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Thread: Considering stopping pumping

  1. #1

    Default Considering stopping pumping

    Hello ladies. This is my first post after months of lurking. I am 40 yrs old and have a LO who is turning 8 months in a couple of days. I EBF'd for about 10 weeks. I slowly started supplementing and pumping for storage in preparation for my return to work at 12 weeks. My plan was to nurse him in the AM and PM and give bottles while I was at work but he had nipple confusion and I could no longer get him to suckle for very long before he became frustrated so I would just express milk in the AM and PM and bottle feed. Using my frozen supply and fresh EBM I was able to give him half BM and half formula up until he was about five months old. By about six months he was down to about 1/3 EBM and 2/3 formula. My frozen supply was depleted (including some that went bad and had to be tossed ) about a month ago and now I am pumping 2x a day and getting between 5-7 oz between those two sessions which I give to LO as his early AM bottle before going to work. His total intake these days is between 25-33 oz so he is getting about 20-25% of his milk from EBM. My supply when I first started BF was very abundant and I had overactive letdown for a while but over the months has dwindled considerably, as expected. To get my 5-7 ounces, I have to pump 1/2 hour in the AM and 1/2 hour in the PM at a pretty high pressure and I am taking fenugreek and drinking fenugreek tea. I cannot add another pumping session so my question is, is the amount of EBM that my baby is getting enough to warrant continuing at this level? On the one hand I will be very sad to stop giving LO breast milk and on the other hand pumping has become physically unpleasant. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,452

    Default Re: Considering stopping pumping

    Part of tis is you are probably hitting the 8-9 month pumping wall. Just about all moms who pump hit a point where they go, ugh, this stinks, and they have a hard time keeping up.

    A few questions:
    What kind of pump do you have?
    When did you last change the membranes?
    Could you pump more often than just twice a day? I pump way more than that (I EP for a cleft baby)
    Do you do breast compressions?
    How much fenugreek do you take? You should smell like maple syrup when you are taking enough.
    Have you tried other herbs, such as blessed thistle and goat's rue?

    That said, pumping IS just plain unpleasant. I hate it myself. Even with a hospital grade pump and a hands free bra, I really donnot enjoy pumping.

    Looking at what you are doing...I suspect the main problem is not the herbs. Supply is totally based on demand. An EPing mom should pump for at least 120 minutes a day; most EPing moms start with 12 sessions a day and then combine sessions, with most needing to pump at least 4 times a day, with 6 much more common. 2 sessions is simply not enough for most moms to maintain an adequate supply. Some can, but most cannot.

    Any BM is worth the trouble, IMHO.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    255

    Default Re: Considering stopping pumping

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*aprilsmagic View Post

    Any BM is worth the trouble, IMHO.
    Lisa

    Mom to Aimee, born 8/22/11
    for 20 months!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    24,444

    Default Re: Considering stopping pumping

    If it were me walking in your shoes, I would also say that any amount of milk is worth the trouble, for the health benefits to both you and the baby. But I am not in your shoes, and only you really know if the milk you get is worth the hour that you spend getting it each and every day. I know you said you can't add more sessions, but I am wondering if it would be possible to rearrange your schedule just a bit, so that instead of 2 half-hour sessions you did 4 fifteen minute sessions? Same total time, but potentially better milk yield...

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