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If your baby seems to want to do anything, but breastfeed, does that mean that he wants to wean?
Most babies go through periods at different times where they are very distracted when you try to breastfeed. Your baby may be barely hanging on to your breast and playing with your necklace, hair or face. He may be letting go of your breast constantly and looking at someone who is talking or trying to crawl away. He may be contorting himself into all kinds of crazy positions while hanging on to your nipple.
This is normal, developmental behavior. The first time it happens is often around four months. Another typical time to see it is
eight months. It can come and go.
It does not mean your baby wants to wean. He is just very excited and interested in the world around him. Go with the flow. Let him look around, as long as he is not trying to take your nipple with him. Pump and offer some in a cup if you are concerned about how much of your milk he is getting. However, keep offering your breast. Often, taking him to a quiet, dark place to breastfeed will help him focus on breastfeeding. He may nurse fine when he is sleepy.
This too will pass.
He doesn’t know what it means to wean. He doesn’t know that means he will never get to breastfeed ever again. Before one year, it is too soon to wean anyway. Be firm about this. The same way you would handle it if he announces at two years old that he doesn’t want to sit in his car seat anymore. It’s not the last time you will have to overrule something he wants because you know it’s not the best thing for him.
Be the boss. Be his mom.
Andrea Tran RN, MA, IBCLC
Andrea has been working with new families as an RN for over 35 years and a Lactation Consultant for over 25 years.
She has her MA in Health and Wellness with a focus in Lactation.