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I NEVER thought this would happen and I feel such sadness and guilt about it -- but over the course of the last several weeks, I've developed such an intense physical/visceral aversion to nursing Elijah (26 months) - especially because he has always loved (and I hadn't minded) to play with my nipples as he nursed. Now, in my 16th week of pregnancy with #2, I am having a very hard time tolerating nursing. I literally have to bite my fist to get through my feelings.

I've read on LLL documents that is quite common, which at least reassures me that I've not gone crazy, but I still feel really guilty and sad for Elijah and me.

I hadn't yet decided about tandem nursing, but I really really don't think I can continue nursing through this pregnancy. I've tried to teach him to just "cover" my nipples instead of playing with them, but he (rightfully) feels so rejected and angry about the massive change in his soothing routine that he becomes more assertive, grabbing my breasts and saying, "mine, mine, mine." Nearly ALL of the moments in the last few months that I've lost patience with Elijah or used a tone that I regret is during these kinds of tensions -- I just literally feel like jumping out of my skin, physically.

Consequently, the tension that has developed between Elijah and I during nursing is just not fair to him -- I so don't want him to associate nursing with me trying to regulate how he touches me, with an argument or his having guilty feelings when I've tried saying "Mommy has an owie," or observing my extreme discomfort. We have had such a smooth, loving and mutually enjoyable nursing experience that I hate the fact there is now conflict within it.

How have been dealt with this and are there any ways to make the aversion go away and/or smooth ways to wean so that we can both be free of this terrible conflict?

Becca
 

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I am going through the same thing. I've resorted to cutting back nursing sessions because I just can't handle it otherwise. I've done deep breathing and visualization exercises while she is nursing and that helps sometimes. I just hope that this part passes soon.
 

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I have been there...though I never let DD "twiddle" at all so that wasn't an issue when I was pg. But I did have aversions to her nursing for an extended period. I would limit nursing to a certain period of time (with frequent warnings), and to certain times of the day. I would also tell her at times that my nipples hurt and we needed to stop for awhile (which was true).

I would not worry about "making" him feel guilty about you being in pain. I think it will just be stressful every time he nurses if you don't do something for you. I understand wanting to let him twiddle since he's done that for a long time, but if it drives you crazy it won't work and you'll both wind up upset. Set some limits so that he may not nurse as much, but the time when he does nurse is not stressful.

BTW my DD did not wean during my pregnancy...and honestly I kind of wish she had. I do think it helped/is helping with sibling "rivalry" though -- she loves her little sister and willingly shares "molks" with her.

HTH,
Nancy
 

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Becca, congratulations on your pregnancy (and also to the other pregnant mom's on this thread).

Make sure you are properly hydrated! Since you are pregnant, nursing, and entering colder weather it'll be easy to become dehydrated.
I was lucky in my 2nd preg that it was a great nursing pregancy. My oldest was only 7mos when i became preg and i was able to nurse him on demand for as long as he wanted while the entire preg. No nipple pain or aversion, great supply. I read early on to stay hydrated to avoid nipple pain. Seemed to work for me.
Fast forward to my 3rd preg when i was nursing 2. It was much rougher. My supply dwindled to none. I had a hard time staying hydrated in the beginning (neausea and vomiting), so i had harder time enduring nursings, which led to shorter nursing times which led to decrease in supply. I ended up nightweaning the 2. My middle child was the age of your son, but i had the benefit of being able to talk to the oldest, which helped the middle child understand much more. When i got through the worst of the nausea (still had it all the way through), i was able to keep more water down. I figured out ways to get water into my system...like drinking much water before bed and during the night when i awoke because i knew i could not drink water in the morning before noon or i'd puke it up. When i was creative with water intake and became more hydrated i was able to nurse more frequently. My colostrum came in at the end of 2nd tri which my boys enjoyed and by then the nursing was much better (still rough at times). They made it all the way through. As soon as that baby was born, it was much easier to nurse.
Still, i would have to say my favorite pregnancy was my 3rd. I really felt my boys bonded well with the baby before she was born. The got to lay their heads next to her (on my belly) as she grew. She'd kick them too (which i secretly enjoyed). And they chased her alot. They got close because of the nursing. It was a great bonding experience for all of us.
I've been nursing all 3 for the last 19mos and i would do it the same way again.
 

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I ended up night weaning my dd. She was not nursing consistenly anymore at night, and nursing then rolling over and going to sleep at bedtime. But when she DID nurse at night, I really got to the point where I couldn't handle it! I ended up sleeping on the couch for a few days. Without me there to smell, she just stopped waking up to nurse. For a few nights after that, she slept on the other side of DH. When we went back to our old sleeping arrangements, she just didn't wake up. I know that we had it easy. And I still feel guilty about taking that comfort away from her at night...but I am still here to snuggle and soothe, and she seems fine! I was to the point where I was getting anxiety attacks when she nursed because it was so uncomfortable...I just wanted to crawl out of my skin! I didn't want her to think that SHE was making me upset, and she's intuitive when it comes to my emotions. So I ended the nigttime nursings, and I think we're the better for it. I wouldn't have given that advice before I lived it, but having been there...I completely understand.

However, if it's all the time that you're uncomfortable, not just at night, I would definately put limits on the nipple play. THere is nothing wrong with learning compassion and limits, and that's what you'd be teaching your child by requiring that your nipples be left alone. Try substituting a pacifier(i know, the devil) nipple or another type of lovey if you have to. My ds likes to play with a mole I have on the side of my abdomen. It HURTS when he does this. We have a constant conversation about it lately while he's nursing (he's 2). Occaisionally I have to take him off of the breast because he won't stop. Yes, he gets upset. However, it's how we deal with THAT that is important. He needs to learn that I (as well as he and every other person) have the RIGHT to not want our body touched in a certain way or place...even if it's changing the rules midstream! Once he realizes that I'm not fooling around, we usually resume nursing with his hands elsewhere. Problem (at least temporarily) solved! sorry to hear that other people have this issue. Good luck.
 
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