When did you stop breast feeding and why?

Just curious really as to what your thought processes were? I'm trying to think what would cause me to want to stop as I can't feed him forever but it's such a big thing emotionally stopping after so long (H is nearly 14 months) that I'm wondering if I will ever feel ready! 

so so what helped shape your decision and how old were your lo? How did they react?

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  • Ooh I'll be following this :-) I definitely want to get to 12 months at least.

  • I stopped at 15 months as I was pregnant with number 2. I knew I didn't want to tandem feed, and I wanted there to be a big enough gap between stopping feeding J and starting to feed Attila that J didn't get jealous. Stopping made me sad though, I can see myself feeding for longer this time! J was mostly fine about stopping, he was down to 1 feed a day anyway in the morning, and I replaced that with a cup of milk. He asked for boob for a few days but was fine within a week.

  • I'm probably not the best person to answer this, but I wanted to give a balanced view for anyone reading this.... I hated breast feeding (it isn't all happiness and joy for everyone) and E was a difficult feeder due to her cleft.  I stopped at 4 months once she had her surgery (I only carried on that long as I promised myself that I would feed through her surgery as we then had more options to get her feeding afterwards).  However, I think you just have to do what is right for you, if you are comfortable then that is all that matters.

  • I stopped at 3 months with #1, PND was the issue and bottle feeding gave me a feeling of control.

    Stopped at 2.5 yrs with #2, we were down to just a morning feed and I was pregnant with #3. I felt ready to stop by then as he didn't rely on me feeding him anymore and he wasn't at all bothered when we did stop.

    #3 is still going at nearly 7 months and I'd like to keep going to at least 2 years.

  • With no1 I stopped at 8 months due to biting. I carried on trying to feed through it but severe nipple damage and pain forced me to stop. I still remember the day I decided enough was enough and I sat and sobbed whilst giving her her first bottle.

    Still feeding no.2 at 4 months although trying to get her to take a bottle at the mo as i'm due to go away for a night soon. It's not going well so far. I plan to stop at 6 months this time as although I loved feeding no1 after the initial sadness of stop
  • ing I did feel like I had a bit more freedom and could get a part of me back again. (Wearing what I liked without thinking of feeding, going out for the evening etc) however if she won't take a bottle I might end up feeding past 6 months!!!
  • I wanted to get to 6 months with A; in the early days though my target became weeks rather than months as it was so hard. At around 2 months it got easier so I was able to go back to my original goal. I'm going back to work when he's 7 months so in my head I pictured breastfeeding til 6 months then having a month to transition over before I return. However now I'm hoping to go for longer - he has a bottle of expressed milk every other day when his dad puts him to bed and I have a small stash in the freezer so I want to work on building that so he can have that plus feeds from me when I go back. Not sure if this is how it will work out but it does make me sad to think of stopping so I will keep going for as long as I feel that way.

  • i stopped at 1 month. i hated it. she was never full. my supply never came in properly we had to go on a feeding plan and it was all just too much for me. very selfish i know.

  • It's not remotely selfish Twink, you have to do what's right for both of you.

  • I stopped at six months with W. I always said I would try to bf but if I didn't like it or couldn't do it I wouldn't make myself. After a difficult start we got the hang of it and it went well. I loved the closeness of bf but as I'd already said I would stop at 6months I stuck to it and when we started to wean I switched her to formula.

    I was really sad to stop as loved the bonding experience, but in a way I'm glad I set myself a time limit as otherwise if I didn't then I don't know when I would have stopped. I was very sad initially but did like being able to wear what I wanted without thinking about boob access!

    This time the plan is to treat B the same and stop at 6 months. H is very keen for me to stop as B has been a very clingy demanding baby and he has felt quite helpless a lot because she wants a boob and refuses a bottle.  But because of this I can't see how feasible it is to stop in six weeks as she won't take bottles no matter how hungry she is.

  • I stopped at 10 weeks. She started refusing and it stressed me out, I also needed to not be tied to her 24/7, selfish but I think my mental health woukd have suffered. She fine, wasn't bothered!
  • I'm following this with interest. T has one feed a day just before bed and I feel it's more of a routine now, instigated by me, as opposed to him actually asking for it. I always wanted to be led by him and I think it's me that's continuing things because I love the closeness of it. T's 21 months now and I think I feel comfortable stopping - I'm going away for 5 nights tomorrow and might take the opportunity to call it a day after that.

    I went back to work when T was 7 months Tina Teaspoon - I expressed for about 6 weeks at lunchtime but then T didn't want it - he fed in the morning, then 2 - 3 times after I came home from work (which reduced as he got older). Obviously every baby is different but it worked out for us!

  • I stopped at 13 months (just recently). I got pregnant when he was about 10/11 months and initially planned to tandem feed, as I'd hoped to get to 2 years.

    However I went back to work at 12.5 months, and although I work part-time, I decided to keep things consistent so offered cows milk in a bottle during the day and just breastfed once at bedtime and once during the night. He took to it really well and never asked for boob. Quite quickly he actually dropped the night feed himself and then one bedtime I just thought 'f*** this' and gave him a bottle before bed. He drank it and fell asleep and the sense of relief was just so huge, I decided to give up altogether. He hasn't noticed. If he had protested I might have continued.

    I've never enjoyed feeding him and have actively hated it at several points, so I'm still proud of the 13 months, even if it was short of my 'target'. It was good for a lazy mummy like me, no getting up to sterilise/make up formula etc, but I've never enjoyed it like they tell you you should. It was a chore. I'd rather have changed nappies TBH. It was an intellectual decision to breastfeed that long, not instinctive. Giving up was instinctive! I just wanted to!

  • I stopped properly when S was 20 weeks after mix feeding for 6 weeks. I don't think I ever had a great supply due to a big pph, anemia and tt in the early days - I don't think we got off on the right foot. Most feeds were a battle and we ended up with consistent green nappies for 2 months. Support locally for breastfeeding is pants so there was little I could do to get help.

    Tbh, I was emotionally drained from it and felt utterly overwhelmed by the whole experience. I loved the closeness but constantly questioned myself about him getting enough, if what I'd eaten had affected him etc, it was exhausting.

    Switching to formula improved my sanity 100%, even though I was sad at first.

  • I stopped at 18 months, mainly because I wanted to start ttc for no 2 & I was also going on my sisters hen weekend & would be away a whole weekend (never spent a night away from her before that) & had stopped expressing a 14 months. I was very lucky that it was a smooth journey for me & my work were fab with providing me a private a place to express whenever I needed to. I'm hoping to be able to do similar with this 1.

  • I stopped at 19month's because I was pregnant again. I am aiming to get to at least 2yrs this time :-)
  • Thanks everyone for your comments. It seems there are similar reasons for stopping if you've managed to feed for a long time so I feel happier to continue longer now and just see how we go (although I don't think there will he another baby so that won't impact!).

    I hope none was offended by my post, I realise how difficult some people find bf and can't continue. We were lucky in that it worked for us despite a poor latch, pain and mastitis bouts but I realise not everyone can say the same. I was just trying to rationalise my own position in my head by drawing on wider experiences as I have v few friends who've bf and none to this stage.

    Thanks again x

  • With C, my milk never fully came in (he was in SCBU, so then had donor milk.

    With J, I only managed around 8 weeks, as I just wasn't producing enough for him.

  • LM, I'm in the same position...he's now 11m and has just 2 feeds a day (both at night). I'm feeling less emotional about it all now he's eating proper food but I still feel weird about stopping completely. Probably doesn't help that he never took to a bottle! I know I'd like him to be able to stay over at my parents so maybe I need to focus on that. The sense of relief when I stopped bfing in the day was incredible...not being the ONLY person to be able to care for him was nice. I always wanted to get to a year and we are so close and I know I should just feel proud but there is something much more emotional about it! Good luck with whatever you decide x

  • I've fed my boys until they self weaned.  F was 23m, T was 22m and R is still going at 25m.

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