Mom Goes Overboard With Breastfeeding & It Can't Be Good for Her Baby

Say What!? 254

babyMoms, how many kids would you be willing to breastfeed at once? One? Two? How about breastfeeding three children? That's what mom Samantha Williams proudly announced to the world the other day. Now for the really big news: only one of those kids is a baby.

That's right. Samantha is nursing her 7-month-old. Her 3-year-old. AND her 5-year-old.

At once. Well, sort of.

Despite her unusual breastfeeding routine, Samantha is just like regular gals: she only has two breasts. So while she is doing what's called "tandem nursing" of her baby and two older kids, only two can latch on at any one time. Still, she's trading off two boobs among three children, and they're not triplets.

Is this woman a saint? Or is she nuts? Maybe a little bit of both?

I'm not here to piss in the cornflakes of breastfeeding moms. This is NOT about breastfeeding. At least not about why women choose to nurse at the outset.

But Samantha has put herself out there as an example of what a woman can do with her kids, and I can't help but be a little horrified. Women who extended nurse say they do so for the best of their kids, but her 3- and 5-year-olds aren't the only kids this mom has to consider.

What about her baby? What about what's best for 7-month-old Ethan?

Is it really to have a mother whose body is working overtime for three kids in every way -- not just running after them, but in producing milk? Is it really to have to share this special mom to baby bonding time that the breastfeeding proponents crow about with his siblings? Is it really to have a mom who never gets to just shut off?

That's the part that really gets me. What about her?

Because breastfeeding one kid takes a lot out of you. Breastfeeding three? That's ... a lot of pressure, especially for the mother of an infant.

I'm sure Samantha Williams is a good mom. She's obviously trying. And the photos show happy, healthy kids. But my response to her story wasn't "oh, how cool." It was, good God, that poor woman.

She's breastfeeding three children. THREE! That's a lot of work for a mom, a mom who has an infant at home who needs his mother to have as much energy for him as she can muster.

Adding more kids to your family can be a wonderful thing, but you need to remember not to spread yourself too thin -- because that's not good for anyone, and it's not fair to your new baby.

Have you tried tandem nursing? How did it work for your family?


Image via jared/Flickr

breastfeeding, bonding


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kelly... kelly24019

Hey, here is an idea. Why doesn't the writers of "The Stir" write about things that matter instead of trying to start yet ANOTHER comment war on breast feeding.

Simon... SimonzKedge

I'm currently nursing my 18 month old, and am due in Jan.  My youngest has shown no signs of stopping, so what will be, wil be. 

I've been reading up on it and if I do end up Tandem nursing, there is a good chance that it will help the youngest to bond as well as helps me rest if they nurse together.  So we will cross that bridge once we get to it.

lindy... lindylouwho

To each their own.   If it works for them, good.  It doesn't matter what anyone else thinks.

nonmember avatar MammaMel

@Kelly24019...AMEN!!! I would also add, how about they stop being so freaking judgemental! I can't say I agree or disagree with this woman's (and presumably her husband's) choice on what to do for THEIR family...because it's just that THEIR FAMILY and clearly it works FOR THEM!

lindy... lindylouwho

I'm like you SimonzKedge - nursing my 13 month old and planning to tandem nurse when his little brother or sister arrives in February.  

nonmember avatar Kristi

I think by 5 years old it may be time to stop, but to each their own--her children, her decision. What works for some may not work for others.

onefo... onefootcutiepie

WTH? It's really not your problem how she wants to nurse her kids.

nonmember avatar Cobi

Hm so would you be asking the same question if she had triplets? Would you also happen to know how she's nursing them and in what order? She's probably feeding her youngest first and then middle and then oldest. But I'm sure that didn't even cross anyone's mind before passing judgment. And here's another crazy thing, if she's willing on doing that then maybe that's what she enjoys. Not everyone needs to go out and perhaps this is just one of those things she enjoys to do for her children. So yes you are passing judgment on breast feeding with tantrum nursing. Lets talk about things that can affect people instead of a mother tale of how she raises her kids :)

Caera Caera

Oh, gross. She's nuts.

Simon... SimonzKedge

Oh, and normally older kids don't nurse as often as babies/toddlers (unless sick or stressed).  She even stated that her older two only nurse a few times a day/week, which is how kids self wean usally.  So that's not really a huge deal, is it?  Even now my toddler only nurses about 3-4 times a day, but I think that has more to do with my low pregnancy supply than anything. 

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