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Breastfeeding second time round

Discussion in 'Parenting' started by clematis, Aug 23, 2011.

  1. ... Is it easier? I know everyone is different but health visitor told me it should be easier second time round. I was lucky first time and apart from a bout of mastitis, and feeding her some formula top ups occasionally, managed well. However this time I'm not going to be able to spend hours on end nursing as I did with number 1 as she's going to need my attention. Also have just realised that my boobs haven't leaked at all this time- I'm now 37 weeks! Does that mean anything?! Any helpful hints or tips from someone experienced in feeding a baby with a toddler running around will be very much appreciated, thanks x
  2. Chica77

    Chica77 New commenter

    I would say be prepared for feeling really emotional about it. I didn't find BF easy at all and was literally doing it 24/7, so my nearly 2 year old had no attention from me at all really. I used to sit on the sofa, so he could come and sit next to me and i could read to him, but he wanted me to pick him up and hug him and i couldn't, and i sat there crying my eyes out feeling like I was neglecting him.
    I had to stop BF when my baby was 6 weeks old, and just do it at night, or when my husband was home from work, and i stopped totally about 11 weeks, as i just couldn't keep it up. I think i had supply problems though and even by 6 weeks i would feed her 6 hours non-stop and have to give her a bottle just so we could leave the flat, so hopefully your experience will be much better that mine.
    My son is very active and i feel bad if i don't take him out every day, and he still had to be my priority. I still feel bad about not paying him much attention for a few weeks, and it also made him quite jealous and he used to throw things at me and his little sister.
    I think you'll just need to see how it goes. Do you have family nearby who can take your toddler out for a bit and leave you in peace?
    Good luck! It is incredibly hard work, and looking after 2 with such a small age gap is only now becoming easier at nearly 15 weeks!
  3. My second latched on immediately after he was born and I fed him for about 10 months. His brother was 2 years and 5 months when his baby brother arrived, I had one of those baby slings and got very good at feeding whilst walking around. Also made sure everything was at hand before I started to feed, books, toys, potty!!
    Good luck, hope it goes well. With two to look after not having to take bottles when you go any where and being able to feed a new baby any where made life so much easier. [​IMG]
  4. Hi,

    My lo is 9 weeks tomorrow and my dd is 2 years 2 months - i breastfed her for 16 months but had lots of problems feeding her at the beginning with poor latching, mastitis etc. Once these were sorted, it was a breeze.

    With my son, it's been a little different. First of all, I'd forgotten how sore your nipple get at the beginning - for some reason I'd thought they wouldn't hurt at all this time but they did, albeit for a week or so. Secondly, in the early weeks, it feels like you're constantly feeding but it does settle into a routine within a few weeks. I just made sure that whenever baby was asleep she had lots of attention from me and when it was time for lo's feed,I'd get her dad to take over or find her some toys to occupy her but keep her involved by asking her to find a muslin cloth or something. He has feeds about every 3 hours now and she's happy to play whilst I feed him.
  5. I suppose she means that it will be easier because you know what you are doing and have some experience this time around but I really didn't find it any easier.
    I was constantly told first time around that I was in so much pain because I must have had a bad latch initially. Considering everytime I buzzed a MW for help to feed after my c-section they just grabbed my boob and did it for me I couldn't see how this was the case but as a first time mum I believed it must have been my own fault and figured that at least it meant I could avoid it next time. Second time around I asked the MW's in hospital to check my latch...perfect. I asked the MW who visited me at home...perfect. By the time the HV came I was in the same agony and asked her to check too...perfect. I still cried at every feed for weeks, still had that horrible feeling of dread when I knew he would soon need a feed and my nipples were cracked and bleeding much worse than the first time around. Experience didn't make it any easier!
    My 2nd just didn't seem to take to BF like my 1st. Once the initial pain of the first few weeks was over she was a dream to feed but this LO was fussy, pulled off a lot, fed for hours in the evening and all through the night. I never once fed him in public even though I would feed my 1st anywhere. It was too hard to be discrete because he took so long to latch on properly and pulled off and fussed too much. I ended up expressing and feeding him that with the odd bottle of formula and counted down the days until 6 months and I could stop!! Luckily I was always able to express loads very quickly so it was actually easier to go through the sterilising, expressing etc than it was to just BF him!
    What I did find easier was that I didn't beat myself up about it all so much 2nd time around!

  6. Thanks for the responses! Pink- I was told my latch was perfect by midwives and health visitors too, but I was advised by a friend to go to a counsellor just to make sure and I'm so glad I did as latch was all wrong and as soon as she had helped me sort it, bf was lovely. I will go this time to a counsellor no matter what. I am just really concerned about neglecting LO or just not being able to manage them both. I also am getting memories of how much it hurt first time round, and I also used to dread it when she needed a feed- I'm sure once or twice I actually cried and said "No she can't possibly be hungry again!" And lots of you have had the experience where one child feeds well and the other doesn't- I'm not taking it for granted that it'll work second time round, particularly as I think this one is a boy and from what I can gather, boys seem to be trickier to feed! (Read: much lazier ;-)) Any more hints and tips much appreciated- thanks again xx
  7. Great point x
  8. Chica77

    Chica77 New commenter

    Good point! I was worse 2nd time round...my family was really worried about me as I was so unhappy about failing at BF. I still am to be honest, but i managed for 6 weeks pretty much all the time. Looking after 2 young kids with a small age gap is hard work. As you'll find out soon [​IMG]
    lol Clematis boys are lazy! My son wouldn't feed at all for about 36 hours. Then again, he's 2 now and still hardly eats.
  9. lol, thanks- I am already struggling with lovely energetic toddler, what with being the size of a house and not quite as mobile or fit as before....... surely it can't be any harder than this?! (Don't answer that one!! ;-))
  10. Chica77

    Chica77 New commenter

    It's not that bad really! I found it hard at the end of pregnancy as i wasn't sleeping well and then i was so overdue, but luckily my parents came to stay and helped out.
    It's definitely easier now that my daughter is 3 months and is more chilled. My son seems to accept her more now too and hasn't thrown something at her for a couple of weeks now! The hardest part is when i'm out and about and she needs attention and i have to look after my incredibly fast toddler too who mainly refuses to sit in his buggy seat unless you bribe him somehow!
    My husband works shifts and when he's on lates and not home until 10pm I find that tough as i have to do dinner, bath and bed for both of them on my own. There is no way i could've continued BF the way it was going. I think it's just me though, i'm sure you'll be fine.
  11. I'm on my own quite a lot as OH works away- he's away next week for a whole week! :-(
  12. Chica77

    Chica77 New commenter

    Oh, rubbish! How long is he having for paternity leave? I was lucky as mine took 2 weeks then added 2 weeks of annual leave, and then my mum came and helped for a few days.
    Do you have family close by? My parents live 280 miles away unfortunately, but I have been to stay with them 3 times in 15 weeks!
  13. undiwear

    undiwear New commenter

    The second time round I found a sling invaluable. My newborn lived in it during waking hrs and then we co-slept at night. I just tried to leave no more than a 2 hr gap between feeds offering her to feed during the day. I found that I couldn't go 2 hrs between breaks anyway. At the time my husband was also working overseas (was only home for a week after the birth) and all my relatives live abroad and MIL is incapacitated.
    It can be done. it isn't hard to learn to feed in a sling either so it is easy to feed while in the park or shopping or walking down the street when they are squishy and tucked up in a stretchy wrap or similar.
    Some parents recommend preparing a special toy basket/box which only comes out at feeding times when stuck in the house. a few new (read charity shop) books, cars, jigsaws, games, videos, colouring pens and paper, snacks etc gives them something different to do. Also this is when cbeebies comes into its own. Don't guilt too much telly watching. This phase doesn't last long at all.

  14. lucchese

    lucchese New commenter

    What sling would you recommend undiwear? I have the kari me but never tried breastfeeding in it, and LO didn't really like it till he could face outwards. What would be a good option for the first few weeks? Did you end up getting another sling Clematis?
    Clematis' point about boys being harder to feed may well have some truth in it: a friend of mine couldn't breastfeed her first (boy) encountering all sorts of problems and switched to formula early on, but her second (girl) is so easy, in her words. I found it incredibly hard with my son but persevered for 15 months, this next one is a boy too... but at least I have some experience now :)
    The worst fear for me is jealousy as my son clings to me like glue at the moment and won't let me give anyone or anything else my attention (can't even read a book for example). We will be watching a lot of cbeebies no doubt, it will be the only option as I will be glued to the sofa :)
  15. undiwear

    undiwear New commenter

    A Kari-me should be v. good. Have you ever been to a slingmeet? www.slingmeet.com I think it is useful to have someone with a lot of experience help with wraps, ask specific questions while trying it out and to observe how other mums use them. I'll link a video below which should be helpful in tying a wrap with a newborn and how to breastfeed in one. I think that the first few times you try out a sling is to put a content and/or sleepy baby in one. A beginner mistake is also to tie it too loosely or too low. You want it to be quite snug. You can't make it too snug; rememeber how tight it would have been in the womb. The main safety guidelines are: a. to have his head tilted a little bit backwards (to keep the airways open and this is why leaving a baby in a carseat which then clicks into a pushchair frame is not very safe), b. his spine straight (wrapping firmly will see to that) and c. his legs all scrunched up like a frog the way they keep them sort of akimbo then it should be comfortable for him and you. About how high to wrap him on your body: high enough to kiss the top of his head when you just lower your chin.

    I found with trying to keep a toddler involved with the baby very helpful for them to not feel left out. Send them on several trips to get nappy, wipes, clothing, coat, shoes etc. Have him 'help' to bathe (getting bath toys, pouring water with a little cup on his body and legs, even cuddle in bed next to the baby to help him go to sleep, help to 'dress'. Children are nosy about babies and satisfy their curiousity even if it is bringing you to near panic inside and a 5 min task takes 15 mins... Well it fills your day and his and you get to praise him in front of others at how helpful to you and loving to his baby brother.

    Having my newborn in a wrap also made it possible to carry my 3.5 yr old at the time when my poor dd1 had a cast on her leg when dd2 was born. This brought a different set of problems from chasing around a mobile toddler when also coping with a newborn and a DH in the Middle East.



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