(These questions are answered in order of "urgency", if you will, ha ha!)
A quick recap for those of you new to the blog: Cub, my oldest, was breastfed until ten months (he weaned himself) and Naomi, my youngest (for now!), was breastfed for four months and I chose to wean her to formula then because of a milk allergy.
Okay. This is one of those things where I can only speak from experience and my experience is limited. This question comes from a dear reader who just had her third and she is considering the convenience of one versus the other (I believe she breastfed her other two). While I can confidently say that "Yes! Breastfeeding my first was easy!" I cannot confidently say that breastfeeding a third would be easy (I will soon find out). Also, her third is a boy, and boys are a little harder (typically) to get going. Cub ate for a total of 45 minutes for the first few months. I thought I was some kind of champion because I could claim that "Look! He took forever to eat and I had clogged milk ducts and he had reflux but I DID IT! Breastfeeding all the waaaaay!" until I realized ... he was my first. Of course I had time to dedicate to all of that. With Naomi, she was actually a much easier feeder. She nursed great from day one, a total of ten minutes per side, which was heaven. But she had tummy issues from the get-go and the decision to wean was so, so, so hard, but it made the most sense for all of us. I'll be honest--I'm not a huge fan of formula. I think it's stinky. But I'm so thankful for it. Naomi did great going to formula. With my third, I plan to breastfeed and hope it goes swimmingly all the way through, but I've learned to give myself grace if it doesn't.
So, all of that being said, I think breastfeeding is still "easier". It's easier because it's always with you and, with time, the baby typically becomes more efficient in their eating and the time gets cut way down. And, of course, there's no arguing that it really is the healthiest option. Comparing the two, I think transitioning from having two bottles attached to you to having to prep actual bottles is cumbersome, at first. But, that's comparing the two. I got used to prepping bottles for Naomi the way I got used to breastfeeding Cub. Life goes on. Ultimately, you do what you feel is best for the baby AND for you.
That being said, I will say, Reader, to do whatever will help you keep your sanity. This is just one of those things where having an opinion doesn't really help--we Moms just need to support each other. Set a goal before you wean. Try to breastfeed for a certain length of time, to prove to yourself that you've given it a fair shot (which you already have--I only suggest this because I know you want to breastfeed), and then make your choice.
It won't be a wrong one.
Good luck, friend.
Have a lovely day!