Too soon to be giving up?

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Sarah D
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Too soon to be giving up?

Post by Sarah D » Fri Nov 09, 2012 8:20 am

my little one is just over 4 weeks old and is my first baby. We have both had a fairly rocky road when it comes to bf. She struggled early on with attatchment due to a tongue tie and as a result i had too feed her with a shield due to nipple damage. After a while it was even too painful with the shield. While we waited to have the tie snipped she was geting 100% ebm becuase it was simply too painful to feed and i would constantly end up in tears. So it was long days and nights for everyone while my husband fed her with the bottle and i would express at every feed. And as a result of only being able to express, i ended up with mastitis. She has since had her tie snipped and feeding instantly became better....but only for 2 feeds and then it became painful again, i have had the local counsellor here to help and make sure everything is being done right, and it is by both of us. We have tried every position under the sun, and her attatchment is perfect according to the counsellor, but it still has me in tears to feed her.

I missed out on the experience of a natural birth because after 19hrs i had to have an emergency c-section. I wanted so badly to bf so i could at least share that special bond with my little girl, but i fear that i am at the end of my tether. Is it me and am i giving up on her too soon?

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Post by Loli&Lulu » Fri Nov 09, 2012 9:21 am

Firstly, huge hugs to you, what a difficult time you've had.

I don't have experience with tounge tie but with both my daughters I had pain when I fed them until 6 or 7 weeks of age when it got better. I also had c sections and was determined to persevere with breastfeeding and I'm glad I did. I went on to feed my first daughter until she self weaned at 19 months when I was pregnant.

However feeding isn't supposed to be painful long term and there is definitely more to being a good mother than breastfeeding and if it is affecting your enjoyment of your daughter, you may want to consider your options as a family.

But in my experience it can get better as they get a little bit bigger. Would it help you to set small goals rather than worrying about the long term? Tell yourself that it could get better in two weeks (which it could) and then reassess at that point?

For some reason my least painful feeding position is lying on the bed - not sure why - but you may like to try it if you haven't already.

I hope things get easier for you one way or another really soon. Hugs again, it's hard this mummy thing!
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Post by Carrie » Fri Nov 09, 2012 9:27 am

Oh, Sarah, what a difficult beginning you have had! Well done for persevering so far and giving your baby 4 precious weeks of breastmilk. Whatever comes next, no-one can take that achievement away from you.
Its really hard to answer you Sarah. Only you know when you are at the end of your tether - our tethers tend to come in varying lengths!
Its not too late for everything to come right. Your baby is still very young and her instincts are strong. It helps to have had those 2 good feeds and to know what breastfeeding should feel like. It doesn't matter how good your attachment looks from the outside, if it doesn't feel right, its not right...unless...has anyone spoken to you about nipple thrush? Its not uncommon after a course of antibiotics, but is usually easily treated. That might be something to chat to your pharmacist about. Its very painful and no amount of correct attachment will improve it. Does the nipple shield help with this pain?
Another thing you might like to research is 'baby led attachment' - one of the girls might be able to find you a link for this. It can be amazingly helpful for babies 'relearning' how to breastfeed after a difficult start. Good luck Sarah, I hope you can find a way through this so that you can enjoy pain free breastfeeding.
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Re: Too soon to be giving up?

Post by breastfeedingisnormal » Fri Nov 09, 2012 10:05 am

Sarah D wrote: She has since had her tie snipped and feeding instantly became better....but only for 2 feeds and then it became painful again, i have had the local counsellor here to help and make sure everything is being done right, and it is by both of us.
You are totally not giving up too soon, if that is what you want to do. Others have given some reassurance that things can get better over time - but if you don't have time, you just don't. The only other thing that I can think of is that sometimes TTs get divided and then they heal back together again. Could you take her back to whoever did the division and ask them to check whether the frenulum has healed back together instead of apart. If it has, another snip - and some daily exercises (rubbing the division site with a clean, gloved finger) can help to keep it apart.
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Post by danigirl » Fri Nov 16, 2012 10:29 pm

Sounds like a horrible start. We had tongue tie and thrush (and some other stuff) - for me it got better from 11 weeks. Getting the tongue tie snipped made it so that she could maintain her suck but we still had attachment issues, and then thrush. Getting the right thrush treatment was for me the turning point. (But on the upside, after this time we have had an awesome time with breastfeeding, and with my second I had some mild discomfort for 3 weeks or so while we got the attachment right, but really hardly any issue)

Having cracked nipples is so incredibly stressful as not only is it dreadfully painful, but you are just worrying all the time it is hurting that your nipples are getting even more damaged. So sorry you are going through this.

You sound really concerned about whether or not you need to stop trying. Maybe seeing a lactation consultant for their opinion could help you to feel like you have made the right decision for you whichever way you decide to go.

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