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  1. #1
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    Default when do you decide to give up BF?

    I know the forum supposes to be asking for BF support.....

    I just want to see what people thoughts are. I am like some of the women who struggle BF. My milk didn't come in until day 5 post birth. DS is 2w+ old now. His demand increases exponentially. He is drinking 80--120ml formula alone per feed now (without breast milk). My supply can never meet the demand. I don't even know how much i produce anyway. It varies whenever i pump. I tried fenugreek at the beginning and have now switched to motilium since Monday.

    The lactation consultant suggestion is BF (30 mins total), top up, pump. This routine has become very difficult for me because bub is a sleepy eater. He hardly can drink the whole bottle at once. I have to do nappy change, burping in between to wake him up. Sometime it was rather difficult to wake him up to finish the bottle. The whole feed can take up to 1.5--2hr. I pump as much as i can during the day. He doesn't sleep long (1.5 hr if i am lucky). That means there isn't any sleep for me at all if i choose to go on this routine. I must admit that I didn't do the pump every single time, especially in the middle of the night.

    In the last two days, DS did the cluster feeding and that's exhausting. I constantly put him on my breast and he hardly gets enough. At some points, i had DH gave him the full bottle, he still refused to sleep and asked for breast or bottle time every 15 mins!

    My mom suggested me to purely pump and put the breast milk to the bottle. DH also starts to think its as a good idea. BUT i feel sad to let go and skin to skin contact. Even with pumping, I don't produce much. 20ml--40ml depends on when i feed him. Generally, I have more in the morning.

    I am about to give up BF. I was hoping to at least go to 4 months. Now, i don't even know i can hang onto until 1 month. I have never thought of BF will be a problem. When do you decide to let go?

  2. #2
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    It's up.to you truly. But on my years of breastfeeding there are a few things I'd like to elaborate on.

    Motilium needs to be taken 3x a day and takes 3-5 days to come into effect.

    Cluster feeding happens to all mums. I have a good supply and still my 2wk old cluster feeds every bloody day for 2-5hrs. It's annoying esp as its in the evening and I have 2 older kids who need to be bathed and fed and then put to bed. Dh works interstate as well. But it the only thing that will bump up my milk. So I plonk on the couch and feed feed feed. Quick break then feed feed feed.

    Are you drinking enough water? Oats and a half strength beer is great for milk supply. Or a Guinness.

    Being honest here. If you want to give up bf then its truly your decision and your decision only. But if you wish to continue pls hit up this forum.

    Another thing... With pumping. Not every woman can pump. Babies are far more efficient. Is bub having enough wet/poopy nappies? It's normal for newborns to feed 30-90mins in those first few weeks. It doesnt mean you have a low supply. It just means bub likes to feed.
    Last edited by Rose&Aurelia&Hannah; 22-10-2015 at 19:13.

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  4. #3
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    What u pump is not an indication of how much milk u are producing. Your bubs feeding schedule sounds pretty normal for a newborn to me.

    Id drop the formula and give him breast only personally otherwise it will affect ur supply. Bubs is trying to establish ur supply with his crazy cluster feeding. Its is normal.

    Trust your body. Very few women truly don't produce enough milk. I guarantee if u stick it out u won't regret it. Give it some time.

    All the best!!

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    gingermillie  (22-10-2015)

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    I breastfed twins for a year and couldn't pump more than a drop! It is definitely not an indication of supply. I know that's only one part of your question but wanted to share in case it reassures you in some way.

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    misskittyfantastico  (22-10-2015),SoThisIsLove  (22-10-2015)

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    Have you seen a good community lactation consultant? Work out what you'd like them to help you achieve and go from there. Other previous posters have great points

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    Hi @bbhope the only things I will add are:
    - my bub was very sleepy feeding for a good few weeks, I think this is normal
    - I had cluster feeding until about week 6-7. It would last 4-6 hours and she'd be on/off constantly. This coincided with her being very upset due to reflux and me misinterpreting her upset for hunger and constantly putting her on to feed. Losec fixed this for us.
    - pumping amount is not the same as what bub takes. I'd be getting bub on the boob as much as possible to increase your supply and where possible try not to rely on top-ups of formula or ebm. I know that you need to be careful nutrition wise but it can be a vicious cycle of poor supply=more top up=less supply to eventually no more BF. Bub on the boob is what you need for a good week to really see where you're at supply-wise. Keep working with the lactation consultant.
    - how is bubs weight tracking?
    - is bub always hungry when it seems he wants feeding constantly/not satisfied? Seems like a silly question but may be looking for comfort suck or may have something else going on (esp if cue is crying)
    - only you will know when it's right for you and bub to stop. Your mental health and wellbeing is important here too. It's great you've persevered so far it is bloody hard work to feed, top-up and express. I did this for 3 weeks then gave away the top-up and expressing. Bub has put on 3kg in 16 weeks!!

  10. #7
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    Is it important for you to BF? As in would it make you feel unhappy to stop?

    I'm just asking because if it's not that important for you I think I'd let go and move onto formula.
    So that you can more time to sleep and enjoy your bub rather than worrying about all the pumping etc.

    Now if BF is important to you there are solutions as other PP have advised.

    But don't feel like you have to BF. No one can tell the difference between a toddler that has been BF and one that was FF ;-)

    All that matters is what YOU want.

    Happy mum happy bub!

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  12. #8
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    It's such an incredibly personal decision.
    While everything you've mentioned is common in the early few weeks it's entirely your choice.
    TBH, pumping and topping up is a pain in the bum! I pumped for my third who was premature for close on five months. I think the advice you've been given in terms of what you can express equalling your supply is correct and I also wonder what your expectations were/are of breastfeeding? My own experience was that they are permanently attached for quite some time!
    But above all else, if you're done, you're done! It's all about what works for you and your new family.

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    babyla  (26-10-2015)

  14. #9
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    My milk took about 10 days to properly come in. I too had a lactation consultant and was doing the BF, top up, pump thing at every feed, every 3 hours. And cheering when I got 20ml. But persistence paid off for me. My supply definitely increased and I knew this because my breasts became suddenly huge and warm and swollen and before I knew it bub had no need for top ups.
    And I was then able to freeze my pumped milk which got up to 150ml at one stage. Are you using an electric pump?

    If you can get your partner to do the top up feeds (and burping/changing/settling) that allows you to go straight to pumping and straight to sleep/rest.

    My MCHN told me you have 6 weeks to establish breastfeeding. So if it's not quite working at 2 weeks you still have so much time to establish your milk supply. Persistence will pay off.

    However as others have said, if it's really getting you down and you want to stop don't feel pressured to continue. It is really hard work those first few weeks and you need to look after yourself too.

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  16. #10
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    I don't know what I am expecting at this point. Before the birth, I was expecting textbook case of BF until bub feels satisfied and falls asleep. The duration would be like 1 hr feed time and 1--2hr sleep time. That's what they have been telling us since day 1 at the hospital. In real life, bub is now asking feed every 30 mins to an hr with or without top up. Each full feed takes 1--2hrs. My friends said that's normal. Thus, I think the textbook has set us on a wrong expectation.
    @gingermillie: Sometime he did ask nipples for comfort. He sucks and falls asleep. I don't know what to do with it. I am not sure if he has reflux but he spills milk with bottle top up when we try to fill him up completely. He has wind problem.

    Anyhow, like this morning, I clearly had milk and he fell asleep on each breast. When I put him down, he made a fuss within few mins. I put him on the other breast and continue. He didn't seem full and the cycle continue on the restless sleep.

    I am going back to work in 3 months time. I will try to take more time off. So the BF won't last long. I guess the only reasons I continue BF is to let DS have some immunity and me having that precious skin to skin contact.


 

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