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Worried about bf next babies. Any advice?

795 Views 7 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  DaryLLL
When I had my dd I had always envisioned nursing her until she weaned herself. Unfortunately, she was in the NICU for several days where she was fed intravenously and with a bottle before they would "let" me bf her. By the time I got my hands on her, she was a lazy girl and didn't want to suck AT ALL. She would latch on and cry because the milk didn't come out as quickly as it did with the bottle.

Anyway, I bottle fed her EBM for as long as possible and she is doing great. I really regret I couldn't bf her straight from the breast and I really hated being tied to a stupid pump all day and then having to bottle feed her.

I'm now pregnant with twins and I'm absolutely petrified of bfing them. What if the same thing happens? What do I do? I felt like such a failure the first time and I don't want that again.

Any ideas? What can I do to prevent or at least keep at bay any problems I may have with bf the twins? I have already informed dh that if the twins, for whatever reason, need to be in the NICU, that he is to be with them 24/7 until I can feed them myself. Unfortunately, the LC was not available when my dd was born as she was born over the Memorial day weekend. By the time she came, dd just plain refused no matter what anyone did.


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Well, I hope some twin moms will chime in here and give you some good advice. Lexbeach, laralou, Tigerchild, and TwinMommy are some members I can think of (oh, also mamacate I think?) who have successfully breastfed twins; you might want to PM them for their advice if they don't see this thread. I know TwinMommy's babies were born around 8 weeks early and she went through a lot to get them to the breast, but she did it with a lactation consultant she saw every day.

Also cross-post on the Parenting Multiples forum as I'm sure you'll get some great advice there.

I would find your own IBCLC (board certified lactation consultant) who will come to the hospital no matter when your babies are born and work with you until they're successfully nursing. You can find the list of IBCLCs in your state by clicking here. I would call around and interview the ones in your area to find out what their rates are, as well as their expertise in getting twins and/or babies born early and/or babies with latching problems is.

I would also work hard to find a ped who is breastfeeding friendly and has privileges at the hospital you're going to deliver at, so that the ped can be an authority figure advocate for breastfeeding. Many peds and NICU nurses don't know a whole lot about nursing and many still believe that it's less stressful for premature babies to drink from bottles rather than the breast (studies have shown that's not true, that if the baby is big and strong enough to drink from a bottle she's big and strong enough to nurse).

Are you following the Brewer diet ( If it were me, I would do everything possible to have a super healthy pregnancy that goes as far towards term as possible to try to set the babies up for a good birthweight and hopefully next to no time in the hospital!

Good luck, mama!
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First of all it sounds as if you are still beating yourself up for not bfing the 1st one. Face it, sometimes it just doesn't happen and that is not the end of the world. That is what formula is for! That's like feeling bad about having a c-section when it's necessary. Second just try to relax. Breastfeeding is the most natural thing in the world. Just let it come to you the way God intended and everything should probably be all right. And, hey, if it isn't I'll bet the 1st did just fine on formula, right!
Thanks for the advice.

Actually, the ped I see is very pro breastfeeding as is the entire ob/gyn staff I have been seeing. They really do push bf. I just found it frustrating that the NICU nurses were not as helpful/encouraging as I had hoped. There was never any problem with my dd weight as she was born weighing 9lbs 3oz and 21.5 inches long. She was definitely the biggest baby there. According to my doctor now, I've gained about 15lbs and I'm 22 weeks. I have a feeling that these babes will be on the larger size for twins, which is great.

I will be delivering at a Military base (National Naval Medical Center), and thus, don't have the option of "shopping around" for a ped. We don't have any other medical insurance, so it isn't an option for us; but like I said, the ped I have now is great. Also, would a private LC be allowed to come to the NNMC? I'm curious about that. I guess I'll have to check it out.

Thanks again!

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Fleurette - check your PM box!
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Hi Fleurette--

I do not have twins but I have been facilitating a bf support group for multiples for 5 yrs. The moms have taught me a lot.

First of all, eat tons of protein. The Brewer diet is a start, but you need more protein.

This book emphasizes more protein than Brewer:

It has been found extra protein is the best thing you can do to keep the babies cookin.' If you are too big to eat much make smoothies with protein powder, the stuff body builders use.

Of course, you need lots of extra other calories too.

Next, read Mothering Multiples, by Karen Gromada. And another small pithy book called Bfing Your Premature Baby is very very helpful.

Attend LLL mtgs now, while you are still pg and not on bedrest!!!

Many twin moms I have worked with took several weeks or even months to get their babies on the breast, esp if they were 35 wks gestation or less. Usually twins born close to term or full term are easier to get on, but sometimes even they are challenged.

We say give a full term singleton baby 6 weeks to "get" bfing. In the case of twins, double it. In case of premies, add in those weeks. You'll want lots of support. (Not to scare you. Some twins get it right away!!!)

If you get in touch with LLL, and the Leader has little to no esp with twins or premies, keep trying. Ask her to find you a Leader who is exp'ed. Using a LC is good, and the free, loving Leader will also be part ofyour support team.

Line up lots of help with meals and housework and care for your older one.

Good luck!
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I, too, was very worried that I wouldn't be able to breastfeed my babies. Breastfeeding twins is an enormous job. Much bigger than I ever imagined! But my babies (now 7.5 months old) are exclusively breastfed, and have never really had any trouble nursing. It took a couple of days in the beginning before they were both pretty good at latching on. And, like Daryl mentioned, it took about 12 weeks before breastfeeding twins felt like second-nature. The first few weeks are really very intense.

The best thing you can do is keep those babies in there as long as possible. I usually hear about mamas having trouble nursing their twins when the twins are born early/very tiny. My guys were born at 38 weeks, and weighed 6-4 and 8-7, so they were pretty big for twins. I had a c-section because they were both breech, and was still able to bf them right away.

Get a twins nursing piilow from The foam version is preferred by most twin moms I know. With this pillow you will be able to easily nurse both babies at once, and have your hands free to do other things (i.e. EAT!)

I have to go, baby awake from nap.

Feel free to ask any specific ?'s!


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