Grandmother & Nursing? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 04-20-2013, 04:16 AM - Thread Starter
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I am a Grandma, my youngest child is 21. I have five children and successfully nursed all of them.  One of my sons is going thru a divorce, his wife is due to deliver their only child in 4 months.  My son will be having the baby half of the time, and I'll be watching the baby much of the time he has the baby.  The babies mother is very unhealthy, physically and mentally.  I would so much love to nurse this child and give the baby the best chance for a healthier life possible.  Has anyone ever heard of a Grandma who hasn't nursed a child in 20 years, nursing their Grandbaby?  Is it possible?  Is it probably?  Thank you for your time...

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#2 of 8 Old 04-20-2013, 08:10 AM
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Practical considerations aside, I would be beyond upset if my mother in law told me that she would be nursing my child when I wasn't there. As you know, having nursed your kids, it's an extremely special relationship, about food as well as comfort and connection. I'm nursing an 18 month old, I've donated my milk to my cousin and my sister in law, but I would never nurse someone else's baby without full disclosure and consent from their momma. Do you know if your daughter in law is planning to nurse? Did you ask her how she felt about you nursing her baby in her absence? Nutrition aside, the emotional aspects of this situation need to be considered as well...

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#3 of 8 Old 04-20-2013, 09:02 AM
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Absolutely no way is this ok. By all means give your grandbaby tons of love and attention while in your son's care but this would be completely inappropriate.
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#4 of 8 Old 04-20-2013, 12:57 PM
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Don't think it would be possible.
Would need lots of meds on your part for even a slight chance of making any milk, let alone producing enough to even make a dent in what the child would need.
If you were currently nursing, it might be an option with the mom's approval.
do have to laugh that I'm still nursing my youngest and my stepdaughter is giving birth today

mom to 14yr dd and 4yr dd
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#5 of 8 Old 04-20-2013, 01:33 PM
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Allomaternal Nursing.....also called allonursing is commonly provided by grandmother in some cultures (mother of course would be aware).

Page 18 of the following PDF is interesting:

I would imagine that you would only consider this with the support of the baby's mother.
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#6 of 8 Old 04-20-2013, 05:41 PM
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My friend and her mother were having babies at the same time and cross-fed.  I've heard of grandmothers relactating in the event of the mother dying.  Please obtain permission from the mother before doing this.  Maybe pumping and feeding might be an option?

SAHM to DS BuggaBoo blahblah.gif  12/07, and DD Doozer energy.gif03/10.  Sharing life with The Hubby since 01/05.

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#7 of 8 Old 04-20-2013, 06:14 PM
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It may be possible, but it's not probable, and under the circumstances, it may be an extremely bad idea. It could, for example, wind up discussed in court as part of a custody battle. Divorces can get very messy, and I would not assume that the mother would necessarily take your offer to breastfeed the baby as something offered purely in the baby's interest. I think you would be best advised to lovingly feed this child formula, or pumped milk from the mother, and leave it at that.
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#8 of 8 Old 04-20-2013, 09:08 PM
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The first time I heard my grandson cry, my breasts very nearly did the let-down thing. I felt a totally physical response, and I bet I would have relactated if I had let him nurse. Seriously.  I envy the grandmas in societies that support grandmothers nursing. I totally understand how the grand-maternal feelings can be as strong as the first time around.


Please be careful how you deal with these feelings. The new parents need to establish their own bonds, and truly this is more important than you (or me). If the Mom breastfeeds, she will probably know about pumping a bottle for times when she is away from her baby. If not, teach her. If she bottlefeeds, for whatever reason, that is her decision to make. Support your son in raising his child, but please let the parents be the parents. Love this baby with all your heart, but  keep the appropriate boundaries. This was a hard lesson for me to learn. I am relating this in the hope of making it a bit easier for you. Please don't take this as too preachy.

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Rhu - mother,grandmother,daughter,sister,friend-foster,adoptive,and biological;not necessarily in that order. Some of it's magic, some of it's tragic, but I had a good life all the way (Jimmy Buffet)

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