She is 18 month old and I’ve now started weaning off. It may sound simple…but only parents who have tried hard weaning can understand the pain. The pain when you are out there in a public place and you know the only way to soothe your fussy baby is breastfeed. When you just breastfeed to allow some extra comfort to your little one and not to actually feed her.
Yes, breastfeeding is good…it is good for your baby’s immunity, growth, and even makes your bond stronger. But, for how long? I asked this question to a lot of mothers and got different answers…
Some say their baby lost interest in nursing after 3-4 months…baby-led weaning? Still can’t believe such babies exist! :O
Some just stopped breastfeeding one day after an year and their baby adjusted to change…like really? is that so simple?
Some others tried safe age old technique of using bitter gourd and neem juice and it worked…but how could you do this to your baby?
Knowing all this was not answering my questions and none of them could work. The major question remained…when should I stop breastfeeding and how?
It took me really long to understand that weaning is a mutual thing…and also, that weaning off will not end our intimate bond that we share through nursing.
You can’t force your baby to just stop asking for it but, as you understand their indication to ask for it…you should also try to understand their indications for losing interest in it. When your baby is comfortable with bottle feed or prefers to have a solid meal with you, you need to understand that they are now growing and it’s time to wean.
If your baby is not as old as mine, you can start with limiting your breastfeeding sessions. Every week should be a minus 1 allowing your baby to adjust to the change. Withholding your breast all of a sudden can cause plugged ducts or even breast infection. So stay patient as this will and should take time.
For me, even postponing each of my breastfeeding session helped…I distract her with her favorite toys or engage her in her favorite activity. As I then sense that she can’t wait and is really up for some milk now…I bottle feed her. One session skipped!
There’s no right or wrong way to do it and there are no deadline. Moms even breastfeed their 2-3 year old kids very comfortably. Hats off to such moms! But, if you feel you do not have enough supply and your baby can do well with other nutritious supplements, go for it!
If you have any weaning story to tell or any tips for first time moms like me, please share in the comments section below. Let’s use this platform to share our motherhood experiences.