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Old 05-09-2008, 11:51 AM   #1
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Unhappy weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.

I'm weaning my 5 month old mainly b/c I need more freedom. I'm sleep deprived from geting up every 2-3 hours at night to nurse and when I give her a bottle she'll usually sleep through the night. My plan was to wait until 6 months but I wanted to do it gradually. I figured it would take a while. Well it's not. My milk supply has droped way more than I thought. I know if I wanted I could pump but I like being able to give her a bottle when I want her to eat. For example I pick DD #1 up from daycare at 5:00. It never fails that at 5:30 DD `#2 wants to nurse and at that time things are really hectic. W/a bottle I can top off her stomach before I leave to pick DD up. I tried nursing but I never have enough to satisfy her if it's before 3 hours from the last time I nursed. Does that make since? Anyways I feel this is what's best for me but emotionally it HURTS. I'm really sad. As stupid as it sounds I'm afraid she won't love me as much. DD #1 was only on breast milk for 7 weeks before switching her to formula b/c of severe acid reflux. With her it wasn't as hard but it was still sad. I'm going to miss her sweet little smile after she's done. She smiles w/a bottle but it's not the same. I kind of feel like this is the last link to her birth, if that makes since? I guess I'm just needing support to get through this. I know this is what I want in the long run but it's still hard.

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Old 05-09-2008, 12:15 PM   #2
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Re: weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.

Hi there, I can't really offer you support and I know that's what you're looking for, but I do want to encourage you to REALLY think about this before you do it. This is a big decision and once you stop you can't go back. I have a friend who weaned her child at 6 mos and regrets it to this day.
The AAP recommends breastfeeding for at least one year (and the World Health Organization recommends at least TWO) and formula doesn't even come close to what breastmilk can do. I know that at times it is a sacrifice but your baby will reap the benefits for a lifetime.
With each passing month (especially after the sixth month when you start solids) your baby will be able to go longer without nursing and won't be as dependent on you. I would try a wrap or sling, too. It's great for nursing hands-free during the busy times of day when you can't sit down to nurse.
I think that breastfeeding is the single most important thing I have done for my son's health and emotional well-being (as well as my own). He is 18 mos and still nursing and I wouldn't give it up for anything. It's the first thing he wants when he gets hurt or isn't feeling well, it puts him to sleep so easily, and it's a nice quiet time for us to reconnect in a busy day.
I think if you can get past this rough point you'll find that nursing actually makes things EASIER, not harder. If you switch to formula, you'll still be getting up at night (it's a myth that they sleep through the night with formula), but now you'll have to make a bottle instead of snuggling up in a rocking chair and drifting off to sleep. Your baby will probably be sick more often, too, and for longer periods, which will tie you down and be more inconvenient than having to pump a bottle to go out. And when your baby is hungry you have to prepare a bottle, not to mention washing them, going out to buy formula, the costs, etc.
Anyway, I hope I'm not offending you but I am really passionate about this. I think you'll find that if you really search out why you want to stop and what the repercussions will be for you and your baby, you might find another solution and change your mind.
Anyway, best of luck to you and I hope you figure out something that will work for you and your family. Take care, mama.
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:16 PM   #3
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Re: weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.



I nurse my 9 month old every 3 hours or so. Even at 6 months she was nursing every 2 hours.

You might want to check out the formula/introducing solids forum if you still want to wean.
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:23 PM   #4
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Re: weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.

Breastmilk is rapidly digested, so it is normal that she is eating before the 3 hour mark. You could always breastfeed part time... first thing in the morning and once in the evening or something like that. Are you working full time? Some breastfeeding would allow her to continue to get some benefits and let you keep the bonding time.

it doesn't have to be all or nothing unless that's how you want it. if you do decide to keep breastfeeding full time, as she starts to eat solids that will give you a break too.
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:26 PM   #5
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:31 PM   #6
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Re: weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.

I'm gonna go against the crowd and actually support you...

My DS weaned at about 4 months-- mostly because I was working full time so he obviously had to have bottles. I was pumping to try to keep up and he was getting b/m at daycare, but soon he decided that it was EASIER to eat from a bottle, he didn't have to work as hard. Plus I'd nurse him after working out (and before, actually) and he hated it-- the lactic acid buildup in my body made my milk sour or something. He eventually started refusing the breast and reaching for the bottle, and didn't seem to care if it was formula or breast milk. During that time I'd frozen some as well, so about once every couple days he'd get the breast milk. He clearly preferred that, but since he'd refused the breast my supply dwindled to nothing within a week or two.

I don't regret it at all. It worked out for both of us, as pumping at work was becoming nearly impossible. He's fine and healthy now, and we had the freedom we both wanted. I wish you the best of luck, try not to feel guilty.
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:41 PM   #7
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Re: weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riverdavidsmama View Post
Hi there, I can't really offer you support and I know that's what you're looking for, but I do want to encourage you to REALLY think about this before you do it. This is a big decision and once you stop you can't go back. I have a friend who weaned her child at 6 mos and regrets it to this day.
The AAP recommends breastfeeding for at least one year (and the World Health Organization recommends at least TWO) and formula doesn't even come close to what breastmilk can do. I know that at times it is a sacrifice but your baby will reap the benefits for a lifetime.
With each passing month (especially after the sixth month when you start solids) your baby will be able to go longer without nursing and won't be as dependent on you. I would try a wrap or sling, too. It's great for nursing hands-free during the busy times of day when you can't sit down to nurse.
I think that breastfeeding is the single most important thing I have done for my son's health and emotional well-being (as well as my own). He is 18 mos and still nursing and I wouldn't give it up for anything. It's the first thing he wants when he gets hurt or isn't feeling well, it puts him to sleep so easily, and it's a nice quiet time for us to reconnect in a busy day.
I think if you can get past this rough point you'll find that nursing actually makes things EASIER, not harder. If you switch to formula, you'll still be getting up at night (it's a myth that they sleep through the night with formula), but now you'll have to make a bottle instead of snuggling up in a rocking chair and drifting off to sleep. Your baby will probably be sick more often, too, and for longer periods, which will tie you down and be more inconvenient than having to pump a bottle to go out. And when your baby is hungry you have to prepare a bottle, not to mention washing them, going out to buy formula, the costs, etc.
Anyway, I hope I'm not offending you but I am really passionate about this. I think you'll find that if you really search out why you want to stop and what the repercussions will be for you and your baby, you might find another solution and change your mind.
Anyway, best of luck to you and I hope you figure out something that will work for you and your family. Take care, mama.

very well said! i am still nursing my 20 month but it is tiring at times but i also have a 12 yr old and i relize how fast time goes by. it seems like at 6 months i was ready to hang up my nursing bras! lol but i'm glad i hung in there.
but that said-you need to do what makes you feel like you can be the best mommy for your kiddos.
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:45 PM   #8
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Re: weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riverdavidsmama View Post
Hi there, I can't really offer you support and I know that's what you're looking for, but I do want to encourage you to REALLY think about this before you do it. This is a big decision and once you stop you can't go back. I have a friend who weaned her child at 6 mos and regrets it to this day.
The AAP recommends breastfeeding for at least one year (and the World Health Organization recommends at least TWO) and formula doesn't even come close to what breastmilk can do. I know that at times it is a sacrifice but your baby will reap the benefits for a lifetime.
With each passing month (especially after the sixth month when you start solids) your baby will be able to go longer without nursing and won't be as dependent on you. I would try a wrap or sling, too. It's great for nursing hands-free during the busy times of day when you can't sit down to nurse.
I think that breastfeeding is the single most important thing I have done for my son's health and emotional well-being (as well as my own). He is 18 mos and still nursing and I wouldn't give it up for anything. It's the first thing he wants when he gets hurt or isn't feeling well, it puts him to sleep so easily, and it's a nice quiet time for us to reconnect in a busy day.
I think if you can get past this rough point you'll find that nursing actually makes things EASIER, not harder. If you switch to formula, you'll still be getting up at night (it's a myth that they sleep through the night with formula), but now you'll have to make a bottle instead of snuggling up in a rocking chair and drifting off to sleep. Your baby will probably be sick more often, too, and for longer periods, which will tie you down and be more inconvenient than having to pump a bottle to go out. And when your baby is hungry you have to prepare a bottle, not to mention washing them, going out to buy formula, the costs, etc.
Anyway, I hope I'm not offending you but I am really passionate about this. I think you'll find that if you really search out why you want to stop and what the repercussions will be for you and your baby, you might find another solution and change your mind.
Anyway, best of luck to you and I hope you figure out something that will work for you and your family. Take care, mama.
very well put
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:45 PM   #9
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Re: weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.

Not trying to be mean here. I know how hard this is, I have a 5 mo old too.

Hate to tell you but a baby that small needs to nurse that often. My advice is to hang on and try to do what is best for her. Very soon she will be eating solids and not nursing as much.
Have you tried rice cereal yet? Mix it with a little breast milk and see if she will take it with a spoon. This could help out a bunch. My LO isn't quite ready but I am trying every week.
You don't have very much longer with the constant nursing and you can do it if you have made it this far. You are SO CLOSE to the stage where it gets easier.
I'm not trying to come down on you, I know it is very hard. You sound like you will have regrets if you quit IOP or I wouldn't have said anything.
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:50 PM   #10
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Re: weaning my 5 month old and it's really hard.

If it makes you sad, don't do it. It's the healthiest choice for your bub. I want freedom too, but I signed on for parenting so I don't think I'll get that for another, oh 18 years or so

It's hard work, and it's easy to get frustrated, but it's so worth it if you push yourself past what you thought you could do for the sake of your child's health. And it does get easier, you have a month until you start solids, I'm sure that'll help. I get really frustrated with it sometimes, I nurse when I'm at home and pump twice a day at work, and really sometimes I just want to throw in the towel because I haven't had a lunch break at work in nearly 4 months because every spare minute I get is spent running up 8 floors to the room I pump in. It's freaking annoying. Then when I get home, the second I get in the door, he wants to nurse, so instead of eating to make up for hte fact that I didn't get a lunch break, I'm the milk supplier again.

And yeah, it's frustrating, it's hard, it takes up so much of my time, but my babe will be healthier for it, smarter for it, instead of dead nutrients he's getting a plethora of live and active benefits. I'm setting him for life - so it's worth it.
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