I have nursed my four girls (the oldest now 20) who all stopped nursing on their own by 13 months. My SON on the other hand who is 17 months old shows no sign of stopping. He would rather nurse than actually eat food. He'll eat some food but prefers to nurse. My teenagers of course think it is gross for as "old as he is". I am ready for him to be done,but don't have the heart to wean him, until he does it on his own.. any suggestions for gentle weaning at 18 months old :)?
3/8/12 12:59 P
When DS was born, I had a goal of breastfeeding him until one year...on his first birthday, I realised just how little he still was and we kept at it. He finally weaned himself just after his second birthday. I asked him yesterday what he likes better, a bottle or his "mama na;" he preferred the breast :-). Since I am pregnant, we have been talking about how the new baby will have "na," and DS said, "I want na, too!" He then pulled up my shirt, put his mouth around my nipple (without latching), pulled back and giggled and pulled my shirt back down. So cute! (And I was so relived that I won't actually have to nurse my almost-three-year-old!) I agree with what's already been said: nursing is an intimate relationship between mama and baby and should continue for as long as it is mutually satisfying for both. If mama needs to wean for her own sanity, she should be supported in that decision. But, as my LLL leader said the other night: "I've never met a woman who said that she was sad to have stuck it out. But I have met many women who regret weaning before either they or the babies were truly ready."
3/7/12 7:07 A
You did great to go as long as you did. Just remember, breastfeeding is a very intimate relationship - just because the "normal" amount of time has passed, doesn't mean its wrong to not be ready to give it up.
My son is almost 17 months old. I thought I would be weaning at 12 months. Oops? He only nurses one side per session, with only 2-3 nursings across 3-4 days. My husband and mother are the only ones who really know he still nurses, my mom nursed me to 14 months and my brother to 2 yrs, my husband is eager for me to finish weaning. It'll happen as the kidlet is ready, and at least this way, I'm not in any real pain or even discomfort from it.
3/6/12 11:49 A
i think you have done a great job even getting to that mark. He got a great year of all the benefits of breastfeeding and he will do great ;)
2/23/12 4:04 P
Something else to consider. There is no reason baby can't have both nursing and drinking regular milk and drinking out of a sippy cup.
My almost 17mo old gets both nursing and sippy cups of milk - even when I am home/around. I stopped pumping at a year, she was already used to a bottle - as I work, but I did switch her to a sippy cup and milk when away from me.
Anyhow - there is no reason you can't do both - except if you and/or baby don't want to.
2/21/12 10:14 A
And if you need it put down official - the WHO recommeds BFing until 2 years or more. :))
Tandem breastfeeding, co-sleeping, cloth diapering, baby wearing momma. :)
2/17/12 7:24 P
I am still breastfeeding my almost 15 month old and plan to continue. But with my first I had the same attitude nurse for a year. Then I learned their immune system isn't even fully functioning until two. I think also that our culture is off track.
2/15/12 4:46 P
peanutjkb, Great point. The only opinions that matter are yours and your sons.
Careena, before having kids, I also thought it was "strange" that a toddler would breastfeed. Now I'm so for it. You know I heard in some countries only royalty was allowed to breastfeed....interesting.
Morganne March, 2008
2/15/12 3:34 P
The only two opinions that matter are the yours and your sons. All the other people can shove it. You say that your son still wants to nurse, so you just need to figure out what YOU want.
I nursed my son until he was 2.5, he wanted to keep nursing, but I was done. I lost any and all support for bfing (other than dh) when I hit one year. Quite frankly, I don't give a rats behind what my sister, sil, mil or anyone else thinks. Dh's family is very proformula, and I was their first exposure to bfing. They thought I was crazy. My mom is of the 6months is good, a year is ok mentality. So when i told her that my plan was atleast 2 years she looked at me like I had told her I was joining a cult and selling bs to the circus. She was quietly diapproving until 2 years, and then i got twice weekly calls to see how weaning was going. I just gave her a vague answer of, we are working on it.
But bottomline, make sure weaning is what you want, and not just whatcyou are supposed to do.
Tyler Matthew- Natural birth 4/19/09 9lbs1oz
2/15/12 8:33 A
Awww, I feel where you are coming from. My 2nd weined herself at 14 months. I feel so guilty because my first breastfed for about 32 months. So yes, guilt set in that I didn't push my 2nd enough. I kind of let her wein because my milk dried up with this pregnancy.
As for family. I got so much grief for nursing past 12 months, period. The family (and even at times my husband) thought it was to long. Honestly, I think it's just our culture here in the U.S. It's too bad that it's looked at as unacceptable. Especially that there is still benefits for baby and momma after 12 months. I guess my only advice would be to do what you want to do. Try and block negative comments. I ended up ignoring everyone and "secretely nursed" my 2 year old. Of course she only nursed once a day at that time so it was easy to do without anyone knowing. I'm glad I stuck to my guns too. I swear my now almost 4 year old, has such a good immune system. Not to mention, I've reduced my chances of getting breast cancer. (just a little plus). Good luck with whatever you decide. You did great nursing for as long as you did!
Morganne March, 2008
2/14/12 4:59 P
I've been trying to wean my son for the past 3 months. He is almost 14 months old. I said "enough is enough" and got him down to two feedings a day (morning and night). A few days ago, I finally just cut him off. I've nursed him twice in the past 4 days, and I'm glad he's finally eating better and drinking milk from a sippy cup. Now that he's almost completely weaned, I'm having feelings of guilt. I've taken a lot of pressure from everyone to wean him. It doesn't bother me so much, but it does bother me they're not supportive. I'm in school full time, and I'd like the freedom to have him weaned. This guilt has taken wave over me, though, and I'm rethinking if I'm ready to let go. I know he doesn't want to. Anyone have any encouragement, advice, or support to offer?
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