How do you wean? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 02-19-2003, 07:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My son is now 18 months and I am so ready to wean! I just can't take it anymore. We have had a beautiful nursing relationship up until recently. He just wants to nurse all the time and will not even let me leave his sight! He is super attached to me because I NEVER leave him.

I really feel that I need some personal space right now and being with ds 24/7 is making me resentful. We have so much going on right now - building a new house, trying to sell our current home, packing, etc. Maybe he feels the stress.

Anyway, I don't know how to wean. My ds can not go to sleep or even take a nap without a boob in his mouth. Sometimes he wants it left in his mouth the ENTIRE time he sleeps - my back is killing me from this!

How do I begin to set limits? I want my body back and I want him not to be so super attached to me. Please don't judge me - I had planned on child-led weaning but I just can't do this anymore.

Susan
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#2 of 4 Old 02-19-2003, 10:16 PM
 
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Well, I haven't weaned, and as it turned out, when I thought I wanted to wean I just really wanted to set some limits and cut back on the nursing. As soon as I did that, I felt relieved, like I had some control over my body after a long time without it, and that I had taken back a tiny bit of independence. Now that nursings are down to 2 per day (or fewer) I feel like I can go on until he wants to wean himself! (He's 2.5 years old). I guess the first limit I set was "only at home." I stopped nursing in public not because I was uncomfortable with it but because I thought it was a good way to cut out 50% of the nursings with one little rule for him to learn. He adjusted very quickly. I forget how, but I went from that to "Only when you first wake up," which automatically cut us down to 2 nursings per day: one in the early morning, and one after the nap. Now he takes a nap so rarely, and he knows the afternoon nursing is only for after a nap, so no nap, no nursing. That's kind of evolved naturally for us because he's getting older, so he needs fewer naps and less nursing. That, he totally understands. Good luck! Hope this helps in some way.
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#3 of 4 Old 02-20-2003, 03:31 AM
 
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I hope I can help a little bit...First off, I can say~ been there, done that!

There is a really good book called Mothering Your Nursing Toddler, if you have time to look at it, but you sound pretty busy.

Just some random thoughts...

It might help to think of weaning as not being an all-or-nothing situation. Maybe if you compromised (just cut back til it was workable for you) you would still have the best of both worlds.

What if you wean him and he *still* needs constant mommy-time? At least now you have an instant soother (snack, drink, get-to-sleep, fix-a-bump, sit-down and rest, etc). Will weaning *really* make it easier on you?

For your back, maybe try just watching how you sit/lay. Bring him to you, not you to him.

On setting limits... Try distraction and getting him to wait a little bit first, say he needs to get a drink of water first, leave lots of good snacks out, plan other activities, say he can nurse while you sing the ABCs or count to 10 and then he can nurse again later...

It is rough, I know. On the nap thing, there are some days my dd (also about 18 mo) just will not nap without me and I need to get something done (or just can't sit anymore!) I just get up and forget the nap. If she *needed* one, she would have been in a deeper sleep, and wouldn't have missed me, right? So far, so good with that. She has never got overly fussy or anything.

You are the mom, and you know best. If you really want to wean, just remember gradually and with love, and your baby is so much better off for all the breastmilk he already got!

(p.s. it is late, so I hope this is all coherent!)
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#4 of 4 Old 02-20-2003, 04:02 AM
 
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Hi! This is my first time posting here, so I hope it's okay.

Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that it's common for babies this age to nurse often. One reason is because they go through a growth spurt at 18 months. Also, they have separation anxiety around this age, but it often gets better pretty soon. I can't remember what age it is that it gets better, but I think it's commonly pretty soon after 18 months. Dr. Sears' has some info about that on his website. He really has some good tips for cutting back on all night nursing sessions, too.

It is okay to set limits and some good ideas have been mentioned. I hope you find something that works well for you and helps you not feel resentful. ((hugs))
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