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Help to Stop Breastfeeding

(8 Posts)
ForeverBubblegum Mon 30-Jul-18 21:16:10

DS is 20 months old and our breastfeeding journey has come to the end of the road. I just want to be able to cuddle him without my top been pulled down, or a tantrum If I say no. Over the last few months he’s increased his him milk intake from mainly just bed/nap time to near constant. So much that some days he’s barely eating solids anymore, which can’t be good for him. He’s also very rough with his grabbing and wriggly whilst latched on which is getting painful.

I have decided to go cold turkey. I know it’s not really recommended but I tried to cut down gradually and DS was just getting frustrated because he didn’t understand why he could have it sometimes but not others so it just felt like we were prolonging the upset.

We’re 24 hours in; the day was alright but last night and so far tonight has been hard. He’s use to been feed to sleep, so it is a big adjustment for him (although he sleeps for childminder and will go down for DH sometimes). So far I’ve tried a combination of sending in DH, lying with him, cuddling, singing quietly, offering cow’s milk, and swaying whilst holding him (effective but difficult at his size). Most have been met with screaming. He does eventually sleep but after 30min-hour our on and off crying, which I’m really struggling with. I don’t want to give in because that will just confuse him further, and all the upset he’s been through so far will be wasted. But it’s really hard.

Sorry this reads more like a moan then a question, and to a large extent it is. Just wanted to see if anyone had been through this and might be able to give an idea of how long this is likely to go on before he accepts it. Also any other pointer would be most welcome.

Thank you for listening to me ramble.

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Chalady Mon 30-Jul-18 21:21:38

This might sound stupid, but have you told him?

I think I would make a point of saying "All gone" if he tries, then distract him!

MadeForThis Mon 30-Jul-18 21:32:22

I weaned dd at 22 months. I'd had enough and was 18 weeks pregnant. Did nights first. Fed to sleep and then none until sun was up.

Told her that the milk didn't work at night any more. Wore high necked tops.

She woke up about 3 times each night. Bit upset and majorly angry. We co slept. Hit me. Shouted. Tried to bite. Only thing that worked was distraction. I talked about why we did that day. What we would do tomorrow. Could she hear the dog barking outside? She would start talking about that and calm down. After 30 mins or so she would lie down and go back to sleep.

This lasted for 2 weeks. Same every night. Maybe slightly less wake ups. Didn't give in at all.

After 2 weeks I stopped Day time feeds. Fed her to sleep for her nap and then when she woke I told her milk was all gone. She could have a biscuit instead. She asked a few times and then no more. It was a miracle. Would never have believed it would have stopped that easily.

Even when I started bf dd2 she wasn't interested. Asked once if she could have some. I told her she was a big girl and could have ice cream and biscuits and more. Baby could only have milk. Conversation over. Not interested again.

Good luck. It is hard on both of you. But they do understand.

TresDesolee Mon 30-Jul-18 21:38:40

I went cold turkey with DS when he was about 18 months (was also about 6m pregnant and milk had pretty much dried up, so it was really sore). In retrospect I wish i hadn’t cold turkeyed to be honest - it was pretty grim for about a week or so and none of us got any sleep. I think maybe stopping either night or day feeds first, as PP did, would have been kinder.

DS was madly, deeply upset though, especially at night (he fed to sleep and throughout the night) so that colours my view of it a bit.

Whatever you do, you will get there - good luck. It’s not a fun time but you’ll get through it. (And it is nice when they stop pulling your top up 😀)

ForeverBubblegum Mon 30-Jul-18 21:53:32

Chalady - I've told him "boobie all gone" which he seemed to understand, and he said "Oh dear, mummy broken" and gave me a hug. But then when he's tiered he forgets and gets to upset to listen.

I'm slightly encouraged to hear that it's it's only been a week or two for people, so I could be 1/7th of the way there.

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EthelBeavers Mon 30-Jul-18 21:54:43

I was exactly at the same point as you at 20m and was desperate to stop. I'd gotten him down to the getting to sleep feed and one in the night but couldn't seem to get shot of those.

This might not work for you if he's still day feeding but I just arranged a few nights where he was in the car around 7pm as it sent him to sleep. Then I'd take a bottle of cow's milk up to bed so it'd be room temp when he woke up. Then, and this is terrible but it bloody worked, for when he wouldn't go back down with the bottle, I'd give him a snack, like one of those baby bars. He'd lie quietly and eat it and fall back to sleep. No boob required. It was just a few nights of this and it seemed to stick pretty quickly. I'd say it took a fortnight to get him off midnight eating completely and falling asleep in a bed with just cuddles but I think the key was breaking the association with the car drives/evening pram pushing.

There's so much information about how to start breastfeeding but there's bugger all out there on how to stop. It'll happen for you though, just take all the support you can get and go with your gut on what works for your DS. flowers

MadeForThis Mon 30-Jul-18 23:13:13

Be proud that you have breastfed for so long. My dd was a constant feeder. Day and night. I knew the nights would be hardest that's why I started there. But because I still fed her to sleep she still had some comfort each night.
She was definitely more angry than sad. Which made it easer to resist giving in. After a week or so I think she just accepted that boobies didn't work at night any more.

Once that had sunk in I totally stopped all feeds. She just accepted it. I'm still a little bit shocked how easy it was a year later.

ForeverBubblegum Tue 31-Jul-18 11:29:50

Well that was surprisingly easy.

After been up an hysteric twice between 7-9 last night, we unexpectedly turned a corner. DS slept for about 5 hours and then was fine. Still refused DH and shouted for me, but when I went through (expecting him to kick off when he didn't get boob) he just asked for cuddles.

Had a bit of milk from bottle and fidgeted a bit but went to sleep within 20 minutes without any crying. Work up at 5 and was similar, I lay with him for a bit but then he started asking for ham and cheese so we got up for early breakfast. I'm hoping I can convince him to have a bigger tea tonight so we're not up so early, but overall I really can't complain.

Long may it continuegrin

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