Discouraged

It’s been 8 days now since I’ve been nursing and pumping, and I’m getting really frustrated and discouraged. It looks like my milk has come in and, while Lucy nurses a minimum of 15 minutes and sometimes closer to 30 minutes, she still seems hungry afterward. And, when I pump, I’m lucky if I can get 1 ounce per side. Usually, it’s more along the lines of 1/2 ounce per side. I wonder if at this point, this is the best I will be able to do. It’s very discouraging. I suppose I should look at it as being able to provide for her a little, but I wish I could produce more.

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Hi! Iā€™m a wife to a wonderful husband, mom to a beautiful and active (to put it lightly) kiddo, and fur-mom to 3 crazy cats. Iā€™m a former journalist. I quit my full time job two years ago. Now, I am a freelance writer and a virtual assistant for several bloggers!

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Comments

  1. girl from florida says:

    Anything you produce is great for her! I’m so sorry it’s so frustrating šŸ™ I remember the pain and frustration at first, it was awful (combined with healing from childbirth especially!). I’m not sure if it really works, but I heard Fenugreek is good, and oatmeal. I ate a lot of oatmeal and animal crackers the first few months I nursed. Just remember, each time you nurse is stimulating your body to produce MORE milk because of the way the supply/demand works (I always had to think of that when I was painfully nursing at 2 am!). xo

  2. Hannah says:

    Cady, you are doing great! The amount you can pump is not indicative of what you are producing or what Lucy gets when she nurses. Babies are much more efficient suckers than pumps! Also, many babies will cluster nurse. Wanting to nurse a lot doesn’t always mean a baby is still hungry is her weight and wet/dirty diapers are fine. Newborns often cluster nurse. E-mail me if you need help! I’d love to talk to you if you want. šŸ™‚

  3. Sugar & Ice says:

    What you’re producing now is not indicative of what you’ll produce in the future if you keep at it. Like GFF said, it’s a supply and demand kind of thing, and like Hannah said, what you get when you pump isn’t always a good representation of what Lucy gets when she nurses.

  4. vein says:

    Do the best you can, but don’t let it get to you šŸ™‚ Good on you for making the effort.

  5. Kylie says:

    Cady,

    I don’t often comment here, but I thought I would this time. I hate to see Mums beating themselves up over feeding. I know that breastfeeding is important, but a healthy and happy Mum is important as well.

    The above posters are all right. Lucy is a better pump than a pump. Fenugrek is good for improving milk supply, and frequent nursing also increases supply. If possible, have a ‘nurse in’ for a couple of days. Stay in bed with Lucy, make sure that you are hydrated, feed her on demand and RELAX! Being stressed has a negative effect on milk production.

    I had very similar issues with 2 of my babies. We tried everything to fix the problem because I was so determined that they wouldn’t be formula fed. I was prepared, educated, ready and willing for it to work. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. I had the support of my husband, Dr and nurses. I gave birth at a breastfeeding friendly hospital where mothers and babies stayed for 5 days to get feeding off to a good start. It didn’t work.

    At 2 weeks with my eldest, I realised that this wasn’t going to work for our family. I was so stressed that I was in tears. Every time she cried to be fed, I would cry as well. She continued to lose weight. We switched to formula and she never looked back. Neither did I, although I cried my eyes out when I was buying that first can of formula.

    I’m telling you my story so that you know you are not alone. You need to do what is right for your family… especially for Lucy and yourself. Make sure that you have people around you who support your choice, whatever that may be.

    btw, when my second child was born, I asked everybody for ideas to prevent the issues we had. There wasn’t a single thing that anybody suggested that I hadn’t already tried the first time. I did try to breastfeed again, with the same results.

    Wishing you all the best of luck as you sort things out. Hope that they work out as you want them to,
    Kylie

  6. Kendra says:

    Hang in there sweetie. I had a terrible time nursing my first baby. Is there a lactation consultant at your hospital (Floyd in Rome did and I assume they still do)? I wasn’t aware of them when I had my first baby. He was put on formula due to jaundice and with lack of support and knowledge, I gave up nursing. I was successful with my 2nd and 3rd babies though. Sounds like you have a lot of support here too. If I can be of any help, just let me know!

  7. Caroline says:

    Hi Cady,
    I’m sorry I can’t offer any breastfeeding advice as I haven’t had a baby. I just wanted to offer my support. I know that breastfeeding is the ideal, but there are plenty of healthy and happy bottle fed babies out there! Hugs. x

  8. Barbara says:

    Very good advice here. If you are worried and stressed, it really does effect the flow of milk. I left you another comment in your post below on this topic. My story is similar to Kylie’s. Don’t be hard on yourself, whatever decision you make. You are giving it your best shot, and it all comes down to what you choose is right for you and Lucy!

  9. kami says:

    As everyone else said what you get when your pumping sometimes isn’t the same as the nursing. I could never pump and get more than an ounce on each side, pumping was very difficult for me. I did manage to breastfeed all three until 1 year of age with no supplements. Hang in there I remember crying it hurt so bad with baby #1. Lucy will do fabulous no matter what, don’t get upset!

  10. Jess says:

    I don’t know much about this stuff but I will say that you are already showing what a great and loving mom you are, not that anyone would be surprised. You will figure out a situation that works for you. Lucy is happy and healthy and I know you and Joe will be able to ensure that she stays that way. Good luck!

  11. Lisanne says:

    I’m sorry that you’re frustrated. šŸ™ Everyone gave such great advice above. I would just say to keep at it and nurse/pump as much as you can. You’re doing great!

  12. Elizabeth says:

    Cady,
    I had similar problems with my son. I thought things were going good but when he went in for his first weight check at 2 weeks he had only gained an ounce. I nursed, pumped and supplemented. Finally, when he was three months old, a lactation consultant finally brought up to me the connection of infertility and lack of milk supply. I had never realized that my infertility could affect breastfeeding but it makes sense…if your body isn’t quite sure what to do to make a baby, it might not fully be able to feed one either. Understanding this made the whole situation much easier for me. Hang in there as long as you can but don’t beat yourself up over it. šŸ™‚ My son is now 2 and I honestly don’t see how 100% breastmilk instead of 75% would have made him more perfect!!

  13. Cristy says:

    I had problems w/milk production, too. You can try fenugreek tea(find it at stores like Whole Foods) and my pediatrian even recommended a couple of beers in the afternoon. Not sure if either helped but they’re worth a try, especially the beers! They sure helped me get thru it all. I SO looked forward to my afternoon beers! Zoe nursed 5 min. on each side & I pumped & stressed she wasn’t getting enough until the doc pointed out the rolls of fat on her legs. Don’t worry about “the norm”.

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