Originally Posted by clothcrazymom
I remember reading something that one of the moms who's child weaned at around 7 posted about not understanding how someone can consider themselves to CLW when they haven't been there yet. I found it very interesting because she was talking about her own experiences and how she thought it would be a certain way and it wasn't.
I think this was probably me, though I'm not sure I understand your second part re: how I thought it would be a certain way (maybe it wasn't me?). I do think that child-led weaning is exactly that, weaning that is child-led. No stretch of the word "wean", just the complete cessation of nursing. I understand what others mean when they say that once the child starts solids the "weaning" has started, therefore the entire length of breastfeeding from-late-infancy-on is considered a weaning process. I have always seen child-led-weaning in a very simple way, the ultimate decision to stop breastfeeding is made by the child. Once a child reaches a certain age, say 4, then the mother usually knows whether they are in it for the long haul (child-led weaning) or not. Though other in-tune well-informed mothers know from the get-go that they will let their child wean when they are ready regardless of age. Our children show us what is right for them. I honestly didn't even know there was a term child-led weaning until my daughter was well past 5, then the phrase just seemed to fit what we were doing, I didn't make what we were doing fit the phrase, KWIM? It is a term, IMHO, that helps us find one another for support and kinship, definitely not to one-up anyone nor compete with anyone for who can go the longest, the strictest to the term, etc. My daughter simply nursed til the outer edges of Katherine Dettwyler's statistics (though I believe even that is a little short). I know there are others like us, here at MDC too, and I so wish that more mothers would be brave and trusting enough to let their children nurse as long as they wanted.
I was one of those mothers who night-weaned dd when she was a young toddler, before she was ready. I also introduced solids at 6 months, dr. said to and she wanted to...this was all before I had any support. I fit a lot of the criteria that others have said are not CLW, yet my daughter continued to nurse until age 7. I even did don't offer, don't refuse when she passed 4yrs. Would I recommend others follow in those same footsteps? No way, especially if it leads to early weaning for their child. I would
recommend that every mother stop listening to society's harmful ignorance and start listening to their children. When it all boils down to it, dd did (and still does) come first and foremost. Getting all caught up in advice and "THE right way to do it" is dangerous for everyone's well-being.
Other people believe CLW is letting the child completely lead the way through the nursing relationship. I think that's fine. I do have a different view on it, and that's okay too. I would consider it child-led breastfeeding
(how's that for another term to add to the pot?
). Both views take the child's well-being into account and place a high value of, and level of trust on, the child and I think that's wonderful. I consider us to have practiced child-led weaning but I have no problem with anyone who disagrees with me due to their own ideals. It's okay. IMO I wouldn't consider any of us (early weaning, late weaning, in-between weaning) against one another, or one-upping each other, or criticizing our differences. We simply have different views on it. Diversity is healthy.
(Not sure if that clarified anything or if I just added another chapter to my wordy novel. It's late and I'm so tired. :yawning: )