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Thread: Reverse cycling

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    California
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    Default Reverse cycling

    Hi, my DS is 5 months old. He is breastfed while I'm at home and gets pumped bottles while I'm at work. I work about 30-35 hours/week and my own mom watches DS while I'm gone. I'm lucky to have an abundant milk supply and am able to pump way more than DS ever drinks during the day. On average, if I'm gone for 6-7 hours, DS will take somewhere between 3-6 oz from the bottle while I'm gone (Mom usually feeds him 2 or 3 times during the 6-7 hours I'm gone). During that time, I pump twice for about 30 min. each time and usually get 15-16 oz. I don't mind the oversupply, it doesn't seem to be causing any problems for DS or me.

    Since DS eats so little during the day while I'm gone, he wants to nurse basically non-stop from the time I get home around 4pm until bedtime around 8:30 to make up for what he didn't eat during the day, and then wants to nurse 3 or 4 times during the night. I'm flattered that he prefers me over a bottle, but I'm also getting exhausted. We do co-sleep for part of the night. I put him down in his crib, but usually bring him into bed with us when he wakes for the 3rd time around 3-4am and keep him there until morning. Once in bed, he nurses pretty much nonstop. Sometimes I can sleep ok with him nursing, sometimes not. DH complains that he isn't getting any sleep with this arrangement either.

    I'm happy that my little boy prefers nursing over a bottle and obviously I want to keep it that way, but at the same time I am exhausted. I feel like if he ate a little bit more during the day with my mom, he wouldn't need to get all his calories in during the evening and at night and everyone would get a little more rest. I understand that it's normal for babies to wake multiple times at night and I don't expect that he will sleep through the night anytime soon, but if he could wake 2 times at night instead of 4 that would be fantastic.

    Anyone have any suggestions on how to get a breastfed baby to take a bottle better during the day, so he doesn't have to nurse quite so much at night? Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    Have you checked your milk for lipase? I had this issue with Lilah - she would never drink enough, maybe 8 ounces max while I was away from her for 10.5 hours and she nursed all night long. I coslept with her, so that wasn't so bad, but I always wished she would drink more during the day.

    Anyway, I realized when she was almost a year old that my milk had excess lipase and tasted like VOMIT!! I felt so bad about it and Trixie never had the same bottle refusal problems Lilah had since I scalded any milk I was going to freeze- although she still does nurse all night, so that might just be a baby thing - anyway, check your milk for lipase.
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    Hmmm, no, I haven't checked for lipase. I will do that! You just taste the milk, right? Good thought, that could be it. Thanks for your reply!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    I would taste whatever is there when you get home today and maybe put an ounce in the fridge and taste test it at a few different times over the weekend. My milk seemed ok for about 36 hours but then it was gross. Poor Lilah only had one day a week where she didn't have any vomit milk because the frozen was always that way and then every day she had at least one left over bottle that was used the next way. Poor thing.

    Lipase is pretty easy to deal with, if that's your problem.
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    Well, I tasted my milk, and I think I do have an issue with excess lipase but the milk is okay for the first day or two and only seems to go bad after 3-4 days. One day old milk is definitely fine, two days old there is a slight taste but hardly noticeable. By four days old, it's nasty. However, my mom has been giving DS milk from the day before or at most two days before, so I don't think that's the reason for him not taking much milk from the bottle: Oh well, thanks anyhow for the suggestion. I need to check my freezer stash now...bet it's all ruined and will have to start from scratch

    To deal with lipase, you scald milk on the stovetop as soon after pumping it as possible, right? I'm thinking I may need to do this just with Friday's milk and then put it in the freezer to begin rebuilding my stash. I always pump over the weekend due to engorgement so he gets Sunday's milk on Monday, so the lipase shouldn't be an issue since the milk is still pretty fresh. I've heard scalding the milk ruins some of the immune and nutritional properties, so I'd rather not scald all his milk unless I have to. I will scald any that I'm going to freeze, though.

    Also, I've heard that storage containers may make a difference with excess lipase--that it has something to do with the interaction between tap water that you washed the bottles in and the milk? Do you know if this is true? If so, it seems like I could get around the issue by pumping into milk storage bags. That would be easier than scalding everything.

    Thanks again for the help!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    Bumping. I've taken care of the lipase issue with my milk, LO is getting milk that is no more than one day old and that tastes fine to me. Yet, he still does not drink much during the day while I'm gone. I think he just does not like a bottle. As a result, he wants to nurse constantly from when I get home around 3-4pm until 11pm-12am that night. He then wakes again around 4-5am and is up every hour or so until we get up around 7am. This means that DH and I never have any alone time together in the evenings anymore, and also that I'm constantly tired. Does anyone have ideas on how to get him to take more from a bottle? I think if he ate more during the day he wouldn't have the same need to nurse nonstop all night long.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
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    81

    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    What about starting solids once a day when he is 6 months old?
    I started cereal with EBM at that time with DS1 and he loved it! That way he is still getting BM plus a little more calories and your mom could feed him with a spoon...
    Just a thought. I'm sure other experienced moms will give some more advice soon...
    Last edited by @llli*hermione; April 30th, 2012 at 08:31 AM.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    @hermione--that's a good thought. He just turned 6 months yesterday. I gave him oatmeal mixed with breastmilk and he seemed to love it. At the moment he's not interested in more than a few spoonfuls at a time, so I don't think it will help much with his calorie intake just yet, but maybe in a month or two he'll eat enough to actually make a difference. Your post gave me another thought, too, which is that DS is always trying to take my water glass from me and drink out of that, so maybe he'd like milk from a cup better than from a bottle. Worth a try anyway. I just want him to eat something during the day so he isn't trying to get in all his calories from 4pm until midnight. He can sometimes go 6 or 7 hours while I'm gone without eating more than a couple of ounces.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    johor bahru, Malaysia
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    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    Can your mom spoon feed him your EBM during the time she is with him?
    My DD started to reject bottles when she turned 5mths. After much struggles n crying, we resorted to spoon feed her instead when its needed.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: Reverse cycling

    We did get some more milk into Lilah by spoon feeding it to her, mixing it with cereal, etc. after she turned 6 months old. It wasn't much more, but still every drop counts.

    I would try an open cup too joshuas.mommy and see if that works.
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

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