A Breastfeeding Toddler
is Totally Normal!
A breastfeeding toddler can be fun and sometimes not so fun when it comes to breastfeeding.
It’s completely normal to breastfeed your toddler, just in case you were wondering. You’d be surprised to know the number of moms that are still breastfeeding older children.
Although in the Western society, it’s not always accepted as the norm.
The breast has been sexualized so much to the point where if people see you nursing your toddler, they are disgusted.
That’s why you don’t see as many moms breastfeeding toddlers in public. Which is a shame.
Some of the fun parts when breastfeeding older children are:
• Seeing how happy they are when they get to nurse. There is obviously something else going on here besides just getting nutrition. There is some type of bonding that’s happening and now your toddler can express his gratitude a lot better than he could as a baby.
Sometimes when my breastfeeding toddler asks to nurse (he says “I wanna nur nur”), when I say okay and start preparing myself to pick him up to nurse, he starts jumping around in circles dancing and singing to show how happy he is!
• Watching them twist and turn their body in different positions to play while still nursing. Although this can be irritating at times when you just want them to nurse and be done. The fun part is seeing them try to reach something or play or turn their head to look at something or watch T.V., all while still holding the nipple in their mouth. Can they reach it? It kind of turns into a game!
• Holding a conversation with them while nursing. You can already barely understand your toddler as it is, but they don’t care, they’ll still hold a conversation with you with the nipple in their mouth. “Say one”. “Hello”. It’s so funny!
• You can tell them to wait to nurse if you’re not ready. A toddler is willing to wait until you get done doing what you’re doing, especially if you distract him with something else.
• They say they’re done nursing. Sometimes when my son is done nursing he’ll say “done” or “nah” and then pulls my shirt down to cover my breast.
• Being able to easily comfort them when they’re afraid, fall down, or hurt themselves. Of course a hug will do, but a breastfeeding toddler gets the ultimate comfort when a mom breastfeeds him during these times.
You’re comforting him in a way that only you can, something they’ve become used to and familiar with since the beginning. Not to mention being able to still nourish him when he’s sick and doesn’t want anything else to eat.
• When they become picky with the breast. It’s funny when I offer my son one breast to nurse on and he insist on taking the other one instead. What’s so great about the other one at that point in time, I have no idea!
And of course there are times when you wished your child just didn’t want to nurse at this particular time. These are the not so fun times when breastfeeding older children
• When they get aggressive when you say no, not right now. Especially when you’re in public. Sometimes a toddler will just come and pull your breast out, and when you say you don’t want to nurse right now, they can get very aggressive to the point of hitting you and falling out crying.
If you don’t want to nurse your toddler in public, you have to know their reactions and know how to deal with them at home before you go out, that way you'll have more control over the situation when you’re away from home.
• Sometimes having to reteach the basics of latching on. These are the times when they latch on and you feel something sharp on your breast, which turns out to be their teeth.
And this happened only because they’re a pro at breastfeeding now, so they don’t need to open their mouth wide anymore in order to get the whole thing in, which in turn hurts you! This is when you have to tell them to let go and open their mouth wide this time.
• The looks and comments you will get from strangers and probably relatives (including spouse). If you thought you received negative looks and comments when you were breastfeeding your baby, try breastfeeding a toddler in front of everyone. You won’t hear the end of it from your relatives!
One of my cousins nursed her daughter until she was 4 ½. To this day, everyone in the family still calls her “titty baby”, and she’s 13 years old!
And if your spouse feels like your toddler is “too old” to be still nursing, you will get “dirty” looks in your own home.
When I started weaning my first son when he was two years old, my husband was right there to make sure it happened. I tried to explain to him that it was a gradual process, because he wanted the child to stop nursing the moment he turned two!
He got on our son so much about nursing that I just started secretly nursing him when he wasn’t around.
I know, horrible. But that was the only way I could do it without hearing his mouth about it.
As you can see, a breastfeeding toddler isn’t so bad. They have their moments just like everyone else, and can be fun and entertaining in more ways than one.
So if you have any doubts about breastfeeding older children, give it a try! You might have more fun than you imagined!
How long is too long?
We know that many moms breastfeed their toddler, but how long is too long? 2 years? 3 years?, 4, 5, 6! How long is too long?
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