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Thread: Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

  1. #1

    Unhappy Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

    My 11 month old son stopped nursing all of a sudden. He bit me whenever I offered for a day and then started pushing me away. It's been five days and I have tried every thing hoping that this was a strike. But seems like he has self weaned. I am pumping now and he happily takes the milk from a sippy, so it is not the taste. My supply has dipped drastically even with the pumping. So, I am also supplementing with a little formula now. And he loves eating solids. Is this how it happens? Or do I still have some hope?
    I am still trying to offer him the breast. Sometimes when he is sleepy, he opens his mouth, but then bites or pushes me away when he realizes what it is. Does this say that he is absolutely done?
    I am so not ready to wean him and am heart broken! Any guidance would be appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    19,895

    Default Re: Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

    Welcome, mama! I'm sorry abut the nursing strike. They stink. This link goes over all the ways I know of to get a baby back to the breast: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...to-breast.html. In particular, the skin-to-skin and instant reward techniques are supposed to be helpful.

    Some people will tell you that babies don't self-wean at less than a year, but I'm not convinced of it because I know 2 kids who self-weaned at around 9-10 months. Their moms did everything but still ended up making it to a year only by using their pumps. So if your little one won't go back to the breast, you're not alone.
    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!"

  3. #3

    Default Re: Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

    thank u mommal. i am trying all that already, except for rebirthing. I do not have a bath tub. I am in India and it is not a common bathroom fixture around here. Today when I tried, he opened his mouth and bit me hard, again!!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    10,440

    Default Re: Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

    Is he teething? That can trigger some strikes.

    My mom says I self-weaned at 9 months. She would offer, I would push away and cry and get down to run play

    At 11 months..,I would probably skip the formula if he is eating solids well, pump and offer breastmilk in a cup while continuing to offer; unfortunately, pumping is not as good as a baby at removing milk and maintaining supply, especially for a mom of an almost-toddler, so your supply will decrease. Try pumping every 2-3 hours, with at least one time between midnight and 5 AM to see if you can get it to increase. use the best quality pump you can possibly get; a hospital grade is best.

    I know how you feel. I tried so hard to get my cleft baby to nurse after his surgery, and he won't. It broke my heart Many hugs, mama.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Springfield, Oregon
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    Default Re: Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

    Handling a Nursing Strike
    by Attachment Parents of Lane County on Monday, January 30, 2012 at 9:20pm
    What is a Nursing Strike?
    *
    A nursing strike is when your babe refuses to nurse. *It is often characterized by back arching, twisting away, and screaming when attempting to nurse. *A strike lasts a day or longer. It is not abnormal to last two weeks. Here is more information:*http://www.drmomma.org/2010/09/is-yo...ng-strike.html
    *
    How do I Know it is Not Weaning?
    *
    Babies do not self-wean before 12-18 months. *If a baby is showing weaning characteristics before that time then it is likely something a parent is knowingly or unknowingly doing to cause premature weaning. *Actual child-led weaning typically looks like a tapering off of nursing to the point mom often doesn't even realize it. *Before one year babes still need nursing as a primary nutrition source, after one year breastmilk is still highly valuable. *If a child is actively refusing the breast such as screaming, back arching, and/or twisting away then you can assume safely it is a nursing strike (even if it happens post 18 months). *Nursing strikes can happen for many reasons but they do need resolved or will resolve themselves. *Here is more information:*http://kellymom.com/momblog/bf/normal/babyselfwean/ and for more about weaning you can read ''how weaning happens''.
    *
    *
    *Ideas to Help Handle a Nursing Strike
    *
    - *Offering a bottle may be more a hinderamce than help. Breastmilk can be offered via spoon or cup. Bottles shouldnt be offered when mom is home.
    - To help with a strike the first thing to consider is the ''mom swoop''. We become experts at the swoop and nurse, one automatic motion. As our kiddos grow they want more control over their actions and this can start to really bother them. So instead every time you offer do it slowly. Let babe have as much control over the nursing position as possible. Many find this a good time to try the position where baby sits upward on your lap facing you to nurse.
    - Never press the issue, if babe refuses go with it. Offer again in an hour.
    - During this time maximize skin to skin contact. Go topless, in a bra, in a tank. Put babe in a tank or topless.
    - Try a warm bath together, quite warm. Make it a candlelit bath, put on some white noise. This mimics the womb and several babes will return to nursing in such conditions.
    - You can also try dream feeding, this is feeding while babe sleeps. As odd as it sounds many parents have had success holding their babe close and spinning around before offering to nurse, the temporary safe disorientation has been known to help.
    - Engage in topless play time. Get on the floor topless and play with your kid. Let your kiddo find the breasts and come back to them themself.
    - If you suspect teething pain may be a contributer offer something frozen (frozen berries, ice cube in mesh feeder) before nursing as it helps numb pain.
    - As a last result one can also try pumping until they let down and then offering to nurse.
    - Consider a physical problem such as an ear infection or thrush.
    *
    It will happen! Just have patience and minimize filling in nursing with other options.
    Baby Girl "Piper" born Feb 12th, 2010. She is a true blessing!

    And a baby who is now an Angel in Heaven Feb 7th, 2008.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

    Thank u Susan and Redpowerlady... Red, I am trying a lot of what you have written, but there are some pointers that I never read before. Will definitely try them.

    I hv no special update other than he is still biting me hard when I offer to nurse. Just biting, no nursing. Bites and then pushes me away. I suspect the reason is teething plus nasal block because of teething. His nose is not blocked during the day. But in the night, it is keeping him awake. It is very dry climate here. We are trying saline drops and vapourizer for that. All said, he has never liked nursing so much. And now, he likes bm in a sippy too much for my liking.

    Anyway, the biting is one more extra problem added to this mess! What do you do when the baby is on a strike and is biting? No resources talk about that!!! I truly want to get back to nursing even if it is just 1-2 times a day. But I am getting too disheartened and scared by the rejection and biting pain.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    Default Re: Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

    Squirt some breastmilk up his nose to clear it

    I hear you on the biting. My fourth bit me so badly one day when I was trying to convince him to nurse post-op. It was hard to keep trying after that.

    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/older-baby/biting.html
    http://www.llli.org/faq/bite.html

    But none are really applicable because he is probably biting as soon as you offer

    What about pain medications for the teething? Maybe that would help?
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Springfield, Oregon
    Posts
    916

    Default Re: Unexpected Weaning: Need Support!

    Here are some tips on biting.

    Biting at Breast
    by Attachment Parents of Lane County on Wednesday, October 19, 2011 at 8:55pm

    Biting at Breast

    By Natasha Joseph in The Coolest Mamas in Eugene



    When dealing with biting at the breast it is helpful to try to identify cause of biting.



    A. Babe's mouth hurts - Happens during teething and some illnesses - To solve this biting give babe something frozen to eat (ice, Frozen banana, really cold water) before nursing. This numbs the pain a bit. Wear a teething necklace. If babe does bite very calmly (not exaggerated or loud) say 'ouch' and offer babe the teether. This method helps prevent pain and biting. It also teaches acceptable alternatives. Keep in mind that it does work toward teaching that biting hurts, and the beginnings of empathy, but that a babe really isn't developmentally capable of understanding that yoir experience is different from theirs (theory of mind) until around age 4. Another option is to change your nursing position so the pressure in the mouth may be different and cause less pain.



    B. Babe is done nursing and bored/milk has slowed - This usually presents when ababe bites mostly at end of nursing - What you can do is watch for when babe is done actively nursing, then gently end nursing session before biting occurs. Offer a teething toy, if he doesn't want it that's ok. After your nipples heal try to go back to letting him end sessions, just occupy him by playing 'this little piggy' with his toes or some other game at end of session. This breaks the biting cycle and teaches acceptable alternatives. This can also happen when milk flow slows, breast compressions may be helpful.



    C. Babe wants attention - If you (like most of us) multitask while nursing the biting may simply be babe wanting you to stop for a minute and go all googly over him. We are biologically programmed to need that connection. You can still multitask (or you just might go insane, I would), just keep that in mind and love him up.



    If consistent with this method it is very likely the biting will stop, if in two weeks babe is still biting after being consistent feel free to message me. Being over exaggerated or causing pain to child are not effective methods and even if they were effective for biting they would likely cause behavioral issues. Same goes for punishing, time outs, etc for this issue.



    Additionally some women get nipple sensitivity around the time of their menstrual cycle and during pregnancy.
    Baby Girl "Piper" born Feb 12th, 2010. She is a true blessing!

    And a baby who is now an Angel in Heaven Feb 7th, 2008.

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