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Helper and newborns

  1. #9
    rooj is offline Registered User
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    Just to add that Gina Ford also does emphasise that if doctors suggest feeding on demand to do just that. At no point in her book does she say to disregard professional advice.

  2. #10
    Gracey is offline Registered User
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    Hi Rooj -
    My comment was not to bash Gina Ford. In fact, I read two of her books and got much information from them, and then recommended her toddler one to a friend! I just meant to the original poster that it's not always possible to pre-set a strict schedule with a helper before a baby arrives (or in her case, two babies!). That's what we did -- we planned on using Gina Ford -- and it didn't work for us. You can't predict 100% what's going to happen. We had to be flexible and work with what we had. (The helper, too -- that's the point of this thread).

    I did find Ford's tone to be too adamant though. Yes, she briefly mentions in the text that very small babies have to feed more often, and to follow doctor's advice. But for the majority of her book, she really pushes her routines -- and her answers to many Q&A, like why is my baby colicy and crying, imply that it's because people are not following her rules. Most parents will read the text just once, but focus mostly on what time they are supposed to do what. And if you look at the 2-4 week routine, it was, in my opinion, too harsh for my particular newborn, without enough feeding times. I also didn't like her limiting feeding times to a set number of minutes per breast (my particular newborn needed more).

    I am lucky that we can afford a good private pediatrician, who took time to really give us feeding and scheduling advice, as well as home visits from a professional midwife, both of whom told me not to follow such routines. But other mothers might just take the book at face value, and their babies might not get enough milk if they strictly try to "hold" them longer between feeds.

    All babies are different. From being born at 2.6 kg, my baby is now a healthy, plump 4.5 kgs. Thanks to my own routine, she has grown better than expected. She still does not happily go 4 hours between feeds during the day -- not even once. She feeds every 3 hours during the day. This allows her to sleep from 9 pm to 7 am with only one nighttime feed. That's not Gina's way, but it works for us.

    I have nothing against "Gina moms". But I wonder why every one I meet gets very defensive if they feel anyone questions their system or does something different?

  3. #11
    Gracey is offline Registered User
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    Rooj -- BTW, I don't appreciate being told that I am giving "wrong information" when I am just stating an opinion that is different than yours. I think this forum needs some respect for different points of view.

    You say confidently "Yes, a 2 week old baby can go 4 hours between feeds." Well, not all of them. You had a particularly large newborn at 4.5 kg. That statement is only right for some babies, not for others.

    The babies in my family are all healthy, but small -- usually below 3 kgs. Me, my husband, my baby, my niece were all 2.6-2.8 kg at birth.

    When our baby "regained her birthweight" at 2.6 kgs, she was far, far, from going 4 hours between feeds. After 2 hours, she would scream with hunger and stick her fists in her mouth. Her stomach was half the size of your LO's stomach! She didn't reach your baby's birthweight until she was 10 weeks old. :)

    I didn't see the Gina recommendation that babies below 3.2 kgs -- that particular weight -- feed around the clock every 3 hours. My husband and I both read the book carefully. Both of us came to the conclusion that, except for real newborns, Gina expects all babies of all sizes to be following her routines after several weeks. I think if creates an unrealistic expectation that if your kid isn't eating / sleeping at her set times, it is somehow your fault.

    I wonder if her schedules would work better if they were by weight, as opposed to by age. That might be more helpful and more flexible. But that's for a Gina Ford conversation, not one on twins and helpers!

    If she works for you, that;s wonderful. I wish you the best of luck with your 2nd pregnancy! Right. Nightfeed is over and it's time for this Mom's "second sleep".

  4. #12
    Gracey is offline Registered User
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    Oops. I tried to edit that comment and this silly forum wouldn't let me.
    No, of course Gina Ford would not ACTIVELY tell someone to ignore a doctor's advice. But she certainly spends very little time writing about different babies -- particularly small or sickly or early babies -- with different needs. There may be a few sentences. But the grand majority of her book pushes her own system.
    Nothing wrong with that. But -- back to the original poster -- you can't read a book before your kid is born, put your helper on a pre-set schedule, and expect 100% that it will work out that way.

  5. #13
    rani's Avatar
    rani is offline Administrator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gracey View Post
    Oops. I tried to edit that comment and this silly forum wouldn't let me.
    You have 10 mins to edit your post.
    Founder of GeoBaby.Com

  6. #14
    MommyTo3 is offline Registered User
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    I haven't read Gina Ford, so I can't comment on her, but although I am a big fan of schedules, I completely agree with Gracy that there are many babies who cannot go for 4 hours without a feed during the day. My oldest was well over 9lbs, born late, 95% since birth (still 95% for height) and my twins were close to 8lbs a piece and born full term. None of them could go 4 hours without a feed (during the day). I fed them every 2 1/2 - 3 hours. My oldest, an extremely heavy but happy spitter, needed smaller quantities more frequently, my twin boy had severe reflux (spitting up blood, was on meds), so same story. My twin girl could go 3 - 3 1/2 hours, but honestly with twins it was easier to feed them at the same time, and both small quantities (she did spit too but not as bad as the others), otherwise you're feeding all day. However, because they ate frequently during the day, my oldest was sleeping 8 hours straight at 6 weeks, and 12 hours at 3 months; my twins slightly slower, but easily 6 hours by 6 weeks and 10-12 hours at 3-4 months.

    Again, any type of scheduling will help you especially with twins. But at the same time, the majority of twins is born between 35-36 weeks (but don't let anybody tell you they can't be full term and big!!!), and are in general smaller than singleton babies, so not everything applies as it does for singletons. For your own sanity, start a routine and build on it, it will help you. And that's why I recommend MoMs. No matter how great the advice singleton moms give you, it is great to be able to get advice from other mothers of multiples, because it's just not the same. It simply isn't.
    Good luck!

  7. #15
    Gracey is offline Registered User
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    Yes, DO set a schedule. I just spoke with a friend who went the 100% natural route and let her kid sleep and snack on the breast on demane, whenever she wanted, and now she's exhausted. Hasn't slept for months.

    I think the best is to follow old Dr. Spock's tenant: "You know more than you think you do." Trust your instincts.

    When your two little ones come, you will instinctively feel and know when they are hungry. Then gently guide them into sleeping at night, staying more awake in the day, and doing things at certain times.

    Meanwhile, get your helper to do as much prep work as possible before the big day. Good luck!

  8. #16
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gracey View Post
    Oops. I tried to edit that comment and this silly forum wouldn't let me.
    No, of course Gina Ford would not ACTIVELY tell someone to ignore a doctor's advice. But she certainly spends very little time writing about different babies -- particularly small or sickly or early babies -- with different needs. There may be a few sentences. But the grand majority of her book pushes her own system.
    Nothing wrong with that. But -- back to the original poster -- you can't read a book before your kid is born, put your helper on a pre-set schedule, and expect 100% that it will work out that way.
    I've been reading these comments about Gina Ford with interest and I think there is also one point that's missing in the discussion (although, I do realize that a thorough discussion of Gina Ford's formula for baby success or any other formula is a bit off-topic in this particular thread). The point I think is missing is that there are different parenting styles which are largely a product of different parent personalities and it's impossible to say that there is one "right" way. Some people don't schedule their babies at all and that works for them. There are all points along a continuum, right? I think that's one thing that a new parent can't really know until they fully get into parenting--it's also a journey of self-discovery for us parents. So, whether or not the "Gina Ford way" or any other way will work for a particular person has a lot to do with the way that person prefers to perform other tasks in her life. For my husband and I, following a strict schedule would never fit our personal style so we had to compromise for the sake of our baby (and our own sanity) and set up a loose schedule. Here's where intuition comes into play and us mamas have a lot of it. I purposely chose not to read many of the "baby help books" out there for that very reason. So far my intuition has been a very good guide with a few pointers from books along the way. So, my intuition tells me when my baby should eat and I just go with that.
    “Many women have described their experiences of childbirth as being associated with a
    spiritual uplifting, the power of which they have never previously been aware …
    To such a woman childbirth is a monument of joy within her memory.
    She turns to it in thought to seek again an ecstasy which passed too soon.”

    ~ Grantly Dick-Read (Childbirth Without Fear)

    Mother of Two
    JMW, boy, born November 29, 2007, 9:43 pm, USA
    MJW, girl, born March 17, 2011, 4:14 pm, HK

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