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For those that didn't CLW: when and why did you wean?

470 Views 5 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  moondiapers
I'm a bit confused over nursing my toddler. DD's 15 mos and only nurses twice a day. Even then, it's only for a few minutes. She much prefers sippy cups and solid food. She's never been a comfort nurser, either.

Anyway, at this point I'm feeling sort of ambivalent about nursing. It doesn't bother me, yet at the same time I don't get much satisfaction out of it. I used to love nursing but now, not so much. I'm not sure what or why things have changed.

Part of it is that my family thinks I'm a bit nuts to still be nursing her. That's fine, I can deal with that. Another part of me, due to the fact that I'm a WOHM, feels a little "tied down". . that it's yet another chore I need to accomplish during the day. I wouldn't say that nursing has become a burden quite yet, but I can see it getting that way in the future. I like my job but I'm incredibly busy when I get home and when I take time out ot nurse, DD just isn't that interested. Makes me wonder why I'm still doing this, ya know?

I think things were easier when she was younger because I knew I had to nurse her. I was her sole nutrition and comfort. But now she's so busy and active and hardly takes time out for us, I know that she'd probably be just fine if we weaned (very slowly and gently, of course). But I'm having trouble figuring out if this is a temporary hump or if it's an indication that it's time to wean.
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You might be surprised what you find. At this age, they are very curious and easily distracted, and this is when they get into the funny positions (almost comical), running around, doing quick nips, "seeming" disinterested (b/c you've done such a great job w/bonding and nursing), and basically this is termed often as a nursing strike. It might well be followed up by a period of OVER nursing, totally clinging, resetting boundaries, NEEDING to know that mama and her comforting and nourishing bb's are there, and periods of you wondering how you ever were here at this time. I'd say sit back, relax and enjoy the ride. It might just get bumpy again soon. Then again, if you so desire to see if you can do less and less, now would be a good time ONLY for the reason that she's soooo easily distracted right now. Just don't be surprised if she decides she wants those nursies again (and again and again, ohhh myyy) in the very near future.
I haven't weaned yet, but I'll chime in.

Hm. My dd never went through a phase where she only nursed twice a day. I WANTED her too, but she didn't. She always LOVED nursing. Only now, at 27 mos, does she only nurse for nap and bedtime.. and that's my doing, not hers.

But I went through that feeling around 15 mos. We'd made it through the AAP recommendations, many of her peers were weaned and she and I were getting better at separating. So I started hoping she'd just give it up soon. But she wasn't like your daughter and I knew she was in for the long haul if I left it up to her. Really my biggest desires to wean have always come from outside dd and myself. Its been about dh and my wish that she was more affectionate with him, the feeling that I need to defend the fact that she's "still nursing," the fear that she's not independent enough for the society I've brought her into, wondering if she'll remember and mention it in kindergarten, Etc, Etc. And when I say these things out loud, or even type them here, they suddenly become much smaller. But they are real concerns (OK, I'm not too concerned about kindergarten really) and should be acknowledged. There have been better solutions to all of the above other than weaning anyway.

But again, she always seemed to need to nurse... until now. Now its seeming less and less like a NEED. So I am gently encouraging her to slow down. I must say, I am glad that I waited until she was verbal before pushing any kind of "independence" on her, like falling asleep by herself. Its so nice to be able to talk to her about it and hear her feedback and know she understands what's happening.

I guess my take on your situation is, if you really don't want to nurse, and she doesn't seem to need to nurse, than go ahead and try a little weaning. Just don't announce it or set a date or anything. Like you said, its gradual, so you can turn back or take it as slowly as you'd like. This gives you time to feel things out. She'll let you know if its not working for her. Or maybe you'll miss that time to just sit for a minute. If not, well, 15 months of breastfeeding is pretty darn good and your child will benifit from it for the rest of her life.
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Well, we haven't fully weaned yet, either, but I can also agree that there seems to be a lessening of interest around 15 mos (at least with my DS and at least one other kid we know-- I know, it's a pretty small sample size
). DS cut out two nursing sessions at 15 mos because I found I was continuously asking him if he wanted to nurse at his previously usual time, and he would rather reluctantly stop what he was doing, nurse halfheartedly for about 30 sec, then go back to playing. I finally stopped asking him, and he didn't seem to miss it. Once or twice since then (over the past 2 months) he's asked to nurse in the middle of the morning or afternoon (the two sessions we dropped), but I haven't wanted to go back to that, so I offer food or cow's milk (
: yes, we introduced cow's milk, and DS really likes it!) and he's always happy with that instead. He still nurses at naptime, bedtime, in the night on demand, and first thing in the morning. I found just dropping those two nursing sessions really changed my outlook on nursing and I was able to feel much more positive about our relationship, and DS seems unaffected by it. It seems like your DD nurses much less than DS did at that age, but I don't think the lack of interest is unusual. I think they are so busy learning at that age that any interruption is unwelcome; OTOH, I suspect your DD probably really needs those few remaining nursing sessions to take a break and reconnect with you after all her busy learning!
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I don't know, I sorta did and sorta didn't CLW.

I was pregnant and it was pretty painful for me. At that point dd was only nursing twice a day. So when she asked I would ask her if she would like a cup of water or a graham cracker, she almost always said 'yes'. And she weaned really quickly that way. I think she only nursed once or twice in the first week and then only once the second week and that was it.

Of course whenever she's asked since then I've let her try. She was just over 2.5 yrs old originally. She's nursed a few times since then till she was about 3.5 yrs. Now she says that she's too big and doesn't know how if you ask her.
I weaned my son at 3 1/2. It was starting to make my skin crawl when he was 3. I took 6 months and did it VERY slowly and gently.
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