We continue our series following three breastfeeding moms through the children’s first year of life. At seven months, what do you do when your baby starts biting, pinching or even hitting while at the breast? How much milk does your little one really need while you’re away at work? Plus, reverse cycling and how to get your baby back on track.
The Boob Group
TBG039 Breastfeeding Expectations 7
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Robin Kaplan: A mother’s breastfeeding experience changes drastically overtime, starting from her child’s birth throughout the month of her baby’s life. Today we continue our conversation in our series called Breastfeeding Expectations. Over 12 months we’re following three new mothers along their breast feeding journeys, learning how they cope with breastfeeding challenges and settle in to the breastfeeding rhythm with their babies. This is the Boob Group, Episode 39.
Robin Kaplan: Welcome to The Boob Group, Broadcasting from the Birth Education Centre of San Diego. I am your host Robin Kaplan. I am also a Certified Lactation Consultant and owner of the San Diego Breastfeeding Center. At the Boob Group we’re your online support group for all things related to breastfeeding.
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Now, it’s time for me to introduce the lovely new moms who we will be following for now the next six months. Ladies, would you introduce yourselves please?
Cherri: Hi, I’m Cherri, I am 31 and I worked a market research. I have one daughter, her name is Cali and she will be seven months old tomorrow.
Jennifer Oliver: Hi, I’m Jennifer Oliver, I am 34 -- 33.
Robin Kaplan: We can check back in the last episode and see how old you are.
Jennifer Oliver: I honestly can’t remember. I am a director in arts education for a nonprofit. I have two kids, the youngest of which is with me today, the name is Bryson Oliver and he’s almost seven months.
Robin Kaplan: How old is Fiona?
Jennifer Oliver: Fiona is three.
Robin Kaplan: Awesome!
Robin Kaplan: Well, let’s kick off today’s episode with some unbelievable breastfeeding stories making headlines around the internet. All of these stories are posted on the Boob Group Pinterest board if you want to check them out.
So, let’s talk about – I’m not selfishly flagging myself, but I wrote an article a couple of days ago that was published on the Lactation Matters blog which is our International Lactation Consultant Association Blog. And it’s quite pointed because it seems like there is a lot of this going on, but the topic or the title of it is When Did Breastfeeding Become so Controversial, Nursing in Public. And so, the article is pretty much about how all of these moms recently have been dealing with harassment when they’re nursing their babies in public. And most recently Britney Warfield was screamed at and force to leave a Hollister store in a Galleria Mall in Houston, Texas and so there is these huge nursing going on. And what ensued during this nursing was quite shocking. So, at the Delaware Concord Mall or Wilmington Delaware Concord Mall there were three women who were essentially just completely harassed by a security guard there, who end up following them, he called the cops on them, he follow them out of the mall and then some other friends posted on the mall’s Facebook page saying like, ‘I can’t believe that this went on.’ So, the Concord Mall responded on their own business Facebook page that the breastfeeding was an eye sour and that they hope you guys don’t mind if I sucked on my wife’s breast in public. Then they went on to actually dismantle their Facebook page but fortunately some very wise mothers took snapshots of it, screenshot so that way it was forever save in an archive.
So, anyhow my purpose of writing this article was, how can we as mothers and International Board Certified Lactation Consultants as well, create the necessary change in our society where women will be able to feed their babies as nature intended in public spaces whenever their babies want to feed? So, I’m kind of throwing that out to you all, what do you think needs to happen so that this doesn’t keep occurring, Cherri?
Cherri: I don’t think we have enough time to discuss so, yeah. This could be like a whole show, we should do show on this.
Robin Kaplan: We will be doing a show on this believe me.
Cherri: Bring me back for that, I’d love to talk about this. But I think that the reason why I think it’s a long answer is because I think that there is so much fundamentally wrong with our society in so many ways. And you know, there was a cartoon that was going around I’m sure you guys have seen over the internet of a woman sitting, breastfeeding her baby outside a Victoria Secret Store or something similar to that and there is this huge picture behind her, I mean like a 20 foot woman in lingerie and she’s been harassed by security guards saying, ‘excuse me ma’am, that’s indecent, you can’t do that here.’ And you know right in front was like half a naked woman and yet I think the main issue is people have a big problem with nudity in this country and I remember when I was in college, I studied abroad in Italy. And I remember sitting waiting for the bus and there was an ad for – I’m on one of those bus stands for perfume or lotion or something and a woman was completely naked. Completely naked, it was probably from the waist up and it was so not a big deal and I remember I was little bit taken aback by just how not of an issue this was, which I think is fantastic. But I think here we’re so like up in arms about everything and so people kind of try and equate breastfeeding to something sexual when it’s not. And so exactly that committee said, how would like it if I was sucking my wife’s breast, which is like, that’s so not even the same thing.
Robin Kaplan: She’s not providing you food.
Cherri: Yeah, that’s, oh my gosh! Things like that make me so angry, I’m really upset and I think what makes me the most upset about it is that some of those women even though they know that, that harassment was completely wrong will now probably feel uncomfortable the next time they go somewhere else.
Robin Kaplan: Exactly.
Cherri: And will feel like they can’t breastfeed or they won’t go or maybe they’ll question whether they should continue breastfeeding and so I think that’s awful. I feel so sorry for them.
Robin Kaplan: I know, well, and the interesting thing was Hollister, they made -- the mall, I’m sorry, made some sort of an apology but they never admitted wrongdoing.
Cherri: So, were those two totally separate incidents like one at the Concord Mall and one at in Houston?
Robin Kaplan: Yeah, so the Houston one sparked a national nursing and so this nursing was taking place outside the Hollister store but in Wellington, Delaware.
Cherri: Got it, okay.
Robin Kaplan: How do you feel about that Jane?
Jennifer Oliver: I was just thinking about how it just – I mean it’s frustrating but at the same time we all as women just have to be advocates for ourselves and so, one of the things I was thinking about, sorry I’m breastfeeding right now, and nobody’s objecting. One of the things I was thinking about that I try and do is when I see women that are breastfeeding and I happen upon one actually today when I was at Balboa Park is that I smile at them and it’s such a small gesture but I want to just let them know that I saw them and I’m not going to look away or feel embarrassed or that I’m just smiling in support. And so, I just keep thinking that it’s just up to us to not apologize for it, to be open about it, to breastfeed in public places and I think and just support each other. I mean we’re 50, over 50 percent of the population. So, it seems like we should be able to, if we all work together on this, you know that we should be able to change this. But it’s just about person to person and how we see each other.
But the one thing that I would add is that I’ve worked at numerous different companies where I’m required to take different training on different things, I have to take sexual harassment training up on my manager, I have to take training about anti-bribery and FCC and all these different things depending on where I have worked and I feel like people who work in this environment it’s always the situations where you hear someone in the library or restaurant or store and they didn’t know better and I think it’s up to those employers to really to educate and train the people that are working in their stores so that, that doesn’t happen.
Robin Kaplan: Well, the problem is too that it happens in public places as well like you were saying walking by and smiling at a mom in the park. So, really educating everyone so, okay we’re going to table this issue because we absolutely are having a discussion about this topic in an upcoming episodes so, we’ll be right back.
Robin Kaplan: So, welcome back today on the Boob Group, we’re discussing with Jane and Cherri and I apologize Anney was supposed to call in today but we’re having a few little quarks with our Skype so, it’s just Jane and Cherri today discussing their breastfeeding experiences and what they’ve been like during their babies’ seven months of life. So, ladies I’d love to start off this episode by just what breastfeeding looks like for you as a mother whose baby is about seven months old and how often are you breastfeeding and how is it going for you?
Cherri: For me, I’ll probably come back to this in a little bit because I know we’re going to talk about this today, but for me I nurse all night long and that’s kind of what’s going on. I’ve gone back to work full time since the last time that we spoke and so, I leave the house in the morning sometime between 8:00 – 9:00 or so and I’m usually try and be home by 6:00 and so I typically nurse her as soon as I get home and then that will pretty much continue until I get out of bed to get ready in the next morning. So, there is a good 12 to 14 hours where she’s just permanently attached to me. So, I want to say –
Robin Kaplan: So intense.
Cherri: It is. I want to say it’s, ‘oh she’s reverse cycling’ but I feel like she’s was doing this before even though I went back to work. I could see that she was - I think part of it was she use to be more active, she’s moving around a lot more, so during the day there were a lot more distractions. And I hope that may be once I went back to work my husband could try and encourage her to take a bottle, we call it the -- she’s on the just-enough-to-get-by-diet which is literally just so she doesn’t dehydrate or starve. I can leave him with 20 ounces of milk and sometime she will take four. So, she’s just waiting for me to get home but - so, yeah. So it’s been – we’re still nursing a lot and things are still great. We haven’t actually introduced solid yet so she’s just breastfeeding. But the nights are very rough.
Robin Kaplan: Absolutely, absolutely. How about you Jen? What does it looking like for you?
Jennifer Oliver: I was just trying to think about the nights. Usually it’s still two or three times I’m feeding him in the night. We’re really trying to not do that, and I enlisting a lot of help from Garrick, my husband. Actually last night is a great example, was completely unsuccessful and I don’t know what was going on. But I think I fed him five times last night. So, I feel like there are days that I’m feeling successful and then I’m having a lot of days where I’m not feeling successful and I don’t know if he’s teething again, he does have two teeth right now.
Robin Kaplan: He does?
Jennifer Oliver: He does on the bottom. So, last night was not successful but throughout the day usually at work I usually try and pump twice, I work a five hour shift from 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 and then I come home, I usually breastfeed him right when I get home and then I probably breastfeed him three more times before the evening time. Right now he’s not taking a lot from me, actually he’s not really that interested in breastfeeding. He is very interested in solid foods and he’s very excited about them and the when I try and breastfeed him he finds everything around the house that is more interesting than my boob.
So, I’m having a little bit of a challenge in terms of seeing how this is going to be able to last all the way up to one year which is my goal for him. And we’ll see, we’ll see how it progresses but I definitely find that I’m kind of struggling right now keeping him interested in the day time. The night time is not a problem, it’s the day time.
Robin Kaplan: Well, which is probably why he’s nursing, he’s having a hard time breaking that nursing pattern in the middle of the night and I wanted to mention too. I’d like to talk about the reverse cycling. We can do that right now actually. But you had mentioned that Cali was kind of doing this even before you went back to work and so reverse cycling –
Jennifer Oliver: I would say probably started around four months or so. And at first we had like a week or so where she was just nursing around the clock, so day and night and four months and I was thinking okay well, maybe it’s a bit of a growth spurt, because you know five months. Then I was just cynic, no, this is going on way too long, it’s just you know, maybe a week or could have been like a really long growth spurt. But it just kept going on, I mean it never change. And then once I went back to work it just kind of you know spiraled out of control and we do co-sleep, which is what makes it really difficult because I know that so many people say, oh, the solution to that is co-sleeping.
Robin Kaplan: Right.
Jennifer Oliver: And I’m like no, no, no, I think the co-sleeping is the problem and that’s not going change. We’re not going change that, so she’s definitely going stay in my bed. But I think she smells me, she knows that I’m there and -- bless you. You know, as wonderful as my husband is, he is just useless with her at night because --
Robin Kaplan: There’s nothing he can do.
Jennifer Oliver: -- there’s nothing he can do. We’ve tried in one or two nights I’ve said, okay, next time she wakes up like just take her and try and see if couldn’t distract her and -- no, no, no, she will just get so upset to the point where I’m awake anyway. Why am I lying here listening to her crying even if it’s only been 60 seconds I can’t handle it so.
Robin Kaplan: Well, and the thing also is that babies reverse cycle which is what Cali is doing even when mom’s around because they are so distractible during the day time and so kind of like Jen was mentioning with Bryson and that he’s not super excited around nursing because everything else is so interesting and he love the solid food so much which is why he’s probably feeding more at night.
So, I actually enlisted the help of some lactation consultant on Facebook to ask them what their recommendations were because when I posted this on our Boob Group Facebook page and the San Diego Breastfeeding Centre Facebook page to moms, most of the answers were co-sleeping as well and I’m like, they already co-sleep. And so, the main thing that my colleagues were saying was one, try to keep in the back of your mind as much as possible, it’s not going to last forever and I know that doesn’t solve any sort of the problem because you use to have to go to -- you have to go to work the next morning which is so exhausting.
And so, some of them said to you that babies tend to cope with stress this way too so, although Cali is with her dad all day that she clearly has a bond with you and your breast. And so, she’s holding off all day like you’re saying. Then you come home and she’s like, ‘oh, thank God you’re home, now I can feed non-stop’ and so it’s possible that some of this may change once solids are introduce and that’s not in any way an attempt to get you to start them early, I don’t push that at all but.
Jennifer Oliver: And I’m sure we will in the next month or two anyway.
Robin Kaplan: Exactly.
Jennifer Oliver: We’re just not on – she hasn’t really been showing any interest. She’s still more completely sitting on support and stuff like that. So, but yeah, and it’s funny because at night sometimes I was thinking – she doesn’t take a pacifier, she never has and so I think, I’m her paci for sure. And so sometimes that’s why it’s frustrating because she’s not actually nursing, but then every now like this morning I was sure she wasn’t nursing. And then all of a sudden she started coughing and spluttering and she spat up milk all over me and I was like, okay – you’re feeding all night long. So, and I think the hard part of the equation is really the work because --
Robin Kaplan: Absolutely.
Jennifer Oliver: -- I manage the reverse cycling for two months with no issues before I went back to work, because I could be a zombie during the day and it didn’t matter. I could look like dead and it doesn’t matter but now that I actually have to like get up and be presentable and go to work and then function it’s just and tapped into a part of my brain that is just so very deep far away. So, it’s just yeah, it’s been hard.
Robin Kaplan: Do you sleep at all while she’s nursing in the middle of the night?
Jennifer Oliver: I used to be able to sleep better, I could just kind of latch her and then fall asleep and lately I find that I’m too – I’m not getting into deep enough sleep, I’m too awake. So, even if I’m kind of sleeping, I’m really not and I’m maybe not sleeping for than an hour and I think a large of part that too was because she is so mobile maybe I’m so much more like paranoid and aware of her now. And I need to get bed rails or get the mattress on the floor or something. I think maybe that will help me to relax to get into a bit of a deeper sleep.
Robin Kaplan: Absolutely, that and magnesium.
Jennifer Oliver: Okay, you’ve told me the magnesium before and I forgot.
Robin Kaplan: Yes, so magnesium is a natural relaxant and you don’t want to take the magnesium calcium supplement, you want to just take straight magnesium and you can take it before you go to bed at night.
Jennifer Oliver: I have that and I keep forgetting.
Robin Kaplan: Yeah, I used to take it when my kids were older but they were potty training and they were waking up in the middle of the night needing the bathroom and then when I go back to sleep I laid there for an hour in bed because I couldn’t fall back asleep.
Jennifer Oliver: That’s me.
Robin Kaplan: And so I started to -- and then I would get anxious because I am like, ‘oh my gosh, but if they wake up again then I’m going to be a zombie the next day’ and it was perpetuated because my anxiety kind of took over. So, the magnesium was really helpful.
The other thing that was mentioned too was when you come home from work is it possible that daddy take -- I know he’s there all day. So, he’s probably like, ‘here you go.’ But having it to where either you nap before she goes to bed or he – I mean obviously he’s taking care of a lot of the stuff around the house too. So, all of these other things that you have to do around the home may be not adding those to your plate as well so that way you can really just decompress when you get home. But I haven’t tried the magnesium, if that’s the hard point, because you are able to manage it, because you are able to fall asleep more easily, that and probably putting the mattress on the floor would be very helpful as well.
Jennifer Oliver: Okay. I will report back and let you know about my story.
Robin Kaplan: Yeah exactly. All right, well, when we come back we will be talking with Jen and Cherri about trying to stay motivated to continue the breastfeed so that your point as well as kind of looking at some new tricks to deal with biting, slapping, pinching and squeezing your breast. We’ll be right back.
All right, and we’re back with Jen and Cherri this afternoon and something that you all mentioned before the show is that your little kiddos were seeming very distracted while feeding. And so, I’m wondering all of these new little tricks of biting, slapping, pinching, squeezing your breast while they’re feeding and so, what’s that all about and has anything work to kind of stop them from doing this? How you’re feeling, Jen? You’re getting squeezy and pinchy?
Jennifer Oliver: He’s not really doing a lot of that actually. My three year old does that sometimes but not my six month old. But actually he’s just very distracted. So, the difficulty I’m having right now is just I have a very entertaining three year old running around and whenever I started to feed him, if he hears her or, gosh sometimes I’m in a quiet room and it’s just the light on the wall or sometime there was nothing on the wall, I don’t know what it is, it’s just somehow he does this thing where he kind of latches on and then he gets a little bored because I haven’t let down yet so he kind of stop and looks away and then finally he latches on and I let down and then he still stops and looks away. And then of course at that point I’m laying no, no you have to commit to this.
Robin Kaplan: Do you nurse him before or after solid foods?
Jennifer Oliver: You know what, it’s both, yes and it kind of depends in terms of where he is on his feeding schedule. I’ll nurse him right when I get home and sometimes he had to had solids right before that so then it would be after. But typically, I think I try and nurse before.
Robin Kaplan: That’s what I was going to recommend.
Jennifer Oliver: Typically it’s before and honestly it just feels very much to me like he is just not that interested and that he doesn’t feel the need like and I say this hesitantly and thinking about my first child where this was never an issue and I really felt with my first child that she needed to breastfeed and that it wasn’t just because of the substance that a lot of it also had to do what it provided her emotionally.
And I feel like with my second with Bryson that he doesn’t need it in that way. That it really is just a substance and he’s getting so, he eats so much solid food. And when I say so much I’m just like astounded with much he will consume and want to consume more. So, I really feel like he’s kind of getting what he needs in terms of nutrition. So, it’s a little bit of, ‘I don’t really need it mom, I’m really okay without it.’ So, that’s what I’m getting from him. It’s nothing than that feels like I can technically work with it just really feels like – this is kind of his preference. So, my concern is, will he make it to a year, I hope so. I mean I’m going to keep putting the effort out and see where he takes it, but I’m not sure.
Cherri: At least you’re not being beat up in the process.
Jennifer Oliver: It’s true, it’s true. So, tell us about that.
Robin Kaplan: So, just for those who listen you can’t see this because we’re not live. Cherri has scratches all over the top of her breast as well as her face it’s – she’s being clawed by a little mini wolverine named Cali.
Cherri: Yes, oh my gosh --
Robin Kaplan: What is going on with that?
Cherri: --and I’m cutting those nails, I’m cutting those nails. I feel like it’s a constant battle her and my cats like someone wants to claw my eyes out. She is still nursing a lot and we’re not doing solid yet. But she is very, very distracted and she wants to breastfeed but she wants to also be looking away. And then even when she’s interested in it and she’s hungry and I’ll put her on. But she will grab with one hand so she’s literally holding and it’s not the other breast, it’s the breast that I’m nursing. And I know that sometimes babies will do that because they’re doing their own little massage or helping the milk come down. But, we have no milk supply issue so I don’t need any help to stimulate let down or anything like that. But those teeny-tiny little fingers, when she grab hold of the skin of my breast or my neck and but it’s usually mostly my breast, it is excruciating and then she is biting a lot too. She doesn’t have teeth yet, but I’m not scared of teeth because the biting right now with her gums is so excruciatingly painful that I can’t imagine that it would be much worst with teeth, I might eat those words. But, the biting and it’s not only will she kind of like clamp down and then pull --
Robin Kaplan: Yeah, pull at the side.
Cherri: Pull away, yeah. So, it’s really and then the other day, I was sitting and I don’t what my – my husband was in the same room but he wasn’t watching us. And then all of a sudden you just hear it like and he’s like, ‘did she just slap you?’ I’m like, ‘yes, she did.’ I mean she is slapping at my boobs and I, I mean I have tried so many different things to some length --
Robin Kaplan: What did you try?
Cherri: Well, I have tried you know – I don’t want to be yelping and screaming and say no, but a lot of the times I’m doing that just because it is just a reaction. I’m just sitting there and I’m nursing her and all of a sudden I’m like screaming and I feel maybe that would startle her. I find a hard time like having a stern mean face or sometimes I’m still smiling and I realized that she’s smiling back because she thinks this was fun. So I am trying to like teach her that this is not fun and that she’s hurting mommy. Someone else had recommended instead of trying to pull her off to actually push her into the breast --
Robin Kaplan: Yeah, if they’re biting.
Cherri: -- suffocate her a little bit because then she will kind of come up on her own. The time that it takes though, she’s still clamped down, well I’m now trying to do that, so that’s not really working. And then the other thing that I’ve tried to do is just, say a couple of that’s it, no milk and you know sometimes she bites at the end of the feeding. So, then no milk means nothing to her but she does it a lot at the beginning too and so, you know no milk, no mommy and I hand her to my husband and I feel terrible because he’s had her all day and then I come home and I’m dying to snuggle with her and to nurse her. And I’ve had her for three minutes and she’s biting me, and slapping me and pinching me and I’m like you take her and I’m not taking her because I don’t want her. I’m taking her because I’m trying to show her that if she does that then she can’t be with me. None of these things are working.
Robin Kaplan: For the squeezing and scratching and all that kind of stuff, have you given her a toy to hold in her hand yet?
Cherri: I have tried but sometimes I get hit in the face with the toy.
Robin Kaplan: Someone actually said that on the Facebook page, so like I gave her a chicken and she slapped me like a fake plastic chicken and they were slapped in the face with the chicken.
Cherri: I think about the problem, I gave her like a plastic rattle so maybe I need to find something a little softer.
Robin Kaplan: So, may be like a soft, yeah little stuffed animal or something that if she hits you is not going to hurt.
Cherri: And I just bought, I haven’t gotten it yet, but I just bought online from two different places so, we’ll try but some like a breastfeeding jewellery.
Robin Kaplan: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Cherri: So, the one is like two beads and then the other was just this necklace with like some kind of wood that was crotched though it just seem kind of pretty. But it was supposed to be for her to play with and to distract her because I know she plays with my necklace now a little bit. But this is longer and different colors and like the two beads I haven’t actually seen it. But I think they’re like food grade silicon like it’s kind of squeezy it. So, I’m hoping that that will help along the lines of her having a toy without me getting beat up.
Robin Kaplan: Yeah, I mean I remember a lot of parents and the support group that were coming to my support group because their babies got to this age, they were saying the same thing and putting a toy in their hand that won’t hurt when she hit you with it seem to help a lot because it kept them distracted and this may actually help with prancing as well like putting something in his hand so that it keeps the distraction very localized so that they were not like, ‘oh, shiny’ and turning around. But it’s actually something right there that might be helpful as well but --
Cherri: Any thoughts about the biting though?
Robin Kaplan: The biting pretty much the pushing in I find is often helpful. I don’t know if you’re going to do any baby sign language with her but --
Cherri: We are, yeah.
Robin Kaplan: -- may be incorporating the ‘all done’ so that anytime take her off and you’re saying like ‘all done’ and hand her off and so kind of as much also taking the emotion out of it as well and so because I know my kids --
Cherri: We’re trying not to have such a visceral reaction and -- okay.
Robin Kaplan: A response -- yeah, and it’s like, ‘oh you’re done and no biting, all done,’ do the ‘all done’ sign and then hand her off or may be just put her in if you had swing or something like that. So, it’s necessarily always handing to your husband, but it’s being like you’re done. You don’t do that and then –
Cherri: And then she started crying and it’s --
Robin Kaplan: Well if she starts crying then you can go to her, that doesn’t mean it’s actually done for the entire feeding session, it’s just done for a minute and then going back and saying, ‘okay’ and you know, obviously she’s seven months old. You’re not going to have a conversation with her, she’s just a toddler.
Cherri: That’s the hard -- that’s yeah.
Robin Kaplan: But just saying like going to the emotions, okay, no biting mommy, we’ll try this again and you know I feel like sometimes the problem’s solved….
Cherri: That’s helpful because I wasn’t sure like how long do I wait before I put her back on again. Because is there really kind of like what I want her to see is that when she does that, then she doesn’t get her milk and I’m like how long do I need. So, a minute –
Robin Kaplan: Let’s just say this, I’ve seen negative associations with breastfeeding and some challenging cases with moms and babies. Where the negative association with breastfeeding is they get it within a couple of times. And so I feel like I had mention Pavlov like Pavlov with the dogs, with the sounds or whatever like, they do get that. So, I think it’s just a matter with all things, parenting being very consistent and but I, no won’t leave it there for five minutes.
Cherri: And she will forget within a few moments.
Robin Kaplan: Why I was here?
Cherri: Why am I here? Right, exactly.
Jennifer Oliver: Why am I here, why am I crying?
Cherri: I mean, so I have two different stories, two different experiences with my first. She bit and then I would have a reaction and she thought it was really funny.
Robin Kaplan: That is so common.
Cherri: She would just laugh.
Jennifer Oliver: That was happening to us too, yeah.
Cherri: And then so, I started doing pulling her off in a stern voice ‘no’ and then try again and then as soon she would do it pulling her off stern face ‘no.’ And that seem to work with her over time.
Jennifer Oliver: Was this with teeth, did she have teeth?
Cherri: She had teeth, yeah. And then Bryson actually, quite the opposite, so he tried biting me once and I yelled out and I look at him like ‘you hurt mommy’ and he started to cry. And then I thought, of course, then I felt so bad. I was like, it’s okay, it’s okay. I put it back but he was so sensitive about it. So, it was really interesting and he’s never tried it again so.
Jennifer Oliver: You mention the teeth, could it be teething at all? I mean I don’t even know how long teething last for, I mean --
Robin Kaplan: Oh gosh, three or four months.
Jennifer Oliver: Okay, she could be teething, teething and there is no teeth? Okay.
Robin Kaplan: Absolutely, absolutely. All right well, one of the other things that was brought up was feeling like, I know Anney had mention this no, sorry she’s not here today. But, just talking about how feeling the milk was possibly going down and what does a typical six months, seven month old baby take? And so, I thought it was helpful to kind of bring in realistic expectations because I know especially when you’re going to work and you’re pumping you hear this stories of moms pumping eight ounces, 10 ounces, but truly from what it says and I’m taking straight from Cali mom and all of this stuff is totally research based. But she was saying that in an exclusively breastfed baby takes about an average of 25 ounces per day between the ages of one month and six month, it actually does not go up that much. And so –
Jennifer Oliver: And doesn’t differ based on their weight or things like that?
Robin Kaplan: A little bit here and there but not much. And so the typical range of milk intake is about 19 ounces to 30 ounces a day even for a six month old. So, sometimes it looks like your supply is going down and maybe you’re able to pump more initially and now you’re pumping a little bit less and it could be because your baby is getting solid and so your body is naturally starting to not dwindle down because you still have milk. But actually it could be that, and I hate to say this, because you know my caregivers were just as -- they did this as well, over feeding the baby. So, where babies are often getting five, six ounces in a bottle three times a day while you’re at work meaning that you needed to pump 15 to 18 ounces while you were away is not necessarily realistic especially when babies are starting to get solid as well. You can actually cut back on the amount that they are getting in the bottle making it more realistic if you’re pumping four ounces per times of two per breast that actually is perfectly fine for even your six months old, even your nine month old.
Cherri: That will be hard for my mother-in-law to take.
Robin Kaplan: It is, it is because –
Cherri: Because she literally gives him eight ounces.
Robin Kaplan: My sons were as well.
Jennifer Oliver: In one bottle?
Cherri: Eight ounces in one bottle and I come home and she says, well I just fed him eight ounces so he should be good. And I am looking at her like, I haven’t pump eight ounces all day like, what do you mean in one feeding?
Jennifer Oliver: So, where did she get the eight ounces from? Is she dipping into like a freeze or something?
Cherri: No, no she just basically combines the two pumping that I do within the day in one and that’s how she get eight ounces.
Jennifer Oliver: Can you hide the milk from her or just leave her with four?
Cherri: I know, I’m not sure I just, I think she just, she really overfed her own children and so, it’s just the way she thinks about it is that I just give them until they don’t want anymore and I happen to have children that will eat until you stop giving them. So, and will fuss a little bit when you take it away. So, she would rather just give them.
Jennifer Oliver: That’s so funny, I mean I have the opposite problem clearly. Cali will take the most she’s ever taken in like a 12 hour a day of me being away was about seven ounces. Yeah, she never takes -- two ounces is max for one bottle I mean, I could never get her to take more than -- and I’ve done pretty imposed ways with her before where she’s taking four or five from me. But from a bottle two ounces is the max and if she’s taking four ounces and I don’t throw anything at me. And I’m pumping 18 ounces, I’m coming home with a difference of 14 ounces. And I actually just recently started donating milk as well. So, which is wonderful but I mean I’m pumping way more than she’s taking so.
Robin Kaplan: Well, and it’s interesting again, the discrepancy of how much moms can pump and so and Cherri you’ve always known, you’ve had an oversupply. And so you know for moms who are just meeting their babies’ needs, because the pump is actually fine and my kids got eight ounces and I thought I didn’t enough milk, and I actually stopped breastfeeding. And now I look at this and I was like holy cow! I was totally making enough that’s pretty sad. So, anyhow there’s something I throw out there.
Cherri: That’s good to know.
Robin Kaplan: Yeah.
Cherri: Because I hear that all the time from people that I’m getting less, I’m getting less and may be the babies was more efficient on taking more from the breast and so there’s less when do go around to pump.
Robin Kaplan: That and just the regular things with mom making sure drinking enough, making sure eating enough. Have you started your period, like all that kind of stuffs. We also have an episode that we released quite a while ago about how to maximize your pumping sessions too. So, maybe there are few other things that we can add into a pumping sessions to get more out.
Cherri: And honestly, my biggest difficulty is just pumping.
Robin Kaplan: Yeah, some, yeah.
Jennifer Oliver: I mean it’s -- I constantly have days, everything from I forget to pump at the house and I only have a five hour workdays so like for me to go get it and come back, it’s pointless because it’s I’d waste so much time of my work hours. And I have the exact same job I have when I worked the full time.
Robin Kaplan: Yeah, exactly.
Jennifer Oliver: So, I’m trying to maximize those hours too. I’m at sites all day and all I can get in is one pump. So, for me that’s the biggest difficulty that I have in terms of pumping.
Cherri: Can you keep a manual pump or hand pump or something in the car just so if you ever forget?
Jennifer Oliver: I do, I actually have my pump that has a charger. So, I do pump in the car. But it’s –for me sometimes I’m at one site and I’m going to be there and back to back observing classes and there is no break. There is no break and if I were to take a break I would miss half of the class. It just have to with logistics.
Robin Kaplan: Totally.
Robin Kaplan: All right ladies, well thank you so much for sharing your experiences breastfeeding your babies during their six months of life. It’s always a pleasure and if you are one of our Boob Group Club members, this interview isn’t over for you yet as Jen and Cherri will be talking about ways to keep your motivation to get to that one year point. So, if you want to learn more about the Boob Group Club just check out our website at the boobgroup.com.
Robin Kaplan: Before we end today’s episode here's a question from one of our listeners for one our experts.
Kim: Hi Boob Group, my name is Kim, I’m from Northern California, I just listened to your episode about breastfeeding and acupuncture. Now my question is for Jamie Boyd, acupuncturist. Jamie, I have an oversupply and I feel like I am constantly drowning a little whenever I’m breastfeeding. Is this something like acupuncture can help with? I’m afraid, to do anything that going to drastically decrease in milk supplies because I think that should work in about a month. I just want to help my son feel more comfortable and help reduce some of this gassing, thank you.
Jamie Boyd: Hi Jamie Boyd, licensed acupuncturist of Whole Family Acupuncture in San Diego, California and I am returning the call from Kim from Northern California who had asked me about the oversupply of breast milk and for her little baby boy and she has was worried that she was drowning her baby with her oversupply. And actually anything acupuncture could do to help regulate them. And she’s exactly right in worrying about over regulating supply especially if she’s going to work. A lot of times I just tried to educate moms about what should create milk in the body and maybe that have been due to her intake of those foods if their supply seems over funded.
So, certain glucolog like buckwheat, rye, white bread, too many greens especially barley leaf grass, things that can actually create more milk and by taking them out of the diet it can lessen the milk. And in doing positions with baby so that baby doesn’t take in too much milk. So, like having the mom sort of lie back a little bit as so the baby can latch on. In terms of acupuncture it can regulate milk supply both good and for both boosting and then reducing supply. However, it depends on how many months postpartum the mom is. A three months postpartum and six months postpartum mom’s milk always self regulates again. And a lot of times women who had a perfectly good supply, their supply will peak at those times. So, I always assess that first before I do too much of the acupuncture in terms of trimming down milk supply. And then also I treat babies so I usually do magnets on the baby to help the digestion so they aren’t too gassy or colicky because of oversupply or having to much. So that’s all and you can always visit an acupuncturist and give them a call and ask them what sort of protocols they do for a mock regulation but acupuncturist should help slightly less than the supply without totally turning the supply down. All right, thank you very much, bye-bye.
Robin Kaplan: If you have a question about breastfeeding or parenting and you would like to asked one of our experts please call our Boob Group hotline which is just a voicemail line you leave it just right on there and it’s 619-866-4775 and we highlight it on an upcoming episode.
Thank you to all of our listeners, I hope you’ll visit our website at theboobgroup.com and add your stories of breastfeeding your six month old in the comment section on this episodes page. Coming up next week we’ll be discussing Birth Interventions and Their Effects on Breastfeeding. Thanks for listening to the boob group your judgment free breastfeeding resource.
This has been a New Mommy Media production. Information and material contained in this episode are presented for educational purposes only. Statements and opinions expressed in this episode are not necessarily those of New Mommy Media and should not be considered facts. Though information in which areas are believed to be accurate, it is not intended to replace or substitute for professional, Medical or advisor care and should not be used for diagnosing or treating health care problem or disease or prescribing any medications. If you have questions or concerns regarding your physical or mental health or the health of your baby, please seek assistance from a qualified health care provider.
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