how long is too long to breast feed?

Char - posted on 08/01/2009 ( 27 moms have responded )

11

7

0

my oldest daughter was breast fed till she was 13 months and some people thought i was strange for that. i believe that when the baby is ready they will ween themselves off. my husband thinks it has been too long already and olivia is only 4 months... what if she doesn't want to stop till she's 3?? is that too old??

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Bronwen - posted on 08/07/2009

1

10

0

I nursed my daughter until she was 3 and she slept in my bed until then. All is well. She is 6 and very self confident, happy. Weaning was easy and she even started sleeping in her own bed at the same time. Read anything Dr. Sears writes about on Attachment Parenting and you will see the benefits. My doctor looked at me like I had 3 heads when I breast fed past 1 year. Talk with people that support you and ignore the rest.

Marabeth - posted on 08/05/2009

394

7

39

the american academy of pediatrics and world health organization both recommend breastfeeding exclusively (no supplemental anything) for the first six months and then in combination with other food until at least two years of age. and after that for as long as is mutually desired between mother and child. i believe in chid-led weaning, that is the only way you truly know if your child got all of the benefits possible. they will always wean themselves eventually. its ultimately your daughter's and your decision, not your husband's, sorry if that sounds mean. :) maybe find information supporting extended breastfeeding and show him.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

27 Comments

View replies by

Mary - posted on 10/30/2009

31

23

2

I'm hoping to breastfeed for at least the first year so I can avoid purchasing formula altogether! From what I understand, breastfeeding is much more widely accepted in European countries than in the USA. And it is not uncommon for a woman to breastfeed into a child's second or third year. I think it is a personal decision. I want to go for at least 12 months, maybe longer. But it is a pain in the butt for me to pump everyday at work, so I will for certain reduce my daughter to only nursing in the morning and evening if I do continue past one year.

[deleted account]

There really isn't such a thing as "too long." You can do it as long as you and the baby are still enjoying it.

Michelle - posted on 10/29/2009

2

5

0

I'm still nursing my 7month old and hope to until ~12 months. Most pediatricians recommend breastfeeding until 12 months so don't let anyone make you feel uncomfortable. If you want to feed longer than 12 months that is completely up to you. However, since I work full time I am looking foward to not pumping!

Amy - posted on 10/26/2009

6

13

0

I don't think that's too old....I have heard of mothers nursing their children until the age of 7....I know that is prob a little extreme, but I really feel that's it's a personal choice between you and the child.

Kathryn - posted on 10/25/2009

7

0

0

I think "too long" to breastfeed is anything past the child being self-weaned, whether she is 2 years old or 5 years old.

I hope my now-7 month old makes it to at least 2 years (base goal) and hopefully she'll still be going at age 3.

Michelle - posted on 10/25/2009

19

19

0

i think either when they start walking or they hit the one year mark. that's when it can be considered too old. my son is 7 months and is pretty much walking and on the sippy cup and he didn't breast feed for a single day because he wouldn't take to the breast and i even tried pumping and he wouldn't take it out of the bottle either. plus it was close to a week after i had him before i even produced milk. no one can tell you what to do, it's all just a personal choice between you and your child.

Ebony - posted on 10/25/2009

7

21

0

my mum breast fed me till i was around 3. I breast fed my son until he was 15mths and only stopped because he was using it more as comfort and not as food. I am now breast feeing my 7mth old daughter and plan to do the same as i did with my son, she'll let me know when its time and im fine with that. Good luck and dont let anyone sway you either way

[deleted account]

There is no way 4 months is to old. Breastfeeding has all pros and no cons. Maybe your husband is feeling left out or jealous. Pump some milk and let your husband feed the baby. Its still your milk but your husband will feel more included.

Lyndsay - posted on 10/21/2009

3

15

0

Go with your gut. Breast milk is suposed to be the best thing for your baby. My only thought is that if they are old enough to walk over to you and ask for it they might be a little to old.

Kathy - posted on 10/20/2009

145

18

24

you do what feels right for you and your baby . this is coming from a formula feeding mom . feeding is your choice and your GOD given right . you and your husband need to sit down and discuss both or your concerns and come to decision all three of you are happy with. but don't let other moms sway your decsion . you know what's right for you and your family . good luck and god bless you.

Dezaray - posted on 10/20/2009

7

15

0

Tell him no way! I breast fed all my children until they were two...people don't stop giving a baby formula untill the baby is one so why should you stop breast feeding before then?

Pamela - posted on 10/14/2009

486

25

42

I think 3 is to old yes after 12 -18 months there is no reason. Breast milk is still best I guess but they should be introduced to a healthy diet long before this and be eating right enough so they get enough vitamins and minerals from the food so the breast milk is just comfort. I am hugely in favour of breastmilk I even donated my milk to the milk bank at the childrens hospital for the premmie babies.

My first son started walking at 8 and a half months and had already weaned himself to 2 feeds a day it was hard to keep him still long enough to get a decent feed from me so at 9 month we stopped I was also 4 months pregnant again by then. Unfortunately with my second he had a floppy larynx so did not feed well at all and my milk started to run dry thats why I started donating 1 to help the bubs out that where not to lucky and strong and 2 to keep my milk supply up but alas at 4 and a half months I ran dry.



I think its all a personal preference but me I felt odd when my son started walking up to me pulling at my shirt and just playing with my nipples instead of feeding. I would much rather a lovely cuddle from him which I get alot of now.. I never found breast feeding a comfort for me or a great bonding thing like some people do for me its was the the best milk I could give him and after he was eating well enough and somewhat independent ( off on adventures) I didn't feel the need to keep trying to get him to feed he was just not interested.

Lori-Dawn - posted on 10/13/2009

6

3

0

I nursed my daughter until my milk ran dry due to another pregnancy when she was 2 1/2 yrs old...and then after my son was born a couple weeks before she turned 3 she wanted to try some again but had forgotten how...lol So for me it's whatever is comfortable for you and your toddler...and for what it's worth the WHO (world health organization) recommends breastfeeding until 2yrs old...also want to add that when they turn 18 months your breastmilk gives your child a booster shot of nutrients that do wonders for their immune system...which is perfect for those who don't immunize...

Catie - posted on 08/09/2009

2

35

1

I think that is wonderful that you want your child to ween herself, I wanted to ween my son around a year, but he started solids at 4 1/2 mos. and decided that he was done. I think 2-3 is acceptable. and as long as your not flaunting it around like some people who say "well i breast-fed my child till they were ready, and they weren't ready till 10 or 11....." I believe that is ridiculous. I would research on the topic but i believe that it's 18 months that breast milk is specialized to help your child develop. I would show your husband that information and talk about it and come up with a solution between the two of you.

[deleted account]

Hi. I dont think 3 is too old. I fed my first for 10 months until he self weened. I will aim to feed my second for a year. I know people who are still feeding over one year to 3 years. I think you should be commended for doing as much as possible.

Char - posted on 08/08/2009

11

7

0

thank you everyone for your words of wisdome!! i'm so glad that everyone isn't looking at me like i'm crazy!! haha i thought i was the only one who wanted to breast feed till 3!! i was breast fed till i was almost 4 and i am a happy and healthy individual!! i'm so glad for the support that i have here... you really all have helped!

Fathima - posted on 08/07/2009

35

12

5

I think you should breastfeed for however long you feel comfortable with and for however long baby wants to. There is no time limit. My sister breastfed her son till he was 3 and he weaned himself off because he started feeling shy about it! I wish I could breastfeed exclusively but due to the fact that I work I am unable to and it is almost impossible for me to pump at work. I say breastfeed till you can't anymore!

Evelyn - posted on 08/05/2009

27

12

2

No way, its not too old. The recommendations are at least two years now. I agree with you though, that the baby will wean his or herself. But I think you should educate your hubby on all the benefits (or reinforce) and emphasize that you're making his child as healthy as possible! My husband has been very supportive and encouraging. I even feel guilty when I occasionally supplement with formula because I know formula is not the absolute best for my baby. Don't worry about anyone thinking it's weird...it's the natural thing to do!

Jennifer - posted on 08/05/2009

47

6

0

I replied the first time to the wrong person!! LOL!!

I weaned my first about 10 days before she was 18 months (she's 2 1/2 now and would probably still be going if I let her..probably because she would act like a bottle or a pacifier was made of poison and she used me as her soother)....my second is now 4 months and I hope to at least go until her first birthday. I'll take my cues from her...this one actually takes a pacifier so she's more content between feedings than my first one was. The only thing is, I am a SAHM and if they won't take a bottle, your social life is kind of on hold until you stop....that's what it was like for me the first time so this time I'll see how it goes....

I'm in Canada and the food guideline here recommends that a baby be exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months and not be introduced to any solids before then (unless your milk is not satisfying enough....I am blessed that mine is/was).....

I don't know why your husband thinks 4 months is too long...it's a far cry from 3 years....give it a chance...Once they get about 15-18 months and they're on all kinds of solids, it's possible your baby could wean herself from you....that happened to my sister in law....

Hope this made sense...and that it helps!

Carianne - posted on 08/05/2009

89

20

14

I started weaning my first around 10 months (she was still eating every 3 hours during the day and I was SO tired of pumping at work!), but she wasn't fully weaned until 14 mos. This time around I'm a SAHM so I'm going to let him decide when he's ready to stop. A friend of mine nursed her twin girls till they were 2 1/2. She loved it!

Kim - posted on 08/05/2009

6

33

1

Of my 4 children only 1 would/could breastfeed exculively. I planned on nursing him for 12 months because they shouldn't have cow's milk before then, but it took until 14 months to fully ween him (he liked to fall alseep nursing so we got down to nap and bedtime only then finaly weaned onto a pacifier to sleep with- which I took away at age 2.) My husband started to give me a hard time too. He would ask if I plan on passing our son off to his wife. LOL I know people who nurse their kids until they are 5, I do not nessicarily agree but that is their business. Basically the bottom line is do what you feel is best for your family. If your husband is not supportive of nursing that long and your daughter is getting nutrition elsewhere you may need to rethink your plans to keep family peace. Good luck.

Jennifer - posted on 08/04/2009

301

0

46

No, that's not too long. My son is also 4 months old and I plan on breastfeeding him for as long as he wants to. A friend of mine breastfed her daughter until she turned 3, but she stopped because she started working outside the home.

Kathleen - posted on 08/01/2009

24

13

3

i dont think its to old. i was breastfed until i was 15 months old and i think if you want to breastfeed her til she is 3 then go for it

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms