If you have an older child, do you still NIP? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 12:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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DS was 3 in September. I will still nurse in public if I must. I try to avoid it as I am starting to get nervous about other people. He insists on nursing before we leave daycare. We have always done this session and DS is very regimented. No one has ever said anything, and we do have a fairly private location.

Do you ever worry about being reported to child services (or whatever) for 'abuse' or whatever? I always thought that was ridiculous, but after reading about some woman in Washington who was reported by a photo processor for having bfing pics, and the normal bathtub pics, it's scary!
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#2 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 01:49 AM
 
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No, not really. I was already given some strange looks when he wasn't 1 yet because you really don't see kids nursing around here much more than about 3 months old, if at all. Compounding the issue was ds's size. His clothes size is usually about double of his age, if that helps give you an idea of his size. (at 1yo birthday, he was wearing 2T, now he just turned 3 and wears size 5-6) When I got the looks before I and could quote WHO guidelines and such, adding that he is *only* 1, or 2 or whatever he was, I would get some comments mumbled, but people left me alone. Since he is now out of the mentioned ages, I am a little more cautious since it is so far out of the norm around here. I already pushed the envelope quite a ways for this area, but I am to the point now that I would only do it in an emergency. I am actually starting to take him back to his room when he wants to nurse in front of extended family, and I have never gone to the other room to nurse before this point. I just know that I have long since pushed past their comfort level and don't want him to hear any comments.

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#3 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 02:33 AM
 
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Mine is 2 (25 mo) and I NIP all the time. At least as much as when he was a newborn. I don't worry and don't CARE what people think. I have yet to experience discrimination because of it, maybe it's because I exude "just try it!" or maybe it's because I'm in a progressive area?
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#4 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 03:20 AM
 
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Since DS turned 2 he's been very uninterested in NIP but up until then he did regularly, but not frequently. I've never gotten any negative feedback though. I think I thought about it more when he was about 18 mo and still nursing every 15 minutes! I have never worried about being reported until now! JK! Maybe I'm being naive but it just seems so ridiculous - it's not as if I have to force it! Or even suggest it! : Obviously those people didn't get enough boob time :LOL

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#5 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 11:04 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jennifer Z
No, not really. I was already given some strange looks when he wasn't 1 yet because you really don't see kids nursing around here much more than about 3 months old, if at all. Compounding the issue was ds's size. His clothes size is usually about double of his age, if that helps give you an idea of his size. (at 1yo birthday, he was wearing 2T, now he just turned 3 and wears size 5-6) When I got the looks before I and could quote WHO guidelines and such, adding that he is *only* 1, or 2 or whatever he was, I would get some comments mumbled, but people left me alone. Since he is now out of the mentioned ages, I am a little more cautious since it is so far out of the norm around here. I already pushed the envelope quite a ways for this area, but I am to the point now that I would only do it in an emergency. I am actually starting to take him back to his room when he wants to nurse in front of extended family, and I have never gone to the other room to nurse before this point. I just know that I have long since pushed past their comfort level and don't want him to hear any comments.
My experience is very similar. Lucy is HUGE for her age (54 lbs and 41 inches tall at 2 1/2 wearing a 6 or larger and an 11 1/2 shoe) so she looks much older than she is. She doesn't ask to NIP anymore but I will if she asks. I am probably a little more discrete about it but it depends on where I am. If she wants to stand and nurse at the in-laws, we go to another room. If she will lay in my lap, I will stay.
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#6 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 11:21 AM
 
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My dd will be three next month (oh goodness I just realized that!!), and has had an increase in frequency since a recent illness. She probably looks about 3.5 at least to most people, and is extremely verbal, so I think it throws people for a loop when she gives a longwinded explanation for how and why and where she needs to nurse. If we are in a store or whatever and she falls and gets hurt, then she runs up to me wailing "Nursy! Nursy!" And I wonder if people understand what she means... fortunately my sense is that the people who are most unfamiliar with breastfeeding *at all* don't know what she is asking for. Those who do think it's cute, lol.

This week is church I realized that I'm starting to feel a little funny there. It's a very socially progressive place, and I'm well-known so to speak, but for the first time i was a little self conscious, wondering if it would distract anyone. Mostly I figure it may help educate someone, who knows.

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#7 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 11:26 AM
 
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Jordan is 18 mos., but she is as tall as a 2 y/o. Even so, we still nurse in public. When I am shopping and carrying her in a sling, if she wants to nurse, I pop out a boob and feed her. Once I had a couplf of teenage boys snicker, but I really don't care. My priority is my little girl and not the reactions of on-lookers.

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#8 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 11:29 AM
 
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I continue to tandem nurse my 4.5 year old ds and 2.5 year old dd in public. We are all confident in our nursing relationship, confident that nursing is a natural and normal thing and see no reason not to NIP. Sure, I get strange looks upon occasion. I also have people come up to me to admire my kids or ask me a question and not even realize we're nursing.

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#9 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 11:58 AM
 
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We started slowing down in public at 3. Partly because of less interest on the part of ds and partly because of concerns of negative comments that he might understand... I admire the people that continue to NIP regardless of age though, because how else will it seem normal to others?
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#10 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 12:00 PM
 
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I don't hesitate at all to NIP up to 3 yo. After 3yo, I have not been as willing to NIP for several reasons. My kids haven't asked as much, so I don't have the opportunity as often. By three, they have other ways to cope with small traumas and hunger. My last three kids are spaced about 3 years apart, so when I am tandem nursing I find it awkward to hold my baby and nurse my toddler in most public situations, like sitting on a folding chair versus home on our comfy couch. It is often easier to divert or distract the toddler, or to satisfy hunger with a snack.

I do feel more vulnerable to negative comments nursing an older child in public. As Jennifer says, nursing a child over 3 is so unusual where I live, the sight does seem to push people to the point where they feel they have to react in some way. IMO it is a fine balance between meeting your child's needs and protecting them from negative criticism. But no matter what I CHOSE to do, I absolutely retain the right to nurse my child regardless of what others think.
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#11 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 12:07 PM
 
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DS is 2.75 and we have recently begun slowing the NIP. I still will, and do, but I'm more apt to try to distract him or have him wait if possible. There are some times and places where he just needs to nurse, though (recently, waiting at an airport gate because he hadn't nursed since morning and he needed to nap on the plane), and I am fine with that. I haven't gotten any negative comments.

I do try to plan ahead a bit; ie, if we're going to story time at the library I make sure I offer to nurse him before we go so that he doesn't want to nurse while hearing books (it's a rather Pavlovian response in him since he's used to nursing while I read books before bed).
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#12 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 03:06 PM
 
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Is it bad that I don't know when we stopped NIP? Dd basically 'day-weaned' herself around age 3, in that the only nursings she was still interested in were before bed, during the night, and within an hour of waking up in the morning. Before that, though, I know we didn't NIP for a few months, but I want to say that she didn't really ask. (Of course, I have massive pg brain now, and I could be mis-remembering... or maybe it's just that we didn't go very many places. :LOL ) Dd, however, picks up on subtle cues fairly easily - there was a time when my grandmother said something when dd was nursing right after she turned 2, and I swear that dd never asked to nurse in front of my grandmother after that.

I am anticipating, though, that this one may NIP longer, just because we're busier and have more places to go.

Kash, homeschooling mommy to Gillian (8/5/00) and Jacob (3/23/05)
and Brigid Eleanor (11/20/08)
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#13 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 04:55 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patchfire
Is it bad that I don't know when we stopped NIP? Dd basically 'day-weaned' herself around age 3, in that the only nursings she was still interested in were before bed, during the night, and within an hour of waking up in the morning. Before that, though, I know we didn't NIP for a few months, but I want to say that she didn't really ask. (Of course, I have massive pg brain now, and I could be mis-remembering... or maybe it's just that we didn't go very many places. :LOL ) Dd, however, picks up on subtle cues fairly easily - there was a time when my grandmother said something when dd was nursing right after she turned 2, and I swear that dd never asked to nurse in front of my grandmother after that.
I don't think it is bad! I had to really think about it for my post! I have found requests for NIP to be pretty rare after about 2.5 years old. But your story does illustrate my point about chosing your time and place, and protecting your child first. I am sorry that your daughter felt your grandmother's negativity. It is so tough to balance everything, so much easier when you are with people who could care less when your child has weaned.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patchfire
I am anticipating, though, that this one may NIP longer, just because we're busier and have more places to go.
Pretty much my experience. Tonight, for example, my 8 mo will be attending swim practice for dd followed by Tiger Cubs for ds1. If it went any later than 7 pm, I am sure the 3.5yo would need to NIP too.
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#14 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 05:08 PM
 
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I wish I lived in a world where I didn't have to worry about the repercussions of NIP. The main reason I avoid NIP is bc I don't want to deal with reactions, especially of people I know.

(But, if my ds really needed it, I would accomodate him).

I will NIP more readily in front of strangers than friends/family (unless the friend is also nursing a baby of any age).
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#15 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 08:38 PM
 
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While I still NIP DS (was 3 in August) I did stop nursing at DDs school. We are never there more than two hours in a row and I just decided this fall that we would not start up again (we did all last school year, but I didn't want to this sept-june so I started w/the "rule" that we don't nurse there.). I think I probably have nursed him there this fall, but no more than a couple times. It is a facility for homeschooling support for kids K-12 and I just didn't fell 100% about it this year, so I decided I would cut that out. That said--- we still NIP at friends houses, out and about, the library, zoo, science center, etc...

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#16 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 11:38 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plein_soleil
Do you ever worry about being reported to child services (or whatever) for 'abuse' or whatever? I always thought that was ridiculous, but after reading about some woman in Washington who was reported by a photo processor for having bfing pics, and the normal bathtub pics, it's scary!
The thought definitely crosses my mind. I also let my dd stay up late and am not a great housekeeper and have just one bedroom which we all share, so I occasionally have these nightmare scenarios. But rationally I think I'm pretty safe, since we live in New York City. (Where there are significant numbers of other people out there nursing 3yos and living in tiny apartments.)

Oye Yemaya oloto
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#17 of 21 Old 01-04-2005, 11:56 PM
 
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Do you ever worry about being reported to child services (or whatever) for 'abuse' or whatever? I always thought that was ridiculous, but after reading about some woman in Washington who was reported by a photo processor for having bfing pics, and the normal bathtub pics, it's scary!
To address this issue.

Honestly, I don't worry. Not because it doesn't happen, but because more often than not CPS (and it's sister organizations) are, when you get down to it, classist, and being middle class while w/ a professional husband, a pediatrician who supports us and a lawyer to call makes us pretty safe. It ticks me off, though, that things no one would second guess *me* on are enough to get my DH's "foster cousin's" kids put into foster care (has happened before). But *that* is another kettle o fish.

 

 

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#18 of 21 Old 01-05-2005, 02:19 AM
 
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Absolutely, nurse the big ones in public. My only rule, however, is that they're not allowed to pull at my clothes or pull up my shirt. Am not into exposure. If they try, we instantly get up and the nursing has to wait. Other than that ...

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#19 of 21 Old 01-05-2005, 06:07 PM
 
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My dd is 21.5 months old. She rarely asks to NIP (too busy, I guess). She did ask in church this past weekend, and I hate to admit that I took her around the corner, away from other church-goers. Why? I guess I felt uncomfortable about nursing her in church specifically, though I question whether I should have.

Anywhere else I'd do it, though.
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#20 of 21 Old 01-05-2005, 06:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by merpk
Absolutely, nurse the big ones in public. My only rule, however, is that they're not allowed to pull at my clothes or pull up my shirt. Am not into exposure.
this is why we no longer NIP. frankly, living in northern minnesota it really is cold enough most places to require a sweater and we're really only nursing now in bed. My tummy gets too cold without blankets.

Kristin -- mom of Erin (11/5/02) and Leah (9/29/05)
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#21 of 21 Old 01-07-2005, 10:52 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TiredX2
To address this issue.

Honestly, I don't worry. Not because it doesn't happen, but because more often than not CPS (and it's sister organizations) are, when you get down to it, classist, and being middle class while w/ a professional husband, a pediatrician who supports us and a lawyer to call makes us pretty safe. It ticks me off, though, that things no one would second guess *me* on are enough to get my DH's "foster cousin's" kids put into foster care (has happened before). But *that* is another kettle o fish.
This is a really important point, and it's why I'm actually inclined to push myself to keep nip if I start to feel uncomfortable. I want nursing to be normalized, ya know? so people who are less powerful are less vulnerable to being messed with by the state for doing what'sright for their family.

My dd is only 26 months, and I haven't felt uncomfortable nip so far. I think BIL was a little uncomfortable, :LOL but that's not my problem.
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