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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since Feb I have been getting acupuncture for a few things, the main thing being hormone regulation issues, which in turn affects my whole body. My acupuncurist was quick to suggest that by weaning, I could greatly improve my cycle/hormone issues. At the time DD2 was 15 months old, and that was not an option for me. It largely hasn't come up since then, until today. We are still working on my cycle, which has improved, but is not stable, and is basically showing an "insufficiency." (Tradional Chinese Medicine speak) He did NOT tell me to wean, saying that was up to me (thank you very much), but that by doing so, I would get my energy back and should help everything go back to where it should be. When I started the treatment (which I first tried with bc, which didn't really seem to work) my hormone levels were at premenapausal levels, so I fear I could have been looking at early menupause (I am 34!) if I didn't get this fixed. I am not looking to get my cycle back in order to get pregnant again.

Maybe I am pausing to listen to this more strongly because earlier in the week, I had a lengthy interview with a doc to see if I could be a part of a depression study, in which case I could get free medication. I went at the suggestion of my therapist, who believes that I have some form of depression and could benefit from drugs. As it turned out, I cannot be a part of the study because I am still bfing. Of course there are other ways to get on medication and thank the lord DH has a meeting tomorrow to see if we qualify for low-cost insurance.

At this point, I am ready to try medication. I am not worried about continuing to bf and be on medication, as I would be on one that is safe to take while doing so. My energy levels are not awful. They are in fact much better than they used to be. But I am ready to change my state of mind, or what ever you want to call it.

Talking about it briefly tonight with DH, who will support me either way
, he says that he can tie in my depression to since we have kids. DD1 weaned when I was pregnant with DD2, so my hormones have been "altered" for over 4 years. No one is telling me that my depression is related to hormones, but it could certainly play a role.

DD2 is 23 months, is largely nightweaned (because she mostly sleeps through the night), and mainly nurses before sleeping, naps and bedtime. I don't know that I am committed to CLW but at the same time, I wanted us to work on eventually weaning together. I also have been having boundary issues with nursing sometimes, as in not into her pulling, pinching, at times biting, etc esp to the point where my nipples feel sore.

If you have made it this far, thanks. Anyone have thoughts to share? Any insight would be welcome.
 

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Quote:
My acupuncurist was quick to suggest that by weaning, I could greatly improve my cycle/hormone issues. At the time DD2 was 15 months old, and that was not an option for me. It largely hasn't come up since then, until today.
Congratulations on nursing this long!
Your acupuncurist is probably good at his job, but he sounds terribly indoctrinated in the abundant misinformation about breastfeeding.

If my hormone levels were in question, I'd address that with a qualified herbalist.

I would also persue pharmecutical support if your depression is extended and/or compromising your quality of life.
 

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Do you take omega 3's? And do you practice yoga? Both of those "treatments" have been cited in major studies as good enough to REPLACE drugs such a zoloft. I know this through extensive study due to my mild depression. BTW, I have been making a concerted effort to practice yoga two or three times a week and have been taking EFA's(I am allergic to fish, so have been taking flax oil, and in addition have been taking evening primrose which is supposed to regulate hormone induced mood swings among many other things, and vitamin E, whose job it is to support the other fat chains) religiously for about two months now and it DOES seem to have made a difference. Enough that my mom has noticed (I didn't tell her what changes I was going to make). You might try those things before you wean, if you are at all reluctant to wean. My husband was serious about helping me be happy again, so the time needed for my yoga practice was easy for him to supply. Also,these changes (esp. w/dvd rather than yoga studio) are SIGNIFICANTLY less costly than drugs for us. That said, I have taken zoloft in the past,and it has given me a more even keel. It didn't solve the underlying problems, though. This is why I appreciate the changes I have made. People NEED EFA's; and yoga has given me TOOLS to adjust other parts of my life in a positive way. That's my input, hope it helps.
 

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I had to do extensive acupuncture to regulate my hormones after having a (horrid) IUD (Mirena) - it wacked my body out so bad that even after we got my immune system to start working again (really), my hormones didn't regulate for another few months with acupuncture. She did a hormonal therapy that is compatable with acupuncture (I can't remember what it is called, but it is common). Anyways, in the end, I was still nursing AND better.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
courtenay_e said:
Do you take omega 3's? And do you practice yoga? Both of those "treatments" have been cited in major studies as good enough to REPLACE drugs such a zoloft. QUOTE]

Zoloft is what I am considering taking. I do take omega 3's, and have for quite a while now. I do not do yoga, and my acupuncturist cautioned against my doing it only with a video. But to consider going to a class, I then have to deal with schedules, childcare, etc. I was running for a while, which I am now trying to build up again, which helped TREMENDOUSLY, but not enough.
 

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I would not wean either, I would worry about how you would feel if you weaned before you knew your child was ready. Doing that can worsen depression... if you know your babe wants it but start feeling guilty for not being able to give. I agree that there are many other treatments available! I hope you can find one that helps you feel better!
 

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I agree with the last post. If you wean before you and your child are ready I think it may make you feel even worse.

If you want to go on prescription depression medicine I think you should just pay for it. I don't think free medicine is worth weaning. If you wean him to get free medicine, you will probably end up buying soy milk, organic cows milk, Pediasure or something like that. Where I live, a half gallon of organic cows milk is over $5. How much money are you really going to save? Is it really worth it?

Your acupuncturist said that weaning would give you more energy. I have heard some people say that BF makes Mom have less energy. The people who I heard say this were definately not experts in the subject though. I don't know of any studies about that. I've never heard anyone say after weaning they had more energy. I am skeptical about weaning giving you more energy.

I liked Courtenay e's advice. I would do yoga with a tape (even though acupunturist said don't) I would try nutritional suppliments. I would try long walks with the children. I would pray. Weaning wouldn't even be on my list of things to try.
 

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Even if you are wary of using a tape, there are some great beginner dvds out there. The best ones go pose by pose in the "extras" section and tell you just as well as a teacher would (sometimes better because these are the masters!) what every muscle group should be doing, and how you should *feel* when you are doing a pose. The thing about yoga is that there is no perfect way to do a pose. You do it to your body's ability, not to some standard of perfect. You learn to accept your body where it is that day, that minute, that pose.

If you're still worried, buy two or three classes with a really good teacher (ask around). That's all you need for a solid foundation, and then you'll do great with a dvd. You don't want someone who constantly corrects your body position to their standard of perfect...that's not what yoga's about. They may encourage you to go LESS than you're trying to do at that point, but beware someone who pushes you to do MORE than you're able to the point of pain. That is NOT yoga.

Really, though, there are some fabulous dvds out there and, even if you take a few classes...it'll save you the issues you'll face by weaning if you both weren't ready for it, and that's on top of what pp said about spending money-lots of it-on a replacement for breastmilk. My dd weaned WAY before I expected her to, and she has to drink ricemilk...it's $4 per half gallon and she drinks just about a half gallon a day on some days!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for all the replies. Can't say that I am surprised by any of them.


I was out last night (my first group therapy!) and DH got the DDs to sleep. He told me that DD2 was very sad that I wasn't there. She must have woken sometime in the night and come down to me, and felt like she was then nursing ALL NIGHT long. I do think that she wakes to nurse more if I don't nurse her to sleep.

I do think that it is to early and as I mentioned before, I want us to work towards weaning together, not an imposed plan from me. I think that I can work on my depression/energy issues from a few different angles.

It is hard to discuss this with anyone IRL because while no one will make a stink about my still bfing, talking about whether or not I should continue, esp in light of my possible associated health concerns, is difficult, as many would just say wean already. I am glad that I got to bf this long, but I don't think that means that I should stop already.

Thanks!
 

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Moonshine, I thought I would pop in and let you know that I went through a very similar thing last summer. I was very out-of-whack hormonally, verging on depressed, lethargic, etc. And even my mom, who is normally very supportive, told me I should wean, that it would get me back to normal. DS was 24 mos at the time, and I just didn't quite feel that he would be ready for that. You don't mention specifics of your hormonal problems, but I have been told that I'm dealing with "insufficiencies" too, and here are a few things that have vastly improved my life/health. I started exercising at least 3 times a week (I do aerobic stuff, but I think any type helps), I started taking **natural** progesterone for the last half of my cycle, I started taking EFA's, B Complex, and something called Thyrostart, for symptoms of low thyroid, which I didn't have clinically but sure had the symptoms. Oh, I also started drinking raw organic millk instead of store-bought. This might not be an option for you, but as much milk as I consume, I'm sure I was getting the hormones and crap that regular millk has. The raw dairy has just been amazing. Anyway, it's a few months later and my cycles are 28 days on the dot!! They have never been this normal, I have more energy, I feel 1000% better - and I didn't wean. So I think if you want to keep nursing, there are other things you can try. Feel free to PM me if you'd like specifics on what I have taken. Good luck to you, whatever you decide to try - I know it's a frustrating place to be and you just want to feel better.


Quote:

Originally Posted by moonshine
Since Feb I have been getting acupuncture for a few things, the main thing being hormone regulation issues, which in turn affects my whole body. My acupuncurist was quick to suggest that by weaning, I could greatly improve my cycle/hormone issues. At the time DD2 was 15 months old, and that was not an option for me. It largely hasn't come up since then, until today. We are still working on my cycle, which has improved, but is not stable, and is basically showing an "insufficiency." (Tradional Chinese Medicine speak) He did NOT tell me to wean, saying that was up to me (thank you very much), but that by doing so, I would get my energy back and should help everything go back to where it should be. When I started the treatment (which I first tried with bc, which didn't really seem to work) my hormone levels were at premenapausal levels, so I fear I could have been looking at early menupause (I am 34!) if I didn't get this fixed. I am not looking to get my cycle back in order to get pregnant again.

Maybe I am pausing to listen to this more strongly because earlier in the week, I had a lengthy interview with a doc to see if I could be a part of a depression study, in which case I could get free medication. I went at the suggestion of my therapist, who believes that I have some form of depression and could benefit from drugs. As it turned out, I cannot be a part of the study because I am still bfing. Of course there are other ways to get on medication and thank the lord DH has a meeting tomorrow to see if we qualify for low-cost insurance.

At this point, I am ready to try medication. I am not worried about continuing to bf and be on medication, as I would be on one that is safe to take while doing so. My energy levels are not awful. They are in fact much better than they used to be. But I am ready to change my state of mind, or what ever you want to call it.

Talking about it briefly tonight with DH, who will support me either way
, he says that he can tie in my depression to since we have kids. DD1 weaned when I was pregnant with DD2, so my hormones have been "altered" for over 4 years. No one is telling me that my depression is related to hormones, but it could certainly play a role.

DD2 is 23 months, is largely nightweaned (because she mostly sleeps through the night), and mainly nurses before sleeping, naps and bedtime. I don't know that I am committed to CLW but at the same time, I wanted us to work on eventually weaning together. I also have been having boundary issues with nursing sometimes, as in not into her pulling, pinching, at times biting, etc esp to the point where my nipples feel sore.

If you have made it this far, thanks. Anyone have thoughts to share? Any insight would be welcome.
 

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Zoloft made me VERY tired. It usually makes eveyone tired at first, and I thought I had gotten used to it, but after I stopped taking it 3 years later, I finally could function without a daily nap! I also gained ALOT of weight while taking it, I was up to like 280. It is considered safe while breastfeeing, my DR. did blood tests on my older daughter after I started it, and there was no trace of it in her. I was pregnant with my second, and nursed her for over a year on it, and another 2 after I quit it.

As far as enery levels, the thing that has helped my TREMENDOUSLY, and also put my cycles back on track ( I was having like 22 day cycles), is getting weekly B-complex injections. I feel better, I have TONS of energy, and after 3 shots, my cycles regulated.

I also have suc-clinical hypothyroidism, and we have started treating taht as well, but only recently.

Hope some of that helps.
 

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Thought I'd suggest one more thing. I have a great book that many people here have read (I'm sure) called "Mothering Your Nursing Toddler" by Norma Jane Bumgarner. There is an entire chapter that may be helpful to you, entitled "Nursing: Still Best for Yourself." It discusses all the benefits of nursing a toddler, and also how, well, let me quote...

Pg 49 "...Most mothers at one time or another wonder whether continued nursing will drain their physical resoures, weaken them, or make them prone to illness...overprotective people, even medically trained people, suggest that this is so. But women's bodies are designed for childbearing and breastfeeding so that with reasonable care neither pregnancy nor breastfeeding need produce physical stress. Although breastfeeding and short birth intervals may exacerbate health problems in severely malnourished women, the basic problem is underfeeding and not pregnancy and lactation." (I added the boldface to the type)"...In fact, breastfeeding can enhance a mother's health. Increased duration of breastfeeding seems to have a beneficial influence on fertility, bone mass, and the development of reproductive cancers..."

There are citations within this quote that send you to the studies from which she derived this information. Its a very informative chapter within a very informative book. Might help you, if in the very least, by bringing studies that show the opposite of what your practitioner is telling you to *their* attention...maybe they're willing to learn something new...This chaptertalks a lot about nutrition and what you need to be healthy.

Hope that helps!
 
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