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Discussion Starter #1
DS is 15 months old. I'd say he gets about 80% of his nutrition through BF. He likes solids but just doesn't have all that much interest in eating after the first few bites, except at dinner time when he'll usually eat more substantial amounts. He will ask for a sip or two of water if we're drinking it but not a whole lot.<br><br>
He recently has been BF less often... but he used to BF several times an hour so "less often" means once every hour or two. He'll often go 3, maybe even 4 hours if we're out & about (he might latch on for a minute or two but too distracted to truly nurse) and has high-frequency (several times an hour) periods still if he's bored/tired/stressed/missed dinner/etc.<br><br>
I *usually* feed him on demand but because he is such a frequent nurser I have been asking him to wait a little if we're in the middle of something or I need a break or we're about to get in the car or whatever.<br><br>
Soooo I will use last night as an example, he was cranky all day because he woke too early. By 7pm or so (after he'd just taken a long nap mostly attached to the breast and woken up to nurse minutes before) I told DH to give him dinner as I didn't want to BF him again when he asked. So he had some food and wanted water and he was CHUGGING the water, he couldn't get enough. Then I felt bad because he was obviously very thirsty & I had said no to BF him at that moment. It was hot out all day so I don't blame him for being thirsty!<br><br>
I think I still have it in my head that if he drinks too much water it's dangerous, upsets the electrolyte balance, etc. but he is 15MOS not 3mos!! I want him to get used to drinking water in addition to BF'ing and I'd also like DH to be able to offer him water & a snack when I just need a break from the constant BF'ing. But in a situation like last night I kind of panic & figure he really needs to BF so I take away the water & nurse him. I think I'm just really confused. I'm all for following his lead and I do, for the most part, but I guess the point I'm confused on is if 'his lead' is telling me to BF him and I say no & then 'his lead' changes to drinking massive amounts of water (OK only a couple ounces probably but way more than he usually drinks) then which 'lead' do I follow and is it OK to want a break occasionally? And will his electrolytes get imbalanced and am I encouraging early weaning? At this point I want to CLW but I feel like I'm sabotaging it...<br><br>
Sorry if this makes no sense, I guess I need someone to talk this through with me...
 

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I think you are over thinking! It is okay for him to have water, even lots of water on a hot day. I can't remember when I started but by 12 months I would always have a cup of water out for my kids so they can drink as they please. I weaned my ds at 3.5 and dd is still nursing at 2 years. They like water but they would never accept it as a breast milk replacement.<br><br>
Having him wait for nursing isn't a horrible thing to do. It isn't encouraging weaning. CLW is about a natural process and that process starts with tastes of food and goes on to consuming more food/drink that is not breast milk. One day of more consumption doesn't change the process.
 

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I think your 15 month old is not going to mess up his electrolytes by drinking to his own thirst. Teaching him to respond to his bodies cues, like drinking water when thirsty, is totally positive and healthy.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Phew OK. You're right I probably am overthinking this!! (I overthink EVERYTHING <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">) I get confused when I mess with his natural signals and ask him to wait & so then I don't trust his signals or my own judgment! I guess I just need to let it go and trust that he's not going to overdo it & drink too much water or not enough milk or something. I'm sure he will make it LOUDLY clear if he really *needs* milk instead of food/water!!
 

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I would give him access to a sippy with water and let him drink to thirst. Very doubtful he is going to overdo it on his own. My 17mo loves to drink water but usually most of it ends up down her shirt or on the floor.
 
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