Sunday, February 28, 2010

Breastfeeding Stories

My sister-in-law, May, recently had a baby. She was asking me about my breastfeeding experience, which I gladly recounted to her.

I was able to nurse my son for a year. However, starting nursing was trickier than I anticipated. I remember right after pushing Ari out, Dr. K. put him on my belly. My amazingly supportive doula, Cori, attempted to help me get Ari to latch on, but he was pretty out of it, and I couldn't get him to recognize my breast as a potential food source.

Eventually, with the help of a wacky Upper East Side lactation consultant, who wore scrubs and pearls, I was able to nurse my baby. For more on that story click here.

When May was asking me questions about nursing, I thought about how many mothers have nursing stories to share! I wanted to invite all you mamas out there to share your breastfeeding stories.

Post a comment below with your story about nursing. How did you start? Was it difficult to begin nursing? Did you have any help getting nursing going? Please share your experiences below!

post signature


  1. i just started reading your blog. I live in Ottawa (ON) and my second son's birth was a little different because i went with a midwife (i had a reg OB/GYN for my first son's birth), anyway, he starting nursing right away, he nursed for 40mins, we couldn't get him off of it to weigh him (midwives weigh and cut the cord after the baby has finished nursing, etc) and then he pooped all over me....and so it started

  2. HA HA HA HA! Sara, that's hilarious! I'm so glad you started reading my blog! Welcome! I am thinking about trying a midwife for my next birth, whenever that may be.

    So you had no trouble starting, ey? I believe that when he pooped on you, it was an act of love ;). Ah babies!

  3. Okay, great topic, Sarah! I was terrified! I even had dreams about breastfeeding long before L was born. Luckily I got a lot of support at the hospital, there was lactation specialists that came to my room, and they let me stay two days extra just to get the hang of it. But it took me a long time to multitask while nursing the baby, I was consentrating so hard that it felt as if I ran a marathon each time I nursed him (and he nursed like 20 times a day the first month *gasp*). Will definitively be more relaxed next time :)

    Also, I just want to say that I know quite a few wonderful moms who, due to various reasons, cannot breastfeed their babies, and it makes me really upset to hear strangers comment on it. As if they are bad mothers for not nursing their babies.

  4. Gry! Thank you for bringing that up! Some mothers, for whatever reason, are unable to nurse their babies, and that's okay. It's an individual decision.

    It sounds like you had a lot of support at the hospital! That's awesome that they let you stay two extra days!

    20 times a day wow! It just goes to show you, it take a while to get into the groove of things with nursing!

  5. It was so much better with a midwife. when we go for number 3, i will go with a midwife again. the appts were approx 40 mins long and they answered all my questions and they explain in detail the pros and cons of each test and you decide if you want to do the test. We left the hosp 3h after baby was born and then the midwife visited us at our house 3 times in the week following. If you are thinking about it, perhaps contact one now and interview her and then see if there is a waiting list. I am not sure about where you live, but in Ottawa midwife spots are few and far between.

  6. my short experience of 3 weeks summed up: GET AN EXPERIENCED LC!!!!!!! Mine was like well you are doing everything right and obviously I wasn't since I was in a hell of a lot of pain for the 3 weeks! She was not experienced and did not think to refer me to another LC who I found out about later on, apparently this LC in my area was a miracle worker but it was too late >:(

  7. Sara- Well, you've sold me on the midwife situation!

    Elisheva- Yes! It is so important to have a supportive and experienced Lactation Consultant. I remember being really tired and not wanting to go to the breastfeeding class. But Wil said to me "You should go." So I went and it was an invaluable experience. The Lactation Consultant taught me how to breastfeed!

  8. I saw many extremely experienced Lactation Consultants who even did house calls and still, I failed at nursing after nearly 3 months. I guess some is better than none. My LC's even said, "you know what, it just might not be working for you, no matter what you do....I suggest supplementing" and my midwives said "no, don't give up" so I listened to my midwives but when Tahira stopped gaining weight altogether, I started supplementing. I had mastitis 3 times, ductal yeast, and MRSA in my breast. I never really had cracked or bleeding nipples, all my problems were internal (plugged ducts, etc.) I spent some days in bed with 104 degree fever that just wouldn't go away and was almost forced to the ER a few times by my husband. My take on it all: nursing can't work if you're dead. I just pray for better luck next time!

    Oh and Sheva, all my LC's said that nipples can be very sore even if you're doing everything right for up to 3 weeks so perhaps you really were doing it all ok? My nipples hurt for a little over 2 weeks but one day they felt better, kind of out of nowhere, and I wasn't doing anything different. I called my aunt who nursed her kids until they were 1 and she said hers also hurt for 3 weeks.

  9. OH! Also I think having a good pump is SUPER essential!! After I started supplementing I finally got a good pump (medela electric double breast pump) and so I was able to pump more than 1/4 oz at a time...FINALLY! I gave bottled breast milk for a few weeks but then was put on meds that aren't so good for the leche. I hate making bottles in public though because I think people are thinking bad about me...especially since I just read that Oregon has the most breastfeeding moms than any other state. I always feel so guilty!!!


What do you think? Feel free to agree or disagree, but hateful comments will be deleted.