpartum psychosis is so seldom discussed and so often overlooked, that I felt compelled to mention it.

Pain while nursing is such a difficult thing, and so pervasive. If pumping and feeding is the solution that works for your family, then it is the right solution for you -- but finding a competent, skilled professional who can really help you and listen to you and support you may help if you wish to continue feeding at the breast. Unfortunately, many health professionals, including some LCs and IBCLCs, are not able to provide good information to mothers.
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#14 of 29 Old 01-16-2010, 07:43 PM
 
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I ran a new mother's group for seven years. Anger at baby almost always signals a postpartum depression of some kind.


Get help and take care of yourself.
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#15 of 29 Old 01-20-2010, 01:26 AM
 
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It does sound like ppd to me, as someone who has dealt with it, I say do what you need to do to take care of yourself.
As far as painful latch, have you seen a really good lactation consultant and/or doctor?

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#16 of 29 Old 01-21-2010, 01:43 AM
 
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I have some insight to add to this, maybe helpful and maybe not
I breastfed my daughter exclusively for the first two days of her life, but due to her horrible latch my supply was low. This caused a hungry baby that wanted to feed every 15 minutes. It was exhausting and I did find myself resenting her and feeling very angry when she would cry to eat. In the end I supplemented with formula and at 6 weeks old switched her exclusively to formula. She is now a very smart and talkative two year old and our relationship was so much better when she was on formula as she was a happier baby due to getting enough food and I was also happier. There was no underlying reason to my resentment and anger like PPD, I was just tired and at that time, in that situation...breastfeeding was just too hard on me emotionally and physically.
I also have a 8 week old baby boy. I am able to happily breastfeed him exclusively and he latches well.
So in the end you have to make the right decision for your family. I am very glad to be able to breastfeed my son, but my daughter is one the smartest little girls I have ever met so I do not think it hurt her any to be fed formula
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#17 of 29 Old 01-21-2010, 01:51 AM
 
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Oh, I actually remember this the 1st week after birth. I could not for the life of me figure out side lying nursing. So whenever she needed to feed at night, I had to carefully sit up (I had a 3rd degree tear) and find a strange half lying/half sitting position to nurse her. Then once she fell asleep, DH had to help me lie back down. It was horrible. If I leaned to far down while nursing, my bum hurt. If I sat up too much, I tightened my abdomen and made that hurt. The sheer exhaustion and need for my body to heal itself led to me being mad at her. It was the strangest feeling ever! Very alien. And I agree w/ the PP who said it is the body trying to protect itself.

I think she may have had a sore neck from the birth b/c later on we resolved things and I started nursing on my side. It made a big difference.

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#18 of 29 Old 01-26-2010, 04:49 AM
 
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I had discomfort nursing both of my babies as newborns. With the second one I would not be mad at the nursling, but I would want my toddler to not touch me at all, or be near me, or make noise while I nursed the baby for the first few weeks. It was just dealing with the pain that made me emotional unable to cope with anything else going on while nursing. I now get this occionally with my now 11 mo. old. It is mild, but sometimes I feel my milk supply is low and he wants to keep nursing and nursing. He will suck really strongly and it hurts. So I try to avoid nursing him during those times and I sometimes get really irritated at him wanting to nurse. I find that many times the mood I have toward my children in general reflects my physical state. I notice sometimes I will feel really frustrated and angry with them even if I feel too thirtsy.
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#19 of 29 Old 01-27-2010, 02:55 PM
 
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That is very unfortunate. I have a (high-maintenance) eleven year old, and I am breastfeeding my five moth old. I understand the demand on your physical energy, and time. Could it be that your frustration is not so much with nursing the baby, as it is that you are just plain tired? That would certainly cause your patience with the newborn's contant urges to nurse to be excessively short. My advice to you is to 1) speak to your gyn/ob about these feelings 2) give yourself a break: if nursing the newborn is taking too much of a toll on you, then you are allowed to take him off the breast and nourish him with formula. He has definitely benefitted from the time he has spent nursing. Please do something, though. I know that you love your baby, and you do not want him to pick up on those negative feelings. You want him to feel as loved and secure as possible.
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#20 of 29 Old 02-02-2010, 09:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you everyone for your support and advice. It has given me a lot to think about. My baby was a month old yesterday (where does the time go!) and we are still exclusively bf. It is not always easy, especially since we are now dealing with thrush and an oversupply, but things are slowly getting better. I've decided to take it one day at a time, one feeding at a time.

I have found that there are triggers for me that make it worse, such as a screaming toddler, hunger, tiredness and other things of the sort. Bf is so important for us and I feel such joy to see how my milk is nourishing him (he was 7 14 at birth and one month later weighs 11 8!). Again I would like to say thank you and encourage other moms with similar feelings that things will get better and that we are truly blessed to be able to Bf our babies!
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#21 of 29 Old 02-02-2010, 10:04 AM
 
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I have been thinking of you - I'm so glad to hear that things have gotten a little better. I hope they continue to improve. Happy 1 month Birthday to your baby, and congratulations to you!
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#22 of 29 Old 02-03-2010, 02:23 PM
 
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Just wanted to say I have felt similarly in the past. With my daughter, I gave up breastfeeding pretty early. But, we had other problems. She wasn't gaining weight. Latch problems, reflux problems and we couldn't seem to get beyond it and get my girl gaining weight. So, I always thought it had something to do with that. Then when my son was born, at first I was FINE with breastfeeding. Everything I dreamed it would be. The "the feelings" crept in. For me, there was a direct correlation with those feelings and lack of sleep. The more tired I was the more angry I'd feel breastfeeding. I also learned that sitting and breastfeeding had this feeling of being trapped, pinned down, no freedom-type emotions attached to it. Once I learned that, and learned what it meant to be to be needed on such a deep and fundamental level by another human being I was able to reframe the experience for me. I hope some of this helps you, and that things are getting better. I definitely think breastfeeding is the best thing you can do for your baby, nutritionally and I absolutely agree with the bonding and biological benefits to breastfeeding. That said, it's not a great bonding experience if mom is sending out anger the whole time, is it? Let's say you had to pump and then give the breastmilk in a bottle while you looked into your baby's eyes and cuddled close? Would that be so bad?
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#23 of 29 Old 02-05-2010, 07:35 AM
 
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You don't need to respond to this, but if there is any abuse in your past, that could EASILY effect your nursing experience. I just wanted to put that out there. It's not something that you have to live with or accept as the way it's going to be. There is help out there. Look up Penny Simkin - she's done some teaching and has written a book related to this. That was very eye opening for me. She was a guest on a Motherwear breastfeeding podcast talking about childhood abuse and breastfeeding, one of the first people I've heard speak out about it, even though it effects so many mothers. Being angry or resentful towards baby during nursing is very common for abuse survivors, so like I said, I just wanted to put that out there. It would be very helpful for you to find a counsellor to speak to about this, if it's something that might be contributing to these feelings.

Weirdo Mama to amazing Aurelia, age 9 & Ember Roslyn, age 3!
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#24 of 29 Old 02-05-2010, 01:44 PM
 
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I had feelings like that too. I read something at about 5 months old and it struck me and it changed how I felt. It was on those wheel things you get fro the dr that describe the stages babies go through, what to expect and the parent/caregiver role. My role was to be "gentle and responsive." And those words brought tears (still does) to my eyes, b/c I didn't feel gentle and responsive to that point. I went from reactive to responsive and it made a difference in our relationship. Hugs and good luck to you......

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#25 of 29 Old 02-05-2010, 01:57 PM
 
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Just wanted to say my baby finally (after 6 months) fixed her latch and the feelings are gone - well, except for the occasional bad latch. I hope the OP can find the problem and fix it too.

I'm Kellie :, married to Chris , and mom to one baby girl (7/12/09).
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#26 of 29 Old 02-05-2010, 02:08 PM
 
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yeah! good to hear! It's awful when what should be a nuturing experience turns into a nightmare. Glad it has worked out for you. Did you work with a lc or did it just fix on it's own?

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#27 of 29 Old 02-05-2010, 04:13 PM
 
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We worked with so many people in the beginning and no one could help.

You know what it was? The Avent bottles. Switched to Dr. Browns and we've been fine. She popped a tooth and it really exacerbated the bad latch. I pumped for a few days (Avents don't fit my pump and DBs do) and then randomly latched her because it was really late. Viola! No pain (or minimal pain).

I'm Kellie :, married to Chris , and mom to one baby girl (7/12/09).
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#28 of 29 Old 02-05-2010, 04:38 PM
 
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I'm so sorry that you feel this way, and definitely second seeing a lactation consultant, even if it seems you are doing everything right, because sometimes they have random helpful suggestions about positions, herbs, or just are a shoulder to cry on. That helped me with my first guy, when I had six blisters on each nipple, low supply, and a kid that screamed 24/7 and was not gaining weight. I also had feelings of anger and wanting to throw him out the window!

With my current baby #2, now three weeks, I still HATE breastfeeding but I am able not to blame him. Thank god for my serious issues with my own weight, because if it were not for the weight loss effects of breastfeeding, I would not do it for one more second.

It sounds terribly selfish (I know how bad it sounds, but I'm being honest), but the only way I can get through this and not blame my baby is to think in my mind that I am doing this for ME...get my uterus back in shape, lose weight, reduce risks of cancers, have a break from my period, save money. Just how I cope.
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#29 of 29 Old 07-03-2011, 11:56 AM
 
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I feel the same way, the pain of nursing, not latching well, the sounds she was making while it happening all problems i have. i have switched to pumping for my 3 week old daughter now and has gotten slightly better (still hate the gulping sounds) but now i feel that somtimes i can switch from pumping, to formula, and back to breastfeeding when i want to. I would recomend pumping and feeding that way.

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