Christine Juliani, Eden (3.5 years) and Iris (11 months)
My wife and I conceived our older daughter Eden in February 2011 using a donor after several rounds of fertility treatments and one miscarriage. I always assumed that breastfeeding would be easy so I didn’t really give it much thought. I was induced at 40 weeks due to being high risk and Eden arrived 26 hours later. She would not latch in the hospital so I ended up pumping, using a nipple shield, and supplementing with formula. Once we arrived home, I continued to have latching issues despite my best efforts. Eventually, I accepted the fact that nursing directly wasn’t going to happen so I decided to exclusively pump. I weaned when Eden was 10.5 months old and had enough milk frozen to give her some each day until she was 14 months old.
When we conceived our younger daughter Iris in September 2013 using the same donor, I once again had high hopes that I would be able to nurse. Iris was born at 38+6 a perfectly healthy little girl. Once again, I had latching issues with her and decided to exclusively pump. At a year old, Iris is having a hard time transitioning to solids so it is most beneficial that I have continued to pump. And since I was blessed with an oversupply, we have several hundred ounces in the freezer. In addition, our 3.5 year old daughter Eden is able to get some of the benefits of the breastmilk as well.
Initially I was sad about not being able to nurse directly, in part because pumping is a lot of work. However, there are positive aspects about it, such as allowing my wife to share in the feedings.