When did you give up Breastfeeding, and why?(57 Posts)
I've been breastfeeding my daughter for 6 months - 4 months exclusively, and introduced a bedtime bottle as part of her routine from 4 months on. If you had asked me before she came along how long I'd like to feed for, I would have said 6 months, but I don't feel quite ready to give up (though part of me would like to, mainly for selfish reasons!) Will be going back to work in August when baby is coming up to 10 months, so will probably keep at it until then, in combination with BLW. It's so convenient in many ways, and i'm enjoying the cuddles which are happening less and less these days! Also can't really face washing bottles, the one-per-night is enough as it is, goddamn Dr. Browns bottles and their little parts :/
Just wondering really how long you breastfed for, and what your reasons were for giving up?
We bfed until 9 months (I was aiming for 12 months). Bfeeds gradually turned to ffeeds for a few reasons. At around 6 months ds became impossible to feed in public...always bobbing on and off and noseying around so I started taking a bottle out instead.
Soon after, bedtime turned into a farce with ds nursing on and off for up to 3 hours and still not falling asleep (and he was furious about it) so DP gallantly took over the routine while I
hid put the DDs to bed, so the bedtime feed became a ff.
Night feeds soon turned to ff as well when I realised that ds slept for longer after DP gave him a bottle than after I'd bf him , then he was usually full up come morning time after ff 2/3 times during the night so he no longer wanted his morning feed.
That was quite cathartic
Stopped at 19 or 20mo. But DD was a great sleeper so BF was never an issue. I just decided it was enough and swapped the bedtime feed with a story. She didn't complain at all.
DS was 8 months, I was mixed feeding and he took to solid food very quickly so I think he found the boob unsatisfactory after the formula and real food! He just stopped wanting it.
DD was 9 months.. it was a mutual and natural end I felt. She was down to just nightime feed, DH and I went away for the weekend and she was very contented without me and boob! Went onto bottle and formula and we didn't look back.
I am going to sound like a total control freak amongst the people who planned a short period of time and ended up feeding for years rather than months...but with both DS1 and DS2, I planned to feed for six months and then start moving to bottle feeds, which is what I did. I dropped feeds gradually over a month and by seven months they were exclusively formula fed. Plan to do the same with DS3 who is currently 8 weeks. Will wait to see how I feel nearer the time, but the 6/7 month thing felt completely right with both of my older two and the transition was very smooth and easy. They had both had daily bottles of EBM and, later, formula from an early age, so this probably helped. But 7 months was definitely about right for us.
Stopped at 18 months with DD, she made the decision herself. It was quite sudden but I was early pregnant with DS so possibly my milk tasted funny! After a few weeks I was quite relieved as didn't want to tandem feed as only one breast works and thought that would get a bit complicated trying to feed 2 from one breast!
Still breastfeeding DS now who is 1 year next week. I've started back at work this week (just 2 days) and feeding is fitting round it ok.
I didn't have any particular time to stop BF my DC as I was just going to see how it went.
With DS, I had to give up at around 4.5m (give or take a few weeks) as my nipples were excruciatingly painful while i BF. I didn't have the pain at any other time and initially I thought I had sensitive nipples, but when I pinched my nipples hard, I realised that it wasn't sensitive nipples.
When I had DD I thought it might be different, but it was the same and, again, I had to give up as it got to the point where I was dreading BF so much that I was seriously thinking of throwing myself under a train to escape the BF.
I couldn't have more DC without trying to BF at the least, and I didn't want to BF ever again, so I got sterilised.
In hospital I had DS and DD's latch, feeding position checked and so on, and everything was fine. The BFC didn't know what was wrong as I had no mastitis, no other infections or problems related to the breasts. Like I say, eerything was grand and there were no problems.
Thanks all for your interesting replies - food for thought (no pun intended, lol!)
I haven't tried her with another type of bottle lately but that's a good idea. Will stick with the bf for now anyway as it's working well for us both. I'm not sure I'd be cut out for extended feeding, but will keep an open mind! I do really enjoy the morning feed so wouldn't mind even keeping that after I go back to work
DS was 14 months and I was just feeding at bedtime by then. We did some sleep training and that sort of coincided with stopping feeding as he was still waking in the night for me and I wanted it to stop.
Dd1 aged about 3. Demand fed until a little over 2 but needed a period to conceive. Gave up two months into tandeming. She said ' it's for my sister'
Dd2 demand fed co sleeper still at 22 months. She can feed 5-20 times I a 24 hr period
Still going with DS1 at 2yrs 4 months though thinking of stopping soon (I have been saying that for the past 5 months though!).
DD - 9 months - gave up because she had reflux and I was fed up with being sicked up all over whilst feeding her. Felt it was DH's turn for a bit!
DS1 - 14 months - gave up because he started to talk and I felt a bit funny about him asking for some booby milk.
DS2 - 20 months - I was aiming for 2 years but he was a biter. He drew blood once too often so called it a day sadly.
Ended up letting DS self wean because I didn't see a need to wean. Just cut down feeding gradually, as he got older and more able to deal with things without it it was easier to say no if I didn't feel in the right kind of frame of mind or it wasn't convenient and he eventually stopped all by himself.
"Just wondering really how long you breastfed for, and what your reasons were for giving up? "
Have been doing it non-stop for 5yrs, tandem feeding for 2.
Would like to give up soon. DC1 seems to be reducing feeds to once a day so maybe she'll be off by 6.
I bfed ds yuntil he was about 10 months old, he wasn't that much interested then, and I was also ready to stop.
I bfed dd until she was 7 months, I had to take antibiotics and other drugs for an abscess and I was told I couldn't breastfeed while taking them. I was in too much pain to think about anything else, honestly.
You don't need to express at work to keep feeding, necessarily. I always thought you did, but when I went back to work at 14months, my body adjusted and we continued feeding morning and bedtimes.
FWIW our society is very anti-breastfeeding. There's a lot of pressure on mums to give up IME. DS was a big baby and people kept asking when I was going to give up, I found the questions increased when he was about 10 months or so.
I had no idea when I was going to give up BFing, I didn't give it any thought when pregnant, I guess I thought maybe a year? But it just felt like the most natural thing in the world, and I was very grateful that I could still BF DS when he was ill and refusing any food or liquids. And DS has never showed any signs of wanting to give up. So we just carried on. DS is 4.3 now!
He still feeds now on those nights I put him to bed (he's quite happy to be put to bed by DP too though) and most mornings he comes and gets into bed with us and feeds then too. I was feeling recently that I really should put a stop to it soon as I know no one else who feeds such an old DC. But then someone asked a question very similar to this on mumsnet the other day, and there were load of people feeding DCs who were 4+, which gave me a confidence boost and helped me reassess - if he's happy about it, I'm happy about it, and I know it does him good, then there's no reason to stop just yet!
I'm actually surprised how long the average is - given how poor the breastfeeding statistics here in Ireland are. It seems quite common to feed until 2 or later, whereas that's nearly unheard of here.
My mother in law (who breastfed her own two btw) keeps dropping in comments about how 'disgusting it is to breastfeed a toddler' - my own daughter is only 6.5 months, and it's like she is urging me to give up before she gets 'too old'. FFS. Really annoys me tbh, none of her bloody business how long I decide to feed for.
Anyway, I digress
Thanks for the replies all!
5.5months. She NEVER latched on due to my flat nips but i used nipple guards. She had terrible colic so this didn't help. I expressed into a bottle and introduced formula when i had exhausted every avenue. I wish i knew how hard it could be. I feel really jibbed but proud i got as far as i did!
My sister breast fed DS1 for 4 years and DS2 is 18months and going strong- she could do it with her eyes closed standing on her head so i felt like a total failure- to the point i was ashamed to tell her i was giving DD a bottle... Now i know i was being rediculas!
17 months with DS. We were only doing one morning feed by then and I was getting a bit fed up (I can't quite remember why though now). At 10 months he hardly fed in the day at all so if I'd gone back to work then it would have been fine. I went back after a year and we were doing morning and evening feeds then so working had no impact (and it was lovely to bf after a day away from him). Personally I found bf very convenient after 6 months - would have been much more faff to have been using bottles. He gradually had less bf and more solids, and I didn't really notice the change so didn't have to think too hard about it. We did have a couple of episodes of biting post 6 months when he had teeth, but he learnt not to do it very quickly so it didn't become a problem (so many people were aghast at me feeding a baby with teeth!).
DD is 6 weeks old and I'll BF her for as long as we both feel happy to.
Still feeding here at 20 months.
Always had 12 months in mind which came and went and now I have no intention of stopping until DD weans herself. I look back pre-dd and must admit that I thought the idea of feeding beyond 12 months 'weird' and "for the mums benefit" . It isn't weird and it definitely isn't for my benefit.
She loves breastfeeding and took to it quite well from day 1 despite 100% tongue tie. My milk in bottle or beaker was continually refused!
She 'reconnects' during the day when she's been busy playing on her own, or hasn't seen me for a little while; it is only her morning one that is the main one now, she has even cut out her bedtime and late night one in the last 8 weeks on her own (she doesn't have cows milk replacement).
I now use "don't offer, don't refuse" with her and that works for us.
At 6 months OP there is no reason at all why you can't continue to mix feed. Several of my friends did/do this and have lovely bedtime and morning breast feeds, and formula (or expressed) during the day when at work post 6 and 12 months old.
I also had 12 months in mind with DS, but ended up having to stop at 16 months so that I could start on the IVF drugs again. Think I would definitely have gone to 2yrs otherwise.
Am now pregnant again and all things being equal will BF DC2 for as long as it suits us both....
As eskina said there are differences in a family as none of my 4 have been same.
Dd1 2 weeks ebf then ff I just couldn't get the hang of feeding and felt like a failure. As abbyfromoz said about her sister being a bf whiz my sister was the same & this made me feel even worse.
Dd2 was mix fed for about a month I was very ill after she was born as had pph and blood transfusion so feeding never established properly
Dd3 bf until about 4,5 months and stopped due to her being hospitalised and tube fed with bronchiolitis and milk supply dwindled and she wouldn't feed after that
Ds until almost 8 months when we both lost interest and my chest was covered in bruises from him pinching me! Made it past his hospital stay and intubation at 2 weeks though and was proud of what we achieved.
Still going at 14 months and beginning to ask similar questions to you. I think I'll carry on as long as DD wants to. It does become even easier as they get a little older. DD can go all day without if I'm working or we@re out or feeds several times when she@s under the weather or I'm off work. We both just adjust. Dropping night feeds would be good and I'm not sure how I'll feel when she's not a 'baby' anymore and comes asking for it but for now I'm happy to BF as long as she wants it.
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