Having a very hard time — The Bump

Having a very hard time

Sorry for the extremely long winded post/rant. So my baby boy is now 11 weeks old and he has been eating from a bottle basically since birth. When he was born he had a very difficult time latching and I tried and tried and tried. I used nipple shields offered him the breast before getting the bottle etc. Some times I would be successful in getting him to latch and then it would be like the very next time he would be back to square one and not latch or fall asleep at the breast. Fast forward I won’t lie I have stopped trying for maybe a month now since my husband was able to be a big help with night feeds and just in general since lo was bottle feeding. Well of course my milk supply plummeted but it wasn’t much to begin with since he wasn’t nursing that effectively. So anyway I have been pumping to get back my milk and to eventually nurse and give my baby breastmilk instead of formula. A coworker told me about a device his wife used for their preemie baby which was the Medela supplement feeder device. I wish I would have known about it when I was first starting out but anyway. I bought it off amazon and was extremely excited to try it. I was thinking man I can get my baby boy to latch and suck from the breast which will stimulate me and help me make milk even more effectively than pumping will do. Well I tried to use it today and I set it up and tried to get him to latch and he just screamed and screamed and screamed. He refused to latch at all even when I dripped milk into his mouth to let him know “hey here is your food”. Honestly it was extremely frustrating and brought back those memories of how hard it was in the beginning to get him to latch. I really don’t want to give up but I want to give up because, #1 I hate feeling frustrated with my baby, #2 I don’t want to try and he ends up forming an aversion to my breast and #3 it is honestly just way easier to stick to a bottle since me or my husband can easily make and feed him anytime he is hungry. It has been an awful journey for me and I become envious of those mothers who just had it easy from birth and their baby just latched and drank from them with ease. It just sucks that I couldn’t get that. My birth was already traumatic and this whole journey of breastfeeding has been stressful and I just don’t know if I want to keep going through the frustrating stressful journey that just ends with me giving a bottle while crying my eyes out. I am honestly at my wits end. 

Re: Having a very hard time

  • Are you working with a lactation consultant? They will be your best resource in turning your BFing relationship around. If I were you, I would make sure you try to latch before your baby is crying of hunger. Maybe even give him half a bottle beforehand. He might be a little more patient with latching properly then. Also, if you haven’t already, get him checked for tongue or lip ties.

    And if you decide that you’ve had enough, then quit without beating yourself up for it. A happy mother is far more important than a breastfed baby.
    DD1: June '16 DD2: March ‘19 :::: Married since 2011 :::: USN Wife ::::
  • I am not I saw one in the hospital and she was able to get him to latch but I couldn’t do it on my own. He doesn’t have lip or tongue tie the pediatrician checked for that since I had to see them because he wasn’t eating at the hospital. I will take that advice about getting him to latch before he is really hungry. Hopefully that makes a difference but if not i will have to see if it is worth all the stress to me. I absolutely hate feeling like that I want feeding my baby to be a loving experience not one of stress and frustration. 
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  • I second the recommendation for a lactation consultant. My hospital had several available. I could schedule personal appointments or attend a support group (with my baby) and get help. 

    When you're stressed and baby is stressed/hungry, it's going to be hard to practice latching. It's hard, but be patient. Keep trying, but if it doesn't go well during that feeding session, it's okay to stop and offer a bottle. You can try again next time. 

    At the end of the day, if you aren't enjoying the experience, give yourself permission to stop. There's nothing wrong with that.
  • Honestly, there is nothing wrong with FF'ing.  My milk never came in.  I had to bottle feed, and I felt like a failure.  Then I saw the bonding my husband was having with our daughter and I realized that it was ok.  My body couldnt produce, but yet the bonding happening between not only me and my daughter, but my husband and daughter, too was priceless.

    Please dont beat th yourself up.  If you want, try a lactation consultant,  or if you prefer to share the bonding time - there is nothing wrong with it.  

    Fed baby = happy baby!
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