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Thread: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

  1. #1

    Default need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    Hello ladies,

    This is actually my very first post here on LLL. I don't know why it took me so long to post on here. I guess because I didn't really have any issues breastfeeding my DD, thankfully it just came natural to both of us. She just turned 1 year old a few weeks ago and I am so over pumping at work. I don't mind breastfeeding, but pumping at work 3x a day really has taken away time from doing actual work and I've become really backed up on my work. So I'm ready to wean off the pump and wean altogether closely after that. I've read on how to go about it slowly to prevent engorgement. I've started giving my DD a small 2.5 oz bottle of cow's milk before nursing her to bed at night to get her use to the different milk. Luckily she's taken to it very well, so I don't know why I am stalling on this.

    During the week my MIL watches her while I'm at work so I BF when I drop her off. She used to be a really picky eater but recently she's been eating solids fairly well. She gets oatmeal mixed w/fruit puree after her first bottle. Then gets her second bottle followed by about 3-4 oz of baby food for lunch and a third bottle around 4pm. I used to BF when I picked her up but have stopped that "snackie" feeding, unless she asks for it. So I've gone the "don't offer, don't refuse" route with that one. Should I ask my MIL to offer another solid snack after her 3rd bottle?

    On the weekends, I BF her in the morning, followed by the same oatmeal and fruit puree meal. If we have waffles or pancakes for breakfast, I'll let her have some of that as well. I nurse her around 10 am to put her down for a nap. Give her about 3-4 oz of puree for lunch around 12:30/1 pm. Nurse her again around 4 pm. Dinner (6:30 pm) is again about 3-4 oz of puree (If we're having something she can have from our dinner, I'll give her bits of that as well.) Bed time (8:30 pm) is a 2.5 oz of cows milk and nurse her to sleep.

    She usually doesn't fall asleep for naps or at bedtime without me nursing her on the weekends. She also wakes up at least once, (lately twice) a night to nurse. And my husband can't get her back to sleep when she wakes up at night, so I HAVE to nurse her back to sleep.

    I guess I'm basically asking for a helping hand and words of encouragement to get this weaning process going and help me get through it. It feels like I have no idea what I'm doing and I'm a bit stressed about it. Thanks ladies.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Cleveland, OH
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    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    I would focus on pump weaning for now. Since she is okay with cows milk, ask you MIL to offer cows milk with meals and slowly cut down the EBM bottles. Keep nursing while you are together and don't stress about the nursing to sleep. Work on eliminating the pump, find your new normal, then evaluate from there.

    Also, I would work on cups instead of bottles. I wouldn't give anything but EBM or formula in a bottle, and I can't put my finger on why exactly I feel that way, so maybe it is just me. If she struggles with sippy cups, try a straw cup.
    My little man was born 12/17/2010.

    Baby girl was born 4/30/2014.

  3. #3

    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*sassypants View Post
    Also, I would work on cups instead of bottles. I wouldn't give anything but EBM or formula in a bottle, and I can't put my finger on why exactly I feel that way, so maybe it is just me. If she struggles with sippy cups, try a straw cup.
    I have heard from many moms to not give cows milk in bottles, however, my MIL and I have agreed to continue the bottle and just transition her into cow's milk first. It could be because of our background and upbringing but we both think Sarah, my daughter, would adjust easier this way. Both she and my mom weaned me and my husband off of the bottle after cow's milk was already introduced.

    Sarah does drink from sippy cups and straw cups well, but she'll only take a few sips here or there (unless she's really thirsty). So I don't think she'd actually drink a full milk meal in one sitting and would probably take all day to finish what is offered in a cup. She's a very petite baby, 16 lbs, so she's going to need the calories from those 3 milk meals while at MIL's.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    What jumps out at me from your post is that you are really ready to pump wean, but that you "don't mind" breastfeeding. So I'm left wondering what "don't mind" really means to you. That is, are you really ready for this phase of your life to be over, or are you generally enjoying nursing and thinking that it's time to be done because your baby is a year old and you're ready to pump wean? The reason I ask is that a lot of moms continue to nurse after weaning from pumping. Once your baby is a year old and starting to eat more solid foods, you can use the breast a lot more flexibly. Nurse when you're with your baby, don't bother about supply when you're not. Use the breast to fill gaps in your baby's diet, and as a mothering tool. When I think about toddler nursing, I think of the breast as my ultimate mommy superpower. The one tool that can soothe a cranky, overtired, sick, or hurting baby when all else fails.

    This is not to pressure you- at all!- just to suggest a menu option that a lot of moms don't think about.

    I agree with the PP that you want to avoid bottles if possible, and wean closer to the first birthday than not. Not because it's so hard to wean from a bottle, but because bottles can be very hard on a baby's teeth. When a baby is nursing, she has to actively suck and swallow to get milk. But bottles deliver a flow of milk even when the baby is not actively sucking or swallowing, and that enables the milk to pool in the baby's mouth and feed the bacteria that cause dental decay. And unlike human milk, cow's milk from bottles is a known source of dental decay, particularly when given at night. If you're going to continue with a nightly bottle, I strongly suggest brushing your baby's teeth or wiping them down with a clean damp washcloth.
    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

    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommal View Post
    What jumps out at me from your post is that you are really ready to pump wean, but that you "don't mind" breastfeeding. So I'm left wondering what "don't mind" really means to you. That is, are you really ready for this phase of your life to be over, or are you generally enjoying nursing and thinking that it's time to be done because your baby is a year old and you're ready to pump wean? The reason I ask is that a lot of moms continue to nurse after weaning from pumping. Once your baby is a year old and starting to eat more solid foods, you can use the breast a lot more flexibly. Nurse when you're with your baby, don't bother about supply when you're not. Use the breast to fill gaps in your baby's diet, and as a mothering tool. When I think about toddler nursing, I think of the breast as my ultimate mommy superpower. The one tool that can soothe a cranky, overtired, sick, or hurting baby when all else fails.

    This is not to pressure you- at all!- just to suggest a menu option that a lot of moms don't think about.
    I love being able to comfort her by nursing, but I am definitely ready to pump wean. Just like you described, I don't want to have to worry about her not having enough milk during the day at my MIL's or any time we are not together, but be able to "fill in the gaps and soothe her" when we are. My husband is totally on board with me nursing for as long as I can, but I feel a bit of unspoken negative pressure from my mom since she only breastfed me and my siblings for a few months.

    Also, we're hoping to TTC baby #2 at the end of this year and I think it would be very difficult for me to BF while pregnant and also to tandem feed.

    Thanks for the clarification on the correlation between bottles and tooth decay. Maybe I can talk to my MIL about going the sippy cup route instead. If we do go this route, do I just substitute a bottle for the sippy?
    Last edited by @llli*anna827; March 24th, 2014 at 01:54 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    It sounds like you're really in the right place about toddler nursing! You love being able to use it for comfort, and you're not so worried about the nutritional aspect anymore. Perfect! I wouldn't worry about what might or might not happen if you get pregnant again. One of the wisest things I ever heard about weaning is "don't borrow trouble from the future". If you get pregnant and you decide that you're not enjoying nursing, wean at that time. Don't wean proactively because of something that might not happen, right?

    Also, don't let your mom's subtle negativity get to you. It might be motivated by guilt- a lot of women feel bad because they didn't nurse "long enough", even if 20-30 years ago the standards for what constituted "long enough" were a lot less than they are today. I know my 92 year-old grandma still feels bad that she didn't nurse her children.
    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

    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    So, while I'm decreasing my pump times, do I still put the pumped BM in a bottle for my MIL to give to Sarah or does that go in a sippy as well? Obviously the amount is going to decrease over time. Do I mix BM with cow's until it is all cow's milk over a few weeks? What if I'm not finished pump weaning before she's drinking all cow's milk at MIL's?? I'm sorry if these questions are coming off as dumb, I just don't have a clue as to what's the right way to go about this. I really appreciate all the advice and help.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Cleveland, OH
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    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    There is no right or wrong answer to that. You can put the EBM in a bottle or a sippy. If she is not loving the sippy cup yet, it might inspire her to drink more from the cup if there is some EBM in there. Some parents will mix mama's milk with cows milk, but that is usually to help baby adapt to the taste of cows milk. Since your daughter already takes it with no fuss I would keep them separate. Again, that is totally up to you. Try some different things and your MIL can let you know how it goes.
    My little man was born 12/17/2010.

    Baby girl was born 4/30/2014.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    Use the bottle for now, if it's working for you. Just think of it as a temporary thing that you're going to get away from inside the next year. And don't mix the milks unless your LO won't take cow's milk any other way. Cow's milk is a few $$$ per gallon. Your milk is priceless, and you don't want some percentage of it getting dumped because your LO didn't finish a mixed bottle.
    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!"

  10. #10

    Default Re: need support & encouragement weaning 1 yr old

    Thank you for the advice and help. My LO has no problems drinking whole milk straight, so good thing I asked about mixing the milks. I just wanted the transition to be easier on her tummy. I'll probably just increase one bottle feeding of whole milk each week then. I agree that the bottle is just a temporary thing for right now and I will wean her off of it within the next year.

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