More About Breasts

It’s amazing how something so natural can go so wrong. Many of you may remember my struggles to get Baby Sierra to nurse and latch. Now it’s Baby Brooke’s turn to have issues. I have a lot of milk. I also have a forceful let down. Nursing was going wonderfully for Brooke’s first month. Then my supply peaked – baby Brooke was choking and gagging. Since then she’s developed a nursing style to control the flow – pulling/pushing off, not completely latching on etc… It’s getting painful – and it’s incredibly noisy. She’s clicking as she loses her latch. slurp, slurp, slurp, click, click, click… slurp, click, slurp, click…. Arrrgh! So embarrassing when we’re out in public and painful too.

Yesterday we went to the breastfeeding clinic at our local hospital in an effort to get some help and figure out how we can do this more discreetly. The Lactation Consultant (LC) observed our “style” and made several suggestions. She said to hold Brooke in a cross-cradle hold, cup my breast with the other hand then when Brooke opens her mouth draw her in quickly, then when I let down, pull her off, then put her back on, let her nurse on that side then switch sides….. Ummm yeah – I’m a shy nurser, how on earth am I suppose to go anywhere with that kind of a nursing style? Not only that – but how do you do that with a rambunctious toddler with you?

The thing I don’t get, is if nursing is so natural, then why is it so freaking hard? Why haven’t either one of my babies come by it naturally? Oy! I hope Baby Brooke outgrows this issue she’s having soon. As a result of her nursing style, she’s gaining weight slowly (9 lbs 12 oz – 10th percentile) and not pooping very often (every 3-6 days), signs that she may not be getting enough. I beg to differ ’cause I know I have more to offer her, but when I try she just licks my breast and smiles at me. It’s kind of like the saying: You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. In the mean time I’m still trying to do all of the suggestions (in the comfort of my own home) and will be going back to the hospital next Thursday for Brooke to be weighed in.

2 thoughts on “More About Breasts

  1. Breast feeding can really suck. (get it? suck?!)

    NO, seriously, it was way more difficult than I ever anticipated. Good for you, for persevering.

  2. Oversupply and overactive letdown can be so difficult to deal with. I dealt with it for 5 months with my second. I pretty much didn’t go out of the house except for quick jaunts between feedings, since on my right side I had to almost always nurse lying down, since she’d sputter and choke and then refuse to nurse that side, leading to 3 bouts of mastitis.

    It’s great that you’re getting help, though. My LC recommended pumping on that side until after the letdown, then trying to get the baby to latch. A little cumbersome, to be sure, but perhaps a trick you might be able to try.

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