Discouraged with BF & Latching

Discussion in 'The First Year' started by juliannepercy, Jul 15, 2010.

  1. juliannepercy

    juliannepercy Well-Known Member

    My twins are 5 weeks old. We worked very hard at breastfeeding in the beginning and eventually had success... got rid of the supplements and gaining well. I've been tandem feeding (when I have help) the past 2 weeks but the past several days feel like we're going backwards. They aren't latching as well, one of my sons stops in the middle of his feed and is really hard to get going again. They open their mouths wide (eventually) but I can't seem to keep the bottom of their lips on the bottom of my areola...even if they seem to go on perfectly their lips move up. Any advice on that one?

    I feel like we're going backwards, and feedings are getting worse, not better. I'm considering going back to feeding them one at a time so I can really concentrate on each and have an extra hand to do breast compressions or whatever to keep them going. Would love to tandem eventually... when did most of you start? Are there others still doing one at a time??

    I thought things were supposed to get better, not worse with BF... is this normal???????
  2. juliannepercy

    juliannepercy Well-Known Member

    I forgot to mention too that they seem to be feeding for a lot longer lately... was about 20-25 min when I was doing them alone and now they can go for over 40 min so not really saving a ton of time with tandem feeding. Is it normal for them to feed longer? I thought they were supposed to get more efficient?!?!?
  3. MNTwinSquared

    MNTwinSquared Well-Known Member

    Generally around 6 weeks people turn a corner and breastfeeding gets a lot easier. For me it was 8 weeks. The longer feeding is more than likely a growth spurt. They are needing more milk and are telling your body that it needs to produce more. Try to nurse as much as you can during these and your milk supply will keep up. :hug: It's generally just a few days. If they aren't actively nursing then you can de-latch. Good luck!

    Great job getting to where you are right now! :clapping:
  4. fuchsiagroan

    fuchsiagroan Well-Known Member

    Ditto Jackie. Also, it's ok to feed them one at a time as needed. You'll still be able to get back to tandem, and the one-on-one attention might help get them back on track.
    1 person likes this.
  5. cheezewhiz24

    cheezewhiz24 Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I remember that 6 week growth spurt. :drown: It's hard and fine to do 1 at a time if it's easier for you. It won't take very long for them to request the extra milk and their efficiency will surprise you! I'm sorry you are feeling discouraged. Drink lots of water and feed those babies!
  6. miss_bossy18

    miss_bossy18 Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    when their lips move on your breast, does it hurt if you continue to let them nurse? if it doesn't hurt, and your nipples aren't being damaged, then i wouldn't worry about it - let them latch how they want. if, however, it does hurt or you're noticing nipple damage, then it will definitely be worthwhile to go back to nursing one on one for a little while. i went back & forth between tandem & one on one nursing for a good while before we settled on tandem feeding for almost all of their feeds.

    also, it's possible that along with a growth spurt they're also comfort nursing at the end of their feed, which could be why they're hanging out longer at the boob.

    hang in there! it does get better & better the more you do it & the more confidence you gain. for me, things really started to improve around the 10 week mark. :hug:
  7. slugrad1998

    slugrad1998 Well-Known Member

    I actually didn't start tandem nursing until about 3 months or so because it was just too difficult for me. My DS had a horrible time learning to latch and needed a nipple shield for the first month. He also had reflux and arched a lot, which made it hard to keep him on the pillow. Even once we got the hang of tandem, if I was not caring about how long it took I would choose to nurse them one at a time until they got much older. I think whatever feels most comfortable for you is what you should do.

    The one who is finishing early, is he pulling away and fussing or is he falling asleep?
  8. k2daho

    k2daho Well-Known Member

    My babes have had small changes in the way that they latch all of the way long our breast feeding journey, especially once they really started to get the hang of it themselves rather than me always directing. I always went by the advice of an LC who said that even if the latch isn't "perfect" or "textbook", that so long as the babies are getting lots of milk, and it doesn't cause you pain or nipple damage (as a pp said) then you might as well leave well enough alone. Basically, choose your BFing battles carefully lol.

    Also I only recently started doing occasional tandem feedings, and my twins are seven months old now. It just never worked well for us, and someone's latch or my comfort always suffered when we tandem fed so I let go of the idea for a long time. I think that most babies in the first few months really do benefit from the one on one especially when they are still getting their breast feeding techniques down to a science.
  9. slugrad1998

    slugrad1998 Well-Known Member

    I didn't tandem very much until mine were about 6 or 7 months either, and mostly for first thing in the AM and bedtime. Otherwise I enjoyed the one on one time with each of them. Now we only nurse twice a day, and breastfeeding toddlers has its own challenges! Keep up the good work :)
  10. juliannepercy

    juliannepercy Well-Known Member

    Thanks everyone for the encouragement. I've gone back to feeding them one at a time. Although it's taking way longer and I'm exhausted they are latching better and it's less stressful so I think it's the right decision for now. I also like the individual bonding. I'd like to try tandem again down for the road for sure.

    Question for those who did it individually... what did you do with the first while you were feeding the second? I'm trying a bouncy chair and he's happy for awhile but then fusses and there's not much I can do while feeding my other son. I guess I just have to accept that he'll cry?!?!?????
  11. k2daho

    k2daho Well-Known Member

    Sometimes yes there is just a bit of fussing. It's hard when they are very young as they can't really "play" on their own yet. It will get better! Once mine got actually interested in the playmat or bouncy chair it was easier. I also tried to make sure that I didn't wait until they were both melting down before I fed. Whichever one was the most fussy usually got fed first. Sometimes you just have to leave one in their crib with the mobile or whatever on and go in the next room so that you can relax and feed the other. The other baby sobbing isn't good for relaxing and having your milk let down if you're all tensed up listening to it! It's definitely one of the tough parts of being at home solo during the day with the babes, but as I said it will get better as they get more independent and also as they start to realize that they just have to wait sometimes.
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