Thursday, November 4, 2010

Liar, Liar, Bra on Fire

So... I lied this week about nursing my two year old son. Typically I am a big advocate of normalizing everything about breastfeeding... but because it was my husbands co-workers I froze and didn't boast about my achievement.

We were at his work to show off new baby sister. He has co-workers who have a daughter a month older than Chicken Little and they are pregnant with their second - due to be born just a few weeks after Chicklett. Funny how that lined up... must be something in the water at work. In any event, she asked me how long I nursed Chicken Little for and I replied, "A long time." Not exactly a lie... but I didn't really answer her question either. She went on to say how she had hoped to nurse their first child to two years, but that the child self weaned around 14 months. Feeling silly about 'lying', especially now that I knew she was someone who understood the importance of the 2-years of breastmilk, I backtracked a little and explained that my milk went away around 5 months pregnant so he hasn't had any since then. A little closer to the truth... but still not going all the way. Sure he wasn't getting milk anymore... but he still nursed for comfort atleast once a day and eventually he started getting colostrum (cat nip for toddlers). And the final truth that ultimately I continued to nurse him after delivering my daughter and that he is now getting breastmilk 3-4 times a day.

Sometimes in our society of "12-months of nursing is long enough" it is difficult to stand out and be proud of being an "extended" nurser... not only that... but a tandem nurser to boot! I think had this not been my husbands co-workers I wouldn't have hid the truth. Or maybe if it was just me and the one mother talking privately rather than being at a table with 7-8 co-workers.

I get lots of comments, "That's cool what you're doing, but I couldn't see myself doing it," regarding the tandem nursing. I have lots of online acquaintances of tandem nursers, but only know one or two in real life. I wonder if there is a support group? Ha! I've felt a little alone in the venture (I know you WANT to do it Christa) not knowing people in real life.

Have you ever lied about it? What would you have done?

P.S. I had random silly thoughts about how funny it would be if my husbands co-workers are a fan of this blog and recognized me from pictures so she knew the truth before even asking me. Oops!


  1. lol Love the title. I love telling people that I'm still bfing my 16 month old. I only bfed DS1 to 11 months and a bit and had been supplementing since 4 or 5 months old so I'm very proud to have made it this far and he hasn't had a drop of formula either.

    Can you believe that my doctor told me I could wean him now since he was old enough for cow's milk? I told her that Health Canada (we're in Canada) and WHO recommend 2 years and so that's what I'm aiming for. (Besides which, why would I give a breastmilk substitute instead of the real thing? That's like drinking Boost instead of the turkey dinner that's laid out on the table.) I don't always follow their recommendations but it's handy when people give me a hard time because those giving me a hard time usually do.

    I'm secretly hoping to bf until he's 3, at which point I want to get pregnant again. I'm on domperidone for supply and had a miscarriage a few weeks ago - when I was pregnant, my milk supply tanked so I don't expect to be able to bf through my pregnancy.

  2. Sorry to hear about your m/c. :( My supply tanked when I got pregnant too, but it was enough to keep him happy for 9 months so I won't complain.
    Yeah, I don't even think I've bf my son on front of anyone since he was around 18 months old. During my pregnancy we were down to just once a day, right before nap time -- and even my husband would forget that I still bf him because with hubby's work schedule he never saw us doing it. It's not like I'm sneaking around being shady about it... but no longer loud and proud out in the open like it had been for the first year & half.
    Good luck making it to 3 years! I have no idea when my son will stop, it is totally up to him!

  3. Anna,
    SO sorry to hear about your miscarriage! :(

    Mother Hen, that's a lie, both Megz and I have seen you breastfeed him :D

  4. I am hoping to make it to two years, but don't exactly tell that to my friends. Quite a few of them think going past a year is "gross" and that there's no need for it. I feel that as long as little man and I are both happy, then he can quit when he chooses to. :)

  5. He got hurt at Megz house and you nursed him. Then, right before Lena came, he was desperate for boobie and you nursed him on your couch :D

  6. I'm known for being a research queen, and so always act so surprised when women don't full term nurse, and start spouting facts if they say anything. Plus, I have a really good "wow you're really stupid/you're crazy" look (or so my best friends tell me) that usually backs off the most determined of bullies.

  7. oh, and I also advise to always act "sorry to hear that!" as if you feel great sympathy towards them:
    ie, Your breastfeeding an 18 month old, that's gross, he should be on cow's milk
    Reply: What?! you didn't nurse your child? oh thats so sad, did your milk dry up? were you having problems? you know you could relatch and get your supply back if you wanted to, there are lactation specialists that specializes in that, you know that cows milk is just an inferior substitute for human milk, right? children biologically need human milk for at least 2 years if not longer, that's just the way they are made. And isn't it awesome how human milk protects them from all sorts of diseases, and even has stem cells which protect them from cancer. God sure knew what He was doing when he created momma milk! Next time, call me if you have trouble nursing, I'll be glad to help!
    Lol. see how i tend to spout facts? anyway, if you just start babbling, they get this look on their face, and just back away, and quickly excuse themselves from your presence, lol.
    PS. If you act like you haven't been insulted, they don't get their bully fix, they get very confused/disoriented, and will think twice about bothering you next time. This always worked for me in high school as well with school bullies, lol.

  8. There *is* a support group for moms who tandem and do LOTS of other holistic and green things - the Holistic Moms Network (

    There used to be a chapter in the Twin Cities so I'm sure there are members and others who would be thrilled for it to start up again!

    BTW, I nursed my first through my pregnancy and he was 3.5 when she arrived. He continued to nurse (and even thanked her once for bringing more mommy milk!) until right around his 5th birthday. She's about to turn 4 and without a new one on the way to bring more milk to the party, mama's milk is pretty much gone and she's ok with that.

    Hmmm... other than in my HMN circle of friends though, I'm not very vocal about nursing a nearly 4 year old...

  9. There is a LLL group here in central Ohio that is especially for Toddlers and Tandems, so I take my twins and myself off to that meeting every chance I get :-)

    On a sadder note, I know what you mean about those underhanded "nice" comments. They hurt. I was at a meeting of twin mommas who were getting together to share advice and tips. I asked a question about ways to get my nine-month-old twin B to stop nursing all night long. My answer? "Oh, you still breastfeed? You must be a better mom than I am." Ouch. I wasn't fishing for compliments or trying to show up anyone. I needed advice and didn't get it. Sad.

    But, there are lots of places online to find like-minded mommas and get good support and stories. Thanks for sharing yours!

  10. I've never lied about it, but I've gotten some odd looks and comments when telling people I still nurse my almost-three-year-old. One time I was asked when she stopped nursing and I said something along the lines of "It's been about an hour." LOL the look was priceless. I don't even remember the rest of the conversation that took place.