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This thread is dedicated to Moms who are EB older children - Page 3

post #41 of 520
Dd will be 4 at the end of May, and she nurses at night, for about 20 seconds on each side. She's been doing this for about six months. Before that she nursed several times a day and loved to hang out at the breast. It was getting to be a little too much for me, but she wasn't ready to stop. There were few 5 minute nursings, she mostly liked to nurse for really long stretches, several times a day, which was just taxing! So I started counting to 20 while she nursed, and at 20 we were done on that side. We no longer count, and sometimes she nurses for longer--like 3 minutes. Now she likes to hold my breasts or lay on them as much as she takes nip sips. The end is near! I am not really sad to see this part of our relationship end because she's finding other ways to snuggle and be close to mama. The breast holding gets a little annoying, especially when she starts twiddling like she did as a 1 yo. Dh and I sometimes call dd "The Groper"!

Dd talks about nursing a lot and has friends who still nurse, or EN. She talks about how this or that person "nurses her mama's nips" and they're big kids like her. If I ask her when she thinks she'll stop nursing, she either ignores me or says when she's as big as one of her older friends (12 yo! ) I hope she'll always remember that she was EBF, especially if she decides to have children. It won't be weird to her!

The LLL book "Mothering Your Nursing Toddler" has been a great source of support and help for me. I never expected to be nursing a preschooler. If we have more babies I'd do it again, even though I have not enjoyed all of it. For a while there it was impossible to sit near dd without getting the "more nip" demand. At times I wished she'd let me read her books or just snuggle like she does with dh and her grandparents. OTOH DD has benefitted from it tremendously physically and emotionally, and nursing made parenting sooo much easier those first two years. No getting up in the middle of the night, no worry of dehydration when she was sick, etc, and I learned to be really good at one handed typing!
post #42 of 520
What a great thread! While I am thrilled to see everyone here, I do wish there were more moms of older children. My ds will be 5 in June. I really don't keep track, but I'd say in a 24 hour period he nurses 3 or 4 times. Sometimes that is less and sometimes it is more. He nurses to sleep of course, and we do still have the family bed. I can see that he nurses less as he gets older, but nursing is still so important to him that I cannot foresee when he will wean. (I suspect it will be quite awhile) That is fine with me, but I must say there is sense of validation and support in seeing other mothers with older nurslings. I know in my heart that child-led weaning is best for my child, I believe he is a child that needs this connection with me until he decides he no longer needs it. I believe that it would be harmful to him if I decided when to wean him. I don't have a problem with age, and I think a child should nurse for as long as they need it. That said though, as he gets older, I become more and more aware of what a minority we are. The support and validation from threads such as this is so important to not only myself, but I am sure many others who are, or will nurse older children. So please keep this thread going! Thanks and blessings to you and your families

post #43 of 520
Parthenia, please edit your signature to 2 lines per MDC guidelines. Thanks,

BTW, your mailbox is full
post #44 of 520
Thread Starter 
Glad you're here Peace4all

post #45 of 520
Why haven't I seen this thread before? It's not like I don't spend a lot of time here :

DD is 3y8m, and a busy nurser. I'm 6 months pg, and it's slowed down a bit due to my sensitive body and decreasing milk supply over the last 3 months. She nurses in the morning, and between 6 and 10 times a day (usually). Lots of pick me up snax

I have one inverted nipple that never came out well, so she only nurses on one side. I imagine that ds will develop a preference for the same boob, but luckily dd has recently granted that she can share "her favite titty"

I'm starting to call it xbf. Xtreme Breastfeeding :LOL

It's so good to be at a place where people say their one nursling is "only" 18 months old
post #46 of 520
(i'm stalking you, simonee..)

hi.. i haven't seen this thread before either, nor have i read throo all the replies yet, but i just wanted to introduce myself before i forget. my son is 3 and a quarter and i am 5 months pregnant. he averages about 4 milkings a day. before nap, before bed, sometimes when he wakes up, and almost any time i lay down (which is either funny and cute or annoying, depending on my mood).

i plan on self weaning too, but i have been disouraging a little here and there, keeping it generally to bedtimes and when he's hurt enough to want to.
post #47 of 520
Good to read all these. My ds is three and a quarter and nurses 5-8x a day, plus once or twice at night. I'm seven weeks pregnant, and all of a sudden my family is suggesting I wean. Not that they think I'm damaging the children, just that my body can't take it. I've always been really thin and my parents are worried I'll just whittle away to nothing. I won't, of course, and luckily dh and my midwife are really supportive of EBF.

Not that I can imagine weaning my incredibly intense, incredibly persistent ds. I *am* a little worried about starting in a co-op preschool in the fall. Guess I'll just talk with the teacher and see what she suggests, whether there is somewhere private for us to go if ds needs to nurse.

We moved in October and I don't have any of my great AP friends around, so ds never sees other big kids nursing. It really bugs me. And the mothers of some of his friends are irritated that I nurse in front of their children because it causes the kids to ask questions that make the moms uncomfortable. The questions are just normal curiosity, but some of them then ask their moms to nurse and it can really upset or annoy the moms. Sigh.

Glad to see this thread. I've been feeling pretty isolated lately.
post #48 of 520
Ok- so with all you moms who've been nursing since the dawn of time (sure seems like it sometimes, doesn't it? ) I have the perfect focus group to answer a question.

I've been nursing for nearly 6 years straight (I had a two month break at the end of my last pregnancy-actively weaned ds1 because I just couldn't take it anymore plus my body was really trying to go into premature labor) and I have come to realize in the past few months that my nipples always feel bruised. Even when ds isn't nursing, it just feels like I have these two big ol' bruises hanging on the ends of my tatas. Has anyone else experienced this? Is it just that he's nursing harder? (possible) or what? He only nurses 3-4 times a day now, mostly at sleeping or waking up times. I must say, I'm not fond of this constant ache feeling and would love some advice on how to relieve it.
post #49 of 520
Mine got real sore for the past couple of months till I came to the conclusion that it was possibly a combination of the stronger suck reflex cuz of increased appetite, thirst and simply now a larger boy and maybe residual food or drink other than water in my son's mouth. I have been reminding him to "nurse like a baby", bringing him into a quieter area of the house if he seems distracted, offering a drink of water when he starts this or asking if he wants <insert food item here>. When he's been eating something and wants to nurse quite soon after (like usual) I strongly encourage him to rinse his mouth with water and allow him to spit it into the bathtub. This generally ensures his cooperation to rinse a few times since he has so much fun doing it. The soreness has gotten much better.
post #50 of 520
Did everyone know they were going to do child led weaning? And did you know that meant you were going to be nursing for years?

Everyone in my family nurses. I always knew I would nurse my boys, I just had no idea that 3 1/2 year old still like to nurse My brother and sister both weaned around a year (my stepmom worked full time and could never pump so they had a lot of formula at the babysitters and both weaned even though (especially with my sister who was only 9 months old) my stepmom really tried to keep nursing). My cousins all weaned around a year too, maybe one or two made it to 18 months, but not two years old, and all seemed to wean pretty easily then. I am the oldest grandchild so I do remember, they are all much younger, none are out of high school and my sister and brother are in elementry school. I weaned at about 4 months, because my mom had no milk because she was pregnagnt and that brother was premature and never did latch on right, he is the only one in the grandkid generation not to nurse.

So here I am nursing my 3 1/2 year old and almost 2 year old and I really had no idea that 2 and 3 and 4 year olds really liked/needed/wanted to nurse.

How long did you think you would be nursing your children?
post #51 of 520
I can answer Mallory's question, but I don't really have any experience with what you describe, Luna. Sorry.

Mallory: I thought DD would nurse 2-3 yrs. My family nurses, but most babes are weaned by a yr. My one SIL nursed her youngest 'til 4, and I thought that reasonable. And in retrospect it was at about age 4 that the intense desire went away for DD. She continues to ask for it...just yesterday again, and she is 6 yrs, 3 mos.
I'm surprised how attached she still is to the breast. It's not like she isn't in my lap for other things half the day... But there's no milk...
post #52 of 520

Did I post in this thread already?

Anyway, my oldest weaned at 3&abit, my DD has yet to wean at 3&almosthalf (& baby's still a baby ... only 1&change).

And as I type my 3.5 DD is nagging me to brush her hair ... because that's morning nursing time.

And I'm typing instead.

We pushed DS#1 to wean at 3, and (I) decided not to do the same with DD ... though at this exact moment, I'm regretting that decision. She's very cute, but is so ... well, you know.

At bedtime I don't mind it, but during the day am really not thrilled when she nags to nurse, because she only gets forceful about it when she's trying really hard to hold in a poop. (I'd find the links to the threads about her holding in her poops, but there are probably too many ... )

Anyway, support is a fine thing ...
post #53 of 520

I thought I would nurse my first for about a year and my second for 18 months to no more than 2 years.

So my son weaned right before a year and to my surprrise (pleasant my dd weaned at 5.8 years and I was actually shocked when she told me she was ready to wean
post #54 of 520
Thread Starter 
It's good to see you here Cindy, I was wondering if you'd venture over here.

Mallory, I planned to bf 1 year. I had no idea what child-led weaning was until it happened :LOL. That was when I researched it and found that it had a name and that I wasn't the only one. I ran on pure instincts and felt very alone until then (which was when dd was 3.5).
post #55 of 520
I am so glad to read these postings. I am nursing my 4 year old son and I am the one with the oldest nurser. I know he is going to nurse for the long haul. He loves his "nannies". I am starting to feel a little funny when people hear he is "still" nursing. But, I know it is best for him and that is what is important. He was a preemie and it took me 3 months of pumping to teach him to nurse, so, I am not just giving up so soon .

Also, It drives my mom crazy, but that is just a bonus

But, I am very glad to know I am not the only one. Have any of you had people ask you if you are worried about your child being taken away from you for EN? I get very nervous when people ask me about this. My mom is concerned about it. But, I am more concerned about her causing a problem for me than anyone else. This is usually the first thing people bring up when they hear he is still nursing. Odd.

I do have lots of friends now that probably will nurse as long as I am, but right now their kids are younger. I never intended to nurse this long either, it just happened. I know will be very sad when he is weaned. Heck, I was a little depressed when he was potty trained. We aren't having anymore babies, so I am cherishing every moment
post #56 of 520
Thank you all for sharing.

I am tandem nursing my 2 yo and my 4 month old. After reading all your stories I am feeling back on track with my intentions for child led weaning
post #57 of 520
Hello, all, and to Mallory, my dd turned 4 this February. I had read so many supportive books (The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, The Continuum Concept, the Dr. Mom books, Dr. Sears). I learned that, from an anthropological standpoint, looking at the gestation period of humans, life expectancy, when teething begins, that kind of thing, if left to their own rhythm children would wean anywhere from 2 1/2 to 7 years. I tried to release my expectations, and here we are, still going very strong. It does get tiresome, but I try to remember how fast her life has gone by already, and try to change my thought when I get cranky. I trust that it will all be so worth it to her, and to our relationship.

post #58 of 520
My nursling (ds) is 3 1/2 years old (42 months, if I just calculated that in my head correctly) and I am 32 weeks pregnant with our second child. He is only nursing about twice a day and I haven't had too much irritation with nursing during pregnancy, but I did think that he was going to self wean by this point in my pregnancy.

When we talk about weaning (he doesn't actually know that word), he looks at me like I am crazy and has informed me that he WILL still want to nurse, even when he is a bigger boy.

Now I'm concerned that he will be super-demanding of my attention when the new baby arrives. Lately he gets excited when my husband goes to work so that "it's just you and me mommy", he touches my face and asks me to stay "forever" in his bed when I am the one to lay down with him (I tell him that I will stay until he falls asleep and he can come to our bed if he wakes up in the middle of the night) and recently he has been yelling at me to play with him, NOW.

I (and my husband) give him ALOT of attention and I have been working on setting loving and realistic limits about what I can give. I hope that the fact that he is still nursing will ease the transition of a new sibling. He seems excited and eager about the new baby and we talk about the fact that the baby will nurse all the time, won't be able to play for awhile, will need to be carried everywhere. Still, I wonder how the new baby will impact his desire to nurse and my feelings about it.

I did want to practice child-led weaning. During pregnancy my goal was to nurse my first born exclusively for 6 months, continue for a year and then as long as we both wanted... I did hope to allow my child to wean naturally, but I didn't want to set myself up for disappointment. I worked full time (and traveled with husband and baby in tow) until my son was 2 years old, so we did it with alot of pumping, logistics and support from my husband.

I have to admit that I have not allowed my son to completely guide his nursing. He would nurse day and night if I allowed it. At age 2 we went back and forth with night weaning and then in the past year I pretty much only allow morning and bedtime nursing. Lately I offer a snuggle and make believe bedtime story in bed as an alternative to nursing before bed (sometimes he chooses the story and sometimes to nurse). I allow him to nurse if he is really seems to need it anytime, as long as we are in a private setting.

I'm not worried about having my child taken away due to extended nursing. I know the details of the IL mom this happened to (hi respondant mom, if you are reading this) and I think that the judge and others in the case really picked on her for so many outrageous reasons - single parent, socio-economic status, housekeeping... ridiculous stuff. I am the most mainstream looking mamma with a big house, education, money in the bank, strong marriage, etc... And I think that if DCFS ever came knocking on my door I would respond to them with kindness, education and (truthfully) compliance.

I think it is our responsiblity to make extended nursing known in the world as a thing that is not some fringe thing, but something wholesome and healthy. I don't let my son nurse in public (I'm just not comfortable with that, for several reasons), but our family, friends, healthcare providers, etc. generally all know that he still nurses and that we co-sleep, etc. At the same time, if I ever felt that my son's custody was threatened by our nursing relationship, I would actively wean him. Then I would fight like hell to continue to education people about why that why natural weaning is best. Complicated issues...

Thanks for the opportunity to share all this.
Blessings, all.
post #59 of 520
my ds nursed regularly till he was 30 months old, weaned while i was pg, although he asked/ i offered a few times while pg, and he has nursed a handful of times since dd's arrival, but i dont count myself a "tandem nursin mama", since there is no regularity....he does still get ebm in a cup once a day though
post #60 of 520
It is so wonderful to read this thread and find other Mamas who are not only nursing older children, but still nursing them more than once a day.

DD just turned 5 and shows no sign of stopping and DS is 7 months. I nursed DD all through my pregnancy, but because of the pain on my part and I suspect the little to no milk on her part, we were down to once or twice a day when DS was born. We have a great picture of the two of them tandem nursing on the living room floor 20 minutes after DS was born. My milk came in immediately and DD was in heaven. In fact she once told me that one of the best things about having a new baby was all the milk my breasts made. She even out nursed my new born on more than one occasion!

I find tandem nursing to be incredibly difficult, but I can't figure out exactly why. I can nurse either one alone, but the two together often makes me want to run screaming from the room. My theory is it has to do with the very different sucking on each breast. Does anyone else experience this? Unfortunately now when either one sees the other nursing....

I started out with a goal to make it for a year with DD. We hit a year, and she was barely showing an interest in solids. So we just kept going and eventually I decided I wanted to try child led weaning. There are definately days when I wish she would wean NOW, but for the most part I love having this relationship. I am some what awed to think that I may end up nursing for a period of 8-10 years straight. What a long cry from my original goal of making it to a year!
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