Mothering Forum banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
257 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I have interupted my daughters nursing pattern, and I need to vent. I wanted to let my daugher wean when she is ready. She is now 3 years old, and she has nursed on cue day and night for her entire life, I have never been away for a night. She has nursed a lot, which I have been fine with as I know how many benefits there are to CLW.

But then I became pregnant. I am now in week 15, and the last months have been a bigger challenge than I could handle, unfortunately. It has been painful physically to nurse, but the worst has been nursing aversions which have been harder to handle than the physical pain. I also found it hard to go back to sleep again when she nursed in the night.

I felt that I needed more rest, so for the last week, I have weaned her from night nursing. She still nurses in the morning, whenever she wants to during the day and to go to sleep in the evening. But during the night we cuddle instead. The transition has been very smooth, she has only woken up once or twice a night, she doesn't cry, she lies very close to me and cuddles until she falls asleep again.

Our days have become much better, I am able to nurse her with joy during the day, and I have more energy and am less nausceaus.

But, by restricting her nursing during the night, I have sacrificed her child led weaning... I have interupted the natural pattern. I am so sorry that I wasn't able to give her that gift. I guess I am grieving being able to say that she really got to nurse to meet all her needs as long as she wanted to, because I now that if it was her choice alone, I know that she would have preferred to nurse at night too.

Thanks for listening!

I really want to thank you all, I have learned so much from the posts here. I needed you so much, because I am the only long term nurser in my family.

I do admire what you are all doing by sticking to child led weaning, it makes me happy to think of all those lucky children getting the very best. So thanks again! And good bye - I guess I belong with the Breastfeeding Beyond Infancy tribe now.

All the best!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,424 Posts
As far as interrupting the natural pattern -- did you know that most mamas in primitive cultures wean their toddlers when they get pregnant with a new baby? So weaning during pregnancy may actually be part of the natural evolutionary pattern, for all we know.

Your daughter is still nursing -- just not in the middle of the night.

Personally, I think you're still doing CLW, because your daughter still gets to have the nursing relationship, and still nurses on cue most of the time. And, since she's doing fine with just cuddling at night, she was clearly ready for the change.

From my understanding, CLW is inclusive of a give-and-take relationship, where both mother's and child's needs are met. You still belong here, IMO
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,686 Posts
havsulen,
It sounds to me like the two of you have had a good run. And while you might feel that you don't "belong" here right now there is a chance you will be back.

If you wind up tandem nursing and you don't have nursing aversion with DC1 then you may very well pick up CLW again.

Whatever happens she's a lucky kid that you were able to nurse her this long.

Take care,
~Cath
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
19,789 Posts


I also partially night weaned my DD when I was pg with DS and so didn't consider her to *actually* CLW.
I still found this place the closest to what I was doing.

You are TOTALLY welcome here, I promise
Good luck w/the rest of your pg and enjoy those few months of sleep!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,223 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by havsulen View Post
But, by restricting her nursing during the night, I have sacrificed her child led weaning... I have interupted the natural pattern.
I have a hard time accepting this statement because that definition of clw (no parental interference=clw, parental interference=not clw) assumes that a mother putting limits on her child's nursing is not natural and disrupts the child's natural nursing path. If a limit such as not nursing during the night, due to pain and sleep-deprivation (assuming the child is beyond the infant stage), allows the mother and child to continue nursing until the child is ready to wean then I can't see how that is not part of the natural path. Breastfeeding, including child-led weaning (imho), is naturally a 2-way relationship in which both mother and child should be respected and honored.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,070 Posts
I can be pretty hard core with child-led weaning meaning only following the child's lead. But, as I nurse a 4.5 year old I recognize that with older children we play a much more active role in the relationship as mothers.

I think when someone stops nursing for certain times of day (at night, typically) but the child is FINE with it, that's different than if the night nursing is discontinued and it's a difficult struggle with the child.

For me, the absence of struggle is the real indication of how "child-led" our nursing relationship is.

All this means that while I sometimes cringe at how many CLW mothers have made their kids stop nursing at night (with tears and struggle), it sounds to me like you are following what I consider to be the biggest and most important rule of parenting: never do anything that makes you not like your kids.

I don't think you need to leave this forum, unless you want to, if it feels wrong to "be here." No one has to leave this forum, really, kwim?

Okie doke, I'm writing in circles and must now go put a puzzle together with my nursling. :)

--Heather
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,424 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by SereneBabe View Post
All this means that while I sometimes cringe at how many CLW mothers have made their kids stop nursing at night (with tears and struggle), it sounds to me like you are following what I consider to be the biggest and most important rule of parenting: never do anything that makes you not like your kids.
For me, my daughter's reduced need to nurse seemed to be what communicated to my body that it was "okay" to make a new baby. It all felt very child-led. When my sore pregnant nipples sometimes needed a break, my 4yo seemed to easily shift to receiving a backrub, snuggle, or story-time instead.

When the colostrum came in, and she thought it was "Yuck!" -- there were no tears; we just lovingly moved into a new phase of life.

I don't know how I'd cope if my body was the sort that made new babies while I had a little one still needing intensive nursing. But it sounds like the OP's 3yo is also ready for a new baby.

I agree that even modified CLW is still closer to CLW than it is to any other approach I've heard of.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
766 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by havsulen View Post
I am able to nurse her with joy during the day
this is what it is all about, mama!
and it made me cry.
i agree with heather that the further along this road i get the more i realize that it is really is a dance of two partners (or three as the case may be...) the "rules" really do shift and adjust as your nursling crosses that 3 year threshold. it sounds to me like you are doing a beautiful waltz. everybody needs to stop for a second sometimes and start again on the upbeat.

and one, two, three and two, two, three.
you dance right on, mama.
right here.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,424 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by aileen View Post
i agree with heather that the further along this road i get the more i realize that it is really is a dance of two partners (or three as the case may be...) the "rules" really do shift and adjust as your nursling crosses that 3 year threshold. it sounds to me like you are doing a beautiful waltz. everybody needs to stop for a second sometimes and start again on the upbeat.

and one, two, three and two, two, three.
you dance right on, mama.
right here.
What a lovely picture!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
58 Posts
sounds like you are being gental with her and that is what counts
it hurt me very much when my 2 1/2 year old was nursing and i was pregnant. I just kept telling myseft that if i hang in there it wont hurt after the baby was born. I was wrong. it hurt for a couple more weeks and finally the pain was gone(hormonal i quess). and he took himself down to 1 or 2 times a day.
maybe try letting her nurse when she wants but put more of a time limit to the nursing.
i personlly feel that you can do it
and you will be glad you did.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,142 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by havsulen View Post

Our days have become much better, I am able to nurse her with joy during the day, and I have more energy and am less nausceaus.

But, by restricting her nursing during the night, I have sacrificed her child led weaning... I have interupted the natural pattern. !

1. I don't think you'd be nursing her with joy if she wasn't really ready for this change...I think having the joy means it's all ok.

2. as for natural, I've seen animals walk away from suckling offspring, so it's "natural" for those who are nursing to get tired or frustrated or say no for various reasons.

3. I say all this in the context of being a CLW mom who nursed for years.
It is DEFINITELY a give and take relationship as the child grows into the ability to have this kind of relationship.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
257 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by aileen View Post
and one, two, three and two, two, three.
you dance right on, mama.
right here.
Oh, Aileen - now that made me cry!
A lot...

Thank you so much for your touching words, they now hang on my fridge, giving me new energy every time I see them.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post
Your daughter is still nursing -- just not in the middle of the night.
True! I guess that after all the fact that she is still nursing, is more important than this change.
Thanks a lot everyone for your caring words! All the posts have made me think. I see more clearly now that making adjustments doesn't mean that I am destroying our CLW relationship, as long as both of us are fine with the process.

I definately am, and luckily she is too. For the last 3 nights she has even slept right through the night and woken up exclaiming loudly: "It is morning" in a happy tone of voice - since that means that we'll nurse.


So yes, we nurse - and with smiles and cuddles to. So we'll continue dancing!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,142 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by havsulen View Post
All the posts have made me think. I see more clearly now that making adjustments doesn't mean that I am destroying our CLW relationship, as long as both of us are fine with the process.
We all need nursing mentors so we can learn what is normal, healthy, loving....if you're the only CLW mom you know it can be so frustrating, thinking "am I doing this right? If I set limits am I hurting him/her? What are my rights, if any? How do we transition from the newborn period, where we do whatever the child wants when they peep, to nursing an older child who may have the ability to tolerate a no sometimes and a yes other times, while following our heart and listening to our child?"

On line, in real life, at La Leche League....wherever you find them, mentors who have "been there done that" are so important. Anyone who responded to this post has been in your position in the past, wondering how it's all supposed to go.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,372 Posts
Quote:

Originally Posted by mother_sunshine View Post
I have a hard time accepting this statement because that definition of clw (no parental interference=clw, parental interference=not clw) assumes that a mother putting limits on her child's nursing is not natural and disrupts the child's natural nursing path. If a limit such as not nursing during the night, due to pain and sleep-deprivation (assuming the child is beyond the infant stage), allows the mother and child to continue nursing until the child is ready to wean then I can't see how that is not part of the natural path. Breastfeeding, including child-led weaning (imho), is naturally a 2-way relationship in which both mother and child should be respected and honored
Thank you. ITA.

It is "child-led weaning" not "child led decisions about when and where every nursing session begins and ends all the time" An older nursling can often smoothly handle delayed nursing or changes in nursing patterns without totally stopping the nursing relationship (i.e., weaning).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,223 Posts
I agree. We live in an emotionally disconnected society where selfishness, competition, and greed dominate and are deeply taught since infancy. Breastfeeding our children is one tiny but very important way to help change things about society.....one nurtured child at a time. But, imho, we need not miss the point. Breastfeeding beyond the infant years is a wonderfully natural way for us to teach our children how to respect and care for one another's feelings and needs, not just their own. What better way than to learn that from your own unconditionally-loving and nurturing mother.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top