Nineteen months.

That’s how old the littlest turns this week. Which means I’m officially breastfeeding a toddler.

breastfeeding a toddler

Having fed my older two well into toddlerhood I’ve got a fair idea what to expect. And a fair idea what they don’t warn you about breastfeeding a toddler too.

10 things they don’t tell you about breastfeeding a toddler

1. People look at you incredulously when you reveal you’re still nursing. The vast majority of people simply don’t understand what on earth possesses you.

2. Sometimes, in the middle of the night when they’re up for the umpteenth time yet again, you’ll wonder what on earth possesses you too.

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3. People do a double take when they see you feeding in public. Not because you’re breastfeeding in public, but because you’re breastfeeding a child of that size.

4. Muslins are useless. As are any other form of breastfeeding cover. They’ll rip them off and fling them over the other side of the room before you can unclip your nursing bra. And you can’t blame them – I wouldn’t want to eat my lunch with a blanket over my head, either.

breastfeeding a toddler

5. People ask you when you plan to stop breastfeeding. They wouldn’t dream of asking you when you have a newborn in your arms, but now that newborn can climb out of your arms suddenly everybody has an opinion.

6. Your toddler will ask to be fed. They can’t talk (yet), but they can pull at your top with Herculean strength and scream blue murder until they get what they want. Giving the term ‘fed on demand’ a whole new meaning.

breastfeeding a toddler

7. You’ll go through breast pumps. Three of mine have bitten the dust so far – each from a different brand. Not because there’s anything wrong with them, but because they’re simply not designed to be used for that long.

8. Prepare for breastfeeding acrobatics. In the same way they start doing things backwards with one arm and leg in the air, they’ll try it when they’re feeding too. Which can make things rather interesting.

breastfeeding a toddler

9. You’ve got a secret weapon. When they’ve hurt themselves, they’re tired, they’re teething or they simply don’t know what they want, whip them out and all is well again. Magic.

10. You can’t ever imagine a time you won’t feed them. Even though that time must surely be running out.

Did you or your partner breastfeed into toddlerhood? Does any of the above ring true for you? I’d love to hear about your experience!

If you liked this you may also enjoy reading:

Why I gave up my dream job to breastfeed

5 great reasons to breastfeed beyond one

6 things I’ve learnt in six months of exclusive breastfeeding

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