Does it make you sad when you hear a mom is weaning at 1 year? or earlier? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums
1  2
Child-Led Weaning > Does it make you sad when you hear a mom is weaning at 1 year? or earlier?
runes's Avatar runes 08:36 PM 04-28-2007
yes, it makes me sad to think that babies are being weaned at such an early age due to the mother not receiving support to continue to nurse as long as mutually desirable. it's not the fact that they're being weaned so young that bothers me so much as that this society does not honor mothers and babies. our culture is so mired in 'independence' that we push our babies to grow up so quickly. it is also dismissive of the bond, nurturing and health benefits of nursing. our children are growing to be fatter, sicker with chronic illnesses and issues with attachment and bonding. yes, a broad generalization, but i do believe this attitude towards mothers and babies is the root of a lot of society's ills.

every time my 18 month old dd latches on, i feel like i'm helping to make this world a more peaceful place.: and yes, i do wish that ALL mothers received the kind of support from society at large in order to continue nursing past the first year. a girl can dream, can't she?



katheek77's Avatar katheek77 10:13 PM 04-28-2007
Disclaimer: This is going to be colored by my personal experiences...

I'm impressed if someone breastfeeds or pumps for a year. It has been a struggle for me to get this far. Hell, I applaud anyone who makes it to their goal, be it six weeks, six months or six years.

We have had to supplement from six days old (valid and necessary...no flames please...we tried EVERYTHING, and, after reading another post and seeing some photos, I suspect I may have type I tuberous breasts, but I need to research that more...just a lot of physical and breastfeeding problem coincidences). I bought a double electric pump. Well, of course, after the supplemental bottles, my daughter liked them MUCH more than Mommy's breasts (I have slow let-down, and really, why would you suck for two minutes for a little bit of milk when you could get as much as you wanted immediately). She weaned herself/rejected the breast at three months from nursing.

She's almost ten months, and I continue to pump, pumping every 3-4 hours. I get about 10-12oz a day. The MOST I ever got was 14oz, and that was pumping for 30 minutes every hour, on the hour, round the clock, which, I'm sorry, is NOT feasible for me for more than a couple of days of insanity.

At one year, I WILL cut down to twice a day, and then reassess my goal. The "stress" (not exactly, but I guess that's a close enough approximation) of ALWAYS, at a certain time, having to be home or have the pump with me, making sure I have batteries (if I'm in the car), etc. wears on me. Maybe I'm selfish; fine. I have had the choice from day one to go completely to formula which may have been more convenient, which may have been easier. I could have starved my child to fulfill my need to be "the perfect mother" (it was actually my very crunchy, pre-schooler-breastfeeding best friend who brought me to my senses on this one), which, obviously, I wouldn't do. But, in the end, I made the choice to try for six weeks. And when I got there, I went for three months, and she weaned, so, it was exclusively pumping then...then six months (the new year...very convenient)...then nine...now I'm shooting for twelve. But, to be honest, I'm very worn out on the whole pumping thing. And, according to kellymom.com, only 17.2 percent of babies are getting ANY breastmilk at twelve months...so, I'm okay with scoring an "83%" or whatever on this issue.

I don't think it's good to SUDDENLY stop and just tell the baby, no more!, ...but, if a mother wants to implement gradual weaning, even if parent led (it's supposed to be MUTUALLY desired), I'm not going to villify her for her choice. I don't have a problem with people breastfeeding when their child's a pre-school, I don't have a problem with people decidingto stop if they feel it's time. There are many ways to nurture you child, and breastfeeding is only one of them.
ulla's Avatar ulla 03:42 AM 04-29-2007
No, I don't feel sad at all. Each mother decides what is right for her and her baby based on her own unique situation. I think that since its none of my business, anyway, it's also not productive for me to dwell on how other people arrive at their decisions.
ShadowMom's Avatar ShadowMom 03:12 AM 04-30-2007
It does make me sad to hear moms talk about breastfeeding myths as if they're true... you're just "supposed" to wean at a certain age, so they do... stuff like that.

I think most women wean early not because they are making an informed decision (that wouldn't really bother me as much) but because they don't even realize that they have a choice - and that they SHOULD have a choice. It's like our society has made the decision for them, and with such poor information.

It also makes me realize what a huge gulf that is between me and normal people. I mean, I'm still nursing a 3 year old! What a freak I am in our culture.
coolbabymama's Avatar coolbabymama 01:51 AM 05-11-2007
This is the type of post that makes me feel judged from all sides. My son is going to be a year old in two weeks, and I am trying desperately to cut back on some of his feedings. Most people are amazed that I've breastfed this long, but I come to this site (or La Leche's) and I'm made to feel like I'm selfish for wanting to wean after ONLY one year. As such, I find very little guidance and support. Most conventional books/websites only deal with weaning to a bottle at 3 or 6 months, and here it's more like 3 years. Sorry, but I do not wish to do either and it has nothing to do with what society says I'm supposed to do. I'm going to hazard a guess and say that most women who breastfeed for an ENTIRE year are hardly going to be swayed by public opinion on the subject. Personally, I think it's just as important to be able to read and interact with my child, and I can't do that when I'm burned out and physically exhausted. My son is very demanding, 24 hours a day. I am beyond tired, in pain (back and tailbone from feeding at night in bed) and have not had a break aside from the odd haircut or dentist appointment for an entire year, as he would never take a bottle of my milk (of course, I'm sure I'll get flamed for wanting to give him a bottle too). I had mastitis, lipase issues, sore and cracked nipples, the list goes on. But here I am defending myself when I really shouldn't have to. Perhaps I'm feeling a bit sensitive because I haven't slept in about a year and a half!
Liliana's Avatar Liliana 08:49 PM 05-11-2007
I don't think the original question was about judging people's decisions. I think it's about knowing that some moms are pushed into weaning before they or their kid is ready. It's also just having an emotional response to people doing things differently. The early parts of breastfeeding are hardest. Many moms and kids never get to the easy parts (for many different reasons). I see that they will miss out on the joys of nursing a talking child. I'm sure some people see me lugging a diaper bag, baby in sling, trying to carry my 4 year old to the car and think "wow she's missing out. she really needs a good double stroller". We all feel bad for people who don't have the experiences that make mothering easy for us, but those things might not make mothering easy for others. (I hate strollers, and so do my babies.)
steph76's Avatar steph76 09:06 PM 05-11-2007
What is sad is that so few people realize that it is OK to nurse past a year.

I know people who really wanted to continue but due to family/society pressures quit on the first b'day.

To be honest that would be me had I not found out more info. online.
sunanthem's Avatar sunanthem 11:18 PM 05-11-2007
Nope I'm not sad. I cut my first one off at 14 months, my second, whom I had to supplement with from 2 weeks, I cut off at a year. It is very draining and tiring for me breastfeeding so long, especially with a 2 and a half year old to chase after at the same time. I just didnt want to do it anymore. And when mama's done, she's DONE.

I do feel a little bad though for moms who dont even try to breast feed at all because their moms and doctors tell them not to.
crystaldawn's Avatar crystaldawn 12:39 AM 05-12-2007
I do feel sad when babies are weaned at a year. They're still babies at one. I am also sad when I hear people say things like "I'm only nursing til the baby gets teeth" or "until I go back to work" I'm not saying that I judge a person because of it but it does make me appreciate the support I got breastfeeding. My dd self weaned at 15 mos and that made me sad. So, maybe I just remember how I felt and it's not so much about the other person at all

As a note about our pediatrician at my dd's 12 mo appt I said I was still nursing and told her that we had tried to cut back on nursing thinking that's what she wanted me to be doing... and she said that she nursed her youngest until she was 2.5!! I have to say that I was truely impressed with this career woman with 5 kids still nursing well into the toddler years. I often use her as an example when I hear people talk about weaning...
_betsy_'s Avatar _betsy_ 12:49 AM 05-12-2007
While I'm happy the babies received the benefits of BFing for any length of time, it does make me sad - for BOTH mama and baby - when I hear a mother say "She self-weened at 8 months (or 9 or 10 or whatever), and I was so sad to lose that special time with her."

Makes me wonder if it was a nursing strike, and if both baby and mama would have been happier if they had tried to make it work a bit longer.

When a mother says they are sad about losing that relationship, then I am sad for both her and the baby.
SunRayeMomi's Avatar SunRayeMomi 01:10 AM 05-12-2007
I felt sad when a highschool friend got in touch with me and asked me (a day before her daughter's first birthday) what the easiest way to wean to whole milk was. She had stopped breastfeeding at three months, I'm not sure the reason there, but I thought in my head that if she was still nursing she wouldn't have to wean to cow's milk at all. Ever. But I kept that to myself since it wouldn't apply to her. I didn't have an answer for her though

The things that make me sad aren't when a child is weaned or if a child is ever breastfed, but why. It's often because of being uninformed or misinformed, and THAT is what makes me sad.
sillymommaX2's Avatar sillymommaX2 12:42 AM 05-13-2007
It doesnt make me sad. I am just happy that they made it to one year. Everybody has to do what they think is right for their own family.
rainymorning's Avatar rainymorning 04:43 PM 05-13-2007
i do feel sad. and i can't do anything about it, about feeling sad, i mean.
Meredith&Alexander's Avatar Meredith&Alexander 05:52 PM 05-13-2007
Maybe a little, but I've learned not to dwell on it. Not my body, not my baby, not my choice.

But when a baby isn't weaned at a year, I'm thrilled.
pixiepunk's Avatar pixiepunk 06:00 PM 05-13-2007
i'm really surprised at some of the responses in this thread. i mean, this is the child-led weaning forum. so i'm imagining that the OP was probably assuming that those reading here were those who were dedicated to CLW, or at least extended nursing. i'm especially surprised by this:

Quote:
Everyone does things differently. I think nursing after a certain point in a childs life is wrong. I am not going to go pass judgement on that person, to each his own.
i don't mean to sound snarky, honestly, but why are you in a CLW forum if you not only are not intending to CLW but in fact seem to feel that past a certain point it is "wrong"? this is supposed to be a forum where people interested in CLW can come to find support and help.
sasshell's Avatar sasshell 07:32 PM 05-13-2007
I for one cannot wait to wean DD. And it does make me sad.

I don't know why-but for some reason I've never gotten the warm fuzzies everyone told me I would when seeing my babe at my breast. I'm mentally exhausted, sick of being sucked on, tired of leaky breasts and tired of hearing the whine DD has reserved just for me when she wants to nurse. I despise being her sole source of nutrition.

I feel extremely overwhelmed with guilt for me dislike of BFing, but I can't bring myself to give her a bottle of formula. I can only wonder if I was meant to be a mother considering I am completely lacking the tolerance to BF. I just soldier on only knowing I would never forgive myself if I ever gave her a bottle of artificial baby milk. I am grateful I was given the tenacity to stick with it, even though I am so miserable.
ShadowMom's Avatar ShadowMom 08:28 PM 05-13-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by sasshell View Post
I for one cannot wait to wean DD. And it does make me sad.

I don't know why-but for some reason I've never gotten the warm fuzzies everyone told me I would when seeing my babe at my breast. I'm mentally exhausted, sick of being sucked on, tired of leaky breasts and tired of hearing the whine DD has reserved just for me when she wants to nurse. I despise being her sole source of nutrition.

I feel extremely overwhelmed with guilt for me dislike of BFing, but I can't bring myself to give her a bottle of formula. I can only wonder if I was meant to be a mother considering I am completely lacking the tolerance to BF. I just soldier on only knowing I would never forgive myself if I ever gave her a bottle of artificial baby milk. I am grateful I was given the tenacity to stick with it, even though I am so miserable.
*
natashaccat's Avatar natashaccat 08:49 PM 05-13-2007
I do feel bad when there is misinformation involved. With my first I was one of those moms who thought that I was doing something wrong because my dd wasn't sleeping through the night and was still nursing so intently at 1 yo. I followed my instincts and continued to nurse and did not CIO but my attitude was conflicted.

Weaning because you think you are supposed to is different than weaning because it's something you have to do in order to otherwise meet their own needs and the needs of their other children.
thismama's Avatar thismama 08:58 PM 05-13-2007
Okay, yes. I do feel sad. I don't feel sad for babes whose mamas attempted nursing but it didn't get off the ground (this happens often IMO due to the layers of barriers to bf). I also don't really even feel sad for babes who are ff and bf was never attempted. Or maybe I do a little.

But the babes who are nursed and then weaned stupidly early, yes I feel sad. 1 year is the norm here, and I think OMG are people freaking sheeple that they just wean at a year becoz that is what you do? Yes it seems they are. Which is ridiculous given the fact that if you open your eyes and look at the baby in front of you, s/he probably very OBVIOUSLY still wants and needs to nurse. Like, HELLO.

Okay, I'm a bit triggered by this. Yes I feel sad. And judgmental.
ElliesMomma's Avatar ElliesMomma 09:59 PM 05-13-2007
i agree with the above post, in that it seems a lot harder on the baby emotionally to wean at a year vs., say 4 months, when breast could be replaced with a bottle and the baby would hardly notice the difference. by one year, they know what mom's got, and they're used to getting it. to cut them off at a year seems pretty cruel. yes, lots of people do it. we just passed a year and nursing as strong as ever. i have no intention to cut her off. i'm sure the naysayer people will start to comment soon, oh well.
frontierpsych's Avatar frontierpsych 10:18 PM 05-13-2007
To me, it really depends on whether the weaning was gentle. I definitely agree it is more than optimal to CLW, but cutting a kid off cold Turkey because the earth made one rotation around the sun makes no sense to me.
mommy2zander's Avatar mommy2zander 03:40 AM 05-15-2007
Babies/children not getting to bf for months or years does make me sad... but not in a judgemental way... more of a morning sadness...

Zander & I have always enjoyed nursing so much... he's a wild kid & can be a huge handful, & when I see how overstimulated he sometimes gets just playing with toys or another child, it's just so nice that he can come back & relax & nurse...

So yes, it makes ME sad that other babies/moms might miss out on this.. but I do understand that breastfeeding is not the same experience for everyone & that some mamas have other ways of connecting with their kiddos & that not everyone has had the same experience of relaxing breastfeeding...

I agree with the op that it's sad when a mom/baby have an easy relaxing bf relationship & are pressured to wean by our western society... if the situation is different, mom & baby aren't mutually happy with bf relationship, it's still sad, but it's a different kind of sad...

I think between being pregnant & tired, I just really need to go to bed!! : But I can say from the bottom of my heart that I'm not judging anyone (I believe most people do the best they can do & I shouldn't judge anyone who's story I haven't lived), but I'd be happy to see 90% of children be bf longer then they are... & for more kiddos/mamas to be able to experience the joy/love/peace that Zander/I have experienced with breast feeding...
Ruthla's Avatar Ruthla 03:55 AM 05-15-2007
Yeah, I'm always a little sad whenever I hear of a mama-led weaning, esp if the baby is under 2. I usually try to hide my reaction from the mama in question, so as to spare her feelings and not make it seem like I'm being judgemental, but that initial reaction still happens.

Yes, I understand that there are various things going on in every family and there are plenty of valid reasons for mother led weaning at any age, and plenty of valid reasons for a baby to stop nursing before the age of two (mama's subsequent pg, for example.) Nonetheless, I still feel a little bit sad for the babies who aren't able to nurse as long as they could.
1  2

Up