Thursday, February 28, 2008

It works for us

I tandem nursed all of my children, even though I had really never heard of such a thing, once I got pregnant with Mickey, I couldn't really imagine not nursing Greta all of a sudden, and so we just continued on....Because my children were/are all between 26 and 37 months apart, there really wasn't very much of actual, literal, two-at-a-time on the boobies, but much more like me nursing the little baby all the time, and the toddler in the morning, at nap, and before bed...or for night wakings....(or for the times when they ran smack dab into a wall, or fell off the couch, or kitty scratched them, and they ran to me crying for nursey)....it works for us and at times it has been a true lifesaver when dealing with toddlers and their many, many daily woes, (like the utter disruption of a new sibling!!!! To know that Mama will *still* nurse you, too, must be so relieving to the poor dear darlings!)

Here is one of many many cool articles about breastfeeding 'older' babies, thought I would share it with you all tonight :) I have read lots of this stuff through the years but I liked this one alot. Its not for every mother, but it is nice to read when this is what I have been doing for over a decade now! (Whens that magical weight loss part gonna kick in? LOLOLOLOL)

9 comments:

Angi said...

This is great timing. I have been thinking of how long I will nurse this fourth baby. I've never gone over 18 months so I need info on what its like. BTW-the magical weight loss thing I think is a hoax! (LOL) I never lose it all until I'm done nursing.

I am a Monkey's Momma said...

So glad to see you back...

I can't imagine *not* nursing my toddler. In fact, I have friends with toddlers about Ceci's age and when they have meltdowns in my presence, it takes all I have to not put the baby to breast.

It's nice to know that there are other real live moms who nurse their toddlers and tandem nurse too.

Trish said...

My kids were spaced too far apart to really tandem nurse. Julia was weaned at 4 years old when I was pregnant with Tommy. She told me at that point that there wasn't anything but spit in there :-)

Tommy just decided to wean on his own when he was 2 (I wasn't really ready, but he certainly was). Ruthie was born 2 years later.

Ruthie is completely weaned now - at 3. I was a little sad at first, but I'm enjoying the new freedom of not having to wonder what size bra cup I'll require on any given day :-)

Shelly said...

I was really looking forward to tandem nursing, but my daughter decided that she had had enough about six months into my pregnancy. I'm still hoping it will work out the next time, though ;o). Thanks for sharing the article!

Judit said...

Oh, I'm kinda jealous... I guess it just wasn't in the cards for me to ever get to nurse a toddler :( We will miss out on most of these lovely perks. But I can at least attest it's harder on the mom; I'm sure I was a helluva lot more sentimental about it than my weaned monkeyboy.
I hope you guys can hear me out on this. I hugely respect Dr. Newman, and I absolutely believe that by and large, breastfed toddlers are very happy and secure little people... but he seems to be implying that not breastfeeding is necessarily and by definition some kind of withdrawal of love. It just doesn't follow that IF breastfeeding equals love THEN love equals breastfeeding. Believe you me, that with good mothering, a reluctant-to-nurse kiddo can still get all the love and cuddles he/she needs for optimal emotional health. It feels somewhat unkind to me to suggest otherwise... you know what I mean?

Housefairy said...

Oh, Judit, I do understand. With all the polarizing "stuff" that is going on in the online Mama world right now, I hesitated to even post this. I know how far the things we are "suppossed to do" can get, and how the seemingly unweilding "checklist" of Mothering can be...

I don't think anyone except the immediate family can understand the circumstances surrounding a nursing realtionship, whether the baby is never once put to the breast or whether they nurse for years. Each baby is different, too, and to gauge ANY complex exchange between a mother and baby on whether or not they do something, or how long they do it for, is of course, hurtful and wrong.
That being said, a part of the Mommy Wars is the damned if you do and damned if you dont bit. The bottle feeding Mamas are suppossed to feel guilty for using formula, and the breastfeeding Mamas are suppossed to feel guilty for being such boob-flashing nudies. Shame shame, guilt, guilt, and for what? A hungry baby? Its so absurd, and yet it is everywhere. There are fluctuations depending on how "crunchy" or "mainstream" your social group is, your playgroup, your family....but the Moms always get the message that this vital and frequent part of their days and nights is wrong and wierd.

I dont know what to think about this all, but I know the guilt and shaming and judging has to stop. We need to understand eahc other more, or at least have the common courtesy to mind our own business. I only posted the article because after all these years, I still am well aware of how almost everyone feels about the older child nursing, that it is laziness on the part of the mother, that it is innapropriate, that it is wrong, and I needed to read something like this and it sort of fell into my lap.

Housefairy said...

Also, Judit, I TOTALLY agree that many, many of the natural parenting Guru-types seem to go a bit too far with their conclusions, alienating what I can only guess are many many would-be admirers, and, for me, losing a bit of clout and respect when they do that. Dr Neuman and others, they set their sights a bit too narrowly and a bit too unrealistically, and I dont think it is necessary. We cant be "neutral" all the time, but we can all use a bit more factual info and a bit less emotional blackmail.

Corin said...

There's a huge part of me that really wanted to tandem nurse both my daughter and this new baby, and I still kind of hope to. But, my milk has gotten so low that it's almost non-existant. Did you loose your milk during your pregnancies, then it came back? Or was it always there?

Housefairy said...

I did suffer through very low milk and very sore nipples, but my kids were older, in the 2's, so it wasnt a big part of their "food", just their comfy-time. The milk came back of course when the baby was born, and all of them were very very happy! The jealousy of the new baby on "their" nursies was much lower when they said "I want nursy!" and I said "Ok, sweety"....

Some people would consider a cessation of nursing or loss of milk to be the perfect time to wean, but for us, late pregnancy was sort of a lull in the nursing and then it ressumed. I do tell Charlie sometimes that I have an ouchie, or that there is no milk right now, and he is ok with it. Casey was the youngest when I got pregnant with Charlie, 17 months old, and he nursed very continuously throughout the pregnancy, night nursing, etc. But he was the most traumatized when I was gone for a WEEK from the c section, so coming home and nursing again was a great re-bond for us during that tought tough time.