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Thread: Exclusively Pumping - want to switch to BF. Please help!

  1. #1

    Default Exclusively Pumping - want to switch to BF. Please help!

    I am a first time mom to a beautiful five month old baby girl. I planned on breastfeeding her and had not anticipated having any problems doing so. She latched on like a pro in the hospital and was breastfeeding great so I did not ask for any help and assumed we would be fine when I brought her home.

    Two days after we brought her home she started refusing to BF and got extremely upset when I would try to get her latched on. It was a Saturday when we started having problems so when I called the hospital lactation consultant for help all they could tell me was to give her formula to get through the weekend because no one could see me until Monday.

    Well, I was not going to give my newborn formula if I could help it so I went out and bought a pump at walmart and was able to get a good amount of BM for her. She was a different baby when she was finally able to get her tummy full and I was just happy to be able to feed her and not have her so upset. I had never heard of a breast shield or I would have tried that before giving her a bottle. By the time Monday came around and the LC told me to try a breast shield the damage had been done and my baby would not accept anything other than the bottle.

    I spend the entire month crying and trying desperately to get her to nurse while continuing to use my pump to feed her. Some days she would for a few minutes and other days she wouldn't have anything to do with it. After a month of failed attempts to get her to BF I finally gave up.

    Now that she is older I really want to try and teach her to BF. Is it even possible? Has anyone been able to teach an older baby how to BF after having a bottle? I have felt like such a failure over this whole thing. All the women in my family breastfeed their babies and it is almost embarrassing pulling out a bottle for her when I am at family events. Does anyone know of a bottle or nipple that would maybe be helpful for making an easier transition? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,006

    Default Re: Exclusively Pumping - want to switch to BF. Please help!

    It is possible to get an older baby back to the breast- but frankly, at 5 months old it may be difficult. I don't mean to be discouraging- I just feel that I wouldn't be truthful if I said "Yes, you can absolutely do it, no problem!"

    Do as much skin-to-skin contact as possible- it's really helpful! And check out this link: Help - My Baby Won't Nurse!. It has just about everything you need to know about coaxing your baby back to the breast.

    Good luck!!! And good for you for making the commitment to pump- so many moms would have just given up the whole exercise. You should not feel at all embarrassed to pull out a bottle at family events- you are breastfeeding, and you're doing a lot more work than the moms who can nurse their babies directly. You should be proud of what you've accomplished!!!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3

    Default Re: Exclusively Pumping - want to switch to BF. Please help!

    Thank you for your honesty. I know it may not be possible but I am going to do everything I can. That link is very helpful. I have had a very hard time finding any advice online. The only information I had been able to find is for teaching a breastfed baby to take a bottle and not the other way around.

    The one thing that does offer me a little bit of hope is that my baby will not drink out of a normal bottle nipple but has been using the First Years breastflow bottle. It makes her really put her mouth around the nipple and suck as opposed to a regular nipple where the milk comes out really easily. She still may not make the switch but at least it is not as big of a transition as it could be. She actually latched on a little yesterday (without a nipple shield) so I am going to keep at it! Thanks so much for your help.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    1,601

    Default Re: Exclusively Pumping - want to switch to BF. Please help!

    Like Mommal said, it's hard to say what she'll do.
    Would I try? Absolutely.
    If she'll take the breast at all, that's a really good sign. That's really great to hear! Just keep offering and keep it fun and no pressure.

    Good luck mama, and keep us updated!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,006

    Default Re: Exclusively Pumping - want to switch to BF. Please help!

    I know it may not be possible but I am going to do everything I can.
    And we'll be here to support you in any way we can!

    The one thing that does offer me a little bit of hope is that my baby will not drink out of a normal bottle nipple but has been using the First Years breastflow bottle. It makes her really put her mouth around the nipple and suck as opposed to a regular nipple where the milk comes out really easily.
    Good choice! I know someone who was using those bottles for her hard-to-latch baby, and they really looked like the sort of thing that encourages a best-possible latch.

    She actually latched on a little yesterday (without a nipple shield) so I am going to keep at it!
    That's fantastic news! Keep at it, and as bunnyscooltes wisely suggested, "keep it fun and no pressure."
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

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