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My oldest son is 2.5. I have assumed that when he is ready to wean, he will do so, and never gave it much more thought than that. Our nursing relationship has been so precious and beneficial to both of us. But since my second son was born 3 months ago, DS1 has increased his nursing to the point that he often nurses more than the baby. I am exhausted, irritable, and just plain spent. On top of that, DS1 has started having EXTREME reactions to being asked to wait to nurse (I never outright refuse, but I often ask him to wait a few minutes while I finish xyz, and I always follow through.) He will scream, cry, throw himself on the floor, and hit me. I know much of this is due to his age and to having a new sibling. At night, he would nurse all night long if I didn't unlatch him so I can roll over to feed the baby. I don't want to wean--I just don't know WHAT to do. I want him to wean in his own time, whenever that may be. But to be honest, our nursing relationship no longer feels very precious. I feel like a bad mom when I'm sitting there feeling resentful. I want a healthy nursing relationship with both of my kids. What can I do to improve this situation?
 

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I understand how exhausting and overwhelming an older nursling can be.
DD1 will be 5 in Aug. She also nursed/nurses more than my LO, especially the 1st few months after the LO was born. Depending on her need for milkies, she would get mad, pull her sister off the milk, try to grab it and nurse, throw a toy, hit, mope, even cry. She was older than your DS1 but I hope these ideas might help.

Those times you feel really nursed out, see if he will except a substitute for nursing, like cuddling or playing, going for a walk. Something that gives him physical closeness but without the milk.

Sometimes I feel like i want to run for the hills. If your DH or SO can watch DS1 or both boys, get some fresh air, sun, cup of coffee or tea, even just for a few minutes.

I know some moms don't like to set limits on nursing times but with DD1 her need to nurse was even a few times an hour, so I started limiting how long she could be at the breast. 1 minute, 10 seconds, whatever you can bare and he will except.

Give yourself and him extra love and understanding, you are not a "bad" mother for feeling this way and he is not a "bad" boy for needing to nurse.

Be loving but firm about what is acceptable behavior towards you or DS2 like, I know you are upset but you can not hit mama or DS2.

At night Mary could stay latched ALL NIGHT too. I have not weaned completely at night but DH has helped alot. If your hubby or SO is there at night, they can help. DH would cuddle with her, give her a massage, and help me get her resettled while I nursed DD2 or when I couldn't handle nursing right then. If she is in great need of Milkies, I still let her nurse, even if just for a few seconds.

Remember that this is a stage and with time he will grow older and be better able to understand your needs as well as DS2's.

It's been a year now since Layla was born and Mary is growing more and more understanding and they have bonded well at the breast. Also, in time and with the above things, I don't feel resentful about her needs. It does get better.

I hope this helps, even just for the fact that you know someone else has been there and made it thru. Hugs to you and your 2 LO's.

Dana
 
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