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Thread: Continuos feeding in evenings for over 4 weeks

  1. #1

    Default Continuos feeding in evenings for over 4 weeks

    Hi ladies,

    I just wanted to start of by saying that I am grateful and happy to be part of llli. Reading the stories on the forum and the advice given has encouraged and gotten me and my baby to where we are today.

    My baby is 9.5 weeks. Was born at 36w4ds and weighed 5lbs10.6oz. We have had our challenges in the start. When he was born he had a great latch but did not suck and so we were in the hospital for 2 days as his weight dropped to 5lbs3oz I think (10% drop in weight) then they introduced formula and I started pumping but was devastated because I wanted to breastfeed.

    Then the hospital told us to attempt breastfeeding for an hr, supplement with formula and then pump. So we went home and started that but 2 days later there was no change so I went to a breastfeeding clinic and they helped us out and noted that I should supplement with my pumped breastmilk as he had reached his birth weight and then work my way to exclusive breastfeeding. After a week and half to two weeks we achieved that goal. The first couple of weeks were rough with very little sleep but we got through them and have been EBF since.

    Starting week 5, he started cluster feeding in the evenings would go from starting anytime between 4:30 pm and end anywhere between 12-2 pm. The thing is he has been doing that ever since so here we are at 9.5 weeks and I feed frequently from 6 pm-12/2am. I am okay with it as he is my only child right now but its hard to get anything done. He also feeds frequently during the day every 1.5-2 hrs max 3 hrs. Is it normal for baby's to feed this long for 4.5 weeks (I am not sure when it will end). It gets tiring when I am feeding for that long of a stretch everyday and my wrists hurt as well as I can only hold him in the cross cradle hold to feed him (have tried other positions but it does not work and the bf clinic told me to stick to this position for a good latch).

    I don't think it is a latch problem as we fixed that at 5 weeks. Also I highly doubt it is a supply problem as I eat oatmeal and fenugreek. Plus when he goes without a feed for 1.5-2 hrs in the day my breasts feel full/leak. My breasts don't feel full between 6 pm-1/2am because he is feeding continuously (however I do feel let downs and sometimes the breast he is not feeding on will leak a little). He has a good number of wet diaper over 8/10 and good number of poops at least 4 a day. He is also gaining weight well. He was 9lbs 2oz at 8 weeks.

    After this long stretch of feeding we used to get a 4 hr stretch of sleep (for some reason he is vey fussy this week so he wakes up more frequently unless I am holding him while he sleeps and keeps chomping on his hand) with a wake around 4-6 dependant on when he is done and then feeds and sleeps another 2-3 hr stretch. I generally have him sleep in a bassinet next to my bed.

    Also I nurse him to sleep even for his naps and when I see that he is asleep I unlatch him rock him and put him down but he wakes up and wants to latch on again. He likes to sleep latched to the breast (even if not sucking or drinking). Does anyone else's baby do this. I am wondering if it is a bad habit that I am encouraging/cultivating because even though he is really tired and full it is hard to rock him to sleep, he will only sleep if latched to the breast.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    569

    Default Re: Continuos feeding in evenings for over 4 weeks

    Mama, it sounds like you are doing great! This is hard work, but you are doing it!

    My daughter was pretty much continuously latched and cluster feeding in the evenings until she was about 15 weeks old. Cluster feeding while in the newborn period is not unusual. I would just find yourself a comfortable place to sit or lay down, set up with lots of drinks and snacks, and just go with it. I asked my husband to bring me pretty much whatever I needed, because I didn't move off of the couch or get out of bed for hours and hours when we were in the thick of the newborn cluster feedings. But baby will eventually become a more efficient nurser, and the nursing sessions will decrease in length over time!

    At no point did my baby ever give me a 4 hour stretch of sleep without nursing. I would consider it a lovely gift of sleep that you had for a bit there! It's not unusual for babies to start waking more frequently and nursing more frequently. Definitely not a sign that anything is wrong!

    Most babies don't really like to be put down. They know that the safest place for them is right on their mom. My daughter never, ever wanted to be put down at that age. And she also slept best when latched on. She took all of her naps held in my arms, latched right on the whole time. You aren't cultivating a bad habit, you're doing a great thing by responding to your baby's needs. So, what I did to maximize sleep for all of us was to bring baby to bed with me and sleep with her. If you'd like to try this, and need some tips for safe bedsharing, let us know!
    Apologies for the short responses! I'm usually responding one-handed on my smartphone!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Continuos feeding in evenings for over 4 weeks

    Thank you sonogirl. It is comforting to know that I am not the only one. There are other babies that were born in the family a little before mine and don't seem to feed as frequently and so in my mother in law makes me feel like I should not be doing it and it is not normal. She keeps telling me to do scheduled feeding every 3 hrs but how do I do scheduled feeding with a baby who feeds every 1.5-2 hrs. I just do on demand and refuse to see my baby cry or wait for a feed. I don't allow her to visit anymore because she always judges me on how much I feed my kid.

    I do have a little nursing station with water, tea/snacks and I got that tip from the forums here and it has been really helpful. I will continue to do what I am doing.

    Thanks I did not realize that babies like to remain latched and sleep. I will just follow his cues and lead.

    My lil one also takes all his naps on me as he wakes up when I put him down and I don't mind in the daytime. I love holding him close to me. Yes I would love some tips on bed sharing.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,307

    Default Re: Continuos feeding in evenings for over 4 weeks

    I sounds like you are doing great. Your baby is still very much a newborn and this is normal. With all respect to you mil, does she eat on an every such and such hour schedule that is controlled by someone else?

    The first thing to know about bedsharing is that in most cultures, (and historically, all cultures) mothers sleeping with their babies is/was the norm and safe. But in cultures where it is no longer the norm, our beds may pose a risk. We also know that it is less safe for baby to share the same sleep surface with any adult who is a smoker or who is not their biological parent, and there is evidence that sharing sleep surface with mom is less safe if mom is not breastfeeding baby. Of course it is not safe if mom is impaired by street drugs, medications or sleep aids that induce sleep or a lack of awareness, or alcohol. So you want to look at the safety tips on bedsharing based on this research - http://cosleeping.nd.edu/safe-co-sleeping-guidelines/

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    111

    Default Re: Continuos feeding in evenings for over 4 weeks

    Just wanted to chime in and give you support! You are doing excellently! I remember someone else's mother coming over and watching me like a hawk while I was feeding my newborn. At one point she said "he just ate!" And I was like, yeah, it's recommended to feed babies on their cues and not on a schedule. Then my know it all friend commented "you'll just confuse him if you keep trying to feed him" and she doesn't even have children!!! Rant over.
    Also remember no phase is permanent. I remember the cluster feeding which lasted until about 4 or 5 months and I just let everything go. There is nothing really that needs to get done, as this time will be over before you know it any you'll never have it back. So enjoy and become skilled in the art of asking for help
    We , , , and with my little monkey, born 9/30/2012.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    California
    Posts
    418

    Default Re: Continuos feeding in evenings for over 4 weeks

    Agree with everyone else--this all sounds like completely normal nursing behavior for a newborn My DS nursed pretty much non-stop until he was around 4-5 months old, can't remember exactly anymore. And he actually sounds like he's sleeping relatively well for such a young one
    First-time mama to Joshua, 10/29/11. 29 months and going strong! for 14 months; now finished with pump weaning!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Continuos feeding in evenings for over 4 weeks

    Thank you lllmeg, exactly we eat when we are hungry and babies are the same . They are smart enough to wake up/ ask to be fed when they need to. But as a first time mom I was doubting myself. I will keep doing what I am doing. Thank you for the link on bed sharing.

    Garsmom, I have heard the same thing haha.. We just had his baptism at 8 weeks and people wanted to carry him but he was feeding most of the time and people kept saying "but he just fed". I just said yeah he is hungry and needs to be fed sorry.

    Thanks for all the support ladies, I appreciate it and will keep going.

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