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Thread: Frequency and duration

  1. #1
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    Jan 2007
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    Default Frequency and Duration

    I'm a new mom of a 6 wk old baby boy and have recently become exhausted by differing advice from family. My baby eats every 30min-1.5hrs and is usually on the breast 7-10 min. at a time. I've become sick from the exhaustion and my family sees that. I'm beeing told to introduce rice cereal now even though I know you arent supposed to until 3-4 mos. My mom has already conviced me to supplement with formula at night time. As this does give me 4-4.5 hrs of sleep I feel guilty that it's the easy way out. Please help.

  2. #2
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    Dec 2006
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    Default Re: Frequency and Duration

    Logans mom, I've been in your same shoes. Your baby boy will outgrow his frequent feedings. Give him a few more weeks. What I did was to feed him of one breast to make sure he got the hindmilk which is higher in fat content. I was hoping that the fat content would keep him satisfied and he would feed less frequent. I also would feed him laying down so I could sleep while he was nursing. When you get comftorble with nursing laying down, I'd recommend to discontinue the formula feeding because it will decrease your milk supply. Well I hope this help. Hang in there, this too shall pass.

  3. #3
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    Mar 2006
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    Default Re: Frequency and Duration

    Quote Originally Posted by Logans mom View Post
    I'm a new mom of a 6 wk old baby boy and have recently become exhausted by differing advice from family. My baby eats every 30min-1.5hrs and is usually on the breast 7-10 min. at a time. I've become sick from the exhaustion and my family sees that. I'm beeing told to introduce rice cereal now even though I know you arent supposed to until 3-4 mos. My mom has already conviced me to supplement with formula at night time. As this does give me 4-4.5 hrs of sleep I feel guilty that it's the easy way out. Please help.
    My first baby was like you describe. Always eating. But this is PERFECTLY NORMAL for your baby's age!!!

    It will take a few more weeks to slow down. The other things that truly helped me was to learn to side-lying nurse (I laid down with the baby and nursed him to sleep and then frequently napped myself) and to go to cosleeping at night and nurse while I slept. After I started doing that, I felt like a new person!

    Each child is different, and my experience with introducing solids was not what most people say will happen. My mom swore by it and tried very hard to get me to give the baby some rice cereal in a bottle (a HUGE NO-NO), but even when we started solids with baby #1, he would not sleep through or even extend his times between nursings. So it might not work, and your family should not be pressuring you, particularly with a six week old baby.

    The problem with giving any formula is that your supply may still be in the process of getting established. Supplementing tells your body that it doesn't need to make as much, and you may head down a slippery slope. That may not be true for you, but I have seen that with a couple moms I know recently . . . one bottle turned into two, and before they knew it, they had to use formula 100%.

    FYI, solids should be started somewhere around the middle of the first year; at four months, most are not quite ready yet: www.llli.org/FAQ/solids.html. Many of us on here do baby-led solids introduction, and there's lots of good links on the solids forum about that.

    Stay strong, do some reading in the FAQs on the LLL website, visit an LLL meeting and hang out here. . . We'll give you lots of support!

    Things change fast at this age . . . Hang in there. The first three months are hard!
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  4. #4
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    Dec 2006
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    38

    Default Re: 8-12 feedings a day?

    Logans Mom-

    Can you find a friend or a family member that is supportive of your breastfeeding? If you can, try to see if s/he could come over some days and watch baby in between feedings. When I was recovering from my c-section and breastfeeding a hungry baby, just having people around to watch baby while I tried to get a few z's was very helpful. When you do nap, try to sleep somewhere where you can't hear baby if possible. And, if that person is supportive of your breastfeeding, you can trust them to not try and go against your wishes while you're sleeping.

    Best of luck. I've heard that the first 6-8 weeks seem to be the most difficult.

    Millie

  5. #5
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    Pazygozo is offline Shares Widely And Frequently
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    Default Re: Frequency and duration

    My little guy had the exact same eating pattern as yours. Just a few minutes at a time and rather often. Yep, it's exhausting! I didn't get the hang of side-laying nursing until he was about 5 months, so I just spent a lot of time in my nursing chair. During his growth spurt times, like 6 weeks, or when I was worried my supply was dropping, I would give the two of us "nurse-in" days, and just acknowledge that we would spend the entire day or two in the chair. I got some good books, water and snackies, he'd nurse and then fall asleep on my lap on the boppy, and I was able to just rest. Everything else in the house just had to go by the wayside. Oh well.

    Seriously though, it will get better and better. You're at a demanding stage, and as your little one matures and you both get more used to things, it will get a lot easier. Take any time you can to rest during the day, even if you can't sleep. I didn't keep up very well with the idea of "nap when the baby naps", and I sure wish I did! Those things that seemed so important to do while I had "free time" were not nearly as vital as I thought they were. You'll be able to sleep in longer bouts before you know it. Those few months were kindof a haze, and it will pass.

    Here is a final thought. Motherhood (and life for that matter) is difficult enough without guilt. Now, sometimes, guilt, like pain, is an indicator that something is wrong that needs fixing. But more often, it's that we're trying to live up to someone else's expectations or even our own unidentified or unreasonable ideals or maybe we're being manipulated or who knows. The thing is, if it's not the kind of guilt that indicates a real problem, it's NOT HELPFUL! Get rid of it. Ignore it. Have confidence in yourself, your mothering instincts, and your parenting choices. When you feel it coming say, "No thank you. I choose not to be guilty about this. Bye-bye."

    That said, let me add that I have had much more confidence in my mothering choices when I have done some research and been able to reflect on my own feelings. Like other posters have said, it is very possible that a bottle can interfere with your supply. I recommend looking up the excellent FAQs on this site and others (kellymom.com is really good), and think about what you really want in your breastfeeding relationship, and then making a careful decision about bottles. Some extra work now to build up your supply may be worth it in the long run. I had to go back to school when DS was 2 weeks old, and he's had on average a bottle a day his whole little life. While that has allowed me to do what was necessary for us, it has certainly added more work in the form of pumping, washing bottles, buying formula, washing bottles, dealing with a bit of nipple confusion, washing bottles, etc.

    I guess I have several "last thoughts" Hehe. There are a LOT of things in life that I take the "easy way out". I have a washing machine instead of scrubbing my clothes in the river. I use canned food. I look things up in search engines on the internet instead of getting dressed and going to the library. Sometimes I leave the dishes in the sink while I take a nap. Would my great-grandmother be shocked? Probably. Would she judge me for "taking the easy way out" when my lifestyle is simple less labor intensive than hers? Probably not. I hope not, anyway. Life is hard. Motherhood is demanding. I choose not to make it more difficult than necessary. If you're worried about the "easy way out" I would say, ask yourself whose opinion of easy/hard you're worried about. Be nice to yourself, you and your baby are both going to need you later!

    You're doing great Mama! Hang in there!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    47

    Default Re: Frequency and duration

    What you're describing is normal. As your baby gets older he will go longer between feedings ... and eventually you'll forget all about this. It is exhausting... is there someone you can have watch your baby for a little while in between feedings? This helped me a lot when my son was that age.

    Talk to your doctor about introducing cereal before you do. They recommend no solid foods until 4-6 months.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    1,512

    Default Re: Frequency and duration

    My LO is 4 months tomorrow and I remember back to those early rough weeks! Hugs to you It will get better! Many moms on these boards recommended the side laying and nursing when I was having that same problem around 6 weeks. We just recently figured out (with lots of practice attempts) how to side nurse. It is worth the practice!!
    Samantha: born 3 1/2 weeks early on Sept 2006 6lbs 4 oz 18 inches long with situs inversus totalis. Now a strong healthy little girl that wants to be a NICU doctor, loves her little sister and breastfeeds her dolls!
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 2,200 oz
    Alexandra: born 3 weeks early on July 2010 7lbs 8 oz 19.5 inches long.
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 1,200


    For information on becoming a Breastmilk Donor http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk

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