Friday, October 17, 2008

What I don't like about breastfeeding
First & foremost, let me reiterate the fact that I'm a huge proponent for breastfeeding. If it didn't come easy for us, I would still do anything & everything I could to make it work out. I wouldn't quit very easily. With that being said & in the spirit of keeping it real, there are things about breastfeeding that I don't like:

I don't like that I have a fast letdown & have practically drowned my children when they eat. Carter is able to keep up a little more, but still. He's had to pull off a few times to catch his breath, choke or let his stomach settle a bit before going back for more. When he comes off, there is a spray of milk everywhere & if I'm not carefully paying attention with the burp cloth, it ends up all over his head, all over me, the couch or bed or wherever we are sitting. It's gross. Which leads me to my next point...

I don't like that I leak so much. There are times that I go through two or three shirts a day, even when I'm wearing the super absorbent overnight protection nursing pads that I change frequently throughout the day (which are often full). If Carter ends up sleeping in a longer stretch missing a two to three hour nursing session, I end up drenched in milk, so much that I have to change my pajama's & sleep in a wet spot on the bed. Yuck.

I don't like that I get so sore from the constant nursing sessions. It would be great if my nipples could get a break every now & then. But that means I would have to pump, which means...

I don't like that if I want a break from nursing, I have to pump. I will not pump. I hate it. It's stressful & time consuming & very annoying. Maybe it wouldn't be so bad if I had a super-duper industrial strength pump, but I don't. I don't like that if I had to pump, I would have to spend an ungodly amount of money on a decent pump to make it worth my while.

I don't like that there is still a stigma with ignorant people regarding breastfeeding & it's either suggested that I hide away from everyone to nurse Carter (this happened with Logan too) or implicated that I should be ashamed of it. It's a societal stress that's certainly unnecessary. Fortunately, this doesn't happen often, but it's irritating that it happens at all.

There are many, many more reasons why I love nursing but in life, there are good & bad parts to everything. These complaints are just "annoyances" more than anything.


Kayce said...

Those are exactly the same frustrations I've had with breastfeeding. I STILL wake up in a wet spot if he doesn't eat well right before bed, over a year later. It's been worth it, of course, but I am starting to look forward of having my boobs back, getting to wear sexy bras again, not having to feed him right before I shower...I could go on. I'm glad you're sticking with it even through frustration, though; you'll be glad you did.

Jen said...

If you call the hospital, or talk to your OB, you can usually rent a pump from the hospital, or get a perscription for one from a medical supply company. I used an ameda brand hospital grade pump from the hospital for 20 bucks a month.

ReDinkyDink said...

Nursing is hard - very hard. However, I found your experience different than mine. I nursed my first baby (with all the same complaints you have except the drowning part) but I won't be able to nurse this second one.

Maybe knowing that in advance and realizing the bond that I will miss, I'm more aware of the pro-breastfeading stuff out there. It's everywhere and if I mention that I cannot breastfeed, people want to know why. I feel like the odd one out, but then I live in Texas, where nursing moms are a totally normal sight and if you're bottle feeding, people look at you like you're not a good mom.

Anonymous said...

To help with the soreness from the constant nursing, and to perhaps also help with the "drowning effect," you may want to buy a nipple shield. It's made of a clear silicone. Helped relieve some of my problems. The baby's sucking isn't as powerful when you use it. Medela makes one that they sell at Babies R Us and Target. Here is a link for the Medela brand, but I'm sure there are other brands that work just as well:

Anyway, just thought that I'd let you know. This was a cheap fix for me and a lifesaver during the early months. I didn't even use it at every session, but it gave my nipples a chance to heal a little.