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Thread: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

  1. #1

    Default Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    Hello all,
    Just need some support. I'm still breastfeeding my 2 1/2 year old daughter and there seem to be no end in sight. I have enjoyed it and felt it was the best thing to do, but now my boobs are starting to hurt, mostly from her squeezing them, and I feel like there's not much left. I'm really starting to wonder if I did this all wrong. She has always nursed a lot, almost every hour, day and night...she still does if we're at home a whole day. I have recently successfully weaned her at night (between 11pm-6am that is), using Dr. Jay Gordons advice.

    She has been sick a lot this past winter, almost every other week, and does not eat very well. She doesn't like a lot of foods, and she doesn't like to feed herself. As a result of this she has anemia, and who knows maybe some other vitamin or mineral deficiency. I'm really worried, as I've seen that her hair has started to thin out in certain areas.

    It's so hard for me to deal with this eating situation...she really doesn't want to eat much at all. All she eats is yogurt, beans, sunflower seeds, nuts and bananas...seriously...no meat, no veggies or other fruit. I offer other foods, but she doesn't want it. She doesn't want to sit down at the table, and just grazes throughout the day. On top of it she has a terrible temper, and will scream her lungs off, and throw herself on the floor if she doesn't get her way.

    I thought I was doing the best thing for my child by breastfeeding her so much, but i'm starting to doubt it now...maybe if I would have introduced foods sooner and developed more of a schedule she would now sit down and eat like other kids her age.

    I am also worried she has developmental delays, because her motor skills are not good, for example she can't dress herself, and she doesn't run...she just walks very fast. She also doesn't seem to understand when I try to explain how to do certain things, and she gets super frustrated when she can't do something.

    Going to the doc this wednesday, and I know they are not going to like the breastfeeding. I've already had one doc blame me, ask me how the anemia happened, saying that my daughter doesn't exactly shop for food herself.

    I feel like a bad mother and I'm so worried I've done things so wrong. I don't know if I should keep breastfeeding, or if I should stop, and hope that she will eat more. It will be hell though, and she will go crazy.

    Also last but not least, going trough a difficult time in my personal life...have been forced to be separated from my partner, my daughters dad for about a year, and now he has told me he doesn't want to be with me any more. I'm sure she feels this too.

    Sorry for the long and rambling post...just need some support.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    First off lots of Sounds like you are going through a very difficult time in your life. I think that our LOs pick up on our stress and up heaval in our lives much more than we think they do. That plus nursing from boredom is probably why your LO is nursing so much. Also just becuase you give up nursing doesn't mean that your daughter is going to eat any better. Have you tried giving any sort of suppliments or vitamins? that may help to fill in some gaps in your daughter's nutirition. Have you kept a diary of exactly what she is eating over a week or two? Don't let the doctor tell you that you have done something wrong by continueing to nurse your LO. It is very natural and normal for her to nurse for this long and it sounds like she needs the comfort and security it provides.
    Jessica

    Moma to DS1-the monkinroanie (3/09) and DS2-the sweet pumpkin (5/12)
    Strong Women- May we have the delight of knowing them, the courage to be them and the privilege of raising them.
    And yes I know my spelling terrible (is that spelled right? )

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    "I am also worried she has developmental delays, because her motor skills are not good, for example she can't dress herself, and she doesn't run...she just walks very fast. She also doesn't seem to understand when I try to explain how to do certain things, and she gets super frustrated when she can't do something."

    Kids from seperated parents tend to be a bit slower. My bonus girl has her delays. She's almost five and isn't potty trained. She doesn't dress herself very well and is socailly akward. That being said she is an amazing kid in other ways.


    Hang in there! Breastmilk is brain food. If she's slower now, I'm sure she'll catch up later!
    July 30, 2010-6lbs 2oz- 41w 4d (emergency c-section.) Known dairy, eggs, dogs and cats allergies, eczema, and asthma
    Bonus June 22, 2006 (is 50/50 Custody ) (born 32w) Sensitive to changing temps.
    We BF, BW, Co-sleep and use cloth diapers/pull-ups!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    with the PPs. I don't think that removing breastmilk from a child's diet is a magic cure for issues with solids. All you're doing is taking away the one source of complete nutrition that your LO is guaranteed to want to eat! I'd definitely start her on multivitamins, though, and work on her solid food diet. You can't make your kid eat a perfect diet, but you can continue to model good eating habits and to offer a variety of healthy solids at each meal. Then, when the doc is getting up in your face, you can honestly say "I am working on it. I offer her the following food groups at every meal... Maybe you can give me some pointers on how to tempt a reluctant kid to eat." That might be enough to short-circuit the criticism, and allow you to move on to discussing the other areas you're concerned about.

    Oh- and at age 2.5 my kid ate pretty much exclusively pasta with red sauce, plus the very occasional veggie. No fruit. No dairy other than breastmilk. So your kid's diet doesn't sound bad to me!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    I think you've gotten some great advice so far! I would also encourage you not to blame any of her difficulties on you breastfeeding her. I would imagine that the nursing is a really stabilizing factor for her, both emotionally and nutritionally.

    Has she had any recent bloodwork done? You mentioned anemia, but I wonder about zinc levels. For a lot of kids with decreased appetite or pickiness issues, adding in a zinc supplement can bring their appetites back very quickly. Additionally, zinc deficiency can manifest as hair loss, poor immune function, and cognitive/emotional trouble. Will the doctors be doing any additional bloodwork this week? This would be worth checking into.

    What direction would you like your breastfeeding to take? Are you ready to start tapering off, or looking for ways to make it more comfortable to keep going?

    Hang in there, mama.
    Teal

    25 May 96 and 14 January 08 and 27 February 2012

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    Hang in there and agreed that many toddlers are picky. MY DS who I pumped for 11 months due to his cleft lip and palate, was a SUPER picky toddler and stil is at 5.5yo. At 2.5 he ate stage 2 baby foods(mixed cereals with fruits), yogurt, pudding, pretzels, crackers...and thats basically IT!!! He is better eater now but still limited and picky.

    If you are worried about developmental delays, you can initiate testing on your LO, and myabe she will qualify for services. They even have feeding therapy for kids, look into it!!!

    good luck and dont beat yourself up. I agree with other posters, you might give up nursing and still have a super picky kid who has a limited diet and dosent nurse....
    Mommy of 4,
    3 who I watch over, 1 who watches over all of us

    J- 8/20/05 pumped breastmilk for 11 months due to his cleft lip and palate!

    M- 10/17/07 my precious baby lives forever in her mommys heart

    M- 3/31/09 my special gift, she helps heal her mommy and daddys heart. Nursed for 4 years and 10 days, self weaned the day her baby brother was born!

    E-, new little miracle born 4/11/13, my BIG baby! Born 8.6 at 38 weeks. At 9 weeks nearly 17lbs, at 12 weeks nearly 20lbs, at 6 months nearly 23lbs, at 8 months nearly 25lbs and all from BREASTMILK


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*codepink View Post
    her motor skills are not good, for example she can't dress herself, and she doesn't run...she just walks very fast. She also doesn't seem to understand when I try to explain how to do certain things, and she gets super frustrated when she can't do something."
    aw, mama.. sounds like a rough time indeed..

    okay, i wanted to first point out that these things are no indication of poor motor skills IMO. i don't know a lot of 2 and a half yr olds who can fully dress themselves. maybe pull up some pants/shorts/undies, and put shoes on, or at least attempt to.. and running.. well, if she's walking fast then i wouldn't really worry. and getting frsutrated/not understanding what you're saying.. MAN. that's CLASSIC normal toddler behavior, mama! i don't mean to quickly dismiss your concerns as being invalid, and definitely get some second opinions w/ pedis... but it doesn't sound like she's behind or off at all IMO.

    that having been said, i would not continue to see a pedi that was unsupportive with my decision to do extended bf'ing. it indicates a certain lack of education and tolerance that i would not readily accept as a quality in the doctor caring for my little one.

    just my initial thoughts.. hang in there.
    the best food blog you aren't reading

    i'm beth, mama to:

    lila, 11/6/08, nursed until 2yrs 10 mos, weaned during pregnancy

    -and-

    max, 2/16/12, my huge new little nursling

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    You mentioned she's been sick a lot this winter, which could explain her lack of appetite for solids. Combined with any stress she might be picking up at home due to your separation with your partner, it's not surprising she is comfort-nursing so much. It's probably what she needs most right now and I think you've been doing a great job for your daughter.

    Also, in my opinion, aren't most two-year-olds picky eaters ? I know lots of formula-fed kids who aren't the least interested in food and I also know breast-fed kids who love eating.

    Don't let your doctor make you feel bad about yourself or doubt your mothering instincts!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post

    Great advice from previous posters. Also, Dr. Sears has a fantastic resource on his site- tips for picky eaters, that you could check out here: http://www.askdrsears.com/html/3/T030800.asp

    He talks about how it's perfectly normal for toddlers to binge on one food, and offers lots of advice to help out (like a nibble tray for toddlers who refuse to sit and eat a regular meal). And aim for a healthy balanced week, not day. Lots of good info there, so have a look if you have time.

    Good luck!
    First time mom to Rob, born 5/4/10.

    I thought I was a breastfeeding advocate before I had a baby.... now I've realized I'm a breastfeeding nut! A supporter, defender, shout-it-from-the-rooftop crazy lady!

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Need support -breastfeeding 2 1/2 yr old - long rambling post



    My son is getting picky with his food and he just turned 1. I'm constantly trying to find food that i know he'll eat. I agree with PP. Definitely get her supplements. My nephew is about her age and is on PediaSure because of his weight/nutrition issues. Maybe that could work for your DD.

    I don't agree that Breastfeeding would cause any issues or taking it away will fix it.
    Jennifer (30) DH (38)
    DD 10/9/07 Abigail for 15 months and survived 6mos of at work.
    DS Ethan 5/14/10 for almost 15mos and at school(teacher) and entire school year...10 months.
    Taking a break from until my next baby...TBA.

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