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Breastfeeding question and salute to all moms who did it!!
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Breastfeeding question and salute to all moms who did it!!

First of all, I want to salute all nursing moms.  This is my 2nd baby but the first to nurse.  Bottle feeding my 1st was so much easier.  I am determined to make this work, but with a 3 year old at home, it is proving really challenging.  My dd is one week old and wants to nurse all the time.  How long should be nursing at a time?  Our breastfeeding sessions tend to last 1.5 hours and then she is ready to eat again in 2-3 hours.  I feel like I am spending all my time sitting on the couch telling my 3 year old "just a minute".  How can I be sure she is getting enough and how long should she be nursing?
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134578_tn?1404951303
AndiJ should be able to help you most with this, since she has been in the same position. :)  I would let the little one nurse as long as she wants to nurse, even if at first it seems like a lot.  At least you get 2 hours between feedings, LOL!  (Mine went only about an hour between feedings when he was that young.)

There are good slings on the market that allow you to wear the baby when she is nursing; then you could walk around and be with your 3-year-old at the same time.  When the baby is so tiny, it isn't that much weight.
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Avatar_n_tn
I nursed my daughter who is now 13 months until I became pregnant again..which was when she was 10 months. It was very hard in the beginning but was such a WONDERFUL experience for the both of us!
I don;t recall her nursing for that long. Try going 20 min on each breast...just a suggestion...
I am planning on nursing again as well.... my daughter will be 18 months by then...so i'm sure i'll be writing and looking for advice once that occurs....
Good luck....and stay hydrated! It seemed as if once she latched on, i needed water instantly....
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174483_tn?1327629077
my dd would nurse until i took her off or she feel asleep, she wanted to be on the boob all day long l swear lol, but they are not eating the entire time they are on the boob, there is sucking and suckling, your little one is probably most comfortable while close to your breast and prefers to stay and suckle as long as she can, i recall sitting for hours letting her nurse just for her to fall asleep for 20 mins and want some more, it is difficult and time consuming but soon enough you will be able to do everything and nurse at the same time, i learned to do everything one handed and carry her around and do what i needed to do

ps. i will be in your situation soon enough, i plan on nursing this new baby exclusivly and chase my 2 year old around, so maybe you can give me some tips in a few months lol
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93532_tn?1349374050
All of my boys stayed on the breast for an hour minimum during the first 6 months. I have 3 boys 5 and under. so I understand! I found that "wait a minute" was something that just wouldn't do for long with my older boys. Even while healing (still actually) from a broken tailbone from delivery, I was carrying CJ while he was latched while I did what I needed to do with the boys. I also made sure to allow each on to sit with me while I nursed and gave each one "jobs" to do to help. I read lots of stories, we sang lots of songs and one would "hold" the baby while I helped the other with things.

It is overhwleming and it takes a HUGE commitment to nurse while caring for other kids, but in time it will seem like second nature. I get awesome looks of amazement from folks when I walk in somewhere with a baby in one arm, holding my 3 year oilds hand and my 5 year old has a finger on my beltloop. I am a no-nonsense momma and I can't stand being stuck inside. YOu simply figure it out and feel an awesome sense of accomplishment when you stop and think "Damn, I am not only exclusively nursing a baby,but caring for 2 other boys at the same time"

I have good and bad days, but overall I would not ever consider giving formula, despite all the trials and tribulations. Speaking of trials, time for my anti-biotic, dang mastitis!!

It gets easier, allow your baby to nurse as long as she wants, she knows better than anyone else when she is full.
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Avatar_f_tn
I agree.  I completely understand what it is to have another child at home who wants your attention and I think baby carrying is a good idea for you right now.  That's what I plan on doing.  You're doing great.  Just your determination to do it  is a great accomplishment.  It definitely gets easier as the time goes on.  I remember eating, drinking, typing (for work) etc, as DD was hanging off my breast.  Also, as someone mentioned, make sure you stay hydrated.  When I was nursing, my house had 2-3 bottles of water in every room (in case I needed it) and I was constantly thirsty.  Good luck and remember, you're giving your DD the best food you can ever give her.
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Avatar_f_tn
Sorry, lbf, don't mean to highjack your post but I noticed that you (jerzeegirl) will have your #2 when your DD will be 18 months.  I just wanted to say that it's our story as well :))  I also have DD and she'll be 18 months when I have this baby.  How are you doing?  I'm very nervous about the age difference.  I have tons of questions for mommies who have kids close in age (strollers, naps, etc, etc).  Have you figured everything out already?  
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175662_tn?1282217256
With my newborn my issue is more that she would rather sleep than nurse!  Then she'll take a bottle because its easier than nursing.  It's been disheartening, since I really wanted to nurse her.  
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127529_tn?1331844380
Sam seemed to nurse constantly at first, I think they do and it is about the only thing that comforts them too. I bottle fed my first (pumped breast milk at first then formula) and although feeding him was easier the colic, gas, spit up, constipation was horrendous. With Sam, my second, I nearly gave up nursing several times in those early weeks, my midwife and lactation consultant kept me going, at one point I was finger/tube feeding him twice a day just to avoid giving him a bottle, he was falling alseep at the breast alot and the tube feed was the best way to get milk in him without causing nipple confusion form a bottle. Now he nurses brilliantly and it is so much quicker and easier than bottle feeds once you get the hang of it, plus he has never had any trouble with gas, colic and so on. My problem now is his teeth...... his top two front teeth were the first ones to come in and they are 'grazing' my aereola every time he feeds. I have started giving him a bottle of expressed milk for one of his feeds in the middle of the day just to give my boobs a rest from it but I am still focused on getting to a year with him. Good luck with the nursing.
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193609_tn?1292183893
Becasue my baby was in the NICU for so long, he is not wanting to transition from bottle to breast. He latches on great, but doesn't want to do the work to nurse and just wants to bottle because it is easier. I am still trying to nurse, and give him breast milk in a bottle, but I am not sure how much longer my supply is going to hold up!!!! Good Luck!
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Avatar_n_tn
I breastfeed both of my children for at least 1 year. They weaned themselves. They were only 15 months apart and I never got the first 1 weaned before the second was born. He didn't much like it anymore after my daughter came because he wanted big boy food and "ninny" was for the baby. Both were fed on demand and yes they nursed a lot the first 3 months and then it leveled off to every 3 or 4 hours. They did not have a bite of solid food until 6 months. My first had to be nursed once or twice a night and then every 3 to 4 hours hours during the day. My daughter slept 8-10 hours a night uninterupted from the 1st night home from the hospital but nursed all day long. She weaned herself when she began walking and was off the breast at 1 year. Just relax and let your baby call the shots on this one. I never tried to control or regulate and they both were healthy well developed children.
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Avatar_n_tn
i breastfed my daughter, who is now 7 months old, for 3 months. i loved nursing, but it was just all too much for me. my daughter was a snacker. she didn't nurse for hours at a time until bedtime.. when she over ate and wound up throw it all up and had to start all over again! so i pumped during the day for her and nursed at night. and yes nursing is a HUGE commitment. i regret quitting and wish i would have stuck in there just a little longer because all my friends are still nursing and it almost makes me feel like a bad mother for stopping so soon! but with my next child i'm going to try and hang in there up until her first birthday!
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173939_tn?1333221450
My son nursed for 11 months and for the first month or two it was 45 minutes each feeding, every two hours, meaning an hour and 15 minutes between end of one feeding and beginning of the next. He nursed only from one side per feeding and always fell asleep. Later it was every 3 hours, then around 9 months every four hours.  And after 11 months I drank some herbal cough syrup, the strong taste went into the milk and he looked at me in disgust and anger and weaned himself tearfully within two days. I was not prepared for that and will always remember those weeks pumping excess milk and pouring it down the drain. It took another 4 months to subside.
If your new baby is comfortable in a sling - not every baby likes to be confined - that might be your only way to move around and interact with your 3-year-old. Or you could nurse her during the night and pump some other time so that someone else can give her a bottle during the day. It is hard. Even to take out the time to pump is hard to manage. I admire anyone who has more than one child!
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238474_tn?1192417309
My son nursed for about 20 minutes on each side, every few hours.  I think the length of time they nurse can be related to how much milk you can express from your breast.  So, I never saw anyone address this, I had a "high-flow" breast, and a "low-flow" breast.  I could manually express 8 oz of milk (no pump, just squeeze like a cow) in 10 minutes on the "high-flow"side.  It would take me up to 30 minutes to produce the same amount of milk on the "low-flow" side.  So, when my son was young, the high-flow breast would choke him, and he mostly nursed on the low-flow one, and I pumped the other one to feed him later.  As he got older, he nursed on both.  I finally weaned him at 3 years old, but he was happy to keep going.  So, I think the amount you can pump, gives you an indication of how easy the milk comes out, and how long they nurse on each side.
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151154_tn?1208134182
I'm also nursing about 20 min each side.  He usually falls asleep and spits it out..lol
He wants to nurse every hour or so.  I have a 5 year old stepson at home also.  I understand completely.  Maybe you could pump for a session and have dh feed the baby?  Give you some free time?   Good luck, its a challenge.
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Avatar_n_tn
First, I'd say stick with it!  You're in the rough spot now when they are so new and need to suck all the time. My DD sucked so much the first 3 or 4 weeks I don't think there even was such a thing as hours between (or even minutes). In general if I was holding her she was nursing. It's great for building your milk supply but in my case my nipples really hurt til about one month, in the first week so badly I was crying and screaming in pain. They toughened up.  Just give up doing other stuff right now. Get someone in to help with the 3 yo, to play with etc. so you can consolidate the nursing relationship. By one month you should be much more into the swing--- in that time period I would expect the nursing "time" to go down, to maybe 20-30 minutes.  Mine did have these growth spurts though every few weeks when she would nurse every half hour. You could almost see her growing!  She's 4 months now and in 75th percentile and we're down to maybe every 3 hours during day and she sleeps maybe 4-5 hours in a row (so I only wake up once to feed her).  We're co-sleeping so that makes the nights very bearable (I did it this way with all 3 children who I nursed til about 1.5 - 2 years old a piece). HANG IN THERE. I'ts worth it.
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