Yes, I Breastfeed My Baby To Sleep

You know what I just don't understand?  Anyone who has a problem with "feeding to sleep".

I went without wine for 9 months, pushed a human out of my vagina and somehow figured out how to get Big Sister to school ON TIME while simultaneously managing diaper blow outs and cluster feeding.  These precious minutes of sleepy feeding are literally gold dust...they allow me to slow down, to connect, to breathe.

Why oh why anybody would have an issue with this gift from above is beyond me.

We've all heard it, right? The torrent of opinions that encircles this particular aspect of mothering...

"You're making a rod for your own back!"

"He'll never learn to self-soothe!"

"You're creating an unhealthy sleep association!"

An unhealthy sleep association?  Really?  There have been studies proving that sleeping with somebody you love literally lengthens a person's life.  Because what could be better than falling asleep, safe and secure, in the arms of the one who loves you most in the world?

You see, science really is on our side...just take a look at the composition of breast milk. This liquid gold of ours is laced with sleepy juice (also known as the hormone cholecystokinin).  It is no coincidence that babies fall asleep at the breast; it is by design.

Not only do our little ones fall asleep more easily while breastfeeding, but researchers are also finding that night-nursing is a crucial aspect of establishing a baby's circadian rhythm.  A rise in nocturnal levels of nucleotides in human breast milk is responsible for what the researchers refer to as "the 'hypnotic' action of breast-milk at night in the infant."

Hypnotic...I couldn't love the terminology more if I tried.

Moms, breastfeeding your baby to sleep is not a bad thing.  It isn't a habit that needs breaking or a rod for your back.  It is biologically expected, healthy and developmentally appropriate.  Trust in your instincts, trust in your babies...and when the noise of damaging cultural expectations becomes too loud, trust in the science.

I'll be doing the same thing from over here, doped up on oxytocin and enjoying these precious life-lengthening snuggles with my baby.


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  1. My baby goes through phases of needing me to feed him to sleep and if taking himself off. I let him decide. Feeding him to sleep is beautiful and I wish I'd been able to feed my daughter but stopped at 7 weeks as I was getting to a bad place. Feeding your baby any method is good, feeding to sleep feels so close 😊

  2. I was just about to wean my 27mths old. I think i will now let him continue to breast feeding to sleep. Thanks for your amazing post!

  3. Somehow the act of nurturing got lost in our society and culture. Breastfeeding and co-sleeping are some of the best free gifts and the most therapeutic relaxing thing ever.

  4. So amazing! Yesterday i was thinking about sending you a mail. About this. Sliiiightly older baby: 3,5 y.πŸ˜†πŸ’—
    Will do it anyways ( if i manage not to forget, while searching your address).
    Thanks for the great post! I feel totally empowered by it πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸŒžπŸ‘„

    Els x

  5. Yes! Social pressure is a mega bummer! My 1.5 year old has fed to sleep since day one. Not only is it such a nice thing to do, it is also the easiest way to get him to sleep and god knows that us tired Mama's need an easy option!

  6. Thank you. I was already getting pressure from family about breastfeeding �� my 6 month old and cosleeping. That I’m making bad habits and he’ll sleep with me forever blah blah blah