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11 YR old BF - Page 7

post #121 of 160
Greaseball, I am so sorry if I offended you. I didn't mean that I thought only a single mother would do that. I just can't imagine everyone involved in the childs upbringing being okay with bf an 11yr old.
post #122 of 160
Kirsten -
I probably am comfortable nursing longer than 18 mos, but just wanted to say a big THANK YOU for bravely saying all the things I wanted to but was afraid I would not be able to control my frustration.
post #123 of 160
Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
If I knew personally a woman nursing an 11 year old, I would call the police to report it.
How would you feel if one of the many people in this country who think that breastfeeding beyond six months, or six weeks, or at all, is disgusting, called the police and reported you for breastfeeding your 18 month old? How would you feel if the police were unenlightened and agreed that it was abuse and arrested you? This is the kind of threat that sends mothers who practice sustained breastfeeding into the closet in fear, keeping our culture in the dark ages. Since you are only comfortable with SBF up to age 3, even mothers breastfeeding four year olds are going to have to be afraid that you are their next door neighbor.

Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
I can't understand how we can say there is no line - of course there is a line. There are lines for everything!
Okay, in that case, I'm going to pass a law that no one over 40 can kiss in public. Why? Because I personally find it gross and disgusting. It makes me uncomfortable. They should be ashamed of themselves at that age. I think there are phychologically healthier ways for them to spend their time. What do you think of that?

Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
We are not allowed to do anything imaginable just because we think it is our right.
Breastfeeding my child is one thing I do have a fundamental right to do, and it is no one's business how old my child is.

Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
I feel so badly for that boy
And I feel bad for you. Your intolerance is very sad. Here is the evidence that those of us who advocate SBF certainly have our work cut out for us.

Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
he has absolutely zero chance of ever growing up to have a healthy relationship IMO.
Actually, children who are breastfed until they self-wean have the very best chance of growing up to have a healthy relationship. (As well as a healthy heart, a healthy liver, a healthy brain, a healthy stomach....)

Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
That mother is not helping him. For whatever odd reason, probably abuse in her own childhood, she is trying to connect with her son in an unhealthy way.
Ah. Nothing like blind, paranoid speculation. (Sorry, but this is really pushing my buttons. I think I was pretty good with people up until the threat to call the police.)

Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
There are appropriate ages for things.
And naturally you are the person to determine the proper age for everyone else's children. (12-18 months, apparently. Up to age 3 if you're feeling generous.)

Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
If people really are nursing 10, 11, 12 year olds, we should not support that with "they can decide" as that will lead to laws (which I believe would be appropriate for those cases) but could filter down to us. My personal comfort level is 12 to 18 months - am ok in general with up to 3 I suppose. ... do you want the vote to come down to 12 months?
It is *your* attitude -- that lines should be drawn at all -- that will lead to laws that will filter down to us! If we don't want laws passed that will affect those of us nursing 2-4 year olds, then we *have* to support *all* women practicing SBF -- even the ones nursing 10-12 year olds -- I might even say *especially* the ones nursing 10-12 year olds. The only way to keep the law out of it is for us to agree that it is no one else's business! It's not for the law or anyone else to decide where a "line" should be drawn.

Quote:
Originally posted by Kirsten
But I support breastfeeding in all my friends, and everyone I come in contact with.
As long as they stay within your "personal comfort level" of 12-18 months... *maybe* up to 3 years...
post #124 of 160
Quote:
If I knew personally a woman nursing an 11 year old, I would call the police to report it.
You would be reporting something that is not a crime. I was recently given a handbook published by DHS on how to recognize and report child abuse, and it listed several specific things that were child abuse, such as "Giving other children nice things for their rooms and keeping one child's room as empty as a cell." Nowhere did it say anything about breastfeeding up to a certain age.

Some girls are going through puberty at very early ages. The youngest age of menstruation was 2.5! Was she too old to nurse? Boys will get erections while nursing, since they can get erections from doing darn near anything, and women sometimes even have orgasms. Some women even have orgasms during childbirth. (Not me, I'm sorry to say!) Are they using their children sexually? Some women say that it's not even ok to breastfeed newborn boys (though newborn girls, it's not as bad). What if this child were a girl? Is that somehow different?

I know that between 1 and 10%, depending on whom you believe, of all child sexual abuse cases are those of women abusing their children. How many of these cases involved forced breastfeeding? It's just not something I've heard of.

It's funny how with all the disapproving voices here, many of us hear that kind of stuff all the time in regards to their parenting practices but somehow, althought "they" are "wrong about us" we are right about this woman?

I saw a lot of support here for the woman on our board who was nursing an 8-yr-old, even though she was no longer lactating. Is 8 ok and 11 not ok? How do we draw these lines? Don't the lines depend on the child, in this case whom we don't know?
post #125 of 160
I have been reading this thread with great interest. I think a tremendous amount of thought has gone into many of the posts here, and I appreciate being educated about sustained breastfeeding. When I first read that an 11 year old was still nursing, my eyebrows went up. I admit that I wondered what the mother was thinking, and if it was a healthy relationship. After reading all the points made, I tend to agree with Devrock. Without having more information about the mother-son relationship, I can't say that nursing at age 11 is unhealthy. I don't think that I would have the patience to nurse for 11 years, but I'm going to make an effort to hold off on judging someone else for nursing so long. I do think that sustained breastfeeding needs to be made more public, so that it is considered normal in our society. While I doubt that I would be willing to risk CPS involvement in my life, and my child's life, by making SBF known after my child's a certain age, I appreciate those who do take the risk. If not for other people (like many here at MDC) letting me know about SBF, I may very well have weaned my son before he was a year old. I hope that my son is able to wean himself in his own time. While I hope that it won't take 11 years for him to do so, I can appreciate that each child has his own timetable for weaning.

-Debi
post #126 of 160
Thank you, Greaseball -- I admire the way you were able to keep cool better than I was.

And thank you, Lotusdebi -- you have restored my faith in humanity.
post #127 of 160
Devrock, I have a sincere question. You seem to be insisting that those of us who have a problem with the 11 year old should understand that most people think the same thing about nursing a 3 year old. I just flat-out don't agree with that. I agree that most people are uncomfortable with it, some even disgusted by it, but I have to say that my experience has *not* been that most people view it as potential child abuse. I think the fact that it is accepted in other cultures is a factor in this.

As an example, there was a piece on our local news about EBF which featured a local mother whose 4 year old dd is still nursing. The girl's face was not shown on camera (mother's choice, I bet) but they did interview her. She was very well spoken about how nursing made her feel calmer when she was upset about something. The piece mentioned the controversial nature of this practice, but it was sympathetic to the mother and child. They came off as very normal and loving. At the time I saw it, I was not yet a mother myself and EBF seemed very strange to me (although not psychologically damaging). The piece went a long way toward opening my mind.

So I guess my question is this: why do you believe that a lack of acceptance toward bf a toddler or preschooler will lead to legal action? I don't know anyone who would call CPS on a an otherwise good mother just for nursing a 3 year old, even if they didn't like the practice. And I can't imagine an overburdened social worker spending much time and effort on such a case. Just curious if you have some experience to the contrary.
post #128 of 160
Quote:
That's true. We agree that hips attract and arouse men, and yet they are not considered genitals. It is not indecent to carry a child on your hip. Hips are not inherently sex organs, in the sense that there must be sexual implications whenever you do anything with them.
Very well said, and a great point, ITA.

Quote:
If I knew personally a woman nursing an 11 year old, I would call the police to report it.
Who are you to draw the line? Not only would you be reporting something that is not illegal, as greaseball said, but you would be taking resources away from children who are beaten and raped by their families! CPS doesn't have the resources to go after crankball reports of SBF. The reason I am afraid to parent my child the way I see fit in the public eye is b/c people say things like that. There was a thread in TAO recently where women were discussing their horror strories of CPS- most calls were b/c of something AP or natural they did in their family. I actually keep a civil right s lawyer on retainer, b/c of statements like this. What a frightening thing to say.



Quote:
My personal comfort level is 12 to 18 months - am ok in general with up to 3 I suppose.
I am glad it isn't you drawing the line! I was forcibly weaned by my parents divorce at almost 3 and I remember it, I was very hurt at the loss of the relationship, and there was nothing wrong or sexual about it. Do you plan to give your child cow's milk as a replacement for your human milk? Do you think that your comfort level is based on society's issues or your own knowledge of physical anthropology? Just curious what you base it on.

I just think, Kirsten that your kneejerk reaction is based in some ingrained belief system. I hope that the time you spend here at MDC opens your mind a little.
Lauren
post #129 of 160
i was thinking about this thread and my emotions about nursing.

it might be slightly OT, but i thought about how when i first became pregnant i had never seen a woman nurse. I met a woman nursing a 9month old boy in my first trimester. I remember reading about the AAP guiline '1 year' and thinking, oh thats easy, but i had no real opinon on it. I was sure i would nurse because i wanted to do the best for my child. But i had no idea how long.

Before my son was born people were asking me when i would wean him.

But weaning never made sense to me. If nursing is soo great, why would a baby 364 days old need it but not one 365 days old? How could you give your child a gift and take it away before they were done with it? What is the rush to wean- from the breast, bed, everything? Even then i had no glimpse into the swiftness of my sons childhood. He is 14 months old and it seems he was born just the other day...

Anyway, i remember by the time that 9mo finally was weaned (mother led) at 2 1/2, i had evolved from a person with no opinion on SN to someone really sad to see him weaned. He was just a baby, still. And when i saw my first 3 year old nurse i remember thinking, she is still just a little baby. She needs her mother.

Who knows where my opinions will lead me in the future! I hope that many more close minded or simply unopinionated people will begin to see what i did, that it is no ones business but the nursing couple, and mostly it should be a child's decision, it is the child's birth right.

And 12-18 months? Ahhh! My son would be weaned or nearly so! He still nurses like a newborn, and he loves it, and so do i. He needs to nurse! I cant even imagine saying 'no more of your favorite thing in the world!' . I would never do that. I see tristan nursing beyond the age of 3.

Thanks for letting me ramble some more.

Tabitha
post #130 of 160
I think it's important to recognize that some of us that don't think it's a good idea, didn't say it was abuse either. I just think it's not the best choice given the facts as I see them. I simply don't see things as all or nothing.

Therefore, I'm not condemning the hypothetical mother, but seriously questioning the logic.

...and Devrock, i do have one thing left that's confounding me, we could go round and round on the rest but this:

Quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by gaffa
I think rubbing hands, feet, backs, is different because it is also acceptable in friendly settings amongst adults. Touching someone's breasts is not
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It should be. Breasts should not be taboo.
Is cut and dry for me. My breasts are almost as sexually sensitive as my sexual organs. They are a HIGHLY erogenous zone. It would therefore be as inappropriate for anyone to touch them besides my husband or child, or someone I wanted to be aroused with should I not be married. I'm sure that's the case for many women.

Kind of off otpic...but that kind of had me going
post #131 of 160
Tabitha- we posted at the same time! And fwiw, I agree with you in both your posts.
L
post #132 of 160
Quote:
um, hello, my son has had continuous erections every single time he has nursed since the day he was born. Once he was 5 months old or so, he began to play with his erect penis while nursing. He will just sit and play with it now, he knows where and what it is and it is his body.
My dear Tabitha, I nurse a 17 month old boy who sometimes gets erections from the simplest things... a diaper change, a nursing session, whatever. There is a major difference between an 11 year old getting SEXUAL erections and discovering his mature sexual nature and a little boy unaware of sex and breasts used as stimulation for the act of making love. If this 11 yo. was shielded from our society for the rest of his life, he probably would, in the absence of abuse or manipulation (assuming it is a healthy BF relationship, of course), remember his nursing days fondly for the rest of his life. But, most likely, he will not be sheilded from all the movies and pictures and internet sites that perpetuate the breasts as sexual body parts. Therefore, the chances of his ending up on a therapist's couch or feeling like a total outcast for most of his life are pretty high.

I am sorry, but I would never use my 11 year old child to prove a point to society. There is absolutely no argument that there are TREMENDOUS differences between a small child and a "young adult" reaching puberty, if they have not already. That is not "society" speaking for me; I did not have a "desexualized" labor and birth... I had two very sensual homebirths, breastfed/am breastfeeding, and am extremely liberal in most of my thoughts and actions. I do believe that children need lines drawn. This child is either emotionally damaged in some way that requires the "nubbing" to take place, or the mother is.

Comparing a foot rub or a massage to sucking a breast is extreme. Following that logic, maybe the 11 year old can play with his mother's vagina because it is simply there for making and having babies? I don't mean to sound vulgar.... but, really, why is any part of us sexualized then? All of our parts have totally anatomical functions unrelated to sex.
post #133 of 160
Quote:
Originally posted by gaffa

Is cut and dry for me. My breasts are almost as sexually sensitive as my sexual organs. They are a HIGHLY erogenous zone. It would therefore be as inappropriate for anyone to touch them besides my husband or child, or someone I wanted to be aroused with should I not be married. I'm sure that's the case for many women.
Kind of off otpic...but that kind of had me going
An interesting thing to mention here is that in many less.... ahem... civilized cultures, breasts and penises are not taboo. I remember reading about one, where little boys would pass by the grandmas and the grandmas would affectionately 'tug' the little boy's penises, like you or i would pat a baby's hair.

we are socialized to believe in 'private parts'- they do not actually exist from birth. And while i used to be a stickler about personal space i certainly am over that now as the mamma of a toddler!

for example, 'naughtiness' and taboo in sex is so cultivated in our society and porn is hugely centered around, if not entirely inspired by 'being naughty' - the people who create and hand down judgements on what is naughty and what is 'pure' are usually also condemning porn. hmmm? its true that we can liberate ourselves from taboo and societal 'norms' and just live happy lives. do what you want with your body! teach your children to be free in that same way. really, there is no other way to overcome.

tabitha
post #134 of 160
I was discussing this with dh, and Devrock, he has a couple questions for you regarding breasts not being sexual:
If not, do you actually not allow your partner to stimulate your breasts sexually?! What a crying shame, if you don't. ALso, if breasts are not inherently sexual, and if you don't care about societal boundaries, why not go around topless, so your nurslings may have access to your breasts whenever they like? And because my breasts are only meant for nursing children, I can let my children and other people touch my breasts at will, as if they didn't belong to me? I hardly think so.
I truly don't mean to be ugly in asking these questions, merely want you to see that it is ludicrous to say that breasts are solely meant as instruments of feeding/nurturing. As far as the other points you have raised, well, whatever. I can't get my head around it at all. We do have to live in the world, and not turn people off sbf (a phrase I like, btw) by refusing to have any boundaries whatsoever when it comes to how we utilize our bodies, i.e. breastfeeding. More flies with honey than vinegar, ykwim? I don't really expect this to get through to you, but feel masochistically compelled to point this all out.
post #135 of 160
Sexual problems??!!!

If breastfeeding until 11 causes a child to be sexually deviant from the standard American model, let's take the new governor of California for a role model perhaps, well...then let's breastfeed
until 12 or 16!!!

People saying they would call the police or offering any form of judgement on this really set off my prudish-morality-police-bigot
alarms.

Nobody has the right to interfer in the mutual affections between a mother and child. Period.

Junk food. Teaching sons that women are sexual toys. Preaching hate against some distant country. Physical discipline. This is abuse.

What this woman might have been doing is a matter for her and her quite-able-to-pull-himself-off-the-nipple-if-he-wishes-to child to decide. It isn't abuse.

I doubt she even exists. I imagine she is just a red herring and fantasy witch set up by anti-breastfeeders.

If she does exist, then I hope she goes on doing what she knows is right...and keeps her life very secret from all of those who think they know better and are so full of moral superiority that they are ready to call in the shock troops against one woman.

I gave up being into consensus and having a civil discussion. I just want to protect myself from the likes of those who have a direct line to John Ashcroft.
post #136 of 160
Quote:
Originally posted by chemigogo
ALso, if breasts are not inherently sexual, and if you don't care about societal boundaries, why not go around topless, so your nurslings may have access to your breasts whenever they like?
We do just exactly that. Quick!!! Someone call the police over to our house!
post #137 of 160


We do too, zevulon!
post #138 of 160
"I think that a thousand women bfing 2, 3 & 4 year olds need to go public, and a hundred women bfing 5-10 yr olds need to go public, as well as one woman bfing an 11 year old. The one woman bfing the 11 year old did her part. The 1100 women bfing 2-10 year olds need to do their part."

Devrock, I agree with you that women need to go public. But my point was that going public with an 11 year old is not going to help the cause, but hinder it. It is just toooo radical for most people to handle (even ebf's here are disagreeing, so the general public would use it as proof that ebf is wrong, period.)

In fact, I am one of those women who go public about ebf and about tandem nursing. I never, ever cover up my nursing, wherever I am. I am proud to tandem nurse my children. I answer questions about weaning and nursing honestly (except to my 85 year old neighbour, LOL, but I figure there's not a lot to gain by educating her). But having said that, I am careful about my audience, and if my children continued to nurse to 11, I would not go public about it. I'm honestly not sure at what age I'd become more careful about talking or nursing in public, but it would certainly be well before 11.

Maybe this doesn't make me the radical that I should be, but I do feel that by publicly tandem nursing my children and educating new mothers and mothers-to-be about nursing, I do my bit to change the world. (In fact, today I heard that a new mum that I gave info to during her pregnancy is now determined to exclusively nurse 'at least to one year', regardless of the pressures of her family to wean already - her baby is 2 months old : )

I just don't happen to think that if my children are still nursing at eleven, it will help the breastfeeding cause if I talk about it in public. It would take thousands of women doing that to make a positive impact, and I seriously doubt that this is going to happen. This sort of story sets the breastfeeding cause back, it doesnt help it seem normal - instead, it reinforces the idea that it is the woman doing it for 'herself'.

Otherwise, ITA with your posts. I was not disagreeing, just questioning this mother's wisdom.
post #139 of 160
Quote:
Originally posted by luv my 2 sweeties
I agree that most people are uncomfortable with it, some even disgusted by it, but I have to say that my experience has *not* been that most people view it as potential child abuse.
Your experience obviously differs from my own. I hope I am wrong about most people thinking that breastfeeding a three year old is abuse.

Quote:
Originally posted by luv my 2 sweeties
As an example, there was a piece on our local news about EBF which featured a local mother whose 4 year old dd is still nursing. The girl's face was not shown on camera (mother's choice, I bet) but they did interview her. She was very well spoken about how nursing made her feel calmer when she was upset about something. The piece mentioned the controversial nature of this practice, but it was sympathetic to the mother and child. They came off as very normal and loving. At the time I saw it, I was not yet a mother myself and EBF seemed very strange to me (although not psychologically damaging). The piece went a long way toward opening my mind.
I'll bet that after the story ran, a hundred people wrote in condemning the practice and calling it sick, disgusting, abusive, etc., and condemning the newspaper for running such a story.

Quote:
Originally posted by luv my 2 sweeties
why do you believe that a lack of acceptance toward bf a toddler or preschooler will lead to legal action? I don't know anyone who would call CPS on a an otherwise good mother just for nursing a 3 year old, even if they didn't like the practice.
You're lucky. I wish I could say the same.

Quote:
Originally posted by luv my 2 sweeties
I can't imagine an overburdened social worker spending much time and effort on such a case.
Let's hope not.

Quote:
Originally posted by luv my 2 sweeties
Just curious if you have some experience to the contrary.
Unfortunately yes.

Quote:
Originally posted by gaffa
My breasts are almost as sexually sensitive as my sexual organs. They are a HIGHLY erogenous zone. It would therefore be as inappropriate for anyone to touch them besides my husband or child, or someone I wanted to be aroused with should I not be married.
Really? Do you find it is difficult to allow breast exams to be performed? Yet your child does touch your breast and your child does breastfeed, and that doesn't stimulate you sexually, right? I do have sensitive nerve endings in my nipples, but nowhere else in my breasts. And my child manages to actually take my nipple into her mouth and suckle, without stimulating the nerves. It seems like someone should at least be able to pat the side of my breast without it bothering me. Of course, everyone sets their own personal boundaries, which other people should respect. I just don't think that breasts specifically should automatically be taboo for everyone. Personally, the only time my breast is "activated" as an erogenous zone is when I am in a romantic situation.

Quote:
Originally posted by candiland
most likely, he will not be sheilded from all the movies and pictures and internet sites that perpetuate the breasts as sexual body parts. Therefore, the chances of his ending up on a therapist's couch or feeling like a total outcast for most of his life are pretty high.
And we must be careful to lay the blame for that on the guilty party: on the movies, and the pictures and the internet sites that perpetuate the breasts as sexual body parts. Not on the healthy breastfeeding relationship. Let's fight the enemy, not the victim.

Quote:
Originally posted by candiland
I would never use my 11 year old child to prove a point to society.
I'm certain no one is asking you to. In fact, I don't know of anyone who would SBF for the sole purpose of proving a point to society. We SBF because we believe it is the right thing to do for our children. Proving a point to society is a perk.

Quote:
Originally posted by candiland
This child is either emotionally damaged in some way that requires the "nubbing" to take place, or the mother is.
Again, you are engaging in sheer speculation. I am aware of absolutely no evidence to support such a contention.

Quote:
Originally posted by candiland
Comparing a foot rub or a massage to sucking a breast is extreme. Following that logic, maybe the 11 year old can play with his mother's vagina because it is simply there for making and having babies?
Now, the vagina actually IS a genital. You cannot put feet and breasts in the same sexual category with the vagina. You said it, it is there for making babies. Its purpose is inherently sexual.

Quote:
Originally posted by candiland
why is any part of us sexualized then? All of our parts have totally anatomical functions unrelated to sex.
Intercourse actually is a primary function of the vagina.

Quote:
Originally posted by chemigogo
If not, do you actually not allow your partner to stimulate your breasts sexually?! What a crying shame, if you don't.
Yes, I allow my partner to stimulate my breasts, along with every other part of my body, during sex. Yes, it would be a shame if I had a hang up about using the same organ sexually that I use to feed my child.

Quote:
Originally posted by chemigogo
ALso, if breasts are not inherently sexual, and if you don't care about societal boundaries, why not go around topless, so your nurslings may have access to your breasts whenever they like?
That's a good idea. Why not? If we all went around topless, it would go a long way toward curing people of their hang-ups regarding breasts.

Quote:
Originally posted by chemigogo
And because my breasts are only meant for nursing children, I can let my children and other people touch my breasts at will, as if they didn't belong to me?
Certainly they belong to you, along with every other part of your body. It is entirely up to you which parts of your body you allow people to touch.

Quote:
Originally posted by chemigogo
it is ludicrous to say that breasts are solely meant as instruments of feeding/nurturing.
If you still think it's ludicrous then I guess I haven't gotten through to you.

Quote:
Originally posted by chemigogo
We do have to live in the world, and not turn people off sbf (a phrase I like, btw) by refusing to have any boundaries whatsoever when it comes to how we utilize our bodies, i.e. breastfeeding.
The whole point of SBF is that you don't set a boundary (assuming you mean an age limit?) for breastfeeding.
post #140 of 160
Quote:
Originally posted by Britishmum
going public with an 11 year old is not going to help the cause, but hinder it. It is just toooo radical for most people to handle
But it wouldn't be radical in the context of 100 other women going public about bfing 5-10 yr olds and 1000 other women going public about bfing 2-4 yr olds. It isn't this woman's fault that the not-as-extreme women haven't gone public, softening the way for her.
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