Torn About Continuing To Bf Or Stop

15 Replies
MNMOM - September 24

My son is 3 months old and I had planned to bf until he is 6 months. Thing is, I feel like I am not producing enough milk, like he is hungry an hour after I feed him... I am supplementing with formula...I am losing my motivation to pump at work....I'm questioning if I am already drying up anyway because I last fed him at 8:30 last night, it is now 7:43 in the am and I am not leaking or in any pain like I assume I should be...this is my second baby so maybe my br___ts are just better adjusted this time around and it doesn't mean I have supply issues?? I don't know, I feel so guilty if I stop bfing and don't know how to decide. Your thoughts and experiences are appreciated, I am agonizing over this!

 

lily10 - September 24

MNMOM- I don't have much advise but I just want you to know I am in the same boat. I start work this Wednesday and I will be away from my daughter for 11+ hours at a time. I have no idea how I am going to keep up with the pumping schedule. I decided to start supplementing with formula while she is at daycare and DH will give her all the pumped bottles (he is the one that will be doing the drop off and pick up). My goal was also to BF for 6 months and we are at 3 now and I do plan to continue to pump till she is 6 months old but I am not looking forward to it at all. To be honest I am overwhelmed with everything right now, going back to work and leaving her, being a pumping machine, and just plain worried and guilt ridden over everything. I hear that your supply will adjust to your baby so maybe your supply is adjusting and you are still producing enough for his feedings. When you do pump how many ounces are you getting? I would stick with b___stfeeding for as long as possible, that is my plan. If I get to a point where I am just plain miserable and stressed then I will stop but at this point I'm not sure how I will adjust. I may adjust to working and pumping just fine and I'm trying to remain positive. Sorry for the ramble, I just wanted you to know you are not alone with your feelings of guilt, I feel the same way.

 

Kristin72 - September 24

I totally understand your situation. You must commend yourself for lasting as long as 3 months. Remember that any b___st milk is better than none. If your baby is still hungry 1 hour after you feed him just remember that he is growing at a rapid pace and probably is trying to increase your supply. Only you can decide what is right for you. If it seems more of a ha__sle for you then do what you can until you dry up. If you are determined to keep things going there are ways like pumping more often, letting baby nurse and graze or pacify on your b___b to increase your prolactin levels. You could also try a drug called domperidome..which can help increase supply or you could do it herbally with fenugreek or milk thistle and anise. You baby is still very young. I am still nursing my nine month old but in Canada we have a year off from work..so we are very fortunate and I think the babies appreciate this too! Don't guilt youurself because formula does have it's benefits too and you have given a good effort already... best of luck on your decision.

 

MNMOM - September 24

thanks girls, I really appreciate your thoughts. With my first son, I took 12 weeks off, and then when I went back to work he was at a daycare a few blocks away from me so I left work twice a day to go nurse him for that first month I was back to work. I think I am just burning out faster now because I came back to work after only 8 weeks, and I commute an hour each way, so that means I am having to pump 3 times a day. It gets old fast! I am exhausted all the time. I think I am going to stick it out a bit and see if I can get over this little hurdle. He might just be in a huge growth spurt right now, and I am going to trust that my body is capable of feeding him and I am not going to stress about having to supplement. (I had to start supplementing with my first son at 16 weeks, pumping just doesn't keep up the supply the same I think) My son just turned 16 weeks yesterday, so all things considered I am going to try to stay positive that things are still going ok. I have been getting 5-8 ounces each time I pumped (depended how long I went in between) so I think I just need to stay motivated to pump, even though it is a huge PIA.

 

DB - September 24

MNMOM-great job...I understand! My dd is almost 8 months and we are in the process of weaning...it's sad...I don't want to, but I have been pumping at work for 5 months now and my supply is diminishing...she got frustrated...I got frustrated...she likes bottles now, so I am nursing her in the a.m. and the rest of the time it's bottles. I'm pumping 1x at work, 1x before work, and once before I go to bed. I have lots of frozen milk, but I also have this guilty feeling...I wanted to make it to 10 months. I guess you have to do what works for your situation. I totally understand how you feel..I feel like all i do in the evening is wash b___st pump parts and bottles...fun!!! Your amounts sound great though!! Good luck in your decision :)

 

MNMOM - September 25

DB- thanks for your thoughts. You said exactly how I feel - FRUSTRATED. All the work to pump and bf, and then not having enough anyway makes me feel very inadequate and incapable. I last fed my son at about 7:30 last night and I pumped at 7:30 this morning and only got 6 ounces. I would have expected 8. (I don't think my b___sts can hold more than that 8 oz anyway!) Yes I should have pumped before bed, but I spent from 8 until 10 doing dishes and folding laundry, things that I am far behind on. I usually try to be in bed by 9, because I get up every morning at 4:45am. I am tired and still behind on house work, etc. I feel like I can't do it all and I can't win at anything right now. My goal is to continue bf, and to do it as much as I can fit in, and try not to stress about it. UGH.

 

wailing - September 29

I totally understand u about the stress!! I am at 3 months now and about to return to work and school soon and I am wondering how the heck I'm going to continue b'feeding. I hate pumping. It's like a vicious cycle. U need milk so u pump but stress out about getting enough. Then the stress makes u produce and pump less milk.....on and on and on. U would think that at this day and age u would have better and quieter and smaller b___st pumps!!!!!!!!!

 

MNMOM - September 29

WELL girls, my b___stfeeding is coming to an end. I have cried several nights over the guilt of this. I need to refocus that energy into positive areas I know. I am just not making enough milk and the stress of that is killing me and surely not helping. I am lucky if I get 4 ounces in 12 hours. My body is just shutting down. I feel betrayed by my own body. THis sucks. sorry for venting, but my dh certainly doesn't understand "what all the fuss is about".

 

bcaoyagi - September 29

Are you sure that you are not pregnant again? My milk supply went way down and my son weened himself and I had to suppliment. Than when my period didn't come back I went to the dr and I was 12 weeks pregnant. Just a thought!!!

 

MNMOM - September 29

Well, it would be a miracle if I were pregnant, my son is only 3.5 months old and my period hasn't returned, not to mention that both of my pregnancies were fertily a__sisted. I just don't understand why with my last baby I didn't have this issue? Is it really affected that much by stress? I am so unhappy :(

 

wailing - September 29

Have u thought about taking the herbal fenungrek pills to help up ur milk supply? Also, I put my lo down at 8pm and usually don't do a feed until 6-7am and my b___st don't hurt or get engorged anymore...but I still have enough milk. Like I said earlier, I've never had great luck pumping but ds is thriving. Maybe ur milk isn't as low as u think? I could do what u can until u completely dry up, try the pills, or if u think it's best u should stop. U should be enjoying this time...don't feel guilty about it:-(

 

wailing - September 29

Oops...I meant "I would do what u can until ur milk dries up". Any milk is better then none. And as for men understanding...they have NO idea how hard it is to stop b'feeding:-( My ds has a fever and refused the b___st a few times. I felt like I was going to die inside. My BF walked in and said "so just give him formula..no biggie". Yhea right!!!

 

Val - September 30

hi MNMOM... sorry you are so unhappy and sad... I don't yet have experience with this (decreasing milk supply), but I do really believe that our bodies respond to stress, and it sounds like you have a lot of it, with 2 kids, work, housework, etc. I think your idea about refocusing your energy is a good one... it sounds like you have been doing all you can... and I know pumping at work is a major pain. Is your baby still hungry after 1 hour, or do you think that was a growth spurt? Mine was taking an extra ounce at each feeding for several days, plus having one extra entire feeding each day. He's slowed back down now, but I was starting to worry about keeping up. Anyway, don't beat yourself up... it sounds like you are a great mom and are doing your best for your lo.

 

MNMOM - September 30

First, let me say that you girls are the best. If I didn't have a place to vent I think I would lose my mind. Thank you all for sharing your time and thoughts with me. Yes, I think my son is in a growth spurt. Also, I talked to a lactation consultant on Saturday, and she encouraged me not to give up, to just keep nursing and pumping as much as I can, that if my body is in a slump it can and will "relactate", etc. So I am not giving up yet. I am going to try really hard this week to be faithful about pumping or feeding every 2-3 hours and see what happens. The hardest obstacle I think will be the mental one, my consultant told me I have to quit trying to be a perfectionist. She was so right on with that one.

 

DB - September 30

Good for you MNMOM! I on the otherhand am at the tail end of bf :( I got terribly sick this week and dehydrated, so it's all getting close to being over...but, I'm very happy I made it 8 months...yes, dh's just don't get it!! When I was crying my eyes out 2 weeks ago, my dh told me my dd was "a big girl now"...uh, no she's not!!! She's a baby!!! But we're all doing the best that we can for our lo's. Try not to let the stress get to you! Maybe give the fenugreek a try?!?!? I saw a slight improvement when I took it a few months ago..Good luck, again!

 

MNMOM - October 1

I'm going to go get some fenugreek today at lunch and give that a try too.

 

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