Boys BFed longer than girls?

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-16-2009
Boys BFed longer than girls?
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Mon, 08-30-2010 - 11:39pm
In general, thinking about the children you have known who were BF past a year - would you say that boys tend to be BF longer than girls - girls tend to be BF longer than boys - or is it fairly even split in your experience?



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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-24-2008
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 1:45am

I don't think there is any way to reliably estimate it since it'd be hard to control for other factors that affect nursing duration. My gut would say they get nursed the same, but I can't prove that looking the people I know. For example, my sister nursed her daughter longer than her son, but her son came second, and maybe first babies tend to be nursed for different durations than second babies. My friend nursed her daughter longer, but that's because the daughter was her last baby (according to my friend).

Even if I just looked at myself, my girls on average were nursed 15.25 month, my boy 7.5 months. So you'd say girls are nursed longer IME. But really it's that without medical problems, the child was nursed almost to the second year, with medical problems boys and girls alike were weaned early. Really there's no gender difference, but it sure looks like one initially.

If I expand that sample and include all 6 kids living in my home, the girls were nursed on average 15.25 months, the boys were nursed a much lower 3.75 months on average. But now the sample is mucked up by having two different mothers both who weaned at radically different times for a variety of reasons, and one EN'd girl really skewing the sample.

The idea is interesting though, and at least one group concludes that nursing boys longer has a big impact on differences in survival rates between boys and girls. And they might be onto something in cultures with a preference for one gender over the other: http://messageboards.ivillage.com/n/mb/message.asp?webtag=iv-psbfvbottle&msg=8417.1&ctx=16384

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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-16-2010
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 9:37am

My son BFed longer than my daughter, but that's only because my daughter isn't done yet...I'll let you know, but it might be a couple years. ;-)


The only other XBFers I know IRL only have boys.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-16-2009
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 11:10am

Since this is about your personal experience - there is no right or wrong answer - it's just what you have observed in your own little world. I just wondered what people are noticing - sparked by a post in a different thread.

When you are looking around at the people you know - it's best to exclude any child who BF for less than a year - so just looking at those over 1 year old.

In my experience - let's see, two boys of my own who BF for a year, my sister's girl - 5 for over a year. Friends & LLL members - mostly girls. I think, for the most part, I haven't met a lot of boys who BF full-term, but when I did then they all BF for longer than the girls I knew who BF past one year.



~*~ Catherine, mom to three grown men - Jason, Michael & Joshua and Granma to Christopher & Leia.


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~*~ Catherine, mom to three grown men - Jason, Michael & Joshua and Granma to Christopher & Leia.


iVillage Member
Registered: 11-04-2009
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 11:20am

It is what I have noticed in my experience and it is what I expected to happen, I am not surprised that I actually have to encourage my son to wean and I am having a battle because the situations I know the girls seem to wean faster while the boys put up a fight and the mothers give in for longer.

Lee

Lee

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-20-2008
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 11:56am

My experience with my own children...well, the one who has nursed the longest is a girl, for 34 months.

Robynne mama to Emily (3/26/99), Allison (5/13/02)

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-29-2005
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 12:32pm

I was going to suggest looking specifically at children weaned beyond a year b/c there are a lot of reasons for early weaning and they're likely not gender related ;)


I haven't kept track, but I believe amongst my friends and acquaintances I've met a number of girls who've BF up to about 3 or 3-1/2, but the children who are still nursing at 4 or beyond are generally boys.

 


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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-16-2009
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 1:32pm

~~I've met a number of girls who've BF up to about 3 or 3-1/2, but the children who are still nursing at 4 or beyond are generally boys. ~~

I wonder if we should narrow it down even more to those children who have BF past two years old - or even three?

I would say that almost all the girls I have know to BF have weaned by three years, but the boys often go longer - in my experience.



~*~ Catherine, mom to three grown men - Jason, Michael & Joshua and Granma to Christopher & Leia.


CL Breastmilk vs. Formula Debate Board






Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Angel and Memorial tickers



Pregnancy Stories By Age - 43-56+yrs old!


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~*~ Catherine, mom to three grown men - Jason, Michael & Joshua and Granma to Christopher & Leia.


iVillage Member
Registered: 07-20-2008
Tue, 08-31-2010 - 5:24pm
It would be interesting to see.

One thing I can contribute...of all my older kids, the only one who has ever asked if he/she can nurse again years after weaning, was my 5 year old son.

Robynne mama to Emily (3/26/99), Allison (5/13/02)

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 09-01-2010 - 2:10am
I could present my friend's case as evidence to support your theory of boys nursing longer. Her older 2 (boys) nursed to 6 and 5.5, and her daughter only to 3. But I know better: she weaned her daughter due to personal issues, but didn't do the same to her boys.
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-16-2008
Wed, 09-01-2010 - 2:51am
I've noticed with the twins that Catie would wean with only a slight fuss where as Cam would starve and hate me. It will be interesting to me to see if one weans before the other.
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