If you BF past a year... — The Bump
Toddlers: 12 - 24 Months

If you BF past a year...

I always planned on BFing until she self-weans or 2 years, whichever came first.  But now that she's a year, I'm starting to get almost antsy and sort of wanting to quit, although I am really conflicted and I know it would not be easy on my daughter.

My question is, did you have this feeling and move past it?  I was curious if it's normal to feel this, but get over it and keep nursing.

I've started introducing milk to her, thinking that maybe she will eventIually prefer that and drop feedings on her own.  I'd love weaning to be her choice, but I am not sure how long I'll really want to continue.

Thanks!!

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Re: If you BF past a year...

  • DS is 14 months and I am still BF. He had gotten down, all on his own, to BF at naptime and bedtime only, but since teething started (and also a couple of illnesses his brother brought home from preschool) he is wanting to nurse more frequently. He likes milk, but he prefers to BF.

    I thought for sure I'd quit by 1 year, but he is obviously not ready, and I am not going to push him at this point. Most of the time I don't mind and I enjoy the snuggling, but sometimes I'm just like, 'Dude. Seriously.' especially after he's just eaten a meal. It also makes it difficult to give my oldest the individual attention he needs (he is 3.5). I just don't know how to quit without upsetting him. I don't offer it to him, but how do I deny him when he wants it?

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  • I knew I wanted to go at least a year and figured I would see how it was going at that point.  Personally, I was back and forth, part of me was not emotionally ready and part of me was frustrated with it at times.  When we started whole milk I replaced one of his nursing sessions with a sippy of milk, and I slowly dropped feedings (every month or so I would drop one).  I actually ended up going to just over 16 months.
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  • that actually sounds ideal, to slowly drop a feeding every month or so.  I dont know if I'm ready to stop a feeding yet, but maybe next month.  Then I can sort of feel like we're working towards a goal :)  ahhh, we'll see!  I'm sure I'll change my mind a thousand times!

     

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  • After reading the other response you got, it reminded me that ds never really "asked" to nurse.  At least I don't think he did so maybe dropping feedings was easier for us.  Some of the feedings he seemed to drop on his own, sometimes wouldn't sit still more than 30 seconds to nurse, so we eventually just stopped trying.  And others I dropped and gave him cow's milk instead.
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  • I'm about on the same plan...I don't want to go past 2 years, but I was hoping for "self-weaning" prior to that.  I've really enjoyed it, but I, too, am starting to feel a *little* antsy about dropping more nursing sessions.  I think if you drop a session here & there, it will help with that antsy feeling because they'll be some progress towards weaning.  We've dropped any sessions between 9am and 4pm, when she'd be at daycare and has whole milk in a sippy.  So that kind of helped.  I'm now hoping to drop our late afternoon session (breasts allowing) so we'll just nurse in the evenings, a billion times at night, and the mornings.

    Come to think of it, I think I'd be fine nursing for much longer if I could just stop having to nurse her twice during the middle of the night.Sleep
     

  • This was my plan too, and nearly every week, I think that is it, no more boob. But them something happens, another new tooth, a cold, a trip and we continue. I am really hoping that now that he is getting more interested in food, it will mean less nursing. Also I have started getting DH to put DS to bed, I nurse DS for abit, usually 15 minutes and then DH puts him to bed. That seemed the easiest way to start to cut back, because if DS knows I am around he wants to nurse.

     

  • I have my days when I want to quit.  I don't mind the BFing, but the pumping is a PITA.  I could probably go to 1 pump/day at work, but haven't yet.  He drinks cow's milk from a sippy pretty well.  Once your DD is doing that, you could probably wean pretty easily, but I'd follow her lead and your instinct. 
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  • imagefood_chick:
    After reading the other response you got, it reminded me that ds never really "asked" to nurse.  At least I don't think he did so maybe dropping feedings was easier for us.  Some of the feedings he seemed to drop on his own, sometimes wouldn't sit still more than 30 seconds to nurse, so we eventually just stopped trying.  And others I dropped and gave him cow's milk instead.

    my daughter never asks to nurse either.  she's pretty much on a schedule, nursing 4 times a day and once at night.  so it may be easier to wean because of this, even though i know how much she loves it.

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  • I always just wanted to wait and see what happened. DS is iffy about milk in a sippy, but recently I was able to cut out any feedings at nap time at least. Now we just BF when he wakes up, once in the early afternoon and at bedtime and I give him a sippy of milk with lunch and dinner.

    But as soon as I thought this was working out he has fallen right into a huge wave of separation anxiety for about 10 days now. This includes wanting to BF all the time so it has been hard to keep those other feedings out.

    So even though selfishly I would kind of like to be done, knowing how much he enjoys it keeps me going. I WAH too so it is hard for me to say no when there is no concrete reason I need to quit. I think I will just keep cutting out one here and there until we are done or one of us is really done.

     

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  • I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who is conflicted!  It really makes me feel a lot better :)
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  • Oh and I want to add that my DS does not use a pacifier/suck his thumb, and has never taken to a "lovie" or blankie, so I am both of those things for him, too. If it weren't for that, I think we would be well on the road to weaning by now. =/
  • I'd like to have DD weaned by 18-20 months.  Ideally I'd like it if she self-weaned because then I wouldn't feel like I was forcing the issue.  DD only nurses twice a day now (first thing in the morning, right before her nap), so it's really not a big time commitment for me.  Plus, once she started drinking cow's milk, I stopped pumping and that made it so much easier for me. 

    There are days when I want to stop (like yesterday when I had bad allergies and couldn't take anything for them), and days where I don't mind continuing.

  • imagephilosoraptor:
    Oh and I want to add that my DS does not use a pacifier/suck his thumb, and has never taken to a "lovie" or blankie, so I am both of those things for him, too. If it weren't for that, I think we would be well on the road to weaning by now. =/

    Ugh.  Being a human pacifier is tough.  I'm glad that at least my DD takes a pacifier, and it's the closest thing she'll accept as a lovey.  However, in the middle of the night or if she's sick or doing her perpetual teething (she has no teeth, but is always teething, I swear) it's nurse nurse nurse nurse.  I don't see how we'll ever wean at this rate.

  • yes, i know the night time nursing has really colored my feelings.  i keep thinking if we wean she'll sleep better, but that's probably not the case!

    luckily she does take a paci, but when she wakes at night, nothing but nursing will do.

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  • It does feel better to know that others are in the same boat you are. :)

    I always thought that magically we would just be done nursing at a year. That didn't happen. :o) At this point I think that two nursings a day would be heavenly. Right now she is nursing about 4 times a day and twice at night. I try to do the "don't offer don't refuse" technique but she always wants to nurse. She will go through phases where she drops a feeding or two and then the next week it is back up again.

    I talked to the pedi about it this week and she said that it's very difficult to wean between 12-14 months but between 15-18 months it gets a lot easier to wean if you want to. So - i'm hoping she's right about that. I am a SAHM so I also feel like there is no good reason to stop nursing except my own selfishness - so - we continue and I am still hoping for that magical day when she weans herself. :)

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  • I'm so glad you asked this, cause I've definitely been feeling this way too. A year was my initial goal, and Lyla will turn 1 in October, but I've been getting kinda antsy lately. Mostly because we've still got crazy all-night nursing issues going on... I think it'd be a lot better if those were resolved.

    The one thing keeping me going is that I REALLY want her to keep getting all the breastmilk antibodies through the upcoming cold and flu season. Even if all the swine flu hysteria doesn't amount to anything, I'd just feel better knowing she was getting that extra layer of protection. And the protective immune factors in breastmilk actually increase during the second year of nursing, so that's definitely an incentive for us.

    So I'm with you... hoping she'll self-wean before she's 2, or at least cut out the night-time nursing!! But for now, the revised plan is 18 months minimum.

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