Trying to Conceive While Breastfeeding

Updated on March 28, 2009
M.M. asks from Lewisville, TX
9 answers

Hi Moms!
I started to look for another baby while still breastfeeding my 15 mo. baby. I nurse twice a day and I haven't seen my period since I got pregnant. I stopped taking contraceptive last month. I counted 14 days after my last day of contractive and had intercourse with my hubby. If I really ovulated I should have my period back by last Friday (if any). I did the pregnancy test and it was negative.
I know you can ovulate while breastfeeding, but since I don't have my period I don't know where I am on my cycle. I will like to see some advices from other moms that has been thru this. Is it dificult to conceive again? I know that if I don't get my period after taking the contractive it doesn't mean I'm pregnant. So, that's why I would like some opinions.

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So What Happened?

Thank you everyone for your advices. The wonderful news is that I'm pregnant. I'm 8 weeks which means that after I was worried about trying to conceive I was really pregnant. It's a blessing to me to conceive without much work. Once again thank you for your great advices.

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answers from Dallas on

Despite some of the other comments....I was breastfeeding my 7 month old son (his only solid food was cereal for breakfast), no periods since his birth, using a diaphragm, and still became pregnant with my daughter. ;)

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answers from Dallas on

Seems like you've gotten a lot of "it's so easy to get pregnant while breastfeeding!" advice, so I'll give you the other side of the story.

I stopped birth control (got my IUD out) in April 2008, when my daughter was 10 months old. At the time, I was in the process of stopping pumping at work. By June 2008, I was down to nursing only twice a day, just like you.

I did not get my period until late November 2008, when my daughter was 17 months old. I had one more period (after a 40-day cycle) and then got pregnant on my next cycle, in mid-February 2009, but miscarried less than two weeks later. The miscarriage was about a month ago, and I'm still waiting for my first period after that.

So I've now been trying for almost a year, and I'm still not pregnant. I got pregnant very easily with my daughter, so I am sure that it's breastfeeding that's contributed to my issues getting pregnant.

I highly recommend NFP, which someone else recommended, too. I started doing it in July 2008. I check my cervical fluid when I go to the bathroom, and I also take my temperature every morning -- very quick and easy. It makes it *very* clear what is going on with my body, so I know exactly when I'm ovulating and can time intercourse appropriately. With my long cycles, I cannot even imagine how much money I would have wasted on pregnancy tests over the last year if I hadn't been using NFP.

I read the book "Taking Charge of Your Fertility" to learn how to do this. You can also go to -- it's a free web site where you can input your fertility signs (the cervical fluid and temperatures I mentioned before) in there and it tracks them and tells you when you ovulated. Really, really easy. They also have a free e-course that you can take that teaches you all about NFP and charting, if you don't want to buy the book I mentioned.

Good luck! I hope it won't take as long for you as it has for me =)



answers from Dallas on

Natural Family Planning is an easy, free way to track your fertility while breastfeeding (instead of using contraceptives. NFP is as effective when used correctly).

Check out this site for some great information and free charts:

This is the method I use:
My fertility returns very early, even with full-time breastfeeding.

Both of these methods offer information for charting while breastfeeding, in case you decide to continue nursing.

Like another post said, it takes a while for your hormones to switch gears, so be patient and good luck!



answers from Dallas on

I became pregnant while nursing a two year old & continued to nurse her through my pregnancy and still nurse her a bit now, five months after having the baby. We weren't trying to have another baby & we even "pulled out." Perhaps TMI, but I wanted to clarify that it can be very easy indeed to conceive while nursing. :)

I'd bet that as soon as your body gets back to normal after a couple of months of being rid of the contraceptives, you'll be knocked right up! :)

There is a tandem nursing forum at; perhaps the ladies there will be helpful in answering your TTC while nursing questions.


answers from Dallas on

Be patient... I know you can get pregnant while nursing... Unfortunately I wasn't lucky enough to stop my period while nursing like most lucky mothers (including all my sisters). Anyway, the best way you know you are ovulating is that you'll have mucus layer discharge (sounds gross), you'll know what I'm talking about. If you have sex during that time you will most likely get pregnant... It may take a month or so but you will, I know a lot of women who do this...



answers from Dallas on

I agree that while you are nursing you really can't track or try to plan out when you will conceive, especially since you haven't started your period again. I think your options are to just let things happen as you continue nursing (you will eventually start ovulating again) or to wean. Even once you wean, it can take a while for things to get going again -once i finally stopped nursing, it was right at 2 months before I got my first period, and then it took a couple more months for them to get more regular.



answers from Dallas on

I breastfed exclusively all 3 of my kids and with each got my period back at exactly 6 weeks post-partum!! I nursed my 3rd child for over 2 years - so breastfeeding does NOT stop your periods and even if you aren't having periods you can still be ovulating!!



answers from Dallas on

Honestly I have TONS of friends who got pregnant while breastfeeding and not on purpose. It's not difficult, and it almost seems easier. You aren't going to be able to track anything though. It's not true that you have to wait until you have your first period. I don't know about all of my friends, but I do know that several of them had not started their cycles yet before getting pregnant while breastfeeding. BTW breastfeeding is not at all any kind of form of birth control, and most women do eventually start their cycles while breastfeeding unlike what PP said.

Don't stress about it, though. That won't help anything. Just remember that you can't keep track of anything right now, and you don't really have a menstrual schedule yet. It takes a while for that to get back going like it did before. . .and that is if it gets back to a normal schedule.

Good luck mama!


answers from Dallas on

Hi M.,

You will have to get your first cycle before being able to get pregnant. Your body still has not had a cycle because of the BF. Like the other post, I also DO get my period while strictly BF with all of my children so I have to take BC pills or I will get pregnant again. It's very rare to have a period while nursing which is why it's such a good form of BC. In fact I remember reading that only 5% of women will have regular cycles while nursing and those are the ones that need to take BC but again, it's very rare so you will most likely have to completely stop nursing before you can really "try" for a baby again.
If you're already down to two nursings a day then it shouldn't take long before she's completely weaned and your body will be ready.
Take care and good luck to you!

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