Hi everyone, I'm new, looking for some help with my six week old daughter.
We had our six week check today and it didn't go so well...
The Health Visitor weighed the baby. She'd only gained 2.5 ounces in a week and HV plotted this on her graph in the red book and started saying baby's growth has "plateaued" and she would prefer her to gain 4-5oz per week (the previous weigh-in last week she had only gained .5oz so that's only 3oz in 2 weeks, although it has been a different set of scales each time. HV suggested I attend a Milk Mates group locally, although I haven't been aware of any issues with the feeding and I am pretty clued up in that area I thought. HV then surprised me massively by suggesting I ought to start expressing my milk and giving it in a bottle every other feed so I can tell how much I am giving her. This is something I had been under the impression was not ideal as it could cause her to go off the breast. Anyway, I was a bit freaked to hear HV say baby might not be doing well so I just nodded along and then she said doctor would check the baby as standard and I should ask him about the weight.
So off I go to see the doctor, head spinning thinking I had no idea there was a problem, is it even a problem etc. It all got worse from there. The doctor checked her over and said all reflexes etc good but when he looked at her red book and list of weights he said he was concerned she is underweight and not gaining properly and announced he "suspects I am not making enough milk", without asking me any questions about the actual feeding mind. This has really upset me to be honest and I've spent most of the rest of the day in tears. She was 6lb15oz at brith, went down to 6lb8oz and is now 7lb11oz at 6 weeks five days. The HV and the doctor both kept telling me about the previous baby at the clinic today who was born ten pounds and is now 15 pounds at 6 weeks and I just kept thinking but how can you compare two such different babies?
I've been talking myself down all night and have pretty much decided it's too soon to start messing with bottles. I am concerned that bottles could be a hygiene risk even with breastmilk in them (or certainly that risk would be another thing for me to worry about even if it's not that big a thing) and I am really worried it would put her off the boob which I don't want. I'm going back next week to have her weighed again but I don't want to get over-obsessed with where she is on a graph, I keep telling myself that she is happy and alert and generally seems fine, she feeds regularly and wets lots of nappies and all this counts for much more than whether she has gained 2.5oz or 4. So I am trying my very best to stay cool and not spin out about this.
Except now every time I feed her I am worrying I'm doing it wrong and every time she cries I'm frightened she might be trying to tell me she is starving slowly I thought low milk supply was very rare, but what if I am the one in a thousand and my baby is suffering because I am too militant about breastfeeding?