M.H. asks from York, PA on January 04, 2009
Breastfeed a 17 Month Old
Hello, I am still nursing my 17 month old son twice a day; in the morning when he wakes up and in the evening. I don't nurse him before bed so he doesn't falls asleep while eating, I don't want him to get dependent on it. I still nurse him because he wants to, I still enjoy it, and I believe it's still good for him. Yeah, he's my last one and I'm trying to hold on to it as long as I can, but not too long. My husband, mother-in-law, and a couple of my friends say enough is enough. Am I doing it too long? Should I be thinking about weaning him? Thank you for your thoughts.
So What Happened?™
THANK YOU SO MUCH for all the advice. Although much of it is what I expected, I guess I just needed to hear it from other “understanding” moms. PLUS, hoping my husband would read some of the responses and understand that it’s ok to keep nursing our son. He still thinks our son is too old, but that’s all the reason he gives. For those who wondered if it’s cutting into other responsibilities; no, it is not…but nice thought. We still have “time together”, housework gets done, I tend to the older brothers and their school work, etc. I also don’t do it outside the home anymore, just in bed in the morning in the living room at night. I don’t really care what my friends or mother-in-law think, just my husband. Will I keep doing it? Most likely. I would like him to wean himself. Like some of you said, it would bother me more if I weaned him. My older boys weaned themselves, both before they were one. It was more emotional for me, but at least they did it on their own. My second born showed less interest at 7 months, but did all I could, without pushing him, to hang on longer; I did get 2 ½ more months out of him. Thanks also for the resources a couple of you provided. HERE’S TO NURSING!!!
D.P. answers from Pittsburgh on January 04, 2009
I think the length of breast feeding is a personal decision that should be made by you, and you alone.
B.R. answers from Philadelphia on January 05, 2009
Seventeen months is NOT too long but this is coming from someone that nurses my children until they are 3 or so. The World Health Organizations recommends breastfeeding until at least the age of two and the AAP recommends "exclusive breastfeeding for approximately the first six months and breastfeeding for the first year and beyond as long as mutually desired by mother and child." Enough is not enough if it is still something you enjoy. It will only benefit your son for as long as you continue!
My youngest will be 3 in March. She still nurses a few times a day. I simply don't tell anyone that I know won't support me. I am kind of looking for a window of opportunity to wean her but I know right now isn't the time. I certainly don't want a traumatic end to this relationship so we will continue for now.
There are a couple of websites and discussion boards for nursing moms and many of them have extended breastfeeding forums. Don't know if I can post the names here so just google.
Good luck and good job!!
After reading the other responses here I think that Denise said it best. It is a personal decision. Not one that your family (even your husband) or friends can make for you.
1 mom found this helpful
M.M. answers from Philadelphia on January 05, 2009
I, too, say, Go, Girl!
I am mom to an only child, and knowing that when he was a baby, I nursed him til he was 2 1/2 ~
Only at nite at that point, but I caught the same flack from family members...
Hey, it was what worked for my son and for me. It certainly didn't hurt him!
He's healthy, well-adjusted and still loves to snuggle, but of course, not in front of his friends!
Gung Ho, my friend!
And p.s. I do great fundraisers with my business, if your church is in need of fundraising for anything!
1 mom found this helpful
J.H. answers from Erie on January 05, 2009
Good for you! Girl, if you're not ready to stop and your baby isn't ready don't!! I nursed our baby until she was 19 months old and I don't regret a second of it! You keep at it until you're both ready to wean and don't let ANYONE tell you otherwise! Here's a big hug to both of you!!!!!!
1 mom found this helpful
K.M. answers from Philadelphia on January 07, 2009
My hat is off to you! I breastfed my two for 27 and 25 months and had to remind myself not to say I was "still" breastfeeding. People made me feel like a nut. Now that my kids are 7 and 3, I can see how nuts I would be if I followed everyone else's ideas about how I should parent. You are breastfeeding your baby, period. Like any other parenting decision, those who don't like it (with the exception of a spouse, of course) can do as they please with their own children. More power to you!
D.S. answers from Allentown on January 05, 2009
Enjoy it as long as you can. A child is not a baby forever. Contact your local La Leche League representative for support at:
Hope this helps. D.
K.K. answers from Erie on January 05, 2009
I'm all for it.
Do hubby etc have legit reasons for thinking you should stop??? You are still taking care of your other responsabilities right? the world isn't stopping for 15 mins or a half hour everyday while you nurse? You aren't using it as an excuse for not having sex or something? If it bothers friends and mil, i would just not do it around them. If it's that they think the baby will be spoiled or isn't acting as independent as they think he should be, maybe work to point out other ways that you do expect him to act age appropriately.
Mostly i think it's their problem and you should continue if you and son are happy. but if you want to smooth things out with family those questions would be something to think about.
J.K. answers from Philadelphia on January 05, 2009
I agree that it is a personal decision, but the way you handle it can be a big facter. If you just whip out your boob at any old place and try to force your child to feed when he does not really want to, it can be a bit offensive to those around you. I have a "friend" who would kneel on her knees and let her 2 year old come up and take a sip while the other kids around were playing. Needless to say this made the other kids and moms around quite uncomfortable. I'm not saying that is what you are doing, but taking the child to a more private place can put those around you at ease.
B.K. answers from Pittsburgh on January 05, 2009
Hi M., I know it's hard, but I have to agree with your hubby...it's time to let go. Best wishes.