At what point can I stop BFing…experienced/ extended feeders advice needed!

(12 Posts)
Elfina Wed 27-Aug-14 10:34:51

I really had hoped that DD would have self-weaned by now, but its just not happened. Whenever she's with me, she wants to feed, which is 4 days out of 7 plus all night (co-sleep). She's reached a stage where she wants both boobs out, and goes between each one every minute or so, plus she fiddles with the other nipple, which drives me insane. If she had a choice, she wouldn't bother with food, she'd get everything from BFing, but I'm just sick of it being so constant.

At what age do you think the average understands that I want her to only feed at certain times, and that me saying no isn't a rejection of her? I've tried covering the other boob/ nipple, saying no, withdrawing, etc etc but she just screams and screams and cries real tears (like when she's hurt)...

TortoiseUpATreeAgain Wed 27-Aug-14 10:53:32

I did natural term bf but I did enforce night weaning with them all because I was just getting touched out otherwise. And I found that once they had night-weaned they weren't so obsessed during the day either.

I can't tell from your post whether you have a DH/DP -- our night weaning approach depended on his involvement and I think it's much more difficult without.

funchum8am Wed 27-Aug-14 10:54:05

How old is she?

bayrans Wed 27-Aug-14 10:58:58

How old?

And if I've read this right, she's away from you for 3 days out of 7? So she can go without?

Elfina Wed 27-Aug-14 11:07:08

Oh sorry, I've not been very clear. She's at nursery during the day 3/ 7 days, so feeds before and after. Yes, I do have a DH. She's 22months.

TortoiseUpATreeAgain Wed 27-Aug-14 11:16:00

At 22 months you should definitely be able to night wean, if you want to.

We did it over a weekend -- key points were that I would be "asleep" in something not conducive to breast access, and when DC wanted to feed DH would offer a cuddle and "No, Mummy's asleep. It's time to sleep. You can have a feed in the morning." I think he also had water on hand to offer if they were just genuinely thirsty, although IIRC that wasn't an issue. So DC was constantly reassured and offered cuddles, just not feeds.

The first night was generally the worst and then it improved rapidly over the next few nights -- that's why you probably want to time your first night to be when no one has to get up and go to work in the morning.

leedy Wed 27-Aug-14 13:49:03

Seconding that night weaning is definitely possible (and probably very helpful for you!) at that age - night weaned DS1 around 19 months and he was well able to understand "sleep time" and "milk in the morning". And yes, lots of Daddy cuddles were involved like Tortoise.

It's also not too early to learn that you sometimes have to wait for milk (and I speak as someone with a 22 month old as well who is prone to shouting MIIIILK! TIIIIME! DIT DOWN DERE, MAMMY!), though I do find if he's going through one of his milk monster phases it involves a lot of distraction. This has some good stuff on saying no to a nursing toddler:
www.bellybelly.com.au/breastfeeding/breastfeeding-boundaries-its-okay-to-say-no-to-your-toddler#.U_3TinWx3UY

noblegiraffe Wed 27-Aug-14 14:07:02

Screaming and tears is just tantrumming that she isn't getting what she wants. You wouldn't feel as bad at saying no if it was cake she was crying over! Put your boobs away, say 'all gone' and distract her with something else like CBeebies an educational toy. Or get up and take her out to the park or for a walk where she can't get at you. I find passing her to DH and disappearing for a bit helps too.

My 19 month old punches me in the neck when she wants milk so you have my sympathy! You definitely don't have to give it on tap though.

TwirlyCat Wed 27-Aug-14 22:39:34

I totally weaned off BF at 19 months and DD understood. Now a couple of months later she still (rather sadly but with full acceptance) says "mummy milky, all gone". I very slowly phased out feeds and used DH armed with a sippy cup of water at night.

PenguinsIsSleepDeprived Wed 27-Aug-14 22:46:38

She is also absolutely old enough to learn nursing manners. First nipple twiddle gets a warning to stop because it hurts mummy. Second she is told the feed will end if she does it again. Third time it does.

Sootball Wed 27-Aug-14 22:51:14

Yes. We night weaned dd1 at 19m and I hope to be night weaning Dd2 by 17m, nursing manners are . important!

Dd2 is 15m and had a horrible way of swiftly switching position and she gets two warnings then is boobs away. She eats very well indeed (more than her 4y sister!) Ans yet still drinks a.lot of milk.

catkind Wed 27-Aug-14 23:08:57

I've fed one to 4.5 and the other is still going at 2.5. Totally agree with PPs that you need to decide your limits. At 22 months she's likely to understand what you're saying to her even if she doesn't always like it! Also hopefully to still be a bit distractable.

With my two I night-weaned DS at 2 as the waking was bothering me. Still cosleeping, I just gradually dropped one feed at a time with lots of cuddles instead. (From me, DS rated cuddles with daddy as very inferior at that age.) DD wakes less and it doesn't bother me so haven't night-weaned yet.

I find it helps to say when they can have milk rather than a flat no. So "it's sleeping time now, you can have milk in the morning"/"it's playing time now, have some milk at bedtime". Assuming you don't just want to wean that is. And definitely no twiddling allowed.

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