This is a blog all about my adventures in Breastfeeding Peer Support. I want to share all the things I have learned and celebrate amazing breastfeeding Mothers and their babies.

I would like to share other peoples stories here too. Accounts of problems overcome, funny things your older children have said, strange places you have attached your baby and so on. Please email me with any stories you'd like to share with other breastfeeding Mothers. Please include what you'd like to be called (URLs ok or just a name), how old your baby was at the time and where abouts you are geographically.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

I Don't Want Your Sympathy

I just want somewhere to vent. Seb is off his bosom again. Ten days this time. He fusses at the breast when he's tired so I let him in and he opens wide, gets near and then arches his back and cries. He has pain. He is miserable. I am heart broken.

He doesn't have thrush or any other source of discomfort or pain we can find so am putting it down to the bloody teeth again. Last time it was just four days. This time, everyday I feel a little further away from nursing him ever again.

The fact that he seems to want to nurse now and again makes me think this is not him self-weaning, as most babies do at some point, but there is a reason why he can't at the moment.

He's eleven months old so nutritionally he doesn't need the breastmilk*, he eats three meals a day with snacks inbetween, he eats a wide range of foods including meats, fish, dairy and vegetables.

But he is to be my last baby and I wanted this to go on a little longer, hoping for another year.

A bit of a sob to my peer-supporter supervisor on facebook over the weekend and by monday afternoon the infant feeding team had rallied round and managed to get a spare electric breast pump to my home. I had a good old double pump and for the first time in a week had the 'empty breast' feeling and was more comfortable than I had been for days. I am so grateful for working so closely with the infant feeding team as I fear had I gone down the 'contact your HV' route I'd have been fobbed off and advised to stop now. The pump will have to go back as soon as there is a mother physically unable to nurse her child but for now I'm plugging in a few times a day and stashing the white goodness in the fridge for when he wants it.

As I said, I didn't come for sympathy but just to share with other mothers who will understand my unhappiness. Simon is sympathetic but with Seb cruising round the furniture and scoffing avocado and toast for lunch and chilli and rice for tea he doesn't see why it's so important and maybe it's not really, am I just being selfish, is he ready to move on and I just can't let go?

I think there are many more tears to be shed in the coming weeks by both him and me through sheer frustration and sadness.

But while his prefered method of breastmilk delivery is this;

Then this will have to be my best friend;

* I do think that the WHO recommendation of two years is great (and have achieved it with two of my other children, the other self weaning slightly earlier) but I do wonder to myself whether it is the breastmilk that is of benefit or whether it's just that babies breastfed for longer never have artificial feeds? Something to think about.....


  1. I know I'm probably the last person you want to hear advice from but I just wanted to let you know I hear your sadness.
    What do you tell your mums when they come to you to talk about weaning from the breast? I bet you tell them that it's a choice for them and their baby alone, that they've done a fab job nursing for X number of weeks, months etc. To think of all the goodness and benefits already given by them. And the same applies for you. Don't beat yourself up with how long YOU wanted to feed Seb. Instead think of how much longer you have nursed him than other mama's. Especially those who never nursed at all. Maybe he doesn't want to stop, maybe it is his teeth, or whatever. But he feels the need to draw back from nursing and you know that you have to let him. So yes to keep pumping, keep offering, keeping your mind open, but rejoice also in that you never gave him formula, that you nursed him for so long beyond the norm, that you didn't remove the choice to stop from him. And maybe he will return to the breast. But if not then remember you are a fantastic mama and despite what we preach each and every day it's not the be all and end all. He is almost 12 months old and needing the nutrition of breastmilk less and less. And the emotional comfort that goes with full term breastfeeding can, and will, be supplied in a multitude of ways.
    Well done mama! xx

  2. Oh bless you. I didn't comment last night when I first read this post because I wasn't really sure what to say. It is difficult to know what to say, and as the above person says you have to perhaps consider what you would say to others in a similiar situation. I think you have done fantastically well with your feeding (all of them) to date and that HAS to be something to rejoice about. If this is the end, then please try not to worry about it, think about all you have achieved. And think of the breastfeeding journey you and the little ones' have taken, and all the help and support you have given others. I know for one, that I certainly couldn't have survived being stuck in Norway away from Bronte without your e-mails of support and encouragement. I can't say any more than I am here if you ever want to talk. Hugs xxx