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Oversupply and weaning of 4 year old ?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hi!  It's been awhile since I've been on Mothering and I'm back with a problem.  I have been nursing for 8 years straight (thanks to you folks here who encouraged me to keep my non solid eaters on my milk).  My youngest turned four a few months ago and still nurses at night and in the morning.  She's eating fine now and will eat soup if she's too gaggy to eat solids.  The past few months I've been asking her to stop after breastfeeding for 10 - 20 seconds (she counts to 10 slowly and self regulates).  I thought my milk would slow down but my breasts hurt and are leaking.  I've tried cabbage leaves.  I've always had a ton of milk (couldn't put arms down for golf ball sized milk lump in armpit BEFORE I delivered).  I've been letting her nurse a little longer at night just so I can sleep......which I know makes it worse but I don't know what to do.  Advice?

Edited by MommaShark - 11/7/13 at 11:19am
post #2 of 7
I'm sorry you haven't received a response yet and that I don't have any experience to share. I am bumping this up for more attention! Any mamas out there with some experience?
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

thanks!  I think it will just be a verrrrry gradual process and that I need to be patient.  

post #4 of 7
Try hand expressing, just enough to prevent engorgement, and so you can sleep. I found it got worse overnight.
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

thanks!  I'll give it a go!

post #6 of 7

I'm not sure if your still checking this thread, but here's my experience. My LO also just turned 4 and even refused to consider "having a birthday" because I had been preparing him to wean and "stop having nursies" when he turned 4. So needless to say it's not going smoothly here either. I'm trying to get him to give up nursing in the morning, since getting him up and going for preschool is an issue.  But that also opens a whole can of worms for him having a meltdown because I refused. I try to be out of bed and up and dressed before him (since nursing in bed is his favorite). So nursies are still happening on the weekend :o.


I'm not leaking (although I have always had a very strong let down and have dealt with ongoing leaking). For myself, nursing for even 10 or 15 seconds would cause a let down. Have you considered trying to end one nursing session? I get you on the night nursing, it would be uncomfortable to let that one go first. My first LO weaned just prior to turning four and that was a little easier because I was pregnant at the time and I'm not sure how strong my supply was. With my first we weaned once side at a time because my breasts were so painful, first the left (always less milk supply) and then the right (my gorged side). I still ended up with a minor plugged duct on the right side when we stopped.

post #7 of 7


I am also nursing a 4 year-old. My daughter planned to wean when she turned 4 but that plan lasted less than a day :) She is my last, and I have wanted her to lead her weaning, but at this point, I am feeling like I need to be done. I have nursed consistently for almost 7 years now (my son will be 7 in March and I tandemmed with him when I had my daughter until I had to stop with him). I am 44. Hormonally, my body is so confused! I keep thinking re: my breasts, weight fluctuations, moods...."is this pre-menopause? PMS? nursing?" Not many women can consider all of those things in one breath :) I am just ready to move on in my relationship with my daughter. My brother just had his first child and now my LO is thinking she and her baby cousin have nursing in common. ACK! 


I guess I, as well, don't have much advice, only that gradually cutting down and distracting from nursings seems to be working. We figured out a way to keep a cup of cow's milk cool (in a hotel plastic ice bucket!) at night by our bed for her. She also thought it was pretty neat to have the ice bucket. It worked last night - she was OK not nursing to sleep, and I think I just nursed her once during the night. Then in the morning, I nursed her pretty full on (both sides a couple of times) and then we got up.


Now my daughter thinks she will stop nursing when she's 5. (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) I just can't imagine that, and I know that is not right for me! So I guess I need to think a little more proactively here about moving towards weaning completely.


Are you still having problems with oversupply, MommaShark, at this point? It's been about 5 weeks since you first posted. I am guessing that your body is adjusting slowly.


Thank you, mamas of 4 yo nursers for being OUT THERE for me.

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