Updated: Oct 9
Using physical objects to help with day weaning
See that scruffy looking teething necklace in the photo...that was my physical crutch for day weaning!
I'm a mum, and a doula, that believes in trying to do the best possible for babies, but I know that life is real, real real!
I am incredibly fortunate that, with the help of Lia Segall - Lactation Counseling Bangkok, I was able to continue breastfeeding my daughter until she, and I, decided to self wean when I had a minor operation, she was 3 years and 5 months.
BUT prior to this life sometimes dictated that she couldn't always yank mummy's top down and shout "boo boo", not to mention the fact around 17 months old mummy was starting to get busy with work and doulaing . I needed to gain control over when and where she would breastfeed.
Pa ha ha ... after 17 months of free flow "boo boo", whenever and wherever she wanted, she obviously had other ideas. I also started to feel real guilt, breastmilk was the one thing that I had said she could always have, and that I'd never ever restrict her, and here I was letting life get in the way ... was this right?
So I spoke to Lia Segall - Lactation Counseling Bangkok for advice. She was so lovely (as she always is). She spent the time on the phone to put me at ease, to explain (as she always does) that breastfeeding is only right if it is right for both mum and baby, and clearly it wasn't 100% right for me anymore, so she agreed, actually she recommended, that I put some changes into effect, so that we could both continue to enjoy the times it was OK for me to breastfeed.
She recommended finding a physical cue that I could teach my daughter. A cue for when the "booby bar" is open.
I chose our favourite teething necklace.
It took three days to make it work, but it really wasn't that difficult to implement.
Day One: make sure you wear or hold the object every time you breastfeed. Make sure your baby plays with it and is conscious of its presence.
Day Two: Put the object in obvious 'hiding places' (really obvious) and every time they ask to feed I tell them to find the object - make it a fun game. When they find it and give it to you breastfeed as normal. Again making sure they play with it and are conscious of its presence.
Day Three: Throughout the day hide the object in places that became harder and harder to find. Every time they ask to feed once again tell them to find the object. As the day goes on make it impossible to find. The aim is that by the end of the day they are simply shrugging their shoulders (that super cute shrug they do) and walking away, happy to do something other than feed.
To prove that this really really did work, I can also tell you that we had a case of HFMD just a couple of weeks later. I reopened the "booby bar" 24/7 and wore the necklace 24/7. When she was well enough to go back to day weaning I put the necklace in my pocket. She came to me a few times for "boo boo" as was to be expected, but each time she walked away with just a little shrug because we didn't have the necklace.
And just like that I had full control of my "boo boo"
If you want to get control of your Boo Boo then you can pick any object that works for you. The necklace worked for me as it fitted in my pocket (and secretly, it was also a little reminder that I could rub between my fingers when I was away from her for work, a reminder that mummy is working hard to be the best mummy she can).
For a consultation to discuss anything from breastfeeding, weaning from breastmilk or weaning on to solids, contact Kathy @ Empowa to arrange a call back.