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AIBU to think that when I stop breastfeeding has nothing to do with my DH?

(157 Posts)
newnewname19 Fri 07-Jun-19 14:11:22

Our DS is 20 months, he is still breast feeding. He likes a feed when he sees me after work, and before bed. If feeling poorly or teething, then in the night occasionally too.

DH wants a night away from DS, and wants to be able to plan weekends away for just the two of us. He is asking me to stop feeding DS, and keeps saying there's no benefits, just comfort, it's not needed etc.

I don't feel ready to stop. I don't care if DS is only using me as a comfort thing- I'm his mum, and should be used to comfort him. He also gets lots of nutrients through my milk. I said originally I'd like to feed him until he is two ish- then I'll speak to HV about how to wean him off.

Me and DH had a bit of a bicker last night- he thinks I'm being selfish to carry on, and that I'm not thinking about DH and my relationship. I thought he was being selfish for putting his needs of wanting weekends away above the needs and wants of his son.


For a bit of context- DS was born a month early, weighed four pounds, and for the last year has measured just below the 25th percentile, so he's a little thing. He wears 12-18 month clothes and they're often too big on him. Another reason I like to feed is because I'm hoping it will help to fatten him up a bit!

ethelfleda Fri 07-Jun-19 14:16:25

You and your son are a dyad. For breastfeeding to stop at this point would be because one or both of you doesn’t want it to continue. If you want to both carry on then your DH should respect your wishes and wait a while until you can go away. He is only this young for a short time.

I bf my 19mo and my DH is very supportive of this by the way. Wasn’t born early but has been on 9th centile since he was born and isn’t quite in to size 12-18 month clothes yet. He will catch up at some point - I wouldn’t worry smile

happychange Fri 07-Jun-19 14:18:09

My DH makes comments too for us to stop but I just ignore him! grin I did ask him if he's willing to put him to sleep every nap time and bed time without boob and that stopped him fairly quickly

DS is now 27 months and shows no sign of stopping.

Ninkaninus Fri 07-Jun-19 14:18:32

It doesn’t have to be one thing or the other, does it. Your ds could have expressed milk for one night when you are away.

Your wish to continue to breastfeed might not be anything to do with your husband, but his relationship with you most certainly is his business. You may not feel that time away with him is a priority right now, but he is telling you that he would like time alone with you as a couple. Be very careful about not listening to that. It’s extremely important to safeguard your relationship with your husband because it absolutely can be damaged irreparably if you check out too much. Yes absolutely your son should be a big priority when he is so little, but if you want your marriage to last then that needs to be a priority too.

If you don’t feel that you want to leave your son overnight then maybe you could compromise and go for an evening out instead.

RicStar Fri 07-Jun-19 14:18:58

Of course yanbu to carry on as long as you are happy but I would think you could go away with dh for a night or two at this stage if you both wish without it meaning you have to give up feeding.

I think your dh is being annoying about the feeding but not wrong to ask for your time too - now you already have loads of one on one time just not over nights. If you have a baby sitter I would grab the chance - we have no one go have our three.

SmarmyMrMime Fri 07-Jun-19 14:20:14

With a long term established supply, there's no practical reason why you can't have the occasional weekend away if DS is where he feels secure. You don't have to stop in order to have a bit more time as a couple.

Thehop Fri 07-Jun-19 14:20:35

You’re awesome to be feeding still, well done.

If you’d like to have a night away then there are some brilliant feeding pages with ideas for that.

If you’re not comfortable leaving him, don’t.

They’re not little for long so whatever you decide is fine

SoHotADragonRetired Fri 07-Jun-19 14:21:20

I think there's no need to conflate the two issues. He IBU asking you to stop BF but you can have your weekend away. Your child can get by without your milk for one night.

MeltedEggMum Fri 07-Jun-19 14:22:10

He sounds a bit selfish about this, but your supply is well established and a night away won't be detrimental at this age.

Siameasy Fri 07-Jun-19 14:25:27

You can still go away overnight or even for a few nights at this stage and your milk will be fine. I still have milk and I gave up completely over a year ago. I went away with a friend when DD was 18m and my boobs did hurt but my milk was fine. When you’re not there they don’t think of the boob really. You could do one night and take it from there-you don’t have to commit to a long weekend straight away

Tiredmum100 Fri 07-Jun-19 14:25:53

Yanbu to not want to stop yet. That's your choice but listen to your husband and try and sort some kind of compromise. A meal out one evening maybe? Don't neglect your relationship with your partner. I'm speaking from experience.

tympanic Fri 07-Jun-19 14:27:45

My husband has been vocal about my breastfeeding since the beginning. I’ve ignored him and still BF at 30m. My boy has always loved the boob and it’s been an important part of our relationship. We drop feeds as he becomes less interested. I would end up resenting my husband if I stopped because he objected. I really didn’t think I’d be BF this long but I’m glad actually, as restrictive as it can be. My husband comes up with all kinds of reasons BF is wrong but I suspect he’s not being honest. I have my theories but would love to know the truth behind his objections.


Lazypuppy Fri 07-Jun-19 14:31:31

I agree with others, express so you can have a night away. Don't neglect your relationship.

Does that mean you haven"t really done any days out evenings or nights away just as a couple in nearly 2 years?

Ninkaninus Fri 07-Jun-19 14:31:59

It is vital. For so many reasons - firstly, it’s actually valuable for your son to learn that he can be happy, content and safe away from you (and it’s good for you to learn this too). Secondly, it’s very easy to become subsumed by one’s children’s needs and to lose one’s own identity outside of motherhood. This is not healthy and is not a good dynamic to model for one’s child/ren. Thirdly, if you martyr yourself too much it is very likely that at some point you will find that your needs are forgotten, your wants are erased and you become invisible in the household. Again, not a good dynamic to model for your child/ren. Finally, relationships are living entities. They will not survive if they are neglected.

newnewname19 Fri 07-Jun-19 14:48:38

Sorry I hate a drip feed thread!

My parents would be the ones looking after DS if we went away for a weekend. They are reluctant to do this at the moment ( we asked this week ) as DS feeds to sleep, they're not sure how they'd get him down at night, of if he did wake up in the night how to get him back to sleep.

We have had evenings out, meals out, days out, of course, without DS

Jemima232 Fri 07-Jun-19 14:50:18

You can have a night away from your son and continue to breastfeed. At his age he won't need you to leave milk expressed for him. He will be eating a full diet. I BF all my babies for years but still went away for nights occasionally - sometimes for work and sometimes with DH.

How's your sex life, OP? It sounds like your DH has something on his mind and is (wrongly) adducing its cause to your being an extended breastfeeding mother.

Pinkvoid Fri 07-Jun-19 14:52:34

You would have to try DH settling him at bedtime with a bottle or beaker of expressed milk a few times before leaving him with his GP’s. It would be so unfair to suddenly leave him with them and expect him to understand where his boob has gone.

I wouldn’t listen to your DH anyway, it is completely down to you and DS when you stop.

P1nkHeartLovesCake Fri 07-Jun-19 15:01:18

I think to maintain a good relationship after dc is hard, many fail. Making time alone together is the only way the relationship survives. So going away together is a brilliant idea.

You don’t have to stop breastfeeding, start expressing the odd bottle to get the dc use to it then you go away for the night and little one still has breast milk.

Ninkaninus Fri 07-Jun-19 15:02:30

Does he feed to sleep for his daytime nap(s)?

BunnyJumps Fri 07-Jun-19 15:07:40

What ninkenanius said

gamerchick Fri 07-Jun-19 15:14:11

You don't need to stop if you want to have a night away. Just pick up where you left off.

I wouldn't bother expressing, I couldn't get a drop after around 4 months and certainly not at that age

You may find if you're not there that feeding to sleep won't be an issue. There might be a bit of fussing but they can sleep without it.

Purpleartichoke Fri 07-Jun-19 15:15:05

The only involvement your husband should have in your breastfeeding decision is to say “I’d prefer our child get breast milk if possible, how can I support you in making that happen”.

This is such a short time. You are providing your child with excellent nutrition and a secure attachment. When you are ready for weekends away, you will have them with confidence because you didn’t rush yourself or your child.

HypatiaCade Fri 07-Jun-19 15:20:23

If you have evenings out, how does he go to sleep then?

AmICrazyorWhat2 Fri 07-Jun-19 15:20:56

I agree with others, express so you can have a night away. Don't neglect your relationship.

Personally, I don't think you need a night away to have a happy relationship- my eldest is 14 and guess how many nights away DH and I have had since she was born...ONE! It's become a long-standing joke as so many things went wrong that night (trains delayed, missed special meal, weather was crap, etc.) grin
But, we've had plenty of evenings out together and have gone away separately while the other parent holds the fort, so it's fine.

OTOH, I never think it's a good idea to completely dismiss a partner's opinions as that can lead to resentment. Talk to your DH again about your plans to wean DS around two years and let him know that you do want to spend time with him/have nights away in the not-to-distant future. Basically, assure him that your relationship is still important to you.

I say this because a good friend of mine completely ignored her DH's views on parenting and unfortunately, the resentment built up and he eventually said he'd had enough (co-sleeping and extended BFing were part of it). She was devastated, but the truth was she'd never really listened to his opinions when it came to the children (they had three) and they eventually divorced. You need to listen to each other and compromise somewhat.

madcatladyforever Fri 07-Jun-19 15:27:27

Personally I couldn't bear to be attached to a child that long, I have my own life to lead and yes I love my (adult) son very much but there are limits.
If you always put your husband 2nd there could come a time when he feels pushed out and just doesn't want to be with you anymore. is one weekend really so much to ask - he is not asking for a two week holiday abroad.
If you don't nurture your relationship as well it will die.
Without a strong bond with your husband then you risk breaking up the marriage which will be 100% more damaging for your child than not having a boob for a couple of days.

GummyGoddess Fri 07-Jun-19 15:31:04

Do you want a night away from him? That's the most important question.

mondaysaturday Fri 07-Jun-19 15:31:16

You don't have to stop BFing, there's a compromise to be had. If you're worried about leaving DS because he breastfeeds off to sleep then start working on breaking that sleep crutch. Have the last feed of the night a bit earlier, say an hour before bedtime, then start working on a new bedtime routine. It'll be tough but most kids adapt quickly.

Then once he's dropped BFing as a sleep crutch, you can have a weekend away! It shouldn't affect your supply at this stage but you can always express while away if you're worried.

Expressedways Fri 07-Jun-19 15:40:31

You should be able to have a night away and it’s important not to neglect your relationship. At 20 months your DS can go one night without breast milk. If you want to carry on feeding then great, of course your DH shouldn’t tell you to stop, but there’s absolutely no reason why this should mean you can’t have a break. However, if your parents are reluctant to have him then that’s a separate issue. If they live local to you then maybe could do a dry run where he stays with them but you don’t go anywhere and are on call should he really, really not settle? If it goes will then book that weekend away! If it’s a disaster then your DH will have to let go of the idea for now.

Happyspud Fri 07-Jun-19 15:42:57

Actually I think your DH does in fact have every right to voice an opinion on things that are effecting your family.

I’d personally be open to the fact that my bf was trapping effecting other members of my family but I guess women can be very militant about the ‘protected status’ of breastfeeding.

Happyspud Fri 07-Jun-19 15:43:20


CaptainDamaged Fri 07-Jun-19 15:45:17

YANBU OP! Keep feeding for as long as you and your little guy want. My MIL keeps asking me when I’m going to stop feeding my 11month old dd, according to her breastfeeding past 9 months is “unnatural and some kind of mother perversion” grin

I said to DP I’ll continue to breastfeed dd until she’s 6 just to piss her off grin

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 15:50:06

@madcat you couldnt bear to be attached to a child that long?! So you couldnt bear to aim at who and nhs bf guidelines? You couldnt bear to do the thing that most developmental pschys will tell you forms secure attachment? Or is it the secure attachment itself you have a problem with? The judgmental ('couldnt bear') tone is bizarre. And on nurturing the relationship. Her DH is an adult. One would hope he would be able to see that it is his child who should come first... In particular in the first few years of their lives. These bf threads seem to always get one or two posters who try and fill the OP with fear that if she doesnt start nurturing her relationship (read fulfilling her caring responsibilities to her husband), then her marriage may be put in peril. God sake. Misogyny much. These are adult men. Men who should in fact understand the importance of bf in first two years and beyond and actually support it, not compete with it.
OP, would u enjoy this w end? I bf'ed for 24 months. I would not have enjoyed this. And I dont think my son would have either. When i did come to stopping, it wasnt half as terrible as i thought it would be. But we were both still sad about it. I was glad to be there to give him hugs. I wouldnt have liked the idea of him sad because he couldnt have smt that gave him comfort and also missing me at the same time. If this is how you are feeling, then dont go. You wont enjoy it. Your son wont enjoy it. The only person who would is your husband. Why, on earth, should his enjoyment trump your feelings and your childs needs and comfort?

Ninkaninus Fri 07-Jun-19 15:53:17

Let’s not throw the judgy stone whilst simultaneously being incredibly judgy, eh?

Not everyone wants to breastfeed. That’s their prerogative, and their babies will be just fine.

Singleandproud Fri 07-Jun-19 15:53:36

It took my milk nearly a year to completely dry up. I fed DD until she was 3, towards the end she would regularly go 5/6 days without feeding so having a couple of nights away shouldn’t be an issue for your supply.

Just for some reference as you go forward, once DD stopped teething at 2.5 feeds reduced dramatically to the above schedule until she decided to stop. At points when she was teething particularly her molars between 2 - 2.5 years feeds could be similar To a newborn routine. Comfort is important and the act of breastfeeding releases endorphins/natural painkillers. I don’t see why comfort is any less important than nutrition.

Lweji Fri 07-Jun-19 15:53:46

If both you and your child are happy breastfeeding for whatever reason, then by all means, you should keep going.

I'm just not so sure it will help him grow at that age, though. Formula would probably be better, in fact, particularly as you're only feeding in the afternoon and the evening and not throughout the day.
Comfort, yes. "Fattening", probably not. (someone will come along and dispute this, I expect)

humblebumblebees Fri 07-Jun-19 15:55:16

What Ninkaninus said. It's as important to look after your marriage as it is to look after your son. Ultimately your son's stability, wellbeing and happiness is dependent on a happy and fulfilling relationship enduring with your DH.

Your DH is telling you something important. I think you should pay attention.

madcatladyforever Fri 07-Jun-19 15:58:58

Oh come off it beardy button, we are all different. My son is a super healthy marathon runner getting on for 40 now doesn't have a single filling and hasn't had a day off work, he has a university degree too. Stop making people who don't want to breastfeed feel like shit!
I can't bear self rightous mums who tell you that you must have a natural birth and breastfeed until they are 5 or you are a terrible mother!
Not all of us want to and that's ok too. Me my son are extremely close and always have been.
Don't you think a husband deserves any consideration at all, that he should just be told to shut up and put up because he wants one night away with his wife?
The worlds gone mad.

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 16:00:50

@captain. 'Mother perversion'.... I mean honestly! Love your reply though.

These threads make me a bit mad. Im all for fed is best if it means not judging those who must or choose bottle feeding. But come on! The evidence is uncontroversial. In so so many ways bf is so important.

My husband is far from perfect. But i am so thankful for his support of me bfing. I am so grateful for the gratitude he showed me. This shite of 'ooooo it might end your marriage'. I mean seriously. If women have to think like this. I better stop breast feeding as it means im not paying enough attention to my husband, then i am not sure the marriage is worth having.

OP im not saying this about your marriage. Not at all. Just these fantasy marriages, 'with great guys', that are so fragile they cant survive a couple of years of the mother 'neglecting' the marriage in order to prioritise the needs and comfort of the child.

MorondelaFrontera Fri 07-Jun-19 16:02:24

They are reluctant to do this at the moment

which is completely fair enough, but it means the BF has nothing to do with anything

RedSheep73 Fri 07-Jun-19 16:03:34

Well if he was trying to actually stop you, that would be unreasonable. But can't he have an opinion, since it affects him too?

Ninkaninus Fri 07-Jun-19 16:04:55

Actually my advice centres the woman, not the man. It isn’t healthy for a woman to completely lose herself in her children, and the mummy-martyr narrative is incredibly misogynistic. It absolutely is not wrong to prioritise one’s relationship with the man one loves and to feed and nurture it and be vigilant against neglect thereof.

Lweji Fri 07-Jun-19 16:05:42

Why does he think weekends away are essential for the relationship?

Wellthatwastricky Fri 07-Jun-19 16:05:48

Wow, beardy!

you couldnt bear to be attached to a child that long?! So you couldnt bear to aim at who and nhs bf guidelines? You couldnt bear to do the thing that most developmental pschys will tell you forms secure attachment? Or is it the secure attachment itself you have a problem with? The judgmental ('couldnt bear') tone is bizarre. And on nurturing the relationship.

If ever there was a time for pot kettle black this it grin well, I BF DC one for a year who then self-weaned. Should I have kept shoving my boob in his face and force him to feed for another 12 months in order to meet the WHO guidelines? I had to stop much sooner with DC2 for medical reasons and was devastated and felt horrific guilt but I never had the teeniest intention of carrying on past a year with either and couldn't have born doing it past then either. Your language is highly emotive and judgemental.

OP, your DH should respect your choices but perhaps it wouldn't hurt to look at alternative ways to settle DC, as you'd all benefit, and make it easier when you are ready to stop BF. And I do agree, don't be too quick to dismiss your DH's feelings, it's not misogyny FFS, you're a family and these things affect everyone.

Lweji Fri 07-Jun-19 16:07:17

Breastfeeding at the end of the day for a couple of years is hardly martyrdom and no marriage ever survived or not because of weekends away or at home.

HK2009 Fri 07-Jun-19 16:07:30

I absolutely think he should be allowed to voice his opinion.
Did you not have a conversation before DS was born about whether you would breast/bottle feed etc?

He's as much a parent as you are and should be allowed an input regarding his son.

It also feels like you're putting yourself and your son ahead of DH which is unfair

BrokenWing Fri 07-Jun-19 16:07:49

You can teach your ds not to use bf as a comfort to fall asleep and still bf so it is not a reason for him not to go to gp or for you and dh to go away.

Do you want to leave your ds/go away with you dh for the weekend? If you do it is not bf that is stopping you.

LeekMunchingSheepShagger Fri 07-Jun-19 16:08:37

I think you need to stop using breast feeding as an excuse not to go away with your dh. A night away doesn't mean you have to stop breast feeding.

You need to work on the feeding to sleep first obviously.

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 16:08:58

@madcat im really happy your kid is doing so well. Your anecdotal evidence does not support the conclusion that bottle is best. It may be a better decision to bottle feed in particular circumstances (mental health of mother, weight gain of baby etc), but looking at large populations, it is uncontroversially true that bf is best for babies. Thats the way scientific evidence works.

And what about the husband??? If hes up for competing with his own child, putting his enjoyment ahead of the childs needs and comfort? The baby is used to bf at night. He will want that while his mother is away. It will upset him that he cannot have that and he cannot find his mother. If it was me, and i was still bf, and i needed to be away because of work or a bereavement, then i d be upset at the idea of this. But id still do it. But for my husbands enjoyment. Nope!

alreadytaken Fri 07-Jun-19 16:09:05

Your marriage is more important to you and your son long term than breastfeeding for a few extra days. If anything happened and you needed to be, say, in hospital, your son would have to settle with someone else and its a good idea for him to be less dependent on feeding to sleep.

That sint to say you need to give up - you can continue feeding without being obsessive over it.

FurryGiraffe Fri 07-Jun-19 16:09:28

But can't he have an opinion, since it affects him too?

But the problem isn't BF- it's that DS won't settle at night without a BF. If he's desperate for a night away then he can work hard on trying to settle DS without boobs. Problem solved.

humblebumblebees Fri 07-Jun-19 16:09:59

It's interesting and not altogether a good sign that the OP doesn't sound that keen on special time away with her DH.

When my children were that age, breastfeeding aside, I couldn't wait for my mum's annual visit when we could steal away to a nice hotel for some special time together. It was like nourishment for our marriage which sustained us during a very difficult time when, quite rightly, the children were our priority 364 days a year.

We've been married over 40 years and are close to our adult children. No harm done and a lot of good.

SandyY2K Fri 07-Jun-19 16:11:56


It doesn’t have to be one thing or the other, does it. Your ds could have expressed milk for one night when you are away.

Your wish to continue to breastfeed might not be anything to do with your husband, but his relationship with you most certainly is his business. You may not feel that time away with him is a priority right now, but he is telling you that he would like time alone with you as a couple. Be very careful about not listening to that. It’s extremely important to safeguard your relationship with your husband because it absolutely can be damaged irreparably if you check out too much.

I totally agree.

Your DH is correct in that your DS doesn't need breastmilk at 20 months.

Needs and wants are different.

It's much better he's communicating how he feels. It'll serve your marriage well to acknowledge his feelings.

Gatehouse77 Fri 07-Jun-19 16:14:04

Apart from DC1 mine stopped of their own accord but when they went down to just a bedtime feed I'd give them that and then go. It was possible to have 24 hours away with DH as we'd be back for the next bedtime.

For me (and us) our relationship was just as important to spend time on and nurturing as the children. It doesn't have to be one or the other.

What compromises have you offered?

Singleandproud Fri 07-Jun-19 16:15:19

The other thing you have to think about is that as DS gets older there are times he may have to be comforted by other people.

Whilst bf DD at a similar age I was taken into hospital overnight, she had to be settled by my parents and they say it was fine. She still wants me with her when she goes to sleep if I’m around even now and she’s 10 but if I’m not then she sleeps just fine without me. If you are out of sight it’ll be easier.

Lweji Fri 07-Jun-19 16:15:41

Regarding nights away, I went away when DS was 3 months old and breastfed for over a year.
I did stop then because I was going away for a week or so.

It's not likely that your child will need breastfeeding to fall asleep if you are not around. And, as pointed out, you can dissociate bf from falling asleep, which is healthy in general anyway.

Why not ask the grandparents to have him for one night occasionally to see if they can settle him to sleep? That would reassure them and get him used to spend some nights away from you. If having child free nights or away is also important to you (or for whatever reason is so important to your OH).

And, BTW, you can still have weekends away with baby in tow. You don't need to be stuck at home.
I suppose what he means is child free nights.

Gatehouse77 Fri 07-Jun-19 16:17:18

And why is "when I stop breastfeeding has nothing to do with my DH"?

He's a parent too. What can't he start a discussion about his views?

Jimjamjong Fri 07-Jun-19 16:18:08


Veterinari Fri 07-Jun-19 16:20:46

@BeardyButton you sound incredibly judgemental - another poster is taking about her own limits not judging anyone. In fact the only person being judgemental on this thread appears to be you.

There's No robust evidence that extended breastfeeding has any medical advantages - WHO guidelines are formulated to maximise benefit on a global level and in many countries where a clean water supply is not available, Breast feeding is safer. That doesn't Give you a right to judge and criticise the choices of other mums in the UK, a country where we are fortunate to have choices.

And in terms of choices, yes women can choose to prioritise their focus solely on the child and disregard the viewpoints of their partner. He can also make his own choices - and they might not include unconditional support of unilateral parenting decisions.

FurryGiraffe Fri 07-Jun-19 16:22:23

Why not ask the grandparents to have him for one night occasionally to see if they can settle him to sleep?

Perfectly reasonable suggestion but why doesn't the OP's DH try first? He is after all the child's parent- surely it's his job to try and establish settling routines, not that of the GPs, particularly as the need to establish said routines is primarily driven by his desire to leave DS for the night.

madcatladyforever Fri 07-Jun-19 16:23:09

Sigh...I'm not saying bottle feeding is best beardy button! I never said that, It wasn't best for me. Having been sexually abused as a young girl I couldn't cope with it. I felt it would be better not to do it than to have a mental breakdown trying to breastfeed.
And as for the husband, we are not talking about his pleasure we are talking about ONE SINGLE night for him and his wife to bond as a couple out of 2 years. But of course if you think husbands are totally irrelevant and should shut up and put up all the time their kids are young then good luck with that.
They matter as well, it's not just about mum and baby unless you are a single parent. The family unit is important too. No family benefits from their parents relationship going south and babies need their dads too - it sounds to me as if dad isn't getting a look in here.

Crunchymum Fri 07-Jun-19 16:24:03

My DP made the odd comment from when DC was about a year old. She finally (self) weaned aged 2y 8m.... as I was 15 weeks pregnant!!

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 16:24:18

@gatehouse because it is the mothers body and the childs needs. What sort of childcentered (not self centered masquerading as marriage sustanance) motivation might the father have for wanting a mother to stop bf? In particular if he has read WHO and NHS guidelines?

Hullabaloo31 Fri 07-Jun-19 16:27:12

You can easily do both. By that age I was still feeding both of mine first and last thing, but had to do 2 nights away for work every now and again. They just had a bottle of warm cows milk if H really couldn't settle them in the night, I couldn't express anything by that point anyway and they had cows milk during the day anyway.

dustarr73 Fri 07-Jun-19 16:29:12

I bf and went on weekends away.Maybe do an overnighter.Let your dc go to your parents and you stay home with your partner.That way if he needs you ,you can be there.

AmeriAnn Fri 07-Jun-19 16:32:31

It doesn’t have to be one thing or the other, does it. Your ds could have expressed milk for one night when you are away

He's not breast feeding for nourishment, he needs his mum for comfort. This is normal and lovely.

redspider1 Fri 07-Jun-19 16:32:55

You do need to consider your marriage.

GummyGoddess Fri 07-Jun-19 16:33:10

I had one night away from dc1 when I was hospitalised for hyperemesis, I don't want to be away from him. If op is the same, why would her DH want to go away with someone who would rather be elsewhere?

Wanting to spend a night away from my DC is as alien to me as not wanting to spend a night away from them seems to be for others.

Wellthatwastricky Fri 07-Jun-19 16:33:33

Perfectly reasonable suggestion but why doesn't the OP's DH try first? He is after all the child's parent- surely it's his job to try and establish settling routines, not that of the GPs, particularly as the need to establish said routines is primarily driven by his desire to leave DS for the night.

He may have done. It might not be the case with the OP, but I can think of at least one friend I know who admitted she secretly liked being the only one who could settle DC through BF- she liked having the USP as it were, and would always insist on going in and feeding the baby to sleep whenever the DHs attempted to settle without BF.

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 16:37:16

@gummy exactly! It s so clear she doesnt want to. If she wanted to. Or had to. It would be a different thread. Correct me if I am wrong op, but it seems like you feel coerced.
And then there are loads of posters saying she ibu. Its bizarre to me. Like something from the 1950s. Husbands need care too.... It doesnt matter if the baby will be upset. It doesnt matter that the woman will be stressed. You must sustain your marriage.

FredFlinstoneMadeOfBones Fri 07-Jun-19 16:38:48

My first only breastfed to sleep but we did manage to wean him off that before stopping breastfeeding entirely. I agree with you that there are continued benefits and you shouldn't stop BF until ready but that doesn't seem like an insurmountable problem in terms of having time away.

FredFlinstoneMadeOfBones Fri 07-Jun-19 16:39:20

On the other hand if aside from BF you're not ready for a night away from DS that is valid too.

CharityConundrum Fri 07-Jun-19 16:42:16

I had similar with my husband (my son is older though!) and when we talked about it it turned out that we both had the same end goal in mind, but different approaches of how to get there.

We both want my son to sleep through the night, to be able to be settled by someone other than me and for us to be able to leave him with loving grandparents without worrying that he will be unsettled for an evening or overnight.

To my husband, this meant me stopping breastfeeding to achieve this, but I suggested that feeding would stop or at least become less vital naturally if we both made a bit more effort to engineer situations in which he would settle our son without me. Once we talked about it, we decided that would be a gentler and more positive option than trying to do it the other way round and it has been largely successful (and, handily, means that I need to go out of an evening sometime to facilitate this!).

SilentSister Fri 07-Jun-19 16:42:19

Because Beardy Apart from the fact that stable and happy marriages make for stable and happy kids, your kids are only with you for 20 odd years, hopefully, a marriage would last for 50+

Usuallyinthemiddle Fri 07-Jun-19 16:45:50

If you keep telling him his child and wife are nothing to do with him, it's no wonder he's concerned and trying to put some work into his marriage!

FredFlinstoneMadeOfBones Fri 07-Jun-19 16:47:23

I think some posters are being stupidly dramatic. A marriage can survive without nights away which is a luxury many don't have anyway.

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 16:49:14

@madcat I am very sorry to hear about your history. I am impressed at your fortitude.

Of course husbands matter. I dont think OP wants this w end. I dont think the baby wants this. Why should OPs husbands desires decide this?

Husbands matter. Which is why i jst sent a txt to mine thanking him for never forcing me to make a choice like this.

And as to breast or bottle. It sounds like you did do the very best in your situation. In particular cases, bottle actually is sometimes best.

GummyGoddess Fri 07-Jun-19 16:49:40

@SilentSister the child only needs such intense input for 3-5 years, what's 3-5 years out of a 50+ year marriage?

Roomba Fri 07-Jun-19 16:49:49

DS2 was still bf at 2 - sometimes multiple times per night as he didn't sleep well and it was the only thing that got him to sleep in <5 mins! He started staying overnight at his father's at this age after we split. It didn't affect my supply or have any effect really - he'd only be there for one night a week at that point. Which probably proves my ex's point that it wasn't 'needed' per se, but I still told him it was none of his business frankly. If it is 'just for comfort', would you deny a toddler any other form of comfort for no scientific or logical reason? Deny them hugs, kisses, their favourite toy, just because they could survive without it? No? Then why deny them this is you are still perfectly happy to continue?

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 16:52:00

Ah but @gummy have you not considered the poor menz hurtz feels? Those 5yrs of hurtz feels could end an otherwise perfect marriage.

Thequaffle Fri 07-Jun-19 16:53:13


Veterinari Fri 07-Jun-19 17:00:47

You keep throwing around the NHS and WHO guidance like you believe it’s some kind of evidence-based-law, but don’t seem able to critically evaluate the context of that guidance. Or actually understand that guidance is not equivalent to ‘compulsory’ E.g the global context of the WHO guidelines that I mentioned above, and also the fact the NHS does not actually recommend that babies are breastfed until the age of 2, it simply states that the WHO recommends this, so your confident assertions aren’t quite accurate.

You’re coming across as unpleasant and militant, with inaccurate assertions and unpleasant judgements - using terms like ‘coerced’ please explain how the OP who has been breastfeeding for 20 months is being coerced to do anything simply because her DH would like some input into parenting decisions and a night away with his wife. Honestly you sound ludicrous - get a grip!

You may also be interested to note that Dr Max Davie, from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, says there is limited evidence of additional nutritional benefit beyond the age of two.

"By the age of two, a child should get all the nutrients required through their diet so there is no additional benefit to breastfeeding over this age."

Ninkaninus Fri 07-Jun-19 17:01:38

Just stop it with that menz claptrap. It makes you look incredibly stupid. My feminist credentials are just fine thanks, and you don’t get to proclaim that you hold a monopoly on caring about women’s issues. People have been perfectly balanced here and have offered their opinions for the OP to weigh up. Nobody has said that the man’s needs or wants should be the only consideration here. A mother does not have to give herself up completely in order to be a good mother, and it is perfectly possible to have a good balance between prioritising one’s children and nurturing one’s intimate relationship and closeness with one’s partner, for the benefit of all* in the unit, ^including the children.

Cruelstepmother Fri 07-Jun-19 17:04:58

How's your sex life, OP? It sounds like your DH has something on his mind and is (wrongly) adducing its cause to your being an extended breastfeeding mother.

Or perhaps rightly, @Jemima232 - I notice OP hasn't answered the question!

OP, is everything in the house BabyBabyBaby and he'd just like a break from it? I mean, like, is every surface covered with nappies and bottles, the cot in your bedroom, everything smelling of baby sick, etc.? Babies are important and special but I hope your DH is, too.

GummyGoddess Fri 07-Jun-19 17:05:26

There's no nutritional benefit, but there are other benefits. E.g. the reasons I will feed as long as possible are because it makes my DC feel secure and relaxed, stops them crying when hurt, widens Eustachian tubes so reducing the risk of ear issues (very important as DH suffered badly as a child), I love the cuddles and also easy to digest when they are unwell and off their food.

Nutrition is not the only point to breastfeeding.

Ninkaninus Fri 07-Jun-19 17:06:53

And hopefully OP will come back to shed a bit more light. I didn’t get the sense that she has any issues with leaving her ds for the night (they have asked parents to do this and it’s the parents who are worried about potential issues with soothing during the night), it sounds as if DH has reacted to DPs worries by saying well if you wean him that shouldn’t be an issue. There is no need to stop breastfeeding, as plenty of people have pointed out.

If I had any inkling that OP was unsure about leaving her child overnight my advice would obviously have been different. Of course it’s not okay for her to feel coerced into doing something she doesn’t want to do. However I’m not getting the sense that she would be the type to be coerced - as evidenced by the title of this thread!

Xmasbaby11 Fri 07-Jun-19 17:10:00

Yanbu but I'd hate to be tied to bf so regularly. you're lucky to have the option to go away with your dh and it's nice he wants time together. I'd try my absolute best to drop the bedtime feed.

Ginger1982 Fri 07-Jun-19 17:12:37

I think the husband has a right to enquire when he might get a night alone with his wife, but obviously he has expressed this badly. It's obviously up to the OP if and when she wants to stop and if she doesn't want to go away, fine.

But let's not be judgy and turn this into bottle v breast because I couldn't breastfeed beyond the first day and my attachment to my son is perfect thanks very much!

Ninkaninus Fri 07-Jun-19 17:14:15

I’m not interested in a bunfight so I’m going to bow out now, I’ve no interest in arguing with people about very subjective things.

Iggly Fri 07-Jun-19 17:17:05

says there is limited evidence of additional nutritional benefit beyond the age of two

Limited evidence sounds like they haven’t actually conducted any studies - not the same as saying there is no evidence.

Breastfeeding can continue with longer breaks with toddlers. I know, I’ve had nights away and it’s been fine.

The little one will settle fine without his mother there because he knows the grandparents won’t offer boob!

Sometimes mothers can hold their partners at arms length, using the excuse of having to nurture their child, when the reality is that they just don’t want to spend that time away...... I know, I’ve done it myself.

Strokethefurrywall Fri 07-Jun-19 17:17:33

In particular if he has read WHO and NHS guidelines?

Pfft, how many mothers read the WHO or NHS guidelines?? Let's not diss the husband for not doing something that most others don't do either (including mothers).
I bloody didn't and I nursed both my kids.
But I also used my own judgment and common bloody sense and didn't need WHO or NHS to dictate my aims.

The point here is that all OPs husband is doing is asking for some time away where they can be adults, a married couple. Without the distraction of a child who had to be fed to sleep and now apparently won't settle for anyone else.

How about you feed him to sleep at 7pm and then go out to a hotel after that? If you're making excuses why you absolutely can't leave your child with anyone else then think about those and don't use the breastfeeding as a get out clause.

It's perfectly fine not to want to leave your kid but your husband wants to spend time with YOU as a person because he misses YOU. If you are totally wrapped up in your child to the detriment of your marriage then you need to ask why.

Tinkety Fri 07-Jun-19 17:28:24

the child only needs such intense input for 3-5 years, what's 3-5 years out of a 50+ year marriage?

Yes but what usually happens is child number 2 & possibly even number 3 then comes along so 3-5 years potentially becomes 15 years straight of intense child centered input. Realistically what state is the marriage going to be in after 15 years if there is no balance?

I think OP’s post is the backstory that’s often missing from the threads we see from women who complain that their husbands don’t make an effort in their marriage. Sometimes women can focus so intently on their children in the early years that by the time they’re ready to resume working on their marriage, the husbands have checked out.

SunshineCake Fri 07-Jun-19 17:30:04

@happychange - how sad your child never has daddy putting him to bed.

Mummoomoocow Fri 07-Jun-19 17:31:44

My son is 17 months, I still bf and don’t intend to stop anytime soon

If my partner suggested a weekend away I’d be distressed about leaving him without a boob to fall asleep

However, your husband doesn’t feel that connection and he’s yearning for you to come back to him and to revisit what life was like before you had dc. He wants his partner for the night unlike his child’s mother

Could it be true that his communication is poor and he’s trying to tell you he wants things to return to normal because he misses you? Sadly you’ve already said you won’t “return” yet because your response showed your “only priority” is dc (for want of a better way to describe it)

Baby will fall asleep without distress in the care of someone else. Babies sleep in nurseries all the time while when at home with mum refuse to nap in any different circumstances. He will sleep because it’s not the same as you refusing him a boob one night when he knows that’s how it works. He will sleep because the other carer does not boob him so he will not have the expectation of getting one. He will however need more reassurance than ever before when he wakes up at night but he will also fall back to sleep because, as mentioned already, he expects to fall back to sleep but he does not expect his new carer to offer him a boob. He will resist falling asleep initially and quickly accept this change. So long as the carer is consistent in every other way (which might need you to have them present for one night to be physically shadowing how you do everything - from washing their hair to laying them down) and emotionally available to hear his sorrow at night he will be absolutely fine.

Babies need opportunities to emotionally develop and this can be a great one to realise mummy returns, other carers can emotionally support them and boobs aren’t a necessity but a gift from mummy.

Greggers2017 Fri 07-Jun-19 17:34:30

I really feel for some dads and partners in these relationships.
I'm due any day and already have decided to express and let Daddy feed her sometimes. He is also going to do the bedtime routine.
We have nights away booked in September and October because we need to be happy parents for the baby. Yes I will be a little babies Mum but my baby needs a happy Mum and dad and if you neglect each other then that is when relationships fall apart.

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 17:35:55

@vet breast feeding into second year and beyond is ideal.

From nhs website

As to your language. Ludicrous. Militant. Get a grip. Its not me who is using unpleasant language.

Limited evidence jst means there is not conclusive evidence. Very interesting studies being done on gut microbiome and immune system benefits. Also, benefits are greater than nutrition.

As to feminism. We jst had someone ask about OPs sex life. For real? This isnt misogynistic?

Actually im not militantly pro bf at all. I am happy I was able to. And i do think the evidencec stacks up in its favour. But it isnt the best in every situation. I have said this more than once.

All im trying to do is defend the OP. She clearly doesnt want to do this. In her place, I wouldnt have wanted it either. I think it is unreasonable of her husband to put her in a position to choose between the kind of mother she wants to be and the kind of wife he wants her to be. This seems misogynistic to me.

LagunaBubbles Fri 07-Jun-19 17:41:36

You couldnt bear to do the thing that most developmental pschys will tell you forms secure attachment?

Well funny enough you don't even need to breastfeed at all to firm secure attachments to your children, I've got 3 and never breastfed once and they've all turned out fine. hmm

Loopytiles Fri 07-Jun-19 17:47:28

YANBU to breastfeed, but IME it’s not good to be feeding DC of that age to sleep, or if no one else can settle DC. With DC1 I found this bad for my health and wellbeing, and my relationship with DH (who was supportive of BFeeding but found it hard to settle DC and I was exhausted and unwell)

I fed DC2 to age 2.5, but with help from DH night weaned at 14 months or so, Dr Jay Gordon method, 3 nights of hell then no feeding in the night. From then onward had overnight trips away with work.

If your H is otherwise reasonable, would listen to his concerns.

Loopytiles Fri 07-Jun-19 17:48:44

If Ds won’t settle for anyone else, that’s something you and DH could work on well before going away.

AmICrazyorWhat2 Fri 07-Jun-19 17:54:21

*I think it is unreasonable of her husband to put her in a position to choose between the kind of mother she wants to be and the kind of wife he wants her to be.

So are you saying that the father's opinion regarding her "mothering" decisions doesn't matter? If she was an anti-vaxxer and he was concerned about it, that wouldn't matter either, because she's the all-knowing mother?

You seem to be saying that father's opinions aren't as valid as mothers when it comes to parenting and that's a dangerous road to go down for most couples. I agree that he's being a drama queen about "having a night away" but he's allowed to express an opinion about bf and also about their relationship.

I never had to discuss this with DH as both my DC self-weaned around 10-11 months, crawling, walking and creating havoc were far more interesting. grin

SoHotADragonRetired Fri 07-Jun-19 17:57:15

You might want to avoid confident statements about how you will parent and how you will balance partner and children before your first child even arrives, Greggers, unless you want to be doing a full-body cringe in a few years' time.

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