21 answers

Wean or Not to Wean? That Is the Question...

I am 6 months pregnant with my second child. My son just turned one year. I always thought I would have him weaned by his first birthday, but that didn't go as planned. He still seems to need it to comfort him to fall asleep, etc... Anyway, I am not sure I want to tandem nurse and was wondering if anyone had any good advice for me. The birth of my second child is fast approaching. I also do not want to wean him to near to the homecoming of our new addition because I don't want him to resent his sibling. Please let me know what your experience is...

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Here's some links for you with info.:


Good luck with whatever you decide... I know it's not easy.

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I wouldn't worry about weaning the older one. I have plenty of friends that are breastfeeding more than one child at a time. I would warn you against trying to make him the "big boy" who doesn't need the breast, because he really isn't and simply may not be ready to wean, you know? Tandem nursing is good for you anyway, it will make your fertility take even longer to come back. :)

1 mom found this helpful

Dear K.:

My children are 18 months apart and I reasoned it out the way you said. I did not want to fling my daughter aside and make her think that I was all about the new baby. Besides, it didn't make sense to experience all the bonding and nurturing and attachment parenting stuff and then suddenly deny a child something that they need. It seemed brutal and to this day, I'm glad I chose what I did.

I was in the same position you're in...needing to make a decision right away. I chose the gentle option. I continued to nurse during my pregancy and tandem nursed which was easier and cuter than you can imagine. At that point, I could have slowly begun the weaning process for the older child but then I chose to completely back off and let the children decide.

In my case, the children nursed longer than most people are comfortable with but by then I could see that the benefits outweighed the deficits (for our family, that is).

Weaning takes time and your child, being a boy, will take a bit longer. It's probably best if you wait until after the delivery to begin to wean him.

Best wishes,


1 mom found this helpful

There are 18 mos 2 days between my oldest two children. I nursed my oldest until he was 17 months old. He self-weaned because he didn't like getting kicked by his brother :-) After my son was born he tried nursing once and was completely done. I still snuggled with him and had him help with the baby and it worked out great.

If you don't make a big deal out of it he'll probably just stop on his own, but if you make a big deal out of weaning it will make him want it more. If he still wants to nurse when you have the baby then make sure you nurse the baby first and then him second. My sister did this with her kids (16 months apart) and it worked fine. Her daughter just decided that she didn't want to share anymore.

you have to do whats best for you. Having a new baby will be exuasting and with a 1 year old around, you wont get any rest. weaning your child now is hard, but will be much harder when the other child comes along. The one year old will get jealous, you need to give your child cuddling and book reading special time to let him or her know that they are still very special and you love him or her, but that the baby needs your milk to eat and that they can now have other good foods that the baby cant have yet. Good luck!

My mother helped me...It hurts when your child cryes for the bottle but you just have to stick with it and do the bottle thing less and less until you go all the way..

My daughter was the same age when I was pregnant with my second. I always thought I would have her weaned by then too, but things change. I thought that maybe she would wean herself while I was pregnant and I wasn't sure about tandem nursing either, but well ... now I am a tandem nurser. I saw that my daughter still really needed the comfort of breastfeeding and I didn't want her to resent the baby as well. We have been tandem nursing for 3 months now and everything is going well, in fact, I think it has created an even greater bond between my girls because when they do nurse at the same time my older one holds the baby's hand or strokes her face. It's really very sweet. Another thing that has been a benefit is that I am able to still maintain that bond with my older daughter and not feel as guilty that she isn't getting the attention she used to. Don't get me wrong it is a much bigger burden on you, but for me it has been worth it because I know I am doing what is best for my child. (Personally I had a harder time dealing with nursing during the first trimester) Decide what you think is best for you and your son and don't worry about what other people say. I got plenty of opinions about the fact that my daughter wasn't weaned yet, but I don't let them concern me. Good luck.

Have you heard of "Adventures in Tandem Nursing"? I haven't read it yet (too many other books I want to read right now and I just don't read fast enough) but I've heard wonderful things about it.

I'm 18 weeks pregnant and still nursing my 18-month-old. I plan on continuing until she's ready to wean and I always encourage everyone to do just that. I really feel that it's best for the older child and doesn't hurt anyone else involved unless you aren't taking enough nutrition for sustaining the pregnancy, yourself and the breastfeeding relationship.

Also, many children end up weaning during pregnancy, some claim that the milk tastes funny. Once the baby is born, some return to nursing and love the taste of the new milk. As for jealousy issues, I think tandem nursing is best if your older child hasn't self-weaned. Both the kids get to share mommy and share the wonderful experience of nursing together.

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