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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!

GummyGoddess Sat 08-Jun-19 19:36:04

I'm so glad you've worked things out, I hope it all goes smoothly for you both.

DtPeabodysLoosePants Sat 08-Jun-19 13:09:17

YADNBU! Still feeding ds who is 4 at bedtime. He can do without me now but at 2 was still very dependent on me.

I remember my ex (DD's dad) and I discussing how I'd fed me dd until 3.5 and he'd commented "he'd want my breasts back at 6 months" WTAF? One of the many reasons he's an ex.

Your breastfeeding relationship is yours and your child's and is no one else's business. If your DH is feeling jealous then he needs to address that.

newnewname19 Sat 08-Jun-19 11:24:40

Wow that is a lot of responses- thank you!

To the poster who asked, yes I am the poster who got married a few weeks ago. We have been together for 3 years, and very good friends for 8 prior to that.

No, the house isn't covered in baby things- well, to a normal standard but baby is in his cot in his own room, toys kept in his nursery, nappies and wipes kept away- it's not 'baby baby baby' as someone put it.

I think people are right when they say it's about striking a balance- me and DH have spoken since I started this thread. The issue isn't breastfeeding really, it's the night time routine as lots of poster have said. DH is going to do the majority, I'll do bath time and getting ready for bed, and then DH is going to do books and bed, and hopefully try to settle DS in the night if he wakes.

This is my DPs first grandchild, they were worried about having him overnight in case he got upset or they wouldn't be able to settle him. We have since mused the idea with DHs parents (7 grandchildren!) and they said they would happily look after our DS overnight. They live quite close to London, so I think we will have a night night out and hotel in London soon, and if he won't settle it's easy to get back to him, and if it does work then next time we can go a bit further!

Thank you for all the advice and debates- I really appreciate it

Hello1231 Sat 08-Jun-19 10:51:28

It should ultimately be your choice as its your body, but I don't think he is being unreasonable to have an opinion on it; it is his child and his relationship too. if you aren't ready to go away overnight, could you compromise and find some daytime things you would both enjoy doing?

Wellthatwastricky Sat 08-Jun-19 10:46:33

I don't think weekends away are even slightly necessary (I don't think it's a class thing BTW, more like who has hands on GPs who'd gladly take the kids and the spare cash to do it) but, I do think it's true that even the strongest relationship can be tested by the arrival of a baby.

It changes everything, it can put pressure on both partners - physically, emotionally, psychologically. Money and time might be shorter than ever. The sheer exhaustion can make minor issues seem overwhelming, people snap and get less kind or patient and it can happen to the strongest couples. Both parents need to invest time in nurturing the whole family and that includes the adult relationship, precisely so it stays strong. It's not a sign of weakness. It's not just about sex or time alone or whatever, it can be about affection, communication, planning for the future, having fun.

So OP, any thoughts on peoples replies?

Lweji Sat 08-Jun-19 09:33:41

A lot do women do this and this is why relationships fail.

I'm pretty sure it isn't. The relationship just wouldn't have been strong enough.

Lweji Sat 08-Jun-19 09:31:21

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?

Because it's irrelevant.

The point would be to reassure the grandparents, should the OP and her DH want to go away for a night or two.

How the baby reacts at home or in another place and with different people can be different. It might even turn out that the grandparents don't want to babysit and bf is just an excuse. grin

Which is not to say that the father shouldn't try to / get to put baby to sleep as well, but for separate reasons and with different objectives.

squee123 Sat 08-Jun-19 09:07:35

To address your parent's concerns and put your mind at rest before you go how about you stay away for one night and leave your DH to get him down without the breast? That way if it's a complete disaster you can go home early and if it works you can all be more comfortable with a weekend away and your husband can talk your parents through how to settle him

MrsxRocky Sat 08-Jun-19 09:07:29

A lot do women do this and this is why relationships fail.
Yes being a mum is massively important but putting effort into your relationship is also very important.
You are both parents so should both have a say in how child is raised.
If he is low weight and I'd say he needs to eat more solids, maybe he's taking in too much milk and not enough real food.
If my husband started putting his daughter above me and basically making me feel like I was completely unimportant I'd be like right on your bike then.
Not one person is more important than the other. Every person in family should be loved and given time too.

Booboo66 Sat 08-Jun-19 08:58:02

Have you always been the one to put him to sleep? Has he never fallen asleep without you there? I'm sure he'd be fine. He'd wake up, realise you weren't there and use the other forms of comfort offered to him instead.

It's obviously to do with DH and he's entitled to an opinion, but ultimately the decision is entirely yours. There's definitely no need to stop feeding solely to facilitate the odd night away. You can definitely do both

timeisnotaline Sat 08-Jun-19 08:24:25

I’m a big breastfeeding fan (& hate expressing) but it is very important to me that my husband be able to settle baby. Actually he was better at settling baby (a terrible sleeper) with our second than I was. And thank christ as this meant that when I was a bit run down while baby was 7-9 months and got ill a few times he could do it. At the stage you are at you could easily go away for a night and continue bf seamlessly on your return, so settling baby is the important bit and your dh should start trying. I don’t see how a marriage works if dhs opinion seems irrelevant (when it’s a perfectly normal opinion like I’d like to go out with my wife)

As far as I am aware for first world babies the bf benefits are mainly when quite young and there are no studies which show a statistically significant difference between adults.

Alltheprettyseahorses Sat 08-Jun-19 08:10:19

*for clarification, I was wondering if going away without your children is middle-class.

Alltheprettyseahorses Sat 08-Jun-19 08:09:03

Do you actually want a night away from your child, OP?

Disclaimer - I don't know anyone who's gone away without their kids (dunno if it's a middle-class thing) so my frame of reference is holidays only being for families as the default.

BeardyButton Sat 08-Jun-19 08:05:47

@Vet I have looked over the thread. When I have been at my most strident, it was in defence of bf against people who were either making inaccurate cliams about it or implying that extended bf is somehow icky. This is something mothers bfing older children often encounter.

Whenever it came to the personal decision to bottle feed, I dont think I was anything but supportive.

As to luck. No! I think raising a great kid is a product of genes and environment. I read a really interesting study recently on gene plastcity. How certain genes can turn on and off over a lifecourse correlating to environmental factors. Id link it, but I dont think people would like that wink. So I think its highly likely that good parenting was involved, not just luck. In fact, deciding to bottle feed may have been a really good parenting choice here. My point was, when larger populations are studied, extended bf is correlated with a lot of positive outcomes. One of them secure attachment. Anecdotal evidence about the outcome of one parenting decision does not detract from this.

The thing is the OP asked if she was unreasonable. I want her to know she isnt. She is doing a great job. Some posters judged her, often based on factually incorrect ideas about bf. I saw my contributions as trying to support OP, who has since disappeared. I dont blame her. The judgment of her here has not been nice to witness.

If you think Ive gone too far in support of OP at cost of other vulnerable posters, i disagree w you. But why not report my messages. Im fairly new to posting, but i think thats how it works. Im not a moderator, but nor are you. You dont get to police my contributions. But if they really arent in the spirit of mumsnet, then report. My messages should then disappear, and Ill know I have gone too far. It will be a good learning opp for me, as genuinely all i wanted to do was support OP.

And i wont reply to this anymore, unless what i have said continues to be misrepresented. Thats the best i can do, i think.

llamallamallamallamachameleon Sat 08-Jun-19 07:55:03

I don't think it has to be either or though. You can breastfeed and still have a night off, your LO will adapt and your milk supply won't change. I'm in the same position (still bf) and there's been times recently where I've been out and DH has put (usually bf to sleep) toddler down with no problems. I think they're more adaptable than we are sometimes smile

Also I may be wrong but I'm fairly sure that nutritionally there's not a huge amount they get from breastmilk after a year. And that from 6 months as their vit store they were born with starts to dwindle, if you're bf it's even more important that they have vitamins and start eating a variety of food because they don't get enough from bm (I've been on courses with dieticians about this). Food for fun before one can be a bit misleading. Calorie wise most of their input comes from food, especially after 12 months. So I think your nutrition argument probably is a bit shaky. Whereas from a bonding/pain relief/comfort point of view I'm totally in agreement, do it as long as you and baby both want to smile

nutbrownhare15 Fri 07-Jun-19 23:10:01

You don't need to stop bf to have a night or 2 away. My parents have been able to put my DD to bed since around 18 months. I had first night away when she was just over 2. No need to express. I also think your DH should be sharing bedtime duty- we did 50-50 from about 18 months and I continue to breastfeed. I'm sorry that your DH is bring unsupportive re breastfeeding. It shouldn't stop you from having a night away if you wish at this age, although I don't think I was ready til my daughter was 2. Have a read of this too

dustarr73 Fri 07-Jun-19 22:48:19

@BeardyButton I loved bf.But i loved time away as an adult just as much.You can have both.

And to be fair you are not talking about a newborn.So other people should be able to get the child to sleep.

Hmmmbop Fri 07-Jun-19 22:28:07

Breastfeeding and weekends away are not mutually exclusive. I breastfed until 27months and had 2 nights away from DS around 18 months and 2. He was fine. He normally fed to sleep, every morning and when I got home from work.

I suspect it's that you don't want to leave him, which is perfectly reasonable, but say that. Don't make it about the breastfeeding.

And finally, your husband is saying you need to put more energy in to your relationship as a couple. It doesn't need to be a weekend away, but you do need to listen to that.

Veterinari Fri 07-Jun-19 22:21:39


I certainly have not jumped on people because they choose not to bf.
You mean like this:
*@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 this - where you compare not breastfeeding to smoking, and imply that the poster was lucky her kids turned out great hmm
*@laguna not breastfeeding may have been the right decision for you. And im really glad your kids turned out great. But anecdotal evidence like this doesnt prove anything. Its akin to saying 'I smoked all my life, Im 90 and fit and healthy, therefore smoking cant be bad'*

Look over the thread - other posters have told you directly that you’ve made them feel like crap. You’ve offended, belittled and insulted, and yet you seem to think i’m the uncivil one. I’m going back to stopping commenting because it’s impossible to reason with an unreasonable person and if you genuinely cannot see that you’ve been unkind and judgemental, even when it’s pointed out to you, then I can’t help you with that. It’s probably easier for you just to continue believing that you’re right in your unkindness and the rest of us are just unreasonable.
Though I think it’s sad that you are so oblivious to the misery and discomfort you’ve caused other mums out there, and so unwilling to consider (several) other points of view, at least you can sleep well knowing that you’re ‘right’. Good for you.

SassyBadger Fri 07-Jun-19 22:15:55

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

How is it misogynistic? It seems a reasonable enough question to ask seeing as the context of this thread is as much about her romantic relationship as it is about her relationship with their child. Of course, the OP does need to answer if she'd rather not discuss.

cupofteaandcake Fri 07-Jun-19 22:06:09

OP did you have weekends away fairly regularly pre-DC or is this something new? Has your DH actively involved himself in family life and the new DC?

I only ask as often there seems to be a bit of an issue with husbands/partners feeling they are 'left out' and rather than immersing themselves in family life they act like a child that has been neglected and not getting enough attention. Please don't tear yourself between pleasing 2 children, your young DC needs your attention.

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 21:43:58

The poster jst above mine is jst one example of why I talked about the benefits of extended bf....

BeardyButton Fri 07-Jun-19 21:42:37

@Vet your last post was more civil. Thanks. My goal is certainly not to make mothers who chose not to or could nt bf to feel bad. My goal is to support op. Many on this thread have said she is not reasonable. Some, becuase bf is not beneficial past a certain age (1?). Thats not true. One poster in fact said formula would be a better option for her if she wanted her child to gain weight.

As I ve said at length I m pro bottle, if its the choice of the mother. What I m not pro is telling OP she is unreasonable. Shes not in my view.

I certainly have not jumped on people because they choose not to bf. I ve been at pains to say over and over... I respect that choice. What i have jumped on is what i have seen as disrespect of OPs (reasonable) choices.

I didnt liken parenting choices to smoking. I tried to use a clarificatory example to show how anecdotal evidence is not meaningful.

It seems you wish to misunderstand me. Thats ok with me. But I must say, I dont enjoy you putting words in my mouth. Words that I havent, nor would ever, say.

You also dont get to tell me to 'step back'. If you refer to me as lacking kindness, and attempt to mischaracterise what I have said, then of course I m going to want to reply. I appreciate your commitment to kindness. I share it. Which is why I have tried to show how much I respect the choice to bottle feed. Yet OP has not made this decision. Telling her she should give up, that there are no benefits in extended bf is, in my opinion, not right. Telling her she should go away for a night, when she doesnt want to, is again, in my opinion, not reasonable. And the stuff about her marriage... And meeting her adult husbands needs. In my opinion, completely unreasonable. And the comments abour her sex life... Beyond unreasonable.

Booboosweet Fri 07-Jun-19 21:29:30

Surely your child is weaned now anyway, so milk doesn't need to be a big part of the diet. If it's just a comfort thing, that's easy to stop. I can understand why your DH is frustrated.

AmICrazyorWhat2 Fri 07-Jun-19 21:15:07

I'm sure the OP and her DH will work this out amicably but I don't like the advice to "not listen to your DH." Parenting is a partnership and one partner isn't more equal than the other. There'll be countless decisions to be made re. their DS over the years and you won't always agree.

Unless what they're suggesting is dangerous/illegal, etc., don't shoot them down because you disagree. Hear them out and discuss it. Otherwise, there'll be arguments galore, especially when it comes to the teen years!

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