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Thread: Pressured to wean

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    44

    Default Pressured to wean

    My dd is almost twelve months. She nurses several times during the day and throughout the night. I am getting A LOT of pressure to start weaning her. I am very happy with our current nursing relationship and don't feel any need to start weaning. Fiance was never too encouraging about breastfeeding and has now started making comments on the fact that she won't need the milk after a year. I know that there are so many benifits to both dd and myself that I don't want to wean. It is really stressing our relationship. How do I convince him that dd will wean when she is ready and that it is best for her to do it that way? Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    1,198

    Default Re: Pressured to wean

    Hey there... so sorry you are dealing with this! A couple of us have replied to your first posting of this topic.... check those out!
    good luck....hang in there....and come back and let us know how it's going!
    Jsmom

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    1,551

    Default Re: Pressured to wean

    Hi momma2bre,
    Congratulations on your happy and successful breastfeeding relationship so far. It sounds very fullfilling to you. You sound frustrated at this recent pressure from your fiance to push weaning before you & dd are ready.
    LLL doesn't have a particular timeline or age at which they recommend weaning. LLL simply states that ideally the breastfeeding relationship will continue until the baby outgrows the need. The weaning process actually begins as soon as you introduce solids. So perhaps you could lightheartedly say to your fiance that you have already weaning her at (whatever age she was when she started solids).
    Here is an article that discusses different ways to handle criticism.
    How do I respond to and avoid criticism about breastfeeding?
    This is a short one - a review of a session at the International Conference about why anyone might breastfeed a toddler.
    Breastfeed a Toddler?
    This is a very helpful article about the benefits of nursing beyond one year.
    Nursing Beyond One Year
    You might find other articles you like here, too.
    Extended Breastfeeding (Beyond One Year)

    I hope this helps!
    Mary

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    44

    Default Re: Pressured to wean

    Thanks for all the advice and encouagement.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    863

    Default Re: Pressured to wean

    I hear you... we've had pressure from my inlaws. My current reply is to simply say that the WHO reccomends bf for 2 years and beyond so we expect to go at least that long.
    Kristie L.
    LLL Leader
    (the poster formerly known as fezzik812)
    Wife to Brett, Mommy to Seamus (5.1.05), and Emelie (1.18.08)
    "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."- Ghandi

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,048

    Default Re: Pressured to wean

    Sometimes a dad may feel like breastfeeding comes between him and the child. See if this is the real issue.. or if he's worried about spoiling, limits, others' opinions, etc. There may be a way of dealing with the underlying issue and making everyone happy. For example, my husband was hinting about weaning (this was after she turned two, so he's been quite patient and supporive) and it turned out that it was more a combination of a few issues. Having them go out together without me and leaving them at home together took care of most of the problem but I also "spot weaned" (no nursing at certain times) and that took a lot of pressure off.. We were all ready for some limits by then, anyway.

    I also pointed out to my husband that:
    When we were babies, breastfeeding was so rare - they offered a shot at the hospital to make the mother's milk dry up. It wasn't promoted as healthy. Now we mothers are trying to do the best for our babies by following the recommendations, but once we get to a year it becomes so much more than nutrition... many of us feel strange, unsupported, etc.. but so many of us are experiencing this, that dispite what society has taught US, its just not weird to keep nursing. By doing what's right, recommended, etc. we've walked into new territory (new to me, many of my peers) and find ourselves slowly changing an entire culture. This makes weaning kind of complicated. I have found myself going against my own programming. I have a hard enough time dealing with my own silly hang-ups, let alone everyone else's. But I am parenting the best way I can... And I try to suggest he do the same.

    Neither of us expected to toilet train before weaning. But what would you rather do for three years?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    323

    Default Re: Pressured to wean

    ((((HUGS))))
    I know it can be really tough to keep pushing against what is, admittedly, a cultural norm not to breastfeed or to do so only minimally at best.
    I nursed my daughter for 2 years 7 months, and during that time encountered a lot of opposition, but luckily we spent the first 6 months in Brazil, where government sponsored billboards shout from every street corner slogans like "Breastfeeding is a Human Right" and "Mother's milk is the ONLY food for babies until six months" (my own translations from Portuguese).
    It can be so hard to have an unsupportive partner. After all, while nursing is a rewarding and loving experience, and we all KNOW that it's the best for our babies, it isn't always easy to be so giving 100% of the time. I know that the times I found it the hardest and needed the most support were the times my dh pressured me the most to wean, but I managed to get through it by sheer force of will.
    Quoting the WHO's current reccommendations for breastfeeding : 6 months ebf and bf to 2 years and beyond on demand can shut up some "well-meaning" advisors.
    I know of one woman who used to ask folks who tried to convince her to wean or to at least restrict nursings to a schedule: "can you GUARANTEE my childs physical and emotional safety if I do as you suggest?", with a really stern, serious look on her face. This usually shut up the staunchest of weaning advocates! (and it was always worth a laugh!)
    you can definately find lots of info on this site and links to great resources that can give you the kind of back-up you need to get through the tough times.
    GOOD LUCK!

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