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Thread: Nursing Strike

  1. #1

    Default Nursing Strike

    Hello, this is the first time I've used the forum... I am on Day 14 of a nursing strike with my eight month old. I also have a three and a half year old at home. The nursing strike started when my LO bit me and I yelled out. I am trying baths, skin to skin and hired a mega pump and am expressing x4 per day. I am so upset because he wasn't ready to stop BF. He is now trying to feed from anyone and everyone and has become very clingy to me. We have progressed from screaming if I even took him into the room we usually feed in, to now when I have been able to do a couple of dream feeds by swapping from bottle to breast. He had never had a bottle until last week but I tried everything I could think of and in the end the bottle/breast swap seemed the last thing to try. I also can't express until he's asleep. He gets very upset... I think he can smell the milk. But I can't get him to sleep without a feed (usually BF but now bottle with swap to breast). So getting very very little sleep. Now I think he may be more interested in the bottle and I'm going to try nipple shields. Struggling so much. Feeling very very sad and no support. Everyone I know thinks I should just wean him. I'd just like to hear from anyone else who's been in this position as i need some moral support in order to keep going....

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: Nursing Strike

    Nursing strikes are really tough-it does sound as if you are making progress. I doubt he is "preferring" bottles, given the way and when they were introduced- I think strikes confuse babies as much as they confuse moms. It's worth it to try shields, as they are not expensive and it does appear that some babies grow used to the feel of silicone as opposed to flesh, but my first guess is that whatever is going on is not about the bottle.

    I also can't express until he's asleep. He gets very upset... I think he can smell the milk.
    The sound of the pump may be upsetting. or just the fact that some...thing... is where he wants to be if you know what I mean! But if you think it is the smell, I wonder if he would nurse on one side while you pumped the other?

    Also remember the many other possible causes of strikes just in case those might be going on too-illness, teething, mom changing soap, perfume, lotion etc, stress or any major life change, too rapid weaning/meal scheduling. Sometimes its something you would not even think of.

    Here are some articles you may not have seen. Hang in there!

    this FAQ also links to a resource page with many strike stories: http://www.llli.org/faq/strike.html

    help my baby won't nurse! http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/child/back-to-breast/

  3. #3

    Default Re: Nursing Strike

    Just wanted to update that I tried nipple shields today but after about a minute he got very upset and began looking for the bottle. I managed a mini dream feed when putting him to bed tonight (swapping from bottle to breast) and he did ok but then woke up and cried almost when he realised it was me not the bottle. He actually roots for the bottle. Just don't know how to keep going. Am going to try cutting my expressing from x4 to x3 so that I can still spend time with my oldest. Feel like giving up and then somehow just carry on for another day.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Nursing Strike

    Keep on keep in' on, mama! It's great that you got your LO to latch on at night- that is progress, and if you can keep doing it... Who knows?!

    I really encourage you to keep the 4th session, somehow. The average 8 month old is probably nursing 8 times a day, or thereabouts. If you want to keep your milk production going at a level that is more equivalent to your baby's needs, you really do want to aim for more sessions rather than fewer.

    Sorry, I know I am recommending more work when you are already swamped...

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