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I didnt really try brestfeeding with my first child because I felt uncomfortable and awkward with the whole thing of my baby on the breast. But since then, I've had a lot of friends breastfeed, they liked it and had a lot of positive things to say about it. I'm having a new baby on the 20th and am getting nervous that I may not give it a full try. I'm afraid of becoming uncomfortable again and backing out . How do I mentally prepare for success?
First of all Congrats on your soon to be new arrival! My son is 3 months old and I have been nursing him with hopes to continue for the first year. I have two other children and at the time felt the exact way you do now. It seemed akward and I was always thinking it would tie me down from doing what I needed to do for my other children. But what a wonderful, beautiful experience it has been! I instantly bonded with my son. There is a connection there that no one can take part in and that is truly the beauty of it all. The other great thing about it, you don't have to worry about warming bottles in the middle of the night, and you don't have to worry about making a bottle when out in public. It will take time for you and your baby to adjust to breastfeeding. I would say it took me about 4 weeks to really get the hang of things. More than once I almost gave up, but all I did was think about my baby and remind myself nursing is the most healty thing I can do for him. Also, while your in the hospital you will have a visit by a lactation consultant whom will be willing to answer all your questions, so don't be afraid to ask. It takes dedication, so hang in there and remember there is nothing to feel guilty about if you decide not to breastfeed. It's more important that you give your baby all the love and care it needs. Blessings
Perhaps it would be helpful for you to spend time around other nursing mothers. You'd get to see how comfortable they are with nursing. Also, you could hear about their experiences.
Have you been to a La Leche League meeting? Is there a breastfeeding support group at the place where you plan to deliver your baby?
Thank you for the encouragement much needed
Yes I believe we do have lactation consultants in the area, but I think my challenge comes from thinking about it and learning to be comfortable doing it. I was nervous and uncomfortable with my first son which is what I feel made me so quick to quit trying. He acted like I was trying to smother him and the nurse was the one handling him around the breast which made me extra uncomfortable. I think he sensed I didnt feel right and comfortable which is maybe why he freaked out too. But I'm getting together a plan this time. As soon as I get back from recovery from the c-section and the nurse says time to feed, I'm kicking everybody out of the room ( even dad ) lol. And plan to work with the baby and myself to be more relaxed and comfortable. I'm trying to read as many good and bad stories to try to be ready for any latch on challenges I hope not to come across.
First of all, congratulations on your pregnancy and welcome to the Similac Message Boards. I know that the idea of someone else handling your breast may seem a bit unnerving, but once your baby gets used to breast feeding, you shouldn't have that problem any more. When you are in the hospital, try focusing on your baby instead of on your breast. That helped me relax and it also helped my milk let down. Talk to lactation nurses and make sure you voice your concerns...they can be a bit more gentle and discreet if they know it bothers you. If you end up not breastfeeding though, don't beat yourself up. Just give it a good try and see how it goes. Every baby is different! So excited for you!
thank you for your encouragement and support
I breastfeed my son for the first 3 months while he was in the NICU. I recently stopped due to a severe sinus infection and the meds dried out my milk supply and that totally defeated me. However my son is 4 months now and home 2 weeks from NICU and it was my goal to have breastfeed until he was 1 yrs old. It didn't work out exactly the way i anticipated but i'm very happy that for the first 3 to 3 1/2 months he had breastmilk. It is a bonding experience like no other and I definitely appreciated the opportunity this time. I have two other sons and I had no patience or discipline to breastfeed either one of my other boys. It does take a lot of committment on your part but the benefits are so rewarding. It will help tremendously if you participate in the lactation meetings at your hospital and develop a relationship with the other moms. I found it most helpful when I had someone else to share the experience with that was feeling some of my same anxities. You can look online also for great breastfeeding tips and you will find them helpful. Hopefully you will immediately be able to nurse your baby as I pumped the entire time my son was on breastmilk. We did have our moments where I nursed him directly and it was the best feeling in the world. Good luck and if you put your heart and mind to doing it, things will work out just fine. Just know it's normal and okay to feel tired or overwhelmed at times, you will be great!
Thank you for the encouragement, and I am very happy to hear your baby son is finally home I go into the hospital tomorrow so I am getting ready to go over the info again about breastfeeding. I'm feeling nervous but as one advicer said focus on the baby and not the breast, I'm hoping that thought will help me keep from clamming up.
You must have had your little baby by now! Congrats and I hope the breastfeeding process is a smooth one for you. You got some great advice and suggestions from people on here. Just remember that you are the best person to feed your baby and have confidence in your ability to do so. It's worth it! :-)
Hello, the breastfeeding isnt going well. I think my nipples and aereola are too big for his mouth cause all he can get in his mouth is the nipple. And I felt like he wasnt getting anything like I was starving him. He would latch then stop sucking and I'd come out of his mouth and have to try to relatch him. Dad did really great trying to support the whole situation, but it's really hard to manuever baby around my breast because they are kinda big and I have to keep one hand on my breast and one the baby. I've tried pumping but that is hard too when I'm by myself cause the baby would have a need and I'd have to stop pumping dripping everywhere and soreness whew wee are they sore. I'm having a lot of mixed feelings about pumping to continue the struggle or go with formula. He's doing good on both milks, but I'm having the hard time. Thank you for checking up on us .
Have you been to a La Leche League meeting? You might find help there.
One thing that helps is to lead with the baby's chin---with your nipple pointed upward. That will help you get the assymetrical latch that you need. You do'nt need to get your entire areloa in his mouth. Getting a good latch will help decrease the soreness.
Hi Lisa and Boris.. I'm so happy that you and your family is home with your new baby. I'm sorry that breastfeeding hasn't been going as well as you liked. I know where a lot of your anxities are coming from with the whole nursing process. It's hard to try and nurse a newborn especially when you're tired and trying to recover. My son was smaller than a whole chicken because he was born at 2lbs, so my nipples were definitely bigger than his little mouth. Some of the tricks that helped me were to hold him the football postion with either a pillow underneath my arm or the boppy. Try both arms and see which feels more comfortable for you. You want to try and have a hand free so that you can help get the nipple in the baby's mouth. Also, it helped if I expressed some of the milk out of my nipples before i tried to latch him on. If you massage your breasts first and squeeze some milk out, that will help make it easier for the baby to pull. Remember it requires more work for babies to breastfeed than bottle feed, so they tend to get tired faster on the breast. The more you nurse the more milk your body will produce, and as your baby demands grow so will your milk supply. I know in the beginning it can be very overwhelming and it's a lot easier to just give the formula. Pumping is just as demanding if not more tiring than nursing. The key to pumping if you choose to do that soley is do it on a schedule. Try pumping every 3-4 hours and that way that's when your breast will fill up (or you'll feel the pressure). The soft gel packs in the breastfeeding section are great for sore nipples and the nursing cream. Good luck and know that you're not alone. Keep up the fight if you can and give yourself more time. I hope it all works out and again i've walked in your shoes so don't feel hopeless.
I wouldn't breastfeed past a year. In practice, I only breastfeed until 6 months because I was just done with it at that point and wanted my body back to myself.