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Thread: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Default Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    Hello!
    My dd self weaned beautifully at 21 months (even though I wasn't ready, she was). She gradually decreased her daily nursings over a period of 6 months or so. The last time she nursed was to be exact Saturday October 7 at around 12:00p.m. (but, who's keeping track?!) It's been 10 whole days! She seems to be adapting rather well (although her thumb is getting quite a work out). However, I am not. since she decreased to one nursing a day (about 2 months ago), my hormones have gone crazy.

    I get frequent migraines, moderate to severe acne, loose or gain 5 to 10 lbs. at a week's time, my last period was 1 & 1/2 weeks late and went through a short lived (about 3 weeks) depression compounded by also feeling quite lethargic. I went to the Dr. and had everything checked (diabetes, pregnancy, thyroid, etc...) all came back negative. Dr. suggested that it's my hormones due to dd's weaning. She said it will be some time before I'm back to normal.

    Please, if you have gone through this or know about this, I need support and advice!!!
    I have asked other bf mothers and they did not experience any of my symptoms.
    Any help will be greatly appreciated by dh and myself!

    knmama

  2. #2

    Default Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    I don't have any answers for you but I noticed you hadn't gotten a reply yet so I thought I'd bump this up! Hang in there, mama!
    Mother to Emily June, b. Sept 18, 2005 and Lucy Quinn, b. 1/20/2012

    “Buy the ticket, take the ride."
    Hunter S. Thompson

    Excitement on the Side: Who doesn't love a confident woman with long boobs...

  3. #3
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    Mar 2006
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    Default Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    Hm.. my 2.5 year old plans to nurse until college, but she's cutting WAY back right now and I've been getting headaches again. I haven't gotten them since before I got pregnant. I never made the connection before.

    I have no advice either... I know that most of my hormonally influenced discomforts (moodiness, cramps, etc) are helped by regular excercise, but that's all I've got for you.

    But I can read about how you're feeling, so keep posting.

    Julie

  4. #4
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    Oct 2006
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    Smile Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    Thank you both... It's nice to know that there are others I can share with.
    LLL was very instrumental in the success that I had bf dd N. However, friends and family members (with the exception of my wonderful, supportive dh) are not what I would call very open to extended bf (they think bf past a baby's 3rd month of life and or exclusively bf are just crazy). So, this might be the perfect place for me to gush, rave and express my gratitude over what I feel has been a life changing milestone in my life... My dd N may never remember our countless bf sessions but, I will never forget them.

    When I gave birth to my beautiful baby boy K at the age of 23, I assumed that I would bf for a year. After all, it was nature, my body was made to nourish him. I had no support... When I mentioned LLL to my mother in-law (now ex), she said that LLL was like a cult. I never went. I didn't know that he latched on wrong, I was told by family that bf was supposed to hurt, that was the reason we had formula. On his 4th day of life the hospital called and said that we needed to take ds K to the hospital 1st thing in the a.m. the next day, because, he had PKU (a genetic disorder in which the body does not break down protein, causing severe brain damage to untreated patients). The hospital said that although breastmilk is high in protein he would be allowed to have 3 oz of breastmilk mixed in with his PKU formula. I started to pump... But, that hurt too much, my milk was coming out pink due to the blood coming from the blisters and horrible cracks on my nipples. I gave up.

    I did however, bottle-feed him with all the love I could muster. He is now a gorgeous 11 year old who made honor roll this past quarter. He is on a strict low protein diet and has his protein levels checked monthly. He is sensitive and loving. He is perfect (don't let him know that since, his pre-teen hormones have kicked in, he does try to push my buttons!).

    My sweet dd N was born 10 years after her brother. This time with confidence and more books than I can count, I decided to bf. This time I started attending LLL meetings (a few months prior to her birth). WOW! This was no cult!!! This was a beautiful, diverse group of loving, nurturing, kind women who decided to put their families 1st.

    With their help and my #1 bf fan (dh), dd N and I embarked in our journey. She was very highneeds from the 1st day of life... If my (new) mother in law hadn't been here to help us, my dh and I would have starved! Thanks to a timely article by Dr. Sears my dh and I let go of expectations and decided to come up with coping skills and to let dd N tell us what she needed, our jod afterall was to fullfill her needs.

    We went through colic (That's when we all gave up milk), every hour nursings, over-active let-downs (That's when dd decided to scream everytime she came close to my right breast), bf all evenings (from 4:30 p.m. till 10 p.m.) because she rejected bottles while I was away from her at work, she would only nurse when everything was calm and quiet (That meant no bf outside of the house, and at times only her bedroom would do), sore nipples (forgetting that you have on, hard shells/hobbits under your clothes because you can't stand anything touching them and then hugging a family member who stares at your chest blankly, can be pretty embarrassing!) and no sleep (while I worked full time and dh worked at night and went to school full time). Dh took care of dd during the day for almost a year... He realized how important it was for one of us to stay at home with her, so shortly after his graduation, I made arrangements to work from home some hours and care for another child in my home as a means to be able to afford staying at home with dd.
    It sounds like bf it was hell, but, it wasn't. Why did our bf relationship persevere even through the hardests of times, even when her Dr. suggested using formula (she's very petite, but, so is dh and me)?! Because... My heart melted everytime I felt her soft breath on my chest, she would look up at me and smile never letting go of my nipple, whenever she was sick bf always made it better (even the time her tiny frame lost much needed weight due to a bad stomach bug, and she would not touch food, nursing made her healthy again), my dh talks to anyone pregnant, or with kids about the joys and benefits of bf, the way every night till dd was about 18 mnths, dh so lovingly brought dd to bed w/ us many times in the middle of the night so that I could nurse her, the way dh would look at dd and me while nursing, and finally but not least because, it was nature, and my body was made to nourish her!

    This Saturday it will be 2 weeks since she last nursed, it makes me sad, but, most of all it makes me proud. It makes me proud that I learned that it's not only up to me to make this work. It took my dd, dh, ds (who one night shortly after dd birth told me how lucky N was that she was not born with PKU and could bf and eat whatever she wanted and how often during dd's colic he would suggest that I should bf her because that made her happy), LLL, LLLwebsite, great co-workers (who didn't mind the wooshing sound coming out of our office closet while I pumped) and me! I feel as though I should get an "Oscar" award, but, then, I have something better... I have my children, and dh.

    Sorry about how long this post is, but it felt great to let you know about my bf experience and I'm greatful that you care. Now if only I could get my hormones balanced again!

    happy to be heard,
    knmama

  5. #5
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    Mar 2006
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    Default Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    Wow.. you could fix up that post and make it an article for New Beginnings or Mothering. (I know Mothering pays $$)
    What an awsome story.

    Hey and congrats on your son getting on the honor roll! It sounds like you're doing a great job!

    Julie

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    10

    Default Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    what a beautiful post, literally brought tears to my eyes! you are an amazing writer and an even more amazing mother-lucky lucky children to have you as a mama!!!!
    i can really realte to the significan hormonal changes that occur-(i'm going thru it now, DS is 19mos and i think self weaning, down to 1-2x/day) and i've been feeling sad, proud, apprehensive all at once. my appetite has increased so i think these happy hormones are dropping along with my milk supply as DS finds more pleasure from his sippy cup and juice boxes!!! yet intellectually, i'm thrilled that my AP philosophy has been so healthy to us both=trusting his cues and his maturity without forcing things upon him...(i.e no sleep training, no active weaning, etc)
    i think letting a child self wean is such a sacred gift. I think our culture really does women and children a disservice in trying to insinuate that a child must be weaned by a year for fear of being too "clingy" or b/c there arent as many health benefits-i say hogwash to both.
    nursing is the most private, unique and healthy relationship-it's pure, no manipulation on either parties side-just 100% nourishment, bonding, comfort..and a child's ability to stop when they are ready is something i wish more people would trust.
    like you, i feel very reflective of the early days, nursing for me was such a gift after a traumatic c-section and a NICU admission...everything was so high tech, albeit life saving for us both...but the moment i put DS to breast and he sucked instantly, the physiological and emotional rush i had is one i'll remember for ever-it felt so right.
    thanks again for sharing, i'll keep you posted on DS's self weaning path and my ability to slowly say farwell to this one part of our relationship all the while recognzing there are new chapters ahead!!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    329

    Default Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    Quote Originally Posted by knmama View Post
    I get frequent migraines, moderate to severe acne, loose or gain 5 to 10 lbs. at a week's time, my last period was 1 & 1/2 weeks late and went through a short lived (about 3 weeks) depression compounded by also feeling quite lethargic. I went to the Dr. and had everything checked (diabetes, pregnancy, thyroid, etc...) all came back negative. Dr. suggested that it's my hormones due to dd's weaning. She said it will be some time before I'm back to normal.

    knmama
    So glad to know I'm not alone. I have nearly all the above symptoms (especially the acne and depression). DD and I are down to about 2 nursings a day (DD is 15 months). I plan on letting her self-wean, too. But I'm not looking forward to that day.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    21

    Smile Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    You know... I used the resourses on this website a lot when I was working and nursing, then, as I fell onto a groove, I didn't need so much help anymore. Now, since dd has weaned I log on daily. I look for others who might feel like I do. I never expected to feel so alone in this weaning process. Although it seems now that I am among great company, Thank you, truly, thank you.

    To apbbluv, you really made me think... And you are absolutely right when you said "farewell to this relationship...". I realize that is what I am doing, I'm saying goodbye. It's ironic, no one is leaving.

    Don't get me wrong, I look forward for my chest belonging to me again, however, it's just so hard to properly articulate what this deep emotional bond means to me and how much I miss it.

    I'm really happy to have found support here, you all seem to understand what I feel. You don't make me feel ridiculous or like I'm too much.

    To Maya's mom; I've been doing a little yoga and I really like it. It seems to help balance my emotions. As for my acne, proactive is keeping it in check but, it hasn't gone away completely. My headaches and apetite can't seem to get under-control (hungry, not hungry).

    I hope to be able to keep communicating with all of you while we deal with the process of weaning as we celebrate and grieve.

    knmama

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    10

    Default Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    knmama,
    this has been such a heartbreaking week for me, DS hasnt nursed in 48 hours, i dare say he is done ahhhh, this came on sooo fast, he was nursing 3-4x day 5 weeks ago...then started STTN for 13hrs, my supply dropped even tho i was pumping, and he kept refusing to nurse, after naps, then finally last 2 days he even refused first thing in the am...at this point, i think i should stop offering and see if he initiates any "milky-moo's"... i really feel a profound grief, sadness and angst over how suddenly he self weaned, and yet in my mind i know that i wanted this AP-self weaning philosophy to work and IT DID-he's decided he's done, no tears, no frustration, just more frequent asking for his sippy cup of soy milk and no more interest in the breast...ahhhh, i'm so torn as the pride i have in his new toddler skills-please, thank you and zebras at the zoo and longing for the perfect natural dependency we had on one another-we couldnt be apart for more than 2-3 hours for the last 19.5 mos of our lives, and that chapter is over...i'm grateful to be identifying these feelings, seeking validation and reassurance, as i know it's healthier to grieve in the moment than ignore the feelings.
    i'm going to do some major self care, pedicure, spa, candles, writing, church to help me manage these complicated emotions.
    thank you soooo much for all of you who have posted and can understand these feelings. on a more concrete level, i want to ask how long does this grief feeling last-are we talking days or weeks? how about the nursing hormones, how quickly do they "leave" your system and what physical changes can i expect? i'm definitely a bit more grumpy and snappy-but i thinik it's cause i'm sad...good news is i'm not sad around DS, he's so happy, full of energy and movement when he's up from his nap there is no time to wollow-gotta live strong!
    i also hold faith that i will have another child (god willing) and hence have another chance to BF, as well as an interest in adopting a child and BF as well,
    hugs to all the weaning moms!!!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    157

    Default Re: Dd weaned, hormones gone crazy! Help!

    As a suggestion, some mothers have found herbal remedies very helpful in balancing hormones. Each person's chemistry is unique and working alongside one's health care practitioner is advised. Of course, LLL Leaders are not health care professionals and do not offer medical advise.

    Some non-LLL websites with information include:

    Some mothers have used the Balance blend from this store and found it reduced symptoms of PMS. May be used during pregnancy:

    http://angelsherbs.com/about.php

    Vitex is an herb that women have used to relieve symptoms of PMS and/or to restore fertility. From herbalist and author Susun Weed's website:

    "It is especially helpful for women who are coming off the birth control pill. For many women, cycles remain irregular for up to two years after stopping the pill. Vitex can greatly shorten that time and helps ease the body into regaining its own natural rhythm.

    It is a wonderful tonic to enhance the chances of conception through its ability to regulate ovulation and if taken through the first trimester, vitex will reduce the chances of miscarriage. After the birth, it helps a new mother to produce plenty of milk."

    http://www.susunweed.com/Article_Vitex_RedMoonHerbs.htm

    From:

    http://depression.about.com/cs/altme...rnatives_2.htm

    "Two surveys of its efficacy were done on 1,542 women who took a liquid extract (42 drops daily) for spans up to 16 years.

    The patients' doctors rated its effectiveness as either very good, good or satisfactory in 92% of cases.4 Further clinical confirmation of it's effectiveness for PMS can be found in the work of Hardy6 and Gaster7."

    Regards,

    Eve
    Last edited by LLLMamaEve; October 29th, 2006 at 12:00 AM.

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