Posts Tagged ‘extended breastfeeding’

I don’t write much about breastfeeding. In fact, a quick search of my blog only uncovered two breastfeeding-specific posts. One was about my older boys’ curiosity about their baby brother, and the other about extended breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding is just something I do with my babies. Nothing more, nothing less.

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Recently, the media has been paying a fair bit of attention to families practicing extended breastfeeding. Extended breastfeeding is a broad term that covers mothers and children who continue their breastfeeding relationships past the age of 1 year. Mothers who encourage and support nursing toddlers are frequently maligned in the press as curiosities, weirdos, or hippy nutcases.

I disagree. I think there are far more of us who practice this than anyone realizes — the fear of public shame often silencing discussion. I think we do ourselves a disservice by not sharing our experiences with other mothers, by discussing this topic in a much broader forum. How can extended breastfeeding be seen as anything other than “freaky” if we don’t normalize it by bringing it out in the open?

I don’t know very many people who set out when pregnant with the specific intention of nursing a toddler.

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This isn’t going to be the post you think it is. Seriously. My boys’ current fascination with breasts has very little to do with the titillating prospect of female nudity. No, my boys’ current fascination with breasts is purely based in their function — just when I think I’ve learned everything I need to know about breastfeeding, my boys teach me something new.

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