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Breastfeeding Guilt

08/19/12 09:02:22PM

I had my son at 18, I'm 19 now with a 7 month old. I planned a natural birth at a birth center, bought cloth diapers, chose to leave my son whole, and of course planned to breastfeed. I went to a breastfeeding class, read a book, etc. Then my son was born, he was placed immediately on my chest and I tried to nurse. I will never forget the way he looked at me, like I was insane. I immediately started pumping and spoon feeding him colostrum so that I could ensure that he got colostrum. For days I battled getting him to latch, failing everytime. I saw three IBCLCs. all well known "miracle workers" in my area. None could get him to latch. So I kept pumping. Pump, pump, pump was the story of my life for 4 months. I kept trying to latch him, failing every time. I tried cranial sacral therapy, rebirthing, nipple shields, and SNS.. none worked. 4 months in, I got chronic mastitis. Nothing made it go away. I went through three rounds of various antibiotics, until eventually my supply dried up. Then the very small freezer stash I had (I had to take domperidone just to be able to keep up with my son's demand,) dwindled away. I attempted relactation. It did not work. So came organic formula and glass bottles... as organic as formula gets. I recently saw my LC again. I wanted to attempt relactation for a second time. I read about lip ties about a week prior to seeing her and asked her about it. she took a look at him and told me that he has an extremely severe lip tie. It could have been corrected as a newborn, with anesthesia and holding him in my arms. If I had it corrected now he would still receive anesthesia but I would not be allowed to hold him or be in the room. He would be taken from me and strapped down.... it would be traumatizing and certainly wouldn't guarantee that he latches now that his rooting and latch reflexes are gone and he has two teeth (i'd be happy to feed him via SNS with formula and any donor milk I can get my hands on.) I feel awful. As a huge breastfeeding advocate I feel like a complete failure. But I know better now. I know to check for a lip tie if I have issues feeding my next child. I'll know how to fix it. it hurts knowing that my problem did have a solution... but nobody identified the problem! I am looking into making the Weston A. Price infant formula for my son, so at least I'll know he is getting 100% organic formula. Donor milk is hard to find in south Florida for some reason. I guess my point is, if you're having latching issues or if you have latch issues with your future babies, PLEASE check for a lip tie asap! and check for a tongue tie as well! I don't want another mama to have to go through what I've been through for something that can be fixed!

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