Thursday, February 12, 2015

Are we ready to wean?

Short answer: no

Long answer: no way

Every parent does things differently and makes choices based on what works for their family.  This includes the choice to bottle feed vs. breast feed.  That's fine and I'm not intending to start any sort of debate on what is better (just feed your baby please) .  The one debatable exception would be car seat safety issues since those are proven statistics.  But anyway...

The subject of weaning....

I know this is a highly personal choice and I have major conflicting feelings about it.   Some days I can't imagine it ever ending and some days I think I feel like I have to do it because she's 16 months and our society doesn't like nursing past one (and honestly I'm sure that's pushing it for some).

A sweet shot from last week.  

Actually this (pressure from others) is a real reason.  I know that children around the world nurse for much longer than in the United States.  I know the benefits of it for Eleanor (in 16 months only a few cases of sniffles and mild colds, but that it's and breastfeeding is a big reason), as well as for myself (lower risks of certain cancers for example).  Knowing all these things (scientifically proven things) it's confusing why there is not more acceptance.

Confused Lion King

Also there is that whole bonding thing and that's real.  If you follow my instagram account  you will see me post pictures of me holding a sleeping Eleanor post bedtime nursing session.  There is something so perfect about a sweet innocent toddler falling asleep nursing.   It's the calm after a busy day.

Currently I've been working on dropping the afternoon nursing session leaving us with 3 most days - morning, before nap and before bedtime as well.  Occasionally there is a middle of the night session and some days there might be an extra session if she is a totally wreck and that's the only thing that will calm her down.

She will often come up to me during the day and sign milk or try to pull down my shirt.  I try to redirect her with a book or a snack or something, but doing so results in guilt usually (on my part).  Why am I depriving her of something she wants?  I do say no when she wants to stick a lotion bottle in her mouth or have a sip of my soda, but why am I saying no to this?   This is good for her. Again, it all comes down to society here and me feeling like it's 'wrong' to do this- this being nursing past one.

But it's stupid because I'm extremely proud of the fact that I have nursed her for 16 months.  It's a huge commitment.

Click to Close

Pumping isn't easy for me (and even if it was she won't take pumped milk) so I can't be away from Eleanor for too long.  I've never had a night away, and I don't think I've ever been apart from her for more than 10 or so hours.

Then there is the fact that I really want to have another baby at some point but I still haven't had a postpartum period.  I know that you can get pregnant while nursing and before getting a period but I think that beginning the weaning process could kick start that and help with getting pregnant again.

The thought of it makes me really anxious though so  for now I'll continue on the path we are on and re-evaluate in a few months.

At what point did you wean?  Was it initiated by you or the child?

1 comment:

  1. Weaned at 3 years, 3 months. Totally his idea. I honestly didn't even see myself nursing to a year. Don't let outside pressure change what you want to do. My mom was sooooooooo against it but I didn't really care!