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Thread: Husband wants me to wean 13 month old

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    8,018

    Default Re: Husband wants me to wean 13 month old

    I have posted on this issue before in the threads posted by a pp. I had this exact same issue with my DH. A few different thoughts come to mind:
    (1) One of the thread deals extensively with the issue of DH feeling like he is not getting enough attention or time with you. Some guys may not even vocalize this issue but it is very common. My DH eventually did tell me this and said that he really felt that we never got any time to ourselves and our relationship was suffering. The real problem was that, for a period of a couple of months, our Eva would not go to sleep at night without nursing, and she would not take a bottle. This meant that we could not ever go on dates in the evenings.
    My proposal to dh was that he was looking at weaning as a cure-all, but that it was not necessarily going to be effective and there were other less drastic measures we could take to address the problem. We eventually got DD to go to sleep without nursing and now we are able to get a babysitter and go out every couple of weeks.
    So you might let your dh know that you are not willing to wean, but you are willing to look at other ways to work on issues that he is concerned about.
    (2) I also told my DH all about the benefits to our dd of continuing to bf, and that the only way I was going to wean would be if he could show me that weaning would be what was best for our daughter. Of course, he could not.
    (3) We also don't know many people who BF this long, and I told dh that I thought his opinion was being affected by fear of deviating from the norm or social criticism. I told him that I was not willing to put someone else's ill-informed opinion above what I knew was best for our daughter. I told him that I thought part of the reason he loved me was that I am not a conformist/follow-the-crowd kind of woman.
    (4) This is the most important in my opinion. DH and I were making steps toward him accepting ebf for a while, but still he would make unsupportive comments that really upset me. Finally, one morning, I told him (without anger) that Eva and I really needed his full support. I told him that, even though I was not asking for any medals, I really needed his recognition that I had given so much of myself to do what was best for our dd. I told him that when he made critical comments, it hurt me so much because it disregarded and devalued the blood, sweat, and tears that I had put into breastfeeding. I tried to tell him this in a way that was simply asking for his support, but not accusing him of anything or putting him on the defensive.
    Since that day, things have been a lot better. Although I still think he would be happy if we would wean, he is much less critical than before.
    HTH

    Molly

    Loving mama to JP (DS, 1/03 ~ nursed 6 mos), EL (DD1, 9/05 ~ nursed 4 yrs), EJ (DD2, 3/08 ~ nursed 3 yrs 9 mos), and
    JM (DD3, 6/12 ~ currently nursing), all born naturally
    Devoted wife to SAHD P, my hero
    A few of my favorite things that I've discovered on the forum: co-sleeping, baby-wearing, tandem nursing, baby-led solids, cloth diapering, APing, selective vaccination...the list goes on

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,048

    Default Re: Husband wants me to wean 13 month old

    My dh started talking about weaning around 18 months (I think it was). My dd will be 3 in a month and she's ALMOST completely weaned.

    It is REALLY hard to wean when mom doesn't want it and baby doesn't want it. I did do mother-led weaning... but I did it when we were both at least close to ready.

    What has helped me has been:
    for dh to get alone time with me and with the child. She needs to be his baby too.

    explain the weaning process, the options, the consequences. He backed off quite a bit when I told him that I expected he'd be there for her and hold her while she screamed for me in the middle of the night because there were times when to be there for her but to deny her my breast was just teasing her. And he would have a very crabby and sometimes completely inconsolable baby while weaning if we took it on full force. My husband didn't do all that much in terms of child care. He's been a great dad, but I'm the stay at home parent and did almost all the night time parenting. If he wanted me to make my job harder by dropping my best tool, he needed to do more. This shut him up for some time, and when he WAS willing to do more work, I let him... he nightweaned her for me. And while she pushed him away and cried for me, they did end up bonding some because of it. Because he was THERE FOR HER.

    I need to make it clear to everyone, including myself, that dd's relationship to dh is between THEM. My breastfeeding should not be a part of the equation. If dd wasn't responding to dh the way he liked, HE needed to fix that. My being less attached would not (and by the way, HAS NOT) make her MORE attached to someone else. It may cause her to display some more "independent" behaviors.. like refusing to hold my hand while in a parking lot, for example, but it has not helped her bond with anyone. If I am loving and responsive to her needs she is more secure and loving. And that makes sense. It's just a bad idea to distance yourself from your child in the hopes that she will be nicer to dad. I've learned from my mistakes. DAD needs to work harder.

    Recongnize that you are working on the weaning process. You are feeding your child food. And there will be times when you will use distraction and put off nursing for whatever reason. That's all part of weaning. My dh and I strongly agreed on a gentle and gradual weaning. Well, it's taking over a year and a half... I'd say that's gentle and gradual.

    Do place limits on nursing that show respect for your partner. I stopped allowing my dd to nurse at meal time and even made her sit in her own seat, which really helped out the family dynamics a lot. It was no longer dd and I on one side of the table and dh on the other. Limits are important and seem to give hope to dads that their child will in fact grow up. It also gives dad a glimps of the reality of mother-led weaning (we've had more than a few tears and tantrums for "nursies.")

    Introduce him to other LLL families. Let him get to know other dads of nursing toddlers. Many of us thought that was totally weird before it happened to us! It's WAY too hidden.

    And I've been pleasently surprised that even though you can have some enormous arguments and disagreements and stress over parenting and even when dad feels left out and mom feels isolated, a marriage can still thrive. Things will be OK.

    Julie

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    866

    Default Re: Husband wants me to wean 13 month old

    I noticed someone gave you some LLL links on the topic. Here is an additional link of info from KellyMom....

    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/bfextended/ebf-benefits.html

    Suggest to your DH to take some time and research the topic. He'll find that:


    Nursing toddlers benefit NUTRITIONALLY
    Nursing toddlers are SICK LESS OFTEN
    Nursing toddlers have FEWER ALLERGIES
    Nursing toddlers are SMART
    Nursing toddlers are WELL ADJUSTED SOCIALLY
    Nursing a toddler is NORMAL


    Here is some more info from LLL with MANY additional links of great FACTS.

    http://www.lalecheleague.org/NB/NBextended.html

    You might tend to argue the emotional side of things. Let him read the facts for himself....'s
    Last edited by Aidens Mommy; March 17th, 2007 at 03:28 PM. Reason: post another link
    Leslie- Momma to Aiden 02/28/06 AND Owen 2/28/08...What timing

    Older and wiser voices can always help you find the right path, if you are only willing to listen.--Jimmy Buffet


  4. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    139

    Default Re: Husband wants me to wean 13 month old

    My DH was the same way when our DD#2 turned one he was saying "how long does it take to wean?" Well, I wasn't ready to wean and neither was she. It was VERY OBVIOUS so here we are almost 16 mos and still nursing happily. DH doesn't say much about it anymore because I told him that I'm not going to wean her just because she's reached a magical age. I'll wean when she's ready. She still doesn't sleep through the night so I think he lets me continue BF without too much complaining because he doesn't have to get up with her if I'm still BFing. As for family, my family luckily is "do what you feel is best" and my hubby's family doesn't say much. I'm lucky in that sense. My SIL was forced to wean her DS at 14 mos and they were both miserable....her hubby said "no more" and she obeyed. I say that as a mother we know what our children need and what's best for them so we need to do what we feel is best not what others tell us is best!

    I'm the only one who can calm any of my three kids when they are upset or hurt. And they are 10, 8, and 16 mos. It's a "mommy thing"!! Be proud of it!

    Good Luck!!

    DH 06/96
    DS 12/96
    DD#1 09/98
    DD#2 11/05

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    69

    Default Re: Husband wants me to wean 13 month old

    Thank you all so very much for your support! I am so very glad that I told Dh that we are not ready to give up breastfeeding and I stood my ground.
    I printed off several reports (especially a great one from the AAP) and he read them over the weekend and now says he understands why I am doing it and believes in me.
    I am thankful for all of your support - I was feeling down and not really appreciated.

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