Is Breastfeeding Interfering with Conceiving?


My husband and I started having children when I was 29 years old. It was very easy to conceive with all four of our children. We conceived the first try with all but our first in which we conceived the second try. Our last child was born when I was 38. I am now 40 and we would love to have one more child, but we have been trying to conceive for seven months now with no luck. I am still breastfeeding my two- year-old about three times a day for about 10 to 15 minutes each time.
Do you think I am not conceiving because of the breastfeeding or because of my age? I became pregnant with my last child while still breastfeeding. I am very confused and frustrated. What is your advice to me? It is difficult for me to get a doctor’s advice because I am living in another country where medical practices are not so advanced. Thank you so much for your help.



Last Updated: May 4, 2022
Dear Margaret,

A couple trying to achieve a pregnancy for seven months without success would signal that they are not using the most fertile time of the cycle or the woman is not ovulating every cycle. Since you didn’t mention charting or cycling I am assuming that you don’t have that important information.

Every pregnancy is different and even if you became pregnant while still weaning your last child you should not expect the same this time. As the demand for suckling becomes less the hormones lift the suppression of ovulation. In a good fertile cycle the hormone estrogen must be present in adequate amounts before ovulation, for proliferation of the uterine lining and cervical mucus production. It is critical for supporting implantation that adequate levels of progesterone are present following ovulation. Making observations and charting your menstrual cycle will give you good information on how well this process occurs. As a woman ages these functions drop off in a gradual manner and so you may have less chance to conceive. Just remember you only need one good ovulatory cycle and by charting you will know when that best time to conceive occurs.

There are teachers in California listed on our web site that can instruct you in making observations and charting your menstrual cycle, and you can identify in the Professional Directory those that provide assistance long distance.

To alleviate any confusion or frustration take advantage of learning a Natural Family Planning method by a certified teacher.

Best wishes for a healthy pregnancy.

Angie Frausto

Answered By:

Angie Frausto

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