extended breastfeeding...

Ashleigh - posted on 08/26/2010 ( 16 moms have responded )

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Im STILL getting frowned apon and rude comments from people, especially some of my family in general about breastfeeding. My daughter is 16 months and i am more than happy to nurse her:) 90% of the people that disapprove have NEVER breastfed before. What are you strories on extended breastfeeding??

My mother in law gives me the most lecture about it. She addmited to not knowing anything about breastfeeding yet she still thinks its 'gross' and my daughter is 'to old' BUT, not one of her other grandchildren is as INTELEGENT as my daughter....HAHA to her. im just doing the family a favor, raising a genius:)

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Jodi - posted on 08/30/2010

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I have just made it very clear to those in my life that that this is our choice, I have supplied them facts about the endless benefits of breastfeeding, at any age made it clear that if they can't at least accept that we're nursing with no end in sight just yet then we don't need to come around to endure negative remarks. BTW, I'm still nursing my 18 month old and I'm 4 months pregnant. Hang in there, stand up for yourself and keep faith in what you're doing! You are doing a GREAT job!!!!

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Yesica - posted on 04/13/2015

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Im in the same situation.
i get alot of negative feedback, but on the bright side my 15 month old has never ever gotten sick so..... :)

Merry - posted on 09/23/2010

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I'd just say the bare minimum is 2 years, any less and I'm risking her health. And if you say 'full term nursing' instead of extended nursing it helps to show that you aren't the unusual one, try are. Truth be told every baby would benefit from nursing a minimum of two years. And NATURAL weaning can not be before 2.5 years with an average of 4.4 years and a top of 7-8 years. So just give them the facts and tell them to stop feeling guilty. You should never feel guilty for doing what our daughter needs, even if others Feeling bad they didn't do as well.

Cassandra - posted on 09/23/2010

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my mother in law is the same way. i nursed my oldest till he was 16 months, my second son till he was 14 moths and while my baby is only 8 n half months(so i'm still nursing him). i could care less of what ppl say or think. which i heard alot and don't care. ur doing the right thing:) qiut when u and ur daughter r ready!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Laura - posted on 09/21/2010

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i breast fed for 2 and a half years and some of the comments from well meaning (never breastfed but straight to the bottle) friends used to amaze me. things like the baby only benefits for the first few weeks , its no good for you (the mom) lol

Ashleigh - posted on 08/30/2010

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You have to just ignore rude remarks or have comeback(not something snarky,more like facts to back you up)and continue to do whats right and best for you and your DD.
I have nursed 4 boys.My first til he was 19mo.Number2 til he was 20mo.Number 3 till he was 22mo,I was 7mo pregnant with # 4 at that time.I am currently nursing a 71/2 month old,and part-time nursing my 32mo.old son who decided he wanted to nurse again.He only does it for a few minutes a day,but it reassures him that i love him and that hes my baby too.I hate listening to ppls remarks about how my kids were/are too old.I have become very adept at shutting them up with a dirty look or a fact about nursing.You are doing a great job.You keep doing what you're doing.

Marcy - posted on 08/30/2010

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My son turned 4 the end of July and that was the last time he nursed. If he had it his way he'd probably pack my boobs in his suitcase when he goes to college. Just kidding. Honestly, I think once you get past the whole (year to year in a half mark) when most people expect you to wean the rude comments die down and they just think you are certifiable nuts at that point LOL. My mother was so put out by the whole thing I can just add nursing to my list of things that I have done in my life to irritate her. My point is, I think many/most nursing mommies (especially us mommies who went longer than a year) have a limited support network. The thing is, honestly by them being put off by you nursing it takes the focus off of anything else you could be doing wrong....Okay, that was a joke but in a way its true. I guess I just have a thick backbone. If you must be polite then just listen, say thanks and walk away....good luck!

[deleted account]

My daughter will be 14 months old in a matter of days. We are still breastfeeding, not nearly as often however, as I'm no longer her only food source. I usually BF her once in the morning, two shorter feeds during the day, and one before bedtime.

I've had my share of dirty looks from people passing by; even when my daughter was much younger.

I've had many people asking me when I'm going to ween her, people telling me that she's too old to still be breastfeeding.

The most recent time this happened to me was with a friend of my mother (who has never had any children). I went to the other room to feed my daughter, while visiting her at her home. From the other room I heard her telling my mother that my daughter is too old, its gross, she should be on a bottle by now, etc. I never said anything to her when I returned, but I really wanted to give her a piece of my mind.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how I could handle a situation like this if it should arise in the future..?

Ashley - posted on 08/27/2010

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Well, hmmmm. The only advice I could give is just be very matter of fact about the issue. I have hurt some feelings, but I tend to be very blunt about my wants as a parent and on my parenting decisions. I am 6 months pregnant and still (unappologetically) nursing my 2 year old twins. When I was pregnant with my boys and made it clear that I would be nursing them everyone acted like I was crazy and would throw in the towel once I realized "how much harder" it was. I personally have found it to be a very fulfilling experience that I wouldn't trade for the world. Once they were born everyone was very curious about how long I would nurse. I told them my goal was at least one year. I was a first time mom, I had very few family members and friends that had nursed before and I had no idea if it would be easy or hard for me and my boys.
When we made it to a year I realized that none of us were ready to stop. They were still nursing almost as often as they did when they were just a few months old, I still had a ton of milk to offer and they weren't really eating solids very well or often. They preferred me and my milk to almost all other food. When it was brought up that they were still nursing my mother very bluntly said "I thought you were going to wean them at a year, what happened to that?" To which I responded "well, I am the mama and I reserve the right to change my mind, remember?" This is what she would tell me whenever I would mention something I would do with the boys that I never thought I would ever do, like make my own babyfood or cosleep. She would always tell me that parenting was a process and you could go into it with a plan, but plans change.
Anyhow, the months went on and very regularly I would be asked things like "are you any closer to weaning them" or "how often do they nurse now". I have finally just started telling anyone who asks that I am nursing until they are both done. I am not going to force them into weaning for the sake of other peoples feelings and they aren't ready yet. Then I got pregnant and the questions started back up. Only this time they were basically telling me that I needed to wean instead of asking me when. Again, I just stated that when they are done I will be done and they aren't done yet.
In all honesty, I never thought I would still be nursing my boys at 25 months, nor did I think I would be nursing them while pregnant. But this is the fact of my world. I am in it for the good, the bad and the milky. Baby #3 will be here in about 13 weeks and at this point I have decided that unless my boys wake up one day and decide theyare done nursing, then we will have to share booby time with little brother. At this point in the game I think that even if I weaned them tomorrow, once baby gets here they will be right back up in my lap asking for it like they never stopped. I don't need the stress, nor do they. They have enough changes going on right now.
Good luck, ignore the naysayers and feel confident in your decision to continue nursing your sweet lil one. If all else fails everytime someone says something negative counter it with something fact based and positive. My personal go-tos are "the average age for weaning across the world is between 3 and 5 years" and "studies have shown that the longer a mother nurses the less chance of getting breast cancer for her and her daughter".

Angela - posted on 08/27/2010

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my son was nursed until he was 16 months old. I nursed him once a day and at night, then only at nights until he was 18 months old, at that point I ran out of milk and just gave him a sippy of water at night. I see nothing wrong with nursing. the WIC office and LLL tell you to breastfeed until they are 2.

Samantha - posted on 08/27/2010

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I rather think the boob fetish is caused by not nursing long enough. The US has low BF rates yet American men love big chested women...

Celeste - posted on 08/27/2010

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I have 3 kids and all of them nursed beyond a year. My daughter nursed til she was 17 months. I have almost 4 year old twin boys, one recently weaned and the other one is on his way to weaning.

My mom only nursed us for a few weeks and my other siblings didn't have any kids at this time. I remember one Mother's Day, my boys were not even 2 yet. My mom and sister started in on me. My sister said that they were going to have a boob fetish (I guess my mom didn't nurse my brother long enough since he's gay!!) My mom said that if they had to be off the bottle by a year, then they should be off the breast by a year. It really pissed me off.

So I emailed them about the benefits, how I didn't appreciate them being like that. My sister has never said anything about it, but my mom has said some snide remarks about it, but i just ignore it.

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My youngest is 27 months and still breastfeeding round the clock. I'm pregnant and I think that is why he is nursing more now than before I was. Anyway yes I still get the comments, but I decided when my oldest was only a few months old that this was OUR (my husband and I) baby and we will do what we think is is their best interest even if it means smiling at unwelcome comments from family while I pull up my shirt :) Or better yet while my 2 year old pulls it up and says take off your bra mommy! I get the "gross" comment a lot and I just don't get it! What is gross about nurturing your child? My usual remark is well if my son is trying to get into his girlfriend's bra and still trying to get in mine THEN we will have a talk about it! Most people in my family don't know what to say to that! I have found that with both of my children the toddler years were much more entertaining to nurse than than the baby times. The names they come up with and the way they will pull off and giggle or even talk to you are priceless memories that I get to cherish even if everyone I know thinks it is gross. I still nurse my 2 year old wherever if I feel he really needs it at that moment. If we are out shopping or eating and he is having a meltdown it is much easier on him and myself to just stop and relax for a moment at the breast. He doesn't usually stay on very long before he is distracted and certainly trumps the tantrum on the spot. If he just wants to nurse because he can or bored I usually ask him to wait until we get home and he is ok with that. He knows there are "rules" when we are out in public...like no twiddling the other nipple or for that matter even getting it out and I make him lay across me so I am more covered. Otherwise he would yank my shirt up and nurse sitting up so he can look around and I am not comfortable with that. We only do that at home. Like I said very entertaining as they get older and gives me a good reason to "go to the couch" as he would say :)

Dara - posted on 08/26/2010

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I stopped breastfeeding when my oldest was a year, and will probably nurse my youngest a little longer, as she doesn't seem even close to ready yet at ten months. I think that people who frown on breastfeeding are simply ignorant about it, and have no idea how beneficial it is for the baby, no matter how old they are. What people in western society don't seem to understand is that this milk is made specifically for your baby, and it is absolutely the best thing you can give them. I would tell my family, and other dissaprovers that it is inappropriate for them to be telling me to stop doing something that is healthy for my child, and that I will not discuss it any further. I would draw the line there and absolutely not allow them to bring it up if they are going to be negative about it. Good for you for continuing this long.

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My dad asked me if I had any plans on weaning (just a casual conversation) shortly after my son turned one. I said 'no plans yet' and he hasn't mentioned it again... my son is almost 2.5 :)

My 2 best friends have encouraged me to wean, but they also realize that I'm only doing what I feel is best for my son.

My lawyer doesn't get it at all, but I think he's finally realized that whether he 'gets' it or not... he works FOR me and he is now trying to help protect my son's emotional well being.

Samantha - posted on 08/26/2010

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We nursed pretty much anywhere until 1 year then started to limit the activites to home or a more private place. I am still nursing my son 2.5 and my family certainly has the same sort of reaction that you are experiencing, that being said, once they are finished nursing it is over and that time is never returned, it is precious and very healthy.

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