Breastfeeding and Baby Led Weaning

Lots of the information that I’ve seen and been given suggests that once you start weaning the baby will instantly take less milk and more food. Some of it even suggests dropping feeds during the day. Well, Boomer is a few days shy of nine months and still takes about 4 or 5 feeds a day, and generally one at night. She can last pretty well without milk during the day if she is at granny and grandpas but if the perpetual milk machine (me) is about then she doesn’t see the point in being strong.

I have been lucky with breastfeeding it started well and apart from some nasty bouts of mastitis and a pornographic bra size things have flowed quite smoothly, if you pardon the pun. As a general plan I hope to feed Boomer myself till she reaches one and then switch her to drinking ordinary cow’s milk. However, best laid plans and all that, so we’ll just see how we get on. I have no plans to be a documentary mum who is still breastfeeding when her daughter has her driving license. I am very pro breastfeeding but I have heard enough heart wrenching stories to realise that it is not always the answer.

The hardest thing is probably other people who seem to think that now Boomer is on solids she will just instantly stop wanting the boob. I am obviously going to feed my baby if she wants fed. However it can be slightly embarrassing when she starts pulling my top or nuzzling into my chest – she’s not the subtlest. I think my family are pretty supportive now they have realised that I was going to spontaneously stop breastfeeding the instant Boomer hit six months. Why I would give myself something else to do (i.e. making up bottles) I don’t know.

Slowly, and I mean really slowly I am managing to fixate less on these magical time markers. Every little stage is held out before you as if once you get to it everything will be ok. When they are first born it’s 8 weeks, once she hits eight weeks there will be a routine – bollocks. Then its 4 months – once they hit 4 months she’ll start sleeping through – bollocks. Then 6 months becomes a magical thing, once she gets some food in her little tummy then she’ll start sleeping/stop milk/start playing the piano. Things just change slowly and I don’t want to force it.

15 Responses to “Breastfeeding and Baby Led Weaning”

  1. Mary Conaghan says:

    Love the sense of humour and the frank take on the subjects mentioned. Gets a little too earnest at times, which makes simplifying it and having a laugh so important. I laughed a lot reading your comments!

  2. Megan says:

    I LOVE your honesty, the way you describe the “once they hit this age it’ll be better blah blah” is so truthful.
    I guess mothers continue the myth that once so and so is done all will be good to help other mums cope and see it through..

    • Aitch says:

      i suppose so. it’s such a difficult time, or can be, that any ray of hope is a beacon.

      • Aitch says:

        just to be clear, though, i didn’t write this… i am The World’s Worst Breastfeeder. This was a pal who wrote it back in the early days, to give the perspective of the successful bfer.

  3. Jennifer says:

    Hi! I’m from the US, and I’m new to your site and BLW. Gotta say, I love the idea of BLW, and starting real solids, not mush. I’m on a WIC program, however, that provides Gerber foods. I’m also Breastfeeding. Cooper is 6 months and we’ve been doing solids for 3 wks. Is it ok to do the mush along with the whole foods?

    • Aitch says:

      Mush and finger food is really just traditional weaning, yes, so definitely go for it. Just let him at it and see how he goes. And don’t forget that he can feed himself the mush as well, although you might have to load the spoons up for him at the beginning.

  4. J3nny_white says:

    I love love love this post and this website, am currently in my third week back at work, and second week of BLW. My LO is 6.5 months old. I had previously planned to stop BF at 6 months, but to be fair, I quite like the bonding at the breakfast feed before work, and then once we get home. It doesnt seem to dampen her appetite for solids and is a godsend that I am still BF when she wakes pretty much every night at around 2am. I am thankful for these frank, funny posts which confirm what I am doing (going with the flow!) is ok, and I shouldnt bow down to presssure from society to stop BF and feed my baby mush. Thanks for empowering us mums :0) xx

  5. Andrea says:

    As a 65 yr old gramma it is wonderful to listen to young mothers still struggling with motherhood much the same as we did. One thing that has not changed is the concept that the breast is just a delivery system for nutrition. While that may be the obvious answer, the reason babies do not abandon the breast even when fully capable of feeding themselves, is that it also delivers emotional support to help them deal with the exciting but sometimes stressful and even scary world that they are growing into. Don’t worry they and you will eventually decide what is right for your family. When the time comes make sure to give lots of hugs and just physical bonding – that is what they will miss and that is what you must replace – like walking they will gradually feel confident enough to let go. I know it is stressful sometimes and seems like no end in site but a dependent baby now yields a confident, independent child who knows you are always their for them on a deeply emotional level. Enjoy.

  6. Missymelliot says:

    Lovin this site, just found it on my exploration of all things BLW on the web. This post in particular made me literally LOL. I too am trying hard to shake off expectations based on babies age, especially the she’ll sleep through the night by 12/16/20 weeks. Nope nope nope. Thanks for making a tired BFing mum laugh

  7. Sarah says:

    omg! This has me in tears because I thought I was the only one! I love your site, you give me confidence! / love from Sweden

  8. Nicole says:

    Thank you so much… I so enjoyed ready this article. You had me laughing out loud. I’m glad I’m not the only with – what seems like everybody else’s baby sleeping through the night as of 3-4 months. Thank you from Austria

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