Thinking about giving up breastfeeding…

Late night boob feeds... they take a toll when she's pinching and kicking.

Late night boob feeds… they take a toll when she’s pinching and kicking.

I’ve always been a big advocate of breastfeeding. Or rather, I have since I could do it myself with Toby – when I struggled and couldn’t with Reuben I was rather devastated and as such I had a bit of a green eyed monster situation going on. Anyhoo, boobies are our thing nowadays, we have mucho love for the boobs, with absolutely no one in the house batting an eye lid when Edie stamps her foot and I pop one out like one would grab a chocolate bar at a petrol station.

I had planned to feed Edie as long as she wanted really, giving her free reign to self wean in the way that Toby did at about 11 months, however it would appear that Edith’s connection to my now demolished boobs is significantly stronger than her brother’s was. In fact, I’m pretty confident she will never stop, and as she flutters between being a boob-grabbing, pinching and squeezing demon and a sweet child who nurses like an angel, I’m beginning to wonder how much more I can take.

I don’t know if it’s a latch thing, but lately breastfeeding Edie is no fun. In fact it has become rather uncomfortable, I can feel her teeth, she pinches me constantly and she is not shy in her persistent pummelling of my tummy like a kitten about to bed down.

I never really wanted to think about weaning her, or find breastfeeding to be a burden. I’ve, excluding the sleepless nights and continual demands that can only be met by me, enjoyed breastfeeding. I’ve relished the bond that we have created and the quiet moments when I can hold her close and we have something special, just us two. It’s a rarity to have something that is completely special for you and one child when you’re a mother of three. So much is shared, so much is spread too thinly. But not breastfeeding.

There have been instances where I have resented breastfeeding. I very clearly remember we had booked a night out, Adam, myself and another couple, but with Edie only being 6 weeks old I could go. I was gutted and I did resent it (I resented him far more for leaving me behind while he swanned off in his usual “having-children-changes-my-life-in-exactly-zero-ways” form, but that’s another story…). I resented being the only one that she could feed from, but as I was putting her down for her first block of two hours sleep that night, I could help but feel overwhelmed with love for her, and any worries about missing out faded into the background ready to be lobbed at Adam in the morning like Russian missiles.

Present day and even those blissful moments aren’t so sweet anymore. She has just sat on my lap a few minutes ago as I type and started smacking my chest while squealing like a very angry, very stuck piglet… She isn’t hungry, she doesn’t need a feed. Yet here we are.

I guess what I’m saying is… I’m thinking about weaning Edith. I’m thinking about telling her no more and powering through for a week or two of persistent demands and extra cuddles. I’m not sure whether it would be the right thing to do or not, but I don’t think myself or my poor battered boobs are willing to take much more.

When did your little ones stop breastfeeding?

H x

26 Comments

  1. Lucy
    July 8, 2018 / 9:03 pm

    My first I had to stop at 2 weeks for medical reasons but my second I weaned her at 13 months. I hated breastfeeding, I’m not ashamed to say that either. I only did it because it was easy, I was super lucky to get a baby that fed quickly and didn’t pinch or cluster feed. If it feels like the time is right to wean then that what you should do. You have done amazing feeding this long. X

  2. Jane
    August 6, 2017 / 9:12 am

    Am on the same boat my boy is almost 16 months and still breastfeeding not sure when he will stop I try to say no a few times but I give in when he starts screaming me a sad look and I can’t take it so I give in always

  3. Angie
    August 5, 2017 / 11:17 am

    My monkey is 2 and is still a boobie monster she is sitting on my lap as I type demanding boobie!! I was happy for her to self wean but can’t see that happening any time soon so may have to intervene as I’d quite like some sleep and rest bite from being like daisy the cow lol xx

  4. November 9, 2016 / 9:08 pm

    I’m in the same boat with my 16 month old! She pretty much uses me like a dummy through the night and it feel like the “easy life” option. However, she barely goes a 4 hour stretch without feeding! (We stopped day time feeds more or less by 12 months ) I just dread the pacing the floors to settle her back to sleep without feeding and fear I’ll cave! I feel ready to wean but have the fear of how difficult it may be. Watching this for any tips too x

  5. August 15, 2016 / 1:47 pm

    I battled on for several years, so I’m quite a veteran of b/f. It is a big decision, only you know if it’s right for you. My younger one stopped of his own volition, very abruptly.

    • Harriet August 15, 2016 / 8:10 pm

      Ah thanks for this lovely comment! H x

  6. Sarah
    August 11, 2016 / 11:32 pm

    My eldest self weaned at 2.5yrs, when I was pregnant with my youngest. My youngest was a boob monster & I initiated weaning with her. She finally stopped just after she turned 3. It can be really tough when you’re being demanded all the time! You need your personal space sometimes & feel ‘touched out’. Can you try setting some boundaries? Or insist that she’s more gentle/take her off the boob if she hurts you, say ‘nicely please/gently/something equivalent that she ‘gets’, before letting her finish feeding?

  7. August 9, 2016 / 3:45 pm

    My sister always said only give up breastfeeding on a good day. Not when you’re struggling. Although I’m not sure you have any good days coming up by the sounds of it. Only you’ll be able to tell when enough is enough for you. Good luck whatever your decision! x

  8. August 9, 2016 / 3:44 pm

    Ive not got children but it sounds as though you are struggling with your decision and you shouldnt be at all hun, do what is right for you and it doesnt matter what anyone else thinks x

  9. Jemma
    August 9, 2016 / 3:47 am

    First of all, well done you! We stopped when my girl was 14 months and it was definitely the right time for us. It had become uncomfortable and draining. It’s so hard when you feel you’re ready to stop but also both understandably have the attachment to it x

  10. August 9, 2016 / 3:29 am

    I don’t have any experience with breast feeding myself but I do know that lots of my older friends who have had children have said that they found so much pressure from their midwives to breast feed xxx

  11. August 8, 2016 / 11:14 pm

    I never breast fed, I was ill when I had Joe and the medication was unsafe. He turned out fine. If you feel the time is right then do it.x

  12. August 8, 2016 / 10:50 pm

    Its up to you lovely but weaning Edith might give you peace of mind and make you feel better. Weaning can be difficult xx

  13. August 8, 2016 / 9:45 pm

    Do what make you happy, the stigmatize women/mother get for giving up breast feeding early is shocking! do what is right for you. xx

  14. August 8, 2016 / 9:16 pm

    I hope you’re not feeling guilty about it, because there’s nothing wrong with stopping if the time is right. There’s no perfect time for anyone. I think it’s just fine.

  15. August 8, 2016 / 9:13 pm

    I never lasted long enough for any of them to have teeth come through you’ve done well lasting this long. The best thing for you to do is what you feel comfortable with so if you’re not ready persist a little longer x

  16. August 8, 2016 / 8:13 pm

    Do what makes you feel happy, I only managed two weeks with Lilly so I am so glad you managed to fed Edith for so long x

  17. August 8, 2016 / 6:24 pm

    How old is she? I went through this a couple of months ago, I don’t know if he was holding and latching differently because of particular teeth that were coming through but I really felt out of love with breastfeeding. Anway, I carried on and we went back to normal, a few weeks later weaned him off day time feeds so he now knows that he doesn’t feed until he gets into bed at night and his last feed is in bed before he gets up in the morning. He’s nearly 18 months x

    • Harriet August 8, 2016 / 8:12 pm

      Funnily she’s 18m Jenni! Maybe its an age thing?!

  18. August 8, 2016 / 5:12 pm

    You have to do what you feel is right for both you and your children. If you think it’s time to give up breastfeeding then you should do it x

  19. August 8, 2016 / 4:01 pm

    I have 3 kids. My first I couldn’t breastfeed, as he would just not latch on and after 3 days of him consently crying I gave up. With my second, I tried again. She latched on a few times, but then started having difficulty. I didn’t want to give up, so I just expressed my milk and gave it her in a bottle, With my 3rd baby I suffered with post-natal depression, so again could breastfeed due to the medications I was on.

    But I say to you, that you have done an amazing job. And when ever it feels right for you to stop, stop.

  20. August 8, 2016 / 2:17 pm

    I only managed 4 months with both my babies. I was sad to stop but my daughter struggled with my flow and my son was cut off by the health visitor for medical reasons. You’ve done amazing! x

  21. August 8, 2016 / 12:58 pm

    Breastfeeding can be hard!!! I remember with my first he just couldn’t grasp the art of latching causing my nips to crack and a very painful breastfeeding experience! I had to stop within 3 weeks of trying. With my second however it couldn’t have been any different, he latched straight away and I successfully breastfed for a year and 3 months until I decided I wanted my boobs back… finally! You have already given you LO a great start so don’t feel disheartened that you want to stop!!

  22. August 8, 2016 / 10:26 am

    Ah it’s a big decision lovely. I didn’t breastfeed so can’t help from personal experience but I think you know in your heart when the time is right xx

  23. August 8, 2016 / 9:21 am

    Awww bless you, I think if you feel it’s time to wean her then do it for you both.

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