Still breastfeeding at 21 months! Anyone else doing the same?

Christina - posted on 02/26/2011 ( 52 moms have responded )

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I am still breast feeding my son whom just turned 21 months. He has previously been having breast and formula from the age of 6 months to about 11 months and then we realised that the formula was giving him reflux - so it became boob all the way. So we are now 21 months and I have realised that he is very healthy and hasn't had half as many of the 'bugs' that other kids his age have had in the past year. So I am grateful. But find that people look at me funny because I am still feeding. And also people around me comment "So, when are you going to stop feeding him?'. I really want to say - None of your Business!! Anyone still feeding? Or know of an appropriate response? Thanks!

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Kendra - posted on 02/28/2011

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My son will be 2 in a couple weeks, and we are still going strong! Good for you for doing what works for you and baby :-)

Christina - posted on 02/27/2011

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Ladies, I am overwhelmed at the wonderful responses from you all! Thank you! You have given me the confidence to say - 'I will stop when either of us want to'! I know that his immune system has benefitted from this extra long feeding. He is a well adjusted, strong wee man who loves breastfeeding and so do I. Plus he was 9 weeks early - so I am thankful to have him AND thankfult o have your comments, support & wonderful stories. THANK YOU!!

Phelicia - posted on 03/05/2011

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I breastfed my youngest daughter through 27 months. :) That's right, we made it past 2! The only reason I weaned her was because I am pregnant again, and it was really hurting me. It is great for them to continue to nurse, and the Pediatricians suggest we nurse until at Least the age of 2. It really isn't anyone's business how long you nurse. I just used to tell people I don't spend my time wondering when I will stop. When one of the two of us is ready, I will. Weaning a 2 year old is super easy too. I was able to just tell her it was hurting mommy, and we weren't doing it any more. She was sad for a couple of days, but got over it quickly because she was big enough to understand why. :) By the way, I know people who have nursed well into the age of 3. Check in with your local Le Leche League, and I am sure you will find a few ladies who are still nursing past the age of two!

Merry - posted on 03/05/2011

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6. Studies have shown that a child's immune system doesn't completely mature until about 6 years of age, and it is well established that breast milk helps develop the immune system and augment it with maternal antibodies as long as breast milk is produced (up to two years, no studies have been done on breast milk composition after two years post partum).

Taken from http://www.kathydettwyler.org/detwean.ht...

Lisa - posted on 03/05/2011

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"when he's good and ready" "when we feel like it" etc. or like you said "nonya" none of ya business!
I nursed three babies until they were two years old each. And I am currently nursing my 14 month old, he won't be weaned until he's two also. If a person is respectful in their question, as in they really want to know the answer, I tell them truthfully that a baby's immune system isn't fully developed until they are two years old, so I want to make sure that my baby is getting all the immune support he needs. I also believe it promotes a bond between a baby and mother and I love it. Who wants to deny a baby their comfort? My poor lil bub will turn his head sideways and cry when he's wanting to nurse. He also laughs funny when i asked him "baby want to nurse?"
it's a calming time for us, just the two of us, nobody else matters. I think it gives a baby a time out, to recoup from all the activity.
nurse for however long you like, because its your right and privilege to nurse your baby.

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Floridagirl2512 - posted on 11/23/2013

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I'm still breastfeeding and my DS is 21 months but he is so demanding an that's why he still nurses.. I want so bad to be done with it though , I have 3 other children and don't have the time to stop 8 times a day to sit with him while he comfort nurses :(. He also pinches my other nipple while nursing and it hurts so bad lol.. Idk If he will ever stop he really is a demanding child... But more power to you do not listen to those around you only you know what is right for you and your child!!!

Merry - posted on 05/17/2011

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My son is 2 years and two months old, he nurses 7-8 times a day and once in the night. I'm also breastfeeding my one week old daughter!
You aren't alone, and he is VERY lucky to still be breastfeeding!

Leanne - posted on 05/17/2011

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Im still feeding my daughter she is almost 23 months now, She has cut back to just a night time feed for now. Although I dont think it will be long before the night time feeds stop either (her own doing). She is reaching her for her water before going for breast now. Where before it was only breast. Try and give her water and she would take it and throw it as hard as she could. I dont think its anyone else's business how long you feed for.

Nichole - posted on 03/07/2011

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You go girl!! I breastfed my son until he turned 2 yrs old. Your son will let you know when he is ready to wean. They kinda taper off all on their. Just keep going until YOU feel it's the right time and don't let anyone else convince you differently.
Children do still receive significant health benefits from breastfeeding no matter the age. Most say they don't after 1 yr but new research has proven otherwise.
Just tell people you'll stop when he's ready and leave it at that.

Sharon - posted on 03/07/2011

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Currently still feeding my almost 22 month old with no sign of stopping. :)

CAMMY - posted on 03/06/2011

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I have breast feeding for my elder girl for 40 months & now my little girl for 10 months

Chia Yen - posted on 03/06/2011

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really i think "none of your business" is appropriate.....say it with a smile perhaps ! my friend is bf and her kid is 3 going on to 4. I think the fact that he is healthy and hasn't have half as many bugs is worthwhile all the unpleasant comments you might have to face. Keep it up !

Katrina - posted on 03/06/2011

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I breastfed my son until just after his 4th birthday. He chose to quit - I didn't mind :) I would just tell people who asked that we would stop when he was ready and it would be the right time - and it was.

Dana - posted on 03/06/2011

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My daughter is 24 months and I am still breastfeeding her. She has been sick way less often than other children. 2 weeks before her 2nd birthday I started to explain to her that when she turns 2 that she'll be drinking her milk from a cup like other friends and cousins. It's working well. The first day was a little hard but she understood. She went from nursing 4 times a day to just once before bed. Everytime she asks for momma's milk I ask her if she wants milk in a cup and she says yes and there's little or absolutely no fuss.
I've told people that she has weaned herself considerably over time and that's the approach we chose to take. I also mentioned that we were following our midwife's advice to nurse until 2 years and the WHO's advice as well. Breast cancer runs in my immediate family and it apparently reduces my risk as well by nursing.
She is getting her molars and when she doesnt feel like eating and chewing, has a fever or needs comfort I am thankful I can offer some nourishment/fluids and comfort by nursing her. Stop when you are ready and dont feel the need to explain to anyone. Good luck!

Emily - posted on 03/06/2011

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I breastfed my son until he was 2 years 8 months. Just about everyone I knew questioned on a regular basis when I was going to stop. But I am a believer in extended breastfeeding & plan to do the same with my daughter who is now 9 months. As long as YOU are comfortable with breastfeeding & your son continues to show interest, do it! Forget what others say & do what is best for the two of you!

[deleted account]

You're not alone at all. I am still nursing my 27 mo old right along with my 6 mo old. She was always small and I figured she could use the extra calories. Plus it gives us time together one on one. Through my pregnancy people told me to quit all the time. Frankly it got annoying. She's healthy, I'm healthy, the baby is healthy and happy too. I don't understand why people get so hung up on what I'm giving to my kids. when I see other kids walking around with bottles of koolaid and soda?

Deborah - posted on 03/05/2011

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Fed my youngest till she was 2 and a half ish had the odd comment but just said if she wants it she can have it that usually shut them up.Must say she has always been my best eater.

A - posted on 03/05/2011

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I"m still nursing my 21 month old and I'm pregnant with number two. There have been some people who have made comments to me or my husband. I tell them the benefits and leave it at that. I've come to accept that some people aren't WILLING to accept the truth. My sister has made comments to me and I've told her the benefits and she was like "okay" but still doesn't completely get it, but isn't pushy or mean about it. There's another person on my husbands side of the family that has made comments to him (and me, but usually makes more comments when I'm not around to defend myself). I've decided if she makes another comment to me, I'm going to give her a big binder of research I've printed off and tell her to read it. Hopefully that will shut her up. Needless to say all the people that have had a problem with it have bottle fed at some point. I think *sometimes* women want to defend what they have done so they don't feel guilty or like they have done something wrong. Others are just simply clueless since our society is so down on BFing. Since so many people FF and bottles aren't supposed to be used after a year because of orthodontic problems and such, they don't understand that the natural way doesn't cause that and the natural way doesn't need to be stopped at a young age. Don't let others discourage you. You know what you're doing is right and that's what matters. Its hard when you have no one supporting you. But you can do it. You're not the only one out there that has to deal with this :)

Phelicia - posted on 03/05/2011

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I haven't tandum nursed but I did have the same issue with my 2 year old nursing and not eating. (Incidentally, I have the same problem when she drinks lots of cow's milk) I started nursing her only in the morning and evening, and gave her water before and during meals so that she can eat. Truth is that if she is gaining weight at the right level she is likely fine, but if you are really worried, that is what I would do. The mother's milk is probably more nutritious than anything on her plate.

Emily - posted on 03/05/2011

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I nursed two of my daughters for over 2 1/2 years. We loved it. :) I'm currently nursing my 18 month old twins, and will continue until at least their second birthday, but probably beyond as well. :)

Aleks - posted on 03/05/2011

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24 months here and still going very strong! No sight of stopping... I am not getting the questions re "when are you going to wean?" but I do get comments like: "when we get her off the boob, we will/we can...etc" from my fiance (her dad). And others frequently say that "oh, you can wean her, there are special formulas out there and if you get a prescription from the doctor then they don't cost so much" where they refer to my comments of how this is THE ONLY true milk she can have since she is dairy and soy intollerant (yes, we use rice and oat milk, however, these are not complete milks for children to use as a substitute). And no, I am not going to buy bloody junk food in a tin for her just so I can get her off the boob. While I know these people have good intentions "for me" but fail to truelly appreciate MY good intentions for my daughter - which are sooooo much more important :-)
You are doing a great job! Don't get discouraged. It can be tough when you feel like you are the only one, but know that you are not! :-)

Nicole - posted on 03/05/2011

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You are definitely not alone. My son is 2 weeks away from his second birthday and he is still nursing many times a day and night. I nursed my daughter until she was 2 years 9 months, including through my pregnancy with my son & tandem nursed them for 11 months. If people ask about when he'll wean, my favorite answer is "some time before he leaves for college." :)

Sarah - posted on 03/05/2011

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my first nursed 3.5 years. My second 2.5. I'll nurse #3 until she's ready to self-wean.
If people ask, tell them that the WHO and Unicef recommend AT LEAST 2 years and no limit.

Christine - posted on 03/05/2011

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BTW- a response I always use was: "When he wants to stop" or "when God feels it is the right time" I would defer to a higher power or an affordable boy.

Christine - posted on 03/05/2011

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My son was weaned at 27 months. I had been trying to wean him since age 1 year but he always resisted. Up to the time he was weaned he was a healthy boy. Since then he started daycare and gets sick every week. I believe that he picks up stuff from the daycare but on the other hand the milk offered a layer of protection. Anyway, I am dealing with it. I weaned him because I got sick and was taking meds I could not breastfeed him on. It was hard for him to wean but we did it and honestly I feel liberated. Last week I went to get bras and I feel good. He is also more independent and it is great to see him self soothe. It was the hardest thing for us to do but we are getting better everyday.
In the end you have to do what you are both comfortable with. Let the reason you wean be because you or your child want to not because of what others tell you or show you. Good Luck!

Merry - posted on 03/05/2011

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Eric is 23 months and still bf about 8 times a day. He doesn't get much now cuz I'm due to have a baby in 8 weeks! But he is happy to enjoy the colostrum, and the snuggled we share while bf. I will not impose weaning on him at any time, so I'm assuming he will be at least 3 if not 4 or 5 before he is done. And the same goes for Fierna when she is born, no limits! Wondering how it might be if I conceive the third while both are still bf.....anyone bf three different aged siblings? Could be a fun adventure!
No one has bothered me about continuing much, or maybe I just effectively divided comments by saying stuff like 'I say no to all the bad stuff so much, why say no to something healthy?' or I say 'two years is the minimum recommendation these days' with being pregnant I just said 'it's not a health concern to keep going' and when asked now what the heck I'll do when Fierna is born I say 'I've got two boobs right? No big deal!'
'we don't feel it's time' works well too.

Rebecca - posted on 03/05/2011

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I'm not going to still be breastfeeding at 21 mths but my son is 18 mths. He seems to get sick more then any of the other kids and his never had formula. It's been breast all the way

Tamie - posted on 03/05/2011

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im still feeding my 19 mth old son not going to stop in the near future either sod wat others think

Anna Marie - posted on 03/05/2011

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If your toddler is happy and appears healthy, you don't have anything to worry about. Many kids sense when they have sensitivities to foods and avoid them, so perhaps your toddler does not like the way solid foods make her feel. Or, it could just be that your milk is all they need right now. These things do go in waves, and you cannot hurt your toddler by continuing to offer them substance from your breast even if they aren't eating solids. Ignore others that give you grief. They may not know enough about it, or they may feel a little jealous that they were not able to be successful in a similar situation. Your family and your issues are for you to figure out. Definitely get advice from those that have been there rather than those that just want to advise!!

Heather - posted on 03/05/2011

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Josie, Kids are awsome self regulators. They will eat what they need to when they need to. I nursed my 1st son till he was 31 mos old and untill he stopped nursing i was lucky to get 15 bites a day into him. Also he was 20lbs by 5mo old and 25lbs by 8 mos old and still 25 lbs at 2yrs old. He kept getting taller but never gained weight. I got all sorts of greif from relatives about this especially since he only nursed at night so was going all day every day for over a year drinking his water and eating about 15 bites of food a day. I was not nervous becasue he was active and attentive and a normal toddler. When he stopped nursing at 31 mos old everything stayed about the same for about a week then all of a sudden he was 2x as much as i eat every day. This continued (and is still that way now that he is 7 yrs old) but by the time he was 3 he was only 27lbs so really did not gain mych weight dispite the fact that he was my little piggy. NOw he is almost 8 and still a great eater, still very active and smart and attentive and still in the 30% for weight even tho he is in the 95th for height. Please don't worry your kid is doing great i am sure!!!! And even tho you are tandem nursing (which i did not do becasue i got preg with #2 3 mos after #1 weened but #2 is now almost 4 and still nursing a little bit). IF your kids seem like they are doing well then i am sure they are. If nursing is working for you and them then it is working and does not need to be stopped. You do what feels right to you and that is the right decision for your family. Stay strong adn congrats on being an awsome momma who does what is in the best interst of her kids dispite pressures from external sources.

JOSIE - posted on 03/05/2011

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I am still breastfeeding my toddler who will be 3 yr old in May. I am also breastfeeding my 2 year old. My concern is that my toddler likes to breastfeed so much now that there is so much milk that she doesn't eat enough solid foods. Is this okay? My doctor and public health nurse and family members (in-laws mostly) keep telling me to stop. What should I do? Is it bad that she doesn't eat enough solids. she often skips meals now. Anyone have any advice or experience with this...especially other tandem breastfeeding mom's

Leia - posted on 03/01/2011

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My daughter is 1year and 3 months and still FULL breastfeeding until now. Thumbs up to those breastfeeding moms because our kids are healthy and intelligent. I have this friend that she's still breastfeeding her 3 year old son.. and its such a good thing.. so don't worry about it.. it'll be fine..

Anna Marie - posted on 02/28/2011

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Good for you! My oldest is 4 and hasn't nursed in about a week...He still latches on a couple times a week usually, especially when he is sick, I try to encourage it to get the antibodies into him. You are definitely not alone. I've found that people don't even ask for the most part now, they assume we are done! When I did get questions earlier in our relationship, I simply said, "This works for us." and laughed it off. I can only hope that my younger (who is 15 months) will nurse as long. I've truly enjoyed this extended nursing, and it has been great when he's sick! My husband always encourages extra feedings when he's sick, so I know he's a fan, too! Keep up the good work, and trust your gut to know what works for you and your family :)

Aicha - posted on 02/28/2011

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I am currently breastfeeding my daughter she is 17 months old I am also breastfeeding her brother he is 5 weeks old . Keep up the good work mothers

Amy - posted on 02/28/2011

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yes! mine is 23 months tomorrow. I want to stop but he is so cute when he wants to nurse, I dont want him to be nursing and 5

Katrina - posted on 02/28/2011

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Good for you!
My daughter will be 21 months in a few days and she's still nursing. My first nursed until he was 3,through my pregnancy with my second and I tandem nursed for 2 months. My second nursed until he was almost 5. I don't plan on making my third wean any time soon, same as her brothers.
When people ask that nasty question of "are you still nursing" or "when are you going to stop" I simply answer yes we are still nursing and we'll stop when we stop and then won't converse about it any more when I can. When someone insists on keeping the conversation going I make a point of telling them that World Health Organization recommends until at least the age of 2, longer if mama and baby desire it. The American Academy of Pediatrics is behind the times in only recommending a year. In cultures where child led weaning is the norm it is not unusual for a child to nurse in upwards of 7 years. Our culture is wrong and misguided in it's attitude towards breastfeeding and appropriate weaning.
In reality it's none of their business if you are nursing your child or not. They are the ones being rude and there is no real reason to care or appease them.
I am known for giving the biggest warm smile to those that I catch eyes with when I'm nursing and look around. Either I get a friendly smile back or I put them off guard and they look away uncomfortable LOL It is very rare that someone confronts me :)

Ju - posted on 02/28/2011

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I give people who asks, "It was a bit of a challenge for me to establish the nursing with him and I am totally grateful to have been able to do this till now and hope to do whatever it takes to ensure he grows healthy." Most will then stop asking.

Mary - posted on 02/28/2011

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I'm still breast feeding my 29 month old.
I also nurse my 10 month old but no one asks about her yet.
I always try to let them know that the WHO recommends BF for at least 2 years and that the international average weaning age is 4 years old.

Gwen - posted on 02/27/2011

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My daughter is 26 months and still breastfeeding. I really would like to stop. She really would not. I just ignore the comments from others - all well meaning, but this is kind of between my daughter and I, my husband is good with either way. Not sure if that's helpful, but I'm still going strong.

[deleted account]

Ist daughter - 2 yrs+
2nd daughter - 2 1/2 yrs (tandem fed with 3rd daughter for a while)
3rd daughter - 4yrs+

Very radical at the time - first daughter is now 30!

Minnie - posted on 02/27/2011

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We're at 28 1/2 months. Still enjoying it!

When people ask when I'm going to stop nursing I nicely tell them when we are ready. It helps to be confident and honest- and nice about it- and I find that many are genuinely interested.

[deleted account]

Oh, and as much as I'd love to spread the word on the benefits of toddler nursing - if you want to shut people up, that's not the way to go about it. Particularly when it comes to women who decided to wean earlier. For some reason their defenses go up straight away and you find yourself in the middle of an argument. Better avoided if you want a peaceful life...

[deleted account]

18 months and no notion of stopping any time soon. I am actually getting less remarks as time goes by, I think people are just getting used to it now. When people ask, I just tell them that nursing just works really well for us so I don't see any reason to stop. I do sometimes get uncomfortable about it , depending on who's around, but I try not to show it. Confidence seems to make others more comfortable and less likely to question you.

Heather - posted on 02/27/2011

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I nursed my #1 till 31 months and my #2 is 46 months and almost weened (he nurses for about 1-2 mins about 5 times a week. I am almost all dried up but still have a little left). I think that you should nurse as long as you both want to. It is still healthy and you are not only decreasing his risk of diseases such as diabeties and cancer and cardiovascular disease but also keeping his immune system up and lowering his chance of obesity. Also for everyone month of your life that you nurse a child you lower your risk of breast and uterine cancer more. The WHO says to nurse exclusively for a min of 6 mos, nurse for a min of 12-24 mos or longer if mutually benificial. Most societies nurse their kids for 2-7 years...the US is in the minority in terms of that. You are oding great. Keep up the good work. (one of my friends when asked when she was gonna ween her sons she would tell people "when his wife tells me i can't nurse him anymore then i will stop" and all the of her kids weened before age 3.) Good luck and keep up the great work

Sandie - posted on 02/27/2011

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hiya, my little boy is 21months also, we're still going strong. i get odd looks when people find out im still breastfeeding but no one has come out and asked when im stopping...most people were shocked that i let him breastfeed with so many teeth, they think im a little crazy and a lot braver than them! haha. i only feed him at home now because he is not at all discreet, but i like to tell people im breastfeeding to try and make it seem a little more normal and hopefully inspire a few more ladies to do the same. well done you!!

[deleted account]

You are not alone! I am currently nursing my 2 almost 3 month old and my 2 1/2 year old. I don't generally nurse my oldest in public only because he doesn't usually ask for it. My family has slowed down on the When are you going to wean him business since the birth of my youngest. I nursed my first child until I was 7 months pregnant and only weaned because she wasn't happy with the low milk supply. She was 17 months and I had really hoped she would jump back on when my 2nd was born, but she wasn't interested. I nursed my 2nd child throughout the entire 3rd pregnancy and even though there was no milk for about half of it, he didn't seem to mind at all. I really thought he would stop once there was actual milk coming out again, but to my surprise (happily) he wanted to nurse just as often as the newborn! Now he is down too 4-5 times a day. I think the best response I used and still do is well we will stop when he is done! I was so irritated with my parents one day that I blurted out 'I guess if he is wanting to suck on his girlfriends and still stuck on mine we will talk about weaning! I think that got my point across that I was willing to nurse until my child was ready to wean LOL It was not however received well by my conservative parents! The other answer I usually use is well humans stop making the enzyme needed to digest milk around 7 or 8 so I'm waiting to see if it's true! Good luck to you and congrats on nurturing your child!

[deleted account]

I think that "none of your business" is an appropriate response lol. I know the looks peope give you when they hear a toddler is still nursing. My daughter is 22 months and I'm 20 weeks pregnant. So they think I'm nuts and can't understand how that's possible or safe. I usually take the opportunity to educate them and I tell them how supportive my doctor is of me continuing to nurse. I recently joined La Leche League and that's the only place I've met moms (except for on the internet) that are also breastfeeding toddlers/children or are tandem nursing. It's nice to be able to talk to people about it who don't think I'm crazy.

Dinorah - posted on 02/26/2011

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You're not alone. I'm still breastfeeding my 3 years old and breastfeeded almost 4 years my oldest son. People sometimes will look at you weird and someothers will encourage you to keep nursing your kid cause they know all the benefits of breastfeeding. Personally I know lots of moms who keep nursing their kids until they reach 5.

[deleted account]

My son will be 3 in one month and one day and still nurses 2-5 times/day, so you are certainly NOT alone.



The fact that I'm still nursing him really doesn't come up w/ anyone. A couple of people were a little surprised that I continued nursing him after he was gone for a week w/ his father (end of December), but the only reason I was going to impose weaning on him was to try and make the visitation easier on him. I have a feeling if he doesn't wean before when he is w/ his father for 4 weeks this summer there won't be any milk to come home to. I HAVE a pump that I bought specifically for that reason, but I'm not too hopeful that I'll be able to keep things going for him.

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