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  1. #1
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    Default How to give up breastfeeding (15mo)

    I was only going to breastfeed DD2 until 6mo, yet here I am still breastfeeding her at 15mo. I would really like to stop but don't know how! She has never taken a bottle and I feel she is too old to start using one now. She drinks heaps of water from all kinds of sippy cups but refuses to have more than a sip once there is milk in there.

    Please help! She generally has 3 feeds a day - one in the morning (she usually wakes once in the early am and has a feed before going back to sleep), once before her daytime nap and once before bed at night. She self settles so doesn't feed to sleep.

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    My DS1 was the same - except he fed a lot overnight. He never had bottles but used a sippy cup for water. I can't remember when I started but I started doing 'don't offer, don't refuse' during the day and he gradually weaned himself totally by 19 months. I wasn't too worried about his milk intake as he did drink milk sometimes from a sippy cup and he ate a lot of cheese and other calcium-rich foods.

    Edited to add: also, I found he drank more milk if it was warmed up, and I used a different type of cup to his water ones.

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    @Electric Boogaloo, so the night feeds just gradually stopped too? My 12 month old still has me up 4 times a night feeding. So over it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bond Girl View Post
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    @Electric Boogaloo, so the night feeds just gradually stopped too? My 12 month old still has me up 4 times a night feeding. So over it.
    My 20 month old still feeds at leas 4/5 times per night. I forget what it feels like to get even a couple of solid hours sleep.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunnybambino View Post
    I was only going to breastfeed DD2 until 6mo, yet here I am still breastfeeding her at 15mo. I would really like to stop but don't know how! She has never taken a bottle and I feel she is too old to start using one now. She drinks heaps of water from all kinds of sippy cups but refuses to have more than a sip once there is milk in there.

    Please help! She generally has 3 feeds a day - one in the morning (she usually wakes once in the early am and has a feed before going back to sleep), once before her daytime nap and once before bed at night. She self settles so doesn't feed to sleep.
    I just stopped (but my youngest was 12 months) and she didn't really look for it either. Have you tried just stopping? Or drop one feed for a few days, then another one after another few days.

    I think it will be pretty easy since your bub is not being fed to sleep or waking up during the night. That's why I think my third adjusted so well as we stopped feeding to sleep around 3 months, and she's always been a really good sleeper.

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    I would aim to start with one feed and try distracting with other things.

    With ds he dropped all of his during the day feeds and just had one in the morning when he got up, one before bed and then anywhere from 2-7 overnight (mostly the higher end of the range).

    Next to go was the morning feed. I started with the don't offer, don't refuse. But after awhile I just distracted if he asked as he'd gone a few days without it so didn't want to go backwards.

    I can't remember how old he was at this stage but probably around 18mths.

    At around 20 mths I'd had enough night feeds. It was only a habit for him not hunger or thirst and neither of us were getting enough sleep with the 6-7 feeds a night. So DH spent three long nights of settling him. Long because he was used to feeding when he woke then going straight back to sleep, not because he was distraught. It actually went easier than I expected.

    After a week he regularly slept through otherwise tolerated a cuddle from even me. Now a couple months in sleeping through is the norm for him.

    It was however the beginning of the end of our bfing journey as he started to not ask for his only remaining feed which was before bed. He'd go several days without asking, then ask for two and then repeat again. About 1.5 weeks ago he went for 5 nights then asked but by this point I'd come to terms with him weaning so I suggested we read a book instead and he accepted it.

    He's stopped asking now except the random times where I just say it's all gone and he accepts it.

    Sorry that turned out quite long. In short my advice is don't offer, don't refuse and drop one feed at a time in the order I did above. DS being that little bit older may have helped but I think it could still work the same for you. May just take a little longer before stopping the asking for it full stop.

    Just remember to offer lots of cuddles still. Oh and while dropping feeds I tried to avoid sitting with ds where I normally fed him etc so it didn't prompt him to ask.

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    I would start cutting down the length of feeds than cutting one feed out at a time, that's how I have done it 3 times Used lots of distraction techniques but it wasn't too hard as I was not saying no full stop. Good luck

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bond Girl View Post
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    @Electric Boogaloo, so the night feeds just gradually stopped too? My 12 month old still has me up 4 times a night feeding. So over it.
    Yes, amazing I know! One night we were at my parents' place and he decided he wanted to sleep there so we let him (so obviously he didn't feed that night). Then a couple of days later we went on holiday and he didn't BF any mor. I think it was the change of environment that finally clinched it. He still woke at night for a while but he was happy with a bit of a cuddle.

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    I got rid of morning feed by going for a drive and he fell asleep in the car. So the next day I just offered milk in straw cup no boobs.
    Middle of the night I got him down to one feed then when I knew he has enough carbs for dinner I just offered water and stayed strong. No boobs. We were co sleeping so just cuddles only.
    When we were down to bed time only at 14m I just thought one night I don't feel like it so I just didn't offer and he didn't ask. Now 15m he still tries to get in my top now and then. I just give him a sippy cup of milk and he's happy.
    It's your decision. Just do one feed at a time

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    I would drop the daytime nap one, then the early morning then the bed one if it were me.

    We dropped the lunch feed at about 14 months when we dropped to 1 sleep a day. Then at about 16 months I started offering breakfast first before feeds and he wouldn't have a bar of it and crack it so I'd feed until one day he happily ate his breaky first and didn't ask for boob.

    We still are doing 1 feed a day before bed at 18 months and I'm ok with it at the moment. I basically have no milk as I'm 33 weeks pregnant but he still wants it so I'm happy to keep going. When I'm not home he takes a small amount of cows milk in a cup.

    So for us, I did the don't offer don't refuse and when he was ready it was easy to stop each of the feeds we've dropped

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