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Weaning from the breast!

I have an 11 month old baby girl who I have been trying to slowly wean from breast feeding! She has never had a bottle, she would never take it! I dont really know anyone who has breast fed for as long as I have or thats baby doesnt take a bottle at all! Does anyone have any advice thats been through this already?

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Asked by Ericaanne85 at 11:14 PM on Jul. 24, 2010 in Babies (0-12 months)

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Answers (6)
  • I went back to work at about 6 weeks, so DD got breast milk in bottles during the day (I'd pump at work), and breast feed evening and night, as well as first thing in the morning. The sitter told me that around 11-12 months she just really didn't want the bottle any more during the day, so she'd get the milk in a cup. And I stopped pumping around then.

    She continued first thing in the morning feeding, and occasional bed time feeding until 17 months. I needed to get back on some medication that wouldn't have been good for her. My OB just said to cut her off cold turkey. So I did. We had a few rough nights and mornings, but she's doing great. She's been off the boob for almost 1.5 months... still waiting for the milk to dry up completely. :|

    So I'd say go straight to a small cup, and be patient. Good luck!

    Answer by coder_chick at 11:27 PM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • Replace one daily nursing session per week with something else, like milk and a meal. Don't get rid of more than one daily nursing session per week, or you'll run the risk of infection. If you want to do it more slowly than that, then you can switch one nursing session every two weeks, or whatever makes you comfortable.

    I would consult her pedi first, though, and make sure it's ok for her to have milk now, if you want her to have milk. Or you could just wait until she's a year old and not worry about it. Also, you don't have to wean her just because she's approaching her first birthday; I don't know if you have other reasons, but if not, then there's no real reason to wean at all.

    Either way, join the Breastfeeding Moms group. They have weaning resources as well as breastfeeding resources, and tons of moms who have been there. :)

    Answer by DragonRiderMD at 11:30 PM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • hi, good job on you for breastfeeding for so long. my baby is 22 months and i am still breastfeeding. it is hard to wean. i mean i have been working on it for several months. she has never taken a bottle either. i know it is hard, i face it everyday. she demands it. and will cry if i dont let her. : ( so that makes me feel horrible. good luck and give her time. good job momma!!

    Answer by Preggydyke at 11:30 PM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • DD would cry and grab too. She was even dragging the boppy over (she's short/small, so it's even funnier than it sounds). I found it helpful to offer her a snack or a drink, to make sure she wasn't asking for it for thirst/hunger. If that wasn't the issue, I'd give her extra snuggles. I doubt she fully understood me, but I did explain to her why she couldn't nurse any more. And if that still didn't work I'd either let her pout for a few minutes (sometimes it just has to get out of the system) or I'd find something to distract her.

    For me the morning feeding was the hardest to drop. I found that singing her a (made up) wake up song, and tickling her back a bit until she was awake helped the initial waking up part. And I'd offer her water or juice or whatever once she was fully awake.

    Answer by coder_chick at 11:54 PM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • Well - - for starters, weaning at 11 months means that you would need to replace nursing with formula for a month -- because until 1 yr that's where she should be getting most of her nutrients from. Until 1 yr, solids are just for fun.
    Next, there's no set age when you HAVE to wean, but depending on where you look the MINIMUM ages for weaning range from 1-3 years, with nursing continuing past that as long as mom and baby are both still happy with it.
    No matter when you wean, dropping more than 1 nursing session per week is putting yourself at risk for plugged ducts and mastitis, so depending on how often each day she is nursing, it could be a fairly long process. Another option is the "don't offer, don't refuse" method - - don't offer her your breast, but when she asks, don't refuse, and she will gently and gradually wean herself as she is ready.

    Answer by TiffanyMarie80 at 1:55 AM on Jul. 25, 2010

  • Your baby still needs breastmilk to be the main source of nutrition until 12 mo for brain growth. There is no reason to introduce a bottle, its often recommended to stop bottles at 12 mo. You don't have to wean at 12 mo, the World Health Org recommends breastfeeding at least 2 years.

    If your baby loves breastfeeding it may be hard to wean. It's normal for humans to wean at 2.5 years or older. Usually what works best is eliminating one feeding at a time. Toddlers don't need cow's milk, just make up for breastfeeding with more food.


    Answer by Gailll at 6:39 AM on Jul. 25, 2010

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