Ashley Graham on why she stopped nursing twins: ‘Like, that’s a lot of work’

Ashley Graham is mother to three sons: Isaac, two, and twins Roman and Malachi, one. Ashley shares a lot on Instagram, including changing diapers on dirty store floors and showing her stretchmarks. She’s also shown herself nursing, only there aren’t many of those anymore because Ashley has given that up. When she appeared on The Daily Show, guest host Chelsea Handler praised Ashely for her breastfeeding shots and pumping breast milk for her sons. Ashley corrected Chelsea saying she was finished breastfeeding because with twins, it was just too much.

As a mother of three, Ashley Graham is over people telling moms how to feed their kids.

Though the 35-year-old supermodel has shared multiple breastfeeding photos on Instagram, she doesn’t believe in a one-size-fits-all approach to parenting. During Graham’s recent appearance on The Daily Show, host Chelsea Handler praised her for “normalizing” breastfeeding on social media, saying, “You have your boobs out, you’re constantly pumping, feeding these kids,” before correcting herself and saying, “not pumping.”

However, Graham chimed in, saying, “It’s all of the above.” After welcoming her first child—a baby boy named Isaac—with Justin Ervin in February 2021, Graham thought breastfeeding was the only “right way” to feed her child. That changed after she gave birth to her twins, Roman and Malachi, in January 2022. “I was like, ‘I’m not doing this,’” she said. “‘This is not working here. Both of you want both of these? Like, that’s a lot of work.’ So I stopped breastfeeding when they were five months and I gave them the best formula that I could find in America.”

[From Glamour]

I’ve heard nursing twins is never-ending. Once one finishes, the other wants on. I hated breastfeeding my singles so I’m sure I wouldn’t have lasted as long as Ashley did if I’d had two at one time. I respect her for correcting the information on The Daily Show like she did. She’s going to get blowback from this, and she could have let Chelsea praise her and not said anything. Lie by omission, yes, but not as egregious. But she didn’t. Ashley said what I believe and what I am sure some other breastfeeding moms have felt, that it’s hard and exhausting. That is not a universal truth. There are women who love breastfeeding and I love that for them. Breastfeeding is beautiful and I wish that for everyone who does it. Post your shots, sing its praises, keep going – do you! But for anyone about to start this journey, just know that it is not the same for everyone. So do what’s right for you and your baby. Ask your doctor/doula or therapist what you should do, not TikTok or Facebook. And don’t worry if you feel differently about it than others, fed is best.

Photo credit: Cover Images and Instagram

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35 Responses to “Ashley Graham on why she stopped nursing twins: ‘Like, that’s a lot of work’”

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  1. Lady Baden-Baden says:

    Amen. Breasfeeding twins was SO tough. At first, I would literally never get a break – when one finshed, the other needed to latch on and so-on. I was zombified milking machine. But even after I’d mastered tandem feeding, I struggled to produce enough milk to statisfy them both. I started mix- feeding (breast plus formula top-ups) pretty early on and then, like Ashley, gave up breast-feeding entirely around 5 months. Even with the top-ups it was exhausting and I was a much better mother after switching to just formula – although I got a lot of judgemental feedback for giving up breast feeding, which I’m sure Ashley will get x a million. I hope she can stay strong and ignore it. As you say Hecate – fed is best. And a sane, healthy parent is important too! Do whatever works for you.

  2. SomeChick says:

    twins… and three in diapers at once! oof. that’s a lot.

    • Erin says:

      I had this, actually I had two toddlers and then had my surprise twins so yeah. I thought I was going to be super woman and BF the twins and within a week I was done, one wouldn’t latch properly and it felt like razor blades the entire time so they got the bottle first. I nursed the other one for a couple more weeks but it just got to be too much and I needed someone else to be able to feed them with everything else we had going on (moving, two toddlers). I was super disappointed in myself at first but then I realized I needed to just concentrate on getting through each day with newborn twins.

      • clarabelle says:

        Razor blades. It amazes me that that is the exact kind of pain I experienced while trying to breast feed my first one. I was never prepared for that, and prolly wouldn’t have believed it if I had been told or read about it. It eventually got better but I was really shocked at the exquisite and surprising pain. (Oh, and it felt like an electrical shock too.)

      • Beana says:

        Thank you for calling it razor blades! That’s exactly what it felt like. Every. Time. And I felt so inadequate and crazy that no one got it.

    • NotSoSocialB says:

      That was me, too. Three under three. It’s mostly a blur!

      • Erin says:

        Yep, the first year of the twins lives I really don’t remember much which makes me sad. I look at pics and am like, I don’t remember that at all.

  3. The Old Chick says:

    She’s also back working. 5 mo seems really good and no one gets to decide for another mother.

  4. Ine says:

    I’m currently breastfeeding a 5 month old. It’s beautiful, but also incredibly tiring. I have a three year old, and having two very young children means juggling most of the time… I work teaching online, so my “office” is my home. We are in summer now (I’m from Argentina) which means teaching with both the baby and a very bored (and highly energetic) toddler. I don’t understand mothers who frown upon others that choose a different path. Like… Go outside, enjoy sunshine, eat chocolate, have fun… In Messi’s words: “qué mirá’? Andá pallá, bobo” 🤣

  5. Yup, Me says:

    I’ve LOVED breastfeeding my babies and did an extended nursing schedule both times (2.5 years with one and going on 2 years with the second), but it was also incredibly easy for all of us. They both latched well from birth, my boobs handled things well, my life/work situations accommodated it both times, and it was (mostly) free. (There’s a cost to mom and body – always). Plus, I like sticking a kid on a boob more than I like washing bottles or prepping formula.

    That said – if I had twins, I’m sure I would’ve stopped nursing much earlier. Even with just one baby at a time, there have been times where I am so touched out and exhausted and over stimulated that I just need my body to myself. I couldn’t imagine a whole additional baby on me.

  6. Carrot says:

    Can we please, in this modern time of seeing each other as humans, stop congratulating or shaming people for however they do or don’t do breast-feeding?

    • ama1977 says:

      Hard agree. I think I say this on every new mom/feeding thread.

      I tried with my first because I thought it was a must if I was going to be a good mom, and I wanted to be a good mom! It’s HARD. I was bad at it. He was bad at it. I cried. He cried. I had PPD. I was getting no sleep. My husband (who is adopted and was formula-fed in the ’70’s) said, “let’s just try the formula samples the hospital gave us.” We did. He ate. He slept. I still cried and had PPD, but the baby was fed and happy. And now he’s a 15 year old, taller than me, smart as a whip, cross-country athlete, and eating me out of house and home.

      And then his sister, who is 5 years younger, was born and latched in the delivery room. Nursed like a champ until she was a year, and I was DONE. And she is also strong, smart, healthy, amazing, and wonderful.

      Fed is best. Period, the end.

  7. lawyercat says:

    I did two months of exclusive pumping hell with my first (I got readmitted 3 days after coming home for a week with an awful wound infection and had to dump everything due to the meds).

    This time, I said no. I did two weeks. For me I had almost PTSD from my last experience and I matter as a mom! I think that’s the only rule other than fed is best . Moms matter. I have friends who loved it, and I’m thrilled for them.

    • Alice says:

      Yup. I never breastfed for multiple reasons, both physical and non. Every woman has the right to choose what is best for her, too.

  8. nutella toast says:

    I had breast tumors removed in my early 20s and the removal cut my ducts – my kid was losing weight scary fast because I could never produce more than 1/2 ounce from one and 2 ounces (tops) from the other. I also had a post emergency C-section infection that ended even the meager amount I was able to produce. I had STRANGERS come for me about using formula when he was really young and it took everything in me not to lose my crap. One literally confronted me in the hospital lobby – “Breast is best!”. If you can and want to breastfeed, good for you. Never (and I mean never) tell an exhausted Mom that their kid will have worse immunity (my 12 year old almost never gets sick), won’t be as smart (he has gotten straight A’s for two years running) or will be stunted in some way – I cried and cried and cried worrying that I was hurting him and there was nothing I could do about it. That’s one mommy terrorizing and bullying another, and it’s unnecessary. Thank you for coming to my PTSD Ted Talk without enough coffee.

    • L says:

      Sorry to hear about judgemental moms criticising you out of the blue. Agree with you 100000% that nobody, I mean NOBODY, should be telling a mum what to do.

    • Throdster says:

      Louder for the people in the back! Also, just because one breastfeeding journey was blissfully easy, doesn’t mean they all are. My eldest was SO EASY to feed (I also had only one baby to deal with), that I nursed him for a year+ and felt so smug about it. Two and a half years later, my second came along, I tried to nurse, we both struggled, and she did not gain weight- it was terrifying. Formula is a GOD SEND, but I still felt all that horrible “breast is best” guilt– mostly from other moms. I’m so grateful for the perspective of my mom and her boomer friends who reminded me that as an eighties baby, I was 100% formula fed, am extremely healthy, and I went to Princeton. So… like… let’s all chill.

    • Alice says:

      I had nurse(!) trying to shame me but I put them to sit down really quickly. Had they tried again, I’d had reported them and they knew it.

  9. Cherbear says:

    In the way olden days, we would all just have sisters and aunts and cousins help breast-feed the babies when we couldn’t. That’s what formula is today – the modern day wet nurse/lactating family member/ tribe member.

    Breast-feeding is hard for some and easy for others. That’s why we used to live in a big village, and all do it together as women.

    However it gets done – fed babies are good babies with good mommies.

    • @poppedbubble says:


    • madameX says:

      Yep. And infants that were not lucky enough to have wetnurses/lactating family available? They died.

      One of the the things that blows my mind is that so much of the conversation about the best way to birth/feed infants completely ignores that we are among the first generations in human history who [mostly] don’t routinely bury our babies and laboring mothers.
      If breastfeeding doesn’t work out for us again in two months when my second is due, I’ll either pump or formula feed again and I’ll be so deeply grateful that I live in the 21st century when those options are accessible.

      (To be clear, not trying to dispute your point, @Cherbear. Mostly just venting.)

  10. Eowyn says:

    I’m from Canada. My kids are young adults. We hadn’t messed up public health care that much back then. 20-sone years ago I had a full year maternity leave (60% of salary/same as employment insurance?) and midwifery care (transferred to ObGyn for delivery and back to midwife for postpartum) midwives do home deliveries for women who want them and have no contraindications. They do home visits for mom and baby care in first weeks after delivery. They teach you how to breastfeed. They taught my then husband how to correct the baby’s latch when I was too tired to notice!
    Only talk to me about breastfeeding when this much support exists for moms and babies.

  11. NotSoSocialB says:

    I agree! Our daughter was a couple months from three when our twins arrived. I nursed her for over two years, but could only nurse the boys for three months. I just couldn’t keep up, and once you start supplementing, it only gets harder and sadder when you *can’t* keep your volume up adequately.

  12. Malificent says:

    Breastfeeding is often presented as all or nothing. But I was lucky enough to have a kid who wasn’t super particular, so I did both.

    I struggled to produce enough milk when I started back at work when he was 3 months. Even a decent quality pump is not the real thing. Then when my son was 5 months, I had an emergency appendectomy. Even though i pumped and dumped in the hospital, my body was not interested in milk production.

    After a lot of effort, i eventually got partial production back, and my son had a mix of formula and breastfeeding to 20 months. I stopped pumping at work at a year, and just let my milk gradually go down. Later it was more about being part of our snuggle time after being apart all day.

    But i was lucky enough to have a kid who would switch between breast and bottle as well as breast milk and formula. A lot of babies are more particular and our combo approach wouldn’t work.

  13. Kay says:

    I love that she is so candid. Breastfeeding was the best and worst thing I did. The highs are so high, but the lows are so low. Knowing when to tap out so that it ends on a high note (which may be 2 weeks, or may be 2+ years) is harder than it seems, so I love that she is discussing it publicly. I also love that she’s working with Bobbie…their subscription model was a godsend during the shortage, and it’s a great female-led company that deserves more praise for doing things right in a notoriously shady industry.

  14. FHMom says:

    What? No baby photos? I came to see the babies. Mothers are so judged. Fed is best. Period.

  15. AnneL says:

    She did what was right for her and her family. And she nursed twins for five months? That’s something. They will definitely benefit from that. She did what she could.

    I went back to work after the third month both times. Pumps never worked for me (they weren’t as good then, maybe), so if I wanted to express I ended up having to milk myself like a cow. It was too much. I would have liked to have kept nursing, since it was free and fairly easy, at least with my first. But it wasn’t in the cards and I didn’t feel guilty about it.

    My sister-in-law is a pediatrician and she didn’t nurse any of her three kids. At all. I’m not sure why. Some explanation was given with the first one and I just accepted it, because it’s not my business. And they’re all absolutely fine, healthy and bright.

  16. Elsa says:

    Fed is best. I hated breastfeeding and quit after 6 weeks and didn’t do it all with my second. But I don’t see the need to post photos of yourself breastfeeding. You don’t post photos of you bottle feeding the baby. You post photos of the babies face etc. Breastfeeding is no more “beautiful” than bottle feeding.

  17. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    You ladies are awesome. We’ve come a long way.

  18. Betcha says:

    They’re her breasts. She can do whatever is best for her and her babies. FYI, Whats best for mom is best for baby.
    Breastfeeding has become another shame tactic for women.

  19. Lucy says:

    Came here to say FED IS BEST. I EBF both my babies, one was more challenging than the other, but overall we had a good experience. And I would never want someone else to feel bad or make a decision for themselves based on what worked for me. FED IS BEST

  20. Mandy says:

    I’m breastfeeding my second singleton and ya it’s so much work, can’t imagine two! I’m glad I can do it but it’s hard to have no autonomy and boobs out all the time. I know it’s temporary but no shame is stopping either.

  21. StrawberryBlonde says:

    I tried for 1 week. But he was so jaundiced and losing weight and I wasn’t producing much. I hated pumping. I felt so inadequate. I cried and cried. My husband said he would support me in whatever I wanted. I said we had to do formula. Once we went onto formula we never looked back. Our son got pink and plump and happy. My DH and I were able to share feedings. I was able to go on meds for my PPD. It was one of our best decisions, for us. Luckily I only felt a little bit of judgment from other people. My son is now nearly 4 years old and is tall, smart and kind. I was a 1982 baby who was also exclusively formula fed and turned out just fine as well.