Breastfeeding and clingy 1 year old!(13 Posts)
Hi, hope someone can help. I have a 12 month old ebf and for the past week or so she just seems to want boob all the time when I'm around her! When she's with her dad or my mum when I'm at work she's fine and will just have a small bottle at dinner time and food/water the rest. When I'm at home though she's always coming to me trying to pull my top and will only stop if I give her a quick feed. Any advice? Thanks
Have you only just gone back to work? It might just be her telling you that she missed you while you were apart
Perhaps a bit of separation anxiety/teeth & looking for comfort? I'm sure my dd had a clingy stage around this time. Do you feed for comfort? Do you have any sort of set times for feeding? If you don't want to feed all the time (totally understandable!), be clear and confident about when she can feed and she will eventually feel your confidence. Offer water and cuddles if you don't want to feed, and be v clear about your boundaries, whatever those are.
No I've been back to work since April so she's used to not being with me everyday, maybe it's just a clingy phase that'll last a couple of weeks?!
She's always fed on demand so I think she's just used to having it as and when she wants ha, it's just been a bit too much the last week or so. She'll play for about 10 mins then be coming over to me for a feed. I think I do just need to be more assertive with her though as I give in to her too easily maybe ( and it's easiest way to quiet her when she's this cranky too)
It's been really hot this week so perhaps she's just thirsty?
Otherwise it could be teething, a bit of separation anxiety, feeling slightly under the weather or just one of those phases they go through.
Yes I feel it could be any of those things lotis! I'm not sure she's too thirsty though as I give her water too and she eats solid food well also, 3 meals a day. It's just driving me a bit mad I feel like I can't get anything done!
In that case I'd say "mummy is busy, you can have boob (or whatever you call it!) once I've finished washing the dishes". And repeat in a calm voice several times when she complains!
I would decide what you are comfortable with and be very clear and confident in telling this is when we'll do this next, so she knows what to expect and you feel comfortable.
I think I did 3 x per day from around 1yr, morning after nap and before bed, and then dropped the after nap, continued with 2 for a long time after. I also stopped nursing for comfort and found other ways to comfort dd aside from bf-ing. I do think that's important. Not saying you should do this, just giving my example.
I do think toddlers need to know the boundaries, though.
Mine is like this at the moment. But then honestly in one year I can count on a hand the few times I've managed to get to 3 or 4 hours between feeds, it's generally an all you can eat buffet (but particularly extreme now). I get setting boundaries but I feel like 12 months is just so young ...? I don't honestly think mine would understand the concept of "later". I try and catch a break on weekends by just having him sit on his Dad's lap or having him be the one playing with him etc as he doesn't tend to want it until he's physically with me.
All things are phases though aren't they?
Originally I thought of feeding for one year only but 1 doesn't even seem that old, they're still basically babies, and I hate the idea of taking it away.
Thanks for the replies. I think one does seem a little young to be setting boundaries too as I don't think she understands saying 'later' so I don't think that will work.
She had got down to about 4 feeds a day before last week so I think it must just be a phase but I'm worried it'll carry on if she knows she can just come up to me and I'll give it to her. I'm not planning on stopping bf anytime soon as I'm planning on doing it until she feels ready to stop.
I maybe need to find other ways to comfort her other than bf though.
At 1 year old she probably doesn't understand later, but distraction with a toy or a snack might
I'm sure it is indeed a phase, so if you are happy to continue to feed on demand then that's great. I only say this as advice to you if you are saying you're no longer happy with the current feeding situation (and as someone who bf well beyond 1).
I think you are under-estimating a NT one year old's ability to understand, when you are clear and consistent and use simple language (unless perhaps they aren't used to you speaking to them this way). You could say, e.g. 'after lunch' or 'before bed' or whenever, rather than just 'later'.
Otherwise, you may be confusing her ability to understand with the fact that she is upset if you refuse. If you change something she is used to (i.e. being fed on demand and/or comfort nursing) then of course she is likely to express herself by crying. It's unexpected for her and a change. It doesn't mean she doesn't understand what you're saying. You can comfort her through that without bf (if that's what you want). There will come a time when bf alone is not enough to comfort an emotional toddler, they need to be able to express their emotions.
Purposefully distracting her without being clear about your bf boundaries is disrespectful IMO. How is she meant to know what is ok? But you set those bf boundaries, it's not for anyone else to tell you what they should be. Do what you feel comfortable with.
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