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Thread: Lac(k) of support

  1. #21
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    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    Aww CarrieV! Props to you that you were able to go a whole week! I take back my previous advice. If DH is going to stick his nose into your BFing business by bringing a bottle of formula in while you are working with your baby, throw it out and don't have any in the house. If DH buys more, throw that out too.

    If you are having trouble getting him to latch, try switching! Sometimes in the evening, my DD won't latch right away because the milk doesn't come as easily and we end up going back and forth and back and forth until it's at a speed she likes!

    You can do this mama! Keep trying

  2. #22

    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    I understand breast milk is use or lose. I just wish my husband would understand. I guess that's what he gets for blowing off the breast feeding classes I took. He thinks all I have to do is pump to fix the problem. He doesn't understand I need our son to be on the breast to help...

    My husband and I had a big blow out last weekend and he told me he's stressed out with me breast feeding...(IDK why because he's not the one trying to un-do the bottle feeding/nipple preference)...He tells me he supports me in my decision to breast feed but yet he doesn't...He told me he wants me to continue to breast feed but yet gets frustrated when I'm trying to get our son to latch on and he's screaming...I've gone as far as turning off the TV and turning off all the lights except for one little one to try to relax myself and my son and I turn out to be the bad guy...The best part was at our son's next feeding he looked at me asked what I Was going to do. I replied with IDK, I don't wanna stress you out.

    I was at my parent's last night and she have me a thing of formula. I looked at her and said "well I guess I"m not breast feeding anymore, you don't seem to get understand that this is killing my supply" she replied with, "what do you mean you're not breast feeding anymore." and had an upset look on her face. Which I'm not sure why my mom doesn't get it, she breast fed me and my brother....

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*carriev View Post
    The best part was at our son's next feeding he looked at me asked what I Was going to do. I replied with IDK, I don't wanna stress you out.

    I was at my parent's last night and she have me a thing of formula. I looked at her and said "well I guess I"m not breast feeding anymore, you don't seem to get understand that this is killing my supply" she replied with, "what do you mean you're not breast feeding anymore." and had an upset look on her face. Which I'm not sure why my mom doesn't get it, she breast fed me and my brother....
    So all this post does is reinforce your obvious ambivilence. Which is REALLY REALLY frustrating to see. I am really upset that you aren't MORE passionate about providing your milk to your child. Like really? You are not a victim. If YOU choose to quit breastfeeding, you don't get to blame it on your DH or your mother. And the only real victim in that will be your child. You will stop because you don't want to upset your DH? Or because your mother ignorantly gave you a can of formula? That you accepted even though you DO understand that it's causing you to fail? Why if this matters to you, would you even take it? If you do this, it's on you. YOU ARE THE MOTHER. You get to choose. And if you choose not to do the work, you get to own that.
    I can't really figure out WHY you are taking such a casual attitude about putting your child as risk. But if you choose to do the work, in case it's not already clear, the 1st thing you would need to do to get serious is stop accepting formual into your home. After of course you decide that your childs overall health is more important than whether or not your DH is stressed out about a relationship between you and your child. Since I am not really quite sure how he got to have any say about that at all.

    Way too lazy for formula

  4. #24
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    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    I know how difficult the transition to being a mommy can be. You go from being able to flex to accommodate other people's needs and wishes to being in a situation where you must stand firm when necessary to protect your baby.

    I think you need to take your DH aside in a calm, quiet moment, and tell him that his stress is undermining your choice and ability to nurse your child. If the difficulty your baby is having with latching is stressing him out, he needs to find a way to not let it bother him. Perhaps by getting out of the house. Go for a jog. Work in the garage. Drive to the store and buy groceries- but NOT FORMULA.

    This is your moment to embrace your power as a mom. Don't let anyone stand in your way.
    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!"

  5. #25

    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    djs.mom~ I'm sorry I'm trying to do what's best for my son. I am a first time mom. The few women I know that are my age that have kids formula fed their children. My mom's no help. Obviously my husband's no help. Yes he means well and tries to help me out so I can have a mental break yes it sucks that he's giving my son formula. I hardly have any friends that are women. So I can't really talk to my guy friends about breast feeding. If I weren't passionate, I wouldn't be trying to continue and get myself back on track. Also if I weren't passionate, I wouldn't be trying to get help and advice from MOTHERS WHO BREAST FEED THEIR CHILDREN. I get told so many different things that I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO HALF THE TIME. My son's pediatrician tells me one thing, I get told another by friends, I get told another by my doctor, and I read 5 million different things online...

    If I am trying to get back on track and I don't have anymore breast milk stored because we lost power for a day and either my husband used it to feed our son or it went bad. My son's not cooperating enough to stay latched on long enough to allow the breast milk to come back in. How else am I supposed to feed him?? When I try again in a few minutes, he screams bloody murder as if I am torturing him.

    So PLEASE, if I am not passionate enough to be here trying to get help and support from women who breast feed, then maybe I should just give up and be miserable because I failed at trying to provide to my son instead of formula feeding him. And as for my "casual attitude" you don't know me, so there for you don't know I can become VERY nasty when things don't go my way. The last few days or so every time I can't get my son to latch on, I get upset and cry because I feel like I'm FAILING...So PLEASE Tell me I'm not passionate about this.

  6. #26

    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    mommal- I have tried talking calmly to my husband about this and he just keeps telling me that in our child birthing classes we were told to be flexible and have back up plans. I constantly tell him that the bottles and formula need to go away because it's hindering me. He tells me I'm the boss but yet what I say never goes, but it obviously doesn't.

    There have been numerous times I have asked my husband to leave the room so I can feed our son, because our son gets distracted when his father is around. I also feel that when my husband is around it's a trigger to my son that he'll start screaming so he'll get a bottle. Of course then I get frustrated to the point I'm in tears.

  7. #27
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    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    I've been following your thread since it started but haven't commented until now. You sound like you are really struggling and upset, and I can understand that. I think you are getting a fair dose of "tough love" on this thread and I appreciate that can be hard to swallow when you are in the midst of a situation that seems hopeless (to you), unfair, and laden with emotion.

    I can't tell you what to do, and I suspect that more tough love won't convince you to keep going. But, I can share my own experience in the hopes that it will encourage and even empower you. And, please note, this is long and in NO way am I suggesting that I'm awesome or have it harder than you. We all have our challenges. Every last one of us. If we chose to continue, we found our own way to power through it. Many a day has not been pretty for me. I have cried ugly tears, said I was quitting, and cursed anyone around me for taking a breath if I was feeling particularly discouraged.

    My mom didn't breastfeed me or any of my sisters. She does not support me breastfeeding (mostly, I think because me succeeding reinforces her feelings of failure--she's a whole thread on her own!). She constantly makes undermining comments about it and clearly thinks we should be using formula. My two sisters, neither of whom have children, provide me with no end of ridiculous and judgmental comments on all things parenting, including breastfeeding. My husband, who WAS breastfed, TOLD me to quit on numerous occasions and threatened to go buy formula any time I complained that it was hard, exhausting or painful. I have ONE friend who breastfeeds and she just moved, literally, the other side of the world.

    We had loads of problems in the beginning--a 16% weight loss by day 5 that resulted in both of us being hospitalized (and DH was not allowed to be with us beyond visiting hours), a grueling pumping/feeding schedule that gave me 15-30 minutes of sleep every 3 hours and THE nastiest nurse who repeatedly told me how I had basically let my baby starve (this at 5 days postpartum, after a 56 hour labor + emergency c-section, with my parents visiting from another country and in the middle of the holiday season). I had mastitis 4 times and thrush twice. And, a baby who nursed frequently and for long periods of time. Every.single.time feeding changed for us, I was on the phone to our health visitor, or to a LL leader, or on a forum or to the national BF hotline here or all asking if this was normal. My baby would NOT nurse in public no matter what I tried. He would eat only in a dark, quiet room. It was not the BF relationship/experience I imagined or hoped for.

    BUT, he will be 1 year in 2 weeks--he was BF exclusively until 6 months, and primarily since then. Things have turned a major corner for us (around 10 months) and all of us (my husband included) are loving breastfeeding and are planning to continue for the forseeable future.

    So, what changed? A few things:

    1. I ignore my mother and my sisters. I know this is hard. She's your mom. No matter what kind of relationship you have with your parent, it's your parent and it is hard to push back when you feel judged, pressured, or contradicted. I get it (really, I do--I get teary even writing about my mom not giving me unconditional support as a mother). I would like nothing more than my mom to say she is so proud of the hard work I've done BFing, but I have to accept that isn't going to happen. So, take the formula and trash it. Say "no thanks" and change the subject, or just avoid her until things settle down. Whatever you have to do so that YOU can move forward in the way you want. She is your mom, sure, but you are THE mom and you're an adult. You don't need her approval or permission (much as it would be nice).

    2. Work with your husband. As a pp suggested, my husband's threats and encouragement to quit were really because he felt so helpless and out of control. He HATED seeing me in pain, seeing the baby struggle, and not being able to do anything. So, we talked about what he COULD do (take over some chores so that I could feel less stressed, or at least be cool with a messy house; he could walk the baby before or after the feed to help him calm down when needed) and what wasn't so helpful (threats, telling me to quit). It also helped for me to tell him how his comments affected me. Honestly, though, it took a lot of time--for him to see it was working and then he really backed off. You say he keeps talking about back up plans. Does he understand the mechanics/science of BF? (And, curse those classes sometimes--my health visitor told my DH I should stop nursing at night, decrease milk and increase solids during the day--at 7 months! OMG, we had conflict after that because he believed her since "she's the professional."). Talk about that with him as well as the "back up plan"--what are the signs that you need to do something different? (diaper output, maybe) How will you determine when you've hit those markers? Who will you consult? What will you do in those circumstances? Back up plans don't have to be formula (could be one top up of expressed BM/day or something), so what will the plan be?

    3. Find some support. For me, it was my LL meetings and the forum. I don't miss my local meetings and I force myself to participate and interact with people. It is my BF lifeline.

    4. Nurse, nurse, nurse. The things you described in the beginning of your post sound both normal and/or a result of using supplements. babies often nurse like bottomless pits. It doesn't mean you can't provide all LO needs. His nursing more is nature's way of telling your body to make more milk. I know you know that. And, as others have pointed out, when you supplement with formula, you really mess with your body's cue and respond (supply and demand) system. I know you know that too. It sucks though, sitting all day with a nursing baby who is on and off your breast all day (and all night). There really isn't a way around this though. You just have to put the time in and it will get better. He'll move past this growth spurt or phase and will not need to be permanently latched to you. But, in the meantime, if you really want to EBF, you have to just nurse whenever he wants for however long he wants. He may seem unsatisfied but if he is sucking he IS getting something (your body CANNOT run out of milk). Take your supplements and pump if that helps increase your supply and give you peace of mind (I sure needed to do that to ease some anxiety) but don't opt out of a nursing session now (or let anyone commandeer it). When things are more established and you are feeling like you are meeting his needs exclusively, come back and you can get some advice on how you can get a break now and then in a safe way.

    5. Relax. I know when you said you can get nasty if things don't go your own way, you probably meant with your mom and DH and you should advocate for YOUR way (BF that is) but also remember that if you are stressed, your baby picks up on that (and, actually it can impede breastfeeding--there was a woman who told a story about how she had an argument with her husband while she was pumping and they both saw a significant reduction in her output--like nil--as a result of the stress). Find something you can do to relieve some of your stress. Get out for a walk, eat some chocolate, watch a movie, take a bath--do what you have to do.

    6. Let it go. Now, stay with me. Take a deep breath. I REALLY like to be in control. I REALLY like to get my own way. But, guess what? There is a new boss in town. He's little and cute and the light of my world. He doesn't do anything in the way I expect and often not in the ways I want. I used to want an instruction manual but then I realized, I have one--him. He tells me what's going on. Sometimes he wants to nurse for 5 minutes. Sometimes for an hour and 5 minutes. He doesn't really seem to care that this frequent changing, this inconsistency throws me for a loop every tie and causes me no small amount of anxiety. He doesn't seem to get that when he sucks his hands one time and that means he WANTS to feed and then does it again when he DOESN'T, that confuses me. Sometimes I get it wrong--I offer when he doesn't want it and I miss hunger cues. But, he never lets me get away with it--he lets me know when I get it wrong, and when I get it right. It took months for me (remember that horrible nurse--I can still hear her voice), but I stopped timing his feeds, I stopped keeping track of the number of feeds, I stopped trying to estimate how much he was getting, I stopped taking Fenugreek and pumping (except for work), I stopped harassing my husband about wet nappies (okay, that was just last week when someone on here told me I didn't have to anymore!) I STARTED listening to my baby and trusting that he will tell me what he needs and I am competent to respond. Things aren't going to go your way. I'm sorry, but they aren't. I wish they could, but they don't. And, really, that's probably best because your baby knows what he needs and can tell you (and when we push for our way, we might miss that).

    If you want to do this, you CAN. You said you are passionate and I am not going to doubt you on that. So, take that passion and run with it. Don't let anyone (including yourself) get in your way of what you WANT to do and what we KNOW you can do.

  8. #28
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    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*carriev View Post
    If I am trying to get back on track and I don't have anymore breast milk stored because we lost power for a day and either my husband used it to feed our son or it went bad. My son's not cooperating enough to stay latched on long enough to allow the breast milk to come back in. How else am I supposed to feed him?? When I try again in a few minutes, he screams bloody murder as if I am torturing him.
    Lets start here. IMO there should be no "Back on track." You know it's all supply and demand. And you did the work to get all the way back to the breast and then stopped. Babies Fuss. Babies cry. Eventually hungry babies eat. Just like all hungry animals. If you were at the breast completely and you WERE, when a baby fusses at the breast, you stop and try again later. And again. And then if they actually end up striking, you feed them in their sleep.
    What do you do NOW? That you have allowed your supply to undermined by formula AGAIN? A ton of work. AGAIN. Because it's still all supply and demand. So you pump. 10-12 times a day. And you have a nurse in on the weekends. Where you keep the baby skin to skin and only let him at the breast all day long. And YEAH he's going to cry. Because you let him stop doing the work to get his food. So "forgetting" about bottles is going to take a few days.
    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*carriev View Post
    So PLEASE, if I am not passionate enough to be here trying to get help and support from women who breast feed, then maybe I should just give up and be miserable because I failed at trying to provide to my son instead of formula feeding him.
    OK AGAIN, IF YOU CHOOSE to quit, that will be a decision that is ENTIRELY YOURS. It won't be because of your husband, or your mother or ME. You have gotten a ton of support here. Enough support to actually get back to the breast completely. We weren't with you when you made the decision to start supplementing again. So YOU get to decide. But I am certainly not going to give you permission to fail.
    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*carriev View Post
    And as for my "casual attitude" you don't know me, so there for you don't know I can become VERY nasty when things don't go my way. The last few days or so every time I can't get my son to latch on, I get upset and cry because I feel like I'm FAILING...So PLEASE Tell me I'm not passionate about this.
    I don't know you. But I recognize your ambivilence. I see it all the time. I think you need to really ask yourself WHY you started supplementing when you were in fact making all of your childs milk. Start there. Was it too overwhelming for you? Too much of a commitment? Because you have to look at WHY you gave formula to a baby that didn't need it. And if you decide that you do in fact want to do the work to get back to it, hey we are here. But don't blame it on your husband or your mother or anyone else. YOU are the MOTHER. So YOU get to choose how your child is fed. Period.

    Way too lazy for formula

  9. #29
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    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*carriev View Post
    . I get told so many different things that I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO HALF THE TIME. My son's pediatrician tells me one thing, I get told another by friends, I get told another by my doctor, and I read 5 million different things online...
    Can you share what is so confusing? We may be able to explain why a certain approach is likely to work, or why not.

    If I am trying to get back on track and I don't have anymore breast milk stored because we lost power for a day and either my husband used it to feed our son or it went bad. My son's not cooperating enough to stay latched on long enough to allow the breast milk to come back in. How else am I supposed to feed him?? When I try again in a few minutes, he screams bloody murder as if I am torturing him.
    Okay, if baby isn't nursing then you need to pump, using a high-quality pump. Medela Pump in Style or equivalent at a minimum; hospital-grade rental is preferable. I know how very frustrating a non-latching baby is. It requires so much patience and persistence on your part. But the only way to get through latching difficulties is to be persistent, to keep offering, and to limit bottles as much as possible. Has anyone suggested alternate ways of feeding the baby? At-the-breast supplementers like the Medela SNS or the Lact-Aid are good ways to make feeding a little easier for the baby while keeping him nursing. You might also have luck with instant reward techniques, like expressing a little milk onto the nipple surface or dribbling a little milk (or formula, if you're out of expressed milk) onto the nipple before latching baby on. The taste of milk in his mouth may inspire baby to stay latched on longer than he otherwise would.
    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!"

  10. #30
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    Default Re: Lac(k) of support

    Okay, okay everybody calm down! CarrieV, you are already stressed out enough at home, the last thing you need is to get stressed out from the forum - so take a deep breath. We KNOW you are trying to help get your son back on the breast. You just have to realize that everyone's advice was "Ditch the formula", and you seem like you just can't let go of it. I agree with the last few posts that you need to assert yourself as this boy's mother and TELL THEM that the formula needs to go. I don't care if your mother cries because you won't take it from her- THIS IS YOUR BABY BOY!! She'll get over it, and you will NOT regret not having the formula in your life. It sounds like you know some good strategies to help - asking DH to leave the room, or take DS into a quiet and dark room. I know it can be difficult. I like mommal's suggestion to pump when he isn't latching on for w/e reason. I am having a similar issue right now with my DD not wanting to latch and biting me all the time, so I've taken to the pump when she won't eat.

    It's obvious that you want to get your son off the formula, otherwise you wouldn't be here asking how. But just realize that what people are suggesting is usually good advice! It's hard, I know. You just want someone to say "Try X, it will fix your problem and everything will be fine" or "Tell DH or your mom X and they will be more supportive". Then, you want to go and do those things and have them work the first time. Because you are STRUGGLING and are FRUSTRATED and want a solution. That's exactly how a lot of mom's feel when they come here, so give yourself a time out and realize that no one on here is trying to call you a bad mom or saying that you aren't trying. We just understand that things take trial and error and often times you will not get results right away that you are looking for. Like it's been said, your boy has been given bottles, so he's used to a different setup when he eats. But you CAN do this if you keep trying, keep listening and just relax. We are here for you, rest assured that no one is going to leave you high and dry if you are willing to try. Just don't get in your own way
    Last edited by @llli*blueberrysmom; November 19th, 2012 at 03:12 PM.

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