I would say that you should breastfeed for as long as you and Charlie both want to do so. Each child and each situation is different. I had to stop nursing my first son at 3 months due to a medication. I nursed my second child until she was almost three years old - she was actually old enough and articulate enough for us to discuss that it was time to wean. She showed no interest in a bottle ever and did not really want to eat baby food/table food until she was over 8 months. I nursed my youngest until she was 11 months - she actually self-weaned - she no longer wanted to sit still long enough to nurse lol!! She was the opposite of her big sister - she wanted baby cereal as soon as she was old enough for it and began eating "people food" soon after.
So, if you and Charlie are both still enjoying breastfeeding, keep it up! There is no cut off date for nursing - it is entirely up to the two of you :).
BTW - younger mothers are not always as comfortable nursing, so I wanted to congratulate you for making that commitment for Charlie AND for yourself <3.
Congratulations on your new baby and decision to breastfeed. There are no rules about how long to breastfeed, as long as both mom and baby are happy you can continue as long as you feel you want to. During the first year of life breastmilk or formula should be a babies main source of nutrition. Many mothers aim to make it to that first birthday mark as cows milk can then be given as a drink, however most paediatric associations now say until the second birthday and beyond for maximum health benefits to mom and baby.
However if you decide to switch to formula rest assured it will provide perfectly adequate nutrition for your baby.
Go as long as you can! I went to 11 months with my son. We did a slow wean near the end and it was great! I myself couldn't imagine nursing him any longer than that but that was just me. I love nursing though...it was a sad process to wean him!
With my boys it got progressively longer, lol. My oldest nursed until 14 months but started solids at 5/6 months, table foods soon after. He is almost 11, overweight and has asthma. My second, I nursed for 15 months but held out a bit on solids. My youngest nursed 19 months, never did baby food or solids until his 1st birthday cake and not really again until he was over14 months and he is the picture of health even with an open congenital heart defect. I let them lead on weaning to an extent. We went very slowly and if they decided they weren't ready after all, we started over when they were ready.
I set small goals. I knew I wanted to try for a year with my first. However, being my first I wanted to push him through the feeding stuff. I regret it now. I wish that I had just let nature, not my own urge to make him start solids, take its course.
Go with what feels right, don't let the desire to have baby grow up too quick take control. They are only this young once!
If you stop breastfeeding you'll still need to give your baby formula in addition to solid food until he is 1 year old, and then whole milk after that. Babies don't get very much from solids nutritionally for a long time and solid food alone is just not adequate. Your son's pediatrician will have all the information you need when the time comes. Good luck.
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