May 2013 Moms

Need encouragement

I'm sitting here while DS2 naps and contemplating giving up pumping and just going to formula.

I have horrible guilt and I'm scared to death I'll regret it when my milk dries up. I keep spacing out my pumping further and further and supplementing more and more.

He never seems satisfied after drinking breast milk but downs his formula and seems perfect.

My doctor, LC and health dept nurses are all very much pro bf which is great until you contemplate stopping and then it gives me an anxiety attack thinking about telling them.

Any advice, opinions etc? I remembering crying when I made this decision with DS1 and I'm practically in tears now trying to decide what to do.
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Re: Need encouragement

  • What helped me continue BFing with my first child was to set weekly goals. She was born on a Friday so every week I told myself I was just going to make it to Friday. I did that for the first 12 wks and after that I didn't really think about it anymore. We made it to 6 months EBFing.


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  • MAK06MAK06
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    Hi ... I don't often post much; but lurk here an there and saw your post the other day. Had planned to reply to that and then got sidetracked. Anyway, at that point i think you were bf'ing him then giving pumped milk afterwards? Are you still putting him to b.reast at all? Are you just pumping now and overwhelmed? why does he seem unsatisfied? how much/often you feeding? If I can help with issues i will definitely offer any advice I can! But if you have already decided you're done than you don't need to feel guilty! You can't be a giant stressball as part of being able to take care of your LO involves you taking care of yourself!

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  • It's very difficult when people are pushy when it comes to BF'ing. I know I've been sent on guilt trips and it's not right.

    Bottom line is that you need to decide what's best for you and your family. EBF'ing but being a stressed or unhappy mama is no good.

    I know it's tough when everyone wants to put their two cents in, but no one has the right to judge you. Don't let anyone let you feel bad!

    Good luck no matter which route you choose!
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  • I've had these same thoughts. I made a goal to myself to atleast make it the 8 weeks until I go back to work, I'm halfway there. I am also BF, trying to pump and still supplementing with formula atleast once or twice a day. He just doesn't seem full and I've already given him all I have produced. I've been trying my hardest to make small daily goals with his feedings. Whether its no formula or try everything before I give in to that.

    It is a hard choice and its one only you can make, which makes it even harder to decide. My family would love for me to just switch to formula so I can leave him with them but I just don't want to yet. I'm trying to up my supply so he will be satisfied without formula. Do what ever you think is best momma! A stressed momma is no fun.

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  • image MAK06:
    Hi ... I don't often post much; but lurk here an there and saw your post the other day. Had planned to reply to that and then got sidetracked. Anyway, at that point i think you were bf'ing him then giving pumped milk afterwards? Are you still putting him to b.reast at all? Are you just pumping now and overwhelmed? why does he seem unsatisfied? how much/often you feeding? If I can help with issues i will definitely offer any advice I can! But if you have already decided you're done than you don't need to feel guilty! You can't be a giant stressball as part of being able to take care of your LO involves you taking care of yourself!


    I would love to nurse but LO has never seems satisfied after a feeding. No matter how long or how often I nurse he still acts fussy. When I started supplementing with formula that all changed. Well it changed as far as the formula bottles go.

    I went to EPing and I can't keep up so I still supplement. I nurse whenever I feel like it. I think more for my confort and to see if it will still work. Every time he seems unsatisfied.

    I keep getting so busy with errands, getting ready to move to a new house, keeping up with a toddler, etc that I often forget to pump and when I remember its already been several hours.

    The bottles he does are 3 oz and don't satisfy him for than 30 minutes to an hour. I know formula stays with them longer but I can tell it satisfies himself as well. He's more calm and less fussy after his feeding. Where as with the breast milk he will fuss and cry until I finally give in and feed him. He also won't sleep well for naps after bf milk but will crash for formula.

    I just don't understand. At night many times I give him his breastmilk but end up having to make a bottle of formula afterwards to fill him up. That doesn't happen when I just make the formula.

    Any ideas? I'm so close to just giving up. But I don't want to regret it it. Especially since this is more than likely my last baby. There is nothing like that bind I have when nursing.
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  • Its funny... I was never so hellbent on breastfeeding until we had problems with it. Then I became OBSSESSED with getting it to work, beating myself up about it, etc. It took a lo.t for me to finally start EPing with a formula supplement. And even now part of me wonders if I didn't "try hard enough" which is silly. Even the LC I talked to said 90 percent of those in my shoes probably would have given up by now.

    At the end of the day though... I'm happier. DS is happier. He is well fed, growing, thriving and loved. And while some may not agree, even his doctor said 5 years from now it won't even be something we think about any more. My opinion... do what's best for you. And be happy to live in a time when formula is available and is a perfectly OK option. Its so hard not to feel guilty but I think as moms.... its what we do best.

    Good luck!!
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  • image CNJ4EVA:
    It's very difficult when people are pushy when it comes to BF'ing. I know I've been sent on guilt trips and it's not right.

    Bottom line is that you need to decide what's best for you and your family. EBF'ing but being a stressed or unhappy mama is no good.

    I know it's tough when everyone wants to put their two cents in, but no one has the right to judge you. Don't let anyone let you feel bad!

    Good luck no matter which route you choose!

    All of this. And here are some HUGS.

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    BFP#3 – 1/5/14 – EDD 9/12/14 – natural m/c 2/16/14

  • image AllisonO78:
    Its funny... I was never so hellbent on breastfeeding until we had problems with it. Then I became OBSSESSED with getting it to work, beating myself up about it, etc. It took a lo.t for me to finally start EPing with a formula supplement. And even now part of me wonders if I didn't "try hard enough" which is silly. Even the LC I talked to said 90 percent of those in my shoes probably would have given up by now. At the end of the day though... I'm happier. DS is happier. He is well fed, growing, thriving and loved. And while some may not agree, even his doctor said 5 years from now it won't even be something we think about any more. My opinion... do what's best for you. And be happy to live in a time when formula is available and is a perfectly OK option. Its so hard not to feel guilty but I think as moms.... its what we do best. Good luck!!

    This was me to a T with my daughter. I fought, kicking and screaming with EBF with her until 5.5 months when I realized I was spiraling into some bad anxiety and depression. I sought help, switched to formula and we both were so much better afterward. She finally gained good weight and I was mentally more positive and able to be a better mom (and even wife) because of it since I could now function better. You need to do what is best for you both and if you are so broken down all the time, it doesn't benefit the health of your entire family. In the end you control the way you feel. I totally understand how it's hard to not let others opinions get into your head but push through! No one has the right to bring you down. I hope you find what's best for you and your baby. Only you know that. Good luck!!

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  • MAK06MAK06
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    Well you certainly do have your hands full with everything going on and moving on top of it has to be super stressful!  

     When you posted the other day that he didn't seem satisfied but then you'd pump and he'd take more my thoughts were to try and do some br.east compressions while feeding him to get him to take in more milk.  You grab and kinda squeeze downwards and it helps to get more milk into him.  You can do the same thing with the pump to get more milk.  This is a long video (and I think it's more about pumping but if I remember correctly it shows how to do the compressions). I had to supplement with DS1 and once the LC showed me this I never supplemented again, my supply increased, and he gained a ton of weight!

    http://newborns.stanford.edu/Breastfeeding/MaxProduction.html

     I am kicking myself because I had a long convo with my LC about formula and breastmilk and she told me some interesting facts about it and reasons why they are sometimes more satisfied on it.  But I just can't remember everything she said (we were in the NICU at the time and I was overwhelmed).  If you really want to succeed .. have you talked with your LC to see if she has any advice?  Breastmilk definitely is digested more easily and they won't last as long as they do with formula but 30 minutes is slightly excessive!  Has he been like this since birth or are you thinking it's a growth spurt?

    I agree that if you truly want to succeed (NOT that it's a failure AT ALL to stop) to keep setting small goals.  That's a great suggestion especially since breastfeeding is the most challenging in the first several weeks and does get easier after that!  You pay your dues now with struggling to adjust and overcome the difficulties but it can make life easier down the line when you don't have to worry about packing bottles, formula, etc.  

    I am sort of getting the impression though that you are physically exhausted and just done with it.  If this is the case, you don't have to feel guilty!  LIke I said before and other posters have said it will make for a happier and healthier household and that is what is most important.  You already gave LO many benefits from BF'ing so far. Screw anyone that doesn't support that decision.

    If you don't want to give up completely I'd suggest talking with an LC for any pointers they may have.  And if that doesn't pan out what I would do is pick a plan and stick with it for a week or two and see how things go.  By plan I mean maybe decide that you will breastfeed in the morning and at night (with the br.east compressions if able) and supplement as needed after.  Or pump in the am and pm (so he gets some milk and you can fall in a routine). Or attempt BF in am and then pump as able throughout day.  Perhaps doing the breast compressions will help!  Do you hear him swallow?  I'm curious if you try this if in time he'll be more satisfied?  Whatever you think would work for you to get something you're comfortable with that even if he gets supplementation you are still getting some great nutrients into him and it will buy you some time to decide what's best without completely stressing for every feeding.   

     Hope that helps a little ... best of luck in your decision!  I'm sorry it's been so stressful :( 


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  • I feel ya!  I have been experiencing a similar situation and similar emotions.  I keep reminding myself to not let the opinions of others outweigh what is best for my family.  BFing for me was a nightmare.  EPing worked for a while until LO's intake increased to the point where it was difficult for me to keep up and I was getting tired of obsessing about pumping and not enjoying my baby.  Right now, I'm pumping 5-6x a day and supplementing with formula.  My stress level is so much lower and I'm enjoying just being with LO more and also not feeling like I HAVE to pump while she's in the other room screaming while waiting on me to finish.  The only time I start to get anxiety about it is when I start to worry about the opinions of other people, but they are not the ones who need to be a good mom to my LO.  Ultimately, just do what is right for you and what can help you to focus on your baby and enjoy these precious first months!  :)  *HUGS*
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  • +ASH++ASH+
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    I formula fed my first two and they thrived just fine and I have a wonderful bond with them. I'm nursing DD and, surprisingly, I've taken to it. 

    As someone who has seen both sides of the issue - there is no wrong answer. Do what you feel is best and be happy with your decision. Anyone who judges you (either way) does not have an opinion that matters.  

    I would advise switching him to formula for a week, while still pumping so you don't lose your supply. If you feel good about it after that week, your decision is made.  

    DS1 - 9; DS2 - 6; Angel - May 10, 2011; Baby Girl - Due May 19, 2013
  • I just wanted to say I totally understand. I'm almost in the same situation. My LO never would latch and I've been EPing, it is a HARD job. I give her formula at night because I can't keep up with her demand, and she won't sleep well on BM. I also feel like I spend too much time attached to that stupid pump but I just keep hoping eventually I will make more milk and maybe she will start to nurse. I forget and put off pumping sometimes and then I feel guilty. And if I'm pumping constantly like I should, I feel guilty that I'm ignoring LO or DH or housework or cooking or whatever.

    It's a tough spiral to be in. I agree that if we switch to formula, our babies will be fine and down the road we probably won't worry about it. Part of the reason I haven't quit is because people, mainly my mom, make me feel like I can't do it... To quit would only make her be right!

    This is a long reply, sorry. But I think you have to be the best mama you can be to your LO and if bfing makes it difficult then you need to re evaluate maybe.
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  • image jesselayne8:
    What helped me continue BFing with my first child was to set weekly goals. She was born on a Friday so every week I told myself I was just going to make it to Friday. I did that for the first 12 wks and after that I didn't really think about it anymore. We made it to 6 months EBFing.

     

    THIS exactly!! (with both DS and DD) It is a hard thing to do (BF) especially when they seem more satisfied with the bottle!!  If you REALLY want to BF keep with it! The more you space out nursing the less your body will make.  You might have to dedicate 48 hrs to just nursing...hard I know!!  The more you nurse, the more milk you will make, and will start completely satisfying LO. Just keep putting LO on the breast...even if you feel empty.  Let them nurse for awhile and then supplement if you have to.   

    However...if you DONT want to BF but just feel like you SHOULD...dont feel bad.  I had a really hard time BFing DS (mainly pumped b/c he wanted to inhale his food apparently faster than I could give it to him) and made it to 6mo before giving him formula.  I cried giving him that 1st bottle, but a happy baby=happy mama!  Do what is right for you, not for your doc/LC. 

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  • Don't keep doing it because you are anxious about telling your dr, LC etc... If you want to continue do it because you want to... It will make a difference.

    When we were in the hospital and they made us start supplementing I was devastated. I cried waiting for them to bring the formula and I cried giving him the bottle. I felt like a failure... But I had to remember that I was doing what LO needed at that point.. We have had no issues once my milk came in.

    Bfing takes a lot out of you... Aside from the physical aspect it is tiring to be the only one who can feed LO. At night I am the one to get up and then it takes a good 30 mins after I'm done before I can put LO down due to reflux. Doing this a few times a night and I'm exhausted. I keep doing it because I want to. Not for anyone else.

    If someone says something tell them to jump in a lake an leave the raising of your hold to you! Hugs!

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  • image CNJ4EVA:
    It's very difficult when people are pushy when it comes to BF'ing. I know I've been sent on guilt trips and it's not right.

    Bottom line is that you need to decide what's best for you and your family. EBF'ing but being a stressed or unhappy mama is no good.

    I know it's tough when everyone wants to put their two cents in, but no one has the right to judge you. Don't let anyone let you feel bad!

    Good luck no matter which route you choose!


    Exactly this, never put BF over Mothering...the most important thing is that the baby is getting the nutrients he/she needs and that you're mentally able to enjoy this experience.

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