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Thread: How can I get LO to BF again??

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    17

    Angry How can I get LO to BF again??

    So LO was breastfeeding like a champ for the first couple of months. She is about 3 1/2 months old now, gaining weight just fine, diaper output is fine, she is healthy and happy (for the most part). When I started going back to work, and I take her with me to work, I started using the bottle with pumped breast milk a lot. I used to bottle feed her in the mornings or during the day and BF at night, sometimes in the mornings if I was not going into work. I discovered I can pump a ton of milk in the morning so I found it easier to just pump for 10 minutes and be on my way to work so I wasn't later than I already was to begin with. Basically, I could squeeze enough out for two whole feedings if I pumped instead of BF in the morning. This made me get lazy and I felt like I was constantly rushed so I ended up pumping a lot between work and going back to school and LO got VERY used to the bottle. I would even end up with some days of exclusively pumping. Now that I am not working as much and I am finding I have more time to spend with LO I am trying to BF more frequently and only use the bottle when I need to. This is a COMPLETE disaster.

    I always used the boppy, and almost as soon as I put LO on the boppy pillow and she sees what we are going to do she starts screaming and fussing which of course sends me over the edge. Neither of us have a lot of patience and I am starting to think we'll only ever be able to use the bottle with pumped milk. I really don't want to do this, but I don't know how to handle this. I can sometimes BF in the morning when I have milk pouring out everywhere and there is so much LO is basically choking, but otherwise she isn't happy because she won't suckle until a let down, she wants instant gratification that a bottle gives. I tried using the nipple shield and putting a bottle right next to it to trick her to go back and forth until let down, but she would have none of it. She would cry and furiously flail and scream until she knew the bottle was in her mouth and would suck on that like crazy. If I want to try to nurse her in the evenings, forget it. She throws a fit. She used to be content to lay on the boppy and drift in and out of sleep while nursing but it seems like those days are over and she wants the bottle or nothing. I am getting extremely frustrated and just getting angry with LO, which I then feel terrible about. What can I do??? She is only 3 1/2 months old, don't quite want to lose that BF relationship yet...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    19,878

    Default Re: How can I get LO to BF again??

    I'm sorry things took a wrong turn along the way. You had a lot of balls up in the air, and when that happens it's common for something to drop.

    You say your LO gets upset whenever she sees the Boppy. What would happen if you just ditched it? Trying a new nursing position might help break the unpleasant associations for both of you. I'm thinking you might want to try nursing side-lying, cuddling in a warm bed, or perhaps in a warm bath. When mama and baby are relaxed and warm and the breast is right there... Who knows what could happen?

    I'd also suggest trying some instant reward techniques. A baby who is used to the bottle can become unwilling to work for a good letdown. If you pump for a little bit before putting her to the breast, you might cut the time to letdown and thereby encourage her to nurse. Expressing or dripping some milk onto the breast may also help: if she tastes milk right away, she may be more inclined to suck.

    I can understand your frustration with this situation. One thing that may help with that is to offer a paci or pinky finger for the baby to suck on when you're struggling to get her latched. A moment of silence can go a long way to restoring your patience!

    Good luck.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    175

    Default Re: How can I get LO to BF again??

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommal View Post
    You say your LO gets upset whenever she sees the Boppy. What would happen if you just ditched it? Trying a new nursing position might help break the unpleasant associations for both of you. I'm thinking you might want to try nursing side-lying, cuddling in a warm bed, or perhaps in a warm bath. When mama and baby are relaxed and warm and the breast is right there... Who knows what could happen?

    I'd also suggest trying some instant reward techniques. A baby who is used to the bottle can become unwilling to work for a good letdown. If you pump for a little bit before putting her to the breast, you might cut the time to letdown and thereby encourage her to nurse. Expressing or dripping some milk onto the breast may also help: if she tastes milk right away, she may be more inclined to suck.
    I definitely agree!! My daughter nursed for the first two months of life and then we had to go to bottles full time because she just wasn't nursing effectively and was not getting nearly enough to eat (her twin was doing fine ). I decided to try putting her back to breast at about 5 months of age and it worked beautifully after trying a lot of the above suggestions. The instant reward tricks were the most effective and I would highly recommend them. This was our biggest hurdle, as DD just didn't really "get" it without something coming right away.

    The way that I got her back was to use a silicone nipple shield (similar to her bottle type) and to put a bit of milk into it before trying to latch her on. That way, she got a sample of what she was looking for and it encouraged her to keep trying. Once she was nursing well with the shield, we weaned off of that back straight onto the breast.

    Another trick that I used was to, before trying whole-heartedly to breastfeed her, prime her with a bottle. To hold it close to my breast in a position that was similar to how I wanted to nurse her. Then, when it was time to try transitioning her to the breast, I started her out with a couple of sucks from the bottle to let her know what time it was and what I wanted, then quick take it away and sub in the breast with shield. I played a bit of a trick on her but it worked perfectly in the end. She only needed priming (a couple of slurps from a bottle) before three nursing sessions before she just went straight to the breast.

    I hope that you are able to get back to a positive relationship soon! Good luck!
    Mom to amazing twins!
    DD nursed for 3y5m, DS still occasionally stops by for a snack

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    17

    Default Re: How can I get LO to BF again??

    Well here is what we tried this morning. I knew let down would happen pretty quickly in the am/afternoon. I took LO into the rocking chair where she USED to like nursing and sat down with her without the boppy. She didn't cry instantly but was getting fussy and pushy. I had the nipple shield, she wanted none of it and would just make a disgusted face when I put it in her mouth. On top of it she was just shoving her hands in her mouth non-stop, knocking me out of the way at the same time. She fussed and flailed and wouldn't have anything to do with the breast. Then there came the let down, and the shield was filled with milk. You'd think the milk falling into her mouth would help, but she just tossed her head back and forth, then she actually blew bubbles into the holes at the end of the shield shooting milk back out and all over me. I tried filling the nipple shield up with milk several times but she wouldn't even attempt to suck, just turned bright red and wailed. So that session ended with both of us being covered in milk and me having to put her in the crib and walk away angry again. It's making me just want to scrap this whole thing. I find pumping to be a pain so it's like if she won't even nurse sometimes I don't know what to do. She won't stay calm long enough to try to even consider nursing. She just blows up if she can't have milk. This is also coming from the child who is absolutely not satisfied with any sort of comfort or anything unless she has had 8+ ounces out of a bottle before going to sleep.

    The other frustrating part is that she seems to try to latch onto anything but the breast, including my boyfriend's nose that she will try to eat when he is close to her face and giving her kisses.

    From this morning, not only was all the milk completely wasted and LO didn't eat anything, but now I'm going to be able to pump close to nothing. So now everything is irritating me and making me want to pull my hair out. I am on the verge of tears every 20 seconds and I'm snapping at everyone because of this.

    Momma L - I have not been able to get this baby to take a pacifier since day 1, she has always hated the things. She makes the same disgusted face with those as she does with the breast now. She seems to want bottle or nothing. I can try seeing if she will suck on my finger, but it seems like she doesn't even want to try to suck on anything unless it is that damn bottle. I wish I never had to introduce the thing.

    Nicola - I did that bottle thing, and it worked for a couple of minutes but I can't seem to make it last longer without her blowing up on me. I just held it right next to the nipple shield and would try to trick her and switch back and forth but LO just exploded. Am I doing something wrong maybe?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    26

    Default Re: How can I get LO to BF again??

    I'm so sorry to hear about your frustrations. I recently went back to work and struggled with nipple preference the first couple of weeks. What ultimately worked for us was nursing while walking. I would undress from the waist up and hold her in the cradle position while bringing her to the breast. I did this while walking around and the movement calmed her down enough to start nursing. After doing this for a little while, we're back to nursing in a variety of positions and locations. When she's having a hard time calming down to nurse, I go back to nursing while walking and it tends to do the trick. Good luck!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    17

    Smile Re: How can I get LO to BF again??

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*monkee194 View Post
    I'm so sorry to hear about your frustrations. I recently went back to work and struggled with nipple preference the first couple of weeks. What ultimately worked for us was nursing while walking. I would undress from the waist up and hold her in the cradle position while bringing her to the breast. I did this while walking around and the movement calmed her down enough to start nursing. After doing this for a little while, we're back to nursing in a variety of positions and locations. When she's having a hard time calming down to nurse, I go back to nursing while walking and it tends to do the trick. Good luck!
    This has SAVED MY SANITY. I don't know why I didn't think of this, maybe because I was so frustrated I just wanted to sit and cry in the corner. I read this post this morning, got out my Moby wrap, and IT WORKED! I tried a few of the other suggestions again (using the bottle for instant gratification) this morning but that ended up with fussing after a few minutes. While walking, LO sometimes gets a little fussy but immediately calms down from being carried around. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! We are going to keep going with this and see where it leads us!

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