My beautiful daughter is 17 months old and has always been a very happy, healthy breastfed baby. She LOVES her 'boobie'! I decided very early on that I would breastfeed on demand and co-sleep and, despite the sleepless nights and demands on my body, I have been happy with this decision, believing it to be the best thing for my baby and me. As her first birthday came and went, I realised that I would be in it for the long haul, and I wanted my daughter to be the one to decide when to wean. Last Friday, while suffering with a fever and cough/cold, she had her last breast feed, and she has been on strike ever since. I'm desperately sad, because I wasn't at all expecting her to stop so suddenly, and I'm not at all ready, although I am beginning to accept that our delicious, bonding breast feeding times are over ( The reason that I am writing is to beg for some advice on how I can help my daughter adjust to this huge change in her life. She has always depended on breast feeding to get to sleep, for comfort and reassurance, and she's just so sad. She's cried more in the last 5 days than she has in the past 17 months! She is still asking for 'boobie', and I'm still offering, but she doesn't want it and gets very upset about this. I'm just so desperate to help her...
Poor you and DD Is she still ill? This is a nursing strike, rather than weaning. Have you tried lots of skin to skin contact, having a bath together maybe? Or getting her to feed when she's half awake?
Or would you rather find a way to help her accept that it's over?
Hello EauRouge ) Thank you so much for your response! I'm desperate for her to feed again, but I thought it might be too late now? I haven't tried any of your suggestions. Thank you so much! We are still co-sleeping so I'll try and nurse her when she wakes in the night. Why do babies have a nursing strike? She still isn't 100% but I thought she was well enough to feed again. Being a Mama is so hard sometimes...
If she's got an ear infection or a tooth coming then it might be painful for her to nurse. Must be confusing and scary for a little one if the thing they get most comfort from is hurting them, they don't know it's temporary.
All the tricks that work for getting newborns to breastfeed can also be tried with toddlers. There are some ideas for dealing with nursing strikes here. Best of luck
If she's been crying for 5 days I would personally take her to see the GP, to rule out an ear infection (or something else) which can be very painful. It sounds like she is in need of comfort but might be scared that feeding is going to lead to pain
She might also have mouth ulcers, though if this was the case she probably wouldn't be keen to eat either.