Well, here I am. I’m nursing a 14-month old. This isn’t a big deal to me. I don’t need an award, sticker or blinged out bra. It is what it is. But the crazy thing is there are more people disturbed at my decision to nurse my kid now than ever before. I’ve heard the dumbest things from friends, family members and strangers who thought I needed their opinion on my boobs and their activities.
The questions mostly amuse me and because I can be a bit snarky, I can be found responding these exact words to these incredibly ridiculous questions.
“You know he’ll never stop right?”
You mean never? This will go on for the rest of my life? How will I eat? Will I be able to take care of my other child? Will I be able to have a job? Go to the movies? How will I ever have a life if he never stops? Someone help me!
“Doesn’t it hurt?”
This question gets me because nursing an older baby ain’t nothing like nursing a newborn. There are challenges with both but if we’re going to play “Who has it worst?” in the Pain Department, nursing moms of newborns win by a long shot. I mean, sure my kid is scratching my boob up left and right but would I really continue if it were THAT painful?
“Aren’t you sick/tired of doing it?”
Hell yes! Lucky me gave birth to kids who don’t sleep through the night at 2 days old and so when my not-newborn baby wakes up, wailing and ONLY wants the boob, it kinda sucks (hehe, see what I did there?) that I’m the only one that can give it to him. But so what, that’s motherhood, am I right?
I never understood why people felt the need to ask this. Why do they care?
“Isn’t he too big?”
Too big for what? A boob in his mouth? How so? I mean, I know my boobs are gigantic and I could see you asking if they were TOO big for when he was an itty bitty thing, but at 25 pounds you’re asking if he’s too big? I find this question perplexing.
“What does your husband think?”
Thank you so much for reminding me that I have to consider my husband in the nursing relationship that I have with our son. For a second I was really worried that our marriage would be at risk the second I continued nursing our child past a year. The good news is, I’m married to a supportive man who told me to nurse when I wanted to nurse and to not nurse if and when I didn’t want to. He’s a great dude but let’s face it: my boobs, my decision.
“What about his teeth?”
He’s got almost nine of them! And I know what you’re thinking. Yes, I’ve been bitten before. It hurt. It only happened a handful of times before my child received enough yelps from me to know Mama wasn’t OK with that. But are you asking if continuing to nurse him will jack his teeth up? I certainly hope not. We’ve already got an impending orthodontist bill from our big kid who at four years old still sucks her thumb.
"When will he stop?"
I never understood why people felt the need to ask this. Why do they care? But because I’m incredibly petty and also a bit immature, I respond with, “Never.” I love to see the look on their faces when I answer this one.
"Is it nutritionally necessary at this point?"
Maybe it is and maybe it’s not. I don’t really know and don’t really care.
" Is there still milk in there?"
Nope. The milk has turned into dust. My baby isn’t really slurping milk anymore. He’s swallowing dust.
" Does your baby still need milk?"
The best person to answer this question would be him and you’ll get your hand bitten off if you told that baby he no longer needed milk. So I guess the short answer is yes, he still needs milk.
Photograph by: Brittany Minor