Happy Mothers Breastfed Babies
Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    11

    Default Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    My little man eats about 4 oz every 2 to 3 hrs usually it is every 2 . I have been pumping at work and I only make 3 bottles 2 are 4 oz and a 3 oz this is not enough to leave for him somehow I have been getting 4 bottles if I pump before I go to bed or get up in the middle of the night both are not working well i am exhausted my house is a wreak and he still only sleeps at 2 to 3 hr intervals this has been since he was born I love bf but im tired I have supplemented with formula and he takes it well he is 4 months and im going to go till he is 6 for some reason that seems to be the best benefit for both him and I. I f I made 4 4oz bottles at work I don't think it would be so hard I could deal but when I pump and only get like 2 or 3 oz my heart hurts cause I feel im not going to feed my baby . We just had are 4 month check up and he weighs 17pd and 3 oz so I know he is getting enough .I just feel like my bf days are over I guess I would just like someone to say that its ok you did your best and your baby will be fine sorry so long just conflicted also my husband is pro bf all the way and he makes me feel bad cause I want to quit I know he will support me no matter what I guess I just feel im letting everyone down any advice

  2. #2

    Default Re: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    It is okay and you did your best. You need to do what's right for you and your baby. Formula is not going to kill him. Lots of babies have formula and are just fine. The important thing is that you gave him the best possible start. HOWEVER I had almost the exact same issue a month ago so if you want to continue, some advice: I would consider trying to get him to "reverse cycle." You mentioned that you get 2 four and a three. So that's 11 oz while you are at work. Divide that to four feedings and it is three threes and a two, do the threes early in the day and the two right before you get there. He's going to be hungry when you get there, not starving. He's going to nurse more. That's going to kick your supply up. I also would suggest an early morning pump rather than a middle of the night or late pump- my personal experience, and what I have read, say that you get more first thing in the morning for what ever reason. The other thing you could try to get your supply up is to pump before nursing. Babies do a much better job at emptying your breast than do pumps. When your breast empty it sends a message to your brain to make more. Also what kind of pump are you using? Is it working properly? Would it be possible to take a "nursing vacation" the whole weekend you spend your day relaxing with the baby, pumping and nursing all the time, getting plenty of sleep, skin to skin contact, drinking lots of water. I have never been able to actually do that- too much other stuff going on, but what I have read says that it works well. Finally- you're almost over the hump. He's having a growth spurt and almost ready to start eating real food- if you hang in there it will get better.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,466

    Default Re: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    Don't quit. It doesn't have to be all or nothing. And there is no reason to think that just because you wean that he is going to STTN. Just now he won't be getting the benefits of your milk and you will have to get all the way up to warm bottles. If you don't pump enough during the day fine send 3oz of formula to make it up. But some breastmilk is better than NO breastmilk. You are going to be tired. You have a baby. 2-3 hour intervals is normal. So is a messy house. Have your DH help you on the weekends. Your baby is gaining. You are making milk. Your baby deserves your milk. Keep at it Mama. Combo feeding is a viable option.

    Way too lazy for formula

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Ontario
    Posts
    622

    Default Re: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    4 oz bottles every 2 hours while you're gone sounds like a lot. You might want to look at whether your baby is being overfed while separated from you, thus making it difficult to keep up your pump output. The rule of thumb is 1-1.5 oz for every hour of separation - how long are you gone during the work day? It might be worth trying to leave smaller bottles, like 2 or 3 oz with a 1 oz 'top up' bottle if baby is still hungry. Getting up to pump in the middle of the night does sound exhausting, and maybe if you didn't have to do it, you'd be more encouraged to continue.

    The next question is what kind of pump are you using? Not that 3 oz in a session is all that low (I think), but maybe renting a hospital grade pump would get you more?

    Here's a link to how much expressed milk babies need http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/pumping/milkcalc/

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,147

    Default Re: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    It doesn't have to be all or nothing. If you have to supplement with formula because you're not making enough or to save your sanity, that's fine! Just don't feel like not being able to fill your baby's every need means that you need to quit. I totally understand if you WANT to quit, and if you do, that's okay. It's your personal choice.

    Is your husband helping at night? As Djs.mom pointed out, weaning doesn't mean that your baby is suddenly going to sleep through the night, and you could wind up more tired because of the work involved in making and feeding bottles. Would it work to have your husband give the baby a bottle of expressed milk or formula, allowing you to get more sleep? I always felt that a 5 hour stretch made all the difference to my ability to function!
    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!"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    296

    Default Re: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    I don't think you need to wean if you don't want to. I went back to work at 3 months and pumping got harder and harder for me until about 7 months, and then it started to get easier as I figured out some tricks that helped me increase my supply, and my baby started eating solids and we fell into a predictable routine. So if your goal is to make it to 6 months, I fear you're going to be weaning right before the point where you might feel some relief from the pressure and stress of not pumping "enough" for your baby's bottles. Here are the strategies that helped me make it over this hump:

    1. Renting a hospital-grade pump. I had a tough time keeping up with the bottles the first couple of months I was back to work. Renting the hospital pump helped my pump output significantly. It was expensive and heavy to carry around, so I only rented it for 2 months, but I found that was all I needed; after that I was able to keep it up. So if the cost is an issue, I encourage you to bite the bullet and just do it for one month. You don't have to think of it as an ongoing expense--one or two months might be all it takes. In the long run, it will be a heck of a lot cheaper than formula.

    2. Drinking lots and lots of water and keeping my stress low. I know they say that drinking more water doesn't significantly increase milk output, but I definitely found that if I didn't drink enough or if I was super stressed out, I would pump less. Drinking a lot and really trying to relax both while pumping and in between pumping sessions helped me maximize my output.

    3. Co-sleeping and baby getting older and nursing more easily and sleeping better. When I went back to work, we started co-sleeping which made it so much easier to feed her when she would wake to nurse every couple of hours and still function during the day. As others have mentioned, I was SO happy I had stuck with breastfeeding at that point because around that point I figured out how to pretty much latch her on while we were both half-asleep and we would both just go back to sleep in a matter of a few seconds. So much less disruptive to your sleep than getting up an making a bottle!! (As others have pointed out). And then over the following few months, she started to sleep longer and longer stretches and sleep got better and better for me. This is not forever. It changes fast. You just have to push through. I know you're exhausted and your house is a mess, and it's of course fine to seek solutions to those problems, but remember that it is also so temporary and if you give it time, it will work out on its own.

    4. Talking to my daycare provider about feeding appropriate amounts. We have an amazing daycare but the fact is that most daycare providers are more familiar with formula-fed babies than with breastfed babies. I literally printed out the info on this page: http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/pumping/milkcalc/ (especially check the table at the bottom) and brought it to them. I was nervous about it because I didn't want to tell them how to do their job, but I presented it like "wow, I have been reading about this, and I didn't know it but apparently according to all this research she only needs X oz in the Y hours she's here!". And I just left that print out in her cubby for a while and I think it helped. I also nursed in the daycare room at drop-off so they could see that she just ate and would not offer her a bottle right after she arrived, and made sure they knew when I would be returning each day and knew not to give a bottle within 2 hours of that time. I explained that my breasts would be hurting like crazy if I showed up at the end of the day and she refused to nurse and they were sympathetic to that.

    5. Pumping while driving. I got a hands-free pumping bra and a car adapter for my pump. I would nurse baby in the morning, then pump on my 30 minute commute to work, then pump each time she got a bottle during the day. Then when I picked her up from daycare I would nurse and then pump right after nursing on the commute home. This got me a FULL HOUR of pumping for free. It was cumbersome and annoying, yes, but again, I didn't need to do it forever, just for those few weeks while I was really working on my supply. But it was nice to know I could carve out that time easily enough again if I ever needed to.

    6. Pumping at bedtime. It sounds like you're already doing this, but what made a big difference for me was when my baby was 5 or so months old, she started going to bed at a more regular time, and with co-sleeping and side-lying nursing at night, I was finally starting to feel rested and like I could stay up past 8 pm. So I would put baby to bed, get ready for the next day and do a 10 minute clean up of the house and then take a nice long shower, make myself a bowl of ice cream and put my feet up and turn on the pump. And my deal with my husband was whenever I was pumping, I got to control the TV! So we would watch 30 minutes or an hour of TV and I would pump the whole time with the hospital pump. Once again, I didn't have to do this forever, but it made a HUGE difference for me. And it actually felt like a treat and a chance to relax at the end of the day. And you can forget about the calories in the ice cream because they are cancelled out by the milk you're producing

    You are SO close!! You can do this! And if you need to make up the difference with a few oz of formula per day, that's OK. If you're still breastfeeding on demand when you're together and pumping most of his bottles, he is still getting all benefits of breastfeeding. If you wean completely, he won't get any of them. Most of us have had some issue with breastfeeding or other (that's why we're here, for the most part) and MANY of us have had to supplement with formula, either temporarily or longer-term. It doesn't mean you can't feed your baby--quite the opposite, it means that you're being resourceful and using all of the tools you have available to you to feed your baby.

    Hang in there! You are doing great!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    Thank you all soooo much! I think Im just having bf blues .

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    296

    Default Re: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    So normal!! Especially at this stage and especially when you're working and pumping. It is really hard. I have a 13 month old and I recently pump weaned and nursing and working without pumping is absolutely wonderful. It makes me so glad we stuck with it. Hang in there. I don't think you'll regret it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Salt Lake City
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: Sad but need to wean at 6 months

    If, for you, the benefits of weaning outweigh everything else, then you need to do what is best for yourself. Getting to this point is a huge accomplishment. If this is mostly about supplementing, then I would love to share my situation because I want people to know that supplementing is okay and can coexist with a very healthy nursing relationship.

    I never found the time or energy to pump for the freezer before going back to work. I was nursing a baby, sometimes both, almost constantly from weeks 5-10. I went back to work when they were 10 weeks because I was bed rested in the third trimester. I pump twice a day and my babies get one bottle of formula a day. They nurse happily when I am home and a couple of times during the night and I take home four bottles each day.

    Sometimes I feel guilty that I didn't pump before coming back or that I can't pump enough during the day. A lot of people say that one bottle is the step toward weaning, but I want to breastfeed for several more years! I know that a diet of mostly breast milk is still extremely healthy and I enjoy the breastfeeding so much. So, supplementing is totally okay and normal in a modern society!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •