Athiliya, my eldest, will be 22 month this Sunday. I had wanted to wait until she was 2 to begin weaning her. I had not realized how hard it was going to be on both me and her when my second arrived.
Moira is now 6 weeks old. And I have been at my wits end for weeks. Before Moira, Athiliya's nursing was primarily after waking in the morning, at nap time, and at bedtime. However when she got ill, I would let her nurse more frequently. And I often let her nurse in the last couple of months because the cold weather made my boobs hurt, and the nursing soothed the pain.
Anyway, since Moira was born I have been trying to get her back on that schedule.. However she is not very cooperative. She want to nurse whenever I nurse Moira, or whenever she is upset or gets hurt. She demands it by coming to my and pulling on my shirt or boobs. My boobs have bruises from she grabs them and pulls them.
When I nurse her sister she comes over and tries and often succeeds at pulling my boob away from Moira. She even tries to push Moira off of my boob.
Her behaviour is out of control, and I have had it. I want her to understand being violent is going to get her what she wants, and I am working on that. And I want her to understand she does not need it anymore, because she is a big girl. But most of all, I have had it. I want to wean her, get her off boob altogether. I just don't know how. I really could use suggestions.
I'm a breastfeeding peer supporter, and one of the things we say to mums breastfeeding toddlers is that breastfeeding is subject to the same behavioural issues as anything else. If you wouldn't let your toddler pinch, push or embarrass you under any other circumstance then you shouldn't accept it just because it is breastfeeding. So whatever you are starting to put in to place with her behaviour needs to be consistent across the board.
That said she still needs to feel that you love her just as much as her new sister. So you need to identify things that you can do together that display love but aren't feeding and proactively persue those. So when you are about to feed your baby, say to your older girl "I'd like a cuddle with you. Do you want to bring over your favourite book and I'll read it to you while we snuggle up." Then feeding the baby time is not just about you and the baby, but is cuddle time for your DD too.
The above is actually part of a 5 step programme that I quite like. It is based on the idea that we don't refuse a request to bf but we try things to make these requests less frequent or less desirable.
Step 1 is where you plan to do loving (non boob related) things with LO. It recognises that pulling away from your child emotionally and physically makes weaning HARDER.
Step 2 is anticipate - offer your older DD a snack or drink or cuddle before she gets to the point of asking for a bf
Step 3 is alternatives - so you missed the above and the child gas asked to feed, you say yes but would you like X instead?
Step 4 is delay - you've tried steps 2 and 3 but DD still wants boob, so you say yes you can have a feed but AFTER your sister, or at nap time, or whenever
Step 5 is time limit. So steps 1-4 are all happening but now if you still have to give a feed, you say,"just a 5minute one" etc.
You decide when your LO is ready to move from one stage to the next but you always include the previous steps each time you move on.
Right. As far as the tantrums and violent behaviour, it remains the same as any other time.
Those are really great. And I think will help me with her. I know she loves to just sit with me and watch her favourite shows. So I can always use those with this. She also likes playing with her blocks with me. And I think I can use that.
I have been explaining to her she is a big girl now, and she eats big girl food. and that Moira is just a little baby and needs mommy to eat. And I have been giving her a small handful of her favorite cereal to snack on while I feed Moira.
Thank you so much! These steps will really help me wean her, I think.
Parenting a toddler is a big challenge nowadays. You to be very patient, full of emotions, and always needs to try experiments with full of energy.As a parent, you need to be a role model. If you and your spouse are hurting one another or hurting your children to get your way, don’t be surprised if your kids mimic that. When you find he/she is becoming very aggressive first Stay calm. This is the essential first step. Try taking some deep breaths. Remove your child from the situation and try to tell them that you could have handled the situation better. And also reward them when they handle the situation calmly. There are various ways you can search on the net and select which one is suitable for your child and situation.
You already got lots of good advice, I just wanted to add that if I were you, I would try to stop looking at your daughter's behavior as "violent". She has very few means of expressing herself, and no ability to control her impulses, it's just the way kids at that age are. I know it's not easy, because she is doing things that hurt, and you shouldn't let her hurt you (that's not what I am saying) but try not to frame it in your mind as violence, and don't expect that you can "make her understand" that you think she is being violent, because that would involve shaming her and it probably wouldn't work how you wanted it to anyway. She is doing what she can to get things she wants, it's pretty normal.
You need to set firm physical limits with her when she wants to nurse and you don't want her to. Make it so that it is physically impossible for her to get to your breasts and hurt you. If you can, try to set up a space for her, where she can be safely for 15 - 20 minutes, that she can't get out of, so you can put her there while you nurse your baby. You should make sure she knows it's not a punishment, and stay close by so she isn't scared, but if she is grabbing your boobs while you are nursing your baby, you have to find a way to make that stop. Then, don't feel bad about it. She will cry, she won't like it, but that's ok. Eventually, she'll understand that you need some time to do something else, and it'll get easier. Let her have her feelings, and comfort her after, when you can. Be as neutral as you can, tell her, "mom needs to take some time to feed the baby, you can play here while I do it, I will come and give you a cuddle when I am done".
Any opinions, advice, statements or other information expressed or made available on BabyandBump.Momtastic.com by users or third parties, including but not limited to bloggers, are solely those of the respective user or other third party. They do not reflect the opinions of BabyandBump.Momtastic.com and they have not been reviewed by a physician, psychologist or parenting expert or any member of the BabyandBump.Momtastic.com staff for accuracy, balance or objectivity. Content and other information presented on BabyandBump.Momtastic.com are not a substitute for professional medical or mental health advice, counseling, diagnosis, or treatment. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical or mental health advice from your physician or other qualified health provider because of something you have read on BabyandBump.Momtastic.com. BabyandBump.Momtastic.com does not endorse any opinion, advice, statement, product, service or treatment made available on the website. If you think you have a medical emergency, call your doctor or emergency services immediately.