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Next step: no more pump but still nurse?

With my two previous champion nursing babes, I pumped until about 12-13 months.  After that, even though I was working and away from them full-time, they drank cow's milk in my absence.  Still, we nursed when we were reunited in the evenings, and we nursed all through the weekends on our days together.  Each of my first two children nursed until 2.5+ years old.

Now, with our more slender newest member of the family, I have continued to pump as additional nutrition.  Not only has he been so slight, he has also had food sensitivities to dairy & gluten that have prevented him from eating the high-fat, high-protein toddler foods that I relied on with my first two children.

And, as I was traveling for work today, hauling my pump and all its parts, pipes, nozzles, bottles and valves with me, I thought: my "baby" is almost 20 months old.  And still I pump.

Has it gone too far?  I mean, he is now eating cheese and yogurt (and apples and cereal), and a lot of them!  He is getting plenty of nutrition outside of the measily 5-6 ounce I produce for him daily.  He seems to be continuing to grow (I think.  Next weigh-in is next week).   Perhaps I fear that my supply will go away completely, not even able to supply on demand in the evenings or weekends?

Have you phased out of pumping but continued to nurse?

And, more on pumping:
Mama Pump-A-Lot 1
Mama Pump-A-Lot 2
Nursing Working Mama's Conundrum 
Breastfeeding At Work: do you know your rights?
Stress & Pump Do Not Mix

Comments

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I must admit, I have been so surprised to hear that you have still been pumping at all!

My own experience has been (with 3 children now) that I just never really got any let down with the pump if I was not in those first few months when I had a big supply. So pumping has been a challenge for me to sustain.

My little one is actually 1 year in a couple of weeks now. And I started introducing cow milk at 10 months old (got the OK from the pediatric nurse here in Sweden) because I was working a couple of days a week and baby did not like formula. Nursing continues in the evening..and in the early morning (5am)!! But has worked beautifully. He shows no sign of stopping nursing ( a little to my dismay actually ). But I will continue a little longer...but I am the kind of mom that thinks breaking some habits at younger ages (read 1 versus 2 year olds) is easier...

I'm not ready to end that relationship either. My son is 20 months as well. And I know that he is my last.

I just bowed out on a 4 day seminar that I was so wanting to attend, because I didn't want to spend that much time away...afraid I would dry up! He nurses 3 or 4 times a day now, mostly at night. I tried to pull out my pump and see what I'd get, but my body just refused to let down for it.

My son is 18 months. We still nurse (before work, after work, before bed) and on the days I am not at work. I stopped pumping at 16 months. My supply has diminished with no "demand" done during the working hours. I can tell it's gone down because my son continues to sign for milk and wants to switch sides with greater frequency. I feel a little bad that I'm not producing all he wants, but I remind myself he is getting great nutrition through other sources.

Stacy

I stopped pumping around 13 months but continued to nurse for another 4 months in the evening in the morning. The supply was not a problem when I stopped pumping.
I noticed my daughter did not drink much of cow milk until I fully weaned her off. A t that point she started loving cow milk.

I would not have thought I'd still be pumping at 24 mos, but here I am. I work full-time at home, so it's easy for me to have a comfortable place to pump, and I admit it's become part of my day (thank you nursing bra and bra attachments). I am actually thinking about cutting out the pumping soon and just letting DD nurse when she's home, and stop sending milk to daycare with her. She happily drinks cow or rice/almond milk, but I admit I've enjoyed nursing (for the most part!) so I've been reluctant to stop pumping with the fear that the little I have left would dry up. It may be time, though...

My pump gave out on me when my youngest was just over a year. I'd never big a good pumper anyway, and couldn't justify purchasing a new one at that point. I did buy a hand-operated pump though and found it to be a great solution. I could easily toss it in my bag because it was small and it could be used anywhere given no need for a plug. I could still pump once or twice at work for my comfort, and the little guy just nursed when at home. I didn't necessarily even save the milk because it wasn't about the nutrition at that point, and the amount was minimal to begin with. But I feel like it worked for us to keep nursing for another year after that.

I had the same fears - I stopped pumping when my daughter was around 20 months old, and we are still doing 2 nursings a day (she is about 29 months). Your supply will adjust and will just sort of taper off as your nursling does!

I continued to pump until about 15 months. I had a weird schedule where I was gone MWF for two nursing sessions (mid morning and nap). It was primarily to protect that supply for my skinny baby the rest of the week and to protect against discomfort - I could skip one but not 2 sessions without feeling it. I pumped until he dropped the mid morning session at 15 months. My kid actually didn't drink the milk because he didn't care for the bottle; instead I donated it to a local mama who needed it. Within 2 months, kid was only nursing to sleep. Nursing to sleep was my least favorite nursing time, so I didn't complain much when he stopped on vacation - he was utterly pissed he wasn't in his bed at home and cried, refusing the comfort of the breast, for 3 nights straight - at 18 months.

I hated pumping but told myself I'd stick it out for a year, and I put away the pump after my daughter's first birthday party. We continued to nurse on demand whenever I was actually home with her (I work full time), and over the last five months or so have gone down to 2x-3x per day--morning, before bed, and usually when I get home from work. She's 22 months now and shows no signs of slowing down further.

I know my supply is less than it used to be because when I was away for 3 days for a business trip recently I didn't have to pump at all, but she seems to get what she needs, and I think at this point it's less about providing nutrition anyway.

My little girl will be 3 next month. I travel for work multiple times per year, and for the first 2 1/2 years I always brought a pump. I was really scared that I would have a total dry-up, being gone for 6 days at a time. But I would pump for 25 minutes and get a few scant drops--no letdown--and that was even after 3-4 days of no pumping, when I first started to feel a little uncomfortable. A couple of months ago on a trip I found that I didn't need to pump for 5 whole days, and then I gently did a little manual expression in the shower instead--it worked a LOT better than the pump, and now I've stopped traveling with it at all. Amazingly, when I'm home, there's still plenty of milk for the little one in the morning and at night, our nursing times. It's like magic. (And she's old enough that i specifically ask her about it all the time! "Is there enough milk coming out? Both sides?" Happy nods or detaching to say "yes!".)

Me again. By the way, the whole first year I brought her with me on these trips, and pumped for her in the office for her next day's supply.

Baby #1: phased out pumping at 18 months, nursed for several years after that. (baby's weight fine, ate tons of stuff, no food issues)

Baby #2: phased out pumping at 11 months and asked for baby to be brought to me at work, bec baby losing weight: surprise! baby gained more when feeding directly. Don't miss pump. Baby now 19 months, barely gaining weight, nurses a lot at night & gets lots of milk, nurses during day but gets little (???)

My son is now 20 months old and I phased out pumping at 17 months. By then, I was pumping once a day, getting *maybe* one ounce and my stash in the freezer was all gone. It was stressing me out.

I, too, was worried that my supply would diminish and that I would no longer be able to nurse him at naptime on the weekends. But that hasn't been the case. My supply kicks in just enough for him to get his snuggles and love in (and I still nurse him to sleep). So now I nurse him when he wakes in the morning, before he goes to bed, if he wakes in the night, and on weekends at nap time.

So I'm another mama who would tell you that you're probably okay to put away the pump and still be able nurse your little one when you're together. Good luck!

By ten months, I was done with pumping and we supplemented with formula before switching to cow's milk when she turned one year. I still nurse(she's now 14 months), but we are definitely slowing down and only nursing once a day. I'm surprised that my supply has remained stable with such minimal nursing, but it seems fine. If I stop producing, we'll just be done and that will be that.

I stopped pumping at 8 months and still nurse my 27-month-old once or twice a day. I haven't had an issue with supply post-pumping, and I was so glad to put the pump away! I think our bodies are pretty amazing and can handle toddler nursing patterns just fine.

Yes,

I stopped pumping a month ago still I'm nursing my 21 month old son twice a day.

Joyce Williams D

I know these are older posts but this info is great! I am still dragging my pump to work with me, but recently started a new job so my pumping schedule times have been a mess. When I try to pump I barely get anything and my freezer for daycare supply will be gone after this week. My munchkin will be 11 months at the end of this week but I so enjoy our cuddle times together. She's use to not nursing during the day due to daycare, but she likes her bedtime, some time during the night and morning nursing times & she eats table food well throughout the day. Although slender, she is healthy and she is the only one of my 3 kids I have ever bf this long and she is the only one of the 3 to never have had an ear infection by this age! Recently, I have felt like there's something wrong with me because I am no way near pumping the quantity I used to be able to pump. Whether it's me or her self weening, I think I will quit dragging my pump along and only nurse at night, through out the night if needed & in the morning and on weekends. Thanks Ladies!

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