Needing a little support

Shenea - posted on 10/27/2010 ( 13 moms have responded )

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My daughter is now 2 months old and I have been exclusively breastfeeding since she was born. I am very proud of myself for making it this far. With my son I started supplementing at 4 weeks and stopped breastfeeding completely at 6 weeks. Lately my daughter has been crying all the time it seems like unless she is nursing. I know that she is just comfort nursing most of the time and it is becoming very frustrating. Even when she falls asleep at the breast and I take her off she wakes up and starts to scream. My husband has been my only support for my breastfeeding up until now. He is frustrated that he can't take care of her because she literally cries constantly unless she has my boob in her mouth. She wants nothing to do with her paci.He wants me to switch to formula and everyone else tells me the only way they have been able to overcome this problem is by switching. I don't want to! I'm staying at home with her until she is 5 months and then I will be going to school full time, for now the only time I am away from her is an occasional shift at work because I just work call in hours, so nothing major. I pump for those times, but I don't need much because it's only a few hours maybe once every 2 weeks. How do I stop the comfort nursing?
Also it is only during the day when this happens. She has a bed time already, she goes down at 8 and sleeps until 2 wakes to eat then back down til 5 wakes to eat and then she is up at 8 for the day and then it is non stop!

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Jodi - posted on 10/29/2010

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I remember this stage of breastfeeding alllll to well and it seems like hell at the time. Now... 18 months later...it's just a memory! It sounds like it could be a growth spurt for sure..constant nursing is her way of telling your body "Hey! I need more milk!!!" and your body will catch up soon with her new, increased demand for food. At around 3 months, she should start paying a lot more attention to her surroundings and this usually wards off some nursing sessions as they are just too darned busy or enthralled to have any time for boob! THIS WILL PASS! Formula isn't necessary and you are doing a GREAT job! I would definately let your husband see the responses from all these wonderful, intelligent women...all of whome have gone through this stage I'm sure and come out the other side unscathed. Best of luck...you're doing so wonderful!

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I forgot to say, your partner doesn't have to be able to feed the baby in order to do his part. My partner had such lovely moments with our daughter simply changing her nappies. It's the best opportunity for some eye to eye contact and interaction. He could also make bath-time his job. That way he could give you a break while having some lovely bonding time with his baby. Feeding is really just one part of the whole parenting experience. My partner is great at playing with our daughter, and was so right from the start. I on the other hand am much better at the nurturing stuff. She is only 14 months old but you can already see how much she is thriving on that combination. Tell your partner he really shouldn't feel left out, his role is a really important one, too, it just happens to be different to yours.

Bridie - posted on 10/29/2010

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Well done on sticking to it with such limited support. I know that sometimes it can be easier just to give into the pressure of others. I remember at around 7 weeks my son did the same thing and again at around 12 weeks. It settled down after about 4/5 days, i just put it down to increasing milk supply. Hang in there if you can Iknow it can be frustrating but in the big picture it's such a short time that we're able to share this special act with our babes. Im sure she'll settle down soon enough.

Amanda - posted on 10/29/2010

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If she's at 2 months right now, I would suggest she is having a growth spurt. Also, this is something that is very normal. Have you talked to a lactation consultant, a Peer Counselor or a LLL Leader? They are really great and are great for your support system. I know it seems like a long road, but if you can make it to at least six months of EBF that would be really great for your baby. Really, a year is best but it sounds like your husband may not be as supportive. It does seem hard at first, especially for everyone involved. I never thought I would make it as far as I have and I thought I would have stopped a long time ago, but after we worked out a few kinks, my son and I have a great relationship when it comes to nursing. Also, has your husband been able to bottle-feed your baby with pumped milk? If it didn't work were you there in the room or anywhere close by? Baby's can smell their mother and that's all they want. It was hard at first, but my son eventually took to the bottle. It is a fight when they are used to the breast, but if your husband is patient enough than your baby will get used to the bottle and you can still breastfeed and use pumped milk as well.

Jennifer - posted on 10/28/2010

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yes these times can be hard, I remember crying because I felt so isolated (& I had a mommy support group), I wanted to give up, I was tired of being needed so much it felt so confining, and stifling. I did give up with my first 2 and after getting through the rough times with #3 I regret ever giving up.

there are days like this believe me. I ended up nursing my son for 15months, after weaning him I know regret it. I miss have those very special moments with him so much. I miss being the only one to be able to make his world perfect if only for a moment.

your child is learning to trust you the only was she knows how, eventually she will start to expand her world and daddy will be able to comfort her more and more, and then you will miss this time.

Keep up the good work. Your child may never know fully what you did for her but you will see it in her eyes as she grows up to be a very confident woman.

Charlotte - posted on 10/28/2010

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keeep going! well done, please don't listen to these people who tell you to switch to formula. defo sounds like a growth spurt! try using a sling, we used a baby carrier and still do. my baby loves being close to me. it might stop your baby wanting to feed so much if she is always near you. keep going, because in a few months youll look back at this and itll just seem like a little hiccup and youll forget what all the fuss was about!

Christina - posted on 10/28/2010

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Sounds like she's hitting a growth spurt, which is normal. I know, it can be exhausting and frustrating, but I think if you give it just awhile longer, she'll start to space out nursing sessions more. Hang in there!

[deleted account]

My daughter was attached to my breast for a few months as well, so I totally understand what you are going through. People who are used to bottlefed children are not used to that and often jump to the conclusion that this is something that needs to be fixed. I was constantly told that she was too attached to me and that she'll be all clingy later on. Rubbish! I ended up with the most confident and sociable little toddler ever! And because of all that suckling she'd been doing I have always had a great milk supply and never had trouble pumping for work - something that will be very handy for you when you go back to school. I know it's hard when you don't seem to be doing anything but nursing your baby all day, but this is just a short time in your baby's life and it will be totally worth it. You are doing great! By the way, my daughter never really took to a soother either, eventually she used them as teething rings.

Carolyn - posted on 10/27/2010

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as far as the paci and if you chose to use , at this age it really shouldnt cause any so called nipple confusion as she sounds well established on the boob, one thing i found with my son, was he will only take one particular kind of pacifier. we had a few different kinds from the baby shower of different shaped nipples and he would only take the avent ones that dont have the flat edge. we also dont use it all the time, it is strictly for naps and bed time. i know some people chose not to use a paci at all, and i was hell bent on not using one but it allows him to comfort himself and learned to fall asleep on his own. we introduced a bottle of expressed milk and the pacifier between 5 and 6 weeks and have had no issues nursing what so ever.

Amy - posted on 10/27/2010

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I think that you've hit the first major bump. With all four of mine, we hit the two month mark and wow...it's rough. They all four went through a week or so of non-stop nursing. It's rough, but totally worth it. Forcing a paci will only make her more stubborn to nurse. If it's at all possible for you to tough it out, I encourage you to nurse her as often as she needs/wants it. Eventually she'll realize that there is a big, huge world out there to discover and she can't get there will attached at the boob. She's also probably hitting a growth spurt which always causes an uptick in nursing demands. And she's indidcating that in her whole world, you are the best thing she's got going for her and the truth, she's right! I hope that you are able to keep it up!!
Amy

Celeste - posted on 10/27/2010

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Congrats for making it to 2 months so far!!

It's completely normal for her to want to be attached to you 24/7. It's actually GOOD to comfort nurse because this helps supply down the road. Plus, babies have that biological need! Also, 2 months is a prime time for a growth spurt.

Know that things will get better and it will not always be like this.

Do you have a sling? Many mothers use a sling (like a ring sling) for nursing marathons.

Hang in there. You're doing great!!

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