Everett’s 2nd birthday came and went and our nursing relationship has remained the same.  He is still nursing and I am still letting him.  To be honest I didn’t have plans to wean him at any certain age but it was my goal to make it to 2 with him.  I wouldn’t have kept him from self-weaning earlier than that date and I wasn’t planning on cutting him off on his birthday either.

It isn’t all sunshine and rainbows and “extended” nursing or full-term nursing might not be for you and that is OK.  To be frank I didn’t even know if it would be for me.  I’ve posted before about how uncomfortable I was witnessing a 1.5 year old nurse at one time.  Now here I am nursing a full grown toddler who can operate an iPad and who has been known to pour his own cereal.  At least he hasn’t yet come over and asked for me to top off his bowl because he can’t get to the milk in the fridge.

There are so many benefits to nursing to 2 years.

The biggest benefit is the most obvious one- the chance to bond with your growing child who is on the move 24 hours a day.  I don’t get to just hold and wear my son like I used to when he was a newborn.  He is too busy playing with Transformers for that.  But when it is time for his milk-milk he runs over and puddles into my arms in a sweet, sweaty pile every time.

I am thankful everyday that I still breastfeed my two year old because he has become quite the picky eater.  At least I know he is getting the benefits of breastmilk that is being tailored to his needs and age and this helps me sleep a little better at night.  Considering his lunch of grapes, a few bites of hot dog, and a cookie he stole this is a very good thing.

The most surprising part of this journey has been how nursing helps us with bed time.  I don’t nurse him to sleep anymore and haven’t for quite a while.  He still gets to nurse before bed and it is only one of 3 times he gets to nurse during the day, for the most part.  For this reason he starts asking to go to bed when he is tired!  My son ASKS to be put to bed.  I think any parent will appreciate how monumental that is.  He doesn’t fight bed time, rather he looks forward to it as our special time to cuddle and nurse.  When we are done sometimes he gets upset but that is short lived.  Besides, he now sleeps with his brother so he has a friend to talk to while in bed.

Breastfeeding benefits you too!  The longer your breastfeed the lower your own risk of breast cancer, breastfeeding has also been linked to improved long-term health for mothers, including lower risks of ovarian cancer, osteoporosis, high blood pressure and heart disease.  This applies to having more children as well.  As of now I have breastfed for a total of 45-ish months when you factor in the 18 months I nursed Fletcher.  I am nursing my way to a ripe old age.

Almost every week I am thankful to still be nursing when my little accident prone 2 year old has a spill and needs comforting.  This boy has perma-skinned knees and even after he takes a spill and blood is pouring out of his wounds he can be calmed with a cuddle and nursing.  Would he survive without?  Of course, but he doesn’t have to worry about that just yet.

As the months pile on and we get closer to 2.5 years others are wondering when we will stop.  I don’t know.  I won’t lie and say that I am ready to stop right this minute because I’m not.  If he stopped nursing today I would be sad.  I’m not ready and I’m not “weaned” yet.  I expect that we will have a gradual weaning process like his brother so that when our last session occurs it isn’t painful for either of us.  I do have a 4 day trip planned at the end of the month so there is a chance he will self-wean while I’m away so I’m preparing for that mentally just in case.

Everett is my baby.  He is very likely my very last baby.  The last baby I will ever get to nurse, and diaper, and rock to sleep.  He and his brother will always need me and I’ll always be there, but nothing compares to those sweet moments of silence while he nurses.  His sweaty little head lays in the crook of my arm and he will ask for “meh meh” and I find it hard to say no.  He may be a long legged toddler with scarred knees but he is my baby boy.  I’ll look forward to that eventual full night of sleep, potential overnight trips with my husband, and not wearing a nursing bra.  I am fully aware that all of those things will happen, and soon, but I’m in no rush because I have a full life ahead to enjoy push up bras and only months left to savor those sweet baby snuggles.  They turn into preschoolers too fast.

75 Responses

  1. I love this! When people ask me how long I’m going to breastfeed my daughter I tell them I’ll start adding solids at six months but she’ll continue to get breast milk until she no longer wants it. Like you, I know that when she has my milk she is getting the nutrients her body needs. I’m curious, when you know you’re going to be out of the house and may not be comfortable feeding him in public do you consider pumping and packing a sippy cup? I’m a pretty sensitive person (I won’t even nurse in public without a cover unless I know everyone present is okay with it) and I’ve struggled with the idea of stranger’s judging eyes.

    1. My daughter turned 3 in November. She only nurses right before bedtime and on days when she needs a nap. It is the only way I can get her to go to sleep sometimes. I also have an 18 month old who nurses at nap time, bed time, and once during the night. So that is 5 times I am nursing a day. I never nurse in public anymore. They both will take sippy cups.

    2. We haven’t nursed in public in a long time, mainly because he doesn’t need to nurse frequently at this age. He doesn’t ask, and when he used to as an older toddler I would normally give him water. I think it is about 15 months when I stopped nursing in public with both kids. They can wait and I would rather do it in private at that age because it isn’t as much about nutrition. In rare cases I have done it, including at the beach in the ocean… hah. No one was the wiser.

        1. Let me rephrase that- in public it isn’t an immediate need for nutrition. If he is hungry I will feed him food or given him water if he is thirsty. But overall he is still getting nutrition from the breastmilk he drinks at home. And because he has texture issues with foods I consider that alone well worth continuing. He is still getting plenty from my mill but he doesn’t need milk when we are out to satisfy hunger like an infant so we don’t NIP anymore.
          Please excuse typos and brevity. Sent from my iPhone

  2. elliott just finished weaning around christmas. i had never intended to maintain the nursing relationship for almost four years (gulp!) but that’s how it worked out. like you, he would not ask for it all the time, only occasionally, and almost never in public. but when it did happen, i’d tell him it wasn’t time for nursies, and he would have to wait for bedtime. he was cool with that.

    i’ve breastfed babies for about 80 months. that sounds like a lot, but there were four of them. and now i’m done, fully immersed in preschool/kindergarten/second grader/fourth grader things.

    i miss wearing my babies more than breastfeeding, but in a lucky twist, my brother-in-law and his bride are moving just down the street from us, and are planning to make us some neices and nephews to wear. 🙂

  3. Perfectly said! I’m still nursing my 2.5 year old Everett and I don’t have any plans to stop either. I’ll let him tell me when he’s ready. I know with time he’ll stop asking and at that time I too will be sad. In the meantime, I’ll take every snuggle I can because I know too well how quickly they grow!

  4. i love this article.. my LO just turned 2 and i was in the same mode of thought as you..i was hoping to reach 2 and now that we are there…….well, i am ok with continuing. so few moms (from what i see) write or talk about specifically how often they nurse their 2 year olds, when and where, etc. i hide it, only my SO knows because i just don’t want the judgement. i think it’s so important to talk openly about it to give other moms a sense of normality. i really appreciate that you are able to do it:)

  5. So glad to feel the love and support from other moms online 🙂 Just yesterday my friend (who never nursed 100% and stopped altogether at ~6 months) was trying to convince me that it’s time to stop nursing my 16mo old now that he’s starting to walk. I started this journey feeling that “when he could walk up and ask for it” was the right time to wean… but now I’m happy to continue. My son nurses twice per day during the week and 4-5 times per day on the weekend and I’m good with that. When we get home from daycare every day he ONLY wants to nurse — I can’t even change out of my suit first! How could I arbitrarily cut my son off from what is clearly his favorite activity and gives him closeness with his favorite person in the world?

    As my husband and I start contemplating the timing of #2, all I have stipulated is that I would like a few months when I own my body — no nursing, no pregnancy. But I’m having a very hard time imagining that!

  6. How fantastic! I still nurse my 3 almost 3.5 year old daughter and my almost 1 year old son. I don’t know when she will self wean and I’m not too worried about it. People are quote surprised when they realize she still nurses. I had one breastfeeding mom say to me, “We’ll I’ve read that your milk is still good at 3 years so that’s ok.” I thought to myself… How could it “go bad???”.

  7. If there was anything I never imagined I would do, it would be breastfeeding for longer than 1 year, let alone 2. I think a lot of us end up doing it because there’s really no reason to stop and honestly, I don’t know how moms do it when they’re weaned at 2, I know they manage to get their toddlers to sleep and comfort them, but breastfeeding makes everything easier. My goal with my first was 6 months, I did it for 29. I’ve been doing it for 4 months with my second and counting. Beautiful article

  8. Beautiful, moving post-thanks for sharing it, Kim. My youngest is 3 and a half and he is not a soft ‘baby’ anymore- it just happened over the last couple of months. I guess they all have to grow but it’s also a little bit sad! I miss him being all cuddly and soft! Enjoy your baby boy!

  9. I can’t tell you how many times I thought we were nearly done nursing, but today I am 37 weeks pregnant and still nursing my almost 3 1/2 year old. Like you said, I didn’t have a plan as to what I wanted to do, other than reach 2 years. Now, we play it by ear. There are days I really want to stop, but there are other days, like today, when he isn’t feeling well and I can nurse him and make us both feel better. It’s a gift, and it’s a short-lived season of our lives, so for every reason you listed above, I still nurse him. And soon, I’ll probably nurse him side by side with his new sister! Thanks for your post.

  10. What a beautiful post! I stopped breastfeeding when my daughter was 7 months due to a variety of reasons and regret it everyday. I wish I had pushed through that tough month and realized it would get better. I think mamas like you are a blessing, it’s all about your family and what works and is important to you. I am hopeful to have a more successful breastfeeding experience with my next child and stories like yours help me know it’s possible

  11. I love this! Makes me teary-eyed as my 16 month old daughter falls aleep next to me. We just nurse once a day now- just before bed. I’m not ready to give it up either. It’s such a special bonding time. I NEVER thought I would nurse this long but we are and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Over the past few months your blog has helped me to feel more comfortable with my decision to nurse past one year when people look at me like im crazy, and the doctors tell me “oh youll be done doing that by the time you come back” so thank you for posting. You’ve helped remind me that I know what is best for my daughter.

  12. It is clear through your writing that you have a very close and special relationship with your son. He is lucky to have a mother who is so in tune with his needs and development.

    My husband and I have not yet been blessed with a baby so it is hard for me to decide where I stand with extended breast feeding. I have close friends on either side of the fence that are passionate about their beliefs. In some ways I register with both sides, those uncomfortable with breast feeding past a year and those who strongly believe in self-weaning (at whatever age).

    I guess my one question is, where is the “line” that divides when you are doing it for the love, health, and benefit of your baby and when you are doing it for you, because you can’t let go? Are you “arresting” this development for your own benefit because, as you say, he is your last baby and last opportunity to bond in this way? Is it less special to cuddle and love him without breast feeding? I’m not asking to be judgmental, I hope you understand that. I guess I am asking to help affirm my own inner battle of “when is the right time”.

    1. Jennifer, to answer one of your questions, no, it doesn’t “arrest” the development of a child to breastfeed to 2 years old or even longer. Studies are actually showing that breastfed babies are smarter, healthier, and more emotionally developed than their formula-fed counterparts. (Same with unvaccinated and uncircumcised children, but those are other subjects.) The rule used to be to breastfeed until 1 year old and now studies show that 2 is the magic number. The human child can breastfeed much longer, and in many societies they do. It’s up to you what to do with your own child. And for any mother who can’t or chooses not to breastfeed, please always consider using donated breast milk from your local breast milk bank before considering formula. (And stay away from rice syrup because it has high levels of arsenic in it.) Best wishes!

      1. It is difficult to get donor milk sometimes. I was unable to get it. Even though for some reason I wasn’t producing enough and my babe was failing to thrive, I didn’t qualify for milk from the nearest banks because my baby wasn’t allergic to formula. The banks required a prescription for donor milk and a demonstrated “medical need.” :-/

          1. I second that. This is peer milk sharing so it is mother to mother. I’ve donated before and it is wonderful to see milk not go ot waste and instead be used for babies who need it.

    2. You can’t do it “for you” because you can’t make a child nurse. It is always the child’s choice. (My children decided to stop around 4 years, 2 years, and 3 years respectively.)

    3. Hi Jennifer, the great news is that I know now there’s no need to decide in advance. Before having a baby I sort of imagined that one day, around a year old, he would wake up a toddler and that would be it. He would walk, he would talk, and his dairy would come from a farm. I now realize that the transition is slower and more blurred than you can possibly imagine! There are lots of days when my 16mo old will go from tantruming like a toddler to sleepy snuggled on my shoulder like a newborn in two minutes… and before I know it, Captain Destructo is back. I won’t make any claims that my son is smarter or more emotionally developed because I’ve continued nursing past a year, but I will say that it *seems* to lessen the daycare-related illnesses and most importantly IT MAKES HIM VERY HAPPY!

    4. Jennifer, when I had my first baby, I had a plan. I was going to do what all my family did. It took him 3 days to make me realize my plan was not taking place. Most decisions have been taken at the moment and following my guts. I ended up nursing that baby for 29 months when I had “planned” on 6. He is happy, healthy and very smart. Just take things one day at a time and go with whatever works best for both of you. Best wishes for when you get this amazing blessing.

    5. I think if you prevent your child from naturally weaning for your own benefit, even if that benefit is your love of that time together, then that would be selfish and “wrong.” He hasn’t shown signs of wanting to wean or I would follow his lead. In many ways life would be easier but again, others wouldn’t like naps and bedtime.

      I understand that people are uncomfortable seeing older children nursing in public. This is one (not the only) reason I stopped NIP with both before they were older. If I myself was made uncomfortable seeing toddlers and older children nurse I can only imagine how others must feel. And even though I whole heartedly support “extended” nursing I also think people have the right to feel that way. It isn’t seen in public often in our society. Some people would say that is reason to do it more but I peraonlly am not comfortable “rocking the boat” in that way to prove a point. And as brazen as I like to think I am I am not sure how I would react when confronted either.

      I hope that answers your question. When you have your beautiful baby you will know what is right for you and them and the process will evolve naturally into what it is meant to be.

      1. Read 1 Samuel 1. Hannah nursed Samuel until he was 3. Throughout the Bible, women nursed for years. Hope this helps!

      2. Completely incorrect, my baby got her first tooth at 2 months, surely that is to young to wean or eat real food

  13. I’m so happy I got to read your post it reminds me it’s ok my 14mo old is still breastfeeding and to enjoy it rather then stress it.

  14. I am also still nursing an almost 2 year old but I canned the nursing bras last year. Just pull yourself over the bra! Nursing bras are terrible under clothes and probably cause some women to stop nursing!

  15. I NEEDED this post. My daughter is thisclose to 2 1/2 and nowhere near weaning. I have started to feel pressure to wean and have let it get to me a little. Instead I will try to focus on my daughter and her needs. Thank you so much for this lovely (and timely) post.

    1. I think it gets to all of us. Being touched out is something I commonly deal with and after my 2 kids crawl all over and my youngest is nursing and pinching and rubbing it can be very hard. I will something shut down and demand alone time with a video game or TV which leaves my husband alone too. But again, the span of time when that is an issue compared to when it won’t be is insignificant. I’ll deal with those moments and recover in order to have the sweet moments too. <3

  16. LOVE this – my goal was to breastfeed for 6 months – i just weaned my son on January 1st, one month shy of his 3rd birthday – he was my second nursling (i nursed his older sister til she was 3, tandem nursing a year of that) – in total, i nursed non-stop for 59 months – if you’d told me when i was pregnant that i would become an “extended” breastfeeding mama, i would have also sold you swamp land in Idaho – at times breastfeeding was physically and mentally exhausting – but it was also an amazing experience and i don’t regret one minute – you’ll know when you’re ready, but until then “you go mama!!!”

  17. Oh gosh. This was so incredibly sweet and I can totally relate. Before my first son I didn’t think babies nursed longer than a few months. Now I’ve been nursing him for twenty months, through a pregnancy and arrival of a little brother. I am now that mom who tandem nurses a toddler on one side and a newborn on the other. Thank you for writing this, I really enjoyed reading it.

  18. Beautiful. I breastfed my now almost 2 year old son for only 6 months (I had production issues that could not be “fixed”) and I wish every day I could have gone longer. I would love to be able to cuddle up and nurse my big boy now-enjoy every minute or it…and the new push up bras when the time comes 😉

  19. I breastfed my first son until 3 years and some months- I forget. Our breastfeeding relationship became difficult when I started working. Once he started preschool, he was too busy and tired to nurse, he just did not want to anymore. Once a day became once a week. Then he asked for no more. As easy as my milk came it went. It helped with many temper tantrums, bed time and even potty training. I used my milk for scrapes, ear and eye infections- even for some of my skin care. Now with my second son I’m still breastfeeding him at 4 months but our breastfeeding relationship is totally different- he now prefers to nurse laying down in the bed and not anywhere else. I’m slowly trying to make him nurse on my lap while he’s wide awake- it’s a work in progress. I know when I get there it’ll be smooth sailing until he self weans…I never really understood extended breastfeeding until it happened with me.

  20. A lovely post. I bf my daughter until she was 2 1/2, towards the end it was just bedtime and morning, but when we went on holiday and our routine was disturbed she just ‘forgot’ and by the time we got home she was weaned. I’m glad it was her decision because I do think the longer you continue, the harder it is to stop. I think by the time she did stop I was truly ready and we were both happy.

  21. I loved nursing my son until he was 2 1/2! Then I became pregnant with number 2 and stopped producing. I let him dry nurse for a couple of months but it was just starting to become uncomfortable for me so I forced him to wean 🙁 It has been a couple of months now and he still asks about his booboos every day. I told him if he is a really good big brother that maybe this baby will share 🙂

  22. I nursed my son for 22mo but by then I was ready to be done. My family still more than 2 years after he was weaned talks about how I did it for too long. After 6 months they were saying it’s gross and he is too big! It was so frustrating. I heard all the time “so and ao suggests breastfeeding til 6 mo” finally I would say things like yes they recommend a MINIMUM of 6mo but say babies still benefit from it much longer, why would I want to give my baby the minimum if I can do more than that?

    1. These comments about Teeth are SO ridiculous: heard of ‘milk teeth’ y’all? If you go by teeth then our LOs are meant to nurse until 7! I personally don’t even consider 3x a day @ 2.5 really that extended, anthropologically it is on the early side of normal. My goal has always been @ least 3 years & that goal is based on the science.

  23. why do people ask when does it stop being about the child and becomes the moms “obsession” really? think about it. what he wants to wean and doesnt show interest so i know she is smashing a boob in his face an forcing him to nurse! yeah thats how we know! come on if he still asks for it, shows interest, and enjoys it then it must be his desire to feel that nurturing. we all know you cant force it. can you imagine trying to force a two year old? hahahhahaha please think a little more deeply next time before asking those silly questions

  24. Love this! Thank you for speaking up about extended breastfeeding. I also intend to let my lo self wean. Since she is barely two and only nursing 2-3 times a day it might be a lot sooner than 2 years, but if she wants to continue to 2 years or even further that is ok with me. I am expecting a 2nd and I know that will complicate things, but I look forward to having that special time just the two of us at least a couple of times each day! Your post was beautiful!

  25. This was amazing to read. I wish everyone could have the bond that you get when you nurse a child. Nothing can compare. I’m going to let my daughter self-wean when she’s ready, but hopefully she waits until I’m ready, too.

  26. Lovely reflection. When reading this it brought to memory how westernized we have made breastfeeding. In some Middle Eastern as well as many other Countries in years past they nursed their babies until they were 5. This was a common practice, especially in poor families to help give the children nutrition. I have found it interesting over the years that people who are specialists tell us when and how long we should nurse our children.As mothers we have a natural instinct with each child to know what their personal needs are. Some kids wean early, some want to nurse longer. This was our God given right, to nurse our children without anyone telling us what the “right amount of time” is. Some children need the comfort and closeness of their mother for a longer period of time. Some need it for health reasons. One of my children weaned at 11 months by just stopping and wanting a cup from that moment on, the other wanted more security and nursed until 2.5 years. Both are very wonderful and secure chilren. I can only encourage all Moms to listen to the inner connection God has given you with your children and enjoy motherhood. If we were supposed to give them a bottle, we wouldnt have been given breasts and milk that comes in after childbirth to feed them. It is not only healthy for them, but God knew what those babies needed in being loved, cuddled, nurtured and close to their mothers heart beat to know true love and security. Motherly love comes from our heart and it can be felt by our children who are comforted by our heartbeat and the love that flows when they are close to us in our arms.

  27. My son was 18 months or so when he weaned himself on his own. Shortly after his sister was born (right before his second b-day) he wanted to breastfeed again. It was very difficult to tell him no, but I stood firm because I worried he wouldn’t wean himself properly again and I was concerned about him trying to push his sister out of the way. Sometimes I worry that I made the wrong decision, because I fully support that the World Health Organization says children can and should be breastfed up to 3 years of age.

    He weaned himself though, and I didn’t want him reattaching just as a way to get attention. Now (5 months later) he’s mostly okay with not nursing, but he still wants to play with mama’s boobies.

  28. What a beautiful story. Thank you!

    My 2.5 year old still nurses occasionally though I’m honestly not sure how much is in there as I feel pretty much “empty.” I could give a rats @ss whether or not it’s socially acceptable or makes some people uncomfortable. What matters is…well…my husband and I are smart but nowhere near his level of early intelligence … I’m convinced this is partly due to his extended breastfeeding, whole foods and organic diet, and us being very careful to limit neurotoxins as much as possible.

  29. So sweet. Lovely post and such a lovely, true sentiment. My younger son breastfed for a long, long time. I didn’t intend it to be that way. I figured we would reach a point where I decided he was too old and we just needed to be done. And then it didn’t happen. So it just….. kept going. Until it didn’t. I’m glad it was a gradual process because I never mourned the loss of that relationship and he never had any difficulty losing something he relied on.

  30. Beautiful story. I was just relishing here too about how blessed I’ve been to have been able to nurse both of my girls until after their second birthdays. My second (and last) baby and I have been “discussing” the idea of her not having mommy milk during the night anymore. (Just before bed, in the morning and before nap.) One night about 10 days ago, she stopped sitting or standing up when she’d call me at her usual 2 or 3 am mommy milk time. She was still comfy in her blankies, so rather than yoink her out to nurse her, I just rubbed her back and talked to her about it being time for sleep. It worked without tears 🙂 -A little “she doesn’t need me anymore” anguish on my part, but mostly happiness for her to be finding her way. A few nights later, and she’s not calling for me, and my husband and I are getting from 8:00 at night until 7:30 am to have some much needed alone time and SLEEP…beautiful, wonderful sleep. I am excited for all of the moms out there who are “getting enough”. It’s incredible what a good night’s sleep can do. Goodnight 🙂

  31. Help! My first baby is 5 months old. I want to continue breast feeding, but she recently got teeth and she keeps biting me! How do I teach a 5 month old not to bite?! I have endured a very challenging road to breastfeed this child. I have done so gladly, because I believe strongly in breastfeeding. However, this biting thing is a whole new ball game. How do I teach her to stop?!

    1. Jennifer, try pushing your baby’s nose into your breast when they bite. Just for a quick moment. They will instinctively pull back and eventually learn that lesson not to bite. If you aren;t comfortable with that method, which is admittedly a little scary, you can also remove them (try unlatching by putting a pinky in their mouth, and not allow them to nurse for a while. Each time they bite simpley remove them and refuse to re-latch. There are more ideas on kellymom.com too about biting. It will get better and it is worth trying to solve for sure!

  32. Love it! I too nurse my 2 year old, as well as my baby boy. I was sure my daughter had weaned, and then, after a couple months, she suddenly wants to nurse all the time. Guess what? I’m happy about it! She’s so stinking cute! I love that picture. It’s beautiful and something you will always remember.

  33. This is so lovely it actually brought a tear to my eyes. You have described the natural nursing relationship so beautifully. I breastfed my son until he self-weaned at 11 1/2 months and I can’t wait to breastfeed my new baby when it arrives (any day now!) until he or she self-weans. I hope you both continue to enjoy this lovely relationship 🙂

  34. My son weaned himself before one year, one day he wouldn’t get into a good position and he bit me, we were both done at that point, both exasperated with each other, lol. He never wanted it again… With my daughter I expected the same, but she is so much different than him. She is now almost 17 months old and though we have gone down to just a few feedings in between real food, she still demands “aboobaboobabooba”(I used to ask if she wanted a boob), a few times a day, lol. I want her to wean on her own, even though I do feel strange telling people I still breast feed her. She still wants it, so I still give it.

  35. I am nursing my 2 1/2 year old daughter first thing in the morning, at nap (or when I get home from work) and at bedtime. She is a funny, chatty and adventureous little one and she loves apples, broccoli and chocolate chip cookies. But she also loves nummies – and they are a wonderful, evolving part of our relationship. She and I talk about a day coming when we won’t have nummies anymore, but we will still snuggle and cuddle and play… She says she is okay with that but when she is in my arms in bed and sighs, “I love your nummies” I know that time has not yet come.
    Thank you for sharing this wonderful tribute to your relationship with your son. It brought tears to my eyes. My little girl is the only child I will have, and she and I are both enjoying every single second.

  36. Why are all these posts affirming? Are the ones to the contrary being deleted? I’ll know in a few minutes, I guess. There is a point where the divine meets with the ridiculous. There is a very good reason God gives our children teeth when He does. btw, those teeth made me realize in a hurry that breastfeeding was no longer going to be “on the table”!

    1. Every other mammal on the face of the planet nurses until about the time their baby teeth start to fall out and their adult teeth come in. Humans have partially snubbed noses during the early part of their childhood in order to nurse more easily. That doesn’t go away until about preschool age. Also, my oldest got teeth at 3 months. My youngest got teeth at 9 months. A friend of mine’s baby isn’t even 2 months yet and is getting her first tooth. Do you really think that God gave that baby teeth so that her mother could wean her right now? I understand you are uncomfortable, but you do not need to judge others for something that is natural and normal to the majority of the world.

    2. I haven’t deleted a single comment. Unlike you, everyone has been supportive and knows the truth that babies aren’t meant to be weaned just because they had teeth. And I guarantee you if there was a Jesus he was breastfed far past the age of having teeth as would have been historically accurate. God would have wanted his son to eat the best food possible.

  37. I breast fed to 50 months. Had no plans to stop but would never have thought that I would breast feed until he was over four. It just happened naturally. I had people telling me to stop. As a matter of fact, I just didn’t tell my family and his dad had been out of his life. I didn’t need to hear the comments. Go as long as it feels natural. That’s what I did.

  38. When it comes to parenting…parenting has more to do with basic human instinct then you may think. Parents & especially children’s behaviours directly link to basic human instinct, so I tend to try and look at things from that perspective & the best way of doing that is thinking back to before civilization & what parenting would be like from any aspect. I am sure back then Mothers never stopped breastfeeding. Why would they? Its constant nutrition for their young back when what you ate is what you could find/kill, when your next meal was never guaranteed and receiving it was much more difficult then visiting your local grocer. It is as natural as it gets if you really think about it. Anyone who says otherwise needs to really think about it. We were meant to breastfeed as long as possible. Not only for the nutritional value but as part as our most basic survival instinct for ourselves and our children.

    However, we are civilized & as you said, it is not for everyone but im just trying to make a point that anyone who argues that you should/need to stop earlier or that its not ‘normal’ or natural. To each his own but its just how I look at things.

  39. Weaned my last baby just before his third birthday. I was so glad to be able to talk to him about why it was time to let it go (it was making me physically uncomfortable by that point) and he agreed that it was time, and said that now that he was a big boy he was ready but a bit sad–as was I. He still love his snuggles, and when he sees another baby nursing he tells me “that baby’s eating!” I know our nursing journey was perfect for us, as yours will be for you. I wish you all the best.

  40. Wow – I felt like you were writing about my life for a minute there,.. I have twin 2 year old boys that are still nursing and they are my last babies. Loved this – thank you for sharing. And I wanted to also reassure you that your 4-day trip certainly doesn’t mean the end of your nursing relationship. I’ve gone on 2 ‘long-weekend’ type trips with hubby while nursing my older twin boys and both times they’ve picked right up where we left off when I come back 🙂 Enjoy the rest of your milk-milk times with your son, and I hope you are weaned gently when the time is right xo

  41. my 1st weaned at 2 1/2 and my second at 3. It was thier desicion. We were ok with it. My parents not so much. I just didn’t share my nursing with them. I had dozens of friends who were like me letting the child choose. There are things I regret in my parenting but holding my child close to me and giving him the thing that brought him comfort, love, reassurance and proper nutrition was not one of them. My youngest is 26 years old.

  42. I am amazed how positive all these comments were! I actually enjoyed reading them!

    I have a question that I’ve not seen discussed yet here or elsewhere. I have a 7 month old who is exclusively breastfed, and I am planning to let her self-wean, but in the mean time can someone share what the transition from her eating every 2-3 hours (even at night) to eventually eating 2-3 times a day looks like? Because most people assume introducing solids means ending nursing, I am lost on what the transition looks like.

    So what happens between letting her taste and experience some solids and eating actual solid meals and what does breastfeeding look like during that process?

    1. For us, my daughter just naturally transitioned to it slowly on her own. She was still nursing 10 times a day at a year, nightweaned herself at 18 months, started STTN on her own, and slowly just started asking less and less. At 3, she still nurses about 4-5 times a day. If I were interested in weaning, I know she could easily move down to 2-3. Right now, I just nurse her when she asks.

  43. I love this post. I too used to be uncomfortable with people nursing older babies. Now here I am still nursing my 25 month old. She only nurses before bed for the most part, but will ask more often when I am home from work on the weekends. I think it’s mostly a comfort thing for her, but I’m not going to make her stop. She will stop when she’s ready.

  44. I never “planned” on anything with breastfeeding, just let it takes it’s natural course. I also never imagined either of my children would still want it at age 5, but they did…. People frowned upon it, thinking it was for “me”. I was definitely ready to move on, but clearly, they had their own timeline. Hardest part was nursing the 2 yr. old while pregnant…. it was excruciatingly painful, but I couldn’t take it away from her, she still had to have it…..so I endured. One of the many sacrifices we make for the betterment of our children.

  45. Absolutely beautiful. My daughter and I are at 16 months now, and she’s showing absolutely no signs of interest in weaning. I’m only allowing her two times a day (morning, right after waking up, which she does for about 40 mins!, and evening before bed, only about 5-10 mins, although she’d do it throughout the day if I let her). Not sure what steps I’ll take if she never self-weans. But I can’t deny her something she loves (and I love it too).

  46. This is fascinating, thank you for the interesting read about your personal story with your son. I’m seriously reading up on every line of thought when it comes to breastfeeding out of curiosity.

  47. My daughter just turned two and still wants “boobies” all the time!! It’s not that she wants to comfort nurse…it’s the playing with my opposite nipple ..twisting it pinching rubbing her palm across it. I can’t stand it!! If I don’t let her she cries. It’s seems that it’s part of the comfort she wants. Also she needs both boobs hanging fully out and needs to switch between them over and over. It’s exhausting I truly can’t stand it anymore..but I don’t know how to stop.

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