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Do you ever say "No"?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi there, I never have time to post much but I read when I can and have a couple of questions today.

Just a little background: my ds is almost 16 months. During the day he drinks whole milk at daycare. All other times we nurse on cue, which generally includes mornings upon waking, afternoons when we get home from dc, evenings, before bed, and oftentimes in the middle of the night, and then of course whenever on weekends.

I'm wondering if there are times that you ever say no to your dc nursing. I (almost...keep reading) never do to ds. There are times when I distract him long enough to get to a place where we can nurse, but I always nurse him when he wants. But off and on I have a problem when I pick him up at dc. Most days he's happy enough to wait until we get home, but some days (like yesterday) he absolutely wants to nurse and it turns into a nightmare for both of us (him screaming, crying, falling out, me wanting to cry, feeling like I'm failing him, having my heart torn out because I feel like it would be a simple problem to fix--just nurse him--but I don't feel free to do that in the situation).

I do not really feel free to nurse him at dc (it's 5:00, everyone's there to pick up, dcp discourages it), nor do I actually want to nurse him at daycare....I prefer to wait 'til home then we can relax and nurse at our leisure and not have to worry about being rushed, etc.

But am I doing the right thing in saying "no" to him in that situation? My dcp thinks I am, and that he has to learn that "he can't always have what he wants" but to me wanting to nurse is different than wanting something that is innappropriate, where I might deal with a "tantrum" differently. It tears my heart out, though, to hear him scream when I know all he wants is to nurse (and he doesn't understand because this is the only situation I say no to him in).

Am I "giving in" if I nurse him under these circumstances? Am I raising a monster that will eventually fall out and throw a temper tantrum in the supermarket in order to get something he wants because he knows mommy will give in? I don't equate these two situations, but my dcp (and my s.o. sometimes) do, and I feel like I'm fumbling around right now about to make a bad decision because I don't know anyone IRL who thinks about parenting exactly the same way I do, so I really don't know if I'm off the mark here or if I need to stick to my guns and what my gut is telling me, which is to respond to ds's needs, and if needing to nurse before we leave daycare is it, then so be it, I'll fight my battle with my dcp, not him.

This turned out a lot longer than I thought it would.....thanks for reading and I would really appreciate any insight, comments, or personal experience anyone has. Thanks!
post #2 of 7
I found as my child grew, so did her ability to hear no sometimes. It was a case by case thing, a lesson in living in the moment.

But when it forced on you by value judgements of others...that's no fun.

Human milk is designed to make kids feel better. Soothing hormones, pain relievers etc are in it. If they are hungry or their blood sugar is down it picks them up. (My much older son is always STARVING at the end of a school day because it's been hours since lunch....and his sunny personality morphs into something ugly til we can get that blood sugar back up with a snack.) It is simply a myth that nursing an upset or tired child is creating a monster. It's also a valuable way to connect with mom at the end of a long day.

If YOU don't want to nurse until your home that is your right. But that's too bad if ill informed people, basing their opinions on inaccurate cultural myths about "spoiling" are making you feel guilty if you DO want to nurse.

but to me wanting to nurse is different than wanting something that is innappropriate
I totally agree with you!!!!!

Off my soapbox now.
post #3 of 7
OK it's me again

According to Elizabeth N. Baldwin, Esq. in "Extended Breastfeeding and the Law":
"Breastfeeding is a warm and loving way to meet the needs of toddlers and young children.
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks Momtwice. The more I think about it, the more I realize that I am feeling bad about saying "no" to him because I am feeling pressured to say "no" by others when I really don't feel like saying "no" is necessarily the right thing to do. Ugh, I know this is going to come to a head soon. Dcp and I have already discussed having a meeting to discuss "discipline" issues and consistency among us. I'm realizing that I'm going to really need to do some research and go armed with knowledge so that I can stand up for myself. ugh....but now I'm getting off topic on my own thread...oops.
post #5 of 7
Yes, I have. There are times when it's not convenient or I'm just touched out. Usually when she has just nursed or when a scheduled session (ie: naptime) is coming up soon or when I'm right in the middle of something I don't want to leave if I can help it.

I wouldn't listen to any outside sources, honestly. Nurse your dc when you are comfortable and able. If it's not a good time for you and he's able to wait I don't see why you can't tell him you'll nurse when you get home, or in a few minutes, or whatever the case may be. I think you'll "know" when he really needs to nurse or when it's a tantrum. I think he's too young for it to be just a tantrum right now. I don't see anything wrong with nursing him for just a few minutes under the circumstances you describe. Would your dcp have an issue with you popping a pacifier or a bottle in his mouth to calm him? Or is it just nursing that's the problem? Regardless, if your heart is telling you to nurse him I'd go with that.

People love to play the manipulation card as much as the habit card. If your dc is being manipulative you will know it. You're his mother and you know him best. It sounds to me like he does need to nurse at those times. He hasn't seen you for awhile and probably wants reconnect. Perhaps you could nurse him in the car if it would make you more comfortable - although I'd just nurse right there in the dcare. They can wait a minute.

I also want to tell you that if you really don't want to nurse at the daycare than don't. It's okay. Perhaps telling your ds when you drop him off that you will nurse as soon as you get home it'll help him.

I guess the point is to do what you need to do. You're not a horrible mother if you say no. You're not giving into a tantrum if you say yes. Just do what you need to do and try not to sweat it. I don't even think you always have to choose one or the other in that situation. Do whatever you have to do at the time, whatever feels right to you. I hope this all makes some sense! :LOL
post #6 of 7
I've said "no" to plenty of nursing requests- often for no other reason than "I don't feel like nursing right now." I can't tell you when I started doing this or how often I was saying "no" at what ages.

There is nothing wrong with the simple act of refusal- the problem I'm hearing here is that you feel pressured into refusing when you don't really want to. I see no reason why you shouldn't be allowed to nurse him when you pick him up- though I'd suggest a quick nursing at daycare followed by a longer, more relaxing session at home. Would nursing in the car outside daycare be practical?
post #7 of 7
I find when I've been away from DD for several hours, she is so excited to see me home & always asks for "milkies, please mama?" right away. Your babe is probably wanting to nurse right away for emotional reasons. (I'm also 'hearing' you say that you feel like you shouldn't say no) If dc really has a problem with it- I would definately nurse in the car. We do that if we've been, say, in the grocery store & she really needs to nurse- I'll tell her to wait until we get to the van & then have "the milk".
She's usually happy with that.
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