Breastfeeding toddler(15 Posts)
Ok I really need some help with how to stop breastfeeding. My ds is almost 20 months old and still breastfeeding. He wants to breastfeed all the time when he is with me which is all the time apart from during my working hours. My husband works away and therefore I have no one to take over and distract ds when he wants to breastfeed. He is not doing it out of hunger, he is a good eater and eats 3 meals a day with snack in between. It’s completely for comfort. He does not have dummy or any other sort of comforter. He wakes constantly through the night, he hasn’t slept through once since he was born. It’s got to the point that I regret breastfeeding in the first place and wish I had just bottle fed. Really need advice, have tried health visitor and they say they don’t recommend stopping until child decides but I’ve had enough now. Think after 20 months of breastfeed I’ve done well and should be allowed to stop!!
Similar boat - doing it gradually...
Have stopped in the day by being very busy for a few weeks as I find its at home that its very difficult to say no but when out its asked for less and he can be distracted with other drinks and food.
At the stage now where even at home he can ask for milk but understands he will get milk from the fridge in a cup.
Going to give it a couple of weeks settling time and then going to do middle of the night. Then last I will do bedtime/evening milk...
Good luck x
Thanks for your quick response. Will try and follow your plan of attack... seems like you’re well on your way to stopping! X
I start with night weaning. One last feed before bed and then explain milk is going to bed for the night, he can have some I. The morning. The first few nights might be rough but will massively improve his sleep.
Once that is in place, I’d use more distraction through the day and eventually say just for bedtime/morning.
You may feel able to keep a morning and night feed for a while once you are not constantly feeding!
Once you are ready you can then stop. A gradual process is much easier on both of you.
www.emmapickettbreastfeedingsupport.com/twitter-and-blog/weaning-toddler-bob-and-pre-schooler-billie-how-do-you-stop-breastfeeding-an-older-child this is a really good piece about weaning toddlers.
I found Never Sit Down was also a key part
It does get really hard after 1 especially if you're Mummy dummy. Honestly trying to be helpful not smug, but I structured feeds after mine were weaned - at specific times for specific things, e.g. after breakfast, before nap (there were two naps a day until they were about 1) and bedtime and gradually phased them out through the day using a bottle instead if they still needed a sucky milk drink, but just regular drinks if not. You could maybe try an accelerated version of this, but if you're determined not to use bottles at all, I'm not sure how well it would work.By one, I wasn't having to feed in the morning, by 18/20 months I was only doing the bedtime feed. However, I was quite happy to go on until at least two and the bedtime one was a real PiTA after we dropped it with my second, took a while to get a good routine. If you're not going to be brutal, expect to have a made a rod for yourself in some way. She was still asking for BFs when she was nearly 3, which tugged at the heart strings. I had a very busy 4 days where it was difficult to get back to feed her and that's how I got it to finally stop. I've known others go away - is that an option?
The longer you go on after one, the harder it is IME and I also have several friends who went on until nearly 3, one who went on until after 3 (all by choice, though). The friends who went on until nearly three tended to have kids who were co-sleeping and were being used for comfort through the night, which was particularly wearing, but by nearly 3 they could have a conversation about stopping, especially if there was another baby coming. Some were tougher with the second child , but the woman whose DD was still feeding after three didn't want to push her second and last baby.
I was in this situation with my now 4 year old ds, he was 3 when he finally weaned off! ( he was only feeding at bedtime by then though) and he only stopped really because my dd was born. Looking back I wish I'd more actively encouraged him to wean off around age 2, and I will do with dd. I would just divert attention to something else when a feed is usually due, a trip out to the park, a treat, play a game, anything really, but for your sake and theirs I would only cut one feed per week. The bedtime feed will likely be the last to go.
My dd is 9 months old and I have just bought some formula just to see if I can slowly get her to drink any other milk but only really to free me up little in case I ever need to nip away for a few hours, dh could easily feed her.
We did Night weaning with DD2 at 24 months. That made all the difference. Nursies when the sun shines is a good picture book.
I agree with pp. Never Sit Down during the day! 🤣
Tinseltown... thanks that also sounds like good advice, what did you do when dc woke during night and you weren’t feeding them? Rock to soothe? When my husband is home and ds wakes, my husband will go through to him and he lies down immediately when he sees it’s his daddy because he knows no milk there, whereas when it’s me he just goes ballistic
Myyoni thsnks... will have a read!
Allthatmalarkey... ds would never take bottle...tried introducing bottle from about 3 days old and tried every night for months, he would scream so much he would fall asleep from the exhaustion of it all, would never take a bottle. I was never opposed to a bottle, he just preferred boob 😂
Completely agree with you about making rod for my own back, first child and told to feed on demand by HV and just did ad I was told... now realise I should have been looking at bigger picture for my own sake too. Going away to a wedding for 2 nights in August so I suppose that could be something to aim for... try and cut down until then and if I’m still not having success then that could be final line sort of thing.
Thanks bobstersmum... been trying the distraction tactics and will keep doing so. Good luck with the formula too... could not get my ds to take it from bottle or cup!!
Stargirl thank you, going to order that book!!
Following as my 13 month old seems more boob obsessed than ever. I’m happy to continue BF her for a bit longer but not 5 times a day and every couple of hours overnight!
In the night I gently repeated that milk had gone to sleep and you can have some more in the morning. I offered sugar free squash (I know not great) or water if they were thirsty. I cuddled them with their back to me, so not in a feeding position.
To be honest if he goes to bed well for your husband he’ll get it pretty quickly. You might get a tantrum but as long as you are kind and soothing it’ll pass.
If it helps, getting your DP to replace you for 3 or 4 days (don't laugh - I hope this is feasible) seemed to be the easiest way for me and my friends in this situation. You don't have to be away, but having dad be you, especially for the night stuff, can work quite quickly for breaking the habit.
I weaned my daughter when she turned 2. We had to go cold turkey due to medication. I told her it was all gone, she cried one night and one morning and was then fine.
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