Failed Twice...Try a Third?

by Betsy C.
(Madrid, Spain)

As a first time mother I had grand plans of a natural birth, seamless breastfeeding and a beautiful, natural experience all around. Reality? An emergency c-section after 40 hours of labor, a baby with colic who wouldn't latch, breasts that refused to produce milk, and one shattered mom. I drove an hour each way to see a lactation consultant, rented a professional grade pump, went on Fenugreek and then a prescription drug to increase my milk supply and still had a frustrated, hungry baby. I finally gave into exclusive formula after 3 months and I still have trouble forgiving myself.

Enter baby 2. I was determined to "relax" and let breastfeeding work. I spoke extensively with lactation consultants before and after birth, consulted with moms I knew who breastfed successfully, got a hospital grade pump and made a nest for the long haul. My little girl was crying again, all the time, she was starving and losing weight. I did everything I could and had to throw in the towel at 6 weeks.

Now I am pregnant for the third time. At first I said NO WAY to breastfeeding, but now my family is living in Spain (my husband was assigned here for the military) and I don't have access to a commissary (grocery store on base). I am worried about the quality of formula and starting to panic about feeding my child. I am so worried. Why can't I let go of this need to breastfeed? I hope to come to peace with my decision to formula feed from the beginning. If so, Amazon will make a monthly delivery to my house.

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Sep 05, 2011
by: Elsabe

If I were you, I would try it again. Each pregnancy, each birth and each baby is unique. So is breastfeeding that baby. By the sound of it, your biggest heart's desire is to breastfeed and I think you should go with it. But take it one day at a time. If you were successful that day, give yourself a big pat on the back. If you weren't, sit back, take a deep breathe and be at peace, you tried, you did your best.

I'm sorry I don't have any better advice for you, but I just want to encourage you to not give up. Who knows? Maybe you're third time lucky hehe! Small steps will get you there, making big goals in terms of weeks/months might just not be the right approach for you. You and your children are unique, just as your situation is.

You're still an awesome mother!!!

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