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Thread: I want to wean my son

  1. #1

    Default I want to wean my son

    (if there is a better forum for this please move!)

    DS2 will be 8 this week, and he still feeds and asks for feeds morning and night, though I am not sure there is any milk! He is quite a stressed small boy who struggles with separation issues at school and I think continuing to breastfeed is part of his way of holding on to Mummy.

    However he is nearly 8 and tbh I am very very ready to stop feeding him (I am also feeding my DD who is 4) I have brought the subject up many times over the years and again more recently and he reacts badly and says that he needs 'Boof'.

    Help! when we went on the path of child led weaning I never thought I would be at this stage!

    I have no one to talk this with.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
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    359

    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    I have no experience to offer, just hugs and wishes that you are successful in achieving your goals! ((hugs))

    The weaning sub-forum might attract more attention; you might want to cross-post.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
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    Salamanca, Spain
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    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    8 years old or 8 months old??

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Oregon
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    115

    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*k1mb3rly21 View Post
    8 years old or 8 months old??
    This isn't unheard of and I think she means age 8. It's more common in other parts of the world and I guess even though I wouldn't call it common overall, I think she is here asking for help! I wish I had some source for you. You might google "weaning the older child"? Have you begun restricting access to the breast? As far as I know you want to start removing a feed per day. Do you all share a family bed? Have you checked out this resource page? http://www.llli.org/nb/nbextended.html
    We and with our little monkey, born 9/30/2012.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    21,006

    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    Tips on weaning an older child:
    - Talk about weaning. Older children can internalize the rationales for weaning (e.g. it makes mom tired, it makes mom sore, if the child wasn't nursing mom might have more patience and time for play, etc.)
    - Set limits on nursing. These can be limits on when nursing takes place (e.g. only right before bed or only when everyone wakes up), the duration of nursing (e.g. no longer than x minutes, or only until mom finishes singing a song or counting to 10), or they can be limits on where nursing takes place (only at home, only in bed, only in a special chair).
    - Offer a reward for weaning. A lot of moms of older nursing children incentivize weaning with a party- your child picks the location, the gift(s), and the attendees. When the party is over, so is nursing.
    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!"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    240

    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    Really I have no advice, as I have only one child, and he is just five. But I want to let you know it is ok - to nurse but also to want it to stop.

    One thing that has helped me to lead my son who just turned five in Ocotber to weaning was to tell him that he could only nurse very shortly and only just before going to sleep, and that when he turned five we would stop nursing. I did this for about 6 months or so. I counted to 10 and that was it. most of the time he let go on his own, if not I toldhim please stop now, it hurts(even when it did not). At the same time I told him each night that while nursing was going to end, cuddling each other and snuggling into the crook of my arm andkneading the folds of my elbow as he has done for the past few years while nursing would not end, that my love for him would not end, but that nursing had to end because the suckling caused me pain but that I was very happy for him to snuggle up to me and to hug him.
    I also made it a point to tell him more often that I love him and care for him, that he would always be my son, even after he would stop nursing. My son very much wants to hold onto Mummy, so i tried my best to reassure him verbally and compensate with cuddles and any otehr form of physical touch rather than nursing and I feel it contributed to him being able to stop to be reassured of my love. I suppose what also helped was that we cosleep, so he can continue to feel my physical warmth, he now holds my hand for falling asleep.

    But to be honest, what really did it was him contracting hand foot and mouth disease which made nursing painful, he wanted to resume afterwards and found that he had forgotten how to latch on and cried bitterly with disappointment, but has now gotten over it, about 4 weeks later.

    Somethign else I noticed was that as he approached his birthday and knew nursing was going to end he began to suddenly place more importance on his favourite stuffed animal and now often takes it to day care and to bed.
    Now this is probably not an option for an 8 year old ( to bring a stuffed animal to school) but maybe you can buy him a thin necklace or friendship braclet - something he can wear and touch when he thinks of you.

    I did not do the weanign party because it would have involved letting people who assumed we stoped nursing years ago know that we still nursed and I suspect this would be the same for you, but you could still have a specail treat for him - a toy he wants, or a trip he wants to take just with you.
    Last edited by @llli*mammi; November 25th, 2013 at 06:04 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    We did a party with just my husband, me and my daughter. She got cupcakes and we made a big deal out of how great it was that she weaned. She still asked to pretend nurse after wards and talks about nursing a lot at age 4 but she does not nurse. I would really play up weaning and whatever incentive. I don't blame you for being ready to be done!
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    daisyboo, I found myself thinking of you and hope you are ok For me the hardest was nursing a five year old and no one knew and I knew I could not tell as I was definitley not ready for the criticism.

    I did some looking on google for more info on bf or rather weaning school age children and beside all the garbage I found this whcih might be of interest and even helpful to you:
    http://theparentingpassageway.com/20...-the-age-of-4/ - perhaps a bit lecturing, but her points are really good I think, and I wish I had found it when I was trying to figure out how to go about it this summer. I do not know the author or the website otherwise, only this article, but it says she is an IBCLC (http://theparentingpassageway.com/about/)

    I also came across mention of this book Breastfeeding Older Children by Ann Sinnott is published by Free Association Books in 2010. Has anyone here read it?
    From the review in the Guardian http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandst...older-children it seems Ann Sinnott actually interviewed over 180 women who nursed older children. The Guardian article is not really in favour of bf older children but then that is to be expected.
    Last edited by @llli*mammi; November 26th, 2013 at 05:23 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    5,481

    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    Is there something kind of 'big' your son really wants, and you can give, that you can reward him with?

    Another idea- is there a family member he can go visit for a few days-something special he would enjoy (not a punishment.) Just learning he CAN live without nursing may help.

    If he is nursing to hold onto mommy, how about reassuring him on that score? Maybe a special weekly outing with mom, or daily special time just with you (no sibling)-it need not be long- time for a card game or a story, maybe a short walk together- is that possible?

    any chance the 4 year old will wean soon? I bet your 8 year old would be more open to weaning once younger sibling does. Just a hunch! However, if you & 4 year old still wish to nurse, don't wean for that reason.

    Your 8 year old is only nursing twice a day. This is ALMOST weaned. I would suggest, if you wish to hurry it along, ask your son to chose one time a day and move from there maybe? Or limit the length of the sessions?

    Any local LLL? You should be able to talk to them about your concerns, at least a Leader certainly. We tend to nurse our kids a long time

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    32

    Default Re: I want to wean my son

    Daisyboo~ I just want to send you some hugs. It is so clear that you are a dedicated mother to your children. I am inspired by you. For you, I hope that this weaning process goes well.

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