Thursday, August 12, 2010

Breast feeding beyond 12 months- why I do it

When I was pregnant with my first child I knew I wanted to breast feed but I had no idea how long I planned on doing it for. My goal was until he was 12 months, I figured when he was old enough for cows milk that he was old enough to be weaned.

Time went on and when he was six months old I got pregnant with our second child, I had a lot of people telling me I should wean him but I kept nursing him. My plan was still to wean him at 12 months, that way he was weaned before his sister was born. Before I knew it his first birthday was here, I had been doing a lot of reading on breast feeding beyond a year but I was just not sure what I wanted to do. I loved breastfeeding him, I knew it was the best thing for him but I really was not wanted to nurse a toddler and a newborn, so I started to wean him. I started with night weaning, Chris would get him to sleep each night with a sippy cup. It was going well until a couple weeks later he walked right off the end of my moms bed and broke his leg. He wanted the comfort of nursing and there was no way I was going to deny it to him. At that point in time I just decided it was not time to wean and if he was not weaned before his sister was born so be it.

Our second child was born when he was fifteen months old and he was still nursing. I really thought nursing a toddler and a newborn was going to be a major pain but it really was not. Alexzander kept nursing till he was 18 months old and he self weaned.
Since I nursed Alexzander for 18 months I decided that was how long I was going to nurse Destiny. Destiny was a very difficult baby, she did not sleep through the night until well after a year old, did nothing but nurse for about the first six months of her life and I am pretty sure if I would have weaned her at a year it would have been very difficult, she really did not like milk at all. I got pregnant with our third child when Destiny was about fourteen months old, she continued to nurse until she was 18 months old and again she self weaned.

My youngest is now thirteen months old and still nursing. There are times that I really want to wean her. She bites a lot and as any mom that has been bit by a nursing baby knows it hurts a lot! For a couple months now she has been waking up more then an average newborn and unless my husband goes into the other room with her she will not go back to sleep without nursing but I just can not bring myself to do it yet. Yes she is over a year so she can have a cup of milk but to me she is still a baby and I love the connection we have. As of now the plan is to nurse her for eighteen months also.

If you are a nursing mom and you are not sure how long you plan to nurse I highly recommend these sites to you. There is a lot of very good information. What ever you decide to do, best of luck on your breast feeding journey.

http://www.llli.org/NB/NBextended.html

http://www.kellymom.com/bf/bfextended/ebf-benefits.html

2 comments:

  1. I really appreciate this post! My daughter is 17 mos and is still nursing. There are times I really want to stop, but maybe I'm lazy and don't want that one extra thing to take care of tonight, or maybe I just secretly still enjoy holding her close and nursing to sleep :) We only nurse at night, and she takes a cup during the day. I am hoping she will self wean so I don't have to feel guilty about it! How did your children self wean? I have never done the self weaning thing before.

    I am a new follower to your blog and really enjoy it! I hope you will stop by and follow me too!

    http://questfortheperfectclothdiaper.blogspot.com/

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  2. My son weaned because he decided it was for babies and my daughter did not like it after I got pregnant.

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