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Discussion Starter #1
I have told my husband from the get go that I would allow our daughter to self ween. He seemed fine with it. She is now two and a half and so he asked me when she would be stopping breastfeeding, and I reminded him whenever she wants to stop. We had a very happy and wonderful breastfeeding relationship that we both enjoyed. So he freaked out screaming that he didn't want a five, six, or seven year old breastfeeding. I said that it was up to her, and asked him to not discuss this with me right in front of our daughter like she wasn't there. He lost it, said I was a crazy person weirdo, said he should have a say (after I told him he doesn't have a say), and wouldn't stop even after I kept begging him to not do this in front of our daughter.

Well, now she is refusing my breast. Just stopped. I am shattered. The anger I have for my husband is indescribable, I have never felt so betrayed. I can't see myself forgiving him for this. I am not sure if she will ever breastfeed again. Is there anything I can do to reestablish our breastfeeding relationship? Has this happened to any of you? I am at a loss.
 

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:angry His outburst in front of your daughter was totally inappropriate. Especially, it was very wrong for him to continue after you pointed out that she could hear him and asked him to stop.

He knew from the beginning that you would let her nurse until she decided she was done. Now that he feels eager for her to stop, he should have discussed this with you privately, and/or he might have talked GENTLY with her about the other things she could do for comfort as she gets older and eventually stops nursing. I don't think it's wrong for him to bring up the idea at all or even to encourage her to start thinking about tapering off, but the way he did it was horrifying.

Most likely, your daughter feels ashamed of nursing and/or feels that Daddy will be mean to Mama if she keeps nursing. I think your focus needs to be on her feelings and helping her to have what she needs now. That may or may not be more breastfeeding. If she wants to stop now and find her comfort in other ways--but she IS finding comfort, not seeming sad or fearful--then you need to accept her decision. Make sure you offer lots of cuddles! There's a wide range of verbal ability at that age, so I don't know if you can really talk with her about what Daddy said and how she feels, but if you can, listen to her feelings and assure her that the choice is really hers.

Eventually you'll be able to talk with your husband about this, but for now I would hold off unless he brings it up, and focus on your daughter instead. When you know more about how it's going to work out with her, and your feelings have cooled a bit, then talk with your husband. Although this issue with this child will never come up again (if she is weaned now), his behavior shows staggering disrespect for you. It is never okay to call you a crazy person weirdo in front of your child. When his opinion differs from yours, he needs to express it respectfully, and if he feels really angry about the issue he should save the discussion for a time when you are alone.

:Hug It's hard to stop breastfeeding! It is a major transition in your relationship with your child, even when it happens gradually like it did with my son. Whatever happens now, I hope you will find peace and comfort.
 

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Wow that's a harsh way to end nursing, I'm so sorry you both went through that. It's pretty normal for 2-3 year olds to finish up, often with a little nudge that way by putting them off while busy or offering other food and drink instead. He should know very very few kids go beyond 4 even if it's totally up to them. You only wanted it to end gradually and peacefully and on her schedule. Yelling in front of her was a really unfortunate communication breakdown, sounds to me like there's more to resolve than the weaning timeframe. See what you can do on your side to make him feel heard and address his concerns (such as mentioning how most choose to stop before age 4, it gets rarer by then anyway, and if it gets to be a long time you may re-evaluate weaning), and let him know what you need from him as far as calm and logical communication or at least waiting for the right time to have it out.

My hubby had concerns beyond 2 also, mostly with our first maybe a little with our second, we'll see with the third if he even lifts an eyebrow. He made me feel like doing the right thing was doing the wrong thing at times, blamed night waking on it, sort of claimed ownership of the breasts, considered it odd to nurse anymore. Thank God he never got frantic and deliberately combative about it, but it is common for them to withdraw support around then. You have to be strong and firm in your choices and in the logical support for it, but let them know they are heard and it won't last forever.

To re-establish bf I'd say treat it like a nursing strike. Be alone with her, offer while sleepy, keep things loving and peaceful as possible between everybody. If you need to address it any more with DH just let him know you need to make the end gradual. You can mention health risks of sudden weaning like engorgement, clogged ducts, mastitis, he has to agree it's gotta be slower on those counts if nothing else. I don't know if that's valid in your case, how much milk you were actually producing currently, but it's a good excuse at least.
 

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@Ema629: I hear your frustration on so many levels and I am sorry this has been such a difficult issue for you and your husband. Perhaps you might consider talking with your doctor about it to answer some of the questions you and your husband are wrestling with? It seems every parent deals with this at some point or another. I’ve found this article that might be helpful to you: http://bit.ly/1sj1Uer. I’ll be praying for you.
-Pugsmum
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you all for your support! I really appreciated it! My hubby felt horrible and was shocked that our daughter stopped nursing like that. It wasn't his intent for that to happen. When he asked her why she stopped and she said, "Cause it make Daddy sad", he was crushed. He had no idea honestly that he had such a powerful effect on her. He told her that he noticed she was sad and cranky (because she had become unrecognizable, super cranky kid insead of her normal happy easy going ways) and asked if she missed nursing. When she said yes he told her that if she wanted to nurse again that he would be just fine with that and he was very very sorry that he yelled at Mama and made her feel bad. Really truly. Well, she pulled up my shirt and giggled and started nursing right after their little talk. She was sighing and humming contently while nursing and her personality returned to normal.

My hubby learned some really valuable things. First, that our daughter listens to everything and really understands what is being said. Second, that she really values his thoughts and opinions. He had actually felt marginilized by the super close relationship I have with our daughter and somehow got it in his head that if the nursing stopped, he could get in on the good stuff. What he didn't know was that he was " in there" all along and that he had to foster his own relationship with her on his terms. It was his bitterness and doubt holding him back, not our nursing relationship.

It has been incredible watching him turn off the laptop and really spend time with her the way I had always encouraging him to do since the beginning. He now plays with her and does the little chores like brush her teeth. He has gone from self-imposed side-lined dad to super engaged and involved dad. I love watching their relationship flourish and our daughter become more and more a daddy's girl! All is well and I couldn't be happier!
 

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I read this a few days ago but didn't have anything to add that hadn't been said. I am pretty pregnant right now and very hormonal but your update literally brought tears to my eyes. It is so great to hear about an ugly situation turning into something positive for everyone.
 

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Oh, and he apologized to me too and we sorted things out between us. He agrees we will never discuss things about our daughter in front of her and we will work on more positive ways to discuss issues between us. I feel like this whole thing strengthened our relationship...would have preferred to not have the emotional toll and a two and a half day painful engorgement...but we are in a much better place in our marriage. Thanks again to all of you!
 

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Wow! I'm so glad this was resolved happily before the milk was gone! Your husband has learned a valuable lesson.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
alk209, that is soooo sweet! Wishing you the best of everything with the arrival of your baby.
 
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