My toddler son is a 'boobaholic'

Posted by David Beard, Globe Staff  September 6, 2008 07:09 AM

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The following is from a Q&A this week with readers by Child Caring writer Barbara Meltz:

Question: My son is now 14 months old. We've had a great breastfeeding relationship since he was born, but in the past month or so, has turned in a "boobaholic." Every time he's around me, he's pushing up my shirt. God help if my breasts are exposed because he will latch on, even if he's not drinking that much. I'm wondering if this is developmentally normal and what it could signal. Is he saying he wants more bonding time? Is he just an opportunist?

Barbara_Meltz: It could be he wants more bonding, especially if there are any kind of changes in the family, or if there has been more separation than usual. It could also just be a stage.

You need to be able to set a gentle but firm limit: "It's not time to nurse." and gently guide him to some other activity that you can do together, including reading a book, or cuddling, if that's what he needs.

It's perfectly OK to let him know that there are good and bad times for nursing. But meanwhile, I'm wondering: Are you ready to be done nursing? Maybe it's time to think about that?

For more from Barbara Meltz's latest chat, click here Barbara's next Q&A with readers is on Monday, September 16.

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About the author

Barbara F. Meltz is a freelance writer, parenting consultant, and author of "Put Yourself in Their Shoes: Understanding How Your Children See the World." She won several awards for her weekly "Child Caring" column in the Globe, including the 2008 American Psychological Association Print Excellence award. Barbara is available as a speaker for parent groups.

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