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some advice please about BFing,....

So, I have been BFing since my DD was born...My supply has been decreasing over the last month or so. I spoke to my doctor today and he reassured me that it was fine to start giving her formula....For some reason, I still have this amount of guilt if I let myself dry up completely.....any advice on what you did when/if you stopped BFing???

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Asked by Anonymous at 11:38 PM on Apr. 2, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (12)
  • Why do you feel like you need to give formula? Formula is a risk that doesnt need to be taken when your very able to breastfeed. So, that said, what makes you think your supply is low?

    Answer by kate_jocelyn at 11:39 PM on Apr. 2, 2009

  • I KNOW my supply is low b/c when I work and/or pump I get MAYBE 3-4 ounces a day and know she's still hungry...I have done every supplement known to man, and that is why I am asking those that have gone thru this what they did so they didn't feel guilty..

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:41 PM on Apr. 2, 2009

  • If you feel that you need to supplement with formula don't let guilt take over. I felt guilty too but I was only making about 14 oz a day and couldn't get my supply up. I knew that my DD had to eat and that it had to come from somewhere and if Mommy couldn't do it anymore then we had to move on. Of you want to keep nursing then do so, but if you need to supplement to fill in the gaps then do that as well. Don't let guilt stop you from making sure that she has what she needs. Tell yourself that you and only you were able to provide for as long as you did and always remember that some breast milk is better then no breast milk at all.

    Answer by coala at 11:44 PM on Apr. 2, 2009

  • Oh, well then you probably dont have a low supply. Pumping is NEVER an indicator of supply. I make a LOT of milk for my daughter, but when I pump I only am able to get about 1/2 an ounce out of each side. Your baby is much more efficient at getting milk out than a pump.

    If your not pumping enough for when your away from your daughter, why dont you look into donor milk? I'm not trying to be rude, but you said you feel guilty, so i'm trying to help you be able to continue nursing.

    Answer by kate_jocelyn at 11:45 PM on Apr. 2, 2009

  • What about if you continue to breastfeed and supplement with the formula? Then you can give her your milk and not feel bad about it.
    My supply takes a major hit every time AF shows up for several days... so my son needs formula then too. I don't feel bad about it. I WOULD feel bad if I just let him cry and be hungry. There is nothing wrong with needing to feed your baby. Just do what you can!

    Answer by AmiJanell at 11:47 PM on Apr. 2, 2009

  • AmiJanell...that's what Im doing right now...Im trying to pump as much as I can and she still nurses at nite but wants nothing to do with it during the day...It's a struggle to get her to even take a bottle..She does most of her eating in the afternoon and evening. If theres too much going on she could care less.

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:50 PM on Apr. 2, 2009

  • You do what you think is best for your baby and your situation. I think breastfeeding till 2 or 3 is normal and beneficial....BUT NOT ALWAYS. Sometimes it is simply to hard on the mom either physically or emotionally. You have a choice in what to do. Noone can make you feel bad about it unless you let them. You need to let go of the guilt.

    Answer by SusieD250 at 11:51 PM on Apr. 2, 2009

  • Maybe over the next couple days, try putting her skin-to-skin on your chest, and let her nurse as often as she wants. Put her to the breast as often as you can. Fenugreek and Mother's Milk tea can both help increase milk supply, sometimes dramatically. You can see a Lactation Consultant (if you do, please see one who is IBCLC, they are well trained. Anyone who is just "LC" may be, or may not be - you never know.) An IBCLC will be able to help you know if you have a supply issue, if there is a more effective way for you to pump, etc. Pumping is a very poor indicator of your actual supply. A better measure is if your baby is peeing about 8 diapers a day, gaining weight, growing and thriving.
    It's also possible to do formula parttime, and breastfeed when you are with her. That's a scenario that works well for many families.
    Good luck, Mama!

    Answer by Collinsky at 12:06 AM on Apr. 3, 2009

  • Are you exclusively pumping? Or do you work outside the home? If so, it sounds like your DD is Reverse Cycling. Here is some info on it...check it out and see if that's what she's really doing:

    ETA:  Stupid me, I just read that you do yeah, that really sounds like your daughter is RCing.  If I were in that situation, i'd check into donor milk, but I know not every woman is comfortable with that, so if you HAVE to supplement a feeding or two during the day while you're at work, do it.  How old is your baby?  Have you introduced solids yet?  That would cut back on the amount of supplementation you need.  You don't have to stop BFing altogether.


    Answer by milfalicious08 at 12:34 AM on Apr. 3, 2009

  • How often are you pumping, and with what pump? It can make a HUGE difference.

    Drop me a private message, if you would. I'm one of the admins of the Breastfeeding Moms group and have helped plenty of moms like you through this sort of thing.

    No need for guilt uhless you've killed someone. And it takes MONTHS to dry up. So..let's try turning this around, shall we?

    Answer by gdiamante at 2:35 AM on Apr. 3, 2009

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