It makes me sad that there are so many people out there who want to judge the way we parent, who feel the need to comment, "advise" or simply to thrust their ideal world at you as a poignant reminder of your failings.
Some days it feels like there is no more controversial parenting topic than breastfeeding. From the breastfeeding zealots to the breastfeeding specialists to the health visitors, there is a lot of pressure to feed your baby this way. I don't disagree that breastfeeding gives your little ones a great start in life. But breastfeeding is just one piece of the jigsaw and every parent needs to look at the big picture of what is right for their child, not just feeding in isolation.
When Little Monster was first born, I had issues with overactive letdown. It made feeding quite difficult sometimes. Little Monster would break off choking or get bad gas. We started to get past this and then I got a stomach bug for a few days. I was so off my food that my supply was badly affected and it never recovered. After that, I would spend every day stressing about eating and drinking enough and, despite that, the early evening feeds became really difficult. Little Monster wasn't getting enough milk and he was difficult to settle. My anxiety about this was a contributor to my insomnia.
So for all the right reasons I decided to call it a day. In our big picture, I can be a better mum to Little Monster by stopping and, honestly, he seems happier for it.
I know that I have been and will be judged for my decision. Our breastfeeding specialist reacted with a 'hmm' and tried to hide a disapproving look. Actually, it would have been nice to get some support with stopping; physically and emotionally it's not that easy to do.
Do I think I made the right decision? Yes. Am I just a little bit sad? Absolutely.