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11 YR old BF - Page 8

post #141 of 160
Quote:
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.
But it has happened...there was a woman whose 2-yr-old was taken away because the woman had called a hotline to ask if it was normal to have an orgasm while nursing. And there have been mothers on this board who were nursing children under 5, and had been threatened with legal action.

I wonder what happens if a woman has an orgasm while giving birth...does her child get taken? Some women even masturbate during labor...I had sex long after contractions had started! I sure hope that's not illegal, and I don't see how it reflects on me as a parent.

I am another one who rarely wears shirts around the house. Easy access is great! It's always a mad dash to find clothes whenever someone knocks on the door.

If we are to say that breastfeeding can be abusive at a certain age, why don't we say that lack of breastfeeding is also abuse, especially since nearly all women are able to bf but just choose not to? Lack of breastfeeding causes far more serious problems - sometimes life threatening, and yes even in the USA - than ebf does.
post #142 of 160
This thread seems to be nearly played out, but I'll put in one more word. I can agree to disagree. I do NOT think there should be a law against breast feeding at any age since it does get into privacy issues, and the legal bar would likely be set much too low (IMO). If someone wants to bring a complaint of abuse against this woman, it should be based on more than the simple act of SBF. I also see the merit of Devrock's (and others') argument that if we disagree with a cultural norm, we should define the norm as the problem rather than those who refuse to conform to it. Ultimately, I guess I'm not ready to disagree with the cultural norm in this case, though. (I am also not ready to say that BF an 11 year old is *always* wrong in every place and time, since I can't know every possible circumstance, but I have grave reservations. In this case, I am very troubled by the fact that the mother "brags" about it at work. That indicates to me that she may not have her child's best interest at heart.)

The one argument I've heard that I really don't agree with at all is that if a child wants to do something, he must have a legitimate and normal need. With regard to BF, this is certainly true of babies and toddlers. (Studies of biology and anthropology back this up.) Preschoolers and slightly older children may have a need as well, although sometimes their request to nurse may have as much to do with boredom as anything else. (I have heard this at many LLL meetings, so it *must* be true! ) But there *are* limits for everything, and in a few cases, the mother may need to take a more active role to help her child find ways to replace nursing as a coping strategy. Even in the animal world, you can see mothers taking a role in weaning. They will cut nursing sessions short, or refuse to nurse all together as their young approach or exceed the normal age for weaning. I'm not arguing against child-led weaning per se, I'm just saying that a mother's instinct and experience is as important and natural as a child's. A mother brings to the relationship her experience and wisdom. Not all children develop normally; physical, mental, and emotional problems *do* occur. They are usually not anyone's fault, but it's the parent's job to prevent these problems where possible and seek treatment for them when prevention is not possible. For example, a child's desire to wash her hands when they are dirty is normal and healthy, but if she starts "needing" to wash her hands 20 times a day, something is wrong. As a parent, I would be remiss if I simply gave in to this "need" without exploring what might be causing such unusual behavior. (This is an imperfect example, since excessive hand washing is *never* normal, whereas breastfeeding is *always* normal for infants. Someone earlier mentioned toileting, which may be a better example. I think the point is still valid.)

I stand by my opinion that BF and 11 year old boy in this (or any?) culture is unhealthy. Criminal? No. Bad or lazy parenting? Probably. Risky? Yes.

Oy. I've spent too much time on this debate - my house is a mess!
post #143 of 160
Once again, I'm nursing a 3 year old, haven't worn a shirt for 3 years now around the house for the most part. Have no body issues, am certainly not modest about nudity etc, am not conservative by any stretch of the imagination.

i just don't want the image of all those dissenting to be that of conservative, not comfortable with breasts people. Everyone I know has seen mine by now! Hunter pushed my shirt practically over my head to nurse for the most part.

So I am perfectly comfortable with breasts. Perfectly comfortable with other people's nudity, completely, but I still don't agree with the proposed scenario.

Once again just because I don't agree doesn't mean I demonize it either. Just don't really agree.
post #144 of 160
Quote:
Originally posted by Devrock



It should be. Breasts should not be taboo.

Quote:
Originally posted by gaffa
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
Yeah, I am thinking the same thing. I think that it would fall under the definition of harassment (to say the least), if just anyone felt it was appropriate to handle my breasts when they felt like being friendly to me.
post #145 of 160
Quote:
Originally posted by candiland
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.

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.
Well said.
post #146 of 160
Reading through the first 5 pages of posts did not convince me that nursing an 11 year old was acceptable behavior. Sure, it was said over and over (devrock) that if you draw the line at 11, then someone else might draw it at 2. I was like, oh no, *I'm* totally normal (DD weaned at 50 months, DS is nursing at 25 months). No one would think that about such a little child.

THEN a MDC momma came and said she thought 12-18 was good, maybe up to three. Whoa! Jump off the high horse (me).

I'm glad I kept reading, because I realized that I actually do think this could be a healthy behavior from a healthy child that will grow up to be a healthy adult. We need to remember that not everyone will fit within the average or norm.

Now, I personally would be worried in the situation if the mom seems to talk about it to everyone. If she mentions it at a LLL meeting? No, that seems appropriate. If she finds a way to bring it up in non related conversations at work? Makes me wonder why. Even if the child wasn't sexually mature at all, unless they are living in a cave, they probably know that nursing at 11 is not "normal." That doesn't mean they need to stop, but that *THEY* might want their privacy. When DD was nursing past 4 I didn't hide it, but I didn't bring it up either. I *knew* that people would view her differently (at preschool and such) if they knew that one tiny thing about her.

So, I guess in this situation that is my actual concern. If I had an 11 year old who sucked their thumb, used a pacifier, etc... I WOULD NOT make that public information. Sure, I think a lot of kids probably do suck their thumbs past "normal" ages, but I would be afraid of my child being embarrassed if other people knew. Like if I mentioned that at work and it got back to his school that he sucked his thumb he might be made fun of. Do I think that sucking his thumb *itself* will make him be a freak adult? No, but the public ridicule might.

Kay
post #147 of 160
OT (slightly), but I just wanted to add:

Breasts are not inheirantly sexual. This is a biological fact. They are actually no more sexual than the ears, elbow, whatever. They don't have extra nerve endings, nothing like that. There are many cultures that have *no* sexual attachment to breasts, and even some that do consider breasts sexually attractive don't use them in sex play. It is a western construct that has traveled, but still completely cultural.

Now, I personally enjoy the enjoyment of breasts in sex. BUT, I would also be happy being able to walk around without a shirt (in situations where men walk around without shirts) if it were physically comfortable (I think I might actually want a *little* support).

Kay
post #148 of 160
I too am rather "shameless" when nursing children. As I said before, I nurse anywhere and everywhere, and I know few toddlers/children who are discreet about it EVERYONE in my life has seen my breasts at one time or another.

But more on point, I find the concept of pre-teens nursing questionable at the least. Would I "report" a situation like that on its merits alone (I.e. nursing, but otherwise relatively "normal" dynamics), No. Would I give that situation more scrutiny and be more curious and watchful of that child (assume I have some sort of relationship with them)? Absolutely.

I can say that if I was nursing an older child (say over the age of 5 or 6), I certainly would not tell casual aquaintences (like co-workers and friends/family outside my intimate circle) about it. It would be a private decision between me and my child and family and I would never want to give anyone a way to shame, ridicule, or otherwise hurt my baby because we share a practice that is drastically outside the cultural norm...doesn't mean I would stop doing it to conform, but I certainly would advertise in a way that could bring harm to my child and our relationship,

If this situation is true, that that is what is most disturbing to me... She is not only putting herself up for scrutiny, but she is also putting her child up. And whose to say the guy she told doesn't have like aged children who will pass last night's dinner conversation on about "Bobby" nursing to his peers at school.

I guess that means I am not a crusader, and that is o.k. with me... I will not crusade at the potential expense of my children.
post #149 of 160
Chemigogo - thank you.

Just because my own personal comfort level is lower than most on this board does not mean anyone nursing a 3,4, 5 year old needs to worry I would report them to CPS. To me, there are reasons (because we live in the society we do) that it could have negative consequences (as well as the positive ones). I am not personally comfortable seeing an older child nursed but of course am free to not look.

I went to a "breastfeeding the older child" support group at a local hospital once years ago - it was advertised for moms with children over 6 months! Mine was about 10 months at the time and I was not sure when we would wean. A woman there nursed her 5 1/2 year old daughter (no, it doesn't make any difference in my thoughts on this if the child is a girl or a boy) multiple times during the one hour meeting - I never saw a "reason" (got hurt, tired, etc.) that was obvious to those of us at the meeting. No one said anything negative to her. I did not call anyone about it. But it did make me uncomfortable and I didn't go back. That is fine. Both her right to do it and mine to be uncomfortable I suppose.

But I agree with whomever said that we can support, find acceptable, whatever, a three year old nursing but find an 11 year old nursing to be unacceptable. It is not all or nothing. I am anti-drug and cannot imagine any circumstance that doing heroin would be ok but even though I would not smoke pot and find smoking pot to be a negative thing in general, I do know those who do for recreation and are perfectly wonderful people who are making that choice. I also can find it acceptable, even supported, to use pot during chemo treatments. I don't think you have to say pot is ok for everyone at any age/circumstance OR pot is never ok. I don't understand the "no lines" thing.

Devrock, you are obviously very skilled at debate. You have brought up some examples and analogies that did make me think/wonder about some of my views. So even though my opinions are radically different from your own, thank you for making some thought-provoking points.
Kirsten
post #150 of 160
Chemigogo - thank you.

Just because my own personal comfort level is lower than most on this board does not mean anyone nursing a 3,4, 5 year old needs to worry I would report them to CPS. To me, there are reasons (because we live in the society we do) that it could have negative consequences (as well as the positive ones). I am not personally comfortable seeing an older child nursed but of course am free to not look.

I went to a "breastfeeding the older child" support group at a local hospital once years ago - it was advertised for moms with children over 6 months! Mine was about 10 months at the time and I was not sure when we would wean. A woman there nursed her 5 1/2 year old daughter (no, it doesn't make any difference in my thoughts on this if the child is a girl or a boy) multiple times during the one hour meeting - I never saw a "reason" (got hurt, tired, etc.) that was obvious to those of us at the meeting. No one said anything negative to her. I did not call anyone about it. But it did make me uncomfortable and I didn't go back. That is fine. Both her right to do it and mine to be uncomfortable I suppose.

But I agree with whomever said that we can support, find acceptable, whatever, a three year old nursing but find an 11 year old nursing to be unacceptable. It is not all or nothing. I am anti-drug and cannot imagine any circumstance that doing heroin would be ok but even though I would not smoke pot and find smoking pot to be a negative thing in general, I do know those who do for recreation and are perfectly wonderful people who are making that choice. I also can find it acceptable, even supported, to use pot during chemo treatments. I don't think you have to say pot is ok for everyone at any age/circumstance OR pot is never ok. I don't understand the "no lines" thing.

Devrock, you are obviously very skilled at debate. You have brought up some examples and analogies that did make me think/wonder about some of my views. So even though my opinions are radically different from your own, thank you for making some thought-provoking points.
Kirsten
post #151 of 160
Kirsten, I 'm just curious at what age you would begin to call the police or CPS. You say that it's not 3,4 or 5, but you would call for an 11y/o BFing. At what age [i]would[/] you being to think SN warranted a call to the authorities?
Lauren
post #152 of 160
This may be kind of far-fetched, but please remember, when making comments about how that is child abuse and that is a bad parent, that some moms on this board may be nursing children of that age. Maybe not, but it's certainly a possibility. I know there are moms here nursing children as old as 7 or 8. They don't deserve to be ridiculed.
post #153 of 160
Of course no one deserves to be ridiculed, but I don't think stating my opinion about the topic at hand (I made a "bad parenting" statement, as did others) constitutes ridicule. Someone else made some comments about feeding junk food and other common practices being "abuse". I think most of this debate has been very civilized and reasoned. (I'm impressed with *all* of us! ) If someone here is bf an 11 year old and is offended by this debate, she is free not to read it, but debate of that topic *is* the subject of this thread.
post #154 of 160
Well, having caught up on this thread....I can feel my mental gears shifting just that little bit more.

Thank-you Devrock.

Count me in as one mom who has breastfed her then 3 year old in public. Now she's almost 4.5 and doesn't ask when we're out, her personal progression.
post #155 of 160
You know, I am LOL at the statement that I keep reading here over and over and over again - that there is "absolutely no evidence that any sort of abuse is going on." Um, there is absolutely no evidence that there isn't, either! Like a few have mentioned already, this is probably a hypothetical debate to begin with. So to assume that one would have evidence EITHER WAY is pretty funny.

I'm just stating that due to the LACK of evidence either way, there is probably something "wrong" with the mother or child. You go on and on about how it is SOCIETY that needs to change, not the mother and child... but society will NOT magically change in the next year or so. So this child *is* going to be drastically affected by our twisted society, whether we agree with this society or not! I'm not saying that mom and child are only doing this to prove a point to society... just that it is naive to think that our twisted society will not affect this child. I would never put my *own* child through that.

I do think that if we looked deeply into this family, we would probably find that there are emotional issues that cause the child to need to "nub" in the first place. If there are not emotional issues there now, there most likely will be issues later. I really agree that society's views of breasts and female sexuality is totally skewed, and it is the 11 year old that is going to pay for it in the long run because I can guarantee that this society will not magically transform itself overnight.:
post #156 of 160
It would be interesting to ask adults who were bfed this long as kids to tell us what it was like for them and if they regretted it, or if they suffered because of it. I know there are moms here who remember being nursed, and they speak positively about it.

People also claim that homeschooling will cause psychological harm, as will cosleeping, yet most kids who grow up this way report positive feelings about it.
post #157 of 160
I just wanted to ask a question. I bf my dd, she was not intrested in nursing after age 13mos. I never denied access, or did anything to premote her to stop, she just did. We still cuddled, and had a wonderful relationship. My ds, is now 20mos, and doesn't show any signs of stopping, which is fine. Well, here is my question, will all the parents that support ebf be dissappointed if there infant/toddler/preschooler self wean before the mother thinks they should?
post #158 of 160
Quote:
Originally posted by Mutherluv
IWell, here is my question, will all the parents that support ebf be dissappointed if there infant/toddler/preschooler self wean before the mother thinks they should?
I will be very disappointed if my son weans before he's 2 years old. I want for him to nurse for at least 2 years, and as long thereafter as he wants. If he stops before that time, I'm willing to pump my milk and give it to him in a sippy cup. I'd also keep offering the breast for a while, in case it turned out to be a nursing strike.
My mom says that I stopped nursing at about a year old. My brother went on to nurse for 2.5 years. My brother has no allergies, and I have TONS of environmental allergies. I hope my son doesn't have the same fate as I.

-Debi
post #159 of 160
Oh, and BTW, Devrock, I have enormous respect for your opinion and your ability to debate a topic such as this one. Even if I don't agree 100%, I can still see where you are coming from and I can see your side of the story.
post #160 of 160
Mod Note

This thread is being closed at the request of the OP. We both feel that it has done very well for 8 pages but that all the good that is able to come out of it already has.

~Stephanie~
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