I am in desperate need of some help. My ds is 4.5 months old and we have been struggling with nursing for 2.5 months now. I'm to the point where I am extremely angry with the whole situation and it's starting to affect my relationship towards him. I am completely miserable. I'll try to make this as short as possible, but want to give the whole picture so please bear with me.
DS was a pretty good nurser for the first two months. We could nurse anywhere and he took both sides. I have OALD and OS and was block feeding for awhile and that seemed to help with some spitting up, gagging and choking. Once ds was about 2 months old everything changed. He now will only nurse in his room, with it quiet, dark, white noise machine on. He has to be asleep to nurse. No matter how hungry he is he will not nurse unless he is practically passed out. He will suck on his paci for a bit for comfort and start to fall asleep, then I pop the paci out and try to get him to latch on. Sometimes he’ll latch right on and we do fine. Most times he’ll suck for a few sucks, then pull off and arch back. It can take up to 30 minutes to get him to latch on and nurse. Many times I have to pull his chin down and shove my breast into his mouth to get him to nurse. I’ve tried putting him in his crib to sleep figuring, fine if you’re not going to nurse, I’m not going to sit here and do this. Then he’ll wake up either when I put him down or shortly thereafter (b/c he’s hungry) and won’t nurse b/c he’s not sleepy after sleeping for 10-20 minutes or however long he slept. Of course, this isn’t enough sleep so his napping is all messed up too. IF I do get him to nurse while sleepy then once he’s done nursing he wakes up when I lay him down to sleep. It’s so frustrating.
I was pumping a bit to store some milk recently and it caused my supply to increase again. My milk (esp on right side) will squirt everywhere, even after let down it seems. When I hand express, it doesn’t matter how much I’ve taken off I still have multiple streams of milk squirting out everywhere. I’m trying to block feed again, but it’s extremely uncomfortable. So I pump a little off before hand which I think is not helping relieve the over supply.
DS is getting to be a bit sleep deprived with our situation. I think that may be why he won’t nurse well at times, b/c he’s so tired. Some days he’ll just get to the point where he’ll flat out refuse to nurse-like last night. He nursed at 5:30 pm, then at 7:30 I tried to nurse again to get ready for him to go to bed. He would not nurse-he latched on, suck, suck and would pull off. He did this for a good 30 minutes before I gave up and put him to bed. I returned 45 min later and tried to nurse him, but he refused. He woke up at 1 am fussing, 4 am and 6 am. All three times he would not nurse, even though he was fussing. This is not normal for him. He usually sleeps through the night, so for him to wake up shows me that he is hungry, but he would not nurse. This morning he woke up at 7 am, refused to nurse (of course, b/c he’s not sleepy). 8 am I started to prep him for his morning nap and he was so fussy and it took almost an hour to get him to latch on and nurse. I also woke up so engorged on the left side (I only offered the right side all night) it was so painful. DS will usually go about 8 hours at night without nursing and I am always so full each morning it hurts and squirts out everywhere.
My three year old had problems like this as well. It was horrible and we never got it resolved. I BF him for 20 months and just dealt with it b/c he was struggling. He has food allergies and was not gaining weight. We were seeing a GI doctor, allergist and nutritionist. I was on a strict elim diet for all those months. With ds#2 I have also eliminated the top 8 allergens and some other foods to see if that helps. We have him on zantac and prevacid to see if that would help as he was showing signs of silent reflux. He has been on these meds for a month now and I've seen some improvement, but not much.
This is completely wearing me down. I am in his nursery for an hour every time I try to nurse him-which is usually about every 2 to 2.5 hours. My three year old is running around the house, watching too much tv and playing on the computer too much. He tells me he misses me every day. I miss him too. I just don’t know what to do.
I am extremely frustrated and feel like I need to do something asap as I am starting to resent my baby. I know I am dealing with some PPD (which didn’t come on until ds was 3 months old and I know it’s partly b/c of my nursing issues). I tried Zoloft much to my dismay (I don’t even take Tylenol for headaches). I only took it one night and the next day I was dry heaving all day, had an upset stomach, felt like I was in a dream, had cotton mouth, etc. I felt horrible and refuse to take that again!
Some other factors that are affecting my life and my stress right now is that dh travels every week. The last three weeks have been really bad as he has only been home on Saturday. My three year old has food allergies still so I have to bake everything from scratch for him (and for me now since I’m back on an elim diet). I am constantly baking. My three year old was just dx with something called Chiari Malformation a couple months ago and is looking at possible brain surgery coming up soon.
Needless to say I’m stressed. I can’t deal with these nursing problems very well anymore. I was originally trying to nurse for a year, then I went to setting a goal to just try to make it to 6 months and now I’m just trying to get through each feeding. It’s pure hell for me and I loathe each session. This is coming from someone who nursed her first until he was almost two.
I’ve called three different LC’s and they have all told me different things. One suggested trying formula to see if he reacts differently to that-that maybe there is still something I’m eating that he doesn’t like. I haven’t tried that yet, b/c for one he won’t take a bottle and two I really wanted to BF and not do formula. Another LC suggested a sling-I haven’t tried that b/c I’ve heard it’s very difficult to nurse in a sling. I’m petite, a bit overweight, have back problems and have a 90% for length baby. I’m not sure I could make it work. The other LC (a LLL LC) rec coming to a meeting. Well, the closest one is 30-40 min away and ds won’t nurse anywhere but his room anyway. I know, I have an excuse for them all, and I truly want to make this work. I just don’t know how.
Please, please, please I need a solution here!! I’m in turmoil and it’s affecting everyone around me. I wish I could just quit right now, but the guilt is what is keeping me going. I shouldn’t be nursing my baby out of guilt!
Oh, one more thing. I'm also concerned about his weight gain. He was doing great for a while, but now is slowing down. With ds#1 he dropped off the charts around 8 months and it was not a good situation at all. I don't want the same thing to repeat itself with ds#2. His weight is:
9.3 2 weeks
12.1 2 mo's
14.7 4 mo's
He's now 4.5 months and has only gained 6 or 7 ounces in the last 2.5 weeks. This is on the same scale, same time of day, naked, etc.
At what point do you decide that maybe you should stop nursing?? My three year old sees me crying almost daily now and I'm short with him, snap at him, yell at him. I get frustrated with my baby and sometimes set him in his crib a bit more rough than I ever would dream of doing. I'm a good Mom and love my children more than anything. But I truly feel like I am failing and just want to run away from the whole situation. My MIL has been helping me for the last three weeks, which has been wonderful as my 3 yo has really loved the loving, nurturing attention she is giving him. So, I have had help which is great, but the nursing situation is not getting any better.