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Got Milk???

Extended breastfeeding describes breastfeeding that continues beyond one year. This confuses me. Let's just call it what it is . . .

Why does it need to be classified as extended? Why do we, (society) feel the need to label EVERYTHING? This description was not likely thought up by mothers who practice this "taboo" way of feeding their child. This label must have originated in the mind of someone who thinks anything past a certain age, strays from what is considered "normal" in order to be considered extra, or extended. 

  • Why is this such a hot button topic? 
  • But what is that magic age? 
  • If they can ask for it, are they too old?
  • Is it weird to breastfeed once baby has teeth?
  • Who decides what is best? 
  • He wont drink from a bottle, what do i do in public?
  • Should I cover him in public?
  • Am i supposed to feed him in the bathroom? (YUCK)
  • Why is it ANYONE'S business? 

Did you know that WHO (World Health Organization) actually RECOMMENDS "extended" breastfeeding?

"WHO recommends mothers worldwide to exclusively breastfeed infants for the child's first six months to achieve optimal growth, development and health. Thereafter, they should be given nutritious complementary foods and continue breastfeeding up to the age of two years or beyond."

. . . AND BEYOND . . . 

Personally, I dont need any government agency giving me permission to care for my child as I see fit, and neither should you. However, it's nice to know that all of us crunchy, granola eating, tree hugging, mother earth, hippie weirdos aren't just making it all up. 

There are proven breastfeeding benefits to both the child and mother. 
It gives infants all the nutrients needed for healthy development. It is safe. It contains antibodies and digestive enzymes that help protect infants from common childhood illnesses (who needs vaccines?) 
It is readily available and FREE. It serves as a natural method of birth control, offering 98% protection in the 6 months following birth. Adults who were breastfed as babies often have lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, lower chance of obesity and type-2 diabetes. Evidence even shows higher scores on intelligence tests. It reduces the risks of breast and ovarian Cancer for women later in life. 
Not to mention it helps you get back to pre-pregnancy weight faster! 

I have friends that never breast fed.
I don't judge them.
I have friends that have supplemented with formula.
I dont judge them.
I have friends that weaned their babies at 3, 4, 5 months, and switched to formula.
I don't judge them.

In return, I ask that the same respect is returned to all mothers that have decided to breastfeed. Whether we do it in private, in public, covered, or uncovered, for 3 days, 3 months, or 3 years . . .
We are ALL MOTHERS. Be nice to each other, and keep your judgements to yourself.

My story - My supply was slow building. I was traveling WAY too much for a new mom, and Jackson was going through my freezer stash faster than I could build it. There were more than a few times that I would be in tears getting ready for a trip, trying to squeeze every single drop I could, so my son would have food while I was gone. I tried all kinds of galactagogues to increase my supply . . . oatmeal, beer, fenugreek, even a prescription from my doctor ($150/not covered by insurance)
NOTHING worked well enough to make a difference, and I was desperate

Then, when Jackson was 5 months old... something happened that literally saved us. An acquaintance from my Bradley Class (who has since become a very dear friend) offered us 150oz of frozen milk that was just sitting in her freezer. Her son had some dietary challenges, so she was unable to use it for him. I will never be able to thank her enough for what she did for us. My supply has since been great! 
No issues to speak of, and my 16 month old is still going strong! Thank you, S . . . We love ya!

On a business trip in MN, after less than 36 hours away. Not too shabby!

I am sharing this information because so many opposing opinions can lead to confusion, frustration and shame in new mothers. As always, it is up to US to decide for ourselves. Do your research!

I recommend that you find your nearest LLL, and attend a meeting. You will find so many other moms that will help answer all of your questions and more importantly, make you feel comfortable enough to ask them!


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