need advice for weening...

[deleted account] ( 8 moms have responded )

My son was diagnosed with Leukemia when he was 18 months old. I was still nursing at the time and needless to say, there was no way i was going to ween him then!! however, he is now 2 1/2yrs old, and although he is still in treatment (and doing REALLY really well btw), he is now over the worst part and I think that it is finally time to ween. It is a complicated issue and a VERY emotional one for both of us but now that he finally has his appetite back I think it would be best for him to be eating calorie dense food and not his treasured "B". I'm a softy, and nursing him is so habitual now - i'm finding it hard to remember to stop! Also, he has never had a rigid feeding schedule so dropping one specific feed doesn't really work... I have begun to give him a sippy cup of milk to take to bed at night and it helps a bit for night feeds but it's not fool proof. Any tips or advice would be great!

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Gina - posted on 06/16/2011

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maybe if you want to ween him you can start pumping into a bottle and the gradually mix half breast milk and half regular...and give solids too

Nicole - posted on 06/15/2011

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I second all of the comments stating just how beneficial your milk is to his health and that it is very calorie-dense. I also second the "don't ask, don't refuse" technique should you still be inclined to wean.



I am still nursing my 20 month old and, although I knew I would breastfeed for at least 2 years, I am now realizing that we may still be nursing well beyond 2 due to his intolerance to dairy. I have always thought that breast milk was far superior to dairy/cow's milk for humans, but his intolerance puts that feeling into a whole new perspective. I don't mean to compare dairy intolerance with Leukemia, I was just pointing out that sometimes health issues can make us do things for our children that we'd never thought we'd do and as long as no one is judging us, we don't care.



Way to go at being such an awesome mom, being such an awesome mom to a baby with cancer and being such an awesome nursing mom!!! You have done so good so far, I think whatever you decide to do, you will do it right. ;o)

Dee - posted on 06/15/2011

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It is never easy being a Mom with a child with medical issues, my heart and prayers go out to you both. My son is 2 years 8 months still BF and has a condition called Mastocytosis. His condition is not as debilitating as Leukemia but I attribute BF (and God) for why my son has not had some of the complications as other cases I have read/know about. He has had no ER visit's due to a food allergy (a major reason in Mastocytosis cases) and I believe it is because he is never given anything that he hasn't already had via my milk. I too am a softy and unfortunately, it also means I am that way towards other people's opinions. Somehow, I forgot the BF benefits and was caving to the pressures/comments from others and decided to ween him. It was confusing/heartbreaking for both of us. I had done my homework, read all the articles and how to's before I started, but it did not go so good for me. Then almost immediately after I started he got pretty ill and all he would eat or could stomach was breast milk. This reminded me (more like smacked me in the head) that all I really should care about is what is best for my son. If he wants it now, I make a way for it to happen. He is my last (and softy or not), I know it is a whole lot better for him than anything a cow or plant can give him. When he decides it's time to end it, then I am following his lead. I know that I am not being of help towards your questions, but I just wanted you to know, it is ok to be a softy! I am proudly one too!

Noreen - posted on 06/15/2011

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I can understand the want to wean at 2.5yrs old. I have been nursing for almost 21 months and there are days where I am so done, and other days when I love it.

However. Did you know that breastmilk is extremly helpful in curing cancer?? That some adults who are diagnosed with cancer who get breastmilk from milk banks to help them with their cancer. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/201...

Another thing to add, he could be doing VERY well with his Leukemia treatment because he has that extra boost from breastmilk.

Either way, you have done a WONDERFUL job nursing your son for 2.5 yrs and he has had a great start to life! If you still wish to wean your son, there is no judgement from me. :) Good luck!! Your son is in my thoughts and prayers as far as his treatment goes.

Minnie - posted on 06/14/2011

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Awww, I'm sorry you and your son have had to go through that! Such a rough time. Congratulations on nursing him that long!



Do you want to continue nursing him? Your milk is still very nutritional, and actually is quite calorie-dense. In addition to that, it provides your son with concentrated immune and growth factors, things that are very important considering his medical history.



If you're looking into a gradual method the 'don't ask, don't refuse' works well. It takes some time, but is sensitive to your son's emotional and health needs and your own health needs.

[deleted account]

I like to slowly reduce the amount they get per feeding. Then offer other food and drink options.

Merry - posted on 06/14/2011

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Well first off I'm so sorry he has to go through this medical struggle! I'm glad he's doing better now, but I do have to say one thing, breastmilk is one of the most calorie dense food you can give him!
The general rule is not to wean until one of the pair wants to. Sounds like you don't really want to, and he definitely doesn't want to stop. Why do you think he should?
Is it just because you don't think your milk is too beneficial to him now?
Because it is!
I don't have any weaning tips because I'm tandem feeding my one month o,d along with my two year old, and I plan on not doing anything to make them wean, just waiting :)
But why do you think now is the time? Are you open to continuing longer?
He's really not too old, there's lots of ladies on here nursing three year olds and four year olds. And especially with his leukemia my personal feeling is that he would benefit so much from your milk.
:)

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