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How old is too old? - Page 3

Poll Results: How old is too old?

This is a multiple choice poll
  • 0% (1)
    Any age is too old, I am anti-breastfeeding
  • 0% (0)
    0-6 months
  • 0% (0)
    6-12 months
  • 1% (8)
    1-2 years
  • 6% (45)
    2-3 years
  • 12% (89)
    3-4 years
  • 21% (152)
    4-5 years
  • 57% (396)
    As long as the child desires, whatever age that may be
691 Total Votes  
post #41 of 172

Your thoughts and comments are welcomed and I think your comments were not "hostile" at all.

Everyone here, I think, truly tries to do what's best for their children and family. I am so proud of everyone here for nursing their kids for so long.


post #42 of 172


I am not parent weaning ds, really, but really want him to be done when he is three and am utilizing distraction and don't ask don't refuse.

You have given your child a gift and in no way are damaging her by ending the nursing relationship!!! Don't feel that way, please. I am sure ds will still be nursing past 3 but the fact that I hope not does not make me not AP enough. Dr. Sears even said so!!

You are fine. I am sure you are a gentle mama and your choice is yours. I doubt many women here think you haven't done enough, especially since you are so open to doing more! You are right, baby steps. Defeating the formula industry will not happen by preaching alone! We all have to fight the power in SO many ways.

Hope this made sense.
post #43 of 172

It made loads of sense. Thanks for your support. I really appreciate it.

post #44 of 172
Precious, I hear you on the "antsy" thing, lol! BTDT (twice). I don't think there is anything wrong with being ready to be done bf at age 2, but I worry when I read you stating that you have decided that her birthday will be "the last day!" Have you, uh, "consulted" her on this When I say I worry, it is not so much for her (tho' it will likely be a difficult transition done so suddenly; more difficult than it would have to be if done more gradually at this age, imo) but for YOU!
Girl, you are in for it. Trying to set an arbitrary date and enforce it unilaterally on such a sensitive and accepted issue is bound to result in a strong backlash by dd! I mean, she has bf her WHOLE LIFE, and all of a sudden, "okay, we're done. No more. You're a big girl now, mommy is tired of it."
JMO, but for both your sakes, allow a wee bit more flexibility on this one; perhaps START the process on bd#2, and gradually reduce to once a day/night, making it the special/only time. After a while, she will be more willing and able to surrender this very important part of your relationship completely, but she will likely resist with all her might if the rug is just yanked out from under her!
No offense intended(just one bf mom to another Best wishes! Kimberly, mom to Forest, 9 (bf for 4 yrs) and Lily, 2(still at it)
post #45 of 172
Raven 1:

Thank you for your concern, sorry, I was never clear on how I was parent weaning. For the last 3 months, we stopped nursing after about 7:00pm until 6:00am, so bascially no night nursing. Then for the last month, we would only nurse once during the day, she would ask for it more than once though throughout the day! So at the end of that month of daily nursing was her birthday (last Saturday), we stopped then. My breasts have had absolutely no problem, no engorement, I'm surprised I still have milk a week later, (I'm not clear when it should dry up). My daughter has had a couple of wicked temper tantrum since stopping bf (not related to being tired or hungry). Prior to stopping bf, she had experienced maybe 2 or 3, so I don't know if it's just terrible twos or bf related. Although Dr. Sears does say he does not see the "normal" terrible twos in children who are child weaned.

Anyway, I'm starting to wonder about changing my mind and starting up again quickly before the milk is gone. Tough decision.

I'll post which way I swing.
post #46 of 172
Just thought I would offer a perspective from the other side. My mother nursed me for 4 years. My aunt nursed her first for almost 6 years. My cousin and I are both happy, well adjusted people, and very into the benefits of nursing. My son nursed for 3 + years, and my daughter is now 2 and still plugging away. I often think that one of the enduring benefits of extended nursing is in raising a child who will most likely grow up to support nursing, and/ or nurse her own children...

- Chelsea
post #47 of 172
Thread Starter 
Chelsea, that's wonderful!! Thank you for sharing your experience with us!
post #48 of 172
First - I had still had milk a year after I weaned my ds - so ya never know when it will dry up.

Second - I feel that child led weaning is wonderful when both mom and child are happy and comfortable with the arrangement. However, if mom continues bfing but resents it or can't stand it then I think it would be far better to wean. (I’m not saying anyone here is like that – I don’t want anyone to read this as an attack), just my personal experience.

I weaned my first ds when he was 18 mos b/c I was personally going through a tough time in my life (not related to bfing - just personal issues) and I was so mentally and physically drained at the time that nursing was a burden and not a joy anymore. I felt that nursing my son while thinking the whole time I wish you would stop - ugh! when will this end, etc. . . was worse than weaning him. If he were to remember our bfing experience I would want him to remember me loving stroking his hair while he nursed or me smiling at him. NOT mom looking tense, uncomfortable and annoyed.

I am now nursing my 19 mos old second child. So far we are both still happily nursing. However I want to get pregnant again some time after he turns 2 and I don't feel I could handle nursing and being pregnant - so I am thinking of gradually weaning after he turns 2. I don't feel guilty about this - it is simply what works for me.

I think it is important to nurse for the first year. Beyond that, I think bfing is a very intimate and personal experience. Each nursing pair is going to have a different feeling about when the right time to wean is and this is okay. If nursing a 5 or 6 year old is working for you and the nursling that is wonderful, but if it doesn’t last that long you are not a failure or a bad mother. KWIM?
post #49 of 172
I laughed about the comments that once a child can ask for nursing you should wean. This morning my 23 month old, who especially loves morning nursing said when he was finished "Thank you, mama, nursy" and was ready to start the day.
post #50 of 172
I think I have found what works best for my daughter and I. Since I stopped nursing about 2 weeks ago, I have "given" in about 6 times and let her nurse. She loved it, I found I wasn't antsy about it, I guess because it's not as often now. Although, I am very affectionate and co-sleep with my daughter, I think we were both missing the closeness that nursing can bring.

I feel I could easily do this until she's ready to stop completely, so in essence, I guess what I'll be doing, is just taking a really long time weaning her.
post #51 of 172
post #52 of 172
Precious, Oh, good! I'm glad I misunderstood your plan of action there, lol! I was picturing both of you having a REALLY hard time! DD and I are sort of at that place now; I sometimes don't feel like nursing, and she sometimes gets upset with me, and frquency is down to maybe 4 or so times a day/night.
I'll continue to let her nurse some as long as she wants to(probbaly but I agree; it's a very personal and -mutual issue. Best wishes! Kimberly
post #53 of 172
I didn't vote. I am somewhere between 4-5 and whenever she wants. I do believe in child led weaning. Addie is 9 mos and I am pregnant, so I will be tandem nursing for a long time. I gues I just see her growing out of it by 4 or so. But if she needs it longer I will definitely be there for her. (and I am homeschooling someday so I don't have to worry about kindergarten!!!)
post #54 of 172
Well, I voted 4 or 5, but after reading the comments I guess I would be ok with longer if the child needed it.

After all, many parents feel that it is perfectly fine for their children to have a blanket, suck their thumbs, cuddle a stuffed animal, or whatever up until college even - the need for security is so high for many kids - mostly non bf kids. Those that can bf for as long as they wish do seem to be more secure as teens.

Alas, I gradually weaned my dd1 (at 22 months) when I was pg with dd2. Health concerns, etc. for me - it took 2 months, and went fine until she got a cold, but I had dried up, so that was it. When my milk came in again I gave her the option of starting again, but she said that I was being silly, that it was for babies - but wanted some squirted on her finger to taste. Can you believe it? Only 7 months later and she could not even imagine nursing again!

She is not at all jealous of her baby sister either - so things went fine. This new baby will nurse until I get pregnant again, around 3 or so. Yes, I know many women tandem nurse, and others nurse while pg - but they can - My body has never been strong - I have some blood issues that make me faint a lot - and I only have enough energy for two, not three. Hopefully I will never have twins.

I can honestly say that I have NEVER seen a child past 3 breastfeeding. I don't know anyone who has either - Here it seems that if you bf past 6 months it is extended bf. so sad.
post #55 of 172
Bella Babe, we're a homeschooling/unschooling family, too!
Nice ta meetcha
Actually, my so was at a daycare with me from 18 mths to 5 yrs, but his naptime nurse was never an issue there; lots of "alternative" practices and very tolerant atmosphere(even among the kids!)
Just wanted to say HI! Kimberly, mom to Forest, 10 next mth, and Lily, 2
post #56 of 172

Nursing and resentment

I just wanted to add that sometimes there are mixed feelings about nursing, but that isn't necessarily a reason to wean. Sometimes these are just phases - a new pregnancy, no support, etc, that we can eventually work through. I don't think you can say that it is better for the child to wean, if you are feeling any resentment or mixed feelings. My favorite piece of advice, is just when you think you can't take it anymore, it goes away.

Which I am definitely trying to listen to myself, as my 2.5 yr dd fights when we dress her and prefers to run around nude - (not PT).

Also, I wanted to post a funny comment by my mother. When I told her that Sami could possibly nurse until 5 or more years, her response was, "What is she going to do when all the other kids eat at school? Run home to nurse?"
I think most people truly don't understand what EN involves.
post #57 of 172

How old is too old

I couldnt vote for some reason.
For me, I would like to the begining of the end to start after Jonathan is one. I never expected that I would even last this long and I would like to get some of my life back.
If Jonathan doesnt allow us to slowly quit I won't make him though.
I do think though that if you and baby want to BF longer than that, More power to you!!!
post #58 of 172
I voted between 3 and 4 years old.

I feel the same way about bottles, diapers, and pacifiers. If a (otherwise normal, healthy) child is still using them at age three, then the parent should begin weaning the child so that by age four he no longer nurses, drinks from a bottle, uses a pacifier or wears diapers. These things are appropriate for babies, but a child of four should be learning tools that eventually lead to independence.

I am curious, since the poll stopped naming certain ages, how old is too old? 6? 7? 8? 9? 10? 11? 12? What if a 12 year old IS still expressing a desire to BF? Is that too old? Is there any age at which you think "too old!" Or no?
post #59 of 172
Thread Starter 
Originally posted by Teensy

If a (otherwise normal, healthy) child is still using them at age three, then the parent should begin weaning the child so that by age four he no longer nurses, drinks from a bottle, uses a pacifier or wears diapers. These things are appropriate for babies, but a child of four should be learning tools that eventually lead to independence.
Teensy, I guess the best way for me to approach this is to simply ask you to back your position with reasons *why* you feel this way? What proof do you have that makes your reasoning valid (and "because society says so" isn't sufficient enough reason for me...I want to know reasons *why* w/back-up)? If the child is still needing (or even wanting) to nurse (or wear diapers etc) then isn't that proof enough that the child isn't ready to wean (or potty train, etc)? Society pushes children to grow up so fast that they don't even get a chance to be children ("only babies wear diapers, nursing is for babies, big kids sleep in their own beds", etc. etc), they are forced to become little grown-ups that live with their parents for 18+ years (KWIM?)! They have plenty of time to grow up on *their* own time, we don't have to push them to be independent, they'll do it themselves when they really *grow up* and *want* independence.

Originally posted by Teensy

I am curious, since the poll stopped naming certain ages, how old is too old? 6? 7? 8? 9? 10? 11? 12? What if a 12 year old IS still expressing a desire to BF? Is that too old? Is there any age at which you think "too old!" Or no?
Actually I myself see any age as appropriate as long as the child still needs/wants to nurse (you can't *make* a child nurse)...I don't care what the numerical age is. I know mothers who are nursing at 7-8yrs and I see nothing wrong with it, it's natural. What society sees as "normal" and what is naturally humanly normal is not the same, especially when it comes to nursing! Read some Katherine Dettwyler (sp?) and you'll see just how much you don't know!

I stopped the poll at age 5 because that seems to be the point where many people, even proclaimed child-led-weaners, draw the line. So I assumed that those parents who were ok with over age 5 were okay with any numerical age (true child-led weaning). Anyone can correct me if my assumption is wrong. I know mothers who are nursing beyond 5yrs so I didn't intend 5yrs to look like "the limit".


(edited to change "self-weaning" to "child-led weaning", it was late )
post #60 of 172
Gentle and to the point Mother Sunshine.
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