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Old 01-18-2011, 11:36 PM   #1
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On the verge of a nervous breakdown

HELP. I am the mama of 3 kids under 4, and nursing YDD, who is 4 months. Lately I've been trying to get her down before well..midnight and its not going well at all. Lately I've been starting the bedtime routine about 7:30..bath, massage, jammies, etc. Lights dim.. All she wants to do before then is nurse and smile and play. How do I get her to realize that it is not playtime? I seriously have to turn my head away from her when I feed her. I will stay up there and nurse her for a good 2 hours, but then I feel so suffocated and trapped and I dread nursing her at that time. I love breastfeeding and love feeding her, but I cant freaking take this anymore. Its been going on for months. I have other children/school/deployed husband to deal with as well. My other two weren't like this. Oh, and FWIW, she does not nap during the day, maybe 2.5 hours. I was thinking she was loading up on calories for a long stretch but I have yet to find the long stretch, she is up usually twice during the night(so 12AM-7AM). Is she maybe not getting enough during the day? She eats about every 2 hours or less. I'm so lost!

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Old 01-18-2011, 11:52 PM   #2
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Re: On the verge of a nervous breakdown

Oh HUGS!!!

I went through something similar with DS, though he didn't sleep more than 10 minutes at a time during the day (maybe 2-3 times for 10 minutes each time). Not going to lie. It was horrible, horrible. Even at 13m now, he's still up twice between 12-7am...

Some suggestions, I will cautiously offer:

- Baby carrier during the day, so she has lots of you for contact during the day.
- At night (maybe after 8pm) nurse her as she is asking, but no playing or fun times. Holding, snuggling, nursing, but in a dim room without play time. Keep that for during the day.

Does she take a paci?

I say this cautiously because I remember being where you are and thinking 'don't you think I've TRIED that?!!' . If you're doing all you can, you're doing all you can. Take some comfort in knowing that it won't last forever and it will get better... and you're doing such good things for her!!!

And whenever you can, take time for yourself... I know it's crazy hard, especially with older ones, but you do need it for your sanity. You need to keep yourself mentally healthy to keep your kids healthy.

Hugs again...
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:55 PM   #3
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Re: On the verge of a nervous breakdown

thanks. my supply is good(she just got 3+ let downs off of one breast), and will not take a paci or formula(supply tanked last month when i got sick). this kid is hardcore!i do wear her when we are out and about..i'm open to other suggestions!
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:57 PM   #4
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Re: On the verge of a nervous breakdown

I'm not sure I'll be much help to you, but I was in the same boat not too long ago, and we seem to be in a better place now. My DD is 5.5 months now, I also have a 4 yr old, an 11 yr old and a 17 yr old, and was taking care of my elderly (not so pleasantly) confused grandpa at the same time, and it was so incredibly exhausting. So here is what I did. I started wearing her. When she showed any sign of getting tired, she was changed, fed and then worn until she was asleep (which was quick generally). And then we transitioned wearing to being in bed. I also really hunkered down and stayed home ALL THE TIME, until we were on a good schedule. Now we go out only in the am, and only between naps for her. It makes life a little hard, but it is worth it to get her on a decent schedule....she will not sleep if we are out. Next I have either a sound machine or the same music (depending on if she is in my room, or her room) playing each time she goes to bed...this has helped a ton. The music plays over and over, and now when I turn it on, she lays her head on my shoulder and rubs her eyes. Next I swaddle her each time I feed her when I expect she should go to sleep (arms out....she won't do arms in swaddle). And last, lights go off, and kids must be quiet for her to sleep. This was hard for both my 4 and 11 yr olds (both are talkers), but after having to head to their rooms to play while I got sister to sleep a number of times, they both get it.

Good luck! It wasn't a good place to be, and it'll get better!
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Old 01-19-2011, 06:38 AM   #5
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Re: On the verge of a nervous breakdown

No advice mama because I am in the exact same spot (except my hubby isn't deployed, just stuck here with a broken foot, lol). DS is also 4 mos and the bedtime routine is killer. Basically now I nurse him to absolute fullness, at which point he's usually freaking by 8pm- then if I have to I throw him in the baby carrier and he eventually conks right out. So far it's the only thing that's working, but it's not ideal.
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Old 01-19-2011, 09:15 AM   #6
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Re: On the verge of a nervous breakdown

thanks guys i will start wearing her..im also going to try to offer both at each feed. we do swaddle, and she gets all excited bc she knows she is about to eat lol.
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Old 01-20-2011, 10:41 AM   #7
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Re: On the verge of a nervous breakdown

Can dad wear her at the end of the night? Maybe she won't want to nurse constantly and it will help her wind down.
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Old 01-20-2011, 12:29 PM   #8
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Re: On the verge of a nervous breakdown

For my son I had this issue to. This is what helped me. In the morning I wake up and nurse him, from both sides. We play together, talk, and have loads of fun. Then we I see the hunger approaching, recognizing his nursing signs, I co bathe! I bathe with him, and then immediately after I dress him warmly and nurse. He lulls into a sleep for about 3 hours in the morning. Then he wakes and nurses, and plays again. Around four he cat naps for up to an hour and around 8:30 we start getting ready for bed. I boil a pot of warm chamomile sleepy time tea and let the aroma fill the room. Aromatherapy while nursing relaxes the both of us so that he gets multiple letdowns in a short amount of time, Once he stops nursing I hold him close to me and he falls asleep for the night. My son is nine months old and still wakes up once a night to nurse.
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Old 01-20-2011, 03:09 PM   #9
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Re: On the verge of a nervous breakdown

I wouldn't start giving each breast at each feed unless she drains the first breast completely. Otherwise she will be getting more foremilk and less hindmilk which will make your problem worse.

Wear your baby It saved my life!
Good luck,
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