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Thread: Nutrition while weaning

  1. #1
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    Jun 2012
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    Default Nutrition while weaning

    Hello all,

    D just turned one and is on the mend from her second in a series of two surgeries 10 days ago. All went well, and once she gets past the recovery stage, I'd like to work on weaning. My plan is to do the don't offer don't refuse method. Over the past month or two her interest in nursing definitely waned, but after her surgery she did want to nurse a little more during our first few days home. I think that as she gets further away from the surgery, she'll get less interested again. My concern is keeping up with her nutrition while she's weaning.

    We gave her cow's milk for the first time late last week and she's kind of non-committal about it. I've been giving it to her a few times a day to get her used to it, and she will take at most a few sips of it and that's it (and a few sips is being generous). She is comfortable drinking water from a cup, so I know that she can drink from a cup, I think she's just not sure what to do with milk yet.

    In terms of other foods, we basically do three meals a day with a snack or two (depending on our schedule). she eats a wide variety of foods, lots of vegetables, some fruit, protein, grains, etc. I think that in terms of solid food, she gets a good variety, although she doesn't always eat things so much as plays with them.

    Do I need to wait until she's drinking milk regularly before weaning or would she start drinking milk more if she's nursing less? Could I replace the milk with other forms of dairy, or other forms of calcium? Is she eating enough even if she's playing with her food some of the time? (so many questions in my head)
    Last edited by @llli*tallmadre; April 29th, 2013 at 07:15 PM.

  2. #2
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Nutrition while weaning

    Can you remind us how old she is? The answers to your questions will differ depending on her age.
    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
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    Default Re: Nutrition while weaning

    She just turned 1 a few weeks ago.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Nutrition while weaning

    Thanks.

    Okay, she's still really young, and that means you want to go slow with weaning. Not ony because 1 year-olds can be slow to transition to solids and cow's milk (if they will take cow's milk at all) but also because most 1 year-olds are nursing quite a lot and that means your supply is likely still on the high side. Slow, gradual weaning = reduced chance of plugged ducts and mastitis. The "Don't offer, don't refuse" path sounds perfect for you, so that's excellent thinking on your part!

    Cow's milk is not a necessary part of a baby's diet, even if she's totally weaned. You can meet a baby's requirements for calcium and healthy fat using other foods. Cheese and yogurt are the usual choices, since it's easy to figure out how many cups of whole cow's milk are equivalent to a serving of whole-milkyogurt or cheese- the info is all online. But you can meet a baby's "dairy" needs using other foods- it just requires a more careful eye on baby's nutrition and a lot more label reading. Some babies love cow's milk, and some don't like it at all. Whether or not your baby will increase her consumption of cow's milk as she weans depends on her tastebuds. Just keep offering, and be patient. The transition from needing to thing but mama's milk to a mostly solid food diet is often a slow one.

    You've done an awesome job nursing this far! And kudos to you for being open to continuing past a year, and not weaning on day 365. It takes a generous mama to do that.
    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: Nutrition while weaning

    Thanks mommal,

    I had thought about cheese and yogurt. We did yogurt today, although she wasn't so sure about it. Mostly I think because she likes to feed herself with her fingers and you can't really pick up yogurt. But she'll get it in time. We're working on spoons, too.

    I have had some problems nursing, (can't recall whether you've followed), so I'm anxious to at least start the process of weaning. I kind of had hopes during and right after her surgery that she'd curtail part of it herself. Our first few nights home she slept through the night, I mean totally through the night. Not a peep from dusk to dawn. It was supremely awesome. But as she started healing the pain started, she started waking up again. I suppose it doesn't help that she was teething at the same time. So she started wanting to nurse at night again. <sigh> we'll get there.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Nutrition while weaning

    Yes, I do remember the struggles you've had! That's why I feel you're being so amazingly generous to continue on at this point, rather than simply cutting your LO off. I think most women would have thrown in the towel long since.

    One way to get yogurt into a baby without a spoon is in a squeezable tube (like Go-gurts) or in a cup. Kefir can go in a sippy and it's a great probiotic. And some babies really like the sour taste!
    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!"

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Nutrition while weaning

    Ah, I had forgotten about the go-gurts. Thanks for the tip.

    As for throwing in the towel, I did honestly try. She wouldn't take formula. She wouldn't even take breastmilk from a bottle or cup. I suppose she would have if i'd let her get hungry enough, but I didn't want to go through with that. So I don't feel like I had much of a choice other than keeping going. It actually feels kind of disempowering. And honestly, I know this is not the popular way, but I would have preferred fond memories of smiling at my daughter while she drank formula from a bottle to practicing deep breathing exercise to ward off a panic attack while she nursed on my breast. I know people will tell me it's worth it, but I'm just not feeling that way right now.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Nutrition while weaning

    I've followed your threads, tallmadre, and I hate to hear you say it feels disempowering. I know you feel like you didn't have a choice, but like you said, you could have let her get to the point where she would have had to take formula. But you didn't. You put her first, you fought against the thoughts and feelings that were wreaking havoc on you, and YOU WON. I'd say that's pretty empowering, and you're like a superhero in my eyes for getting through it, and for being as open about your feelings as you have been on this forum. So I hope that you do get to take away at least some positive feelings from breastfeeding!

    Sorry, a little off-topic from the point of your post, but I had to get my two cents in

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Nutrition while weaning

    I agree that you are wonderful for putting your DD's needs and wants before your own just proves what a wonderful mom you are. I suffer from aniexty and aniexty attacks also but luckily haven't had any attacks for years. I was on medication until I got pregnant with my DD. The axiety didn't really start bothering me again until a just recently (maybe a month or so ago). I have been really very overwhelmed with everything (work, my online degree classes, motherhood, etc.). Sometimes it just seems like all I do is nurse (especially on the weekends). My DD seems to take forever and sometimes all I can do is think about everything else I should be doing but can't because I'm nursing at the time. I do enjoy nursing for the most part though. Sometimes I think it would be easier to just give her formula or totally wean her as soon as she turns one but then I wonder if it really would be easier. DD is really bonded to me and nursing. There are times when I'm busy doing something at home and her dad is trying to preoccupy her but all she wants is me and/or to know where I am and what I'm doing. Not that our situations are exactly the same but it makes me feel a little better knowing that I'm not the only one who experiences aniexty about nursing. My DD is teething and has been up about 2x a night the last couple of nights (prior to sleeping thru the night or only getting up once) and I'm EXHAUSTED. I know that this is nothing to some other babies but I'm not used to it so I'm really feeling it. There are times that I think to myself 'come on, not again' or 'please hurry up and finish so we both can go back to sleep'. I hate feeling this way towards my DD and try to distract myself or talk myself out of the way I'm feeling. I just want to be able to enjoy this time with her and have fond memories of it. It was much easier before I started taking my classes again. I'm not sure what how much support you have from family or friends. I know that I wish mine would be more supportive and understanding. Sometimes I think they would just rather I put DD on formula or totally wean as soon as she turns a year.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Nutrition while weaning

    I can totally understand why it can feel disempowering to feel like you have no choice but to continue to nurse. But I am with Carm3 that you should still feel really proud of yourself for not letting your LO get to the point where she was forced to take formula. You could have. My mom was forced to wean when my sister was 3 months old, and she and my dad eventually got her to take a bottle. My dad says it was "the hardest thing" he ever had to do- and this is a guy who walked from Katmandu to the base of Mt. Everest! But it's still possible, when you're desperate enough or tough enough.
    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!"

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