After a full year of breastfeeding my toddler even after joining back work. I was finally done wearing nursing tops and bringing my pump to work every day.
So I decided to wean my breastfed toddler and worked on the plan.
Image Courtesy : Pinterest
Well!! Weaning is a bittersweet moment because it gave me a chance to bond with my baby the way no one else ever can and it’s also those things which if you stop can’t go back once again to start. Once done, it’s done.
Still , after a whole year ,I look forward to having others feed my baby instead of being the only one who could.
But how do you stop doing something which you have been doing for months and your baby is so much accustomed to .I also wondered how my body would react to the change.
Plan of action!!!
I gave myself 6 weeks to completely wean off Nirvik! I decided to implement phases and not move to the new one until I finish the first phase.
- First I decided to remove the random feeds which didn’t follow a pattern and were just for fun…Trust me phasing out those extra sessions were simple as a pie.
- Then I removed the morning feed. My mom offered him a cup of water along with a fruit maybe a banana or applesauce and that did the trick.
- Remove the feeds after coming back from work. I entered the house and started hugging, kissing him and gave him lots of finger food like carrot or a muffin and he would enjoy the excitement of eating them. Then I would play along, though sometimes he asked for the feed which I didn’t stop so the process was very gradual.
- Then remove the last favourite feed which is the night time comfort feed, I knew that feed would be the toughest to remove. During these times my husband played an important role. He read him books, offered him a pacifier, Sippy cup of water. He gave him the extra love and sometimes when it was absolutely impossible to handle then I offered to help with lots of warm hugs kisses and extra mommy love instead of nursing. He fussed and let me know he wanted to nurse those days were terrible. Sometimes I gave into the fussing but other times I was strong enough and the days just passed.
Image Courtesy : istockphoto.com
I had decided to be flexible and go slow. Give an extra special attention to his needs and take extra care of him. Help my child adjust peacefully through these changes.
After 4 weeks I had finally reached a point where he was feeding only in the night and I knew this will be toughest one to remove.
There were days when he would cry looking at me the moment I reached home. He would start tearing off my clothes but now he just smiles at me and asks for a hug and then again goes back playing with his blocks or whatever he was doing!!! Weaning a breastfed toddler is tougher than a bottlefed baby!!!
This is a great video which talks about the advantages of Breastfeeding and why it is beneficial not only to the child but also to the nursing moms. Breastfed children are intelligent, healthy and smart.But weaning a breastfed toddler is important too and a big milestone.
Some Simple Tips from my personal experience
- It usually takes about a week or two to wean off your toddler but you can wish to go slow and make it a month long process like I did.
- Talk about it first. Discuss weaning two days before you actually plan to wean and repeat it daily for a few days.
- Try mixing cow’s milk with breast milk and slowly using less breast milk and more cow’s milk (or offer yogurt, cheese, etc… or even coconut or almost milk, instead of milk – just check with your doctor first).
- Don’t offer the breast, but don’t refuse your child from breastfeeding, during the early stages.
- Introduce new rules, like not breastfeeding outside of the home, as a way to begin weaning.
- Shorten each nursing session each day, until you are at a minute each, then go to 30 seconds, then stop.
- If trying to night-wean, have Dad go in at night and be the comforter, during the night time weaning process.
- Try pumping and offering your milk in a cup and offer it with a straw.
- If your child wants to nurse at the same time every day (example: 10:00 am), plan an outing or activity for that time.
- Try to plan for your last nursing schedule. This can be very hard, to finally let go of that last feeding. It is up to you when you want to eliminate it or if you want your child to stop on their own.
Foods that helped me wean off my child
- I tried offering him bubble milk which I made from cow milk and then churning it out in the espresso he loved it!!!
- He also loved the boiled apple sauce and that was his food in the afternoon when he loved having the afternoon nap feed.
- My mother made this tangy Cerelac which my baby absolutely loved it.
- I also tried offering him different snacks like carrots or blueberries sometimes homemade muffins.
- He absolutely loved banana which was his morning food.
- I also started giving him lots of finger foods which he enjoyed during the evening and helped cut off the evening feeds.
Image Courtesy : Cenovis
Weaning from breastfeeding can feel bittersweet. You are finding more time for yourself, but you’re also saying goodbye to a stage in your life. Everything has its pros and cons. The best part though? Weaning doesn’t mean you can’t bond with your baby anymore. You’ll just find new and different ways to spend time together.
This post was originally written here by me.
How was weaning your toddler? If you are in that stage and if my post helped you do share in the comments below 🙂
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