C.W. asks from Sarasota, FL on March 19, 2008
Breastfeeding & Menstrual Cycle
I breastfed our son for 11 months. I stopped breastfeeding him around Feb. 14th, 2008 and have NOT had my menstrual cycle yet. I did NOT have any periods during breastfeeding either. The last time I had a period was right before our son was conceived, June 2006!! It took my husband and I two years to conceive our son (2 miscarriages in between) and we would like to start trying for baby #2. The problem is, I have not had a period yet so it is hard to know when/if I am ovulating. So, has anyone been in a similar circumstance? And if so, how long did it take for your menstrual cycle to resume? My ob/gyn mentioned it could take 4 weeks to 12 weeks, depending on the person...I've made it past the 4 week mark....
So What Happened?™
Well, I would just like to tell everyone that I am 7 weeks pregnant! It turns out I never got my period after weaning from the breast because I got pregnant right away. I just thought my body was taking a while to "kick in" but eventually my husband told me that I was pregnant. I thought he was crazy, so he bought a HPT and he was right, I was pregnant!! We are so excited!! It has been a crazy pregnancy though and I have to go to the doctor next monday for another ultrasound to check on the baby's heartbeat. It should be 120 and last week it was 108. Not too slow but not in the normal range. So please keep us in your prayers!!
H.C. answers from Tampa on March 20, 2008
Hi, C.. Mine came back after 11 months (and for me, it was a glorious, feminine product-free 11 months!), at which point in time I was still breastfeeding. 4 weeks for a breastfeeding mom is actually pretty rare. Not unheard of, but rare. An excellent resource for general concerns about breastfeeding, including the impact it has on your reporductive cycles, is La Leche League. Since, however, you've stopped already, the likelihood of your cycle returning to "normal" is pretty high. It seems, from those I've talked to, it takes a couple of cycles for your body to regulate, but then it does. It's been just over a month since you've stopped breastfeeding, and though others' advice doesn't always help to quell a worried mind, I imagine you can trust that your body will do what it needs to in its own time. All the best in your baby-making! (I know this probably isn't much of a comfort, but your body is honestly probably just now fully recovering from childbirth the first time around--the AMA recommends two years, which isn't practical or desirable for a lot of people, but it might provide an indicator...).
B.M. answers from Tampa on March 20, 2008
You need to get a basil theromometer. They have kits @ CVS or Walgreens. Take your temperature everyday and record the number. Your temp stays the same until you ovulate. It will go up and stay up untill you are done. If it does not go up you are not ovulating. This type of plan I learned was/is called natural family planning and I learned it from my mom. They teach it in the catholic church but I am sure you can find info on line. I know that they started selling this type of program. It really helps you pin point the best timing for getting pregnant. Good luck.