Anyone stopped BF? — The Bump
July 2015 Moms

Anyone stopped BF?

I'm 2 weeks PP and having a hard time with EBF.... Most of the time it's very painful (he has a small mouth and an intense suck). I'm often in tears when BF and when he cluster feeds my nipples are really sore. I'm using a shield now and it still hurts. I went to see a lactation consultant and besides other positions, it didn't help much. Trying to grin and bear it but I'm so miserable and just sick of being I pain since birth (have several stitches).
Is it this hard for everyone? At what stage do I "give up" and go to formula? Anyone else rxperienxe similar? Have you switched and wished you had earlier?

Re: Anyone stopped BF?

  • I struggled the first week and a half with the soreness. I would dread having to BF because it hurt so much. It has gotten better now and doesn't hurt like it did. My son will be 4 weeks on Thursday. I am also using a shield and I have this lanolin cream I put on after he nurses.
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  • I stopped after about a week. My pediatrician had told me to do have BF and half pump and bottle feed because LO had lost too much weight while in hospital. Well then LO began to favor the bottle and BF is a big fight. He would cry and cry trying to latch on making me feel horrible. I tried using a nipple shield too since it makes your nipple more like that of a bottle but that was just annoying more than anything else. Now I am exclusively pumping and bottle feeding. I can get about 5 oz everytime I pump and LO only eats about 3 oz every feeding so I gave a nice stash of milk now too!
  • If you really want to keep BFing, the first three weeks were definitely the toughest for us! I had to pump a lot because LO came a month early and struggled latching and he could eat for HOURS! We also used a shield to reduce discomfort and help him latch. It sounds like you really want to do what's best for your family, and if that's formula, that's great! Just wanted to give you some hope in case you want to keep trying! : )
  • I stopped at two weeks with both of my boys. A lot of the reasoning was because I wasn't producing, especially with my first. It was painful both times, both had bad latches, and I wanted to enjoy them not dread feeding them. This time around, I started pumping and giving formula but my supply really tanked. I went from getting about an ounce and a half total each session to not even half an ounce total so I stopped that too.


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  • @charmon816 sounds like your LO is still getting lots of breast milk though so that's what's important! Do what works for you!
  • I have considered stopping breastfeeding more than once in his short almost 5 weeks. We too had to supplement with formula due to weight loss. I get almost nothing when I pump (after feedings) I've only pumped once between feedings and still only got about 1 ounce. I'm nervous to pump between feedings because he's really not on a schedule yet and has been cluster feeding this week. I'm still mostly breastfeeding, but on the days that he's been attached to me for 3 hours I don't feel bad giving him some formula. (I did a first but I managed to let go of the guilt). We give him a bottle each night after I feed him so his dad can feed him. And if he's exceptionally fussy we'll toss in another bottle. He has 2-3 bottles a day and breastfeeds the rest of the time. I use lanolin on my nipples often. I'm happier now that we give him formula at times. It's absolutely exhausting to have a baby attached to your boob for hours at a time! Doing a combo has worked best for us (and my nipples lol). Maybe it would work for you too. Do whatever you need to to make it enjoyable and work for your family. I'm lucky my hubby has been cooking every night and helping at home. While he's at work I basically live on protein bars if Owen is fussy! It's been working though. Best of luck whatever you chose to do and know if you stop EBF that is fine. Your baby being healthy is most important!
  • By the way I'm glad you posted this! I was starting to feel like I was the only one who was frustrated with EBF before my kid was wven a month old!
  • Thanks ladies! I think I'm going to have to try the combo. I'm at the stage where I am dreading the next feed and my DH feels useful standing by watching me cry. I've read to start introducing formula slowly, so will try one today. I'm thinking I might pump too before the next feed. I pumped this morning but only got 2oz, so gave him that and topped up with a Shorter BF. I'm upset that it feels like it hasn't worked for me... I keep thinking how can anyone find this enjoyable?!
  • My son will be 5 weeks on Wednesday. It's gotten so much easier now.
    It was rough in the beginning and my husband at one point asked if I wanted to do formula but I didn't wanna give up.
  • I stopped at about 2 weeks. LO wouldn't latch so I got a pump right away. I was only able to get out 1-2oz every few hours which was frustrating so we had to supplement. I cried every time I had to pump and then got very angry and irritable. It's no way to live and I personally don't think it was good for LO to have me crying every time I went to feed him. Happy Mommy = Happy Baby!
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  • When we were on a strict feed every two hours then supplement with 1oz of formula while I pump schedule I cried all of the time. My LO wasn't gaining weight his first week home and he wouldn't wake up to eat. Even on the feeding schedule he wouldn't always wake up to eat. Again it was his first week so I was very hormonal still I would cry my eyes out-sometimes for over an hour! I kept asking my husband "how can I make him eat if he won't wake up?" It was horrible. And I'd get even worse after pumping pretty much nothing! It took me awhile, but since I've let go of the guilt of giving him formula now and then this house is truly happier! And we just saw the doctor today-LO is up to 9 lbs 15 oz! I'm thrilled and doctor is happy too!
  • My LO is almost 6 weeks and I'm thinking of starting to supplement...she is really gassy and spits up a lot so I cut dairy out of my diet & it seems to be helping. (It's only been a few days of no dairy) also her latch is so so and she breaks suction at the breast and takes in a lot of air. When I go back to work in November I don't want to pump so I need to supplement sooner rather than later so she doesn't reject bottles/formula.
  • We're at the 2 week point right now and it has been so tough - you are most definitely not alone on this!! It IS starting to get better now though and my stress has decreased hugely, which also helps things of course!!
    My supply has never been the problem... I produce plenty of milk but the latch was an issue. Lactation consultants really didn't help us to be honest. Then I got a referral to a breastfeeding clinic, which is medical doctors that are trained specifically in breastfeeding. They helped so much with the latch and our time spent breastfeeding has decreased greatly as baby is getting the milk he needs easier. I don't have to pump anymore to supplement him, but I still am to freeze some up. If there is a clinic in your area, give that a go. I won't tell you to persist with the EBF if it is that horrible for you - a stressed out and unhappy momma doesn't make for a happy baby! Do what works best for both of you... You're doing awesome! And if you end up resorting to formula it doesn't make you a bad mom, you're still feeding your baby!!
  • I cried every feeding because of intense pain until this weekend, she's 3 weeks old now, but the truth is that I'm stubborn as hell! She also has a small mouth and I can't get her to place her lips properly, but I guess I've lost sensitivity now haha. If you're not enjoying it, it is ok to search for other ways to feed your baby.
  • @mers90 - sounds exactly like me. I keep reading "it gets better", so I'm stubborn too and waiting for that magical day....!

    @bridgitd - thank you! I was avoiding the LC again as she was helpful, but it didn't help that much with his small mouth/latch. I wonder if she could refer me though...

    We started to supplement with 1 Similac, and I have expressed more. Admittedly I already feel like a load had lifted, And it has given my nipples the rest they clearly needed.
  • I was EBF with my LO. I hate my nipples being touched. So they were sore and it was hard. I loved the closeness and watching her cute little face. But I was struggling. I wasn't producing enough. She lost a pound. Then I had to go on medicine.. And I just switched to formula. I cried.. A lot over it. But was also relieved. I do miss it.. Sorta. I miss being able to feed my baby with my body. But I really like my nipples being free.
    You do whatever you feel is best for you. If your struggling and crying, your baby can feel that. If you want to switch.. Switch. Don't feel guilty about it. As long as your baby is fed and loved that is all that matters
  • I Find the nipple shields to be very helpful with the pain! They are kind of a pain themselves (keeping track of, keeping clean, putting on etc.) but worth it! When at home I use them when out & about I don't
  • klirwin82 said:
    Thank you for posting this! I, too, felt like BF was the ONLY option for feeding my child and anything else made me a bad mom. When we had to supplement, it was both a relief and a huge disappointment. I cried for days and I am still upset about it not working out. I feel like if I had been given the right kind of support from my doctor (who otherwise is fantastic and I would truly recommend her to anyone) and nurses, maybe it wouldn't have been so heartbreaking when it didn't work out.
  • I'm right there with you. I have twins and I just couldn't talent anymore. So I switched to exclusively pumping and formula when needed. It has helped my sanity a lot and my twins are just fine. As long as you are feeding your kiddo there is no wrong answer. Don't let anyone shame you into thinking breastfeeding is the only way. It isn't. Do what you need to do for yourself, family and child. :) good luck!
  • Yes. It was completely miserable for multiple reasons. Baby girl loves her formula and we have both been way happier since I stopped.
  • WSatisfiedPWSatisfiedP member
    edited August 2015
    Are you using the football hold and making sure to get the nipple far enough back. That turned the corner for us, lactation consultant really helped. The cradle hold doesn't work for newborns
    Mom to one in heaven. Mom to one here on Earth.

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  • Day 2 - I'm finding that a combination of BF, pumping, a shield and supplementing midday and a night feed are helping give my nipples a break. I really believe even after a few days that this has saved my sanity.

    The one side that hurts most I do the football hold or with him lying on me. The shield has helped a lot. As have you're responses here - I'm glad up hear others have experienced this and I'm not alone, thanks :)
  • @WSatisfiedP yes the football hold and getting that nipple way back in there were shown to me my first night in the hospital with him! Thank goodness >:D<
  • To help get the nipple as far back as possible cup underneath the entire breast in a U shape and lift it up so its not being pulled down by gravity in the baby's mouth. Then use your thumb to push into the side of your breast a cm back from the areole. This points the nipple towards the baby's nose. Then when the baby opens his or her mouth push the head/mouth towards your nipple rather than bringing the breast to the mouth.
    This helped me with getting a good latch hugely!!
  • At the hospital they told me to cup and hold your breast like a sub sandwich to get it in the baby's mouth… I was actually surprised at how kind of forceful they were at getting the baby latched on, but that's what works
  • My LO had a rough start breastfeeding as he was tongue tied and severe reflux. We had to supplement early on because he lost so much weight. I felt super guilty at first, as I was so prepared to do anything to make this work. The thing is, you can plan all you want but when push comes to shove if you're baby isn't eating then getting nutrients any way is most important. With that said, our LO started breastfeeding beautifully with the shield. I do enjoy the bond (although it is tiresome) and I love knowing I'm giving baby a great source of food. However, my husband and I decided to continue to supplement. We give our LO about 3-4 oz of enfamil gentle ease altogether throughout he day. We really just watch the baby - if after forty minutes or so breastfeeding and he is still hungry we give an ounce of formula.
  • So glad I'm not the only one struggling. I feel so much better after reading so many posts that match my frustrations. Nothing is more defeating than sobbing all over LO because the pain is so intense. My saving grace was Triple Nipple Cream. It was not covered by insurance but the cost was well worth it. Lanolin just wasn't working and this cream helped so much that now I can feed with only a little pain. Blistered, bleeding, painful, scabbed up nipples were the worst! It's worth a try for those that are in pain!
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