I Give Up.

This is a really, really hard post for me to write.

Part of me doesn’t want to write it, but instead keep it secret and act like everything is okay.

I can’t keep on like this.

I took Ruby across the country to a specialist, advanced in his field to remedy a problem. He fixed her mouth, but he did not fix our problem.

My heart is broken.

Ruby still doesn’t like to nurse. She still gets angry, upset, frustrated. Only now, it’s because she doesn’t want the deep latch she is capable of. She wants the breast to sit in her mouth like a bottle nipple.

I can’t keep fighting her.

She uses both of her hands and pushes the breast away from her. She arches her back. She pulls as hard as she can until she is just sucking on the tip – then, and only then is she happy.

The pain is unbearable.

When I hold her hands down at her sides so she can’t pull, she screams. When I cuddle her close so she can’t arch back, she jerks her head off of the breast. When I move forward and reduce the space between us, she cries and stops nursing.

She doesn’t want the breast.

It has taken me a long time to come to this point. I have gone through a lot of hard work and heartbreak to get here. But I don’t want either of us to be miserable any longer. I haven’t cried all my tears yet, and each time I give her a bottle instead, more will fall. She is still my sweet baby girl, and I am still her mama. But nursing will simply no longer be a part of our relationship.

It hurts so badly.

I don’t want to give up. I want to believe it will get better, and she will suddenly realize she likes to nurse, and we will both be happy and nothing will hurt. I’ve been trying to believe it for four months. I don’t know how to believe any more. I don’t know what is wrong, and I don’t know how to fix it.

I’m tired.

I’m hurt.

I just want to enjoy my baby.

Starting today, I’m going to pump milk for my daughter. I will continue to pump until there is no milk left. I will pump for as long as she wants milk, and make sure she is always satisfied.

But I give up.

We will no longer nurse.

 

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  • http://twitter.com/2bkate 2bkate

    You are amazing for trying as long as you did and for continuing to pump. I wouldn’t call it giving up cuz that would indicate failure and you so did NOT fail! Hugs mama go enjoy that sweet baby!

  • http://www.letstalkbabies.com Lisa

    Hugs mama.

    I know this has been a hard decision to make. I can feel your pain and see your tears in your words. But you are doing the right thing for you and the right thing for Ruby. You gave nursing your all, you tried and tried again and again to make it work. You love your daughter and are nurishing her, that is all that matters.

    Hugs.

  • http://www.kristielarsen.com Kristie

    Oh Mandy :( I’m so sorry.
    Please though… don’t be so hard on yourself – you’ve made it this far and have stuck through all the hell in hopes for a light at the end of the tunnel. Be proud of yourself. Do you know how many hundreds of thousands would have given up long ago at the moment it became difficult or those that don’t even attempt in the first place. You are an incredible mother and she is still getting the wonderful breast-milk you are able to pump. Be proud!

  • Jess

    Babes, you didn’t do anything wrong. Humans (adult or baby and every space in between) are all fickle at times, and different from the next. <3

  • Lisa_Amarna

    Kristie said my thoughts exactly. I’m still jealous of those who have milk to give. *sigh* We all do what we can with the limitations that we have in our lives. Be proud of what you have accomplished.

  • http://rubyredmomma.blogspot.com Toni R

    aw I have tears in my eyes. :,(
    I’m so sorry mama, you did so good though! Be proud of how hard you tried and how hard you fought. You are an amazing mama, not many would have gone this long. ((HUGS))

  • http://www.catelinden.com Cate

    Mandy, I am so sorry that breastfeeding has not worked out for you the way you wanted it to. I am amazed that you stuck it out for so long because nursing sounds like it’s been so painful and frustrating. I’m impressed that you’re going to keep pumping, because I’m sure that isn’t the most fun ever. You are a great mom.

  • S.B.

    This choice/change does NOT make you a bad Mom or a failure. There is a time line on the crying and the guilt … Just remember that! You are a great Mom! :)

  • MOM

    You will always have the wonderful memories of nursing Ruby. The bad times of it will fade and the good will remain. Motherhood is wonderful that way! You will miss the closeness of nursing, but you will find another way to fill that void. I did. And look how well you turned out! I love you.
    Mom

  • Stephanie

    Mandy, I just wanted to congratulate you on nursing for as long as you have. And kudos for you for pumping! Pumping is definitely a labor of love. I pumped for 13 months. My two would not nurse for a long time. They didn’t really start nursing well until they were 5 months old. I was so frustrated and hurt by the battle at the breast, that I just gave up and pumped for awhile. I would still offer to nurse once or twice a day. Then one day, little man just latched on and started nursing happily away. Little girl followed about 2 weeks later. Every woman’s breastfeeding experience is different, but know that it’s possible that on down the road, Ruby may decide she wants to nurse after all.

    • http://www.tempestbeauty.com/about-this-blogger/admin/ Mandy

      Thank you SO much for this, Stephanie. That is my deepest hope… that later on, she will return to breast and we can continue our breastfeeding relationship. I haven’t given up ALL hope yet. <3

  • http://jennandtonica.com Jenny

    For us, breastfeeding wasn’t anything more than a means to an end until VERY recently. I did it to help supply, to give us 1-on-1 time, to make feedings occasionally go quicker. Until recently, it was a chore and often frustrating. We cuddled with bottles. We fumbled with the breast. Bottles were easier for us all, so they became the most comfortable. It’s entirely possible to have a close, happy, cuddly relationship with a bottle between you. You fought a hard battle, and you won it by making a choice. And you know what? She could change her mind in the future. Or you may find bottles not so terrible. Bug hugs, momma. Your dedication is inspiring.

  • acjjj

    Mandy, you have worked so hard at this. Do something nice for yourself today and tell yourself “I am AMAZING”. You have controlled all the parts you can control. Unfortunately, some things are out of your control. You have given Ruby the wonderful gift of months of breast milk. You have my utmost respect.
    Cindy

  • http://www.mybottlesup.com nic @mybottlesup

    oh my friend, i have tears in my eyes for you. this hits so very close to home and it is painful on so many levels. i know you are grieving this loss.

    please just don’t forget or lose sight of what a fantastic mother you are to your beautiful babes. i give you so much credit for literally doing everything you possibly can do for your kiddos.

    • http://www.tempestbeauty.com/about-this-blogger/admin/ Mandy

      Thanks Nic. It helps my heart to hear it. <3

  • http://www.calebsministry.com/blog Melodie

    :( Get a rental pump mama, it’s the only way you’ll make it. I’m sorry. I know the hurt. I’m sitting on the edge of “why am I doing this?” and “what if I can’t even get him off the Haberman?” As of right now, he wont seal on anything. Full suction scares him, he thinks he’s being suffocated. I don’t know if we’ll ever get past that, even if we do fix the other issues. Sigh…

    • http://www.tempestbeauty.com/about-this-blogger/admin/ Mandy

      Hugs! Take it slow, mama. You’ve been so patient for so long. It may take him longer than you like, but he’ll get there. You are so strong! And so is he! He’s been dealing with his cleft his whole life… plus in the womb (that counts too!) It may just take him a little longer than we expected to adjust. <3

  • http://www.SimplyRebekah.com Rebekah from Simply Rebekah

    I started to tear up as I read this, but then the photos of you nursing pushed me over the edge. So sweet and yet so sad. I’m sorry, Mandy. :( I’m so sorry…

    • http://www.tempestbeauty.com/about-this-blogger/admin/ Mandy

      <3. You have been there so much for me. Thank you, Rebekah.