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Oh, What A Night

Written on October 25, 2005 by Kevin.

The title says it all. My wife and I had a hell of a time last night trying to get some sleep. We went out to dinner for the first time with Rylan last night and he slept through the entire dinner. I figured we would have some problems with him sleeping during the night but nothing could have prepared us for what we went through. I sit at work now with a terribly painful back from bouncing Rylan for extended periods of time last night.

The ultimate issue that seemed to cause this night of zombie'ism was the fact that Rylan is not feeding from my wife very well. The neighbors most likely know when Rylan is being fed because they can hear the screams from my wife. Feeding is supposed to be a slightly discomforting act but when my Rylan chomps down and causes blisters and bleeding, something isn't right. Its been a week now and the problems remain. We wonder if he is getting enough food but luckily his diaper count seems to confirm that he is. Books on breastfeeding have been purchased and referenced with no luck at all. My wife has pumped and given that to Rylan but when even that doesn't work, you know you are having a bad night. As much as we haven't wanted to use a bottle, we have been forced to lately. On top of that, we are even more against using formula but last night we were at a point where we fed him formula or he simply would not get fed. A point in time where my wife likely seems terrible and possible an inadequate mother. I hope that me reassuring her that she isn't worthless means something.

My wife continues to want to feed him naturally but things don't look good. We have run out of ideas on how to correct Rylan's latching problem. My wife had talked with a lactation consultant prior to being discharged from the hospital and her advice was only a start. Unfortunately paying $70 for additional advice from another consultant is not possible. I can only hope that Rylan begins to feed correctly or mom suddenly has her pain threshold increased.


I would suggest going to your local La Leche League (LLL) meetings. They should meet once a month. Or you guys could ask your doctor/peditrian or call back the lactation consultant and ask her more questions. Tell her not to give up!!

Written by Julie on Oct 25, 2005

We went through the exact same thing. We bought the books, had the consultants come in... You name it, we did it. I threw money at anyone who even thought they might be able to help.

Wy wife, of course, was completely hysterical. She blamed herself absolutely -- when she wasn't blaming me.

In the end, there was absolutely nothing we could do but pump & bottle feed. We kept that up for about four months before we finally switched Sullivan over to formula.

Reach out to the LLL types. They can be very supportive during a TERRIBLY difficult time. But in the end, remember -- formula is not the end of the world.

And congratulations.

Written by Rob on Oct 25, 2005

congrats on the arrival of baby rylan! i have been reading your blog since my hubby showed me the post where you tried the different jars of baby about dedication! :)

just want to say to your wife about the breastfeeding difficulty she's going thru: be encouraged that you are not the 1st mom to go thru this. it's week one; with help (from lll or the lactation consultant) & persistence, week 2 to week nth can only bring improvement as mom & baby get into the breastfeeding thing. in the mean time, use the bottle & let the blisters heal.

take care!

Written by rachel on Oct 25, 2005

Definitely call La Leche League as Julie suggested and convey the urgency. Also try calling your local WIC (Women Infants & Children) program (it's a federal program that is state and county run). Or call call your county's maternal/child health branch of your public health department and ask for a public health nurse visit (it's free in our area and very under-utilized).

Try Lanolin for the blistering or soreness (commercial name, Lansinoh, found at K-Mart in the baby isle). Rubbing in breast milk may also help. Leaving the breasts to open air will help them heal, so, uh, close your curtains! Warm moist compresses may also feel good.

At some point, the baby's sucking will burst the blister and then let it heal. If the pain is too great, nurse one side, pump the other. If she gets a perfect latch now, it's still going to hurt (less) until the blisters heal.

Or so says my wife... If there is a latching problem, it won't magically get better; you'll need to get advice from someone.

Bottle feeding pumped breast milk is fine, but the baby may be more receptive if Dad gives it because the baby is becoming aware of, uh, Dad's biological limitations.

Written by AJ on Oct 26, 2005

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