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Do you speak up or bite your lip when people bash extended BF? - Page 2

post #21 of 34

everybody knows that i nurse the almost 2 year old. b/c they see me doing it.


Edited by ElliesMomma - 5/22/11 at 9:58pm
post #22 of 34

I at least try to not leave the possibility open for people to think I agree with their bashing. I have said things like "oh, good for her, it's so healthy for the mom and child to nurse" when someone expects me to bash the mom with them.

 

When supporting breastfeeding, I avoid using "baby" and say things about how it is so good for the child.

 

I try to neither hide nor forced-bringing-up-for-the-sake-of-bringing-it-up the fact that I'm still nursing my 23 month old. For example, I took a trip recently and was pregnant but not ready to share the pregnancy news with traveling companions. I justified my ridiculously HUGE appetite on the fact that I was nursing, and walking so much during tours of the city, when in fact a large part of it was pregnancy-related. "Nursing mom's gotta eat!" I would smile as I finished off 3rds and 4ths of dinner!

 

It IS normal, so whenever possible I just talk about it like it's normal. If you expect harsh criticism, don't feel bad if you don't want to give specific information about yourself though. It's your responsibility to do what's best for your child, not to single-handedly change the culture at the expense of your dignity in the workplace or wherever people are bashing.

post #23 of 34

i admit, i have my own personal hang-ups with much older nurslings, but, i always make a comment suggesting we not gossip about other people's personal lives, and gently suggest it's not really that strange. 

 

anyway, i find that people tend to respond well to my approach... or at least back off a bit. most of the time, i find that people just weren't sure HOW to react, so they brought up the topic in an incredulous way. once you let them lightly know that you're not up for bashing whatever it is, they sometimes are even open to actually discussing the issue. i've had great conversations about extended breastfeeding... i happily admit what seems strange to me, but we can talk about why some people might do things differently, and whether or not it's really that wrong or weird after all. 

post #24 of 34

I actually love taking the opportunity to tell people that humans are technically considered infants until they are 7 years old, so a nursing 2, 3, 4, 5 year old is still a baby.  I also love reminding them that nursing for 5 or even 8 years of an 80 year long life is a blip on the map.

 

I just told a mom that yesterday, actually.  She is still nursing her 13 month old and told me it's nice to see another mom nursing her 15 month old.  When I said the blip thing (I just said nursing 2, 3, or 4 years), she actually looked a little turned off.  Oh, well. 

 

I don't like the term "breastfeeding" and I really don't like the term "extended breastfeeding".  Language has a huge impact on how we frame things in our minds and cultures.  I nurse my babies.  And, will through their 3rd birthdays.  I've never gone beyond 3 yo and can't imagine myself nursing anyone older than 4 yo.  But, that's my choice to make.  I think women should be encouraged to nurse as long as they (and the child) want to and also women should be encouraged to understand childhood development so that they can truly understand the choices they're making. 

post #25 of 34

I don't think anyone's ever said anything to me other than when talking about me. I suppose they will someday when my youngest weans at last! I would just say "I believe a woman should nurse for as long, or as short, a time as she wants to. After all, WHO says 2 years and up is great for the kid's immune system. I'm sure when she wants to stop, she'll stop."

 


Edited by EviesMom - 5/24/11 at 10:47pm
post #26 of 34

I've always spoken out anytime some makes a negative comment about it. My DD turns 4 yrs this Fall and she's still nursing. To me, it's normal, so I tell people that. I've made polite comments and fiery comments depending on my mood at the time. I've had family and friends comment on it and at one point said, "Until you have the facts right, don't comment." Or at a work meeting, I told my manager and coworkers I couldn't use the new products on clients because they're not safe for nursing mothers, one woman said, "How old is your daughter again?" Me- "She's almost 4." A few of them looked at me wide-eyed, including the woman who asked the question. She said, "I breastfed my son and quit when he was 9 months. Breastfeeding any long is disgusting and perverted." And I laughed and said calmly, "That's what many Americans believe, but look at natural weaning habits of other cultures across the world." She didn't have much to say after that... to me, if I know the truth, I want as many people to be aware of these facts as possible. I've had many encounters like that throughout our bf'ing relationship. So be it. I'm tired of people snickering and commenting on what they think is right out of ignorance and judgement.

 

If we aren't the ones speaking out against these misconceptions, who will? If we want the best for our children and grandchildren, isn't it our responsibility as their caregivers to make these facts known to the general public? This is no time to be shy, this is a time to speak loudly and proudly about the natural course of nursing a human child. It's simple. I will always speak up, my daughter learns from me and I want her to know she has the right and the responsibility to assist others in knowing the truth and not succumbing to the hype of the masses- so we can finally push passed the paradigm of misinformation and fear-mongering... it is OUR responsibility to share our knowledge with others... that's how we evolve as a species, right?

post #27 of 34

I speak up.  Every time.  And I've never nursed an older child.  I weaned my first waaay too early due to lack of knowledge and support, and my baby is only 10 months old.  But whenever I hear someone say anything negative about bfing, no matter what the age, I always defend the practice.  Extended nursing is the norm in my mind, even if I haven't achieved it, yet.

post #28 of 34

I speak up and if their boat rocks, I don't mind! I like taking rides!

 

Example,

A lady- "OMG, I just saw a woman nursing a toddler, he must have been 2 year old already, how weird!"

 

Me, celebrating, " I just stopped nursing my 4 year old recently! I can't wait to buy a normal bra again. I am waiting for my milk to dry up before I go get them."

 

Lady -" What? 4 year old!??? That's just wrong!"

 

Me- "Nah, in some other countries woman nurse their babies until 5 or 6 sometimes more!"

 

Lady- "Ug, I could not do that , It was so annoying. I stopped at 6 months.."

 

Me- " Congratulations! You are amazing to do that. In this culture it is a very informed momma, and a strong person who goes against the social norm... When I found out these amazing facts about breastfeeding, I couldn't not! I was determined to stop, not because of society's pressure, but when *I* decided ( or my child decided) they were done. I am so happy I followed my instincts"

 

I will give them some amazing facts about breastfeeding that most people don't know.

 

Check out my video I made just for the love of it! I will stand on my soap box , <grin>, and sprinkle as many amazing benefits that I can into the conversation.... :)

 

 

 

post #29 of 34

One of my friends was talking to me just after she had weened her then 16 month old.

During the conversation she mentioned how her and her husband remembered seeing a toddler asking to nurse.

He later told her that he felt a child should be weened before they are able to ask for it with words as in "I want to nurse". and she agreed.

When she said this I felt that saying anything to contradict that would be unsupportive.

She was happy with her decision to ween, and I wanted to show her that I respected her regardless of our different views in this matter.

 

I'm still glad I did not say anything at the time.

I hope that she will have the same respect for me while I'm breastfeeding my child.

She has never said anything negative about my choice, but I haven't mentioned that I plan to keep going till he is ready to give it up :)

post #30 of 34

I'm not afraid to tell other people I still nurse my 18 month old dd and that we have no plans to stop any time soon.  nono02.gif I'm already pretty controversial in a lot of things regarding our dd so my friends kind of got used to it and respect my views. 

 

I think we absolutely should stand up to anybody that bashes extended breastfeeding or breastfeeding in general, for all other moms and future moms that will nurse their babies. I understand some people have a problem with it but hey, if it's too gross for you - don't look. wink1.gif  And I dare anyone to ever tell my child that what we're doing is gross.  FIREdevil.gif  

post #31 of 34

I generally speak up - sometimes to just act surprised, "Of course I'm still nursing," or I'll joke about it, "I'm sure he'll wean by his wedding day." Or my favorite - DD "only" nursed for 18 months, with the emphasis on "only." I have a feeling that this little DS is going to be one of those 4 year olds. And I'm totally fine with it.

post #32 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by princesstutu View Post


I don't like the term "breastfeeding" and I really don't like the term "extended breastfeeding".  Language has a huge impact on how we frame things in our minds and cultures.  I nurse my babies.  And, will through their 3rd birthdays.  I've never gone beyond 3 yo and can't imagine myself nursing anyone older than 4 yo.  But, that's my choice to make.  I think women should be encouraged to nurse as long as they (and the child) want to and also women should be encouraged to understand childhood development so that they can truly understand the choices they're making. 


ITA with this - where I come from we refer to breastfeeding or nursing as feeding the baby - that's it, you would often hear that a mother is going to feed her baby - it actually means breastfeed.  We don't hear it quite so much here where we live now as the english speaking community is fairly USA based so nursing is the more common word.  Where I come from to nurse is to take care of and look after someone when they are ill - so nursing for me is a more difficult word to use!

 

Anyway, when someone commented on me nursing my 8 month old with a very clear amount of shock in her voice i looked at my baby and said but he's so small, he's a baby, that's what he's made to do.  I always speak up when people make silly comments about breastfeeding, whether it be extended or otherwise - it's best to give the correct information and if folk don't like it then at least they've heard about it - maybe they won't be so shocked the next time!

 

post #33 of 34

imagine the looks i get when i tell others that i breastfed until i was 8.5 years old... joy.gif

 

i get the - did you have some kind of medical issues or something type questions, and i am nope i just really enjoyed nursing and it was a very sweet special bond between my mom and i...LOL i wish i could have a camera and take pics of the looks on the mom's faces.

 

then i get the well i sure hope you are not going to let your daughter breastfed that long. and i tell them she is gonna nurse for as long as she chooses to and wants/needs that bond with me, then get into the whole argument of breastfeeding is only for nutrition and there is no benefit to nursing past a certain age that each person wants to create that works for them...

 

i fail to understand how a mom cant see the bonding benefits of nursing a child and the love and comfort it brings to them, to me its a sweet bond and benefit that is for both the mom and child, its a relationship that only a mommy can have with her child and something that is so sweet and loving no matter the age of the child.

 

happy nursing all!

 

tammy

post #34 of 34

Extended breastfeeding is my dirty little secret, sort of, because I know how people think and I know I won't change their minds.  I don't waste my breath.

 

However, I wish those that think extended breastfeeding is weird would shut up when around children.  Please don't make my child or any other child who has benefited from extended breastfeeding feel like some sort of sexual deviant.  How dare you make a child and mother feel like weirdos for doing what is biological and natural..  This is especially despicable since your opinion is not based on biological fact or expert medical opinion.  It's 100% cultural, and because your little gaggle of friends agrees with you doesn't mean you are right.

 

 

If people bash extended breastfeeding in front of my little one, then I will speak up.  So far that hasn't come up, however.

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