Saturday, January 24, 2009

On Weaning

For the record, because not enough people talk about this stuff...

I nursed M & B until they were 28 months old. I had thought I'd try for a year, or maybe 18 months, but they really loved to nurse, and it was one of the few times when I could snuggle with both of them and just have a moment of relative peace and quiet. Except for the times they were busy hitting each other or putting their hands on the other kid's side. In the end, I had a business trip as a deadline - though as we were weaning I thought it was entirely possible that they'd make it through my trip and then go right back to nursing.

To wean, I tried cutting out feedings when I could - getting up in the morning and going straight to a cup of milk or breakfast at the table, for example. I also started limiting the time we nursed - agreeing to nurse for the count of 10, for example, or for just 2 minutes. Basically, I started putting limits on the nursing as a way to take back some control.

After we weaned, there were still a couple of times that B asked to nurse, and I was generally able to just offer him a cup of milk instead. One time after my business trip he was insistent, so I finally agreed to let him nurse "for the count of two". He got face to face with my boob, then... nothing. He seemed stumped about what to do next. I guess he forgot how. :) That's when I knew we were really truly done.

Now I need to go bra shopping!


  1. That's great they wanted to nurse for so long. Mine completely lost interest around 10 months. I kept offering until after they were a year old, but it became more and more obvious they were done.

  2. Thanks for writing about this. Sounds like it worked out well for the 3 of you. Mine are now 28 months. My son finally self-weaned fully some time since the holidays. After a couple of weeks of ambivalence he finally stopped asking. My daughter still really wants to. I have a business trip in April so I'll be gone 4 nights and I figure that will end it. I need to write an update on this, too! It's useful to read about others' experiences with extended nursing.

  3. Thanks for posting this. We reached the 2 year mark this month and are still going strong. We've got food allergies as a compounding factor, so there's no telling how long he'll need to nurse, but I do wonder sometimes how weaning will go. It's nice to hear from someone who's been there.

  4. We are down to nursing when we get up and nursing before tooth brushing at night. And we're at, what 30 months now? I think Daughter would wean if Son wasn't constantly reminding her. She tends to nurse for 20 seconds just to prove she still can then head off or pull off and snuggle.

  5. Oh wow, that is fantastic Cass. I would love to have nursed for as long as that.

  6. Yes, I remember when Elba convinced me to let her try again, and she'd forgotten the motion! She was 3.5 when she weaned.

    Enjoy the new bras -- it was a REVELATION to me. (Nordstrom, baby. The cost of even one bra is worth the pleasure of the perfect fit.)