This thread is dedicated to Moms who are EB older children - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 12:11 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello everyone, I thought it might be a good idea to start a thread for those who are practicing child-led and/or child-respectful weaning beyond toddlerhood. Let's keep this a safe haven where we can share ideas, concerns, questions and support for each other and continue this wonderful cyber-sisterhood that we have started on other threads in this forum (newcomers are welcome too!). Everyone is welcome here (to share and learn) but I ask that it remain respectful. Please refrain from any type of harrassment, negativity, debate or criticism towards breastfeeding an older child. We want all Mamas to feel safe here.

Let's start the thread by asking all EN Moms to write a short post just telling us that you are here and how old your EB child is. Strength in numbers, right? If you want to tell us more, or start a discussion, please do!

I hope this thread stays alive! The more the merrier!

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(nursing dd 6yrs 1/16/97)
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#2 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 12:24 AM
 
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Well, I don't know if I exactly fall into this category but I would like to! My dd2 is 2 1/2 years old. She nurses pretty much whenever she wants too. I have to limit her sometimes because of the new baby. I definately plan to do child led weaning. Some days are harder than others. I have support from a couple of good friends. She is the first of my children to nurse this long. I wish I had done it everytime.

Thanks for starting this thread!

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#3 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 12:27 AM
 
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Our son self-weaned at 5 yrs 1 month of age. I didn't start out intending this. I started out only focussed on that we Would nurse, and I'd do what I needed to succeed. Fortunately he took to it like a duckling to water, despite undermining stupid advice and a couple of small bottles of sugar water.

During his first year, I still hadn't pondered length of nursing, a friend sent me a copy of Mothering Magazine. I subscribed and learned about WHO's recommendation of two years minimum, and then about childlead weaning. Seeing no reason to push him to wean I decided we'd do childlead. We had a supportive enough ped until he turned 4, then fired the jerk we saw for his 4 yr check-up and left that practice--as the supportive ped already had...

DD, 4 in a month, is still nursing, still shares our room though that is being discussed. Main obstacle is what shall we do with all the stuff in the current computer room--which will be her room.

"What will you do once you know?"
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#4 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 12:33 AM
 
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Thanks for starting this thread.

My dd is 39 mos and nurses a few times a day. Sometimes once, sometimes 3 or 4 times. I am also nursing my dd #2 but I don't look at her as EN as she is only 14mos. I am pregnant with my 5th child and this is my 3rd time nursing through pg as well as my 2nd time tandem nursing through pg. I plan on letting my children wean when they are ready. My ds #2 weaned just before our last baby was born. It worked out great for me as I did not really want to nurse three but I would not force him to wean before he was ready. He did nurse a few times after the baby was born but just because he wanted to know he still could. I never denied him. I am not sure if Rachel will do the same thing (I doubt it) but as we have set limits on her nursing frequency, I am OK with the idea that she may continue to nurse after the baby is born.
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#5 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 01:02 AM
 
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Stephanie

I just wanted to say that you're hard core! I'm nursing my 2yo and I'm 8 wks pg and just in misery! I can't imagine nursing 2 kiddos! Good on ya!

To all the ladies here, great job! Keep on truckin'!

peace, Beth
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#6 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 02:21 AM
 
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Well my oldest nurser is 3 1/2. He still nurses all the time, I haven't counted lately, but I would be surprised if he ever goes 4 hours day or night, I would bet at least 10 times a day and 2 or 3 most nights. Breastmilk is still a large part of his daily calories, when he is hungry he usually asks to nurse not for food.

I am sure we have at least a year left probably two.
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#7 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 12:25 PM
 
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My oldest nurser is also 3.5 years old, although she nurses only at night time now (and when she is upset...).

I'm also pregnant - it's my first time tandem-nursing through a pregnancy...we'll see how it goes. I'm not thrilled about nursing 3, but since dd1 doens't nurse very often, I'm sure I can handle it if that's what ends up happening.
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#8 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 12:25 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Beth-TX
Stephanie

I just wanted to say that you're hard core! I'm nursing my 2yo and I'm 8 wks pg and just in misery! I can't imagine nursing 2 kiddos! Good on ya!
Beth, I have very easy pregnancies. Also, it does tend to get easier after the first 12 weeks. You are in the tough time right now. That is when I had to get Rachel to stop nursing 20 times a day. Literally.

Also, the decision to tandem nurse is very personal. Not everyone wants to do that. Don't feel bad if you don't.

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#9 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 12:26 PM
 
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Carolyn, I feel the Exact same way. If Rachel was still nursing constantly, I am sure I'd feel different about nursing 3.
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#10 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 05:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Meiri
I didn't start out intending this. I started out only focussed on that we Would nurse, and I'd do what I needed to succeed. Fortunately he took to it like a duckling to water, despite undermining stupid advice and a couple of small bottles of sugar water.

During his first year, I still hadn't pondered length of nursing, a friend sent me a copy of Mothering Magazine. I subscribed and learned about WHO's recommendation of two years minimum, and then about childlead weaning. Seeing no reason to push him to wean I decided we'd do childlead.
Meiri, the same thing happened to us, a couple of bottles of "necessary" sugar water (without my consent, before I knew better ) gave us a difficult start in nursing w/poor latch, torn nipples, extreme stress and recurring mastitis. If it hadn't been for the help of a generous LC (has anybody heard of Bonnie Bartman? ) we wouldn't have made it past the first 2 weeks. I wish our ped. was as supportive, she discouraged bf past 1 year, but that was when I stopped looking at Western medicine as "the law", so she actually helped me in that respect.

Unfortunately I hadn't heard of Mothering Magazine until dd was probably 3yrs (when I first got internet access) or that would have made a tremendous impact on me as a new parent. I was one of those mainstreamed new mothers who subscribed to all the mainstreamed parenting magazines (the ones they give "for free" in the hospital & the ones that are in the sweepstakes lists) and sat all day every day reading them in the rocking chair as my dd nursed all day long. I was one big contradiction of what I was reading...what I read was the complete opposite of what felt right. Lucky for us, I followed my instincts but not without a lot of frustration and heartache those first few years. I kept thinking "what is wrong with us?", when it really was "what is wrong with them"!

We also didn't set out to nurse a certain amount of time, actually I thought that babies automatically stopped at one year as that was the impression that the magazines and "What to expect.." books gave me. So we took it one year at a time and each year it felt more right to continue something so wonderful rather than forcing her to stop simply because "they" said so.

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#11 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 06:47 PM
 
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nak

errr...those 'what to expect' books push so hard for weaning at 1year it makes me sick.

Evergreen- Loving my girls Dylan dust.gifage8, Ava energy.gifage 4 and baby Georgia baby.gif (6/3/11).

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#12 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 08:32 PM
 
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I'm nursing Dd#1 (30months) and an 8 month baby.

DD is down to 2x day now. I can't say I enjoy tandem nursing and have to grit my teeth to nurse my toddler now.

I'd love her to wean - not much chance though - although I'd be really sad. I have initiated the cut back. If I folowed my ideal of child led weaning she'd nurse more than the baby. :

It reached the stage where I didnt want to sit down near her as she'd pounce. ouch. I feel sad and guilty, but the dislike of nursing her is so so so strong......:

I admire those who tandem nurse more successfully.
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#13 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 08:40 PM
 
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I'm nursing my only son, who is 2.5 years old. When he was born, I knew I would nurse, but I did not really have an idea of how long. I guess I have followed my intuition on this one. It has never yet seemed the right time to wean and, now, having gone so long, I have pretty much decided that my son will determine when it's the "right" time. He only nurses 1-2 times per day at this point.
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#14 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 08:48 PM
 
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I'm nursing my 3 1/2 year old and 15 month old. My 3 1/2 year old probably nurses 3-4 times a day but no longer at night. They are both still in my bed and I am really thankful that we are still nursing because dh and I are going through a divorce right now and I think it has been so helpful to my older child that he can still nurse. It has given him comfort and security during a very insecure time. Sometimes I really wish he would hurry up and wean but I also know that he is not ready yet. Nursing is so important to him. It's nice to know there are others out there committed to child-led weaning. All of a sudden in the last month or so several friends and family members have started asking me why I don't just wean him. As though it were that easy! I think extended nursing is very hard for people who haven't "been there" to understand. I can't exactly explain how impossible it would be for me to forcefully wean this child. It would break his heart!
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#15 of 520 Old 03-23-2003, 10:26 PM
 
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Britishmum, I can relate to the feeling of not enjoying the older one. I too have not followed the child led weaning. While I am not asking her to stop altogether, I did have to set limits. I had gotten to the point where I was actually starting to resent her. It was very difficult at first and probably not even very gentle. I would get very upset and flat out refuse to nurse her. Luckily this did not last very long. Now that she only nurses in the morning and at bedtime, I am totally fine with it. There are days when she doesn't feel good when we can nurse a bit more but she also understands if she just asks because she is bored, she will have to wait until bedtime. I plan on letting her nurse as long as she wants but not as often as she wants.

Nursing is a couple relationship. When one part of the couple is no longer comfortable with the situation, it is time to make a change. Good luck to you.
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#16 of 520 Old 03-24-2003, 03:10 AM
 
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Hello moms, I am a very proud mom of a girl who self weaned at 5 1/2. years. Letting her choose when to stop gave her lots of confidence in herself. I have to admit I was always a little nervous to just go with the flow(pun intended) but I trust my daughter and she taught me to trust myself. I am grateful that our nursing relationship lasted for so long. DD had her first major ear infection and upper resp. infection after she weaned. If only I could still provide her with those same antibodies forever! Cheers.
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#17 of 520 Old 03-24-2003, 03:43 AM
 
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My olderst just turned 4 on the 6th, he shows No signs of stopping anytime soon! He really picked up when the baby came along...I figure he wants to be there with the baby or he doesn't want her getting one up on him, lol. He nurses more often than I'd like...I guess nursing two I just get *touched out* sometimes.

I never thought I'd nurse this long, I was one who thought I'd nurse for 6 weeks then go back to work. I didn't go back to work, set a new goal for 6 months...then a year. Finally I stopped setting goals and here we are!
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#18 of 520 Old 03-24-2003, 03:44 AM
 
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I am tandem nursing my 2 1/2 yr old and my 6 month old. I believe in child led weaning and I don't think my toddler will wean anytime soon. She nurses more than the baby. I hope she does wean around age 4 though, as I would like to have another baby someday and really don't want to tandem nurse through pregnancy.

Adria
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#19 of 520 Old 03-24-2003, 03:13 PM
 
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Hi, ladies. Thought I'd chime in here.. . esp. since DD actually "nursed" out of the blue again today. First time in like a month or longer.
She was 6 in January, and is VERY attached...really needs this anchor to go out into the world. I am happy to give it to her.

Let me also take this moment to salute all you long-term tandem nursers. That is a hard job for many.
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#20 of 520 Old 03-24-2003, 07:06 PM
 
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My dd turned 4 yesterday,she is just this week getting busy & preoccupied playing ,learning,etc & cutting down to 4-5 times a day & a couple at night -early am.
It happens so gradually & is ok with me .
I am so glad to be nursing her when she gets a stomach virus & can not eat foods.I can give her the best antibodies through me.

This is my 3rd EB child so this not new to me .#1 weaned at age 4 1/2 ,# 2 weaned at age 5.

So glad for the support here-I know no one in my area nursing older than 3 year olds.

::
momma to 4
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#21 of 520 Old 03-24-2003, 10:50 PM
 
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Mine weaned at 5.8 years and I never intended on nursing much past the age of 2. She weaned in June and has had an ear infection (healed now but still on the meds) and was talking a lot about nursing the last week. She didn't actually nurse but came very close.

All is back to normal, she feels better and hasn't talked about nursing the past 2 days. She is now 6 1/2 years old.

She is very independent and very loving toward everyone. I think she turned out preety good
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#22 of 520 Old 03-24-2003, 11:19 PM
 
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Hi everyone..
This is a great thread and I love to read all about other child led weaning mothers and their nursing journeys....thanks so much Mother sunshine for this post.....

I am nursing my 34 month old ds.
He is nursing some days more than others, but always before bedtime, while we read books, and during the night. He nurses when he is tired, upset, or ill and at times too if he is hungry he would rather nurse than eat....
I still nip and have no issues doing so and his conversations with me now about nursing have really assured me that we are doing what is best for us.

I was one of those who said I will only nurse for 3 months and then when 3 months came, I will only nurse for 6 months and once we hit 1 y/o...I said forget it...this is so peaceful and makes parenting a lot easier....he will wean when he is ready...
...and can I just add that I have the most supportive dh and how thankful I am for him

Free To Be~
Traci
"Living is learning and when kids are living fully and energetically and happily they are learning a lot, even if we don't always know what it is."
~John Holt 

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#23 of 520 Old 03-25-2003, 02:17 PM
 
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Hi all you mamas I'm nursing my 3 y.o. I have to admit that right now I'm struggling with child-led weaning. I feel like mostly I"m DONE but somehow I never get around to insisting on it :LOL

I weaned my first son at 2.9 when I was 7 months pregnant- I just couldn't get through those last two months (it was ugly) so I'm hoping to go further with ds2. It's hard, though. Dh wants me to wean (not because he thinks ds is too old but b/c he sees how hard it is for me).

For you mamas who have made it all the way to child-deciding when to wean and for you who tandem nurse... If any of you have ideas on how to keep going when you're at the end of you resources, feel free to share!!!
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#24 of 520 Old 03-25-2003, 09:48 PM
 
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I managed to struggle through nursing while pg, and when dd was born, ds was wanting to nurse all the time, after he had been down to once a day. While I appretiated having somone to take the extra milk, I started really resenting having him ask to nurse while I was doing other things. Like it wasn't enought to have to stop what I was doing to nurse the newborn, now my 3 1/2 y/o expected that of me too?! I don't think so. I really had to hold back, it made me feel really angry at times (post partum emotions too).
But we have leveled off pretty well. Now ds nurses in the morning. The only drag is that he is waking up so much earlier than he used to. And also, we are dealing with him being rude to me in the mornings. He will yell angrily or kick me if I don't wake up right away to nurse him. That is a problem for me because nursing is really personal and intimate, and I won't let myself be used by someone who isn't respecting me. I have communicated all of this to him and it is getting better.
I don't know when he'll be done for good, probably not for a while yet.
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#25 of 520 Old 03-26-2003, 12:32 PM
 
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Britishmum and tnrsmom - I can so relate to not enjoying nursing an older child. I really dislike the sensation of my 3.5 year old nursing these days.

I can date my own personal irritation with nursing dd1 to the middle of December - when I got pregnant (but about a month before I found out I was pregnant) - so I think it must have something to do with pregnancy hormones. Funnily enough, though, it doesn't bother me at all when dd2 nurses (she is almost 2).

Luckily, dd1 only really nurses at night...only very occasionally during the day. And I've also been lucky in that she's dropped the morning and daytime nursings herself without encouragement from me (that I've been aware of, although maybe she's picked up on some of my feelings?).

At night, I time it - I make sure I let her nurse for at least 5-6 minutes. I just don't let myself stop before then (although sometimes she'll pull off earlier herself, which is always nice!).

I figure that it's only 5 minutes of irritation for me, and it's really important to dd1. I can't imagine forcing her to stop nursing, you know? It just wouldn't feel right.

I'm sorry to hear, though, Britishmum, that it's still difficult 8 months later - I was hoping things had gotten easier for you. I guess I also was hoping that my own negative feelings would ease up (they always have in the past, but not this time)...

Ah, well - it's still worth it. As much as I personally would like dd1 to wean before #3 arrives, it does make me sad as well, as I know how important nursing is for her, and I like that she continues to receive the benefits of at least some breastmilk each day...
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#26 of 520 Old 03-28-2003, 04:27 AM
 
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Thanks Carolyn - it was so helpful for me at the start to know that others felt the same.

I can handle our 2x day now but they are very short. I just couldn't physically handle 5 mins - I admire your grit! Dd is ok with it now, and I like to think that she's forgotten the trauma of the first couple of months.

I want to cry if I think of her weaning, but I long for her to wean. : But at least I don't feel angry at her now we've cut out the daytime nursing.

I wonder also what I'll do if we have another baby in a year or so. Dd #1 will have to wean beforehand, and I dont know what I'd do about dd#2..........
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#27 of 520 Old 03-29-2003, 12:07 AM
 
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I am no longer EBing an older child (DD weaned earlier this month at 50 months and DS is only 18 months) but just wanted to give a big to all the mommas with "older" nurslings!

Kay

 

 

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#28 of 520 Old 04-02-2003, 12:51 AM
 
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Hi Everyone! My name is Marcia and I am a mom to 3,but Littlebit is the first for me to BF.I wish so much that I would have nursed the other 2.I was 15 when I had my first and really didn't even think about it.BUt with my second I had really wanted to BF,but I had to have emergency kidney syrgery while I was pregnant and I was told I would be unable to BF because when he was born they would have to do more tomy kidneys.I wish I would not have listened to them.I have had the same thing done 4 times to my kidneys since I have had Littlebit and never had to stop nursing.Littlebit is almost 37 moths old and still nurses 10 times a day and a couple of times at night.I never knew how long we would nurse.No one in my family had ever even thought about nursing and thought I was insane to even try it.
All I knew was we were going to do.I didn't care what everyone else thought.We have been told by so many people to stop breastfeeding,but we never listened.Littlebit has been really sick from the start.HE spent some tome in the PICU and has had 5 surgeries for different things. And I have had 4 kidney surgeries.We were in a really bad auto accident too.BUT he never had to have a bottle.I think all that we have been through has made us alot closer and stronger.I still don't know how long he will nurse but I am leaving it up to him.I still don't care what others think I know I am doing what is best for me and him.My DH and older kids have always been such supporters of my BF.I love them all so much.I love our Nursing so much too.
I am sorry if this got to long.
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#29 of 520 Old 04-04-2003, 06:26 PM
 
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You mamm's rock. My "baby" is going to be three in 10 days. She nurses at story time at night and sometimes in the morning. She says s"he loves it!"
I thought she weaned herself earlier this week, but she just forgot to have her numma numma's!!!
Here's to all the nursing mamma's!!!!
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#30 of 520 Old 04-04-2003, 09:08 PM
 
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I'm Laurie - new to the forums this week - and EB my DD (18.5 mos). We plan to let her decide when to wean and at the rate she nurses it isn't going to be anytime soon!

We are going to start ttc#2 next month and I really hope she doesn't wean once we do get pg. I think the greatest thing would be to tandem nurse (hope I'm not crazy for saying that)!!!
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