DS is about 2.5 years old, and we're still happily nursing 3-4 times a day. I love that we've made it this long, and am happy to keep going as long as he wants to. However, there are a few things that make me wonder if I should think about maybe cutting back his nursing - so I'd love to hear from other moms who are/have done extended nursing.
1) We've been TTCing for a year now, and no luck. I'm quite sure I'm ovulating, based on charting. My cycles are regular. My luteal phase may be a bit short. We got PG with DS on the first try, so I suspect that breastfeeding is preventing PG right now. I'm not too concerned, I have a feeling that a bigger gap will be better for DS. However, I'm nervous that if he's still nursing when he's 4 or 5 and I'm still not PG, I'll be a bit upset. Who knows, but that's one issue.
2) He usually nurses upon waking, and often falls back asleep. It's very easy to have our schedule shift later and later, to the point that he sleeps/nurses until 9 or 10am, and then is up until midnight. It would be easier if I could wake him up at a regular time in the morning (say 8am), and our day could consistently start then. Again, i'ts not a big deal, but I find it hard to maintain a reasonable wake-up time, because he just nurses back to sleep if he's not ready to be up, and that pushes naptime and bedtime back.
3) He nurses to sleep for both naptime and bedtime, and it's basically the only way he falls asleep, unless he's in a stroller or car. So it's a bit limiting for me, since I have to be the one to get him to sleep. It's rarely a problem, and I don't mind, but it would be nice to have the flexibility to go out in the evenings sometime and not have to stress about DH trying to get him to sleep, or getting him back to sleep if he wakes up.
Anyways, these aren't huge issues, but they are just things that have crossed my mind lately. So anyways, I guess my questions are - did you or your child determine when to cut out nursing sessions (like first thing in the morning, for example)? If your child only nursed to sleep for a long time, when did they develop the ability to fall asleep on their own? Did that happen when they stopped nursing, or did you continue nursing after they could fall asleep on their own?
I have absolutely no problem nursing him until he's 5, if that's what he wants. However, I guess I'd just like to know how the nursing relationship would potentially change over the next 2-3 years, if he continues nursing. If you did decide to cut down on the nursing sessions, how did you do that? I know that DS mainly nurses upon waking or to go to sleep - he's usually quite grumpy during those times, and so I can't imagine that a suggestion to do something other than nursing would go over well
The odd time that I've had to say no, he's pretty much had a meltdown. So anyways, I can't imagine how it would happen - other than him just deciding not to nurse when he wakes up or when he wants to go to sleep. I guess that's child-led weaning, right?
Thanks very much for any comments!