I'm passionate about philosophy, but after having my girls I'm even more passionate about Mommy Matters

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Please Stop Biting Me!

     I have been experiencing something that many other breastfeeding mothers experience, my baby has started to bite. Now that Squeaker has two lower teeth and is going through intermittent teething pains, she has been biting me every time I try to breastfeed her. It really hurts too, more than once I yelled in pain and Squeaker looked at me in shock, not understanding what the problem was. I tried telling her "no" and being serious with her (for the first time, it doesn't really make sense to scold a baby), but she would just smile and of course didn't understand.
     I debated about what to do and started to give her breast milk in a bottle if she bit me, but she continued to bite me every time. Some people have said that flicking the baby's cheek or other such strategies solve the problem, but I didn't want to do that. It's one thing to try to talk in a serious voice to a baby, but it feels different to start punishing them when they don't understand, plus such conditioning strategies take time and consistency. I don't judge people who use this method, it just isn't for me. There were people who also said that their babies stopped biting, they just did it for a little while or a couple of times, but Squeaker started to do it fairly consistently. I didn't really want to take the risk anymore and I also didn't want to give up breast feeding, Squeaker hasn't ever had formula.
     Now, as a preemptive measure I pump three times a day (which ends up producing 9-10 ounces each time) and give her bottles five times a day. That has been working out well, but it does take extra time. Little by little I warmed up the bottles less and less, so now I can pretty much take the bottle strait out of the fridge and give it to her that way. That is one way to make it take less time, but the pumping itself still can't take much less time. Three times a day is the least amount of times that I'm willing to pump because I don't want to stop producing. 
     It has been a weird transition, but in the end I think it is worth it to be able to keep feeding my baby breast milk. Plus, I won't have to get bit anymore. 
     The five times that I feed Squeaker per day start out with as much breast milk that she will drink, but three of those meals I feed her solid food too. For breakfast I feed her oatmeal and fruit, at lunch I give her some meat or beans with rice and vegetables, then for the afternoon I just feed her breast milk, for dinner I give her more meat or beans with rice stuff (but don't push it as much as at lunch) and make sure she gets a couple of different vegetables or fruits, and for her final meal (which is only about 1.5-2 hours after dinner) I give her more breast milk just before bed. She has been getting used to the schedule and drinks more for the two times a day that aren't supplemented with solids.
     Just so all of you know, if you are considering going the homemade baby food route, Squeaker doesn't like the jarred baby food very much anymore (Squeaker's pediatrician said that might happen because it is more bland than the food I make).
     Through some trial and error, as well as a lot of research, this is what has started to work for me. I hope this helps those of you who are going through the same thing or might go through it someday.

1 comment:

  1. Oh no! Biting is just no fun. I have an 8 month old with no teeth yet, and she's already somewhat of an aggressive eater -lol- so I'm a little worried about when the teeth come in! I feel the same way, flicking isn't for me. I was reading somewhere that covering your breast after she bites and saying "I can't let you have milk if you're going to bite," and waiting a few minutes, and then trying again might help. Lots of luck!

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