Those still BF'ing their 12-24 month old, please come in — The Bump
Breastfeeding

Those still BF'ing their 12-24 month old, please come in

I am just curious what BF'ing looks like for those who are doing this with their 12-24 month old.  My long term BF'ing goal was a year, but after doing some research, I am thinking about aiming for 2 years as a stretch goal.

I am 8 months out, and have been able to keep up my supply since going back to work full-time, three months ago.  I've barely made a dent in my freezer stash, (but I've been rotating the stock, and its at about 700 oz.) and am wondering if there is anything I can or should be doing now to enable me to continue to BF past a year.

I am specifically curious to know how often you nurse a 12 month old, and an 18 month old.  When do they drop nursing sessions?  If you work full time, when do you drop pumping sessions?

Right now, I pump three times while at work, but occasionally I can only do it two times on a given day. My son eats (meaning nurses or bottle feeds EBM) between 6-7 times a day, and he takes 3, 5oz bottles while I work.  I am sorta hoping he won't be eating as much at 12 months, and that I would be able to go down to 1-2 pumping sessions in a workday.  I also pump one side (LO nurses from the other) every morning, which helps make up for the occasional missed session.

 Any thoughts or advice would be appreciated.  Thanks! 

TTC Child #1 Sept '08, Dx: Unexplained, DOR 2 IUI's = BFN, m/c, IVF 1 = 0 embies to put back, IVF 2 = BFN, IVF 3 = cancelled, IVF 4 = BFP with 1 embie. Our son came into our life on 9/28/11. We are in love! Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker

Re: Those still BF'ing their 12-24 month old, please come in

  • I just dropped to 2x per day at work, and it's glorious!  :-)  My LO still takes the same three 4oz bottles at daycare (she's there 7 hours, so this is a lot) at 10.5mo.  I expect her to continue that until she's at least 1.  I just rearranged and labeled my stash and I have enough to cover all her daycare bottles until she's 1, so from here on out, anything I pump is "extra".  I dont mind giving her WCM at daycare but I do want to continue to nurse her when we are together.

    I will say.....it took me WEEKS to get up the courage to drop to 2x.  I started at 5x per day (but I returned to work a lot sooner than you did, so I still had to work to maintain that supply).  My LO recently started sleeping more at night too, which helped.

    On weekends, my LO nurses 6x per day.  During the week, it's those 3 bottles plus 2 nursing sessions.  

    I am not sure if any of this info helps, I feel like I just spewed a bunch of info at you. 

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  • image jlsimon56:

    I just dropped to 2x per day at work, and it's glorious!  :-)  My LO still takes the same three 4oz bottles at daycare (she's there 7 hours, so this is a lot) at 10.5mo.  I expect her to continue that until she's at least 1.  I just rearranged and labeled my stash and I have enough to cover all her daycare bottles until she's 1, so from here on out, anything I pump is "extra".  I dont mind giving her WCM at daycare but I do want to continue to nurse her when we are together.

    I will say.....it took me WEEKS to get up the courage to drop to 2x.  I started at 5x per day (but I returned to work a lot sooner than you did, so I still had to work to maintain that supply).  My LO recently started sleeping more at night too, which helped.

    On weekends, my LO nurses 6x per day.  During the week, it's those 3 bottles plus 2 nursing sessions.  

    I am not sure if any of this info helps, I feel like I just spewed a bunch of info at you. 

     I haven't pumped in about a week and it's AMAZING the freedom you have. ( I don't work, but still had to pump) But it took FOREVER to get there.

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  • I appreciate the response!  Thanks for the advice, I hope to be in that good of shape at 11 months out like you are.  I don't see myself dropping sessions before July - I have a three day business trip I have to take then, and I don't want to mess a good thing up unless I get through that unscathed.  

    I'm curious to see what others will say.  Thanks again! 

    TTC Child #1 Sept '08, Dx: Unexplained, DOR 2 IUI's = BFN, m/c, IVF 1 = 0 embies to put back, IVF 2 = BFN, IVF 3 = cancelled, IVF 4 = BFP with 1 embie. Our son came into our life on 9/28/11. We are in love! Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • I pumped at work 3 times a day until DD was 12 months old and then I dropped to 2 times a day.  I did that for about 2 months and then pumped once a day for one month. By the time she was 15 months old, she was moving up to a different room at daycare and had been refusing the milk I sent for her. I stopped pumping then (15 months) and have been nursing morning and night (twice per day) since then. DD is now 22 months old.

     

  • That's a great freezer stash!

    I am BFing my DS who will be 17 months tomorrow.  On the three days that I work, he nurses twice (morning and night), and on the other four days he nurses 4 times (morning, night, and before each of his two naps). 

    At 12 months old it was the same, except I still had freezer stash at that point, so he would get BM in a sippy on the days I worked. I ran out of freezer stash at 14 months because my pumping output dwindled to nothing (even though he still got plenty while BFing) so 14 months is also when I stopped pumping. I wanted to pump for as long as he BFed, but that part was beyond my control.

    Starting at 14 months, I would give a sippy of cow's milk on the days I worked, but he still doesn't drink much of that and gets most of his milk intake from our nursing sessions. I am pregnant with LO #2 and hoping it doesn't affect my supply, so far so good!

    Congrats on making it this far and continuing to your new goal!

    DS (7 years old) from FET in 2010
    DD (5 years old) from IUI in 2012
    TTC 3rd and final!: IUI #1 in progress!
  • DD still nurses very frequently-up to 8 times a day sometimes. That said, she really only takes a lot of milk first thing in the morning and after her nap. The other sessions are more for comfort/something to do. I am working on cutting those down a bit, though I'm not really in a hurry.

    I think most women-especially those who work full time- stop pumping around a year and just nurse morning/evening. I don't pump at all and haven't since DD was ten months. If I am not around she really doesn't miss nursing at all and will just eat/drink something else. It's a lot more flexible now! 

    ETA: She started dropping sessions around 11 months.  

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  • NhevNhev member

    At 12 months, Amelia was still nursing 3-5 times per day on average and sometimes more. Although I don't work, I was occasionally pumping for times when we were apart and I quit as soon as she turned one, aside from one weekend when we were apart for two nights. 

    Now, at 18 months, she nurses 3 times on most days (first thing in the morning, before nap, and after nap). Sometimes, especially if we're busy, she'll only nurse once or twice, but sometimes she wants to nurse all day! We dropped the nighttime session about 3-4 weeks ago. It wasn't really planned; she just went to sleep a few times without asking for milk, so I decided to stop and offer hugs and a sippy instead.

     Like pepomntpat said, Amelia can also go without when we're apart, no problem.

     Good luck! 

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  • My son is almost 28 months old and is still nursing at least once each day. I'm also pregnant with our second child.

    When my son was a year old, I retired the pump. I was not a fan of pumping at work, but I did it and it went ok. He drank wcm at day care and would nurse before and after day care as  well as on demand throughout the rest of the day. As he has gotten older, he has gotten busy and interested in different things. He dropped feedings in his own for the most part. At 28 months, he asks for "mi mis" and sometimes makes a grab at them (we are working in this), but seems relatively content at one feeding per day. If you had told me at the beginning that I would be nursing this long, I don't know if I would have believed you, but it has worked well for us and I am considering tandem nursing when baby #2 comes.

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  • Thanks so much for the responses ladies!  I really appreciate all of the insight!  Your responses were exactly what I was looking for.

    It seems as if things will get easier after 12 months or so, and that BF'ing doesn't require the same kind of effort that it does now.  I guess we will just keep plugging away as long as we can, and when LO decides to drop a session, I will take it as a gift!  

    Take Care! 

    TTC Child #1 Sept '08, Dx: Unexplained, DOR 2 IUI's = BFN, m/c, IVF 1 = 0 embies to put back, IVF 2 = BFN, IVF 3 = cancelled, IVF 4 = BFP with 1 embie. Our son came into our life on 9/28/11. We are in love! Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • DS still nurses at 5:30PM when I get home from work, around 8PM right before he goes to bed, once during the night (3AMish), and once in the morning when he wakes up (6 AMish).  On weekends I might nurse him during the day once or twice as well, but usually he just gets water or WCM.

    I stopped pumping at one year while at work.  DH and I have also gone away overnight and I didn't pump while we were away (although I probably would have been more comfortable if I had).  When I went on a business trip for 5 days, I pumped 2X's per day to maintain my supply.  Everything's gone swimmingly.  If you can make it to 1 year, making it to 2 should be no issue.  It's just gotten easier :-)


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    BFP#2:  EDD 2/11/14, MMC confirmed 7/15/13 (growth stopped at 6 weeks), D&C @ 12 weeks 7/25/13

  • kofmkgkofmkg
    Long-Lasting Membership 10000 Comments 250 Answers 500 Love Its
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    I work full time and stopped pumping at 1 year- mainly b/c I hated it.  We continued to nurse 4-5x a day and sometimes at night. 

    At some point before 18 months, we night weaned b/c he was waking out of habit to nurse (not from need) and out of habit, I was complying. By 18 months, we were down to 3x daily.  For personal reasons, I stopped nursing him after we got home from school/work in the evenings.  That was a slightly difficult routine to break-- also born of habit rather than need.

    At 22 months, we are nursing first thing in the morning and the last thing at night.  I am ready to end it-- b/c we are TTC and we are encountering issues that may or may not be affected by my BFing hormones.  I never set out on this BFIng journey to nurse this long-- I never thought I would be the mom who nursed into toddlerhood.  As ready as I am though to wean completely, LO is adamant about keeping these nursing sessions.  So we are sort of stuck right now and I don't know what to do.  I am thrilled we ahve made it this far-- the benefits have been phenomenal, but I am ready to stop and hope LO decides to wean sooner than later.

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  • I'm still breastfeeding my 28 month old, does that count?

    I was working when he was 12 months and I produced so well for the pump that I was only pumping once/workday anyway, so it was easy to drop that session when he turned 1 and then he used my stash until about 14 months. After that he nursed morning, after work, bedtime on weekdays and two additional times on weekends. When he was 13 months I got pregnant but that didn't seem to effect much. When I was home over the summer (teacher) he nursed morning, nap, after nap and bedtime (and if he got hurt or upset). When I went back to work at 19 months he was down to once/day (either morning or bedtime) for a while. Little sister was born when he was 23 months and everything changed from there, but that's a whole different story.

    Overall I find nursing a toddler to be a wonderful, easy and fulfilling experience. Also, check out this youtube video for a funny take on the experience: 

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  • I don't pump. LO gets cow milk or water at daycare.

    We nurse when together. That's about it. It's going well, I still enjoy nursing and he's still very much enjoying it, so we'll keep doing it. I can't imagine quitting at this point as it would be so hard on both of us. He generally nurses before I go to work around 6:30 am, then when I get home around 4 pm and off and on until bedtime at 8. He does wake overnight and I nurse him once or twice, but he's always been a rotten sleeper.

  • kcl22kcl22
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    I nursed until LO self weaned at 16 months.  We dropped to just am and bedtime feedings I believe around 13 months.  It was so easy at that point (and although he nursed mostly out of habit/for comfort I know I still had a decent supply) I would've continued as long as he wanted.  I stopped pumping at around 9 months due to a job change; I worked part time in a setting that didn't allow me to pump without being really inconvenienced.  So I nursed on demand the days I was home, nursed in the morning, when I got home and at bedtime on the days I worked.  My body adjusted fine.  The last few months of just nursing twice a day were really nice.

    One of my goals was to nurse until he had all of his teeth because it was the only thing that would calm him when he was actively teething and having trouble sleeping; and we achieved that!

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