18 mo cutting back drastically - help!

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2007
18 mo cutting back drastically - help!
2
Thu, 10-01-2009 - 3:33pm
Hello all -


I don't think I've ever posted on this board before, but I lurked a bunch when I was first starting out and always found helpful advice. I hope you can help me now!


My 18 month old daughter, Eleanor, used to be a big time nurser. Sometime around 12-15 months she cut back a ton, usually nursing once at night and about three times a day. That seemed normal and I was fine with that. But then between 15-18 months she cut back even more, sometimes to only once a day, right after waking up in the morning. At this point she only rarely nurses more than twice a day.


Then about a week ago she skipped that one and only dependable nursing session entirely and barely took a sip later on that day. The next day she nursed in the morning but not again, and ever since I'd say her average is 1.5 times a day.


I don't really know what to make of it. I know that toddlers do sometimes wean at this age, but I don't *really* think that's what's going on. IDK. Maybe I'm confusing my wants/goals with reality? I'm leaking again, so I know she's not getting as much as she used to. I'm worried about this being a temporary phase and that by the time she wants to nurse again, I'll have irreversibly lost that milk. I considered pumping to maintain my supply for about two seconds, lol, but decided against that. (But if that is a good option I am not completely opposed to it.) I'm just trying to offer really often, but most of the time she latches on for a second then pops off and runs away.


Is all of this normal and I'm worrying over nothing, or is this a problem?


Some more info: I haven't seen any signs of teething; she's in a good mood otherwise and sleeping well; she appears to be healthy and gaining weight; I don't *think* anything is going with me that would have changed my milk (I got AF back a year ago, not pg, etc.)


Thanks so much for any help!


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Lilypie 2nd Birthday Ticker




iVillage Member
Registered: 07-25-2006
Thu, 10-01-2009 - 10:10pm

Hi there!


Hmmm, the first thing I thought was that you were pg...might just want to double check ;)


Does she have access to other liquids throughout the day like water and juice? If so, you might try limiting those just a bit to see if it causes her to nurse some more?


Other than that, I think you are doing what you should be. Making nursing available, and she's doing what she will. You might see if she's a bit more open to it right before or after sleeping (I know you had earlier) or during a more quiet time when there aren't a bunch of other things to distract her.


You could pump and see if she'll take the milk in a cup for a while...that's at least a way to keep her getting the good antibiodies and nutrition from the milk.


Other than that, though, I think that if she doesn't want to she just won't...kwim? Keep us posted okay? Good luck, mama!

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2007
Fri, 10-16-2009 - 3:41pm
Hi Theresa -


Thank you for your reply! I'm sorry I haven't responded sooner. It looks like my notifications bugged out again.


Eleanor has continued nursing just once a day - after waking up in the morning - ever since, with an occasional very short session mid-morning. If she does try to stop entirely before we're through with the cold/flu season I think I'll take your suggestion and pump for her.


I don't know why I hadn't considered limiting her access to liquids! That's a good idea. We usually just fill her sippy cup (water or soy milk) and let her have constant access to it. A couple times she's even said "no" to me then walked right over to her sippy cup. Maybe if it wasn't available to her she'd choose to nurse instead. I'll give it a go!


I really appreciate the encouragement. It's nice to know that I'm at least not doing anything glaringly wrong here, and it could just be a natural phase or transition for her.


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Lilypie 2nd Birthday Ticker