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Thread: Ftm help!!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Norman, OK
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    Default Ftm help!!!

    Good Morning Ladies,

    I'm a FTM of a beautiful 3 week old little girl. I've been doing my very best trying to breastfeed but I need some support. I'm physically and emotionally exhausted and I seem so out of touch with my body and boobs!

    Baby girl does a decent job of latching when I'm not too full. I try to hand express some before each feeding to make it easier for her. Sometimes though she fights me and seems so irritated.

    We do supplement formula on occasion and she has no problem going back and forth between the two. (bottle wise).

    I'm scared to go all over to formula and I really want to be the rockstar mom who is able to pump and breastfeed her baby. I'm just at this wall and I need help. Please let me know of any tips or tricks. I'm going back to work when she's two months old so we will be transitioning to bottle in a couple weeks.

    I have a pump and I've tried to using it, but that seems just as frustrating.......

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    Mothering a 3 week old newborn is exhausting no matter what you feed her. It's best not to try to overextend yourself. Just set up camp on the couch or your favorite spot and nurse the baby. House work and other chores can wait. I loved having a sling so that I could get out for a quick walk with the baby.

    If she's already getting an occasional bottle, there is no need to transition any further before you go to work. You know she will take a bottle while you are away, and you know that she will nurse when she is with you so you are good to go on that front. Honestly, I would limit bottles as much as possible at this point.

    Pumping can take some getting used to. Make sure the horns are the right size for your breasts. That makes a huge difference. I found it was best for me to distract myself during pumping. I put on a movie while I pumped.

    Is there some reason you are giving formula? Every time you use formula, you are telling your body to make less milk.
    K. Sophia - Mama to my little lactivore, the amazing Mr. X (11/10).

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    Also in order to build up a stock of milk for your return to work, you will want to pick a certain time during the day to pump and pump at that time every day. It is still very early and your milk supply is very sensitive to outside influences. Pumping at random times can drive a really nasty oversupply, and you don't want that. You might not get much milk at first, but by pumping every day at the same time, your body will get the signal to make more milk at that time and you will start getting more when you pump.

    You should also pump every time you give a bottle of formula because the reverse is true as well. If your baby eats, but no signal is sent to your body that she has eaten, then your body will make less milk.

    It is really hard work early on, but it really does get much easier with time and it is so worth it to stick with breastfeeding in the long run.
    K. Sophia - Mama to my little lactivore, the amazing Mr. X (11/10).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    middle of IA
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    1,885

    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    hii mama,

    congratulations!!

    i found the book "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding" to be a fabulous resource (and only $14 on amazon). and, of course, the forum here.

    PP's advice is spot-on.
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

    Nursing, pumping, cloth-diapering, babywearing, working professor mama with the awesomest SAHD ever.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Norman, OK
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    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    Thanks for the replies ladies. @phi, the reason we supplemented was at first, she was very dehydrated. My milk hadn't come in and she was just screaming. The pediatrician recommended Similac Advanced. Which is what we used on occasion until my milk came in. She is still 99% breastfed but there are times when I literally can't keep my head up. I feel like I'll pass out from lack of sleep, food, energy, etc....so my hubby will give her a bottle. It seems like she sleeps so much better when she drinks formula....which is SO tempting.

    It's so hard and discouraging to watch her get so satisfied with a bottle when I'm trying so hard to make breastfeeding work. Feedings can sometimes take 45-1 hour, with diaper changes, position changes, etc, then it's time to feed again!!

    I'm sorry if it sounds like I'm whining, just frustrated and I know you ladies understand.

    Another question about pumping, when is a good time to start? I tried today after our morning feeding and didn't get very much after 10 minutes. Drops and a few sprays. I have no idea what to expect or how much to expect to get. And if I want to build up a stash, how do I do that? Pump 3-4 times a day? More? Sorry, totally new to all of this.

  6. #6
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    Jun 2012
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    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    And then, lately, she'll give me all the cues that she's done, she'll de-latch, fall asleep, etc.....and then like 15-20 minutes later, she's rooting. She never seems satisfied, for a while there, we could go 2-3 hours, no issues. Lately, it's been every 1-2 hours. I know it's growth spurt time, but how do mommies get through this? I feel like my body is falling apart.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    Oh I get it! The first several weeks are hard! Vent away. I promise it gets easier though!

    Babies sleep longer because formula is hard to digest, which is not very healthy. As exhausting as it is, frequent waking and nearly constant nursing is normal and healthy. Employ whatever help you can get and sleep when your baby sleeps.

    I would wait as long as possible to pump, but since you are going back to work relatively soon I can see why you want to start soon.

    You won't get much at first. That is okay and does not mean anything.

    Right now start with pumping 1x every day at the same time (usually morning yields the most milk). You won't get much at first, but as the days go on you will start to get more. In a couple weeks, if you still feel like you need extra milk then you can add in one more pumping session at a different time (say afternoon - then pump every morning and every afternoon at the same times each day).

    You won't need much milk to go back to work (just enough to cover that first day - 1-1.5 ounces per hour you are away from your baby, then maybe a couple extra 2 ounce bottles). Once you get back to work you will be pumping to replace nursing sessions and it will be much easier to get enough milk for the next day.

    Also, pump every single time you give a bottle of formula.
    K. Sophia - Mama to my little lactivore, the amazing Mr. X (11/10).

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*katwoman24 View Post
    And then, lately, she'll give me all the cues that she's done, she'll de-latch, fall asleep, etc.....and then like 15-20 minutes later, she's rooting. She never seems satisfied, for a while there, we could go 2-3 hours, no issues. Lately, it's been every 1-2 hours. I know it's growth spurt time, but how do mommies get through this? I feel like my body is falling apart.
    Cosleep. I wasn't comfortable putting a baby so tiny in bed with me (although it can be done perfectly safely), so I put my baby's bassinet right up next to my bed. I slept every time he slept. We often stayed in bed (I kept snacks, water, and books on hand, flipped on a movie, or surfed the web in bed) all day long. Nursing, napping, nursing, napping, nursing, napping.

    It started getting better for me after the 6 week growth spurt. You're getting there, just hang in there! It doesn't seem like it now, but it really does pass very quickly. You can do this!
    K. Sophia - Mama to my little lactivore, the amazing Mr. X (11/10).

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Norman, OK
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    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    Thank you so much!! I just had another breakdown, lots of tears, Just had to let her cry it out. Broke my heart. As weird as that may sound.

    I can tell already that this forum will be a lifesaver and mindsaver.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    19,881

    Default Re: Ftm help!!!

    Since you're already offering formula, it makes sense to start pumping now and offer breastmilk bottles instead. That way your milk supply won't fall behind baby's needs.

    When you say you feel like you're falling apart, what does that mean exactly? Do you feel unwell, or simly exhausted? Any other symptoms that you'd care to share? Are you doing anything around the house aside form baby care?
    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!"

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