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Thread: small baby and dealing with criticism

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    19

    Default small baby and dealing with criticism

    My LO is 4 1/2 mos. but weighed 10 lbs, 6oz today at the drs. I didn't go to the appt b/c this was my first week back to work, I'm a teacher. My LO was 7 14 at birth, dropped to 7 3, and has been gaining consistently since then, although very little. She is an extremely active baby, continuously on the move, and can already roll over, make swimming motions, is trying to sit up, grapping everything, smiling, looking all around.

    Apparently the dr says she's doing great on all her developmental milestones, but is beginning to get worried about her weight gain. He hasn't yet said anything about supplementing but wants us to make sure she takes in a minimum of 20 oz and come back in a month. If there is not sufficient weight gain, he will then run tests.

    My problem is my DH and MIL. First of all my Latina MIL wants to start giving solids (which was hesitantly okayed by the dr). I'm against that for at least a month. Also, b/c you cannot tell how much milk a baby gets at the breast, they want me to exclusively pump and give bottles. I've been back at work and have already dipped into my freezer stash! I've told both of them that I can't get enough by pumping (I can get 2 oz each side first thing in the morning, but after that it's about 1 or 1.5 oz). When I said that I got looks that meant that I obviously don't have enough milk. I will pump more, for example pump one side while my DD eats on the other (something I need to do anyway as my freezer stash is half gone, DH put half of it in the fridge today while I was at work!).

    Granted, I'm tired from going back to work and not getting enough sleep, but right now I just want to cry! I was getting pretty good support with breast feeding from my DH at least, but now he's not listening to me and is obsessed with counting each ounce our DD eats. Any advice?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    The pump is definitely not an indication of how much milk you are producing, since your baby is much better at emptying your breast than a machine. It sounds like you probably know this, but your DH and MIL need to be informed. it will probably hurt your supply to stop nursing and go to exclusive bfing, not to mention the hassle and extra work it will mean for you.

    The best way to tell that she is getting enough is to go by wet and dirty diapers. If your DH wants to get obsessive about it, you could buy a sensitive scale and try weighing dd after nursing session, though honestly I think it would just stress you out more. If your daughter is fine on milestones and seems to be having plenty of wet and dirty diapers she is probably fine. My daughter has also always been very very active and is on the small side- right around 5th percentile in weight ever since she was a month old. My doctor has never been concerned. Some babies are just small.

    Do you still nurse at night? I know when I first went back to work, my dd started nursing very frequently at night and that, I think saved our breastfeeding relationship. It meant some adjustments for dh and I- cosleeping became a necessity- but we got through it and I'm still bfing my daughter at 22 months.
    “We are not put on earth for ourselves, but are placed here for each other. If you are there always for others, then in time of need, someone will be there for you.”
    --Anonymous

  3. #3

    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    2 suggestions for you:

    #1. A better way to tell how much your baby is getting per feeding would be to rent a hospital grade scale (med. supply places can probably help you with this) and weigh the baby before and after feeding. The difference in weight will tell you how many ounces baby is taking in per feeding, and the total per day will give you a good idea of what baby takes in all day. Some feedings may be more or less throughout the day...depending on how hungry baby is. But you don't have to weigh her every time...that would probably just stress you out.

    #2. Don't do the solids yet. I didn't know this when I first started having babies, but I found out later on that breastmilk has more calories and good fats than any other baby food. In the situation you describe, where someone is pushing you to start solids too early, you'd be replacing breastmilk with solids, which could have a negative backlash on baby's weight gain...less calories and nutrition overall.

    Try to wait until 6 mos. or so, and then always nurse first before doing solid food meals until at least 12 mos. so baby gets enough calories and nutrition. Solids should be complementary to breastmilk until 12 mos., not the other way around.

    Check out this resource with calorie content for common baby and toddler foods: http://www.kellymom.com/nutrition/vi...dcalories.html human milk/breastmilk is at the top of the list, and you can see right away that everything else is inferior to that.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Surprise, AZ
    Posts
    3,026

    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    Just because you can't pump much doesn't mean you don't have enough milk. Babies are more efficient @ getting the milk out. I think if you were to stop breastfeeding now it could hurt your BFing relationship with your daughter! Maybe whoever watches her while you're at work can keep track of what she's eating then & you can nurse when you're with her? Don't get too stressed out, some babies are just small.
    Steff, proud mom to:
    Ian (6) born naturally
    breastfed from 7/3/06 to 6/16/08
    &
    Erin (4) born naturally (with Hypnobirthing)
    breastfed from 5/18/08 to around 5/18/10
    &
    Seamus (3), my allergy baby, born naturally (with slacker Hypnobirthing) breastfed from 12/28/09 to 8/20/11
    &
    Connor (1) breastfed from 12/28/11 to current



    Ian's age ticker Erin's age ticker Seamus' age ticker
    Connor's age ticker


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    This is hard. I think I remember from another post that MIL watches LO during the day? If so then I'd bet she's gonna give solids whether you like it or not.

    The key here is that LO is your child not MIL, you may have to get very forceful and she'll probably get pissed at you, but oh well!!! Be firm, no solids yet and BF is enough. I'd get a second opinion from another doc if need be and never let MIL go to the doc with us.

    Good Luck!
    Mommy to Maxwell 10-9-07 weaned with love (a party and a remote control monster truck) on his 4th birthday
    My Boy 3-16-10
    And my sweet pea Sam 2-12-11

    Watch Your Language

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK
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    125

    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    I agree with what everyone else has said. and i know EXACTLY how you feel about the criticism. my husbands dad and grandpa freak out about how small my son is. they say he is "malnourished." he weighs 15.4 lbs and is 8 1/2 months old. we are constantly dealing with crap from them... its really hard and i know what youre going through. just keep bfing as much as you can... and try to wait till 6 months for solids if thats what you want to do. i waited and im so glad i did
    I'm Jamie, and im Proud to be:
    Carter's SAHM since 11-27-07 and now to Eli too, since 7-25-11
    Cody's Wife since 8-28-08

    and and

    my healthy boys don't get vaccines



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Maryland
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    2,552

    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*cartersmommy View Post
    I agree with what everyone else has said. and i know EXACTLY how you feel about the criticism. my husbands dad and grandpa freak out about how small my son is. they say he is "malnourished." he weighs 15.4 lbs and is 8 1/2 months old. we are constantly dealing with crap from them... its really hard and i know what youre going through. just keep bfing as much as you can... and try to wait till 6 months for solids if thats what you want to do. i waited and im so glad i did
    The "small" baby thing always bothers me. Formula-fed babies are artificially chubbier, breastfed babies are the perfect size! My son is on the small side (but still on the charts) but he's very healthy.
    Beth

    Exclusively pumped for Lance Oct 07
    Nursed until just before he turned 3 Levi Oct 09

    Do you have extra milk? Consider donating!
    http://www.hmbana.org/:

    "So I was welcomed by the consolations of human milk; but it was not my mother or my nurses who made any decision to fill their breasts, but you who through them gave me infant food, in accordance with your ordinance and the riches which are distributed deep in the natural order." -St Augustine

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    99

    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    Just to add one thing to all the other great posts here - make sure that the pump you're using is adequate for the amount of pumping you're doing. Many single pumps are only meant to be used occasionally and don't cycle frequently enough to maintain your milk supply if used too often. If you're pumping daily you need a good electric pump, preferably a double.

    You're doing great, keep up the good work!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    19

    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    Thanks everyone, it helps so much to have this support here!

    I told my DH how upset I was about all this, and so he's more low key now. He was going to give a couple of bottles tonight but I wouldn't let him. It was sort of cute, while I was bfing he was leaning over both of us and saying to our DD "eat up lots and gain lots of weight" and things like that in a sing songy voice.

    The scale is a good idea, I did think of that as a possibility and we'll probably look into it. I'm using a Medela PISA, so I'm set for the pump. But I only want DD getting bottles while I'm at work. It is so nice to cuddle up with her when I'm home and nurse.

    As for my MIL, I keep telling her all the research. She must feel that I'm always quoting books and websites to her. But until she realizes how much this means to me, she'll have to keep hearing it. She is currently babysitting at our place, and is dependent on us for transportation, so I'm not too worried about her sneaking food to my LO.

    I know my LO is fine, I just wish everyone else would listen to my intuition!
    Thanks!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    174

    Default Re: small baby and dealing with criticism

    No pumping advice just wanted to send

    Some babies are big, some are small, some are average. best indicator is weight gain (even if it's small) and good amount of wet diapers. I cannot imagine the stress of having to pump for the sole purpose of measuring the amount of milk LO is drinking. (realize you are also pumping because you went back to work already)

    Trust in your body that it will make enough milk for your LO.

    Watch for your LO to follow a certain growth curve. Even if she's 5th %-ile and stays on that curve then there is nothing wrong with that. It is when they start dropping curves every visit that people get concerned.

    Good luck.
    2005 2008

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