Unweaning: It Happens

9 Nov

On March 14th of this year, Ella nursed for what I thought was the last time. During that moment, I had no idea that she would be completely weaned afterwords. She simply never insisted on nursing again and accepted the alternatives I offered (like snuggling). When I realized what had happened, it was a very bitter sweet moment. As much as it was a sweet bonding experience, I was glad sheΒ  weaned on her own (due to lack of supply during pregnancy).


The last time we nursed, March 2009

Fast forward to about a week after Miles was born. She began to express interest in nursing and asking to “share nummies with baby”. I wasn’t really interested in nursing two children (who were different ages) but the last thing I wanted to do was create jealously over something as basic as nursing. So I agreed to let her nurse with Miles. The huge grin that broke across her face was amazing and the tender way she stroked his head while they nursed together affirmed my thought that unweaning would help ease the transition of having a sibling.

The road of tandem nursing hasn’t been always paved with golden bricks, though. I have very defined boundaries for Ella as to when she can or cannot nurse. It’s been a hard transition for her to know that Miles can have milk whenever he wants but she can’t. It’s hard for me to stand strong and stick to the boundaries but things get so much more stressful if I let her have free reign. It’s always so interesting to see how she thrives in an environment of age appropriate boundaries. But that’s another post for another day.

I honestly believe that rolling with the concept of unweaning cut down on a lot of potential sibling rivalry. When they both nurse together, Miles has been hardly able to contain his giggles while Ella rubs his head. Other times, she simply holds his hand or just looks at him while they “share nummies”. I feel this is aiding their sibling bonding. I also feel that when Ella nurses solo, it helps reaffirm that she is just as special and loved as Miles.



20 Responses to “Unweaning: It Happens”

  1. Nikki Campbell November 9, 2009 at 8:55 pm #

    Beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

  2. crystal November 9, 2009 at 9:37 pm #

    The last picture is the sweetest sibling picture ever!

    • Dallas Ann November 9, 2009 at 11:03 pm #

      I just love it! Esp. how their eyes are both SO blue and looking right up at the camera.

  3. Christine November 9, 2009 at 9:39 pm #

    This is one of my favorite blog posts I’ve ever seen! You have a beautiful family!

    • Dallas Ann November 9, 2009 at 11:03 pm #

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it. ❀

  4. Rozanna S November 9, 2009 at 10:13 pm #

    This is so beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

    • Dallas Ann November 9, 2009 at 11:03 pm #

      You are welcome! It was my pleasure. πŸ™‚

  5. Amie S November 10, 2009 at 10:03 am #

    thank you so much for sharing this Dallas Ann, it is beautiful. Your family is amazing.

  6. mrssoup November 10, 2009 at 12:13 pm #

    I love that last picture so much.

    • Dallas Ann November 10, 2009 at 8:24 pm #

      It’s one of my favorites so far!

  7. Kelly November 10, 2009 at 2:20 pm #

    Those are both beautiful pics! Thanks for sharing.

  8. Kiki November 10, 2009 at 7:35 pm #

    I know about unweaning too. Same deal when baby #2 came along. Child #1 got jealous, mean and snotty. Oh it was no fun. Maybe you saw my article in Mothering about it?? Unweaning Georgia? Anyway, following your hunch to give unweaning a try was a good one. Good for you and glad it worked out. It saved the day for me. I’m due with #3 midspring and wondering if #2 will want to unwean??? :0

    • Dallas Ann November 10, 2009 at 10:25 pm #

      I have not read your article, though it wasn’t for lack of desire! Mothering is on my Christmas wishlist and has been for a few years now. πŸ™‚

      Congrats on your new little one! How old will #2 be at the birth of #3? Is it a similar age as #1?

      • Kiki November 11, 2009 at 7:09 pm #

        There’s a link on my blog to it, if you’re interested….

        THANKS!!! Baby #2 will be a full year older (3.75 years) than #1 was (2.75 years). I’m hoping that makes a difference this time, b/c although I WOULD, I can honestly say I don’t really want to unwean again. But any port in a storm. We’ll see:D

        • Dallas Ann November 11, 2009 at 7:20 pm #

          I am interested! For some reason, your name is not showing up as a clickable link to your blog. 😦

          Ella was 22 months when Miles was born, so it really shouldn’t have surprised me. Does Georgia still nurse or did she wean a second time? If she did wean, how did that go?

          • Kiki November 11, 2009 at 7:27 pm #

            Hmmm, weird…I’ll have to investigate;D http://www.kikilaroo.wordpress.com.

            Georgia was 2 y 9 mo when brother was born, unweaned at 3, then re-weaned about 4 & 1/2. It went okay, really. As you’ll read, I had to set up some unforeseen rules…nursing only AFTER the new baby, nursing only in AM and PM (or she woulda nursed all the time) and that worked. Eventually she just sorta self reweaned. Weaning my son a few months ago was a challenge. I half think I would take it back, but that’s only when I feel really guilty 😦 which I know I shouldn’t. I was newly pg and so tired and boo hoo hoo, just knew it was time. We did it gradually and he’s fine now. As much as I wanted to be done nursing, I miss it (so weird how that works). So I’ll be nursing again in spring:D

  9. Mom4Kids December 4, 2009 at 9:53 pm #

    Beautiful! What good Mommy instincts you have! The contentment in their eyes is what stands out to me. Thanks for sharing this!

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