Is it natural or nutty to breastfeed a child who's three?

Poll choices
Posted 7 years.

34 Comments

  • A - 7 years ago

    yeah if they want it let them have it, awesome thing to teach ure child, these kids are going to be soooooooo embarrassed about all of this, i pitty them and hope they can get over it, very traumatizing for sure. 6 is waayyyyy to long for breast feeding, if they want the milk, pump, end of story, if u dont want to thats your attachment issues not the childs, dont leave it on the kid to say something, they dont know any better. you as a mother are supposed to teach them restraint and that u cant always get what u want, unless ure just a a phyco mother with major attachment issues, what are u gonna do when they leave the house? or go on there first date? whip out ure titty then too?? think about it

  • Ferrier - 7 years ago

    I breastfeeded 3 kids and i'm breastfeeding my fourth one wh'os 2 month old. One of my boys was breastfeeded till he was 3 years old. He only drank once every 5 days.... that's not slavery oO. I travel with my kids, i go to restaurant, i go out a lot and well, to me not breastfeeding is slavery. Because you have to take bottles, always find a way to heat the water, when the baby is crying you can't stop him ...sooo no restaurant, no trips abroad (i'm going to thailand with my 2 month old duh). And i'll be able to go back to the theater when she will be around 6 month old when i can give her to a friend for a few hours. So to me breastfeeding is Freedom. And also i don't have to go on a diet and my kids aren't fat because of my milk. People look at you yes... but in France is it more offensive to show your breasts on the beach, let your underwear show when you're wearing low trousers...or feeding your baby?

  • Asha - 7 years ago

    Choosing to breastfeed or not is a personal issue. The woman who chooses not to breastfeed should not be blamed. NIETHER SHOULD THE WOMAN WHO CHOOSES TO BREAST FEED. I am sure she doesn't breastfeed ALL DAY! After 1 year of life they don't need breastmilk every 2 hours! They probably drink once or twice a day. I don't think that takes up her WHOLE DAY, do you?! What is the medical take? My pediatrician told me the LONGER you breastfeed, the better it is for the child for neurological benefits. He told me people from other countries breasfeet for 5 - 6 years of age and that is normal in those countryies. And I am sure those woman who are working in those countries(in the home or out as mentioned by the author) are not pulling out their breast every 2 hours). We in America are just prone to being much more independent. That's fine. We also feel that to make a difference you have to be outside of the home for 8 hours or more. That is fine as you may be making a huge difference in the world. However don't speak so poorly of a woman who is trying to do only good for her son. Breastfeeding no matter how long benefits the child and mother. Being purposeful in forming your children so that they may benefit society well is a very noble task that not many people take on!

  • Julia - 7 years ago

    @R- copying your comment 8 times doesn't make your statements any less ignorant.
    I was a La Leche League leader for many years and saw many Mom's who could not physically breastfeed; that fact did not make them less of a Mother. It can be a painful situation when a Mother cannot breastfeed, certainly making some women feel inferior. The TIME article did the subject of breastfeeding no favors. Most mothers and fathers want what is best for their children. To say that the practice of attatchment parenting is somehow fanatical or harmful is a falsehood. As with any movement or method, there will always be people who are more zealous than others. Attatchment Parenting is ONE philosophy about how to raise a child, it is not the only philosophy. And I am not sure where the subjects of breastfeeding and attachment parenting got melded together, they are mutually exclusive of one another. La Leche League, the world's foremost expert on breastfeeding, has no position on anything but breastfeeding, period. The United States is a country of people who don't want to be bothered by their children's needs (get them out of our bed, get them off the breast, etc.). If Bonnie truly believed that "women deserve to have a life..." then why does she bash the women who chose a life of full time motherhood? Oh, and women did not strap their children to themselves "so they could work"; they strapped their children to themselves because the children, like all children, suffered from separation anxiety so they were simply attending to their child's cue for love and attention. It has been great as a LLL leader to help a mother see how she can stay home with her children. Sometimes people recognize they can do with less and sometimes mothers do have to go to work, this does not make them less of a mother.
    I am not going to repeat the facts that so many other intelligent women have posted here. They are true. One only need look outside the USA to see that the rest of the world is spending more time with their children, co-sleeping, breastfeeding, educating, etc. than parents in the US. As for you Bonnie, you couldn't sound more guilty about your role as a mother or more ignorant about breastfeeding and attachment parenting. Your article is nothing but a bunch of ignorance and vitriol. As to your question, expecting some kind of backlash against breastfeeding, "Is natural or nutty to breastfeed a child who's three?" "What do you think HollywoodLifers"? You got your answer, most of us think breastfeeding our children at any age is NATURAL!
    And by the way, I attachment parent and breastfed 3 children for a total of 10 years. I breastfed one of my children until he/she was 5 years old, he stopped on his own in his own time. I tandem nursed two of my children until they were 3 and 4 years old while I was pregnant with my third child. They are now young adults and are wonderful, thoughtful, smart people.

  • Des - 7 years ago

    Breast Feeding is natural and best no matter how you look at it and no matter the age. The world wide average is 8 years old. America has become so against children it is rediculous, I mean really it is ok to kill our fetus and it is not ok to breast feed. Here is some thing to think about, seeing a woman with a child attached to her breast is not as revealing as the clothing that 95% off women wear now days, most women have nothing on but just enough to cover her nip, but you put a child on that nip and it is discusting. REALLY, come on. Women need to get educated and start taking a stand against sociaty and do what is right not what is preferred.

  • Anon - 7 years ago

    I don't understand what's slavish about whipping your boob out for 5 minutes every 8 hours? Whats that? Your child needs a meal every 4-5 hours? Better go to macdonalds else you'll be a slave to the kitchen and your life will become a living hell...

    Also, it is totally possible to go away for the weekend and your supply will be fine if your child is old enough.

  • Jenna - 7 years ago

    You should educate yourself before you go spouting off at the mouth perpetuating misinformation. This is simply your opinion and is not based on any fact. Breastfeeding is normal and natural for many years in the beginning if a child's life.

  • Grietje Keller - 7 years ago

    "WHO strongly recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life. At six months, other foods should complement breastfeeding for up to TWO YEARS OR MORE."

    http://www.who.int/features/factfiles/breastfeeding/facts/en/index.html

  • Jen - 7 years ago

    Let's see... your small child asks for something healthy, nutritious and comforting, which is free and easy to provide, which they've had all their life, and which will reduce your chance of getting cancer. Do you say yes or no? Why is this even a question?

  • Foreign mom - 7 years ago

    I breastfed my youngest for over 4 years. As someone in the comments said, when kids are bigger you do not demand feed and I was back to work years before I weaned my daughter. Luckily I live in a country where maternity leave and parental leave together count for 9 months and where one of the parents has the right to be at home for 3 years (if s/he so chooses) without losing one's job. So there is no need to return to the workplace when a child is 3 months old. And for anyone over 9 months of age, breastfeeding outside of work hours is easy :).

  • Jennifer - 7 years ago

    I think the problem most people have with this is a simple mis-conception. She nor her children are forced to feel like they need to do this, but she understands the benefits of breastfeeding a toddler (and it is typically 1-2 very short nursing sessions with a toddler). Basically the breastmilk contains many important benefits, like probiotics, anti-bodies, DHA (all of which are natural and are designed specifically for her childs age). I know, "get those benefits from somewhere else", but have ever learned about the importance of gut flora? The balance of good bacteria? God/Mother Nature truly did design human breastmilk to supplement toddlers and children while they in very critical developmenting years (laying the foundation for life). Any amount of breastfeeding is an accomplishment and has a positive impact on future health. Just like with well-adjusted family units, the experts say that children will naturally give up comfort items by the age of 5 (like with pacis or thumb-sucking) I would assume this is natural as they gain more positive self-image. I would say that a mother breastfeeding an older child because she wants/needs to and forces this insecurity onto her children would be a different situation (this is not what this mother is doing). The mis-conception is that the mother "does it selfishly", "the child will be damaged" or the mother feels an obligation. The AAP states that their are no studies proving that nursing beyond 1 year is physcologically demanging. I nurse my children until they are 2ish (after 1 year I choose to explain to my children that nursing is for home, that's a personal choice. And we do typically nurse in the morning and after nap. I know they are getting all that amazing stuff that human children just can't get from cows milk. Let alone, pasturized and homogenized milk) .
    Mother of 2. Advocate for intact genitals of all children.

  • Steph - 7 years ago

    It's totally natural. No need to be nasty; it won't change FACTS.

  • Jamie - 7 years ago

    Why would you assume that, just because this woman is still nursing her three year old, she does "nothing else, all day long"? I nursed my
    Oldest until he was 2.5 years, and it was NOT on deman nursing like it was in his infancy.

    It is so sad to see mothers bashing each other for making the best choices they can for their families. Just because I would never consider leaving my 3 month old at home and returning to work (and yes, we have made intentional sacrifices and choices to allow me to stay home with my kids!) I would not verbally assault another mother for doing so.

  • Desiree - 7 years ago

    Please educate yourself on the human species, their normal breastfeeding duration, and why the breasts exist before you speak (write) again. Breastmilk is never anything less than perfect nutrition and breastfeeding is never anything but perfect nurturing.

    If something stirs up negative feelings inside you, stop. Think. Educate yourself. Hear the other side (from the other side, not sensationalized reporting). Then look inward and try to understand your negative reaction. Maybe, just maybe, you feel attacked because of your own insecurities about the way you parent or were parented. Most parents want to do what is best for their children. Parenting is tremendously important! It is normal to feel hurt, confused, angry, and such when you feel that your parenting style is being threatened. However, how are we to evolve as better parents if instead of learning about other ways, we always stick our head in the sand and defend what we are doing tooth and nail? Don't we owe it to our children to at least know our options? To at least be open to understanding the alternatives? Put on your big girl panties and wade through your own insecurities for the sake of your children. And if your children are grown, for the sake of our society, because our society already has enough bigotry and ignorance.

    Something you should know is that many, many "Attachment Parents" started out against the tenets of "Attachment Parenting," myself included. However, when we became parents ourselves, and the norms of parenting in our culture felt all wrong, we stopped and thought. We used logic. We researched. We moved past our own cultural conditioning and opened ourselves up to new possibilities. We started ignoring the bad advice, the million dollar marketing campaigns, the norms, and started listening to our instincts, our brain, and most importantly, our child. And then, long after we decided cosleeping, babywearing, extended (normal) breastfeeding, etc were what was best for our children, only then, did we discover what we were doing had a name. That is was "a trendy thing." Silly us for thinking all along that we were just "parenting."

  • Z - 7 years ago

    The global average age for weaning from the breast is anywhere between 2 and 7 years old. A 3yr old nursing is well within the realm of normal and natural. Breastmilk does not magically cease to have the same unmatched nutritional and immunological benefits just because the child passes a particular birthday. The World Heath Organization recommends breastfeeding to a MINIMUM of 2 years, and as long beyond that as the mother and child see fit. Somehow I think the WHO knows more about this subject matter than the random commenters here.

  • BREASTMILK SAVES LIVES - 7 years ago

    EVERYONE CAN BENEFIT FROM BREASTMILK NO MATTER WHAT AGE THEY ARE. BREASTMILK IS AMAZING STUFF!

  • B - 7 years ago

    I will breastfeed my child for as long as he/she wants! My children all self weaned. Ive never made it to 3 yrs but find her commitment spectacular! BRAVO to ALL breastfeeding Mothers!

  • Mom of 4 - 7 years ago

    breastfeeding is a mother & childs right! Who cares how long a Mother & child breastfeed for. Breast is best no matter what age!

  • Breastfeeding Mother - 7 years ago

    BREASTFEEDING FOR ALL CIRCUMCISION FOR NONE :)

  • F - 7 years ago

    "R"..... Please go kill yourself. You are an idiot, and I hope your children don't get that from you. Good for you for breastfeeding at all, because that's more than most people do, but please, do some research. Breastfeeding is suggested for babies, toddlers, and even children, if they are still wanting it, have health problems, or were premies. You're the sick one who sees breasts as something more to do with sex, than build in bottles. It's people like you who make it hard on moms who actually want what's best for their children, not what's most convenient. Mom's only flaunt themselves with breastfeeding when people like you make such a big fuss about it, so you'd think you all would leave them alone so they won't "flaunt" themselves anymore. PROBLEM SOLVED!

  • Amber - 7 years ago

    How is it nutty to breastfeed to 3 years?? The World Health Organization has the recommendation of no less than 2 years, and suggests for anyone who has a child with health problems or was premature, to go as long as they can, especially in impoverished counteries. There is nothing wrong with it, and if people would like to raise hell about others trying to tell them how to parent their children with spanking, letting them "cry it out", or other styles that are considered up for debate, why not leave this up to the parents' discretion as well?? It is natural to breastfeed children, that is why people in parts of the world that are untouched by "civilized" beliefs still breastfeed up until their children are pre-teens..... Because it's natural. Only in our culture, where sex is everywhere, and abuse is yelled any time someone has different styles in parenting, would this be seen as strange. I think it's strange to force a child into drinking something that comes from an animal out of his species that's been powdered with tons of additives, that has been clearly ruled as not even second best to mother's milk. How is that not strange?? Choosing to feed your child something that does not have everything they need, something that is constantly recalled for being dangerous or unsatisfactory, or something that simply makes their child gassy, sick, unhealthy, and less likely to bond easilly with others....... That is nutty. Why are the parents who choose something that isn't best for their babies or children the ones in the spotlight?? If they were doing something that huge corporations could not profit off of, and were bad for their children, they would have them taken away, and be put on trial for abuse. This is aweful. Bunch of idiots.

  • Lynn - 7 years ago

    Breastfeeding until the age of 3 is perfectly natural and common. In India, it's not uncommon to breastfeed until 8 years. In Mongolia, most children are still breastfeeding at 6 years. Breasts are normal. They're there to feed babies. They are not offensive.

  • M. shank - 7 years ago

    I think Time magazine could find something else of interest for a front cover of a magazine. Think about who get to look at this and the effect it might have on them.

  • PS - 7 years ago

    I do feel sorry for the child. He will be so ridiculed as he goes through school, and as for the mother if she wants to flaunt herself so be it but don't do that to your child. I do believe in breast feeding, but don't believe it needs to be a public exposure. It needs to be a private and special tme between mother and child. PS

  • Nadi - 7 years ago

    Breastfeeding is for babies, until they learn how to eat. Its a natural process, its nurturing until they can eat other things and get use to them.

  • stormie pollard - 7 years ago

    i think its awesome! if there was a time limit on how long you should breastfeed then your body naturally would run out of milk and STOP making it..... she doesn't breastfeed all day everyday, but he still wants to nurse so let him! i am at 4 months and intend to breastfeed at least till hes 2 and possibly longer if that's what he wants!!!! and if you don't like it or you think its "sick" then maybe you should take a good long look in the mirror and realize as humans grew and started to populate the earth there WAS NO SILMILAC!!!!!! and EVERY person alive today is here because someone in their family an ancestor of course but none the less survived ONLY FROM BREAST MILK!!!!! and if you think its "perverted" then you are the pervert who see breast as a sex symbol instead of a natural to feed your baby! and i don't want my child around someone obsessed with sex and its symbols!!! so your the pervert...... ugh

  • R - 7 years ago

    SICK SICK SICK NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT !!!!! BREAST FEEDING IS FOR GET THIS IN YOUR BRAIN FOR """"""BABIES"""" BABIES ARE NOT TODDLERS OR OLDER CHILDREN. GO SEE A SHRINK PLEEEEEASE!!!!!!!!! FROM A MOTHER THAT BREAST FED TWO'''''' BABIES .''''' AND COVERED UP NOT EXPSOSING MY BREAST TO THE PUBLIC. HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT AN ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR BABIES.

  • R - 7 years ago

    SICK SICK SICK NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT !!!!! BREAST FEEDING IS FOR GET THIS IN YOUR BRAIN FOR """"""BABIES"""" BABIES ARE NOT TODDLERS OR OLDER CHILDREN. GO SEE A SHRINK PLEEEEEASE!!!!!!!!! FROM A MOTHER THAT BREAST FED TWO'''''' BABIES .''''' AND COVERED UP NOT EXPSOSING MY BREAST TO THE PUBLIC. HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT AN ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR BABIES.

  • R - 7 years ago

    SICK SICK SICK NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT !!!!! BREAST FEEDING IS FOR GET THIS IN YOUR BRAIN FOR """"""BABIES"""" BABIES ARE NOT TODDLERS OR OLDER CHILDREN. GO SEE A SHRINK PLEEEEEASE!!!!!!!!! FROM A MOTHER THAT BREAST FED TWO'''''' BABIES .''''' AND COVERED UP NOT EXPSOSING MY BREAST TO THE PUBLIC. HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT AN ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR BABIES.

  • R - 7 years ago

    SICK SICK SICK NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT !!!!! BREAST FEEDING IS FOR GET THIS IN YOUR BRAIN FOR """"""BABIES"""" BABIES ARE NOT TODDLERS OR OLDER CHILDREN. GO SEE A SHRINK PLEEEEEASE!!!!!!!!! FROM A MOTHER THAT BREAST FED TWO'''''' BABIES .''''' AND COVERED UP NOT EXPSOSING MY BREAST TO THE PUBLIC. HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT AN ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR BABIES.

  • R - 7 years ago

    SICK SICK SICK NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT !!!!! BREAST FEEDING IS FOR GET THIS IN YOUR BRAIN FOR """"""BABIES"""" BABIES ARE NOT TODDLERS OR OLDER CHILDREN. GO SEE A SHRINK PLEEEEEASE!!!!!!!!! FROM A MOTHER THAT BREAST FED TWO'''''' BABIES .''''' AND COVERED UP NOT EXPSOSING MY BREAST TO THE PUBLIC. HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT AN ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR BABIES.

  • R - 7 years ago

    SICK SICK SICK NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT !!!!! BREAST FEEDING IS FOR GET THIS IN YOUR BRAIN FOR """"""BABIES"""" BABIES ARE NOT TODDLERS OR OLDER CHILDREN. GO SEE A SHRINK PLEEEEEASE!!!!!!!!! FROM A MOTHER THAT BREAST FED TWO'''''' BABIES .''''' AND COVERED UP NOT EXPSOSING MY BREAST TO THE PUBLIC. HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT AN ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR BABIES.

  • R - 7 years ago

    SICK SICK SICK NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT !!!!! BREAST FEEDING IS FOR GET THIS IN YOUR BRAIN FOR """"""BABIES"""" BABIES ARE NOT TODDLERS OR OLDER CHILDREN. GO SEE A SHRINK PLEEEEEASE!!!!!!!!! FROM A MOTHER THAT BREAST FED TWO'''''' BABIES .''''' AND COVERED UP NOT EXPSOSING MY BREAST TO THE PUBLIC. HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT AN ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR BABIES.

  • R - 7 years ago

    SICK SICK SICK NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT !!!!! BREAST FEEDING IS FOR GET THIS IN YOUR BRAIN FOR """"""BABIES"""" BABIES ARE NOT TODDLERS OR OLDER CHILDREN. GO SEE A SHRINK PLEEEEEASE!!!!!!!!! FROM A MOTHER THAT BREAST FED TWO'''''' BABIES .''''' AND COVERED UP NOT EXPSOSING MY BREAST TO THE PUBLIC. HAVE SOME SELF RESPECT AN ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR BABIES.

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