10 Reasons Why The Second Day Of Breastfeeding Is Legit The Hardest

Ad failed to load

So you've chosen to breastfeed, huh? Good for you! There's no wrong way to feed an infant, and I've tried them all, but, personally, breastfeeding is my favorite. In the grand scheme of things I caught on pretty quickly and didn't have any substantial problems, but that's not to say breastfeeding wasn't hard AF. I sobbed my way through numerous nursing sessions, and never more than on the day after my son was born. I'd go as far as to say that the second day of breastfeeding is the hardest.

As a new mom only 48 hours into the job, everything is brand-spanking new. At the same time, you're just expected to do everything because, well, you have to. Moreover, any of the concerns that you told yourself you'd "deal with tomorrow" are creeping up on you, and quickly. So before you know it you're holding a 2-day-old baby and thinking, "Tomorrow is here and I still don't know what's up with that. Is someone going to handle that? Is everything OK? Should I be worried? Because I'm kind of worried. Should I be more worried?"

So before you go into this magical mystical boob quest (that's what I'm calling breastfeeding from now on because it sounds cooler), be warned that you will be tested early on, and for a number of reasons. If you have already gone on your magical mystical boob quest, read on to know that you are not alone in your past woes and tribulations.

Ad failed to load

Because Of The Hormone Crash


In my experience (and I know I'm not alone), a day or so after you have your baby all those hormones that have been sustaining your pregnancy, and all those new hormones that are popping up to support milk production, go bonkers. Don't be surprised if you find yourself feeling so many feelings. Definitely don't be surprised if you find yourself struggling to handle even one of them. Honestly, this process is typical and it passes under normal circumstances... but it is definitely going to make everything harder for a hot minute, including breastfeeding.

Because It's All Hitting You All At Once


The immediate glow (or trauma) of your birth is over and now you're faced with the reality that all your waiting is over and your baby is here. And not only are they here, but they need you. Immediately. All the time. Don't they know you just gave birth and need some rest? If they do, they DGAF. Your petty existence is inconsequential to them.

This requirement to hit the ground running (and not just running but booking it) is a lot to manage in and of itself, but the intimate realization of that fact is just as daunting. Breastfeeding is one of those things you have to dive into and flail your way through for a while, but it's a big one.

Because, If You Delivered In A Hospital, Your Discharge Date Is Looming


Yeah, a part of you just wants to be home in your own bed, with your own stuff, but another part of you is tremendously comforted by being taken care of 24/7 by a cadre of specially trained professionals. Once you get home there's no one to ask questions of, no one to take the baby for a few minutes (or a night), and no one tell you what needs to be done. This looming sense of being on your own adds a kind of frenzied worry to breastfeeding.

Ad failed to load

Because The Lactation Consultant *Still* Hasn't Visited


They said that someone would be in your room at some point, because this is a baby-friendly facility and the lactation consultant meets with everyone. So day one came and went and you're like, "It's OK, they'll be in soon." But by mid-day on day two (and, funnily enough, the days feel really long all of a sudden) you begin to nibble at your cuticles and wonder if they're going to make it in to see you before you have to check out. Neither their absence, nor your worry about it, is making breastfeeding any easier.

Because Your Milk Probably Hasn't Come In Yet


Because either you didn't realize it doesn't happen right away and you're worried, or because you're a Type A person who read that it can between two to five days and the fact that it hasn't happened as early as possible has your overachieving ass all worried. Either way, you're getting anxious at this point.

For the worried unknowing people: don't worry. In the first few days your baby will be getting colostrum, a nutrient rich substance that your body may have been making for a while now and is specially formulated to sustain your baby in the first days of their life. If you're a Type A worrier: no, really, it's OK if it doesn't come in come in as soon as it could. Your timeline is still totally reasonable!

Because Weight Checks Are Terrifying


Babies lose weight after birth. This is very normal, but lots of people don't know it's normal. So finding out that your eight-pound baby has dropped down to seven pounds fourteen ounces is jarring.

"That's fine," a nurse will say. "We just want to make sure that goes back up a bit before you're discharged."

So, you know, zero pressure at all. Certainly not the kind of pressure that could making nursing even more challenging.

Ad failed to load

Because Your Life Is Revolving Around Your Baby's Diaper



Because Three Different People Have All Given You Contradictory Advice To "Help" You


Bless all their hearts, because they mean well, but all that information coming at you at once isn't super helpful. And that's not to say all of it isn't good advice, but being generally good advice and good advice for you and your baby aren't necessarily the same thing. Every body and every baby is different and respond to different techniques. Not knowing what works for you yet, and being presented with so many different options, is daunting.

Because Your Baby Is Hungrier


This was my experience, anyway. Day one my son was totally fine just nomming on colostrum. Day two? He wanted milk and even though he was totally fine he was not happy. There is no hell quite as torturous as an unhappy infant.

I would go to feed him, he would eat for a bit, not get everything he wanted, get frustrated, and, as a result, constantly pop off the breast. This, in turn, would piss him off and he would just scream at me.

It. Was. Misery.

(I should add that towards the very end of day two/beginning of day three, I think, I introduced formula as a supplement and that saved my damn life.)

Ad failed to load

Because You're So Damn Tired


You can only run on happy hormones and adrenaline for so long before sleeplessness (or horribly broken sleep) gets the better of you. Exhaustion affects you in lots of different ways, all of which will make breastfeeding harder and more emotional.

So be warned: day two is a beast, friends!

Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherload, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

The Pressure To Worry About The Gap Between Kids Is So Bad For Moms

"Two under two is absolutely crazy," a friend recently told me upon hearing the news that I was expecting a second child. "Why would you do this to yourself? Seriously, why?" However harsh her words, she was only echoing the same feelings I'd been ba…
By Marie Southard Ospina

To Be Honest, I Couldn't Survive Motherhood Without My Job

The decision to work outside the home once you've become a parent can be a complicated one. Some people don't really have a choice, and go back to work because they're either a single parent or can't sustain their family on one income. Some choose to…
By Priscilla Blossom

I Feel Guilty That My Kid’s Dad Is A Better Parent Than Me, & That’s Bullsh*t

I was scared, and he was sure. I was clueless, and he was well-researched. I was making mistakes, and he was picking up the pieces. From the moment I found out I was pregnant until just last night, when I threw my hands up in the air and left the alw…
By Danielle Campoamor

These Millennial Parents Are Taking Gender-Neutral Parenting To An Entirely New Level

A woman on the subway looks at my bulbous shape and asks, “What are you having?” I take a deep breath and throw a glance to my 5-year-old. “I’m having a baby,” I say to the woman. “No, no” the woman says laughing as she pushes further. “Are you havin…
By Madison Young

I’m Registered At Babies “R” Us, & I'm Freaking The Hell Out

Hi. My name is Abi, and I’m registered at Babies “R” Us — and I’m freaking out. This may sound silly, but after being a die-hard Toys “R” Us kid, I was so excited to register at their baby store once my husband and I finally got our big fat positive …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

My Daughter Is Obsessed With Being "Pretty" & I'm Way Past Terrified

Last week, when I picked up my daughter after school, she immediately wanted to know if I liked her hair. "Is it pretty?" she asked. Her hair was pulled up into two ponytails that were intertwined into thick, long braids. A shimmering pink and purple…
By Dina Leygerman

7 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 20s, But I Will

I was 24 when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter. The pregnancy was a surprise, since I was on birth control (side note: antibiotics and birth control don't mix), but my partner and I decided to continue with the pregnancy and committed to m…
By Candace Ganger

Women Who Miscarry Early Deserve To Grieve — Here's How Hospitals Should Be Helping

When I lost my baby back in 2013, it was because of a very early miscarriage. Because of the little amount of time I spent being pregnant, it was though my child had never really existed, which made the next few years hard — I felt like they had been…
By Risa Kerslake

7 Things I Wish My Partner Had Said To Me In The First Hour After Giving Birth

I don't know if it was the buzz of the surrounding machines, the non-existent cry of our son as the doctors tried to resuscitate him, or the fact that I'd already been through labor and delivery once before, but I knew something was missing after I h…
By Candace Ganger

Moms’ Groups Weren’t For Me, Sorry

I go to my moms’ club everyday of the week, but not usually on weekends. My moms' group is a place I can always count on finding fellow mothers who understand the daily struggles and triumphs of parenthood and of juggling life’s responsibilities. Dep…
By Samantha Taylor

Millennial Women Are Getting Married Later Than Gen X, & The Reasons Why Are Pretty Badass

The battle of the generations seems to come up when it comes to every lifestyle or career choice people make. Women, especially, are an important demographic when it comes to analysts looking at the lifestyle choices we make or the expected milestone…
By Josie Rhodes Cook

I've Had 3 Miscarriages But *Please* Keep Telling Me About Your Pregnancy

I can feel the tension the moment my friend announces her pregnancy. I can hear the forced nonchalant attitude she's willing herself to exude as she fishes for the ultrasound. I know why I was the last to learn that she was expecting; why she keeps l…
By Danielle Campoamor

7 Early Signs You're Going To Need An Epidural, According To Experts

Even if you've constructed an elaborate birth plan, it's impossible to control every aspect of labor and delivery. Complications can occur, proactive measures might be necessary, and your mind is subject to change when those damn contractions really …
By Candace Ganger

I'm Pregnant & I Refuse To Read Any Parenting Books

I didn't read any parenting books when I was expecting my daughter, and I refuse to read any parenting books as I await my second child now. I'm the first to admit that I don't really know what I'm doing when it comes to raising my daughter. A good d…
By Marie Southard Ospina

7 Reasons Why March Babies Are Total Badasses

From the moment you become pregnant, you begin to wonder what your little one will be like. Will they look like you, your partner, or your Great Aunt Edna? Will they be the quiet, thoughtful type or arrive on this planet raring to go? It's fun to ima…
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

12 Overnight Face Masks To Use To Wake Up Feeling Pampered AF

Spring is right around the corner, and as far as I'm concerned, the sunshine and warm breezes can't come soon enough. But now that we're about to say goodbye to winter, it's a good time to take stock of your facial skincare routine. You know, in the …
By Katie Malczyk

11 Essential Products To Pack In Your Hospital Bag, According To OB-GYNs

The minute you go into labor (or think you're going into labor), chaos ensues. You and your partner are likely to get a little frantic, just like in the movies, so you most definitely want to have a hospital bag packed before the day comes. This prec…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

7 Photos You *Must* Take In The First 6 Months Of Motherhood

In my experience, becoming a mom is like becoming an amateur photographer. There's just something about the need to capture every single coo and sorta-smile that leaves you obsessed with all things photography. I know I couldn't stop taking selfies w…
By Candace Ganger

Here's How Early An Ultrasound Can Actually Determine Your Baby's Sex

From the moment you see those two lines on a pregnancy test, there are a few markers along the way that stand out as especially exciting. Amongst them are hearing your baby's heartbeat and feeling that first, sweet little kick. And if you are finding…
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

9 Easy Kid Foods To Turn Green, Just In Time For St. Patrick's Day

The best part about having kids is that you get your own personal crew to celebrate the holidays with, in all your color coordinating and matching glory. And with St. Patrick’s Day right around the corner, you are obviously working on turning everyth…
By Mishal Ali Zafar