Re: Won't empty my breasts, so sore and frustrated!
Welcome to he forum and congratulations on the brand-new baby! I can totally understand your frustration, but please don't let it overwhelm you. What you're going through is very common and usually very temporary. Most moms start out making too much milk for a very good reason: the more milk you have, the easier it is for the baby to get a meal while he masters the tricky art of nursing. To solve the problem of overproduction, all that is usually required is for a mom to feed on demand. After a while, your body should detect the fact that your baby isn't emptying the breast and cut back on the extra milk it is making. Eventually, your supply should reach the point where you make just the right amount, and the baby will be able to maintain production at that perfect level by simply feeding on demand.
Your baby is gaining adequate weight and having plenty of wet/poopy diapers, then you know he's getting plenty to eat. That is true even if he feeds very quickly- when a mom is overproducing and the milk is consequently coming out very rapidly, it's very common for babies to get full meals in just 5-10 minutes. Overproduction also means that your baby may not always need both breasts at a feeding, because he gets enough milk from the first breast to meet his needs. Instead of aiming for X number of minutes per breast, try this approach: allow baby to finish the first breast at his own pace, and then offer the second as dessert. Don't stress if he doesn't take the second breast; just offer it first the next time he wants to nurse. That will help production stay even on both sides.
Leave the pump in the box for now. As long as your baby is gaining enough weight and having sufficient diapers, you don't need it. And pumping is a great way to perpetuate an oversupply situation, and you don't want that. A lot of new moms are concerned about losing supply, but believe me when I say that pumping yourself into a robust oversupply is almost equally troublesome!
What mostly concerns me from your post is the cracks and the flat nipples. I'd love for you to get some hands-on professional help from a lactation consultant, preferably an IBCLC. Help with positioning might save you a lot of pain. Until then, check out this link on reverse pressure softening: http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/moth...oft_cotterman/
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