Even my mom (who was incredibly supportive during those first difficult weeks) has voiced her opinion that I should ween E off nursing because he's turning one. She always says that he doesn't need anymore breast milk because he loves solids. To me, breastfeeding is more than nutrition. It's a few minutes I get to spend exclusively with my baby. It's extremely intimate and comforting to both of us. I plan on doing it for as long and as often as he will allow. Just because he is a whole year old doesn't mean he doesn't need his mom anymore.
Sometimes I get mad and give them a snotty answer. Sometimes I ask them quite calmly how me breastfeeding their grandson impacts them 1800 miles away. Sometimes I say that this is what we're doing and their opinion doesn't affect me (this is mostly true. Mostly). Sometimes I try to educate them by explaining some of the benefits of long-term breastfeeding (lower my risk for breast cancer? Don't mind if I do!) Lately, they have been realizing that my mind is made up and leave it alone after sensing my initial resistance. I am very thankful for this.
The best way for me to handle it is by turning the other cheek. I know that I am doing what I think is best for E and I. As long as we are both happy doing it, there is no real reason to stop. Honestly, I'd rather save the time and energy it would take to heatedly discuss this topic with someone to play with my son. The people who are in my life on a consistent basis know that this is a non-negotiable and will not change my mind. It's all about choosing their battles, I guess.
I'm not sure how much longer we will be nursing. E only seems to want milk at night these days. As long as we go for 10 more days, we will have reached my goal of breastfeeding for one year. After that, it's an added bonus.
Do you deal with breastfeeding criticism? How do you handle it?