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Thread: 13 month old only nurses when I offer- weaning?

  1. #1

    Default 13 month old only nurses when I offer- weaning?

    My 13 month old has been nursing when she wakes up and before bed, and will drink regular milk from a sippy cup during the day. However, she never asks to nurse, it's always me offering. She'll nurse for a few minutes on each side (at most) and then goes back to playing.

    This morning my husband offered her a sippy cup of milk when she woke up and she seemed to not even care that she hadn't nursed. I've tried researching this but can't figure out if she's weaning herself (since she never asks to nurse) or if she's just too distracted to ask (since she will still eat when I offer).

    My goal was to nurse for a year and then just see what happens but I think emotionally I'm having a harder time letting go than I thought I would and am clearly confused on if she's weaning herself or what's going on.

    Any other mamas go through the same thing? Thank you for any help!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    10,743

    Default Re: 13 month old only nurses when I offer- weaning?

    Your child does not ask to nurse- not in any way (verbally or non-verbally?) Is comfort nursing/nursing to sleep something your child ever did, or might do now?
    What about the cups of milk? are those offered or is she verbally asking for those?
    As far as emotionally letting go- why should you? You can certainly keep offering to nurse as much as you like. Weaning is a process with ups and downs and, when approached "naturally" is usually a process that involves both mom and child. There is certainly no way you can cause any harm by encouraging a 13 month old to nurse.
    Maybe your child is getting so much cow milk she is not asking to nurse due to that? Children nurse for three reasons- hunger, thirst and comfort. If her thirst and hunger are being met with cow milk, then she might not ask to nurse. This does not make cow milk preferable.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    24,911

    Default Re: 13 month old only nurses when I offer- weaning?

    Are you still enjoying nursing? Is it still a useful mothering tool for you? Do you place a high importance on retaining the health benefits of breastfeeding for yourself and your baby? If so, there's absolutely no need to wean even if baby seems disinterested enough in nursing to make weaning easy. Breastfeeding is a two-way street and a mom's desire to nurse is as important as whether or not the baby demands to nurse.

    I know it's confusing when you reach your initial goal and it seems like it came too soon. My initial goal with my first baby was also 1 year, but at 10 months I realized that I was enjoying nursing and that it was the MVP of my mothering toolkit. I just couldn't imagine doing without it, even if my child had been easy to wean (which she wouldn't have been). I kind of tentatively asked my husband if he would mind if I nursed longer- which was just dumb, because how did his opinion enter into the equation?- and when he was nothing but positive I freed myself of my initial goal. I went on to nurse that kid for 2 more years, and was so glad I did!

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