My son likes playing with my breast while b/f. is it normal

Linda - posted on 06/27/2010 ( 101 moms have responded )

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My son likes massaging my other breast while he breast feed if i try to stop him he cries and doesnt want to take his hands off the booby. Is that normal?

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Debbie - posted on 07/08/2010

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there was a group of Mothers who made a breastfeeding necklace for them to play with..... I encouraged my babies to play with the buttons, or touch my skin but not play with the other nipple.... i told them it hurt a little...just to stop the behavior it worked...

Teresa - posted on 06/27/2010

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My daughter used 2 start massaging the other breast when the one she was feeding on was near empty so when she switched the massaged one was all ready to go.

Chris - posted on 07/04/2010

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my son has done this since he was an infant. Some days.... he is a bit rougher than others, but for the most part I just let him do his thing.

Heidi - posted on 06/28/2010

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My son likes to grab a small amount of skin on the same side and squeeze. He also likes to grab hair (even when he is not eating). The only way that I can get him to eat without scratching or hair pulling it to put socks on his hands. It took a few months, but every time that he did it I put a sock on his hand, and now he hardly does it at all. Great use for the socks that are too small LOL.

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Shelley - posted on 07/08/2010

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I would definitely say it is normal, as in previous post they are like a kitten. My son used to pull on his hair or lay his hand on my breast, enjoy it, those little things will become precious memories later on.. I couldnt breastfeed for as long as I would have liked due to illness, (had to stop breastfeeding when he was just under 4 months).. I treasure those little memories.. If you dont feel comfortable with your lo doing it then give your lo something else to hold/ touch/squeeze.. Goodluck

Jessica - posted on 07/08/2010

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my son does this too! i've found that if i put a mitten on the hand that is hurting (usually he's squeezing me) that he instead just massages. i heard that it's a natural form of let-down that the baby induces when they do this??

Sandra - posted on 07/08/2010

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My son is 17months and has always touched my breasts while breast feeding and when he isn't i always think it is just another comfort to him. Like you i wondered if it was normal but i say well what comes natural to him must be okay. I say to heck what others think!

Maree - posted on 07/08/2010

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Very normal. Its comforting for him. My girl no longer breastfeeds but still likes to hold my boob for comfort if tired or upset.

Sarah - posted on 07/08/2010

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You're lucky all he does is a little massage! My daughter would actually give me a little "titty twister" while she nursed. My husband would tell me she was "tuning in Tokyo." The second she began nursing, she would start playing with the other nipple. She would get upset if I tried to take her hand away, so I just let her twist away (thank goodness I have nips of steel)
I never spoke to an expert about it, but it just seems to be a soothing mechanism for them...

Sue - posted on 07/08/2010

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My daughter does the same thing! I don't mind except at night. I usually fall back asleep while she nurses, but I can't when she's doing that. I think it's a comfort thing, for sure not abnormal.

Annette - posted on 07/08/2010

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normal and expected...it's usually the child's smart way of helping the milk let down on the other side. I know it's not "in the brochure" but it should be...EVERY child does this to my knowledge! :) Just decide where your limits are...I just draw the line at nipple pinching...I don't like that in ANY capacity...so I redirect him.

Evie - posted on 07/07/2010

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Both of my kids did this but my son began to pinch so I had to make him stop. I made some nursing beads for him to play with while I fed. You can buy them on ebay if you don't want to make them:)

Tine - posted on 07/07/2010

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Totally normal! My 20month old daughter is still doing this .. the scientific explanation is that it releases the hormone oxytocin in you,which stimulates milk production as well as helps bonding with yout baby, and relaxes both of you. So it's a good thing!
Breasts have become so sexulaised in our culture that it's easy to feel weird about such things, but breastfeeding isyour breasts being used for thier natural purpose, and your baby knows best how to get them to work for him!
The only downside of this habit for me is when my daughter uses her fingernails and gets rough! Happily I can now tell her, "gentle, gentle" and gently remove her hands when she's hurting me, and she's getting the idea ... that and keeping her nails well trimmed!!
:-) You're doing excellently!! :-)

Tiffany - posted on 07/07/2010

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OMG, thank goodness this is something normal. My son is almost 13 months and does the same thing EVERY time he nurses. I don't mind when he toy's with it but when he pinches, that drives me crazy. Now I'm wondering if it's too late to try the nursing necklace? But for now I just play games with his fingers until he's done nursing.

Diane - posted on 07/07/2010

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My son did the same thing. I talked to numerous other moms that say their children did it also. As far as I know, it's normal. :)

Casandra - posted on 07/07/2010

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I think it is normal, my son does it all the time and like other moms have said unless he's hurting me I don't mind much at all. He's one smart and creative lil bugger and I love him dearly. So if it comforts him, to an extent, I will allow it.



*oh and sometimes if you feel uncomfortable just grab a toy, thats what I do when it gets to be a tad uncomfortable.

A - posted on 07/07/2010

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My son does this as well, but I never try to stop- him. If I did, he would probably just laugh when I took his hand away and try to touch it again. If I kept stopping him he might get upset. Would you stop your son from touching your arm or leg? Probably not. They are just curious and want to see what its all about and learn and explore by touching. Our society has sexualized our breasts but between you and your son theres nothing sexual going on. Some guys are leg men too and find legs attractive yet we don't stop our children from touching our leg out of curiosity. If you still aren't comfortable with it I would try giving your son something else to play with and explore, like wearing a necklace he can touch, or I like to let my son explore my face and learn my body parts like my mouth, nose, eyes and ears. He's 13 months and can point to all those parts on my head when I say the word. I also take his hand and "eat" it with my mouth as I'm teaching him "mouth" and rub my nose on his hand when learning nose, blink my eyes on his fingers during "eyes". It keeps him entertained and learning too.



Like others have said it is instinct as well and can help the milk get flowing. He has touched my breasts since birth but the way he touches them has changed throughout the months. He used to just be able to pinch/scratch them and now he really actually pats and massages them, whether we're feeding or not.

Eunice - posted on 07/07/2010

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my friends son doesnt breastfeed anymore but he cant sleep without touching his mothers boob. i think its completely normal cos my daughter does the same as ur son....i find it funny.

[deleted account]

It's a biologically natural/instinctual thing to do ... babies/toddlers get more milk that way. It only seems weird/abnormal if and when we impose our own grown-up way of thinking into the equation ... kids have no clue about sexual things when they are so little.

Gloria - posted on 07/07/2010

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yup my son does all of the above. at first i thought it wasn't normal, but after reading it's completely normal. enjoy!!

Aoife - posted on 07/07/2010

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Totally normal. I am no longer breastfeeding my 9 month old baby girl & she still likes to pat them when feeding or even just cuddling. No matter what I am wearing she gets her hand in there. LOL! It is just a comfort thing & I think, though I am no expert at all, it must go back to the skin-to-skin contact etc. She even likes to cuddle in around my tummy & give it a pat at times..time for sit-ups I think! Anyway I quite like it, & it brings me back to the closeness we had when breastfeeding which I miss at times; it's just such a nice, natural, intimate bond, which I know wont last long so I wont stop it. If it isn't hurting or annoying you go for it!

Cinda - posted on 07/07/2010

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I think it's normal, just annoying. Mine does it all the time too. Sometimes he likes to JUST play....acts like he wants to nurse & then just plays w/ them & won't nurse but gets mad when I put them away. He not only likes to rub, message, etc. but also likes to play with the nipple of the breast he's not nursing on. It's been more & more of a battle lately. He'll be 19 months next week.

Claire - posted on 07/07/2010

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It's very normal :-)! If it bothers you try giving him something else to play with such as a muslin cloth - it worked for us X

Alexa - posted on 07/07/2010

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My daughter (13 months) just started doing this about a month ago... she used to play with my face or pinch my neck! When she's digging at my other boob it tickles and is kind of annoying! I'll probably miss it when she finally weans lol

Shelley - posted on 07/07/2010

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My son pinches with one hand on top and pinches/tickles with the other. that is why some people get those Mommy Necklaces.

Cassandra - posted on 07/07/2010

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I would say so. My son always likes to loop what ever arm is on top though my bra and under the breast he's not nursing from and the other arm he always pats my back. Sometimes he even just pats the breast he's nursing from.

Rashae - posted on 07/07/2010

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Mine did it and I asked my lc about it and she said when they do that it allows the breast milk to flow faster once they get to that side so it's really normal!!!

[deleted account]

Totally normal. My oldest didn't do anything like that, but my youngest did. She would literally "knead" my breast, right above where her lips were...and she'd use her nails! Even if I kept them trimmed, it would still hurt...so, I started giving her my shirt and eventually she moved on, so she either just moves her arm around (stroking her head and then me) or holds onto my shirt.

Jennifer - posted on 07/07/2010

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Totally normal! He is only showing affection to you (and to your boob!)... Seriously, the boob is his source of nutrition and comfort, and its attached to the MOST important person in his life! He's just telling the boob he appreciates it! LOL

My daughter self-weaned at 18 months. Shortly after, I was stretching upon waking up, and my boob popped out of my pj top. DD literally took a flying leap onto it! My first thought was she wanted to nurse (although I'd stopped lactating at that point from non-use), but she just wanted to hug my boob! She even gave the underside of it a kiss! Hubby and I, after we were done cracking up, decided she was pretty much saying "oh, hello old friend! I may not need you anymore, but I still love you!"

Enjoy this special time with your son!

Carrie - posted on 07/07/2010

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yes, perfectly normal. My son, Landon, he will pat, stoke and just down right play with my breast. I am going to hate it when i have to stop b/f because i enjoy it so much. For some reason he spits up my milk ALOT and then when i give him a supplement (like Similac) he hardly spits up at all. What gives?

Christina - posted on 07/06/2010

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oh yes, I have 3 girls and my littlest one which is 3 1/2 still does that she loves them it sometime bugs me but whatevr it helps her relax so im cool with it.

Jillian - posted on 07/06/2010

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I wear a long chain, my daughter goes to the chain and plays with it.. Just try to get them to focus on other things..

Crystal - posted on 07/06/2010

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LOL it must be b/c my daughter (jan 15th 2010) does the exact same thing. I think its kind of cute actually and when i remove her hand she she searches til she finds it. I think its ok nothing to it. Keep up the good work!

Brittani - posted on 07/06/2010

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My 11 month old son does the same thing! I let him, as long as he doesnt pinch!

Cindy - posted on 07/06/2010

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My son does that too, he strokes my breasts and gently pinches as well. He also comes off my breast and looks at the nipple and then touches it. I figure he is just exploring an object, in his opinion. He does the same kind of thing with toys and other objects too. Babies are just trying to figure out the world and that is one way to do it.

Sheila - posted on 07/06/2010

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I guess it is because my daughter does the same thing. I guess it's their way of finding extra comfort, but I try to distract her by letting her touch my face then I kiss her hand.

Diane - posted on 07/04/2010

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Yes it's normal. It seems a little weird to people sometimes because we're used to looking at breasts in a sexual way but it's important to remember that your baby isn't looking at them that way at all, he's just curious and girls do the same thing. If it bothers you maybe you can try giving him a toy that he only gets at nursing time and see how that goes, but I certainly wouldn't worry or make a big deal about it.

[deleted account]

My 7mth old daughter does something similar. I think it is there way of exercising their control...I figure they are just going to be Type A personalities!!! Hang in there I am sure it is just a phase like most other things!!!

Maria - posted on 07/04/2010

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Of course that is normal! Not only does it stimulate the flow of milk, but it is very soothing for baby. As long as he is gentle and is not hurting you, it is a precious and wonderful bonding experience for you both. If he gets aggressive or pinches (my boy used to hit my face and try and pinch my other nipple) I suggest giving him a small squeezable stuffed animal that he can easily grasp with one hand to distract him. It works like a charm for us.

Christie - posted on 07/04/2010

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Very normal :) I think it's an instinctual thing to help massage your ducts as if you were expressing :) Both my children have cupped and or massaged my breast while feeding as soon as they had good control of their hands. If it's making you uncomfortable you can get great feeding/nursing neclaces to give them something else to fiddle with while they feed. But if you are both happy I wouldn't be at all concerned :) Keep up the good work!

Sarah - posted on 07/04/2010

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My 7 month old daughter does the same thing recently... pinching REALLY hard, and when I move her hand away she cries and gets mad... she usually does it when she is really tired just before she settles down to sleep. She also tries to do the same thing on my face or arm, and if her nails are long she scratches me... I currently have a little scratch on my lip. But again, she doesnt scratch purposely, its from the pinching she does, and its when she is tired. I'll try letting her hold a toy maybe.

Cassandra - posted on 07/03/2010

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My daughter still does that and she's 2. She likes to like roll it and put it between her fingers, sometimes she even says "please mom" lol. My mom likes to tell everyone that story.. =)

Dawn - posted on 07/03/2010

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My son will run his hand up my shirt, or play with my hair when he nurses. He went through a phase where he would seem to be trying to punch my boob. My husband and I joked about him trying to make a milkshake. I think it is all normal. They don't understand anything about social grace nor do they care...

Amanda - posted on 07/03/2010

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Yep...its normal. I wondered the same thing until I realized he was just feeling the skin. Babies LOVE skin on skin contact and it really helps them be more alert as well. My son would knead my breast sometimes...almost like he was making bread...it actually made me laugh cause I could tell he was just trying to get used to the feel of my skin. But now that he's getting to be 6 months...he doesn't just "feel" he's grabbing and squeezing things now. My cheeks, glasses, fingers...anything he can get his hands on...he squeezes it. My cousin tells me "just wait until he starts POKING" things...but...meh...he's not hurting me so I don't care. Its really up to how its making you feel. But, like I said...skin to skin contact is really good for growing and developing babies. It stimulates all kinds of things in their body and brain development.

Annamarie - posted on 07/03/2010

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Normal, but if you don't like it, you can put a stop to it. My daughter was the same and I was fine with it for a while. But I hit a point where I didn't like it anymore. She doesn't have a lovey and I realized my boob was her lovey. She got really upset at first when I made her stop, but I kept at it. I just pulled my shirt tight over that side and would pull her hand away sometimes distracting her elsewhere. It really didn't take too long for her to get used to the new 'rule'. And she started attaching to various potential 'loveys' within a day lol

Michelle - posted on 07/03/2010

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My son sometime stops feeding to poke at my nipple, I've noticed he dose it with his bottle too I dont let him but if I cover my breast he crys I guess sometimes he just needs a breather and is still checking stuff out(btw he is now one so dont worry) also don't worry if he hits him self while BFing he just dosnt want to go to sleep.

Amy - posted on 07/03/2010

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By the looks of it, according to all these replies, it is a normal thing. My daughter man handles my boobs and pinches my nipples (hurts!) and does it awake or asleep while nursing. I think it is like that kneading/claw diggin thing cats do. They do that as kittens when nursing and then they do it as adults when they are sleeping (to their owner or whatever they are sleeping on). It is for soothing and comfort. If it hurts, play with his hands with your free hand. That is what I do. Toys will distract the baby and make them wake up. Not cool if you are trying to put them down for a nap or for the night!!!!!

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