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I posted something in the Breastfeeding Beyond Infancy, but figured maybe there were some other mamas here who may help me. My intention has always been CLW. Granted, I work 5 hours a day, but I leave my dd and dh w/ breastmilk in the fridge for whenever she wants it. While home, I nurse whenever she asks, as well as ask/remind my busy 21 month dd throughout the day. She is also a heavy night nurser, usually nursing 4 times+.<br><br>
Mama milk has always been her milk. I haven't given her any other milk or alternative milk products. I know that my milk is what is right for her body. However, recently she has shown interst in other milk. Dh drinks cow's milk and she asks for papa's milk from the fridge. On occassion, I drink soymilk. She also asks to drink milk like mama.<br><br>
I am just curious what you CLW mamas do or have done w/ your dcs. Did you give milk/alternative milk when your dc seemed interested? Did you tell them it was just for mama or papa and they had their own special mama milk? If you do or did give other milk products what did you choose?<br><br>
I know that I don't need to give her any milk besides my own, but she is showing this interest and I don't know what to do w/ it.
 

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With my now 4 year old, we began to give her milk (cows and/or soy) around 18 months. My 21 month old has never had any other milk but mine, but has had milk products.<br><br>
I don't see any harm in it if you're comfortable with it. If you don't want her to have cows milk, try soy, rice or almond milks.<br><br>
If she's interested, then it's really your call. Personally, I'm not thrilled about giving my 21 month old cows milk at all, even though the others in the house drink it (except me, hate milk, bleh). Trying to wean them all on to soy milk, or at the VERY least organic cows milk.
 

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My kids all enjoy milk from cows. Particularly chocolate cows. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> I don't have a problem with it at all. At some point they aren't nursing for the milk so much, IMO, as it is for the cuddling. It's a whole different thing sitting at the table with a cup than sitting on a lap with the breast, right? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br><br><br>
I honestly don't see how introducing other milk products (whether cow, goat or soy or anything else) should effect nursing. Even elimination of milk, as in late-stage pregnancy (mine usually tapers off by the 6th or 7th month) doesn't mean the children stop nursing ... it just means they're not necessarily drinking anything while nursing. Ya' know?
 

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I have tried cow's milk with ds, but he hates it. The only other beverage he has is water. I say can't hurt if you don't have a problem with her having it.
 

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Ds drinks cow milk, and has since he was a bit over a year. (Back then it was mostly just a little over cereal now and then. Now he drinks it as a beverage once or twice a day.) But I don't think he views it as being in the same category as "side," because I don't think he really views my milk as a beverage anymore. Nursing is more comfort, connection, and ritual to him now.
 

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I think it's a family lifestyle choice. We use cow's milk here for cereal and cooking, but not much else. It's not for drinking. Occasionally, DD has asked for some to drink, but I explain my beliefs about cow's milk and she's satisfied with that. She does drink the milk out of the bottom of her cereal bowl, though!<br><br>
My own personal opinion is that children should drink water for thirst. Nothing else. Anything else, IMHO, gets in the way of the nutrition they should be consuming. Water quenches thirst, but milk simulates that feeling while adding calories and fat. If a child is still breastfeeding, that's completely different as breastmilk does so much more than adding calories and fat.<br><br>
What is your family's view on cow's milk? I have a hard time discouraging anything I do myself. So, if you drink cow's milk, your DD will probably want to drink cow's milk, and it's hard to explain why it's okay for you, but not for her.<br><br>
I don't believe it will lead to weaning. But, it might lead to less eating of solids.
 

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I never gave ds1 anything besides mama milk until he was 3 years old. And even now it is only on cereal for breakfast. He has never had a glass of milk. I use organic cows milk for their cereal in the morning. Ds2 likes milk on his cereal since his older brother is getting it, too. So he has gotten it much sooner than ds1. I will also use the cows milk for cooking. They only get cups of water to drink at meals and in between. Ds1 nurses 2x a day now, ds2 nurses 6-8x a day on average.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>CelticMomma</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">What is your family's view on cow's milk? I have a hard time discouraging anything I do myself. So, if you drink cow's milk, your DD will probably want to drink cow's milk, and it's hard to explain why it's okay for you, but not for her.<br><br>
I don't believe it will lead to weaning. But, it might lead to less eating of solids.</div>
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I'm a vegetarian, so cow's milk is out of my diet. Dh however drinks cow's milk. I'm pretty sure that dd is interested b/c she sees him.<br><br>
Thanks for all the advice. I think I'll just continue on our path w/ mama milk and water. Maybe if she still expresses an interest I can give her the occasional soy or almond milk.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>CelticMama</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">... My own personal opinion is that children should drink water for thirst. Nothing else. Anything else, IMHO, gets in the way of the nutrition they should be consuming. Water quenches thirst, but milk simulates that feeling while adding calories and fat. If a child is still breastfeeding, that's completely different as breastmilk does so much more than adding calories ...</div>
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Huh. Am interested in that. Very. Thanks for the thought.
 

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Fern was never interested in cow's milk (she would ask to try it when I drank it, then make a face and spit it out). Then she heard that breast milk was milk (from a toddler friend who asked his mother for milk) we had always just said nursing so she didn't have word for it. After that she was uddenly interested in milk when I drank it, and said it was yummy, I asked her if she knew where it came from and she pointed to my breast <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> (I think she liked the idea of cold milk) so I explained it to her and now she will occasionally say "Fern want cow breast" and run to the fridge <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">: I give her an inch or so, in an open cup if she asks, which is once every few days at most. I have no intention of pushing it, but I wouldn't refuse her either.<br>
OTOH she loves yougurt and ice cream.
 

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Oh and btw, it just dawned on me that I posted on a CLW thread....<br>
and that I am really starting to see myself as a real child led weaner. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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My dd doesn't like cows milk much and rarely drinks it. I tried introducing soy milk to her awhile back, but every attempt made her sicker than a dog. I'm guessing she has a sensitivity to soy. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug">
 

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We start rice milk in a sippy cup between 6-9 months. My 3 year old asks for a cup each day, while my 2 year old will drink either a few sips or maybe half a cup on a big day. Sometimes they'll have a little soy milk mixed with it if we happen to have any. And sometimes almond milk. But that's about it.<br><br>
- Krista
 

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I don't have a problem with dd drinking organic cow's milk. She loves it, however she's also allergic to it (terrible, painful diaper rash EVERY time). She doesn't like rice milk, I'm not sure about soymilk, because I'm not really convinced that it's healthy (still researching). My next try will be goats milk if dd doesn't take well to the non-homogenized oraganic stuff, which she did well with before we noticed the allergy so I'm tempted to try it again.<br><br>
Although I didn't notice how old your dc is. We try not to give dairy before a year , but it really depends on the little one.
 

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Thought I'd add my two cents. Ds is 2 1/4. Still nurses like a champ. I think, some days, that he'll still be nursing in college... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> So I'm relishing every day we still nurse, b/c he'll be old one day, and not ask for it anymore...<br><br>
Anyway, back from my tangent. My DD is four, and is weaned. She drinks rice milk by the gallon, if left unmonitored. Has since she weaned. Typically, I let her have three sippy cups a day of rice milk, and the rest herbal or decaf. tea or ice water. She drinks tons of fluids all day, and has since she was born (I drank two gallons of water daily while preggo...I think she was even thirsty then!). Eats like a champ, too, so no worries about it interfering with caloric intake.<br><br>
Ds, on the other hand, as I said, nurses a LOT during the day, and still nurses a few times at night. He has started asking for a cup of rice milk now and then...maybe a cup every other day. And usually we give him two or three ounces, and he is good with that. Otherwise, he's a water or nursies man. Really, just nursies, if he has his way. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> I'm fine with it. Child led weaning means following the child's needs, right? So, in my mind, if he'd rather have rice milk than mama's milk, isn't that a step toward weaning on his part? Not a huge one, but a step, nonetheless. And who am I to tell him that (practicing CLW, afterall)he can't tell me he's ready for a different form of wetting his whistle!? Wouldn't be "child led" if I did...
 

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We rarely drink milk here as a beverage. However from time to time dd asks for it and so we give it to her. Tonight she drank about 8oz of soy milk. That is the most she has ever drunk at once. She still nurses 12-15x a day so I doubt that will lead to weaning (although sleeping through the night would be welcome). We switch it up. We usually have soy milk, almond milk, hazelnut milk, goat milk and/or raw cows milk (sometimes organic pasturized but I usually don't offer her that). I offer her whatever I feel like at the time although I tend to do the animal milks cause I think she needs the fat in them.<br><br>
Anyhow, clw imo is letting your child slowly replace nursing with other things both for food and comfort, at their own pace.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>courtenay_e</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Child led weaning means following the child's needs, right? So, in my mind, if he'd rather have rice milk than mama's milk, isn't that a step toward weaning on his part? Not a huge one, but a step, nonetheless. And who am I to tell him that (practicing CLW, afterall)he can't tell me he's ready for a different form of wetting his whistle!? Wouldn't be "child led" if I did...</div>
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Thank you for this mama. I really and truly appreciate this. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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Personally I introduced Almond milk at about a year. I wanted DS to have at least one alternative to water and mama milk. He is now 2y4mo and has recently cut back on his nursing and night weaned. A month ago he was nursing pretty frequently. I haven't really changed my behavior, and believe that this was done at his pace when he was ready. I am very happy at the moment to have a little more of a break - with a new baby coming in July it will be a short repreive. I am nowhere ready to wean DS, but the reduction in nursing right now is welcome.<br><br>
I do try to offer water, moo milk (organic) or almond milk sometimes if he's been asking to nurse quite a bit (like yesterday). I rarely offer to nurse any more unless it's nap or bedtime. Nursing seems to rarely be for thirst or hunger any more on DS part (although I'm sure it's a component when waking).<br><br>
I have not pumped for DS when I'm away for a few hours in a very long time. Actually just after his 2nd birthday I spent my first night away from him for a total time of about 48 hours and I left no expressed milk - I tried, but just couldn't pump any. At this point I really think that DS nursing is all about getting it 'from the tap' and not getting it from a bottle or cup. I am personally very satisfied with this arrangement.<br><br>
Whatever you're comfortable with, Mamas!
 

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I thought of other milks as a new food to introduce, not a substitute for breastmilk. I think DS had his first taste of whole cow's milk at about 9 or 10mo- he was on Daddy's lap sharing a cookie and then he had a sip or two from his glass. It certainly didn't affect how much he nursed that day! I probably wouldn't have let him drink milk from MY glass at that young age, but after the fact I didn't really see a reason to be upset about it.<br><br>
The bottom line is that allowing him to have some milk in a cup is unlikely to affect the nursing relationship in any way. You need to do whatever you're comfortable with. If letting him have non-mama milk "feels wrong" to you right now, then say "no."
 

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My 3 yr. old drinks soymilk, and has since about a year. He's nursing on my lap as I type, so obviously it hasn't caused him to wean. I limit it to 2 cups a day, he usually only has none or 1/2 a cup (and we're talking 6 oz. kid sized cups) a day, but while pregnant I wasn't producing any milk from about 2-4 mos. and I encouraged him to drink more.<br>
Breastmilk is still my son's main fluid, followed by water, with vegetable juice 3-4x week (8 oz. at a time), soymilk (4 oz. at a time) 3-4x a week and fruit juices on occasion.
 
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