Weaning A Child Who Is Over the Age of 4

This is another hard post to write as people feel so vehemently one way or the other about this subject. However, I am writing it because there is so little information available about this that applies to breastfeeding mothers nursing an “older child”  in an industrial society in our time, even though we know the “biological” age of weaning is two and a half to seven years of age.    Much of the work regarding nursing a child over the age of four looks at either non-Westernized societies (like I found a study on four-year-olds in Bangladesh who were nursing 8 to 9 times a day, many of whom  were assumed to be nursing due to being nutritionally stressed) or the work is more from an anthropological perspective, such as boys in royalty were nursed longer.

I am nursing my youngest, a  four and a half year old one to three or four  times a day right now.  My oldest child  nursed until she was a little over three years of age, weaned when I was on bed rest with  my second pregnancy, came back to the breast eight months later (and tried to remember how to nurse, LOL)  and attempted to nurse on and off until she was about four and three quarters.   Contrary to many people feeling uncomfortable about nursing a child over the age of 4, I don’t feel uncomfortable or badly about it.

I have many friends who have weaned children somewhere between the ages of 4 and 7.  People ask about child-led weaning; I have seen some children “wean  themselves” but the relationship there seemed to me to  always be a dance between mother and child with limits typically being set by the mother from an earlier age onward.  Many of the children who nurse frequently at the age of three or  three and a half seem to go on to nurse longer than those who are not nursing frequently at three and a half. 

I have one friend who wryly observes that her middle child, “was just sort of my experiment.  I set no limits on nursing at all, and he nursed until he was 7.”  (And this is a very structured, organized, limit-setting kind of woman!)    I have another friend who says that she feels most children after the age of 4 need some gentle assistance in weaning, and she feels there is no true “child-led” weaning unless you really do want to take that avid three and a half year old nursling and nurse them until they are 7 – and not everyone is comfortable with that.  There are older children over the age of three who do abruptly wean due to pregnancy or birth of a new sibling, but I have heard of these cases much less often than one would imagine.  However, these are not observations from a medical, scientific study – just what I have observed in my over ten years of working with breastfeeding mothers in lay groups and lactation settings.

Breastfeeding is a relationship between two people, and as such both parties deserve to have dignity and respect, especially the child.  The child may have high needs to be met, and some children have intense physiological sucking needs into the fourth year.  I am sure we can all remember children who sucked their thumbs until they were much older than four or five!  Some children have physiologic disease processes and truly need the antibodies that human milk provides.   The need for mother’s physical presence, for connection and the feeling of unconditional love and acceptance that comes from being at the breast is always there, always remains,  in these early years before adolescence.   The question becomes how comfortable one is using the breast to provide sucking, connection or closeness,  or  even antibodies,  as the child grows and matures. 

The question becomes how you feel in your heart.  Some mothers give a lot of “talk” to their child regarding weaning, “becoming a big boy or girl”, but truly feel conflicted in their heart.  They feel weaning is hard for the child, and they are not sure how to proceed without hurting the child or the child’s feelings, and they wonder how the relationship between themselves and the child will look once weaning is completed.  The mother and child have to find their relationship without that component of close connection, and this can feel challenging to both the mother and the child.

Instead of making this a time of conflict and ambivalence, I suggest several things:

1. Search your heart and see if you can see weaning as a process of opening the world to your child, of not “taking away” this precious relationship, but part of growing up, of expanding horizons.

2.  Do you love your child unconditionally at times other than when they are at the breast?  Does your love and warmth and respect for this child come forth?  If not, nursing may be how they are searching to fill this – that close and loving connection that occurs at the breast.  If you do want to wean, concentrate on your own positive thoughts toward your child and your relationship with that child first. 

3.  Search your heart and KNOW that your child (and you!) are going to be okay!  Find the positive ways your child can relax, go to sleep, handle the normal tensional outlets of each developmental stage and capitalize on that. 

4.  Work on discovering your child’s “love languages”.  If your child’s love language is “physical touch”, make sure you are filling their love tank with lots of physical touch at times other than nursing times.  If your child’s love tank is filled with “quality time”, do make sure you are providing lots of quality time to your child when you are not nursing.

5.  Have distractions ready for when the phone rings and that sort of thing.. ..I know many four-year-olds who still would like to nurse when mother is on the phone!

6. Look at your daily schedule and see how your child does with nursing when you are busy (some nurse less naturally then, but some nurse more because then they feel over-stimulated) versus when you are at home all the time (again, some children nurse less and some nurse more).

7.  If you are not comfortable nursing your child much past the age of 4 or 5, and your child is an avid nurser….  ….then it probably will be up to you to help your child cut down the number of nursings a day.  You have to be comfortable with this idea, and if you are not and want a truly child-led weaning, you may have to nurse until 5 or 6.    With some children the more you talk about weaning and cutting down number of nursings a day, the more anxious they become.  Many of the mothers I know had better success in just structuring their day so they were busy, daddy took over bedtimes in some cases, and other things that gradually and naturally  cut nursing down without a lot of explanation other than peacefully saying, “We can nurse at “X” time.  I am happy to (hold you now, get you a drink, get you something to eat, to play a game with you, to go to the pool, etc.) right now.”

8. Again, if you are ready to have the nursing relationship come down in intensity and you are helping your child grow, there may be some tears if the child is four and five and used to a certain rhythmical pattern of nursing to sleep or whathave you.  Again, this is where you must search your heart, see what you are comfortable with, feel okay that you truly are uplifting your child to the next level, that your child is growing up and it is going to be okay.  If you cannot believe this in your heart, then neither you nor your child is ready to wean. 

9. Some families do have a weaning party or provide a special weaning necklace or out to lunch to celebrate weaning.  Again, some children need help with moving on and need you to either decide it is okay to nurse until age 7 or they need you to be kind but not crumple. They may need you to  say after a weaning party or weaning lunch something to the effect of, “Nursing you was so special to me as well.  Today Daddy is going to take your little sister so you and I can do “X” together.”

10.  Work hard to examine how you feel about the joy of mothering.  If in your heart you feel enraptured with being home, with mothering, if you delight in your children, they are going to also feel joyful, happy, peaceful even without nursing and as nursing transitions and fades away.

If you continue to nurse your older child, be happy about it, be proud about it and know that when they are developmentally ready they will be done.  Whether or not “true” child-led weaning works for your family or not, whether you decide your child may need your help , cannot be decided by anyone but you and in your own observations of your child.  You can still respect your child and your child’s dignity whatever path you choose.  The path for the older child is not as clear as the path when nursing a small two or three year old, and that is okay, that is part of parenting.

Be comfortable with yourself and what your family needs from you, from the times when you do need to take the lead and the times when you need to surrender yourself.  That is the walk we walk in parenting a child that is a bit older.    But most of all, get clear in your own heart and decide.  That is what makes for a joyful family!

Love,

Carrie

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32 thoughts on “Weaning A Child Who Is Over the Age of 4

  1. Hi Carrie,

    Your site has been a breath of fresh air to our family! My partner and I find your style easy to read and understand compared to other waldorf teachings where at times our heads spin. So THANK YOU.

    We have 3 girls the eldest breast fed till 4, the middle till 2.5 and the youngest at 2.75 is still going. For a six month period I was feeding 3 children, then the two older girls sucking changed and it became uncomfortable (not hurtful). Slowly they ceased feeding on their own (though I suspect me being uncomfortable had something to do with it) however if hurt or really upset I would offer them a breast (and still do, the eldest now 6) though my eldest is upset she has forgotten how to suck but the middle still can.

    Once again thank you for such an enjoyable and informative site

  2. Thank you! how perfectly honest and natural your post is. i have 6 children and all but the youngest 2 weaned themselves between the age of 18 months and 3. there are circles in anthropoly that discourage co sleeping and ‘prolonged’ breastfeeding stating that it hinders the development of the I. It is further stated that baby carrying and breastfeeding past age 1 encourages a tribal consciousness. well…….I personally believe that in the time steiner was lecturing children (and adults) needed to become more individual. in those times obedience and subservience were rife. these days, in western society we tend to have young ones that are too much in ‘I and me and more’ and i believe many mothers have naturally returned to carrying, feeding and co-sleeping to remedy the state of a very selfish modern world.
    good on you. i feel confident to let mothers in my playgroup do what they feel is right.
    happy cuddling!

    • It is funny how dogmatic these things can be; Steiner himself was nursed until he was age 4 or so…:) didn’t see to hinder him!

  3. Hi Carrie,

    I love your blog. I was wondering if you could talk about pacifiers and night-time toilet training. My youngest children are 4 and 5, and both have had pacifiers since their adoption days and weeks, respectively, after birth. They only use them at night, and sometimes when they are really, really tired during the day. What can I do to wean them off as they don’t seem to want to? Also, neither of them are toilet-trained at night, they wear diapers, and I’d like some feedback in how I can encourage them to get up to pee at night without hassle and pressure.

    Thanks so much.

    Cesca

    • As far as nighttime potty training, most of the parents I know seem to just walk their children to the potty or carry them there when they (the parents) go to bed and then usually the child can make it until the AM….How many times a night are your children waking up to go to the bathroom?
      I would also check askdrsears.com because I believe there was something on there regarding nighttime potty training from awhile back….:)

  4. I weaned my daughter at 10 months because I had Thrush so terribly (and so did she) that I couldn’t nurse without biting my fist in absolute horrible pain. I was bleeding, it was so, so painful and I was not ready to wean. My daughter did fine, though. However, at about age 2 1/2 she started becoming very interested in my breasts, the fact that she used to nurse and would sometimes cry and tell me that she missed nursing. I indulged her once and let her suck on my empty boob and felt very weird about it. Now she’s 4 and we’re expecting another baby. She’s a very smart girl and has told me in tears that she’s going to be jealous when the baby gets to nurse and she won’t be able to. She used a Nuk (pacifier) until she was nearly 3. We weaned her. If she had a choice I believe she’d still be using her Nuk and still nursing! I’m honestly very happy to read that other women can nurse for so long but I’m not comfortable with it. What would you suggest for the upcoming transition in our family? Thanks for this post. I just found your blog and I spend each night reading as much as I possibly can!

    • Emily,
      I think siblings are the greatest gift you could possibly ever give to your little girl! Your oldest, like many little girls, sounds very verbal and able to talk about feelings and such. U know people will disagree, but I feel sometimes, in these cases, it is best not to give or add to much fuel to the fire. If she says something about nursing, then you can smartly add, “Yes, but you can eat ice cream and the baby can’t!” or “I can read you a book and hold you in my arms!” and LET IT GO.
      Be peaceful and confident in your parenting and your ability to handle two children and your oldest will be as well. That is important.
      I have many, many posts on here regarding these oldest verbal little girls and they may assist you. It is very important I think to not discount their feelings, but to also realize they are very, very small. From a Waldorf perspective, we would not even really consider them separate from you or the world. There are also many posts on here regarding the four year old, how to stop talking so much to our children and work with them where they are – which should be in their bodies at age four.
      Have a look around, so glad you are here, and I hope that gave you some food for thought. Take what resonates with you for you and your family.
      Thanks,
      Carrie

  5. I have read this post several times because I find it very supportive about something which has very little support in our society. I tandem nurse my 3.5 and 11 month old, and I am reading this post once again because I felt a little down after reading what Dancy wrote about breastfeeding in “You are your Child’s First Teacher”. It’s hard to put my finger on it, and maybe I am too sensitive, but I felt she didn’t put much value in extended nursing and even implied that breastfeeding is non-nutritive past the age of 9 months. So far I have otherwise loved the book, but was a little sad after reading that passage which seemed subtly negative of nursing past a year. As usual, I feel better after reading your words. Thank you for for your wonderful blog!

    • I am glad this is affirming to you! Please do not let the dogmatic approach of some anthroposophists regarding nursing, etc, get you down. Donna Simmons has a great approach to this topic on the “Waldorf Baby” section of her Christopherus website – check it out as I think this will be encouraging to you as well!
      Tandem nursing can be such hard work, pat yourself on the back!!
      Many blessings,
      Carrie

  6. Found it Carrie. Brilliant article. I have so much pressure on me via my family and friends to wean my 3.5 yr old and I admit I get frustrated tandem feeding at times, but it still didn’t seem quite right to force my little one off the boob when it means so much to her.

    It seems that every single one of your posts makes total sense to me. I am so happy that I have discovered your blog and will continue to read daily! I have just enrolled my daughter into our local steiner school and have found that since researching about waldorf, it has completely changed my life and how I see it and most importantly – how I parent.

    Warm regards, Vicki

  7. Pingback: Breastfeeding Beyond A Year « The Parenting Passageway

  8. Thank you so much for this article. I found it searching how to gently wean my 3.5 year old. He still loves to nurse, and almost always nurses to sleep, but tandem nursing him and his 9 month old brother is getting a bit hard for me (and harder for my husband when he needs to put the boys to bed).

    I’m trying to change up our nighttime routine so he doesn’t nurse in bed, but on the couch before we go up. We’ve had 2 days of tears, and I’m not sure I can continue. I’ll read this again (and again) and use it to help me decide if I’m doing the right thing for him at this time

    thanks again.

  9. Carrie,

    I couldn’t have found this article at a better time. I am tandem nursing my 13 month old and my 3.5 year old. Sometimes, typically during bedtime when they both need me at once, I get very frustrated and just want to throw in the towel. I’m often conflicted though, because I *know* my daughter is not ready and I know it would break her heart if I tried to wean her.

    I’m not sure I will be able to let her self wean, as I’m not sure I’d be comfortable nursing much after the age of 4, but we’ll see how things progress. Afterall, my original goal (before I really began educating myself) was to only nurse until 18 months. My how things change!

    Thank you for writing such a warm, heart felt post on such a sensitive subject!

    Warmly,
    Rhyah

    • Rhyah,
      Check out the back posts on weaning, there is one on weaning with love and one on weaning a child over the age of 4. I am proud of you for tandem nursing, this definitely has its own challenges but lots of rewards!
      Many blessings!
      Carrie

  10. Just reading this post again for some solace, after reading that our local Waldorf school requires that children be weaned and reading on a blog that a Waldorf school in BC “encourages” weaning. What is the deal, Carrie? Why are there not more people like you?

    • Hi Jane! Missed hearing your voice here…I am so sorry you are facing challenges with the school situation… I do think this can be rather individual to the school, families have told me what you are finding but other families have told me that at their school most of the children nursed until age 5 or so…
      I hope you find a satisfactory answer to all this, how challenging indeed.
      Email me privately if you need to,
      Carrie

    • I couldn’t resist leaving a few reflections upon this in relation to how those you would most expect to be on your side when it comes to breastfeeding older kids, are often not.
      I am a breastfeeding counselor, waldorfing mum (who sometimes uses kindergartens as support – also single mum so outside support I find essential!) and also all for AP (co-sleeping etc).
      My daughter is now 4 years and 11 months and for the last couple of months she only nurses in the mornings. Before that it was morning and night, before that it was the odd time during the day and during the night too. I began partial weaning for my own emotional well-being and fortunately my daughter has gone along with it. Our relationship is intense and I needed to bring some balance back for my own sake.
      So far those I would have expected to be OK with my breastfeeding a 3 year old plus and HAVEN´T been OK with it include:
      Homeopaths, Waldorf teachers, psychics, and fellow nursing mothers who weaned kids by age 2. I had figured that all of those people would simply “know” “get” “understand” the beauty and benefit of breastfeeding an older kid. They didn’t.
      Why do I think Waldorf teachers/schools often have an issue with it? I think firstly they simply lack the knowledge. Breastfeeding is not a topic that they will encounter too much and I find few ever knew that Steiner was breastfed 4 years plus! They will all come to Waldorf with their own beliefs and opinions from life to date and society on the whole – and we all know what that can imply! Also I believe many Waldorf teachers choose Waldorf for their own healing path and motherly issues can very much be a part of that. I know Waldorf teachers who dedicate more time to their school than their own kids, but that is as close as they can get, that is their path for healing, and that is perfectly ok.
      I think removing expectations is the best place to start. If you are looking for support do so among breastfeeding communities, not outside of them. Know when it’s best to keep quiet. It doesn’t mean that there is anything bad about what you are doing – it means you are not taking on the role of having to change other people’s belief systems or having to defend your own when met with opposition. On the questionnaire for the Waldorf kindergarten where my daughter is currently going I responded to the breastfeeding question of how long she was nursed as : 4 years. Do they really need to know we are still at? No. And my daughter is old enough to be an accomplice. She knows it’s a secret between mum and her. Something special and private.

  11. Like the other mother’s I too have found this blog in the nick of time. Today is my daughter’s 4th birthday, which we have been talking about as the time which she will no longer nurse. I have been nursing two for the last 13 months and it is wearing on me. I am ready to be done. She sucks so hard and it bothers me. Tonight after tears of her telling me I was ruining her birthday I caved and nursed her, I knew I would cave, but I hate the drama that she throws in for extra measure just to be sure I will in fact nurse her. She told me when done nursing that she just really loves the taste of my milk and just really loves to nurse. I don’t know how to cut it.

    In the mornings if I have an activity planned for when she first wakes up and if she wakes up in a good mood I can skip out on that one, but it is a night it is harder, if she misses the morning she remembers in the day and wants to nurse then. When I sit on the couch with her she starts to pet my boob which drives me crazy and I don’t want to nurse her but then when she cries my boob responds and I have to nurse her or it is painful cause my boob will be full and I can’t nurse the baby in front of her without nursing her. My husband hates me nursing her still I am on the smaller side, I eat very well! but still my 13 month old needs my milk more. I don’t have any friends who have nursed a child this long and really connected with your post as wow I am not alone!! Any advice for me would be so much appreciated.

    We are planning a birthday party for her with all of her friends and now that is the new date for her no more nursing, but I know that means nothing truly, she sees nursing as me loving her, which it is, but she is not getting that from me otherwise? My father, when I was younger, use to say how much empathy I had for people, but I feel growing up somewhere I lost it. I feel like I don’t come across as sincere at times, I am, but how do you regain empathy? Mediate? Sorry I am typing away! I feel like I am sending a message in a bottle to a faraway friend.

    • Julie, You are not alone. Weaning can be hard, but we always have to think of it as opening a door and expanding the world and not taking something away. Children who wean often talk about how much they love the milk and love to nurse and will sigh, “I wish I could still nurse” especially if there is a younger sibling in the house. I had a friend who told me her 11 year old said that the other day! And of course, he didn’t mean he really wanted to literally nurse! He meant he wanted that closeness, that security. You are forging a new path, a new relationship. You wrote that her birthday party will also be her weaning party, but you were not sure that meant anything. Of course it does if you have a calm cofidence in that!You are the parent, of course that means something if you say it means something, and you can help her to the next level of growing up but you must have confidence in this! There are other ways to be close and connect to your child other than nursing. There are wonderful things about growing up and she can do so many things a 13 month old cannot, but she will need you to show her with care how much you love her and treasure her with no GUILT about weaning. If it is the right thing to do for her and for you, it is the right thing to do. She will always have treaured memories of nursing, and you must be calm whilst she is going through this transition in this new space. If it is bedtime being challenging, dad will need to step in and help forge a new routine with her as well. Weaning takes the support of the family. All this being said, if she only nurses once a day and you can help her adjust her suck by reminding her to open her mouth very wide and to be gentle and limit the time, then perhaps you continue if you decide it means that much to both of you. I find many children can be done nursing around age 5 with the extra step of a weaning necklace, or weaning out to lunch at that age. However, to be honest some tandem nursing mothers have told me they never found the suck of their older child comfortable and I do think in some ways some older nurslings almost forget how to nurse and their mouth changes and such and the mothers were glad to be done in many regards.
      You are at a transition point in your parenting. Not everything in growing up is comfortable and what a child wants, but it can be our job to help uplift them to the next level with calmness and certainty and no guilt if that is the right thing for the child, for ourselves, for the family. There will be many more instances of this in the future.

      Hope that helps. I suggest you call a La Leche League Leader in your area to receive in person support for weaning the older child. Many Leaders have been through this and can be helpful!
      Many blessings, welcome to this space and enjoy the million posts about the four year old now that you have one of those! :)
      Carrie

  12. Thanks so much for the encouragement. I am weaning my almost 4 yr old because the nursing has become an annoyance to me instead of a pleasant experience shared between us. He is excited about becoming a big boy, but I think we are both a little sad about ending the nursing connection. I will concentrate on finding other ways to be close as we both move ahead. Thanks again for this site.

    • Larkin,
      This is the opening of a doorway, and how wonderful that you can see it as such…there is always bittersweetnes in life’s passages, but joy nonetheless.
      Many blessings to you, thank you for reading,
      Carrie

  13. Thanks for your caring article. I am nursing a 4 year old who has previously had to have some teeth extracted due to night nursing. Of coarse family all wanted the child weaned years ago but she is very strongly attached and cannot fall asleep without nursing. Her allergies started the problem in infancy-she now sleeps the night through w/o nursing (only to fall asleep) but I worry about her teeth anyway. She just doesn’t seem to be emotionally able to wean, and I wonder if she is more susceptible to tooth decay since I don’t often read of other extended nursers with this issue. Very conflicted and would appreciate your input. Every time I think I should cave to the pressure to wean her I find an article (like yours) that encourages what feels right to me. thanks for your help and happy new year!

    • Hi Confused, did you see the article on dental caries on this blog as well? Brian Palmer, if you google him, is the authority on breastfeeding and dental caries and has many wonderful things to say…

      Glad you are here, and Happy New Year to you!
      Carrie

  14. I am so glad that you took the time to write about this, and even though it is a few years old, I still want to say thank you. I am finally “over” the nursing around here, and our daughter will turn four soon. I find a lot of information about weaning 2-1/2 to 3 y/o but just that extra year changes their perspective greatly. I am glad you hit upon some important points and that my heart was open enough to acknowledge the truth right now. Time for more quality playtime with my girl during the day. Fortunately we are down to one, sometimes two, sessions a day, but I know she is clinging to it. I am sure if I make it a higher priority to fulfill her attachment needs at other times, then it will make this last drop easier for both of us.

  15. I just wanted to say I found this blog and decided to use 2 of the ideas mentioned together, to wean my 4 yr old daughter, as I do love her unconditionally all the time. And you are right Carrie- life will go on. One idea I have implemented is the Nursing Chart- whenever Julia DOES NOT nurse at a time when she usually would ( as she is falling asleep and then once through the night), she gets a sticker. She only needs to earn 4 stickers to obtain a small gift, She earns 2 stickers a night thus far. I made this number small so she could see that this goal is attainable, and then she’d want to try hard. Once she fills up the whole sheet, she gets a large gift of her choice. Also, I decided to let her nurse while I read her a book or story, then count to 20 or 30, then say “BLAST- OFF!” AS SHE IS BEING GENTLY UNLATCHED, Then she goes to sleep shortly after.

  16. Thank you! I only know personall of one other mother who nursed their child as long as I have and I often feel judged and alone. This article is a real help to me. Thanks again.

  17. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for your post. It is so needed. I think most people who nurse older children are afraid to talk about it, so they feel alone in a hostile world. I started out tandem nursing twin girls. When their little sister was born two years later, I continued to nurse all three. It was not, sadly, emotionally healthy for me. I ended up being mad at the twins whenever they wanted to nurse (which was all the time). A few times, I got so stressed in the middle of the night, with all three kids crying at me for “bubbas”, I left them at home with my husband and drove, alone, to a grocery store parking lot. I sat there for a while, just to cool down. After much drama (once I got so upset, I punched a hole in the wall) I finally weaned my twins around the age of 3 1/2. I swore I would never make the same mistake again. Fast forward a few years…Now, their little sister is almost four and I have an 18-month-old son. Of course, the four-year-old still wants to nurse. Every time she comes near me, she is tugs at my blouse or has her hands down my dress. It is driving me crazy. I want to spend time with her — I want to be close to her — I just don’t want it to be about breastfeeding all of the time. Since her brother was born, she has gotten so worked up about it. I feel as though it is all she thinks about. I just yelled at her, which made me feel terrible. She started sobbing, saying, “Mommy, you hurt my feelings!” I feel just awful, but I’m sick of breastfeeding a four-year-old and I see no end in sight. And yes, my family thinks I’m weird for breastfeeding for so long. I don’t know how other people wean their children. Ugh! It seems impossible.

    • Oh, Sarah. Hang in there. Could you call your local chapter of La Leche League or Attachment Parenting for support at all? And, perhaps, now is the time to get a children’s book about weaning, they do exist! Read that to your four year old, and talk together about nursing in a non heated time. Some mothers also plan a special weaning party or a date out with their child to signify the end of nursing. It can be hard, but if you can come to it with a steady and calm mindframe of opening doors with the relationship with your daughter, it can help. There are also a few books published by La Leche League that may be helpful, such as Mothering Your Nursing Toddler, When Weaning Happens, Adventures in Tandem Nursing, to name a few.
      Many blessings, and hugs,
      Carrie

  18. Thank you. I am having a very hard time with weaning my 4 year old while still nursing my 1 year old. There has been a lot of stress and I don’t have any one to talk to about it that understands. Thank you for your article. It helped me remember that listen to my heart is best and that even though I am scared that I am hurting him as long as I do this with love all will be ok.

    • Melissa,
      Glad to be here for you in this space. You are the loving, kind mother and you are the expert on your child. Always follow your intuition and your mother’s heart. There is a lot of love for our children, even during and after weaning.
      You can do this together!
      Blessings,
      Carrie

  19. Thank you for this. I am considering giving my four year old another nudge in the weaning direction and have been struggling with where to start. She only nurses 1 or 2 times a day now and her brother is 16 months old and still nurses on demand. So, it is hard to find balance. I struggle with her feeling left out, but I also struggle with her increasing demands to nurse RIGHT NOW which is making me want to move more towards weaning. Found this very helpful.

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