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Thread: closet breastfeeder

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2006

    Default closet breastfeeder

    I took advantage of a 10 day trip when my daughter was 2.5 to wean her. The trip went fine, By the time i came back i had little production and my daughter seemed uninterested in the breast, this was back in July. a few days after I came back she started asking for it.

    now mind you my husband was the one that insisted that i wean, i wanted natural weaning but because he was so insistant and saying that i was raising a very consieded girl and harming my older child by paying so much attention to her, i thought that because i would be away for so long on a business trip, it would be the perfect time to wean.

    She has never really stopped, I have been secretly breastfeeding her for 4 months, and i feel bad that she knows she can not do it in front of her father, it is as if she knows she is doing something wrong. my older daughter sees her ans says "i am going to tell dad you are on the boob ahahaha" and i do not know what to do.

    i hate this situation because i tell her at first that she cannot have it and then i end up giving in because she starts screaming "i want mommies milk" I because i don't want DH to hear it, i just let her have it.

    I don't want to wean her, i want her to decide when to stop, but the situation is tense and i am not enjoying it as i should. there are some days when she does not ask and then other days when she wants it frequently.

    any suggestions. i am a bit disapointed in myself that i let dh dominate me in this issue, and now i got my daughter thinking she is doing something wrong. and also she is very interested in other women's breast, she wants to see them, even her older sister's is this normal? or could it be because we have created this taboo around the issue?

    thank you for any advice or help. i am wanting to vent a bit too.

    Jenny Bertha, Living in Guayaquil, Ecuador

    Mommy to
    Ilona born 8-20-2005
    Mia born 2-25-2008

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: closet breastfeeder

    Mama, I'm so sorry you're going through this. It sounds to me like your biggest issue is with your DH. You let him push weaning when you and your child weren't ready. And I think he's the one you need to stand up to. You might want to have a nice calm discussion with him, and make the following points:
    1. You were not ready to wean.
    2. Your toddler was not ready to wean.
    3. If he thinks nursing was causing problems before, he has to look at the problems the family secret has caused you since then: your younger child is so upset about nursing in the closet that she screams for it and won't take no for an answer (somewhat normal, but I think you're describing a level of desperation that's more intense than usual), and your older child is using the closet nursing as a weapon against you and your toddler.
    4. The whole situation is destructive to family harmony. You and the kids are keeping a secret from your DH, and you feel resentful that you allowed him to push you into doing something that you didn't want to do.
    5. While you know he doesn't like the idea of you continuing to nurse, you are in the process of weaning: if your daughter is nursing some days but not others you are well on your way to total weaning.

    Some of the things you mention are totally normal. My older daughter was always interested in other women's breasts, always draws nipples on her human figures, draws pictures of animals nursing, etc. And there's a nursing 3.5 year-old in my DD's preschool class who came over for a cuddle one day and leaned against my breast- and I knew what she was thinking!!! However, there's normal, healthy interest, and then there's the interest that's generated by taboos... I would encourage you to bring the secret out in the open so that the healthy interest doesn't turn into taboo interest, YKWIM?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: closet breastfeeder

    I think mommal had that right on.

    I'm sorry you're going through this. I would just tell your DH that you are still nursing and that when you wean is not up for discussion.

    How old was your first daughter when she weaned?

    I think it's truly harmful for the family dynamic to keep secrets like this - especially with the older child trying to use it as a weapon.

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Sunny Florida

    Default Re: closet breastfeeder

    I agree - You don't want your kids to see that there is any one person dominating your marriage. You also don't want them thinking that family secrets are ok. Plus, you daughter will probably take even longer to naturally wean now that this has become such a big deal. So I think its time for a serious conversation with your DH (when he is in a really good mood!).

    I wouldnt worry about your LO asking to see other's breasts. My sister didnt breastfeed her kids very long (just a few weeks), and once they learned that boys and girls had different parts, there was a natural curiousity about wanting to see everyone else's parts. Its not just in kids who are breastfed. I think its important to let them know that its ok to be curious, but you have to be respectful of other peoples private areas (in a way that doesnt make it taboo).

    I'm sure everything will work out fine - communication is key though!
    I'm a proud first time mommy , born 10/19/2010 and a wife to an amazing husband

    Birth 10/19/2010: 7lbs 3oz
    3 days old 10/22: 6lbs 6oz
    2 1/2 weeks old 11/05: 6lbs 14oz
    4 weeks old 11/17: 7lbs 15oz
    8 weeks old 12/15: 10lbs
    4 months old 2/28: 14lbs

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