Breastfeeding while pregnant/Tandem nursing...I'm gonna do it!

[deleted account] ( 6 moms have responded )

My daughter is 9 mos. and I just found out I'm pregnant again. My first is not anywhere near ready to wean (we mutually enjoy her nursing time), so I plan on nursing her through this pregnancy and am interested in Tandem nursing if she still wants to nurse when my second baby is born. Unfortunately, I recieve criticism for this choice...saying it's "wierd" and "I'd better wean the first baby quick" etc... So, I would LOVE to hear from mommys who did this. How did you keep your milk supply up? Nutrition tips? How did it go? Anything would help. Thanks for reading!!

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Maria - posted on 07/13/2009

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I don't really have any tips, but I also got crap about doing it. When DS was born all the Drs and nurses kept telling me I had to wean DD. However nursing her through the PG was the best thing I could have done! DS ended up being born 7 weeks early and spent a month in the NICU, I had to pump everything for him until he started nursing from the breast at about 2 weeks old. Had I not already had a supply of milk (though small) it all would have been soo much harder and stressful on all of us. It also helped that DD could relieve some of my engorgement when I wasn't in the NICU with DS or if he just could eat all I had to offer. After a little while I just started to tell people that DD didn't nurse anymore because it wasnt worth listening to what they thought about it.

(...that got a little long)

Tandem nursing, I admit was much harder than I expexted, but after what, at the time, felt like forever, it eventually got easier, and now DD has pretty much self weaned.

Jackie - posted on 07/13/2009

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When you're engorged first thing in the morning and the baby is still sleeping, that's when a nursing toddler comes in handy! LOL

[deleted account]

Hi, I am tandem nursing. My son is 2.5yrs old and my daughter is 14 weeks old. I nursed all through my pregnancy, even with complications. I had polyhydramnios (excessive amniotic fluid) and my daughter was LGA. It was painful at first. Actually that's how I figured out I was pregnant. I was like, why is it hurting to nurse so bad... is my son's latch different. Is he resting his teeth more? Well it turns out I was pregnant. The 3rd trimester was a little hard too as I would get "the creepies" I called them... just like butterflies in your tummy, creepy feeling in your tummy while nursing. So I had to limit our sessions to just 5 mins often. My son was cute though, he'd say, OK mommy, just 5 mins. After birth that went away. Thankfully. I never did dry up and from what I could tell my milk did not turn to colostrum until I gave birth. It looked like his normal white milk mustache when he'd be done nursing. Then at the hospital after giving birth it was the liquid gold. My son did not nurse for the 3 days we were in the hospital. He wasn't interested when he'd come to visit. So my daughter got all the colostrum, although my understanding is you'll produce as much as needed until your milk comes in, which mine did by day 2. I had to have a medical needed c-section on a Mon. and by Wed. morning my milk was in, big time. We went home Thurs. afternoon and the first thing my son did was nurse.
I have not had ANY supply issues. My son nursing seems to in fact keep my supply going very nicely. I even have a little bit of an over abundance. For me I started out overweight so I just kept eating like normal, whenever hungry and of course sometimes when I just wanted, and that was fine. I also had bad nausea from about 8w-20w of my pregnancy and had to be on Zofran, which helped and was fine. It was hard, but I still nursed.

The book, "Adventures In Tandem Nursing" is great.

We're doing child-led weaning for both my kids and it is going well. My only complaint lately is my son will come and ask to nurse, he does so very quickly, but enough to make my milk let down and then he's done. I am stuck there w/LOTS of milk. It made me mad at first because it hurts, but then I just thought, oh well, he's stimulating production which is a good thing, I'll just pump to get my freezer supply going.

I also always have a policy that my daughter gets to nurse first since she can't eat anything else, and I tell my son this. He doesn't always like it, but he knows that is how it goes.

My Pediatrician was a little nervous at first about me tandem nursing, afraid my daughter wouldn't get enough, but at 14weeks she's 18lbs 3.5 oz (she was 9lbs 5oz at birth) so he's not worried at all and as he likes to joke I must make half and half or cream or something. But, I did tell him I think my son helps keep my supply up to and he said, well it sure seems like it and he's all for the tandem nursing now that I proved to him we could do it!

Best wishes, it's going to be just fine. Keep up on your fluids, your caloric in take and you should be just fine producing what you need. They do say you need to not only get the extra calories needed for pregnancy, but also the extra calories needed for breastfeeding on top of that, so I think that is like an extra 800 calories a day, but I personally didn't find that hard to do. LOL!

Best wishes!!!!

Jackie - posted on 07/13/2009

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I also highly recommend going to a LLL meeting, or at least attend an online LLL meeting and talking to a leader on the phone...
I tandem nursed my daughters. The are 19 months apart. I had no problems nursing throughout my pregnancy. I have heard that some mothers simply 'dry up' and for others it can be painful. Some children notice that the milk tastes different too. I had an easy time of it and nursed my toddler on demand. When my 2nd daughter was born, I nursed both of them at the same time, which I feel really helped with the bond between both girls! After a couple of months I preferred to nurse them separately b/c I didn't like the feeling of it and I could relax more when they took turns. My toddler nursed more frequently than the newborn too :)
Continue on a healthy, whole foods diet and increase your calories as normal when the baby arrives. I believe it's 500 calories more than normal. I didn't feel the need to increase any more than that just b/c I was nursing 2. Also, I had a pitcher of water by my side all day and cups of ready-to-go snacks like nuts, dried fruit, veggie slices, etc. Ask your SO to prepare lunch for you before work. You'll have less time to prepare food when you're sitting down to nurse 2 children...
It's a shame that people think it's weird, but they will see how well adjusted your kids are and that they themselves will not grow up 'weird'. It's very disheartening when people make comments like that, but I hope you can rise above it and do what you feel is right for you and your children. Good for you and Good Luck!!

[deleted account]

I did not personally do this, but have two friends who did. I think it's great that you want to keep nursing and maybe even tandem! Don't let people get you down, I know it's hard sometimes and everyone has an opinion. Surround yourself with those who will support you, even if it's online. I would suggest attending some LLL meetings for advice on nutrition and supply. If you want I will suggest my friend on here to friend you, she just weaned her 2 1/2yo and is still nursing her 13 month old.

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