Posted on May 6, 2011

Vita’s Breastfeeding Experience

breastfeeding/ Guest post

The lovely Vita from http://goriamifamily.blogspot.com/ is on the blog with her breastfeeding experience today! Well done Vita for perserving – my experience is very similar to yours! If it hadn’t been for the internet and trying different things myself I would have given up when he was tiny – but thank fully we are still going strong at 9 months xx

I remember the days before Boo was born in 2008, and all the excitement, I couldn’t wait to start feeding him in the most natural way in the world, I wanted to breast feed.

I had a fairly traumatic birth, which was prolonged. Within minutes of Boo being born though, he’d latched on, hoorah! It hurt, the midwife stood there and said it shouldn’t hurt, and yanked him and me around into ‘best position’ but it still hurt.

I came out of hospital the same day, it was stupidly busy and in fact I was shoved onto an ante-natal ward with Boo, and listening to women in the early stages of labour was fairly disturbing as all I wanted to do was sleep and all Boo wanted to do was feed.

At home, I was more relaxed, but rapidly becoming exhausted by the 20 minute feeds every 45minutes, I couldn’t do anything and I remember crying as all Boo seemed to do was cry constantly and something didn’t feel quite right. My midwife was great and really supportive, on day 5 she realised something was really not right, in the time she was with me Boo had “Fed” twice and yet was still unsettled.

She asked if she could see me express some milk by hand, so I tried, and about two drops of milk rolled out, my milk just wasn’t there. I got put on tablets to increase my milk and it worked temporarily, but as soon as the tablets stopped so did my milk. I had no choice to make, Boo had to go on formula. I felt such a failure, the most natural thing in the world and I couldn’t do it. I tormented myself wondering why it hadn’t worked, especially when a Doctor raised their eyebrows at me when I said he was formula fed. About 3months later i was diagnosed with a thyroid problem, which I was told could well have contributed to my inability to produce enough milk. He is now 2 1/2 and a very strong and healthy boy!

When I fell pregnant with Baby G, I was determined to give breast feeding another try, but worried that I may have the same problems again, or worse my medication may mean breast feeding was inadvisable. I spoke to the midwife, and she advised me to talk to my consultant, he was wonderful and filled me with confidence that it would all be OK and if I wanted to breastfeed I’d be able to.

Baby G, did not feed for hours in the hospital, I kept trying, and he was not interested in the slightest! I started to get anxious, did this mean he’d need formula to? Mr G calmed me down and told me to stay positive, and finally Baby G latched on!

The midwife visited the following day and again pulled me into ‘best position’ which hurt..but I continued to try. On day 5 Baby G had lost more than 10% of his weight and the midwife phoned the hospital for advice as “she had to” but the hospital were very positive and reminded me that breastfed babies are a little different as Mummy’s milk can take a while to come in. I cried for an hour, and felt very pathetic, then turned to the Internet for help.

I found videos on breast feeding positions, and realised that the positions the midwives were trying to put me in didn’t work for us, I needed to adjust it. After a few minutes I had got Baby G latched on, and most importantly there was pressure but no pain, I didn’t know whether it was right or wrong but I had to try it.

On Day 10, they were delighted with his weight gain, and I had to point out my discovery and alteration of feeding position (which they then insisted on observing).
In honesty, it took 6 weeks for everything to settle, and until 10 weeks for Baby G to stop being lazy and not need feet tickling to keep him awake!

I have had several clashes with health care workers along the way to Baby G now being 16weeks and still fully breast fed, at every hurdle their answer has been ‘formula feed’ but I’m so proud that I struggled through as it is like second nature now and so much easier than getting up to make a bottle in the middle of the night!! The problem i have now is his first tooth is through..ouch…any comments on stopping biting are very welcome!!

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