“I’ll let him decide,” says the mom as she tells the five-year-old why she breastfeeds him.
A mom from Perth slammed online trolls who called her “sick” and “abusive” because she still breastfed her 5-year-old son.
A five-year-old Australian boy is still getting breast milk from his mother.
Mum-of-two Lauren McLeod has a lot of followers on social media because she posts about her real and honest experiences breastfeeding her two kids.
The 29-year-old woman has been criticized for continuing to breastfeed her 5-year-old son Bowie after what she says is the “normal” amount of time.
She has even been called “sick” and “abuser,” which she says is usually because people don’t know enough about breastfeeding and have wrong ideas about it.
Lauren says that because women’s breasts are so sexualized now, many people forget that they are there to feed babies.
“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it a million more times: humans were biologically designed to stop nursing between the ages of 2 and 7,” said Lauren, who has worked as a doula for the past two years. A doula is a trained, non-medical companion for women who are giving birth.
“I’ve been called a “sick nut,” disgusting, weird, gross, selfish, abusing my children, and the list goes on.”
But I really don’t care because I’m doing what’s best for my kids, just like the other parents who do things differently.
It’s not common to breastfeed a five-year-old today, but there’s nothing “weird” or “gross” about it. I’m doing nothing but feeding and soothing my child.” It’s fine for breasts to be sexual, but breastfeeding has nothing to do with that.
“It seems strange to me that people connect the two. I don’t know why you’d make something so natural between a mother and child into something sexual.”
Lauren says that she didn’t “plan” to breastfeed her son until he was five, but that’s just what has worked best for them as parents.
“When I was pregnant with Bowie, I thought to myself that I would breastfeed him until he was two years old,” she said.
“I thought, Well, that’s what the World Health Organization says, so maybe I should do the same thing.”
But as the years went by, the experience was good, so we kept going. I had no problems and didn’t feel like I had to stop all of a sudden.”
The mom said that breastfeeding is good for both her and her child in many ways.
She said, “Now Bowie will just breastfeed before bed, and it’s a great way for us to bond.”
“Milk is full of nutrients and antibodies. It’s a great way to help his brain grow and develop.” When you breastfeed, oxytocin is released and your risk of some cancers goes down.
The mom is so open about her breastfeeding journey online that she admits she could get all kinds of responses to her posts.
But she said that most of the comments she gets are positive. Still, there are some people who take the time out of their day to say mean things.
“Most of the people who follow me on social media are very kind and helpful,” she said.
“But of course, people always have something to say.”
I’m telling my story because it’s the most normal thing in the world and shouldn’t be a problem.
When I see other moms being treated badly, it breaks my heart. It’s so different for each person, and everyone is on their own path.
“All parents do the best they can for their kids.”
Lauren says that she will let Bowie wean himself from breastfeeding when the time is right.
“The experience of breastfeeding is different for every mother and child,” she said.
“For now, I don’t mind at all if Bowie keeps nursing for as long as he needs to.”
Currently, he only nurses once a day, right before bed.
“That could change, but right now it’s working for us. Take it one meal at a time, I always say.