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Has my milk gone for good? (extended bf question)

(5 Posts)
LiegeAndLief Sun 11-Sep-11 21:06:08

Dd is 2.2 and still feeding when she asks for it, usually every other day. She asked this morning after not feeding for about a week - she had asked a couple of times but she usually feeds when she wakes up and we were rushing to get ds to school, so I had to say no. This morning she latched on for about 5min, then looked up at me in disgust and announced there was no milk. Tried the other side - still no milk.

Whilst this isn't the end of the world, I'm a bit sad that it might be finished if she wants to carry on. If I continue to let her feed when she asks (if she asks again after this morning! she was not very pleased) will the milk come back again, or did we just leave it too long?

azazello Sun 11-Sep-11 21:33:45

I haven't been feeding quite as long as you, but DS went on strike for 3 days when he had a cold at 19 months and I spoke to the NCT. The nice counseller was absolutely certain that if I wanted to, I could not feed for 1-2 years and still be able to start up again in a couple of weeks. I've also read about families in Africa where the mother has died and the grandmother has been able to bf so I should think you could always start up again if you want to.

In my case, just as I'd resigned myself to stopping and got oevr the first emotional bit, DS recovered and went back to being a total milk monster without any encouragement.

TheRealMBJ Sun 11-Sep-11 21:39:02

I'm pretty sure you'll easily 're-lactate' and that there actually is still milk there but that it will be rather more difficult for her to get to is at the moment. Most mums I've spoken to who have stopped feeding (at much younger that your DD - about 14-24 months) still have some milk present a few months after stopping feeding

LiegeAndLief Mon 12-Sep-11 20:04:32

Thanks very much for your encouraging answers! She had another feed today, not for very long, but seemed a bit uncertain when I asked her whether there was any milk and I think I heard a couple of swallows. So hopefully it will come back.

That's really amazing that someone could re-lactate years after stopping. Hope it's never something I have to worry about! grin

itsnotpossibleisit Mon 12-Sep-11 21:26:13

Hi LiegeAndLief,

To sum up DD went for 10 days without a beastfeed when she went on holiday with her dad (recently separated) and when she came back she latched on and I was very surprised there was still milk there. She is 2.2 years old. That happened in july and in august she went again for 9 days and we had the same situation. When she came back there was still plenty of milk there.

I have also been told by a GP friend of mine that once you have been breastfeeding for so long it can take up to a year for your body to stop producing milk. I really worried a lot the first time she went away but now I don't worry at all. Every weekend she spends a night at her dad's and it does not seem to have an effect on my milk supply

HTH

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