No life as an EBF... — The Bump
March 2014 Moms

No life as an EBF...

Is it normal to feel like I have no life since I EBF?

Since I'm Robert's only source of food it's always my job to feed. When I go out I always have to think about leaking, the right bra, the type of shirt I can wear if I need to nurse elsewhere, etc.

If I leave him with a babysitter I still need to think about pumping and I feel like that's even more a pain in the ass than just nursing!

Tomorrow MIL is taking Robert so I'm going to spend time with friends. I'm not even looking forward to it because I'm trying to figure out logistics for pumping! They wanted to go for a hike and then a picnic lunch ... How the hell can I do that and not become crazy engorged and leak... :(

Same thing with my friends bachelorette. Her sister planned this awesome full day winery tour. Again I'm trying to figure out how to squeeze in pumping while out and about and it's just making me want to stay home.

I love breastfeeding but I hate it at the same time.

Is this how it is or are there ways to make it less of a hassle?
Missfunballzartistericaahc1503caseinpoint[Deleted User][Deleted User]Mandyw75Hays0770
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Re: No life as an EBF...

  • lazyreaderlazyreader
    Long-Lasting Membership 1000 Comments 500 Love Its Photogenic
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    edited July 2014
    Once I realized that I can go 5-6 hours between pumping I was golden.
    Because if J eats from *one* side at a feeding + eats every 3-4 hours = one boob fills up in approx 6-8hours. I know this because I pump before bed and I'm full in the morning...
    when one is full the other is half way. Then the full one gets emptied. And the other continues.

    So really if I was goin out for a fun day with the girls, I'd pump once an hour before I was leaving, and once more right before I walked out just to be sure
    I'm good and empty. Then I only need to bring my "to-go" pump (I have a medela swing I bought of craigslist) as a just in case my boobs go crazy.
    MissfunballntdaneWisconsinCheese12
  • MissfunballMissfunball
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    edited July 2014
    I'm with you thete. My MIL made me feel like a POS because I didn't have enough milk for her to stay at the hotel during the wedding and I had to plan when I could pump or feed during the wedding.

    I just remind myself why....I'm a slave to it but I know it's what's best for LO. Also follow @Kacie‌ s advice. That's pretty legit



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  • ntdanentdane
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    It can be tough but @Kacie‌ gave a good example of extending your time between pumps. Manual pumping or at least hand expressing a little might help with engorgement. Hopefully you can manage to get your pump breaks in but still enjoy yourself when you're away!

    It could be worse. One of my twins still refuses a bottle and half the time gets mad if I'm gone at all so it's been really tough to get breaks. DH is great about doing what he can to get me some time away, but I understand feeling like you have no life!

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  • It's just food. If you are exhausted from breastfeeding, consider alternatives...I.e. formula. I promise your baby will still grow and develop beautifully. The biggest downside is the cost. We did and never looked back. Best decision for our family and lifestyle.
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    LoveMoose85
  • I've been dealing with this lately too. It's very difficult sometimes to allow myself to be 100% everything all the time for LO. I love him of course and I am dedicated to EBF but it is so hard some days when you just have no time for yourself. Put a few of those kind of days together and it can be really bad. 

    I'm trying to get my butt back in shape and DH has graciously offered to do bed/bath routine so I can go to the gym for all of 45 minutes but LO refuses to take a bottle recently so I am coming home to a screaming starving baby and a frustrated husband and a bedtime routine that is now 45 minutes behind schedule. I feel like I can't do anything or go anywhere ever!! Lol I'm also in the midst of a wonder week and during them I really lose sight of the big picture because LO is on me constantly for however many days until the wonder week subsides.
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  • OH PS ladies...don't donate blood, I'm having to dip into my supply because I'm low on milk.  donating platelets was fine (cant now) but whole blood messed it all up making it a little more stressful since LO doesnt take a bottle from me



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  • It is really hard! Weirdly I have been feeling very frustrated with clothes lately. I am so tired of my rotation of like eight outfits. And I can't find much at the stores that is cute and isn't ridiculously expensive. Blah! Like I don't already feel un-sexy enough.

    Since I have started pumping more I am feeling better in general. I have more freedom and I prefer nursing SO much it seems like less of a chore.

    Every once in awhile I get the trapped feeling. But I think that happens to everyone who has a baby. Good thing they are so cute, huh?

    Missfunballkimberpoo
  • I feel the exact same way. I can't wear dresses easily because I need to be able to pump or nurse constantly. Now that DS is up every two hours at night again, I am frustrated that I am the only one who can feed him.

    DS turns 5 months this weekend and I've heard from some other EBF moms that something happens around 6 months and it just gets easier. That's the light at the end of my tunnel! Other than that, my goal is to make it to 6 months, ideally a year. So after 6 months I will take it a day at a time and supplement if needed.

    We're almost halfway to a year, and the other half will fly by with all the new things our LOs will be doing (not to mention the holidays and whatnot)! Soon enough we'll all be talking about weaning and wondering where the time went.

    fish8412[Deleted User]ahc1503
  • I feel the same way as you. EBF is a huge commitment but I've accepted the fact that my social life is limited and I'm used to it by now. I remind myself that I've been able to go out and do whatever I want for many years prior to bring pregnant. For me, the pros of breastfeeding outweigh my lame, boring social life.

    However, if EBF starts to drive you crazy, go ahead and supplement with formula. It's ok!!!! :)

    Like others have said, get a manual pump while you are away from LO for extended periods of time. I have avent phillips and it's great.

    WisconsinCheese12
  • I have felt the same. I try to remind myself that overall it is a small amount of time and it won't be like this forever. Knowing formula is an option helps. But yeah it's tough to have to plan everything around bfing or pumping.

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  • memo9memo9
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    It does get better once lo starts eating solid foods! Hang in there mama! 6 months and on really is the sweet spot. They can latch by themselves, they get super efficient, and you can distract them with snacks if the timing isn't perfect.
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    SomersIslesbennieangel[Deleted User]ahc1503
  • I hear you. Add to this that my son is SUPER attached to my boobs and I just feel like I can't ever leave him unless it's absolutely necessary, like for work. Hang in there. I am also anxiously awaiting him turning 6 months.

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    ahc1503
  • @dancer7889‌ I do the tank and shirt idea sometimes. I love my pull apart dresses or stretchy ones I can pull down (like this and scored a ton from Ross. They aren't fancy but I don't feel like I'm slumming it either



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  • kimberpookimberpoo
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    edited July 2014

    I felt the same way until I got into a pretty good routine. I pump in the morning when I wake up and in the evening before I go to bed, and on work days that's it. On weekends I pump both times and then nurse lo a few times in between. just during those sessions I get about 18 oz pumped per session. my body has just adjusted to this schedule, although I will say that before I went back to work and nursed lo in between sessions every day I got an extra 12 oz about every other day for my stash, whereas now I get enough for the day and that's it. On an average day I go about 10-11 hrs between pumps.

    I've gone longer than that a few times, so when it comes to engorgement I just ignore it. yea I'm uncomfortable but I have pads and I can relieve some pressure by pressing it out in the bathroom if need be.

    When LO goes to grandma's house during the week we take BM bottles in the cooler for him. however, when we go other places, like out to restaurants, I'll use formula so I don't have to hassle with bringing a cooler and warming the bottles up. I have a good system - a small bag that fits in the diaper bag with a bottled water, empty bottle, and formula dispenser in it. mix and go...serve room temperature. very easy. If you really wanted to do BM while out, you could! our diaper bag has a special pocket for an icepack and a bottle to keep it cold. just ask for a coffee cup with a little hot water in it and set the bottle in that to warm it up.

    jbelle 's idea with the 2 tops! that's great! I think for your upcoming outings, just pump until you're 'empty' right before you leave, plan to pump right when you get home, and be prepared with lots of extra pads and an extra shirt. if things get hard (literally!) just express a bit in the ladies room. you will be ok.

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  • I just expect to bring the twins pretty much everywhere with me. I've gone out without them a few times since they got out of the NICU (girls night with friends, to see Wicked, and a couple movies with DH). I have a frozen supply that I dip into when needed since I'm not back to work. I get engorged (and HUGE 'cause there's enough milk for two) but other than being uncomfortable I just pump as soon as I get home to replace the stash!
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    ntdane
  • This post is like a breath of fresh air.  I made DH read it.  One of the things I find hardest for me is just that people don't consider that I have to pump or nurse or lose it.  It doesn't seem to matter how many times I tell them.  As it is, LO is combo-fed and probably only gets about 50% BM.  I'm just not making enough, especially righty.  :(  I feel like I'm constantly explaining away suggestions of doing things because I'll need to pump and it's not a viable option.  For example, DH really wanted me to do this day long scavenger hunt that is literally about 9 hours in and out of a van with everyone searching for things as quickly as possible.  I end up feeling like I'm somehow not making enough of an effort to be out and about.  Not much point to my ramble, I guess, except to say that it really is a big commitment and I'm glad we can all commiserate on that point.

    Clearly, I have no tricks or time-savers to offer, but I appreciate the ones that have been offered so far.

    bennieangelWisconsinCheese12Missfunballcaseinpoint
  • I feel like this too, lately. We don't do bottles, so I can't ever leave Charlie for more than 2 hours. Luckily he is already really efficient... He usually nurses from one side only for about 5 minutes. But lately he has been really fighting eating, probably because he's cutting teeth, but it's frustrating that getting him to eat is such an ordeal.

    Anyway, no advice... Just commiseration. Hoping it gets better soon!



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  • Just another shout out of support for all of you ladies!  I bf my older boys but was unable to produce for Levi (breast surgery 10yrs ago affected my milk ducts) And the addition of going back to work the pump was not sufficient to keep my supply up and/or I caved early.

    It is better after 6mns and just as pp's stated soon you can provide snacks/food to delay nursing.

    You are all doing a wonderful job providing for your lo's!

    Me 42, dh 49

    6.30.98,  6.21.00,  12.4.01,  2.12.03,  3.21.14

    http://www.fertilityfriend.com/home/3d15a4

  • jwls84jwls84
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    Honestly it can be really overwhelming, but I try my hardest to not over think it. If I am out I usually BF right before and then BF or pump when I get home. I also plan way in advance. I know that next weekend I have baseball playoffs so I am pumping once a day to freeze so I can leave enough milk.
    If I don't prep far enough in advance then I freak & stress.
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    WisconsinCheese12
  • benniea I figured as much, so no worries.  And thanks!  :)

  • I think this is one aspect that isn't really talked about much in the ebf world, and I wish it was. It's such a huge commitment (and for me, so rewarding 99% of the time). I've always been a homebody, but ebf twins makes me a bit stir crazy sometimes. Nip is hard unless I have someone with me, so on days DH is at work, I usually run to target just after nursing for some adult interaction and change of scenery. No advice from me, but as several of us have brought up, hang in there :)
  • BF is my secret weapon, I can calm her in a matter of seconds. I don't know what I am going to do when I stop. 

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    WisconsinCheese12caseinpointwearallthebabies[Deleted User]
  • I love this thread. It makes me feel normal. I've made 5 out of my 12-month goal so far. I have also heard that after 6 months it gets easier. I can't wait to start solids next month just for this reason. I feel trapped some days, LO will take a bottle, but not happily, mostly forced. So my mommy guilt is terrible. I only leave him to work. I need to tend to my marriage-as in date night....but it's sooo hard. LO cries at night when I don't nurse him. My husband has a hard time with him when I occasionally work a night shift, so I worry about someone else doing bedtime feeding & routine. Plus he still wakes to feed at night. I feel like I am the ONLY one who can take care of him. I logically know this is not true, but my mommy-heart wins. The one thing I didn't expect from breastfeeding is the attachment. From both me & LO. I HATE for him to have to take bottles, I try to limit this to a minimum, but I literally have ZERO time to myself. Here's to clinging to the hope that 6 months making things easier!
    zartisterica
  • It definitely is a challenge. When we went to a wedding last weekend I brought my manual and pumped in the bathroom. I didn't pump before bed and totally regretted it. Woke up super engorged and uncomfortable. Timing things feels impossible sometimes

    But as other ladies have said, HUGS.

    Maybe we should start a weekly EBF check-in? Just to offer support? I know with pumping at work and feeling chained to my nursing pillow somedays I could use some people in my corner! It sounds like a lot of us are struggling emotionally/mentally with EBF issues.
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    Missfunballfish8412bumpuser9058414Khope87
  • MA&CBMA&CB
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    I definitely have moments where it feels overwhelming or I feel weirdly resentful that MH doesn't have the same responsibilities I do as a mother.  When I was pregnant we got tickets to a concert in August that I really wanted to go to, and I figured "the baby will be 5 months, it will be fine".  But now that he's here, and I'm EBF'ing, I realized I couldn't think of a really great way to go and enjoy it.  It's 3 hours away, standing in the pit, and then 3 hours back after a long work day - I couldn't figure out how to pump, who would put my baby to sleep when he usually nurses to sleep, didn't feel fair to be apart from him all day and night.  So I sold my ticket, and I'm sad about it, but there will be another time and not another baby.

    I'm way more comfortable NIP'ing this time around than I was with my first.  I'd almost always pack a bottle if we were going out with DS1, but I only do sometimes now, like going out to eat so I can eat and not worry about it, but otherwise I NIP, and that does make it feel easier.
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    kstar83
  • I'm all for the check in. The biggest issue I've had that no one talks about is how tied down you are. Everything you hear about EBF when you're pregnant is all puppies and rainbows. I spend hours every day stuck on the couch with a baby attached to me. Sometimes I enjoy the forced break but more often than not I find myself feeling trapped. It would be nice to have a place to discuss these things and commiserate where I won't feel like I'm rubbing it in the noses of those moms who wanted to breastfeed but it didn't work out for them.
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  • I do not BF but I EP so I can commiserate some.

    Hugs.

    Also, fwiw, it helped me go out and do stuff if I had a pump with the car adapter so I can pump in the car on the way or on the way back. That always brought me comfort.

    I even pumped in a mall parking lot for 20 minutes! Ahhh sweet relief!
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    [Deleted User]talee1989
  • Don't get your panties in a bunch. Formula is another option and she hadn't mentioned it. Everyone is very judgmental about the topic, so I simply said not to worry about what others think. I never told her to stop breastfeeding. I was just supportive.

    Seems like you fit perfectly into the judgmental category.
    kirotea said:


    JenW1029 said:

    It's just food. If you are exhausted from breastfeeding, consider alternatives...I.e. formula. I promise your baby will still grow and develop beautifully. The biggest downside is the cost. We did and never looked back. Best decision for our family and lifestyle.

    Um, ok. OP did not say anything about wanting to stop BFing. She was looking for ways to make it easier that she perhaps hadn't thought of yet.

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  • @FarmBoysWife‌ where are you pulling die from? Completely out of context, but not surprising!

    kirotea said:


    JenW1029 said:

    It's just food. If you are exhausted from breastfeeding, consider alternatives...I.e. formula. I promise your baby will still grow and develop beautifully. The biggest downside is the cost. We did and never looked back. Best decision for our family and lifestyle.

    Um, ok. OP did not say anything about wanting to stop BFing. She was looking for ways to make it easier that she perhaps hadn't thought of yet.
    Also op did not say her kid was gonna die from formula... (Glad I'm not the only one who thought this was out of place...)


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  • JenW1029 said:

    Don't get your panties in a bunch. Formula is another option and she hadn't mentioned it. Everyone is very judgmental about the topic, so I simply said not to worry about what others think. I never told her to stop breastfeeding. I was just supportive.

    Seems like you fit perfectly into the judgmental category.

    kirotea said:


    JenW1029 said:

    It's just food. If you are exhausted from breastfeeding, consider alternatives...I.e. formula. I promise your baby will still grow and develop beautifully. The biggest downside is the cost. We did and never looked back. Best decision for our family and lifestyle.

    Um, ok. OP did not say anything about wanting to stop BFing. She was looking for ways to make it easier that she perhaps hadn't thought of yet.


    ok we all know formula is the back up...I'm pretty sure of that but OP was asking for advice on EBF or pumping, a lot of us need that extra encouragement to stay on that path when it's hard...but yes, well all know formula is a possibility, but that's not advice for what OP asked.



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  • @Missfunball‌

    I understand what you're saying and agree; however people need to remember that everyone has a different perspective and just because it's advice you wouldn't give doesn't mean it's bad advice. The OP asked for advice and I provided it from my perspective. I had no breastfeeding advice for her as I was unable to breastfeed. I simply provided a view that others don't have (for the most part) as the majority of March14 are breast feeders- so it seems.

    My point exactly when you mentioned formula being "back up". I'm not referring to formula as backup. I said she shouldn't feel bad about considering switching if she decides that's something she wants to consider long term.

    It's great for others to encourage her to keep going - you can relate to one another. However people don't need to lose their shit when they read replies that may come from a different perspective.
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