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Question for all the bf gurus out you havent been asked this one before!!!

(22 Posts)
becaroo Wed 27-Aug-08 17:27:14

...I am due with my second child in 3 weeks.

Bf didnt work out for me first time round (VERY long complicated story involving tiny poorly baby, lots of blood and ng tubes and rubbish care etc etc) but I am determined to try again with this one.

I have already been in touch with La Leche League and found them very helpful and have bought some books and am leaking!!!!! (and its not blood!!!) so feel more positive than I did.

My question is this.....I was explaining to my 5 year old how babies get milk from their mummys boobies (I used the analogy of baby animals which amused him no end) and he then calmly turned to me and said "When the baby is born can I try your booby milk mummy?"

I was a bit taken aback but my gut instinct was to say "yes, of course" but now I am worried that was not the right response.

Firstly, my family (apart from dh) arent that supportive of my trying to bf again (although to be fair they are just worried with what happened last time) and I know they would be horrified/disgusted. Also, I am not sure about my own feelings about bf a 5 year old even if it is only once hmm I know you are not supposed to express for a while in order to get bf established well.

Wondered if any of you had come across this problem before and if so, how you handled it? I am sorry if I have offended anyone/horrified them but I really need some advice on this one...thanks.

gagarin Wed 27-Aug-08 17:32:28

Not unusual at all.

You can let him have a go if you want but actually 5 year olds can understand that

Firstly - babies have no teeth - he has

Secondly - only little babies mouths fit on breasts.

So that should get rid of wanting to latch on.

Then - just tell him that when and if you ever express he can taste a bit if he wants to - let hm stick a grubby finger in a tiny amount and taste it.

But the reality will prob be that he has mentioned it. You've said OK. He'll never ask again unless you bring it up! So best not to mention it.

It's like him asking to go to Disneyland - you say distractedly "well, maybe..." - and then don't do it.

Five year olds don't get everything they ask for!

lulumama Wed 27-Aug-08 17:34:42

not sure a five year old would actually be able to latch on if they had not breastfed for years..... you could express some into a cup and let him taste it.. he could watch you feed the baby and then you could express some for him to try...

Mummyfor3 Wed 27-Aug-08 17:35:37

My DSs 1 and 2 (aged 4 and 5 yrs) expressed an interest in breast milk when they saw me feed DS3, but when offered a try they were both horrified!! However, I am proud to say they are now both successfully BFing their own "babies" (a teddy and a puupy) grin.

Personally, I do not think there is anything wrong with letting an older sibling try, but I would not want to feed a 5 year old other than as a demonstration/game. And who knows, by the time the baby appears he may have changed his mind about it.

Cross that bridge if you come to it... and if you decide to let him try, do it away from prying eyes if wider family not supportive.

Equally if you'd rather not, calmly explain that breast milk is for small babies, he had is share (even if he had very little, you obviously had a hard time of it and gave it a good try, no need to explain too much IMO) when he was tiny, and now it is new babies turn.

Would that work for you?

eilidhfi Wed 27-Aug-08 17:39:44

When my mum was bf my younger brothers she used to squirt my sister and I with bm...

I'd forgotten about that and now realise it sounds a bit weird grin

I think you'd be ok to express a little bit into a cup for him when your milk comes in and you're engorged though. AFAIK not expressing until bf has been established is more to do with lo getting used to bottle and upsetting latch rather than supply.

tiktok Wed 27-Aug-08 17:40:43

I am a breastfeeding counsellor, and I have heard of this happening (inc with my older children, when I was pg) - it's not shocking or horrifying at all

Good suggestions here - hope it all works out for you.

becaroo Wed 27-Aug-08 19:15:50

Thanks for all your posts...had to laugh about the squirting bm!! grin

I think if he still insists (as you rightly say he may forget) I will express some and let him try it that way - I will tell him he cant nurse because of his teeth! (ouch!)

Tiktok...I have a feeling you may be hearing from me again in the coming weeks!!!....god knows I think I will need all the help I can get! smile

Mummyfor3 Thu 28-Aug-08 09:57:45

Becaroo, I hope the BFing thing will work out for you.

Just a word of encouragement from somebody who had rubbish, not v successful time Bfing DS1 (poor advice, wrong expectations) and DS2 (v prem, v ill, had only EBM) and who is now v chuffed that DS3 is still exclusively BF at over 5 months. So, it can happen! I think a degree of stubbornness helps, but engage all the support you can get.

Very best of luck!

TheCrackFox Thu 28-Aug-08 10:20:36

Hello, I am not a breastfeeding guru but wanted to add that I FF DS1 for various upsetting reasons. However, I did BF DS2 for one year and had absolutely no problems. You might be as lucky as me this time round.

It is unlikely that your 5 year old would be able to latch on but when your milk is in full swing you could express a little and offer it in a cup. I did this for DS1 as he was really curious and did drink some but never asked again.

Good luck!

Jacanne Thu 28-Aug-08 10:32:36

I'd let him try - he probably won't want to when it comes to it, DD1 (who was BF- though only for 18 months) expressed an interest when I was BF DD2 - when I asked her if she wanted to try some she recoiled with some disgust (which made me a bit sad because she used to love it so). So she settled for helping me - which entailed sitting there with her hand on my breast while I fed (which was a bit irritating but I put up with it).

If he does try he's unlikely to do more than one suck (as self-weaned DD2 does everytime she decideds she might like to try again).

Wishing you lots of luck with BF your new baby when it comes

I had read that you should let them try, so when my ds 4 asked if he could I just said 'of course you can' got a boob out and looked at him expectantly, he took one step closer then did a funny shy smile and said 'please can I have some apple juice instead?'

This is what the book had said was likely to happen, and I admit I was quite relieved that he didn't actually try. But I think it is more about them being able to in theory. ie that a younger sib isn't getting something that they just can't have.

becaroo Thu 28-Aug-08 11:56:13

WTWTW...thats my main fear...that he feels excluded. (and if I am brutally honest with myself I still feel very guilty that I couldnt bf my him - lots of conflicting and upsetting emotions really)

Thanks for all your words of encouragement smile

MarsLady Thu 28-Aug-08 11:58:08

Perfect response! And yes... I've been asked that before. Likewise partners can taste the milk should they desire. It tastes rather sweet! grin

VictorianSqualor Thu 28-Aug-08 12:06:38

DS1(coming up to 4yrs old) asked me if he could try some milk when I started BFing DS2, I said yes, he did it about 4(?) times, and then got bored of it, he just wanted to see if he would be allowed or if he was missing anything I think.

DD(7) also asked and I said ok, but she laughed at me and said 'ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww'.hmm

becaroo Thu 28-Aug-08 12:06:52


My dh already has!! Thats just what the said! He has got a really sweet tooth I odd that I REALLY am not interested in tasting it???

Psychobabble Thu 28-Aug-08 12:20:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

taliac Thu 28-Aug-08 12:23:49

DD (admittedly only 2) often wants to try some.

She has some on her finger, which she licks with a scrunched up yuck face and then says "yummy!"

Its just joining in.

mamaberta Thu 28-Aug-08 12:34:42

DD is younger but when she asks - which she still does occasionally, I say OK and she cuddles up in my arms and sucks her thumb. I have even gone so far as to undo my nursing bra (in private natch!) but she just doesn't remember how to BF and she was breastfed for nearly 2 years. They forget and in your son's case, he never learnt. Telling him no way might foment extra feelings of jealousy towards the new baby which are avoidable.

Good luck, I am a BF peer supporter and know lots of mums who didn't manage to BF DC#1 but then had success with subsequent kids smile

Poohbah Fri 29-Aug-08 20:35:27

I know this thread is dead but really I would like to point out that breastfeeding babies with teeth is fine and normal.

Poohbah Fri 29-Aug-08 20:35:29

I know this thread is dead but really I would like to point out that breastfeeding babies with teeth is fine and normal.

LackaDAISYcal Fri 29-Aug-08 20:52:55

becaroo, I have been wondering the same thing about my DD who will only be 17 months when DC3 comes along and was BF herself till 10 months.

My DS was five when she was born and was fascinated by it all. I asked him if he wanted to try some and he gave me a look of abject horror, like this shock, and then ran from the room. I'd meant in a cup, but he thought I meant for him to suckle grin

And as some encouragement; I struggled to feed DS for five weeks, before expressing for a few days and then putting him onto fulltime bottles. I had similar mixed emotions about it all when I was pregnant with DD, but forewarned is forearmed and all the research I did through MN and other sites helped me work out what had gone wrong the first time. I was quite blase about it still, and thought I'd give it my best shot but that I wouldn't beat myself up about it if it didn't work in the way I had with DS. It was a good start, and although there were a few hurdles that we had to overcome, thanks to the support on MN and in RL we made it work and I only stopped because my milk started drying up in early pregnancy.

And, the experience I've had has made me want to help others. I'm a peer supporter with a local BFing support group and am starting the NCT diploma in BFC in September smile

Good Luck with it smile

becaroo Sat 30-Aug-08 14:09:31

Thanks for your posts....really want it to work this time - hoping I know a bit more and that the baby will be a good weight and healthy too.

Good luck with the course popsy!

Will keep you posted.


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