Letting Go

For some time now I have had to deal with John biting me while I was feeding him. It started right about the time he first got teeth at six months. It lasted for about a weekend and then abated for a while. A couple of weeks ago the problem came back. He bit me for about a week and then stopped. He usually did it after he had nursed for a while and seemed to be finishing up. He would change his latch, grin up at me, and then slowly bite down. I tried not to react strongly, would deny him for a bit, and sternly say, “No bite.” Fortunately, it stopped again — for about a week. Then two nights ago he got me good. Yelp out loud, draw blood, really sore even now good. Ouch! Since then he has tried to bite me almost every time I nursed him. He tried early in the nursing session this morning, so I took him off and gave him a sippy of formula with his breakfast. He wasn’t really into it, but I wasn’t having him bite me. I tried nursing him again right after lunch and again got an early bite for my efforts. Then, he woke up about 45 minutes into his afternoon nap and nursed really well with no attempt at biting. He was really sleepy and there were no distractions (no TV or sister running around). Tonight, we were barely into the session when he tried to bite me again. So, I fixed a bottle of formula and sat down with him. He immediately and contentedly sucked down almost the entire bottle. He has never taken a bottle well from me until that point.

So, now I am trying to figure this out. Is the problem distractions or is it a low supply problem? Did he nurse so well during the middle of the day because there was nothing going on around him, or because I had nursed him so little this morning my breasts were full? Is he biting because he is not getting enough and that was why he was so happy to get the formula? Lately I have been nursing him about three times (rarely four) a day. Once upon waking, once about mid-day, and once right before bed. I hate to totally cut out nursing altogether, but I hate to be bit even more. He is about six weeks shy of his first birthday, so he is almost ready for cows’ milk anyway. Honestly, though, I had dreams of nursing him for as long as he wanted it, gradually tapering off and weaning as he was ready. Looks like he is ready much sooner than I anticipated and now I am not ready.

I will try nursing again in the morning, but at the first sign of a bite, he will get the bottle. If that keeps up, there won’t be any reason to keep nursing at all. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. ::sigh::

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  • isk8r says:

    My group’s had this discussion before, but of course I’m totally blanking out on all the advice, since it didn’t apply…

    Just really happy no matter what that the whole nursing thing worked out so well this time for you!!

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