October 19, 2008,
C.G. asks from Minneapolis, MN on October 14, 2008
Almost One Year Old Suddenly Really into Breastfeeding
A few months ago I posted a request about my 7 month old and how it seemed she was almost weaning herself from breastfeeding. I got great responses and I stuck with it and she has continued to breastfeed. In fact she is really into it now. So much I thought we might be ending things soon. However that does not seem to be the case.
She is 11 and a half months old now and she has stopped taking a bottle from me and will only breastfeed. I am totally confused. I thought by now things would be almost ending instead it seems to be way more. I have noticed that she is probably going through a growth sprut, she also has been quite attached to me lately, and she has been teething. She turns one on Nov. 1st. I am wondering IS THIS NORMAL? Have any of you out there dealt with this too? If so what worked for you?
Thanks for the input.
V.K. answers from Minneapolis on October 19, 2008
Totally normal! And good for you for continuing to nurture that relationship. I nursed my son until just past his third birthday, and I actually know a lot of kids over 2 still nursing. I think it just depends on what circles you run with. :)
It will just sort of wax and wane and you have to trust that she knows her needs where nursing is concerned. It's actually a great insight into her development.
N.F. answers from Minneapolis on October 15, 2008
It is very normal!
My little one weaned himself by 13 months but everything I had read said that they would start breastfeeding more at about 12 months. Are you thinking about weaning? When Luke started weaning I just encouraged him to eat a snack just before the time he would normal nurse...since he was full he didn't ask to nurse. I dropped one feeding every two weeks and had no pain and it went very smoothly for my little one. There are soo many different recommendations about how long you should breastfeed...my thought is that it should be for as long as you and your family are comfortable with it.
Congrats on making it to one year!
C.R. answers from Minneapolis on October 15, 2008
Perfectly normal. The World Health Organization actually recommends breastfeeding for at least the first two years as it's better for the health of the child and better for the health of the mom. Obviously not a lot of people here in the U.S. follow that for whatever reasons. But whatever you decide to do, it's normal for your daughter to go through spurts where all she wants is to nurse. Especially if she's teething or growing.
J.H. answers from Minneapolis on October 16, 2008
I am going through the same thing right now. My 14 month old has never really slowed down but within the last month or two she has been wanting to nurse all the time. She will pull at my shirt all the time. I don't think she is getting much milk and that she is doing it mostly for comfort. I am totally ok with it, I know that I will miss it when she is done. I nursed my other child until 13 months and was sad when she was done. I had the same question as you, why all of a sudden is she nursing MORE. Glad to hear you are still nursing, not everyone agrees with us who nurse past one year - but it is nice to hear there is support out there with all of your responses :)
L.G. answers from Minneapolis on October 15, 2008
Awesome! Of course it's normal and perfectly natural. I congratulate you because breastfeeding your child up to and past 1 yr. of age is helping her become immune to diseases later in life (e.g. Diabetes). As for myself, I hope to breastfeed my son until he is at least 1.5 yrs. old and if he wants to continue until he's 2, that's fine with me. (I just hope at that point he won't ask for it during family get-togethers, as that is the only time I can see it being awkward.) I've heard that in some cultures, moms breastfeed their children until they're 3 or even 4 years old! It just sounds odd to us Americans. Maybe if there wasn't such a "keep up with the Joneses" mentality here, it wouldn't be such an issue. Anyway, I think it's very cool that your daughter is still breastfeeding. Enjoy it. :)
A.S. answers from Minneapolis on October 16, 2008
The average WORLD weening age (when a child does it themselves) is age SEVEN!! :)
My son fed long term.
There could be a lot of reasons why yoru child is feeding more, as said, comfort, walking building muscle bones etc
It could also be that baby/child has been exposed to 'something' and is feeding more to get more anitbodies immunity from you. I do know children that have finished feeding and caught bugs or the mumps and have gone back to feeding naturally BEFORE any symptoms.
Breastfeeding is wonderful and very important for MANY reasons :)
K.K. answers from Minneapolis on October 15, 2008
Both my babies ramped up their nursing when they started walking. I figured it was a need for attachment to balance their new-found freedom and independence.
I'm still nursing the 15 month old.
Totally normal. Enjoy the closeness.
S.C. answers from Minneapolis on October 15, 2008
Good for you for sticking with breastfeeding this long. This is totally normal. Especially if she's growing, teething and maybe going through some anxiety about all these changes. I found that when my son really increased his nursing, if I tried to limit him, he wanted it more and if I let him nurse on demand, even though he wanted to nurse frequently, he got over it relatively quickly and went back to our normal routine. I think for him, it was a way to check in and make sure he was safe through all these changes and when I made the time he needed for nursing, he got through it ok. When I found myself saying no a lot, it seemed to make everything more extreme.
L. answers from Minneapolis on October 15, 2008
I believe it's totally normal. I nursed three kids, one until he was three. I worked during the day so I nursed them in the mornings and evenings. When you think about what is normal for a one year old, remember things weren't always the way they are now here in America. Bottles and sippy cups, formula and grocery stores with milk didn't always exist. All my kids preferred the breast over the bottle. Do what works for the two of you, but no need to worry about it :).