Sunday, May 2, 2010

Breast is Best?

I can’t believe I’m actually thinking this, after all the hard work and trauma I went through to make breast feeding work…. but I’m contemplating weaning.
This week (I know, only a week) Pebble has been waking at 3.30am every morning for a suckle, even if she was *just* fed within the hour. She has a little suck for five or ten minutes, then falls back to sleep.
So, what? Well, it’s all well and good if she’s actually feeding, but I feel like a human dummy when she wakes me up just for this. I tried using a dummy instead, tried rocking her to sleep and resettling her, but she was having none of it. Perhaps it will pass.
How will weaning help this? To be honest, I don’t know….
On top of that I’ve woken up in the night with blocked ducts *again*. It’s happened twice before, but it cleared instantly when I located the blockage. This time I can’t find it and it’s getting more and more painful. I’m trying hot compresses, different feeding positions and pumping, but so far it’s not going away.  My next try is a hot shower and massage, but I’m getting desperate. Hopefully it won’t develop into mastitis.
Aside from that, as much as I love her (and I really, really do), I would like to have a bit more flexibility, and be able to be away from her for more than a couple of hours. Expressing has never worked well for me, so to keep up the breast feeding I need to be accessible to her every two to three hours during the day time.
I think I’m just feeling tired, and a bit run down. I feel like I want my body back, just a little. And I feel so guilty for it.
Do you have any pearls of wisdom for me?


  1. Hmm, I have no kids so can't really offer you any advice. All I know is you definitely shouldn't feel guilty about it. Parenting comes in all shapes and forms and breastfeeding is not for everyone. Not for a lot of women, from what I understand. Your baby will do better with a happy, healthy Mum - breastfeeding or not.

  2. There's absolutley nothing to feel guilty about breastfeedimg can be exhausting. It takes a toll on your whole body and can really effect your mental state. I can't tell you how many times I felt like a dairy cow and wanted to give up. Everybody has a dfferent journey.

    Things to try- have you try supplementing the feed with a bottle you could try breast and formula to see if it makes a difference.
    Maybe try dostancing yourself from the situation for a while, forced seperation. Getting hubby to feed her and see how she goes, get some decent sleep and recharge your batteries.

    No matter what happens you'll make the right decision for you.

  3. I hear you! I have just weaned as you know - and you know what? She still wakes in the night but now I have to make up bottles and sit there feeding her which takes far longer. Breast in the middle of the night is easy, comforting, relaxing and while it is tiring all of this is. Try and soak up the last bit of baby because I swear to you in a flash you will have this big 1 year old with teeth and eating food. Hang in there. That's my 10 cents for what it's worth!

  4. Flynn is 4 months old now and although he consistently sleeps through the night, he still feeds every 2 hours through the day - so i can appreciate the whole feeling like a dairy cow thing. I've had days here and there where i wish i had my body to myself again but then i stop and think how breast milk, and the physical closeness with me so often, is the best start in life he can possibly have. That keeps me going.
    And as BabyMac said, weaning may not stop her waking during the night - it will just mean a bit more work.Good luck!

  5. Oh, I totally understand this feeling you have and I think you are well entitled to do whatever you choose. But I will say that it sounds like your little angel is developing a feed to sleep association and stopping with the feeding isn't necessarily going to change that.

    The flexibility thing is something I totally get and you should be able to skip a feed every now and again to give you some much needed "you" time.

    Good luck!


  6. Oh this sounds like me both times! I think these feelings are completely normal. Three months in and you are utterly exhausted, living through sleep deprivation and it's hard having a little person so dependent on you ALL the time.

    I ended up on the same wavelength as BabyMac....there were many times I wanted to give up with it but at the end of the day I didn't want to fully awake in the middle of the night making bottles, was just easier to flop a boob out and then get back to bed for me....and so I kept going. It's not easy either way, so do whatever will make YOUR situation easier/better, but do know too, your feelings are normal and it is possible to keep pushing on if you want to.

  7. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences, advice and for just being there to bounce my brain off of. It is such a wonderful thing to have all these people out there to share with, and who care enough to take the time to try and help.
    I'm feeling a little brighter today, the sun is peeking through the grey skies of this little problem.
    At the moment I'm persisting, I think I'll feel a lot better about it all in a couple of days. And if I don't, that's ok too.


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