Monday, July 18, 2011

Inquisition Monday

Yesterday, Arual asked, "how did you handle nursing Margaret during early pregnancy? I'm four weeks along and my breasts are starting to get extremely tender. I don't want to wean just yet, but the pain may be too much if it gets any worse. Tips or advice? My son is 21 months right now."

And I didn't know where to start! I realized that it's almost been 2 years since I've been at that stage in pregnancy and I actually don't remember what I did, except I somehow pushed through it.

So I searched my archives and collected up the posts that mentioned breastfeeding while pregnant. There were more than I expected! I talk about breastfeeding a lot, don't I? And guess what: next month we have World Breastfeeding Week! I know you're all excited: I've got a fun thing planned for my blog for World Breastfeeding Week (and possibly the whole National Breastfeeding Month) this year!

Anyway, so in order of publish date, earliest to latest we have:
First Trimester Thoughts
Breastfeeding and Pregnancy
The Birthday
Inquisition Friday
In which I make life harder on myself and then give up
The Whole Nine Months

I think that's all of them. There are things you can do to limit the amount of nursing time: limit the nursing to a count of 5 or 10, or a short song like Itsy Bitsy Spider. Or you can use the nursing time to practice your labor relaxation techniques. I know moms who breastfeed through one pregnancy to see how they'll like it and then decide to never do it again. But then for others, it doesn't bother them at all once they get past a certain milestone (out of the first trimester, colostrum finally coming in, etc). And sometimes the child doesn't really give some moms a choice: they simply lose interest and wean over time.

Even though you might not have plans for tandem nursing in 8 months, I'd suggest reading Adventures in Tandem Nursing because there is a section on nursing while pregnant. Also talk to other moms who have been there, done that. Maybe some of my commenters will say something. How have you dealt with nursing with sensitive nipples- from pregnancy or other hormal shifts?


  1. I have been breastfeeding for more than 7.5 years, through 3 pregnancies and am currently nursing three kidlets. This post was excellent! I shared some of my tips here, but it really is an individual thing for each mother. Best wishes!

  2. Thanks, Dulce! I've been going through a small bout of nursing aversion myself the past couple of weeks and your post was very helpful!

  3. This is unrelated, but it's a question I have about cosleeping that you might be able to answer and I'm not sure where else on your site to ask it. I found your blog a few weeks ago, and it's been very interesting. I'm very interested in cosleeping if I am ever able to have children, but I'm wondering how you deal with family members going to bed at different times without being too disruptive to whoever is already asleep in the bed. I'm assuming you and your husband probably don't go to sleep as early as the kids do, and that Isaac maybe goes to bed earlier than Margaret does. If that's true, then how does your bedtime routine for various family members work so that you don't wake up someone who's already in the bed when it's time for someone else to go to bed? Has that been a problem at all? Thanks! :)

  4. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I found the first couple of posts you mentioned, but the others didn't stand out in my search so it was helpful to have them pointed out. :)

    I have considered tandem nursing, and I actually have a little bit of experience from nursing my older brother's son (15 months younger than my son) and my older sister's daughter (who is very close in age to my son) at various times. I just didn't realize how painful it would be to get through the pregnancy!

    My nipples were really tender with my first pregnancy, so I guess that's not really a surprise to me but it helps to hear that there may an end to the nursing pain. First trimester is over in September!

    I'll try to get my hands on that book recommendation. Thank you again. :)

  5. I wasn't too sore in the beginning but I felt the same way the last month of pregnancy. It just hurt so bad sometimes. The easiest thing I found was to distract myself. Like finding something to read on my smart phone, but a book would work as well. Or sometimes if it took him too long to fall asleep, like he wasn't tired enough to sleep fast, I would have my husband do something with him like read or watch a short video until he was tired enough that nursin didn't take too long.
    Good luck. It was worth it, for us at least, to stick it out. My son and new daughter are going to be so close. My son absolutely loves his new sister.

  6. I have nursed through two pregnancies and that was when I started having to set nursing boundaries. I only let them nurse for nap time and bed time and only for a short amount of time and then we would snuggle. They didn't like it, but it saved my sanity and kept the nursing relationship going for 4.5 years with my oldest and my middle child is 3 and still tandem nursing with my 6 month old. I am actually able to nurse my 3 year old more now than I was able to when I was pregnant.

  7. Lisa, mind if I use your question for next Monday?

  8. An update:

    I'm really pushing boundaries at this point because if I don't, my son will switch from one side to the other non-stop. Before pregnancy, that was fine, albeit a little annoying. Now it's out-and-out torture.

    Getting him to unlatch at night when nursing becomes too painful apparently leads him to clamp his teeth down while pulling his mouth away--BIG OUCH. I'm thinking I may night-wean and just give him water, but he hates it so far and I feel bad changing it up on him so suddenly.

    Thank you for all the advice, and I hope I can keep nursing up, even if it's not as often.

  9. Sure, I would love for you to use my question for next Monday!

  10. Mike H.10:06 PM

    Along the lines of breastfeeding, there's a post April did recently about the uproar over a "breastfed" toy doll:

    With some sarcastic humor.

    As long as a girl doesn't actually remove her top to pretend to breastfeed a doll, I don't have a problem with that. I know MANY girls have pretended to breatfeed their dolls.


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