My Experience So Far on Pregnancy and Nursing

cartoon14 243x300 My Experience So Far on Pregnancy and Nursing

So, I’m pregnant- hooray! We are very excited to add a second trooper to the clan. Baby is due early September and my toddler is almost 18 months, so s/he should arrive a few weeks before my daughter turns two.

She is still nursing throughout the night and during naptimes. So before anyone asks, yes she is still nursing, and no, I have no plan on stopping. However, I regularly attend my La Leche meetings and I knew  that any of the following could happen over the 40 weeks:

1) Milk supply may decrease, which may cause baby to self-wean

2) Milk taste may change, causing baby to self-wean

3) Nursing may become extremely painful, which may cause mother to begin weaning process

4) Mother may feel “touched out”, and end nursing sessions earlier

I had read the info and was prepared, information wise. I was not emotionally prepared for my daughter unlatching, asking for water and gulping it down. That came as a big and sad surprise at around 13 weeks, and I realized my supply must have dropped. I now know to have her water ready next to me, and in the meantime, I am going to try increasing my supply however I can.

So, what has the reaction been of people who find out I’m pregnant and still nursing? It has been mixed.

Of course my La Leche ladies are all waving their breastfeeding flags and encouraging me. Both my obgyn, and my daughter’s pediatrician have been very supportive and also told me to continue throughout my pregnancy. This was wonderful, as I often hear of many doctors and obgyns that tell their patients to stop nursing immediately.

As with any motherhood issue, family, friends and even strangers all have an opinion on the matter. Comments have ranged from the truly concerned “Have you asked your doctor if it’s okay to nurse while pregnant?” to those that just assume “The baby isn’t getting and nutrients, your toddler is sucking them all out!” to the downright rude “You’re nursing and pregnant? You poor thing.”

There is no evidence that connects nursing through pregnancy to miscarriage or low birth weight. Sadly, there can be complications during any pregnancy, whether a woman is breastfeeding or not. Nursing can cause uterine contractions, which some women also experience after having sex while pregnant. Much like Braxton Hicks, these should stop after a while. For more information, visit the Kellymom page here or if you have any concerns, speak to your doctor.

My advice is that if you know someone who is pregnant and nursing, be as supportive as you can. It may not have been an easy decision, and some days may be harder than others, but your support and encouragement will probably mean a lot to her. I know it does to me.

Have you nursed through a pregnancy? Tell us about your experience.

 

Comments

  1. says

    I am not pregnant, but am still nursing my 15 month old son. That on it’s own has been a difficult situation, as people tend to judge, even if they mean well. Luckily, and perhaps, sadly, I have been able to “justify” our decision because our son has many allergies, dairy being one of them.
    My husband and I are both talking about adding another little one to the family, and the breastfeeding question has been an important issue. On one hand, I’d like to have my body selfishly to myself, for just a little while, but on the other hand, I love the special time between us, and it would be a neat way to share myself with two babies.
    I don’t think it’s something that will easily be decided on, and even with all the challenges, I still feel the good outweighs the bad, as long as everyone is healthy.

  2. Aleka Mayr says

    I was actually still nursing my son at the age of 13 months but it started becoming very uncomfortable to the point where subconciously I was nursing less and less frequent. I ended up weaning him and found out a month later that I was actually pregnant at the time when my body decided it was time to stop. I believe the body knows what it can hanlde. As long as you listen to you natural responce, it’s all good!

  3. PaigeR says

    I have to say that nursing while pregnant in one way was great– it took away my first trimester nausea! Anytime I had morning sickness, by the time I finished nursing, it was gone. And it wasn’t just a coincidental time-of-the-day thing either, because I had “morning” sickness randomly throughout the day. I weaned my child a few months after getting pregnant (I had planned to anyway, so it was unrelated to the pregnancy). I also read that there may be a slightly higher chance of having fraternal twins if the woman conceives while breastfeeding, due to something about more difficult ovulation, and potentially dropping another egg or some kind of scientific crap :)

  4. Alicia G. says

    I’m still nursing my 11-month-old and we plan to start trying again when she is a year, so pretty soon here (!!!!) but I was wondering how this all was going to work. I’m glad to read this article. I was worried that my supply would decrease and she wouldn’t be able to nurse anymore. Hopefully the transition will help her self-wean and we’ll all be happier!

  5. says

    Congratulations, Ladan! That’s awesome! I’m so happy for you! I was still nursing my first when I learned that I was pregnant for a second time. My plan was to continue as long as I could, but by four months into my pregnancy, it all just became too uncomfortable. It was emotionally hard for me to stop, but my toddler seemed to just transition very easily. My milk supply was really low, so I think she didn’t miss my milk when it was gone. That hurt a bit, but it all worked out in the end. Now I’m breastfeeding her sister and enjoying it. I hope to again go as long as I can.

    I think it’s really important to stay hydrated when nursing while pregnant. It’s also important to consume a lot of calories. I’ve known moms who have nursed throughout their pregnancy, so it is entirely possible. I wish you all the best!

  6. maureen says

    I’m 34 weeks pregnant and still nursing my 19 month old. It has not been easy to keep on nursing during my pregnancy but I’m stubborn and just kept on going – or maybe my son is the stubborn one :) I plan to tandem nurse when my daughter is born in a few weeks’ time, but I guess only time will tell if we’ll be up to it.

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