Weaning Video Series #3: Emotions of Mom and Nursling During Weaning

June 3rd, 2012 by Dionna | 6 Comments
Posted in Breastfeeding/Lactivism, Carnival and Special Series, Carnival of Weaning, Compassionate Advocacy, Feed with Love and Respect, Just for Fun/Miscellaneous, natural parenting, Video/Interactive Posts

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Did you know that depression is actually quite common in women during weaning? It makes sense, when you think about it: when you nurse, your body releases oxytocin and prolactin, two hormones that make both mama and baby feel good.

When you stop breastfeeding, your body is no longer getting regular hits of those feel-good hormones from nursing.

Kellymom says:

One of the changes that occurs with weaning is a drop in prolactin levels. Prolactin, the hormone that stimulates milk production, also brings with it a feeling of well-being, calmness and relaxation. The faster the weaning process the more abrupt the shift in hormone levels, and the more likely that you will experience adverse effects.

So gentle weaning is not just good for babies, it’s good for mamas, too.

Today’s video is part 3 in our series on weaning. In this video, several of my breastfeeding friends talk about the emotions they and/or their nurslings experienced during weaning.1 Once you’ve checked out what these wise women have to say, feel free to peruse some of the resources I’ve listed for you at the bottom. While depression associated with weaning has not been broadly studied, I’ve tried to gather links that may help you come to terms with your own weaning journey.

Resources on Weaning and Weaning-Related Depression

  1. Thank you to the wise and wonderful mamas who contributed to these videos. They are:

    Amber of Strocel.com
    Amy of Me, Mothering, and Making It All Work
    Gretchen of That Mama Gretchen
    Kat of Loving {Almost} Every Moment
    Kym of Our Crazy Corner of the World
    Lauren of Hobo Mama
    Shannon of The Artful Mama

6 Responses to:
"Weaning Video Series #3: Emotions of Mom and Nursling During Weaning"

  1. Love these videos. going through them at great pace as I begin to think about the weaning process for me and my 2.5 yo.

    Did you know, though, that the ad popping up over this video for me was ‘formula for toddlers’??! Just thought you might like to know…

    Thanks for putting together this great series and carnival. Cheers

    • Dionna   CodeNameMama

      I saw that, and I have been working to block it. I’d already blocked every single formula/etc. site possible, including that one, but it’s still showing up. So frustrating!

  2. mrs james

    my baby is 14 months old.i want to wean him but he is still so much in love with breast milk.what do i do pls?

    • Natasha Boss

      I would suggest reading “How Weaning Happens”. It’s a great book with a lot of tips to gently wean your little one. I think the most important thing is to do it gently so that it’s not traumatic for anyone. Good luck mama!

    • Hey, mama. Congratulations on making it to 14 months! That’s a huge accomplishment :-) It’s important that the nursing relationship is mutually desired, but as long as you’re open to keeping it up, there are ways to set limits that benefit both you and your toddler. If you’re set on weaning, then the rest of this reply won’t really apply. But if you’re looking for reasons to continue, read on!

      You could try to set more limits on the nursing while still allowing that relationship to continue. If you’re feeling like you really need to cut out some sessions you can do that gently and slowly, but still allow your little one the benefits of natural duration nursing.

      My twins are 2.5 and we’ve been “weaning” since they first took solids at 6 months, but we haven’t completed the process. I decided to let them decide when they’re done nursing because it’s so important to them, and there are so many good reasons to continue.

      They’ve had fewer colds and only one ear infection because of nursing. When they do get sick, I have a ready supply of perfect hydration for them. Their immune systems won’t be fully developed until about 6 or so, and I love knowing they get that extra protection from me. Also, it’s an incredibly useful tool for tantrums. When they are trying to calm their bodies down but just can’t get there, nursing does help. But the biggest perk for continuing to nurse my toddlers is that it reinforces the trust bond that I’ve worked so hard to build with them.

      Good luck to you, and keep reaching out to communities of mothers. This is a great one!

  3. Jen

    Thank you so much for this information and particularly the video. My second (and last) child nursed for the last time last week. It was our intention to wean. We talked about it and both felt ready, but we’re both sad (seemingly I’m sadder than she is, which is, of course the way I’d rather it be). I don’t remember it being this hard emotionally when I weaned my son, but maybe that’s because I suspected I might have another child. Or, maybe time just makes you forget.

    Anyway, thanks again. Seeing that video made me feel less alone.

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