I need some advice. My daughter is 23 mos old and still nursing. I want to start to wean and I don't think i'm ready to wean completely, but when I refuse to nurse her she throws a big fit and sometimes she'll even hit me or pull my hair (at which point I don't give in) but it is becoming a problem. I've been trying to limit her feedings, but when we're at home she wants to nurse all day. Sometimes she can be distracted, but it's very difficult. I'd appeciate any sort of advice. Thanks!!!
Congrats on almost making it to two years! You sound like you are at a crossroads. It is good to remember nursing doesn't have to be all or nothing, and many moms continue to nurse past two years with the addition of a few more "requirements," to keep things going smoothly for mom and baby -- remember, both mom and baby should be happy with the situation, and if they aren't, things need to be adjusted.
Many moms find when they stay home their child wants to nurse non-stop. Often when they plan outings, or are busy away from home, the child hardly even remembers about nursing. It can be helpful to plan a few days a week where you are both engaged in something "different" than just being home in your normal environment.
Of course you can't run away from home, lol, so with a few "requirements" often moms find the relationship can be altered a bit. Some moms find if they routinely require the child do something before nursing, like eat some food, drink some water, etc., it can help to know if the child is hungry or thirsty and wanting to nurse because of that, or if a child is sleepy, wants to connect with mom, wants to cuddle.
It is important to remember that a weaned child's needs won't just change overnight to becoming an independent little being who no longer needs to snuggle, hug, touch, etc., his or her mama; instead, moms have to find other ways to meet these needs while not incorporating breastfeeding any longer.
You absolutely do not have to put up with the physical punishment your child is giving you, though. It sounds like that could be out of frustration on your child's part, but she needs to know it is not okay to hit. Some mothers handle biting like this, I wonder if it would work in your situation? If she hits you, you set her down, stick to one phrase, not a lot of words, and always say the same thing when it happens: You don't hit Mommy. Then walk away for a minute to show her you aren't going to sit and watch her be upset, that you have other things you can be doing (like empty the dishwasher, change the laundry, etc.). If the need to nurse is still there, and she has calmed, you can try again; if she has moved onto something else (playing or distracted), then you just forget about that nursing session. Of course like biting, the best thing is to catch this in advance.
I would encourage you to get ahold of "The Nursing Mother's Guide to Weaning," or "Mothering Your Nursing Toddler." I am sure they would both have great information for you.