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so, my dear four year old dd is nursing at night and once or twice in the morning and has been nothing but kind and understanding about sharing the "nursin's" with her new 10 week old brother. I couldn't have asked for a smoother or sweeter transition - she's incredible.<br>
but.<br>
after she patiently waits for me to finish nursing him, or get him positioned, or whatever, she won't stop. like, no milk and i'm starting to hurt and i have to distract myself and for-crying-out-loud-it's-been 25 minutes! won't stop. luckily ds (that's the first time i ever wrote ds!) is a great little sleeper, so far.<br>
we've talked about it (she and I) and we think maybe she forgot how to end a nursing session when my milk dried up, and i've been trying super hard to let her just nurse as long as she wants, but i seem to reach an "ok, enough, love" point before she does. every time. and then she gets so sad. so sad. tonight she said maybe she was just not going to nurse anymore. she thinks she might be forgetting how. and she never falls asleep anymore - not that she ever did all that easily - only during pregnancy when there was little or no milk. nursing has always sort of amped her up instead of wind her down.<br>
i'm so heartbroken. i didn't put in four years of night nursing and nursing through a miscarriage and a pregnancy and nursing in labor to have it end like that. you know? I tell her she can nurse as long as she wants (age-wise) but then i don't let her nurse for as long as she wants (time-wise).<br>
i guess i should just keep trying to give her as much time as she needs.<br>
but sometimes i need a piece of toast. after 25 minutes and all night with a newborn i feel like a really need a piece of toast.<br><br>
any other long session older nurslings out there?<br>
is this just a normal transition from many shorter sessions a day?<br>
help!<br>
aileen
 

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First, wow! You are an amazing and patient mama! I don't really have any specific advice, I am only nursing one almost 2 year old. Not to be too abstract or weird but, sometimes, in a tough spot, I like to think of nursing habits as a metaphor for what my dd is going through in her life at that time. I wonder if your dd's current nursing pattern is her way of expressing her feelings about having to share you. Like, she is willing to wait for you, but then she wants you forever. I wonder if it would help to discuss it with her by asking questions like, "what would it be like if you could nurse forever?" or something like this, you know her best and what she might be feeling and what might help.
 

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My four year old is doing the same thing but it's a little different for us. While pregnant she was mostly dry nursing except for a short time after my miscarriage when the milk did come in for a few weeks. My baby is twelve days old today and in the NICU, he is full term but has some health issues. I am pumping every two hours trying to get my supply up to his needs, he is a nine pounder and needs a lot of bm.<br>
So at the same time I am nursing dd and because of the stress and now her having a cold she is nursing really long too and during the night where before she was sleeping through. I am mostly happy to nurse her during the day but ask her to wait until after I pump but the whole routine of pump, nurse, use the potty, eat, drink and then it is time to pump again. While we are at the NICU it is even harder because I never get to see the baby. I am swapping off with dh to watch dd since she can't go in.<br><br>
Dd is loving the mama milk but I get sore just from the pumping, her latch is good and she gets another letdown that I have not been able to stimulate with the pump. I don't think she is taking his milk but all this nursing does not seem to be increasing my supply either. You would think I would be drowning in milk by now.<br><br>
Sorry to be a bit off topic but I think the renewed interest in nursing is par for the course because a four year old is still really dependant on mama while still able to accept some limits like waiting turns. My dd is also showing nursing behavior I haven't seen in a long time like wanting to do the dental exams, play with my nose and twirl my hair. It used to really annoy her if my hair fell on her during nursing and now she wants to be covered with a curtain of hair. Because of being at the NICU we have had to kind of NIP too because there is often a parade of people coming through the waiting area.
 

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I'm also only nursing an almost 3yo... so, you mamas nursing more than one... PROPS to you!<br><br>
Questions:
<ol style="list-style-type:decimal;"><li>Are you (either/any of you) doing anything to increase supply? Extra water, mother's milk teas, oatmeal, self-massage...?</li>
<li>Dd is almost 3 and understands a lot of things better and will cooperate more when things are explained to her... Could you set up some kind of standard of operation and explain? Ex: "Dd, when you nurse long like that, my nipples get really sore. Can we set a timer for you? You can pick the minutes... 5, 10, 15 (or whatever mom can live with), ok? Then when the timer goes off, maybe you can help me take care of them so they don't hurt as much... " This could be your older dc getting you a wash cloth with cold water on it, or some salve or something, and 'applying' it, or helping.</li>
<li>The milk at the 'end of the let-down' is supposed to have the most fat and calories... it's thicker and richer... What if you let the older dc <i>start</i> a session, like, before baby's ready to nurse? Again, setting a timer, maybe, (5-10) with the explaination that enough needs to be left for baby... and then baby gets the longer session, and the richer content, either nursed or pumped, for the mom that's pumping for NICU baby.</li>
</ol><br>
Just some questions/ideas... hth! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1">
 
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