Cutting back but NOT weaning - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 2 Old 07-21-2010, 09:27 AM - Thread Starter
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DD is 1.5 years old. I've returned to work in the last few weeks so she's in daycare for a little less than 8 hours M-F. Anyways, so far she goes those 8 hours with just food and water and comes home and nurses like mad. Then she'll nurse again before bed (maybe once in between too) and she's still not nightweaned so she nurses occasionally during the night too. Also, normally twice in the morning before she goes to daycare. On the weekends it's like she wants to make up for the time and and is attached to me 24-7! That means come monday morning I'm ridiculously full and in pain for at least monday and tuesday.

Ideally, I'd like for her to cut down to nursing about 3 times per day (first thing in the morning, before nap/when I come home from work, nighttime to go to sleep). I can deal with the occasional night feedings but it's really during the day that is my concern since it's so painful at the beginning of the week!

So we've started to give her cow's milk more (we pretty much never gave it to her before...) and she really, really likes it (we call it Daddy's milk and that seems to make her pretty happy). That's helped some but I know that when I'm around she still wants to nurse a lot. Distractions does not work with this kid either! She's really, really determined when she wants something... Did anybody else deal with this?
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#2 of 2 Old 07-21-2010, 09:40 AM
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It's great that you're aware she's trying to make up for lost time, that sounds exactly like what your daughter is doing. If you're finding that you're full, is it possible for you to pump at work and then have her drink the milk while you're gone? I know that won't make up for the bonding, but it may help.
I've been reading about weaning lately too, because I have a 2 yr old ds who nurses frequently, and I don't want to wean, but I do want to cut down. I have read that when your child wants to nurse, and distraction isn't working, that is a sign that they truly need it. Sometimes older children ask to nurse so they can connect with you, other times, though, they really, truly need to nurse. Maybe you can start with small steps. When she comes to you to nurse, suggest that first you want to read her a favourite story (or do a short play like row your boat or the itsy bitsy spider). Then, when the story is done, she may still want to nurse, and that's fine, but she may learn that she can put it off for a few minutes, and over time, those minutes will grow. If she freaks out at the suggestion of a book first, I'd lay off, but if she's receptive to it, it will help her learn that there can be more to her relationship with you than just nursing. Also, since you've *just* returned to work, it's very likely that she is still adjusting to that major change, and after a few months, the new routine should settle.
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