View Poll Results: Were you adequately prepared for breastfeeding with your FIRST baby?

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  • No, I was not prepared at all.

    21 19.27%
  • I wasn't as prepared as I should have been.

    38 34.86%
  • I was somewhat prepared, I felt I had enough at the time.

    32 29.36%
  • I was very well prepared.

    18 16.51%
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Thread: Do you think that you were adequately prepared?

  1. #19

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    I wasn't as prepared as I should have been.

    At the time I thought I was sort of prepared... but I really honestly had no idea, or concept... due to not knowing anyone personally that had a breastfeeding relationship with their child.

    There were many mistakes that were made at the hospital in Aidyns first few days of life, including FF him with a bottle, and not encouraging me to keep him attached as much as I possibly could. (I was under the impression that 10 minutes every 4 hours was enough? And no one told me otherwise!)

    I think the resources were always there, but I did not know of them, or how to access them. Such as hiring an electric pump from a chemist, or contacting the ABA...


  2. #20

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    I voted that I wasn't prepared. However I felt I was just lucky it worked very well for me.
    If it didn't I'm not sure what I would have done.

  3. #21

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    I answered I was somewhat prepared, I felt I had enough at the time.

    DH and I went to antenatal classes and I read books and internet sites. DS was undiagnosed breech and arrived by emergency C/S. The next day he was in NICU being FF by tube due to low blood sugar. The Hospital is pro BF so all the M/Ws were really encouraging, but I got confused between the birth centre M/Ws, the ward M/Ws and the NICU nurses and all the advice was different. DH was great and actually remembered more useful info from the antenatal class on BF than I did. We ended up being discharged with a nipple shield and only 24 hours of exclusive BF. Once we got home DS failed to put on weight until we ditched the nipple shield.

    The things that finally helped were:
    - Listening to the advice of only one M/W who I trusted and was determined to help me BF;
    - Watching an ABA DVD showing attachment;
    - Weekly weigh ins to help build my confidence by seeing DS gaining weight;
    - Practice and perserverance (even with a cracked nipple).

    I thought wrongly that bubs naturally know how to BF, but I didn't realise they need to learn too.

  4. #22

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    I answered I was somewhat prepared, I felt I had enough at the time.

    I went to the classes at the hospital, read on bf via ABA and BellyBelly websites and had friends who had or were having successful bf relationships with their bubs, so I was sure that I would be breastfeeding my DD for about 12 mths. I also watched Sue can't think of her surnames video about bf once I had DD.

    When DD was born, I was in recovery and had asked to feed her there but the paed. was doing her apgar scores etc.... so I didn't get to feed her until I was t'fered to my room. MW atached DD but then all my family come in to see her and I took her off for them to cuddle her - I thought I'd be able to latch her back on no probs, little did I know that I would need help. Also DD had low blood sugar, so ff top-ups were recommended, which I agreed to b/c she was only just born and thought it would be just through the night. MW's bought DD into me throughout the night - 4 hourly as I had a c-section and was bed ridden for the night. After that I should have buzzed the midwives every feed but I didn't cos they would take too long to get to me and I thought, well the MW's aren't coming home with me so I better learn to do this myself and in the end I would just try to latch on DD myself, which was probably the cause of my cracked and blistered nipples.
    My milk was taking quite sometime to come in and DD started to get unsettled and want more, which I didn't seem to be satisfing her, so the top-ups began. I started expressing and was still producing colostrum and I think the most I ever expressed was 20mls. I ended up going home on day 8, with my milk still not in and me becoming anxious everytime I had to feed DD plus my nipples flatening out, getting blocked ducts and then mastitis. MW suggested staying for another night, but I declined b/c I wanted to go home and start our life together as a family. After much angst and chats with DH and MW I decided to ff DD, as I thought it would be best - mentally for me. In hindsight I should have persevered, contacted the ABA, went back to the hospital and used their lactation classes (something I didn't know about until DD was 8 weeks old).... I probably could have bf and ff until my milk come in, then exclusively bf.

  5. #23

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    I thought I was prepared (only 8 days into it now so who knows what is to come), but wasn't mentally prepared for a surgical delivery or the after affects. Bubs was in special care for the first 3 days so we really struggled - no attachment issues, but my milk came in late and I physically found it exhausting having to go to special care for every feed, we also had to express for the first couple of days then comp feed because he was a big baby and was getting so hungry. Once my milk came in it became much better. He was up to 5 hourly feeds yesterday (I had to wake him for feeds) but today has been grizzly 1/2 hour feeding. The mws at the hospital were fantastic and incredibly supportive but I did get a little bit of conflicting info, mostly to do with changing over to the other breast on each feed. Some say do 20 minutes or thereabouts on each side, others say put them back on the first side after a burp so they can really drain the hindmilk and then offer them the second side.

  6. #24

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    I attended a class a couple of weeks before I was due, and at the time thought it was good. However, they didn't say it could be hard, or that it's normal to have trouble/problems. So when my milk didn't come in for 6 days I thought I was "broken" and nobody told me otherwise... This of course led to me being fearful of the whole experience and I only lasted 8 weeks.

    This time I'm going to find a really good lactation expert and get it right from the start!

  7. #25

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    I felt pretty prepared...

    I knew I wanted to breastfeed so I tried to gain some info but not too much as I didnt want to overload myself with info and freak out. I had booked into a breastfeeding class at the hospital (to go to before your baby is born) but I left it a bit late and Claire decided to be born a couple of days before the class so I never went.. but, I was given a little bit of help while in hospital ( only when I asked though and I didnt feel I needed help much at all so I only asked a couple of times). I also did sit in the classroom at the hospital while the LC talked about BF, attachment, how often and overcoming some BF issues.. I dont remember much of it though becuase I was falling asleep!
    I was lucky that Claire and I didnt really have any problems with breastfeeding. I supppose the only thing that threw me off in the very early days was that my milk was not in till day 6-7, and I left hospital on day 3 with all the midwives and nurses saying "your milk will probably be in tonight or tomorrow."

    DH's mum is a midwife, so I ws able to ask her questions as she came over every day to help me out once DH had gone back to work. And my sister is a Child & Family health nurse and a big part of her course was all about breast feeding so I could also pick her brains. And the MCHN is just around the corner and she is a midwife and lactation consultant. I didnt really ask any of those three for any help, but it was good to know they were there and could help, iykwim?

    I also joined ABA, and although I have not called and spoken with the counsellors there, I did get some useful info from the "Breastfeeding... Naturally" book they sent me, as well as some of the info on their website. I wouldnt have know about ABA had I not been on BB though! (unless they haad told me about ABA in hospital.. I cant remember whether or not they did)
    AND of course, Bellybelly is a great source of information and advice from lovely ladies who have done it all before.

    SO I do think I did have access to enough resources to help me out.

  8. #26

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    I knew I really wanted to breast feed, so I read heaps and heaps of information.
    In Earlyparenting classes (ante-natal classes), we covered it a bit- the thing that stuck in my mind from the class was- its like eating a hamburger- their mouth needs to be as wide as possible to fit a whole mouth ful in. It worked remembering that in the early days.\I also had DD in a private hospital, and whilst in Labour, i explained to the midwife my desire to make bf successful. When on the ward, nurses would pop their head in every few hours to see how I was going- and if I buzzed for help, no matter what time of the day or night, there was always a midwife to help straight away.
    As one ferson has said, no one tells you how much it will hurt in the first few days, but once you are over the pain it is much easier.
    Also, it looked easy- until you are actually doing it for yourself, and realise just how hard it is.

  9. #27

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    I answered I was somewhat prepared, I felt I had enough at the time.

    In all honesty I'm not sure how perpared you can be for breastfeeding before you actually have a go at it. I tried to read as much as I could while I was pg, becuase my mum hadn't "been able" to breastfeed us kids, and she was convinced that I wouldn't be able to either. I was also worried about my (then) flat nipples. I think that wil be less of a problem next time around!

    I certainly wasn't prepared for an uncooperative baby with a short tongue, and a tongue tie so small it took 7 weeks to be picked up, even though I repeatedly asked for it to be checked.

    I did have a lot of post-natal BF support though, which was excellent.

  10. #28

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    When I last posted here I had only been feeding for 8 days, now 8 and a half months in I feel like I can answer the question better.

    One thing that would have been helpful is a chart or table of what can be expected in the first six - twelve months of breastfeeding. For example, when to expect growth spurts and certain behaviours (like the typical four to five month behaviour of latching on and off, temporary breast rejection, cluster feeding, resumption of night feeds, etc). So much is spent preparing one for establishing feeding; there is very little support in the community for coping with the changes in bf-ing patterns that happen over time.

  11. #29

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    Ooooh, this is a tough one. I knew what I was in for and that there was no way I was doing formula. TBH, the determination was the biggest thing in DS being BFed.

    But no, I wasn't adequately prepared really. I knew about the sore nipples and engorgement (which I didn't have) and the growth spurts, but I didn't know about tongue tie or evil midwives.

    All the conflicting advice and different positions... I should have just had the courage to say "I know you don't like the look of DS BFing in this position but it works for us." Also, all the advice I had was on latching on (no problems really, though many were foreseen) and the first wonderful natural feed (big problems with no help) - but I had read a LOT about BFing and as I said the determination was the main factor in us doing this, not facts or figures.

    So I don't know how to vote, I wasn't aware of how important this would be to me and I wasn't prepared for DS not having his first feed until he was a day old.

  12. #30
    kirsty_lee Guest

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    Good Question. If I hadn't of taken the steps to learn more about bf I would have known nothing. Midwifes/doctors never discussed this with me, if they did it was merely a question of "Are you planning to breastfeed" kwim. Even once dd was born there wasn't any real help. Once I was in recovery they pretty much just opened my shirt put dd on my breast and went on with their way. Then after getting out of recovery it was pretty much everyone giving different advice. "don't hold her this way, don't hold her that way, feed for this amount of time etc... Would of been nice to be better prepared for the world of breast feeding. Maybe I could of gone a little bit longer. Who knows

  13. #31

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    I was completely clueless as it never occurred to me that I might actually need information and help. I was under the false impression that a) I wanted to breastfeed and b) it was going to be a piece of cake cause it was all supposed to come naturally wasn't it?? I went to one info session with a midwife and felt embarrassed when I did ask questions as I was made to feel that I really should've known that anyways....... so hence, didn't ask too many more questions for fear of being made to feel like a silly, young new mum - I was already in my twenties when I had my first.
    Last edited by Charlyfrog; August 16th, 2008 at 05:23 PM.

  14. #32

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    Hmmm ... this is a tricky one. I certainly didn't read as much about BF as I did about labour. BUT, it wasn't like I was clueless. I expected it to be tricky, perhaps painful and very time-consuming.

    What I didn't expect was having 20 different opinions on why it wasn't working from midwives and the hospital's lactation consultant. Nothing could have prepared me for how soul-destroying and completely frustrating those differing opinions were.

    So if I wasn't adequately prepared then neither were any of those midwives/LC because they couldn't tell me what the problem was and their only solution was keep trying but comp feed with formula and express.

  15. #33

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    Default Breastfeeding Preparedness

    I was as prepared as I think I needed to be. I had signed up for a breastfeeding class 2 weeks before my due date but bubs came early so I missed out on that.
    In truth, when I was pregnant I used to think it was a bit ridiculous- all the information and fuss over breastfeeding; classes, books, 'lactation consultants' etc etc... In my mind breastfeeding was the only option for me, and I never imagined doing anything else. I figured, 'hey- its natural- how hard can it be? Baby is hungry, put baby to the boob, and voila!' I just assumed that nature would take its course....And luckily for me it did. Bubs latched on beautifully a couple of hours after the birth, and has been happily sucking away ever since. I never even encountered the sore, cracked nipples everyone warned me about!!
    However, I was in NO WAY prepared for the colic (indigestion, wind, or whatever you want to call it) that bubs got in the first 3 months after feeding. It was a nightmare. The only thing that would console my bub was offering him the breast, which only fed the problem even more as his poor little tummy was struggling to deal with the first load of milk. I just had to accept that he would cry unconsolably, lift up his knees and arch his back in pain after every feed, until he reached about 8 weeks and things started to turn a corner. Thankfully by 12 weeks his colic vanished completely, just as it says in all the books I'd read, and then feeding became an absolute pleasure. I will be more prepared for colic with the next bub however, ready to cut out the foods that upset bub no.1, and establish a feasible feeding routine early on.

  16. #34

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    Before the birth, I felt I was prepared and understood that breastfeeding might actually be difficult as it's something both mum and bub have to learn.

    However, in hindsight, I think I could have done a bit more only because we've had issues with DS's weight gains. I think the antenatal classes at the hospital didn't cover enough on BF'ing. Next time, I am going to an ABA class. After the birth, I had a crappy midwife who wanted to take DS into the nursery because we were taking longer than 5 minutes to get him attached!! I'm glad I flatly refused and told her to bugger off. She was so rough as well, grabbing my boob and trying to put Josh on, she wouldn't give me a chance. But we got it.

    Then all I ever heard from the midwives and hospital LC was that he had fantastic attachment and was going to be a great feeder. What rubbish, if someone had recognised he had a week suck in the first couple of weeks, I don't think I would have had all this stress and angst about him not gaining. Next time, I am going to hound them with questions and seek my own independant help early.

    The midwives in hospital were all different in their advice about when to feed, how long, one side or both, etc.

    Next time if a midwife tells me my baby has to have formula I am going to say to her "well, if he needs fluids that badly you can put him on a drip!"

    So, yes in hindsight I was prepared for the easy stuff but not for when things weren't working.

  17. #35

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    I was not prepared at all the first 2 times.
    My mum had trouble BFing, so had only attempted it with her first 2, so she couldn't really help & I didn't have ANY support at all.
    I stopped at 6 weeks with DD1 as I have sensitive nipples & the pain was getting worse. I asked my MCHN about it, but all she said was that she was attached well & couldn't understand how it could hurt. She didn't tell me I could toughen my nipples up.

    When pg with DD2 I knew a bit more & spent time toughening them up & there was not a second of pain! It was such a relief. But then at 4 weeks she got thrush. Noone told me that it could cause me pain, so when I felt it again, I gave up thinking I couldn't go through that again.

    I had probs at 6 weeks this time, but I refused to give up. I've had a bit of sensitivity this time around, but I can deal with that. I could feel my PND finally coming on, but I wasn't gonna quit so easily this time. I called my MCHN & she got onto an LC & at just over 5 months I'm still going!

  18. #36

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    I was somewhat prepared. I was fortunate I didn't any real problems, I don't know how I would have coped if I did have problems. In hospital I had trouble with attachment, but it was fine at home, I think it was cause I relaxed once I got home.

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