Friday, 28 June 2013

My future hopes #kbbf #bf2013

I hated breastfeeding my son.  I was adamant that I would do 6 months and then he was getting formula.  I had gone through split bleeding nipples, no sleep, the judgement of those around me, my own personal discomfort, having no life anymore...... and I hated it.

6 months arrived, and I suddenly realised that without noticing I had come to love breastfeeding.  We had overcome all of our issues and were now in this wonderful time where breastfeeding was a lovely, close lull in the daily hum of activity.  I was proud of our achievements, but more to the point I had come to value breastfeeding.  It's not just all the normal benefits that everyone harps on about.  Breastfeeding changed me.  It made me the person I always wanted to be.  That may sound over-zealous but its true.  For me, breastfeeding had become this whole new centre in my life that was this huge source of inspiration and passion.  It had taught me s much about myself and the value of the people who surround me.  It made me want to help other people to have a good experience.  At 6 months,  I was determined to do 2 years.

My son's first birthday arrived.  I was like the queen of breastfeeding.  Everyone new about it because I was always wittering on about it.  I was gonna breastfeed till my children were 30.

15 months came.  My son had lost interest.  He was bored at the breast.  I was basically having to force it down his throat in this massive battle of wills every night where I eventually gave in and just put him to bed.  It was a wrench, but I had to admit to myself that I no longer liked breastfeeding.  I supported it vehemently - but we had come to the end of the road. While I would have fed forever if my son wanted it, he didn't want it either.  I decided not to offer anymore.  There was no ceremonial last feed, which I have mixed feelings about.  I just stopped.  He stopped.  It was over.  I found this very sad, but I am so thankful that we 'self weaned'.  There were no tears (well, not from him), I gave him what he wanted for as long as he wanted.

So where does that leave me now? Nothing has changed.  I will feed my daughter until she doesn't want it anymore.  But I think that this time around I have nothing to prove.  I would love to feed into toddlerhood (although I look at my son who is nearly 3 and find it a bit odd to imagine still breastfeeding him).  I am glad that there was no battle with my son, I didn't upset him by taking his milk away.  It just fizzled out of its own accord. I hope I get that with my daughter.  But, I would like to experience feeding further into toddlerhood if that is what she wants.

Every stage has its beauty.  Even when I look back at feeding my son in the early days, there was a lot that was good about it.  I was just not in a position to recognise that then.  But I do remember the quiet snuggles and the pride as we overcame each barrier.  However, I was inordinately proud to be feeding past a year.   To experience feeding a fidgety active little toddler who keeps pulling off the breast to look at his toys.  Maybe I will get to feed past 2 this time?  To have a baby who has a name for breastfeeding and can talk to me about it.  I think I would like that.

So what is my point? 

Feelings change.  If somebody had said to me when my son was a week old that I would feed him for 15 months and then feel terribly sad when I gave it up, I would have raised my eyebrows in disbelief.  If you now suggested to me that I stopped breastfeeding my daughter before she was ready I would be furious at the suggestion.  As far as I see it, breastfeed your babies as long as you both want, whether that is a week or a year or a decade (OK, that may be going a little far).

The scavenger hunt is drawing to a close.  You might want to check out the posts by

Also have a look at the goods at

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. As long as I can and baby wants to. 4 months and counting at the moment.

  2. 9 months and still going strong. Not sure when I will stop.

  3. I'm hoping like you to self-wean, but we'll see how it goes. So far at 19 months he still has days where he feeds like a newborn so I can't see him stopping for a fair while

  4. I breastfed my daughter for 19 months, we're currently 18 months with no sing of stopping with my son.... we'll stop when we are both ready hopefully

  5. we've just reached 6 months, I stopped feeding DD at 6 1/2 months when she just got too distracted to latch properly, and think we're heading the same direction.

  6. I will stop when my daughter gives me up herself.

  7. Still feeding my 34-m-o and starting to feel really touched out by it. I want to let him wean in his own time, but at the moment I'm hoping that's soon :( Or of course that my reaction is just a phase. I'm hoping that if it doesn't pass it's someting to do with tandem feeding, so I can truly let DD (7m) wean in her own time down the line.

  8. There's some interesting research about the natural age of weaning here:

    My daughter is 27 months and will wean when she's ready.

    1. Thank you for that link, that is fascinating stuff

  9. feeding for 3 months and i am planning on self weaning

  10. I breastfed my son until he was 25 months and plan on letting my daughter self-wean

  11. Hopefully 6 months plus.


  12. As long as my son wants me to.

  13. I breastfed my daughter for 26 months, and am five months and counting with my son. I'd like him to choose when to stop.

  14. I've been breastfeeding my daughter for 22 months now and would like her to stop when she's ready. Expecting number 2 in November, and my IGT means I will have to be careful about how much she feeds to ensure the baby gets as much of my milk as possible.