I saw a lot of comments about this on the wall so I though I would start a discussion.
My cycle always returned 4 weeks after things settled down for both of my kids even though I was nursing! :-( I have always been jealous of those that get any amount of break from their cycles!
I can't remember exactly now but generally breastfeeding did hold off my cycles (and fertility) for a nice long time. I think that was all I used to space the first two about 2 years apart. And I was very fertile when cycles were going. There is a 6 year break in between 2 and 3 due to reluctant dh and I used NFP (whole deal, charting cycles, temp and mucus). Let's see, I had a stillbirth on 4 and I think it would have been just about 2 years again due to breastfeeding. I am not sure what I did or what happened on 5th pregnancy. We didn't really plan it although we very much wanted a 4th child (once dh got over reluctance, he was good to go). And he was my least breastfed baby. Had a bit of supplementing from the start after week in neonatal (though bulk of first 6 months was breast) and he weaned the earliest at 11months. The others were all measured in years. I am not allowed to say how long for first two but let's just say it was way past the cultural norm. I have at least a decade of "nursing years." :-)
If you want to use breastfeeding to space pregnancies, definitely read "Breastfeeding and Natural Child Spacing" by Sheila Kippley. She lays out some rules for keeping your fertility at bay and explains the physiological reasons that breastfeeding supresses fertility.
Personally, I experienced amenorrhea for 11.5 months after DS1 was born. DS2 is just a few weeks old, so we'll see how it goes!
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