Reasons to continue? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 01-29-2003, 12:02 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm really at odds with myself right now. After nursing my first dd for 4 years, nursing through pregnancy and tandem nursing - all on one boob I might add (I have a hypoplastic breast) I am considering early weaning of dd#2.

I know it's not fair, but she is 13 mos old and I just don't want to nurse anymore. It's nothing against her, I just feel like I have to scrape my kids off me to have some personal space. I would love to nurse her until she is ready to quit, but if it means another 2 or more years I don't think I can do it. I don't want to fight over my boob and feel resentment towards my dd. Maybe I have been nursing for too long? I don't know, maybe it's just lack of sleep. I just can't stand the idea of my dd#2 attached to my boob any longer.

All I can remember about why I kept nursing dd#1 was that it seemed easier than weaning and I was so afraid of causing permanent damage if I made her wean before she was ready. It was really a beautiful moment when my dd#1 decided she was done. It was right before her 4th birthday and she was so proud of herself. There was no crying or yelling, just love and extra cuddles. I would love to repeat that with dd#2, but 3 more years of nursing makes me cringe!

The only great thing I enjoyed about nursing during the toddler years was how easy it helped dd#1 get over her tantrums. But that can't be the only reason I continue to nurse. I need something else.
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#2 of 5 Old 01-29-2003, 12:41 PM
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Reasons I tell myself (tandem nursing a 3 yo and 1 1/2 yo)

- It is still the best nutrition, even for a 3 year old.

-They are almost never sick, and when they are it is mild.

- I believe that humans are supposed to nurse until at least 2, that is what they biologically expect.

-It is one of my great mommy tools, for calming fears, easing hurts, getting a few minutes to talk on the phone.

-My kids nurse to sleep--with the book light on!!! So to put them to sleep I just lay in bed a read, I don't think it would work if I wasn't nursing.

- I am lazy, it is easier to nurse then and sit somewhere and know what they are doing, then wonder who is throwing things in the toilet, or climbing up on the window sills, or playing in the fridge.

-When their needs are met they will stop. Everytime I have tried to change nursing patterns, it was either so easy- like actually having dinner ready at the same time so they ate instead of nursing all evening, or it has been a battle and they alway hold out longer than I do. So at that point I have decided that their needs are more than my need to stop.
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#3 of 5 Old 01-29-2003, 01:05 PM
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I have only 1 11 month old dd, so I don't claim to have any real idea what you are going through, but you sound TIRED. Is DD#2 still nursing alot at night? Maybe you could night wean, rather than weaning altogether. I feel like all parenting challenges seem easier, when I'm better rested.

You sound like a great mom. It's ok to consider your own needs in this decision.

Trying to get my bearings...
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#4 of 5 Old 01-29-2003, 11:02 PM
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I say that if it isn't working for you any more, why not stop a little earlier than planned? DS nursed for 19 months and it just got so uncomfortable during pregnancy that I had to stop. And it wasn't a bad situation. It was done with love and out of necessity. There were never any tears about it, just a change in the routines (more distraction, DH doing a bedtime routine, etc). DD is now 13 months and I don't know how much longer I'll be able to do this. Maybe today was just a stressful day, but I feel like I am just being sucked dry, literally and figuratively. I need some distance, some personal space, my body left alone.

There are good reasons to nurse, you already know that. But you don't want to start resenting the baby over nursing. What is going to make you a good mother? If it's weaning, then look into how you can do that lovingly.
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#5 of 5 Old 01-29-2003, 11:41 PM
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My best concrete reasons are immunities, nutrition (at a time when it is hard to get them to eat much), and reduced orthodontia. Add to that further reducing your risk of breast cancer.

However, I'd add that maybe some kind of limits will help you last longer and be happy. Have you night-weaned? Can you get some kind of part-time child care so there are at least some hours a day when you know you won't be nursing?

Kudos to you for lasting so long with one boob!
mom to nurslings Emily (3.3) and Hazel (6 months)
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