Is nursing this much at this age normal? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 03-09-2005, 11:10 AM - Thread Starter
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DD is 17 mos. I figured it up yesterday, and even on days when she's in daycare for 8 hours, she nurses at least six times. And these aren't quick nips, but LONG sessions. Some nights she hardly lets go all night, she nurses for up to an hour on the way home unless she falls asleep, even our on-the-way to daycare session is usually 15-20 min.

On days she's w/ me, she will go some long daytime stretches and mostly nurses before naps, plus a few short sessions and her usual nighttime sessions.

The past couple of weeks it's been a bit more than that because she's been sick. But even when not sick, she nurses almost as much now as she did a year ago. She eats solids, though not quite as much as other toddlers I've seen, even BF'ed ones.

She's also quite petite, only 18 1/2 lbs. The ped has no concerns about her growth as she's on a consistent curve, etc. I don't worry about her weight, either.

But when is she going to let up? At a LLL meeting the other day the leader (a friend of mine) told me to quit mentioning how much she nurses in front of the pg/new moms for fear of scaring them off extended BF'ing! (She was kidding, sort of, but none of her three nursed this much at this age, either.)

breastfeeding, babywearing, homeschooling Heathen parent to my little Wanderer, 7 1/2 , and baby Elf-stone, 3/11!

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#2 of 7 Old 03-09-2005, 02:20 PM
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Is nursing this much at this age normal?

Without reading your post, my first response to your question was, "Yes." I'm sticking with that answer . Our kids know a lot more about how much they need to nurse and what is normal *for them* than we do. We sometimes forget this!

To give you some perspective: I have a 2.5 year old nursling who nurses 12 or more times a day. That's normal for her (she also eats TONS of solids...she's just an avid nurser!). One of her brothers nursed up to 12 times a day at 2.5 and the other nursed maybe 6 times a day at 2.5. The one who nursed maybe 6 times a day at 2.5 nurses 1-2 times a day at 4.5! (The other one self-weaned on his fifth birthday.)

When will she nurse less? When she's ready. It sounds like she knows what she's doing...mamamilk is providing her with what she needs, not just for physical nourishment, but for emotional nourishment as well. It seems to me that she loves to nurse and she loves to be with you - she loves to prepare for her day at daycare with a nice long session (stocking up on mamamilk and a big dose of special one-on-one time with mama!) and loves to reconnect with you after daycare with a nice long session, too.

Many nurslings who are in day care...or nurslings who are "too busy" during the day to nurse much .... nurse a lot at night.

Whenever I get discouraged about how often/long I'm sitting down to nurse, I think of what one of my nurslings told me, and it puts it in perspective, "I love to nurse because it's good for my belly and good for my heart."

Mama to A (12), Z (11), H (9), C (5), A (3) and 4 angels. 

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#3 of 7 Old 03-09-2005, 02:57 PM
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I'm glad you asked this. My 19 month old DS still nurses a ton. He had started nursing around 4 or 5 times/day last month, but he's back up to at least 8 or 9 times/day.
One thing I did notice was that he can sleep longer at night if I give him a snack about 30 minutes before he goes to bed. He still nurses a bunch in the monring, but it lets us both get more sleep. Of course, he's had the flu the past few days, so he's pretty much been nursing all night.
I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one with a toddler who nurses this much. Hang in there, mama!
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#4 of 7 Old 03-09-2005, 03:07 PM
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Absolutely it's normal!!! Some children just need to nurse more or less than others. I think that our perception of what's "normal" can be skewed when many women who nurse toddlers set limits on the nursing.

Ruth, single mommy to 3 quasi-adults
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#5 of 7 Old 03-09-2005, 10:15 PM
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For both my kids that would *not* be normal---- I'd be wondering why they had dropped off so much.

If you are concerned it is "too much", I would try not to be. The majority of children I have known to still be nursing at that age were nursing *at least* that much (and often a lot more).



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#6 of 7 Old 03-09-2005, 10:28 PM
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That sounds very familiar My dd is now 3.5 and she still nurses quite frequently some days but nowhere near what she did between 15-22 months. And she too was a long nurser. I always wondered how other babes could nurse and go so quickly -- my dd wanted to be snuggled up in my arms, sometimes for 30+ minutes! From speaking with other moms, between 15-19 months is a very common time for a child to increase nursing. She could be "stocking up" when you are home to tide her over when you are apart or she could simply be becoming more independent and you are a reassurance and a comfort to her. And that said, when my dd was sick a few weeks ago she nursed a LOT and it took us almost 2 weeks to get back to our regular schedule. There are so many "normals" -- as long as you are both comfortable with the new "schedule" than go with what works. It will change again before you know it!
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#7 of 7 Old 03-09-2005, 10:34 PM
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I mostly lurk (sorry), but had to agree with everyone else! My DD is almost 17 months and nurses at least that much (I've never actually counted until now - funny!). I figure she nurses when she needs to.

Take care,


Me treehugger.gif+ Him eat.gif + DD flower.gif + DSS1 guitar.gif + DSS2 REPlaySkateboard04HL.gif

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