hey. you. get off of my boob.
August 25, 2018 1:00 PM   Subscribe

I am looking for a reputable resource on nursing at one year and beyond. In the beginning of nursing, I found KellyMom to be very helpful. Now, at 11 months not so much. It seems like all the resources I can find are geared towards younger babies or babies who are getting supplementation with formula.

I’d like to have a better understanding of what nursing looks like at this stage: how often babies typically nurse, what (range of) volume of expressed milk older babies consume in a feeding when eating 3-5 solid meals a day, how to introduce cows milk as part of weaning.

I’ve consulted with a local lactation consultant who told me her speciality is in newborns.

My daughter is 11 months, eats 4-5 solid food meals a day and is breastfeeding 6x/day on the days she’s home with me. She sleeps through the night so that’s all happening between 6am and 630pm.

Here are some of the situations where I’m looking for guidance, preferable from a research based source, but I will also take your personal experience.

- Daycare wants to give my 11 month old 5oz of breastmilk every three hour (along side solid food meals) & I’m struggling to keep up with pumping that. That volume seems high to me & i’m wondering if it’s based on formula. Also it’s infrequent compared to what we do at home.
- what’s the relationship between nursing and solid food meals? Right now, we nurse and then half an hour later she eats solids. It can take up to a whole hour of the 3 hrs she stays awake to get both done.
- weaning. KellyMom seems to be like “your baby is not ready to wean” in its info about weaning. But I am ready for some weaning. (I’d still nurse first thing in morning and before bed.) I can’t keep up with the pumping for daycare and I just want some Autonomy back. My plan is to introduce milk slowly into breastmilk (like start with a TBS of cows milk in 4oz breast milk). I’d really prefer to follow some kind of reputable plan than make it up though.

Our pediatrician is great, but she also seems use to babies who are getting formula at this age. My daughter has rejected formula and at this age I’d really rather not press the issue.
posted by CMcG to Health & Fitness (9 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I recall Child of Mine by Ellyn Satter covering such topics, but the most recent edition seems to be from 2000 which is a while ago now! I haven't read her Feeding with Love and Good Sense: The First Two Years which looks to be from 2014, so I'm not sure how much detail is in that one.
posted by readinghippo at 2:16 PM on August 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

Can you start to send in the mixed milk to daycare and if she wants less than expected hopefully it means she’ll move more towards solids and water? I have a 3 year old who prefers milk to almost anything else so I wish I had pulled back on milk feeds a little earlier, perhaps a sweet spot where his preferences were a tiny bit more open. I moved our second child (who is 2) on to fennel tea for 2/3 of his drinks and he is a lot more open to varied solid foods and I think it is because he is hungrier a half hour after his tea than my older who craves milk the second he has an ounce of space in his tummy. I know it isn’t exactly the info you’re looking for but my boys are 1 year apart and it’s easy to see the different outcomes from choices I made- so it’s just an anecdote.
posted by catspajammies at 2:25 PM on August 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

readinghippo, I totally forgot that I own Child of Mine & that I stopped reading at the start of the toddler chapter (thinking “I’ll have time for this later”.) Thank you! It’s perfect. I’m still interested in personal experiences (thank you, catspajammies) as well as any other resources folks like.
posted by CMcG at 3:04 PM on August 25, 2018

I highly recommend the LaLecheLeague forum it was a life saver for info and experience of nursing beyond 12 months, introducing solids, and weaning a toddler.
The forum itself was moved in 2017 but the archive is still there i just checked. I dont know the new forum but was part of the old one for years and hope its quality is as good as theold one (eg very nonjudgemental, no pressure or guiltripping allowed by mods).
If you simply want to read there are hundreds of threads in the old forum about nursing at 11 months.
My son is now 9 yrs old and weaned with 3, so memory is a bit blurred but feel free to memail, if you just want to hear more lived experience, i prefer not to share details here as bf toddlers is a bit of a contentious topic. But i dont mind sharing by memail.
posted by 15L06 at 4:07 PM on August 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

My only experience is with my own 3 children, but basically at the year mark, I switched the order of milk and solids. I’d offer solids first (with cow’s milk) and then nurse afterwards for all but the first thing in the morning feeding. Then, I dropped the 2nd feed of the day, then the 3rd, etc. so that all that was left was the morning and bedtime one. I weaned completely right around 18 months, when there was a natural decrease in their interest in nursing. It was fairly painless on all sides. My kids all had periods when they just weren’t into the boob, and the last one coincided with when they start walking.
posted by snickerdoodle at 5:02 PM on August 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

My daughter is 12.5 months, still nursing at morning and before bed, but not during the day and I'm not pumping at work anymore. I don't have any resources to suggest (I need to go back to Satter, too!) but I can tell you what it looked liked for us to get here, since it sounds like it's where you want to be.

She has nursed first thing upon waking for her entire life, and before bed for as long as she's had a regular bedtime and routine. She's in daycare from 8:30/9:00 to 5:30 pm. I sent 16 ounces for most of her life, but it dropped to 12 ounces when she was 10.5 months because she wasn't finishing her bottles, and then down to 10 ounces at 11.5 months for the same reason. I remember being stressed about this because I also couldn't find any hard numbers on how much she should be drinking, everything was about formula fed babies, but it seems to have worked out, and I definitely wouldn't have been able to keep sending that 16 ounces.

At home on the weekend, I think around 9 or 10 months I started to swap the order of milk and solids during the day. This is earlier than I think KellyMom recommends, but it worked well for us, and aligned with her routine at daycare. At that age she'd normally nurse 4-5 times a day (including that AM and PM feed), usually before naps during the day, and it dropped to 3-4 times total by the time she was 11 months old. It dropped mostly because I didn't offer as much and she didn't seem to be bothered by this. She has always been a baby that preferred fewer feedings though, even at 2 months old she only wanted to nurse 6 times a day, so ymmv.

I was very eager to start introducing cow milk because I really wanted to stop pumping, and started the week she turned one. I do know people whose pediatricians have been ok with them introducing cow's milk at 11 months in situations, but I don't know how common that is. I started with 25% cow's milk to 75% breast milk for a week, then moved up to 50/50, and next week will do 75% cow's milk to 25% breast milk. She hasn't had a problem with the taste, but we have noticed she's been a little constipated. Our pediatrician doctor said it's really common when transitioning to cow's milk and it should get better, but I can't confirm this yet.

Good luck to you - I hope you find a path to more autonomy and less pumping stress soon! Feel free to memail me if you want to talk more about it. Definitely not an expert, but I have been through this recently.
posted by radiomayonnaise at 6:46 PM on August 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

This is a good age for a modified “don’t offer, don’t refuse”, where you decide to eliminate a particular nursing session by offering an alternative, only nursing is the baby insists. You could also start offering solids prior to a couple of your nursing sessions, which generally results in either lack of interest in nursing afterward or a shorter session.

Either way make sure she’s getting hydrated by other means!
posted by padraigin at 7:49 PM on August 25, 2018 [2 favorites]

I nursed both my kids on demand at that age (I am a SAHM), and they were not eating nearly as many solids as your kid is. (Both my kids didn't really take to solids until 13-15 months.) HOWEVER. I've had a number of friends who worked, including some who worked highly demanding jobs with long hours. The overwhelming majority of them stopped pumping sometime around 1 year. It's a spectrum -- it's not like something magical in a baby's biology happens at 12 months that makes them ready to cut back on nursing. And a successful nursing dyad takes into account the needs of both parties. So if you're ready to cut back on pumping, by all means, go for it.

When a baby moves toward toddlerhood, IME, that's a great time to start setting boundaries around nursing. Especially if you can make that normal before they start dramatically exerting their own will. So if you only want to nurse before/after sleeping, or at any specific time, or start a "don't ask, don't refuse," I encourage that. "Normal" breastfeeding varies so widely after the first 12 months. Most breastfed kids I know wanted to nurse more or less at different developmental phases, regardless of boundaries their parents had previously set, but the most important times for toddlers seem to be before falling asleep or waking, and when they reunite with their parent after a day apart. Breastfeeding an older baby can be a great training ground for a lot of those parental negotiations we have to make every day: it's not as much about what's "normal" as it is about what works best for you and your child.
posted by linettasky at 2:18 PM on August 26, 2018 [2 favorites]

Just on the quantity question, I send 12oz to daycare (4oz * 3 bottles) for my 8.5 month old and have been at that amount since five months. That 12oz gets her from ~7am to ~5pm. As she gets bigger, she just eats more solids. When I first went back to work, we had a bit of an adjustment period where she was eating much more (like 16-19oz), and I couldn't keep up. I spoke to a lactation consultant who told me that 12-14oz was plenty. My kid is fine and definitely not starving.

I'm also planning to stop pumping when I get to around a year (without replacing it with formula).

For the timing with solids, mine gets two solids meals at daycare, but I'm not sure how they time it. But I've just finished nightweaning, so we've been really stuffing her in the evening to help that process - nurse at 5, solids dinner at 6, nurse to sleep at 7. As she gets used to sleeping through, I'll probably cut out the 5pm nursing and move dinner earlier.

Also, if you still need more info, I did my lactation consult over Skype. There was no need to meet in person since I didn't need anyone to check my latch or do a weighed feed or any of those things. So there may be a more helpful person out there for you.
posted by oryelle at 5:38 PM on August 26, 2018 [1 favorite]

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