If you’re on your first kiddo, you know that breastfeeding for the first month or so is pretty uncomfortable. Ok, sometimes it’s almost unbearable. The cracking, bleeding, sore, engorged pain that only a mother will ever feel. But we do it, we do it because we know that breastfeeding is the best thing for our babies. And once you get over that first hump, it’s easy going from there…at least as far as the pain goes. Feeding problems are a whole ‘nother conversation…
When I decided that I wasn’t going to try and wean J when I got preggers, I had no idea that the nipple pain would be back…with a vengeance too. I worried when J started getting teeth that I would have to deal with biting or a difference in J’s “grip”, but nothing really changed. He has bitten me once or twice, but not regular or purposeful enough for me to do anything about weaning. But the last 2 months or so…phew…
I’ve done a little research. I worried at first that the pain was due to a yeast infection or something of the sort. But as far as I’ve been able to find, nipple tenderness is part of the lovely side effects of being pregnant. If it happens to effect you to the point where nursing is uncomfortable…well you’re pretty much SOL. Some women reported that they were in so much pain when they would nurse that they weaned their little one right then.
I haven’t quite gotten to that point yet…but the best I can compare the pain to is what I imagine it feels like for a guy to get kicked in the nads. It’s not always that terrible, usually it’s only that bad at night and on one side more than the other.
BUT unfortunately for me, I nurse J to sleep. Yes, I know, all the “experts” would tell me that that’s the worst habit I could have gotten him into. Oh well, what’s done is done, and frankly it keeps his nursing on a pretty tight schedule. So, the “nursing to sleep” thing aside, this routine that we follow to get J to sleep every night ends up leaving me with a “kicked in the nads” feeling for the first 5 minutes of him nursing. It does go away eventually, but I never thought that I’d be back at the painful nipple step so late in the game.
I find myself hoping that I won’t have to wean J because of the pain. In my mind there’s really no reason to wean him yet, but if it’s intolerable for him to latch, then what?
I’ll talk to my midwife in 2 weeks at my 16 week checkup, but I’m really weary that I’ll be eventually (sooner than later) forced to wean my sweet boy because the pain is too much to handle…sigh.