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#1 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 01:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have got to vent...I'm not sure if this is the right place, but I am also hoping to get some advice. I had the worst experience after birth and it still upsets me to this day. Here is the story, my daughter was admitted into the NICU about 10 hours after birth (everything was fine, she was full term and only in there for a day and a half). I was breastfeeding and struggling, but I knew I was going to do it- bleeding nipples and all!! Well when I came into the NICU I noticed no one was bf'ing. There was premixed formula everywhere. The nursery was packed too and I could not find one person bf'ing or from what I could tell feeding bottles of breastmilk. I told them I was going to nurse dd and they looked around confused like oh do we have a chair? They didn't even have chairs in case someone wanted to bf. Finally they cleared off an old wooden chair from somewhere and brought in for me and then set up the screeens even though there was no room. We were completly smashed in the corner b/c of those stupid screens but apparently you have to use them.

Well there was one nurse who upset me the most. She was making comments about how my baby was hungry and my milk hadn't come in yet (I was only 24 hours post partum and my baby was almost 8 lbs). She also said I should just let them give her formula b/c it won't interfere with bf'ing and then I could go get some sleep. She had me questioning everything I was doing. It is such a senstive time and she seemed to be doing everything she could to sabatoge my nursing relationship w/dd. Everytime I came in, there was formula sitting on her bassinet "just in case" I changed my mind, and dd had a pacifier shoved in her mouth even though I didn't want her to have one since we were having latch problems. Some of the babies had the paci's taped over their mouths and I do not know yet if this happened to dd or if this is common practice in the NICU. UGHHHHH It was so frustrating. She told me my baby was crying b/c she was hungry and I had no milk. I also received 2 formula bags "just in case." I was outcasted for bf'ing and they acted like it was so inconvenient. I left in tears everytime and felt horrible, like I was starving my baby. I let them give her 2 ounces of formula but persisited in my nursing attempts. That was the only formula she ever got, I did persist in nursing and eventually got it figured out (no thanks to them).

Now shouldn't it be the other way around...shouldn't they do everything they can to help bf'ing mothers in the NICU instead of promoting formula? I feel bad for those sick babies and wonder if other moms had tried breastfeeding and been discouraged. It is not a great feeling to hear someone tell you that you are starving your baby b/c something must be wrong with you if your milk is not in. If I had not known better I probably wold have accepted more formula and then yeah I wouldn't make as much milk. What would you do??

I sent a letter to the hospital, but it is very obviously a pro formula hospital. I have heard nothing, and am still upset and feel sad for other mothers who have been discouraged.
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#2 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 01:47 PM
 
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Momma - That is sooo frustrating. Good for you for sticking to your guns and sending a letter. You are one strong lady.

I agree that they should be promoting bf, especially in the NICU. Is there a local LLL that you can get on the letter bandwagon? I would make sure letters get to the peds, ob's, hospital director, you name it.

Good luck - and let us know if we can do anything/write in!

Me 27, DH 29, Little E. 02/01/2007 and Baby N. 04/18/2010
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#3 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 01:53 PM
 
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How long ago did this happen? When you sent the letter, where did you send it? To the medical director? Chief Medical Officer? Chief Nursing Administrator? If you don't have names, try to get them and resend your letter. Maybe even add that you expect to get a response. Keep it positive and say that you are seeking help to get them to improve their policies.

Perhaps include information about instituting the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative from UNICEF? http://www.unicef.org/programme/breastfeeding/baby.htm

You can't change what happened to you, but you can try to make it better for future NICU moms and babies!
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#4 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 01:58 PM
 
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I'm so sorry you had such a rough start! You are so awesome for sticking with your plan and being strong despite the anti-bf position of your "caregivers". I am shocked that there are so many hospitals that seem to have this mentality. Writing letters (at the very least) seems like a good idea.
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#5 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 01:59 PM
 
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Sorry. Here's a better link for the Baby Friendly initiative:
http://www.babyfriendlyusa.org/eng/01.html
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#6 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 02:01 PM
 
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I am so sorry this happened to you. I wish every NICU could be as pro-breastfeeding as my NICU. With everything they now about how breastmilk helps sick babies, you would think that they would push for it, but I guess not. I would complain a great deal if I were you. Those policies need to be changed so that other mamas and babies won't have the experience you did. I am so glad that you were able to stay strong for your LO.

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#7 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 02:06 PM
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Pacifiers taped over there mouths!?: Ohmifreakinggoddess! I think I would have flipped out. I know newborns have difficulty keeping those paci's in their mouths... but there are many good reasons for that. I can literally feel my blood pressure shooting up.

Calming breath, nice and deep.
Better.

I am disturbed by the way you were treated in the nursery. I wonder if they let the mothers bed in with their own newborns. My friend recently gave birth and she was all about breastfeeding, but the hospital forced bottle after bottle on her and her husband (who was doing most of the infant care, as she *surprise* ended up with a c-section.) The nurses and doctors urged them to formula feed their daughter because she was premature : (as surprise, that co-erced induction and subsequent c-section resulted in a two-week premature baby.)
So, anywho... I came to see her in the hospital a week after the birth. Her and her DH were in a panic as they came back to the hospital for complications with her incision and reaction to the pain meds. The hospital suddenly refused to give them the premie-formula they had been lead to believe was the 'best' for their baby, because their baby was discharged as a patient.
When the new pappa was directed to the hospital shop he discovered that each 2 oz bottle costs $10. I urged her to try bf-ing, or at least pumping (imagine this: DD couldn't latch). So she asked the nurse for a breastpump, and the nurse told her (in a nasty tone) that if she wanted one she should go rent one from the hospital, or buy one from the store. (She added that they had pre-mixed formula available with a smile... : )

I was disgusted. But the nurse left just as fast as she had come in (to ask how my friend how her 'tummy' was feeling.) So I didn't get a chance to lunge.



Okay... so that problably doesn't help you any.... I was inspired by your account to rant about my own.
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#8 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 02:07 PM
 
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well... I'd say you're correct on some points and a little off the mark on others. Both of my kids were premies (6 and 5.5 weeks early) and spent 9 and 10 days in the NICU. I too planned to bf and was successful with both of my kids.

I would classify the hospital in which I gave birth to be pretty pro-bf. They have LCs, classes for women who need a refresher or who missed theirs (like me), they get you a hospital grade pump right away if your baby is in the NICU, and other stuff like that. The NICU also is full of rocking chairs so moms can hold their babies and they'll help you bf if you want to. (If other parents are in the NICU when you want to bf and a family room isn't available or your baby can't be off the monitors, then they'll set up screens. With ds who is second born, I found these totally annoying but they do this more for the other parents than for the bfing mom in my case.)

So, in your case with a full-term baby weighing 8 pounds, the nurses at your hospital should have been much more helpful in your attempts to bf. There was no excuse for how you were treated.

But.... the mindset of NICU nurses is to get babies eating as soon as possible to put on weight. Most of the babies in the NICU are premies who weren't in uetero long enough to have a fat store that can be lost while mom's milk comes in. So, they start babies with NG tubes, then work to bottles. Also, lots of babies in NICUs are born too early to coordinate suck-swallow-breath which is needed to bf and bottle feed (hence the NG tubes). Not all moms are successful at pumping or even want to try if their babies are weeks away from even attempting to bf. Those moms are just glad their babies are alive and they want them home asap. When you go into pre-term labor (if it's your first baby), all bets are off - that is, your mindset totally changes.

With me, when my dd was born, I just wanted her to eat. I did bf her some in the NICU but I didn't push it thinking she was so little. She would tire easily and we just wanted her to eat so she could come home. Luckily for me, she never developed a preference for bottles and I switched her completely to bf (nursing rather than ebm in bottles) at three weeks old.

Contrast that with my son who was born three days later gestationally than my dd. I knew what to expect with him. And I knew that nipple preference was a huge issue and could spell disastser for bfing. So, I pushed to nurse him as much as possible right away. He had great breathing and everything else so he didn't have to be monitored much. But he did develop jaundice and lost weight which is why we were in the NICU longer than 4 or 5 days. My son only got 2 bottles per day once the NG tube was out - that was cus I was at home sleeping since our NICU didn't have anywhere for parents to sleep in.

So, while you're totally correct that your hospital should be encouraging moms to bf and pump at the very least cus bm is best especially for premies, I can understand how you would not have seen moms actually bfing in the NICU. I didn't either.
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#9 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 02:09 PM
 
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I'm curious if anyone has any info as to why this attitude is so prevalent. One would think that in the NICU would be the most bf-friendly of places, since they supposedly have the health/recovery of the babies as the number one priority - well-documented that bm is the best possible thing for babies. I don't get it.

Also, I just donated 100 oz. of my milk to a baby in the NICU at my local hospital on Tuesday. He wasn't eligible for donor milk since he was born full-term. (He was in the NICU because he was born to a critically ill mother.) At least they have donor milk to give to the critically ill babies, but I think it's so weird that they would draw the line. Otherwise, I think our hospital is pretty bf-friendly. I wonder if there is a shortage of donor milk?
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#10 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 02:11 PM
 
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Pacifiers taped over there mouths!? Ohmifreakinggoddess! I think I would have flipped out. I know newborns have difficulty keeping those paci's in their mouths... but there are many good reasons for that. I can literally feel my blood pressure shooting up.
Oh god, yes. I meant to say something along these lines too. WTF?
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#11 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 02:17 PM
 
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But.... the mindset of NICU nurses is to get babies eating as soon as possible to put on weight. Most of the babies in the NICU are premies who weren't in uetero long enough to have a fat store that can be lost while mom's milk comes in. So, they start babies with NG tubes, then work to bottles. Also, lots of babies in NICUs are born too early to coordinate suck-swallow-breath which is needed to bf and bottle feed (hence the NG tubes). Not all moms are successful at pumping or even want to try if their babies are weeks away from even attempting to bf. Those moms are just glad their babies are alive and they want them home asap. When you go into pre-term labor (if it's your first baby), all bets are off - that is, your mindset totally changes.
Aha, thanks for the explaination. That makes sense.

Still, I think doctors and nurses in the NICU should know better than to treat all babies in the NICU as if they are preemies. It seems like it should be obvious that encouraging bfing with an 8 lb full-term baby is the way to go!
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#12 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 02:31 PM
 
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Originally Posted by dirtgirl View Post
Aha, thanks for the explaination. That makes sense.

Still, I think doctors and nurses in the NICU should know better than to treat all babies in the NICU as if they are preemies. It seems like it should be obvious that encouraging bfing with an 8 lb full-term baby is the way to go!
YES! I totally agree with this! In fact, NICU staff should encourage all moms to at least pump (which my cousin who had 27 and 34 weekers did as did I) - bm helps premies grow so much better than formula.

But, if you've never had a baby in the NICU, especially one that is pre-term, it can be hard to see the how and why of what's done. But, again, while I understand why the nurses do some of the things they do, those things are not necessarily the best practice, kwim.
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#13 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 03:36 PM
 
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So sorry, mama - there's no excuse..."medical professionals" indeed!

~Marie: Mom to DS(17), DS(16), DD(14), DD(10), DD(8) & someone new on the way.
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#14 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 06:03 PM
 
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Pacifiers taped over there mouths!?: Ohmifreakinggoddess! I think I would have flipped out. I know newborns have difficulty keeping those paci's in their mouths... but there are many good reasons for that. I can literally feel my blood pressure shooting up.
GASP! When I read that I couldn't believe it. I used to joke around saying I was going to invent something to keep the paci from falling out, but there are so many times that my kids would gag and squirm and FIGHT it. Sometimes they just don't need to suck and that is downright wrong. I would report that. Sounds like the nurses are just being lazy. I've been in a NICU before (and PICU) since my middle child spent months in the hospital after her birth. Ummm...they stand about 10' from their isolets. That's just so wrong....

I'm really sorry that you had this experience. A good friend of mine had her son at 26 weeks and they did nothing but encourage her to pump, pump, pump (she couldn't hold him for weeks and weeks) and he was being fed with a tube. They also encouraged her to hold him immediately when she could (obviously she pressured them into letter her do this ASAP when it was safe) and they had enough rockers for EVERY mama with a baby there. They also provided her with a hospital grade pump to take home *AND* a pump room with a TV!! I spent many days with her in that room, too. This is the same friend that made so much milk that she stored it in 3 different freezers (mom, dad, and our house) and she had so much extra milk that my child benefited for 2 months from her breastmilk as well (my kids are adopted).

Every hospital should be like the one my friend was in and again, I'm really sorry. But you are one strong woman for hanging in there.

ETA: I was just thinking about something and unless your child was having issues like my friends baby did, they had no right to push formula on you. My friend HAD no choice but to also use Neo-Sure formula/bottle a few times during the day due to some medical issues (I want to say reflux?) and rice cereal had to be mixed in. I know...that is usually NOT recommended, but I can't remember his specific problem and rice cereal turns completely runny in breastmilk, so she had to use the formula.

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#15 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 06:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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YES! I totally agree with this! In fact, NICU staff should encourage all moms to at least pump (which my cousin who had 27 and 34 weekers did as did I) - bm helps premies grow so much better than formula.

But, if you've never had a baby in the NICU, especially one that is pre-term, it can be hard to see the how and why of what's done. But, again, while I understand why the nurses do some of the things they do, those things are not necessarily the best practice, kwim.

That is very true and something I had not thought! I cannot imagine what it would be like to have a preterm baby in the NICU, it would be very different from my case.

Thank you all so much for the support. It feels good to talk about it becuase I am still upset by the whole birthing experience in general (not just the bf issues). I looked up the address that I sent the letter to and it was their survey processing center : So I do think it would be better to get names and write another. This will give me a chance to make it better now that we are past those newborn days. I do understand about wanting to put weight on the babies, but where my dd was there really weren't any tiny babies. That is not to say however that many of those babies were preterm, they were just bigger/older. My main concern is how the nurse handled our indivdual situation (and the taped paci's- has anyone else seen/experienced this...still hoping there is a reason...). It also really bugged me that they didn't seem to have the resources for a breastfeeding mom. I felt like I was such a nusaince to them. Anyways, thanks for your input and helping me go from here.
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#16 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 10:36 PM
 
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I am so sorry you had this experience and I hope you are able to effect change.

It just reminds me how lucky I am to have SEVERAL baby-friendly hospitals in my area. My colleague's wife had an emergency c-section at 28 weeks because of pre-eclampsia. Their baby girl is in the NICU in a local hospital. The momma encouraged to pump (which she is proudly doing) even though she has a has a disease that requires her BM to be frozen before giving it to a pre-term infant. And, but they started suggesting Kangaroo care as well during the very first week. It makes a big impression on a mom when she brings her pumped milk into the huge walk-in freezer for the first time.

That's the kind of NICU every momma should have available. And it makes me sad that you didn't get one like that.
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#17 of 32 Old 03-23-2007, 11:55 PM
 
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I had almost the exact same experience. I had NICUed twins (1 for 2 days, 1 for 12). There were not preemies and not low birthweight (1 was 8.6!). They were near-term fully alert babies who latched immediately and NEEDED their parents.

For the 1st 2 days I had to nurse them in a wheelchair. I had to call the NICU around the clock to "ask if it was good time for feeding". I had to take a public elevator to a different floor in my bathrobe after a (justified) c-section around the clock. They so clearly and obviously did not want me there. But I just kept showing up every 3 hours. I swear I could hear them mumbling under my breath when I arrived. In 7 days 1 neo sought us out 1x to talk with us. The rest of the time we had to chase them down.

One night a nurse told my DH to "stop bothering" my DD. Another night a nurse told him to "leave her alone". Someone told me to "stop pushing my own agenda" (exclusive BF).

After 4 days of this horror both babies were approaching the magical, mystical 10% loss mark (as if I am supposed to keep 2 babies weighing 15+ pounds total from losing 4 freakin' days after birth). A neo, a nurse, and SW spent hours torturing me and telling me to "adjust my expectations". Eventually my older DDs pedi got involved and an LC I trusted, and I agreed to supp but I made the neo write explicit orders. I told him that if I came in there and found them pouring formula down DDs throat I would sue. Actually come to think of it DH nearly go into a fistfight with the guy...

We had DD transferred 2 days later. I couldn't take it anymore. I think about this daily. Mostly I think the same things - in a NICU of all places why don't they APPLAUD BF?

I was a veteren BFer (BFed older DD) and didn't need help/take up their time. I knew exactly what to do. I haven't written my letters yet. I want to get my story published somewhere. And mail a copy to the hospital.

It taught me a good lesson. I'll never stand for medical bullpoop again. I will never ever approach any medical situation cooperatively. It's my way or the highway.
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#18 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 01:07 AM
 
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https://mothering.com/articles/pregna...mama-nicu.html

If you go to the above link on mothering.com under birth stories you can read my NICU story. I find that your experience is common. The epilogue to my story is that I did an exit interview with the nurse manager and wrote a letter and hand carried it to the president of the hospital where I told my story and cited all the studies showing how fundamentally they were practicing non-evidence based care. The hosp. formed a committee to review the policies and the LC who helped me so much tells me that she is getting many more calls from the NICU and they are making some changes. I encourage you to be the squeaky wheel! I just reread and I think you should call and ask to speak to the person you sent the letter to or the NICU nurse manager or an administrator. Offer to fax or email your letter to that person if they didn't see it. Insist that you get some response. Tell them you will call JAACO and any other state hospital accreditation or oversight organizations if they do not respond. It can't hurt for them to know you are willing to push it further!

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#19 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 01:54 AM
 
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Wow, your stories completely shocked me, and now I feel pretty naive because I always assumed that the NICU would support bfing. It's so sad that I'm wrong : .
I just wanted to say how very proud I am of you mamas with NICU babies that insisted on bfing without any support or encouragement.

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#20 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 03:14 AM
 
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I was visiting with my lactation support group today and the lead consultant had just come back from a conference on bfing. She said that there are only 50 'baby friendly hospital's' in the states, and 1000's world wide. She said there are 10 points that each hospital should meet to be considered a 'baby friendly hospital' and they most often lack the point that NO FORMULA, DIAPER BAGS, OR ANY LITERATURE can be distributed through the hospital. It seems there are kickbacks to be had.
Sad, huh?
Seems like there should be a way for women to be heard! Any ideas, ladies???
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#21 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 03:19 AM
 
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My SIL had fabulous bf help with her preemie (6 weeks early) - they never gave anything but her breastmilk/colostrum, and she saw the LC before the Ped even saw her baby (!!).

I do wonder whether the "only feed every three hours" was the way to go or not, maybe someone here knows that. It disturbed me since I know full-term newborns aren't limited like that and instead the AAP recommendation is "on demand" (although not all HCPs will follow that recommendation).

But they did no kangaroo care at all, and there was real emphasis on how babe needed to be in her box, by herself and not being tired out by her parents. I don't think they did kangaroo care at all.

OP - If I were you I'd find as many cited articles as you can (medical ones) and write a follow-up complaint. Demand a meeting with supervisors etc. and see what you can get done. If you sensed any support at all from any staff members there, see if they have advice about tone/approach. It's worth fighting for, on behalf of all the mothers who are too afraid and overwhelmed to question the staff at all.

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#22 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 03:27 AM
 
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Did you deliver at the same hospital I did? I have had 2 kids who were both in the NICU. Both times, the doctor (same doctor) told me that he wouldn't let them leave until I gave them formula. I was so exhausted and brokenhearted about having babies in the NICU that I gave in both times. I still regret it.

I'm so sorry, mama. I know what it's like to look back on your child's hospital experience with heartbreak. I don't know what to do, but hugs to you.
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#23 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 10:02 AM
 
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double post.
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#24 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 11:19 AM
 
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I think it's great that you're speaking out and standing up for mamas and babies. I've never had a preemie, but I've helped mamas with preemies nurse. Our hospital was very reluctant to try things like kangaroo care or even having covers on the isolettes to block out the harsh nursery lights (they were concerned they couldn't see the baby) but the mama I worked with kept advocating for her little baby, and ended up making a lasting change in how they dealt with premature babies. You're doing a great thing!

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#25 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 01:48 PM
 
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Stories like this make me so upset. Both of my children were born early. My dd spent 3 months in a NICU in Virginia and my son spent 17 days in a NICU in North Carolina. With my dd the nurses tried everything they could to help me BF her. Everytime I brought in more milk, they praised me. This meant so much to me especially since I was only 21 at the time. When my DS was born almost 5 years later at another hospital, I found that they had different ways of handling things. The Drs seemed more concerned with allowing me time to hold and BF him than the nurses did. One of his Drs in particular was extremely helpful on getting him to the breast. By the time Miles had been home for one week, he was completely off the bottle (EBM) and totally on the breast. I am so happy to say that almost 10 months later and he is still EBF and has never had any formula.

Moms of NICU babies need so much support. Crap like the OP mentioned cannot be tolerated! I am disgusted at the way that so many medical professionals lack knowledge of the importance of breastfeeding.

Thank you for speaking up to your hospital!
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#26 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 03:43 PM
 
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My NICU was very pumped milk friendly, but very direct breast feeding unfriendly. Over time, I learned which nurses were more BF friendly, and even on of the doctors was BF friendly.

I'm not in an emotional place right now to go there on all the examples :, but there were many.

There was formula on DD's cart, then they put it away because I was bringing in milk. Once I got there and there was formula on the cart. I asked why, and the nurse said, like silly mamma, well we have to feed her something. I said I brought 45 ounces the night before, there is plenty here. They had been place in the wrong spot and the nurse thought I had stopped pumping. GRRRR She got snippy when I made her throw out the formula she was about to feed DD and get my milk. I also got the doctor to remove all orders authorizing formula, as I basically said I no longer consent to formula feeding.

It seems that either the NICU is very good as to breast feeding or very bad.
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#27 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 06:14 PM
 
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My preemie twins were in the NICU for almost 2 weeks and the entire staff was very supportive of my desire to BF. The kids were so early that my milk hadn't yet come in, but I pumped around the clock and brought in whatever I had. They did have some formula via NG tube but by the time they left the hospital we were exclusive BF'ers. The NICU had nursing rockers, lactation consultants, the works -- and the staff was thrilled with my commitment to BFing.


RE: The pacifier taping... I didn't see what you saw, of course, but do you remember last month the international outrage over a Russian orphanage taping pacifiers over babies' mouths? I can only hope that what you saw was not, in fact, a pacifier taped onto a baby's mouth but instead maybe a breathing or feeding device secured with tape. Some of the assistive devices used to help my twins did look very violent and frightening, and did involve tape over their noses and sometimes mouths. I hope this is what you saw!

It sounds like you, and some others here, have had terrible NICU experiences, and I'm sorry about that! I feel lucky that the local NICU staff -- nurses and doctors alike -- was so pro-BF!

Edited to add: I would absolutely write letters to the NICU, the hospital head, board of trustees, etc., as other writers have suggested.

Decluttering SAHM of three. Going for 2011 items in 2011.
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#28 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 06:35 PM
 
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Oh wow. It's sad how common these NICU horror stories are.

Please write the head for the NICU, the hospital admin, any accrediting bodies, ect. And DO include articles from peer reviewed journals. There is LOTS of information out there about the benefits of breastmilk for all babies (including specific info for preemies), how bem helps prevent necrotizing entercolitis, the benefits of kangroo care, ect.

In the case of the OP, maybe ask someone at the hospital why newborns had pacifiers taped to their faces (you're sure it was a pacifier like a soothie or nuk, yes?). And, perhaps even consider mentioning the push for formula (including the bags!).


Thanks for doing this! You may very well help a lot of mothers and babies somewhere down the line.
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#29 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 10:33 PM
 
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I'm very proud of you.

Boys: 12/94, 1/99, 11/03, 6/11. Girls: 11/06, 10/09, 12/12 2ndtri.gif

 
       

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#30 of 32 Old 03-24-2007, 11:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It is nice to hear some of these good stories and very sad that others have had similar experiences. I am feeling overwhelmed at putting together a letter and finding the right place to get it too, but I feel strongly that I need to make a point here. I want to talk to someone and I really hope I can get through to them. I never realized that a negative birth experience would affect me for so long. I know I would feel much better if I knew others would not have to go through the same things I did.

About the paci's- I asked my mom (who was with me) because I was thinking maybe it could have been something else and she said they were soothies. I would really like to think they were something else, but I know the same thing has happened at a local hospital here before. I am going to think postive though and assume medical equiment and when I speak with someone at the hospital we can talk about it and what it could have been. Also I was thinking maybe I would talk to the LC group at the hospital as a start...they would surely have some good info and are very familiar with the hospital.
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