No ifs, ands or buts about weaning anymore. :(

Sarh - posted on 04/05/2011 ( 29 moms have responded )

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I'm sorry if you mommies are getting sick of my posts, but I don't have any family support and they all seem to think I should quit cold turkey and they all seem to think that quitting cold turkey will be EASY and Not emotional or anything like that. But anyways.



I have Ankylosing Spondylitis and Fybromyalgia. I have been off of my medication since I found out I was pregnant Oct. 2009! That means Cade will be 10ms on the 10th of April. I have also recently found out that my unemployment (a pretty big help) will be ending in about 4wks! Which means I need to go back to work OR we can struggle through and try to make it! I'd rather go back to work.

I really need to be on my meds to help w/the pain. I can't do house hold chores let alone working where I can't take as many and as long of breaks as I please.

My son is a huge momma's boy, he will drink from his sippy cup now!! YEA!!! But it doesn't matter how much formula OR breast milk he drinks from a cup or bottle he still has to nurse or he is just like miserable, even if he happens to fall asleep after drinking from his sippy or bottle w/o nursing he wakes before morning and he has been sleeping through the night since about 3wks old. He only gets the sippy or bottle at bedtime if I have ran an errand, date night w/daddy, or I'm doing a demonstration/party (PartyLite).

How do I wean him from his COMFORT ZONE?! His other comfort zone is sucking his thumb.

I hate to have to wean him as I'm sure you can tell I'm not ready to do so, but I have to. I know it wont be a quick thing, but what is the easiest and most painLESS way to go about it.

I am trying to give him a cup after he eats breakfast (he nurses like 2hrs before he eats breakfast when he wakes), but he just wants me and I guess I'm too much of a softy to put my foot down and make him drink only his bottle or cup.



Some help, advice, anything really would be great! Please don't tell me all about how 1yr or 2yrs and extended breastfeeding is best and how I should try to do it because realistically I can't!

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Emily - posted on 04/06/2011

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Enbrel (Etanercept) is in lactation category L3 (moderately safe). Hale notes that he believes "it is extremely unlikely that clinically relevant amounts would transfer into milk in actively breastfeeding mothers. In addition, due to its protein structure, it would not be orally bioavailable in an infant."

Naproxen is also lactation category L3. In one study, total naproxen excretion in the infant's urine was only 0.26% of the maternal dose. Hale notes to use with caution if using frequently or long term, but short-term use is okay (I'm paraphrasing). He puts in in category L4 (possibly hazardous) if using chronically.

Percocet is category L3. Young infants should be observed for sedation, but this should not be an issue for an older baby. (For what it's worth, I take a similar med for chronic pain several times a week and have done this for years, including the last 4+ years of breastfeeding. Has not had any effect on my kids).

Ibuprofen is category L1 (safest). "Even large doses produce very small millk levels."

Hope this helps. There is a lot of data in Hale's book.. if you'd like more info, contact a LLL leader and they can copy/paste larger parts. I tried to just paraphrase the most important stuff.

Emily - posted on 04/05/2011

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Sarh, it sounds like your rheumatologist is like most doctors in that he's clueless about meds while breastfeeding. :) I have chronic pain conditions myself and I can assure you that many (if not most) pain medications are indeed safe to take while nursing. Especially for an older baby. If you have the names of the meds I can look them up in the book. I know you still want to wean, but it might give you some peace of mind to know that the meds are safe, so you don't feel like you're in a time crunch to wean.

Melissa - posted on 04/06/2011

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Firstly, ignore your family, cold turkey, unless absolutely necessary, isn't a great option! I weaned by eldest at 10 months as she was starting to self wean anyway and the first feed I dropped was night time as she had a reliance on this in falling asleep. We started this on a weekend so my husband was there to give her her cup, read her a story and then put her off to bed. She didn't drink formula, absolutely refused, I ended up giving her cows milk (which she was fine with, but I know it's not recommended), but you can always express and mix it in? At the end of the day, if you are just giving in though, you aren't going to get anywhere. Just do one feed at a time, which ever one is easiest first, like lunch and then maybe the morning, just start with brekky and not boobie? You will need to find the strength to do this if you are going back to work, but no one is sick of you posting I'm sure, so just keep coming back for a vent.

Vicki - posted on 04/05/2011

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Sarh maybe contact LLL, they may have information about pharmacologists who specialise in the area of meds and breastfeeding. Worth a try?

Only if you want to of course, not pressuring. You've done an amazing job feeding through difficulties so far and totally understand if you decide to wean.

[deleted account]

I went back to work when my son was 10 mths old and I use to breast feed him morning and night to still have that time with him and bottle feed him during the day. Michael hated the bottle so badly so I started off giving him a 15min breast feed then the rest of that feed bottle and slowly week by week cut back how much time he breast fed for - ie 15min, 10mins, 5mins. It took about a month of quiet persistance but that seemed to work for me. Also I found that he took the bottle better from his carer when the time did come for me to go back to work. Good luck

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Becca - posted on 04/07/2011

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When I was approaching the time to return to work I started to arrage for other people to care for my son for short periods through the day and gradually lengthened it to the full length of the shift I would be doing. This allowed me to day wean my child before I started back at work. One thing I didn't do is completely wean and we are still going strong at 20months.
I would definately look at whether it is safe to take some of your medications while breastfeeding.

Momof1 - posted on 04/07/2011

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I stopped breastfeeding when my son was 13.5, even though I wanted to go longer. I did it "cold turkey." It was easy, because he was already taking his cup and could drink whole milk. And it was even easier because his daddy was home the day I weaned, so our son didn't ask for me that day. He played with my husband and acted like nothing was wrong. So that first day I didn't breastfeed him at all, except his night feed, then the next day I didn't either and he was fine. He didn't ask for it at all (which was kind of sad.) I also didn't have any problems drying up. I didn't even notice any difference in my breasts the following days/week. Some women/doctors will say not to do cold turkey. So it's all up to you and up to how your son will respond to it.

Minnie - posted on 04/07/2011

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I am always flabergasted how doctors who work with breastfeeding mothers never have a copy of Hale's on their shelves.

Merry - posted on 04/07/2011

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Oh and warn your husband that 'cold turkey weaning' is the most common reason kids get MORE clingy to moms!
The rejection makes them more desperate for moms touch. Weaning him slowly is the best bet you have if your husband wants a 'independent' son. But honestly most boys are mommas boys for the first few years no matter bf or not!

I know we differ, but personally I'd rather bf with the meds then wean. At least maybe you could begin meds and wean slower. with working you likely could continue the am and pm feeds anyways...
But I can honestly say at this point I FULLY support your decision to wean. And I will help any way I can. You deserve all the support you can get :)

Merry - posted on 04/07/2011

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When I really want Eric to fall asleep without bf him I will rock in the chair, and sing to him. If he asks for bf I don't refuse, but I don't give in, I simply ignore the request and rock faster to get him sucking his thumb.
I also hold him differently if I'm trying not to bf, I'll put hus head up closer to my head and his body more in line with my body, not across my belly.
that's the only way I've gotten Eric asleep without bf him except for car rides, but obviously can't do that every day!

Also, avoid your 'nursing seat' wherever it may be. Maybe, if it's a perticular chair you always bf in you could try moving it to another room for a bit to upset the rhythm of his bf sessions.

I hate the idea of tv with kids, but when I'm really not feling like bf I sometimes use the tv to make him forget to ask. Or to get him to stop bf when he keeps sucking for so long!

Other things I've tried was to hold him while he drinks from a cup, but honestly that didn't work for us because he was so close to the boobs he wouldnt take no for an answer!

I've heard some moms have luck putting a band aid over the nipples, idk if it might fool Cade.....

Emily - posted on 04/07/2011

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That is exactly why I went out and bought the book myself! lol I was consulting LLL so much about my meds. Then I got a doctor who was adamantly against taking any meds while breastfeeding and she was totally clueless. I actually take the book to my appointments in order to back myself up. It is shocking to me how many doctors simply rely on the PDR, which has little to no info on actual breastfeeding research.

This paragraph in the intro to Hale's book pretty much sums a lot of things up:
"Most importantly, it is seldom required that a breastfeeding mother discontinue breastfeeding just to take a medication. It is simply not acceptable for the clinician to stop lactation merely because of heightened anxiety or ignorance on their part. The risks of formula feeding are significant and should not be trivialized. Few drugs have documented side effects in breastfed infants, and we know most of these."

One thing I always keep in mind is that nursing my babies, even on medication, is so much healthier for them than formula feeding or weaning. Good luck w/ your doctor!

Rachel - posted on 04/07/2011

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My daughter is 10 months old on the 11th of april, and I just went back to work, I own my own child care and had to lay off some of my employees so now I am there full time some times there for 9 to 10 hours a day, and she is with me all day, but I can't nurse her while I am there... I am so busy, so I feed her in the morning before we leave, and right when I get home, then again at bed time... while we are at the child care she eats baby food, and other healthy snacks, sippy cup ext... It took about a week for her to get use to the new schedule but now she just knows the schedule, and even on the weekends when we are home, she follows it too, and only wants to nurse the 3 times morning, evening, and bed time... then she sleeps all night, and we start again in the morning... when you start to work again you will too find the right schedule, and we as moms just figure out how to make it work... Good luck!



Just to add, I get migraine and have to take meds for them, I can't take the zomig I am supposed to take, but I do take lortabs, I don't want to but in order to function sometimes I have to... I just try and take one right when I start to nurse or pump first, then try not to feed her for as long as poss after taking one... worked for the last 10 months just fine... I know it is not the same, but any way!

Sarh - posted on 04/06/2011

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Thanks so much!! I hope I can print this page off or at least I can write it down and shove it in my doctors face... no, I will be nice, but it gets frustrating having a doctor tell you that you shouldn't even get pregnant let alone breastfeed your own darn child!
She did tell me that w/the percocets when I took them shortly after giving birth that I should take it after he nurses and just monitor him and make sure he was breathing normally and not "sedated".
She wanted to prescribe me Naproxen over any of these other meds even after me telling her it did NOTHING. UGH.
Thanks you, very helpful! :)

Sarh - posted on 04/06/2011

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Thanks Kristen, sorry your family didn't support you either. I hope they weren't like mine, hounding me since he was 3 months old! :(
He's been getting bottles here and there (maybe once a month) since he was a month old, when my hubby would talk me into leaving him w/my mom for a "date night". WOW! 5ms?! Eh, I will be fine w/that and who cares what other people have to say about me nursing him past a yr if it takes him that long to wean.
I don't care about him sucking his thumb! My mom was a thumb sucker and sucked her thumb through high school, but only at night. She told me she would lay on her hands when she fell asleep in high hopes that she wouldn't end up sucking it through the night especially when she slept at friends houses. I'm thankful that he is not a binkie baby. He's been sucking his thumb since a month or two old and has been sleeping through the night since about 3-4wks old, so it is a wonderful thing! :)
Wow, that is a long time! Maybe I can't see myself nursing my child for that long because my daughter is so big! She just turned 5 and she is 60lbs and 4ft tall, I couldn't imagine nursing her. But I give credit to mommies who can.
Oh, and morning and bedtime nursing will be the last to go, for me those are the best ones! He's most cuddly then, other wise he just gets up and goes when he's done nursing during the day. :)

[deleted account]

K so I had no family support either when it came to breastfeeding, so good job cause I know it's hard. Believe it or not you have already started the weening process by giving bottles and sippies. It took me about five months to ween my daughter and she really just stopped on her own after biting me a few times. So I suggest breastfeeding before bed and in the early morning the rest of the time rely on bottle and sippy. wait to ween from thumb sucking work on 1 comfort ween at a time. My mom told me that my brother nursed until he was almost 4 just at night and she finally did just cut him off because the emotional ties were gone by that point.

Sarh - posted on 04/06/2011

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Thanks Melissa! :) My hubby doesn't really help much, but oh well, I don't need him. lol.

Lily - posted on 04/06/2011

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I'm so sorry you won't be able to keep bf your son. I know this will be hard on both of you. Good luck.

Sarh - posted on 04/06/2011

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Sorry, for such the long post.
As of yesterday this is now our schedule and Cade takes his naps just fine! :)
Wake up 6/6:30a- nurses and goes back to bed
Wakes up again at 8/8:30a- eats breakfast and get a sippy of formula, I make 6oz and he doesn't even drink half of it...Is that ok? He normally naps again.
10:30a- snack
12p-lunch & nurses,
3:30/4p-snack and a few sips of his sippy (water or diluted juice)
6/6:30p-dinner, bath, nurses and then bedtime story w/sissy and they go to sleep.

I'm hoping by Monday I can give him a sippy after lunch. Then I'm thinking I will just eliminate the morning feeding if I need to when the time comes and probably the same for bedtime, unless I go back on my meds, but if I'm just going back to work then we should be able to keep at least one of those.

Thank you all!!! :)

Sarh - posted on 04/06/2011

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I want to save the first morning feeding and the bedtime feeding for LAST! For his first morning feeding he is not awake enough to eat breakfast and I'm not awake enough to make him breakfast, plus I have really bad morning stiffness (part of my A.S.).
Emily if you wouldn't mind that would be AWESOME!!
Enbrel injections weekly, Naproxen (PRN, but I rarely took it as I didn't notice it helping), Percosets- also PRN (as needed). Also, sometimes she would give me 800mg Ibuprophen, but that also didn't seem to work much.
Ania, I went to tons of doctors, had blood work done weekly if not every other day!!!, along w/tons of x-rays and MRIs for about 1.5yrs! I was 16 when I had my daughter and that is when all the pain, stiffness, etc started, they continued to tell me oh, wait 6wks, oh wait 9ms your body may just have to take longer to heal, etc. I finally found a rheumatologist who accepted my insurance she diagnosed me and I guess I never really thought about if it could be something else as I guess it is really hard to mistake A.S. if you know what it is. It has to do w/the spine and it completely explains why I would show inflammation on my arthritis panels one day and then not the next. I was fearing that they were going to drain me of all my blood!! That is how much blood work I had done in such short periods of time. I hate being medicated, I don't medicate my children and hate when they have to be put on an antibiotic, but the medication helps for the most part, not 100%, but better then how I feel right now.
I was put on 2 anti depressants that sent me into liver failure (this was before I was diagnosed w/A.S.). My primary said I had the liver of a 70yr old male who had been an alcoholic for like 50yrs! I wish that on NO ONE! Not even my worst enemy. That is the worst I have ever felt, I felt like I was laying in a bed of glass shards! I didn't want to move, I didn't want anyone to touch me... it was horrible, exspecially because my daughter was only a few months old! I still remember when it hit me and it was pretty much sudden!
ANYWAYS!! I would love to find a new rheumotologist, but I have no clue where to begin looking. So, I can't get a second opinion until I manage to find a rheumotologist who accepts my insurance.
I can't quit cold turkey, I can't emotionally and I know he wouldn't be able to handle it!!
How can I get my fiancee to understand that I can not just quit cold turkey? He told me today that he wonders if baby would be more independent if I didn't nurse him so long or at all... :( I guess he thinks our 10m old should be cooking his own food or some shit.

Sabrina - posted on 04/06/2011

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I have six children am currently breastfeeding my last child, I understand about not wanting to stop breastfeeding but have to. I do not think there is a painless way as you put it. It will just be a big change for you both. What I will suggest for you is to completely stop, not just when you do errons. Make it a habit o only get the breast milk in the sippy. He will learn his new routine, I promise.

Ania - posted on 04/05/2011

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Just start weaning him one feeding by one no cold turkey!!! I don't understand who would want to torture a child like that. Obviously if you have to have your pills you have to wean him. start now. By the way are you sure you are properly diagnosed for your diseases? By taking all these pills you are really not doing a favor to your liver

[deleted account]

I'm so sorry Sarh!! I know you've been through a lot w/ this and I think you've done a fantastic job. I wish I had some helpful advice, but as you know... I'm still nursing my 3 year old, so have no clue how to wean a child that uses breastfeeding for comfort instead of just for food. I DO have love and support to offer you though!!

Dru - posted on 04/05/2011

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I would cut out the morning feeding first give him breakfast first. Then you could try and give him a bottle/cup afterward. I know it one of the harder sessions to wean from but it has worked very well for me. As soon as we get up in the morning my daughter gets a diaper change and then we go straight to the high chair. After breakfast I either nurse her or do half sippy half breast. Stay strong, weaning is tough. I've been trying for 2 months but the more I try the more she wants it.

Sarh - posted on 04/05/2011

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Celeste, I believe you did, but I couldn't find it and like a dork I didn't write it down when I first read it.
My rheumatologist insists that the only medication I can take is Naproxen, however when he was first born I was also taking my percosets. This doctor is really weird and I don't care for her, but as far as I know she is the only specialist who can treat my A.S. in my area who accepts my insurance.

Vicki, that sounds awesome. I know we have like breastfeeding groups, but I don't believe we have something like you guys do attached to the maternity ward.

Vicki - posted on 04/05/2011

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I don't know anything about weaning but as others have said there is lots of info out there.

I would look into the meds and safety regarding breastfeeding. Many meds advise against breastfeeding but are actually safe to take while feeding. Here in Australia there's a breastfeeding centre attached to the main maternity hospital who could tell you for sure but in your area I've no idea who you'd go to.

Celeste - posted on 04/05/2011

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I don't think there's a painless way to do it.. I don't remember, but did you see if the med is safe?? I think there's 2 options here:

a) Check to see if a med is safe. Since he's older, most meds are usually safe to take. If I remember right, I gave you a ph# to call, the website and who to call so they can look it up in Dr Hale's book "Mother's Milk and Medications"



or



b) Wean slowly and replace those feedings with formula since he's not quite a year old. I don't think it's going to be easy at all. He's probably going to put up a fight. Here are some weaning techniques:

http://www.kellymom.com/bf/weaning/weani...

Minnie - posted on 04/05/2011

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Sarh, has anyone looked up your specific medications in Hale's Medications and Mother's Milk?



That's quite a rough situation you're in. So complicated. Distraction can help during the day- usually the bed time nursing is the last to go.

Sarh - posted on 04/05/2011

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Thanks Rachael, I didn't think about cutting each nursing in half w/a bottle or cup feeding following... thanks for the idea! All I have heard or read about is cutting out one nursing a day for like a week or so.
Thankfully he will take the bottle or cup from me, but it doesn't matter who give him the bottle he always wants me when he sees me after he's done w/the bottle.

I'm hoping that I can work my schedule for working and medication around bedtime feeding. I'm not sure if my one med will stay in my breast milk 24/7 or just a few hours after I take it.

:)

[deleted account]

I went back to work when my son was 10 mths old and I use to breast feed him morning and night to still have that time with him and bottle feed him during the day. Michael hated the bottle so badly so I started off giving him a 15min breast feed then the rest of that feed bottle and slowly week by week cut back how much time he breast fed for - ie 15min, 10mins, 5mins. It took about a month of quiet persistance but that seemed to work for me. Also I found that he took the bottle better from his carer when the time did come for me to go back to work. Good luck

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