The Time Magazine Breastfeeding Cover — What Do You Think? : Exclusive Renegade Health Article

Friday May 11 | BY |
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time magazine breastfeeding cover
What do you think about this?

These two pictures have caused more outrage in the last 24-48 hours online than just about anything I’ve seen in the past.

The search terms “time magazine cover” and “time breastfeeding” are trending to the top in Google.

What you see above are two images of moms feeding their 2-4 year old children. (if you were having trouble figuring it out… LOL.)

It’s hit the Internet with the viral intensity of a celebrity death.

The article inside the magazine, which I’m sure is fantastically interesting, features Dr. William Sears who promotes attachment parenting — so now you probably understand the drive behind it. This type of parenting is similar to the Continuum Concept taught by the late Jean Liedloff. A book I’ve read and am quite interested in practicing with our child when it (don’t know the sex yet!) is born.

As soon as this cover and inside images were published, Americans were polarized.

Some so ashamed, like ABC’s “The View,” that they blurred the image of the breast from the cover when they reported on the story.

Others on Facebook felt it this beyond gross…

“This is gross! What is this kid 4? He has teeth is ready for school. You’re disturbed if you still breast feed your child at this age. Nasty asses!”

Some thought this was the end of the world…

“wtf has this world come to!!!!”

(I hope I don’t need to spell out WTF for you…)

Finally, some thought these images were just what the world needs…

“The only thing disturbing is that people are offended by a mother feeding her child, no matter what age… Why everyone forgets we are mammals is a mystery to me.”

I have some opinions about all this too, since I’m about to be a father in July, but I wanted to hear from you first…

Your Question of the Day: What do you think about these images? And to take it even further, what do you think about a mom breastfeeding a baby at 3 years old?

Live Awesome!
Kev

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog RenegadeHealth.com — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.

149 COMMENTS ON THIS POST

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  1. It’s a shame pictures like this aren’t commonly accepted. Yes, we are mammals, and the natural weaning ages of humans is somewhere between 2,5 and 7 years (when we loose our milk teeth, makes sense, doesn’t it?). I still breastfeed my 3 year old twins and I honestly think it will take a while before they selfwean.

    How could milk from another mammal be better for human children? Breastmilk is free, tastes different every day (gives babies and toddler a great introduction to different flavors!) and lowers the impact on the planet (no packaging, no transport, no big industry,…).

  2. Lene says:

    being a mom myself, I am an advocate for breastfeeding. I think every parent has their limit on when is too old. Once my children turn around 10 months I become uncomfortable feeding them around others. I feel it is in respect to them as well as to myself. I have no problem if you would like to nurse your child until the age of 4, however, I feel it should be done privately. There are social manners and it is found offensive after a certain age, just as making out with your partner should be kept in the bedroom. As much as I love and believe in breast milk, I am not interested in watching you feed your older child publicly. if you would like to feed them breast milk while out, we have alternative sources. Pump and bottle it up for those occasions!

  3. JimSayersCNC says:

    Breast feeding is highly recommended until the child is 18 months of age which is still longer than what most moms will do so. Feeding beyond infancy is seen in nature as well. A mother feline will continue to breast feed its kittens long beyond what is seen as normal if she has not become pregnant with a new litter. I had a cat breastfeed her male kitten for 2 years. He was larger than her and still feeding. Get over it people we are animals an as such are part of nature.

  4. Ronda Mohr says:

    I breastfed all four of my children, up to the ages of 12-15 months old. I definitely support breastfeeding as the best way to feed infants. But in my opinion, it is for infancy…not toddler-hood. If some want to do it up to age 4 because it’s what they think is best, then fine, but please do it in private! I would feel uncomfortable seeing a 3 or 4-yr old child breastfeeding in public.

  5. Brenda says:

    I think this is so good, why should a mother feel uncomfortable, this is a baby’s birthright.
    I know breast milk is so powerful, it contains five glyconutrients, and that says a lot.
    It contains so much more.
    I am all for it.
    Flowing mothers make flowing children, they grow up well, and solid..

    Go mothers go..

  6. Anna M Karola says:

    I live in Africa so I decided to ask my secretary what she thought. Her reaction was, “oh yes. Many mothers breast feed their children until four years of age. Breast feeding is a good thing.” Interesting as we in the West are likely to be upset at the image presented as we do not have the same cultural values. We are ashamed and afraid of our bodies and tend to reflect these attitudes and tend to sexualize many things- probably because in many ways we are highly repressed as a society. It would be most interesting to take this image and see what the reaction was from women in various countries.
    However Time reached its goal — I can imagine this issue is selling out. And given the tenure of American schools and the tendency for bullying, I hope the boy is a skilled fighter or a child with very high self-esteem.

  7. Theresa says:

    People get so bent over things that are just really none of their business. On the other hand, putting it out on the front cover of Time magazine makes it peoples business, kind of shoves it in your face. I love breast feeding and did it will all 3 of my kids. There are physical, emotional and psychological reasons for doing so for both the mother and the child. Life is a tricky and wildly polarizing thing and I would like us all to lighten up. These moms are taking the time to be present with their kids in a way that is just not emotionally available to many in the US. We as humans have so many bizarre beliefs that natural events are just not thought of as natural. I like to give families space to be what they want to be. There is room for growth and new ideas in all of us, lets learn from each other and stretch those belief systems. Take a breath, it’s OK. :^)

  8. I agree with Lene…How does that boy “survive” in school? Is he home-schooled? Again, what these moms want to do in the privacy of their own home is their business. However, when does it go from normal “motherhood” to something sinister? Just wondering. I think that when a child is old enough to talk and feed themselves, it’s time to give up the boob! What do we think when we see an older child still sucking on a baby bottle or with a pacifier in their mouth?
    Just my opinion. I’m sure that these mothers are lovely people.

  9. VJ says:

    I think breast feeding into their 2nd year is really inportant for the child because this is the year they get mobile, eat dirt and suck on just about everything. Their immune systems are being built but they can also have a few gastro illnesses. No need to fast from milk/formula- just keep feeding and supplying antibodies. However they need to learn there is a time and place. Have a “special mummy place” and teach some modesty. Don’t confuse a behavioural problem with a weaning problem

  10. Rocio says:

    We are funny/crazy people. Breastfeeding is natural and beautiful. To have that picture on a front page of a TIME magazine is crazy..”the art of breastfeeding” is a gift from God to the mother and to the child. The picture is almost offensive to me, not because of the “age of the child” but because of “the attitude” of the mother ..almost like you could read her heart. Nursing your children is more than providing “food” to a creature; it is a bond in hearts..and only God can guide you to know when you child is ready to stop and then you do it..naturally!..can’t explain it ..just like love or forgiveness..it is so sacred! really it is the best gift I have given to my children and the best gift The Lord have given to me! If you are a man or you have never breastfed ..sorry but it would be very hard to understand. The beauty is we don’t have to. Once we come to the place of freedom to do what is right in our hearts t because of a higher purpose
    In this culture we apologize for not giving our children McD “happy meals”..for not drinking Mountain Dew, for buying organic produces instead of Walmart’s endless shelf-life products, for talking about God – in a FREE country,..and also for mothering our children. O well, I know the connection I have with my children, it all started the day we had them! not giving them 10 minutes of “Quality Time” a day..but by being willing to go against the “NORM” and just be the best mother the Lord has called me to be, for His glory and our joy.
    love and blessings, Rocio

  11. Hubert says:

    I’m afraid this is one of those vicious circles our culture is in. The very reason people are embarrased and against is the very fact that they were not (enough) breastfed. Reason for that is the ever widening gap between nature and culture. Mothers are getting more and more unable to breastfeed. So the only way out is pioneers (like the circle of Renegade Health followers) who dare to get back to nature and who will face violent opposition and misunderstanding. Be prepared Kev/AnnM. 🙂
    Humans will have to get a more natural lifestyle of disappear from the planet. So my blessings to the pioneers.

  12. VJ says:

    Didn’t quite answer the ? Also depends on maturity of the child. Some still need it at three.

  13. Melody says:

    I think breastfeeding is a beautiful and natural act. I don’t think mothers should have to hide to breastfeed their children. I do think it is polite for a woman to be discreet while doing so in public because a naked breast flashed about is still an uncommon distraction.
    I also consider it appropriate to wean the child as they gain independence in other areas such as walking, talking, toilet training, and eating solid foods on their own.
    While it is a tender and understood sight to see a woman cradle and feed a helpless baby, I was personally shocked to witness a toddler run into a room (it was a woman’s meeting) and lift his mother’s shirt and demand a drink. The women nonchalantly allowed junior to show the entire room both of her breasts as she continued her conversation. To each his own, but I would have been more comfortable if the mother had handed her child a glass as he was more than capable of holding one.

  14. Gen says:

    I am all for breastfeeding and I breastfed my daughter until she got teeth and we both knew it was time to stop. Three of four years old is a bit much.

  15. Shelley says:

    Children develop at their own pace. If a child is ready to wean, they do. If they aren’t ready, the still nurse. You can’t make a child breast feed for longer than they want. And it can totally vary within the same family. I had children that self-weaned at 3.5y,18m, and 2y.

  16. Regina says:

    I had 4 children and breastfed 3 til about age 10 months. My last child was different, she breastfed until 3 years old. The doctor said to let her be and I did. However, if asked to be on the cover of Newsweek of any other publication I would decline. This is a special bond between a mother and a child and should not be of visual interest to the world. Writing about the subject would be appropriate…end of story.

  17. Kathryn T. says:

    I am an advocate of breast feeding, but it is the attitude in the photos that I object to – and the ages of the children. Even “native” cultures discontinue breast feeding younger than this. If this had been found as a photo on the internet, the government would be out there looking for this “deviant” mother, and saying it was some form of “sexual child abuse” because of the pose and attitude! An infant, up to ages 2 to 3 is one thing, but this seems to take it a little far.
    Still, I believe in freedom of the press as well, so they have the right to publish it. And I am sure the controversy is selling a lot of magazines – just what TIME wants – so for them it is a “win-win” situation. Controversy can be good – let us see whether this one goes to extreme (it most likely will).

  18. You know what is REALLY DISTURBING… some moms feed their kids formula out of the sake of convenience. And do you know what is even wore than that? Some moms will give their 2 to 4 year old kids juice boxes filled with all kinds of synthetic flavors, colors, and preservatives. Now that is SICK!

  19. Michael says:

    Hi!
    Rocios comment about following ones heart to know the will of god is so beautiful and pure.

    Many blessings to you
    MIchael

  20. Pat says:

    I am a strong advocate of breast feeding and therefore have absolutely nothing against how long a child is breast fed. If we can drink goat milk and cow milk for life, what is wrong with a four year old still sucking. If I have any reservations about the photograph, it is the fact that it is done publicy.

  21. Teresa says:

    Breast feeding is certainly a beautiful gift, to women and to their child, especially in our fast paced world, it requires mom to STOP and sit with her child in arms. It has a number of great physical and emotional benefits for both. However, these photos do not portray what I just described. These photos are in your face women modeling a form of breastfeeding that I have not seen before ( and I have known many breast feeding women over the years). The women that I have seen breastfeeding their toddlers, actually some I haven’t seen them do it but know they do (because it was a special mommy child time for them) , still sit with child in arm, cradling, holding nurturing the child, with most their breast covered ( it’s called modesty). Unlike these pictures where the women are standing, baring all that they can and not even looking at their children ( yes, I know they were posing, but shouldn’t the picture portray how it is done, mom gazing into child’s eyes with love, not just sticking it out there for him or her?).

  22. christa says:

    I am upset that in 2012 there is still an issue over breastfeeding at all – there are still places that don’t allow it in public no matter the age of the child. I breastfed 4 children – all weaned at different ages from 18 months to almost 3….usually the older child only nurses when they are hurt or tired. There are many other issues people could and should be acting upon (health care – war – the economy – gmo’s etc.)

  23. Amber says:

    Not my place to judge others. I was told by a nurse once, and would be interested to know if it is correct, that at some point the breastmilk loses it nutritional value and antibodies. I breastfed as long as I could but that was at around 14 month. Would have probably bf longer had I not had to go back to work. And pumping is not fun and such a hassle at work!

  24. BarbaraL says:

    I have always felt that breastfeeding was of ultimate importance and a most beautiful thing which I unfortunately missed never having had children. That said, I think these pix are arrogant and confrontational. The woman instead of looking lovingly at her child is in your face at the camera with what looks to me like an indignant attitude. How long to breastfeed is an individual and private matter, but WHERE to do it is also a private matter calling for discretion lest it be . This to me looks smug, pornographic even, and a betrayal of the beautiful thing that it is, to sell magazines by being provocative and crass.

    The subject should be exposed to public view but not the private intimacy of this sacred bond between mother and child. I am very saddened by this unscrupulous expose of something profound and fundamentally holy! Believe it or not, I consider myself a left liberal! This is the kind of thing that makes us look like crazies.

  25. BarbaraL says:

    I left a word out above, I meant to say lest it be fodder for small minds.

  26. Jane says:

    I believe the average age worldwide for stopping breastfeeding is at age 7!!!!!!!!! In the west children are lucky if they get 6 weeks – so you can imagine how long children are being breastfed in other parts of the world. I am sad that some folk get so upset about what is natural!! I breastfed my son until he was 3, though after about the age of 2 we did it privately just because it did start to feel private – not at all shameful. However sometimes the boundaries need to be pushed in order to educate particularly right now as in the west there is alot of nonsense about where women can and cant breastfeed in public places.

  27. Linda says:

    If babies were allowed to breastfeed until they self-wean, I suspect we’d have a lot less mental health issues with kids than we do. It was quite normal, and common in previous generations in many cultures, and still common today in some cultures, to nurse children until they wean themselves anytime between 12 months or so until three, or even five years old.

    By the time a child reaches toddlerhood, nursing is more about comfort and bonding than it is about nutrition, but they still gain beneficial immunity from many illnesses, and gut-strengthening factors from nursing past infancy.

    It’s perfectly natural, and normal to breastfeed past infancy. It’s a sad commentary on our culture that so many people are offended by a this beautiful way of nourishing children. There are a lot of real, and serious problems with how we as a culture raise our children that no one seems to raise an eyebrow at. Sad commentary on our culture that this is what people get all up in arms about.

    I’m offended by seeing kids with soda pop and sugary fruit juices and drinks in their bottles. That, to me should be shocking and controversial, not something as healthy and perfectly normal as nursing a young child.

  28. BarbHanna says:

    Breast feeding was so good in so many ways for my 3 children. I put my son through some very difficult changes and so continue nursing him until he was about three. I think it gave him comfort and the ability to withstand moving around the world, among other things.

    My daughters had a much more stable early life. The elder was ready to stop at 22 months. I wanted to stop nursing her since I was due to have my third child in three months.

    I arbitrarily also stopped my youngest at 23 months because I felt I had been nursing forever. She was not a happy camper with that.

    All three are now adults and happy competent good people !

  29. mel says:

    I have three kids and bf them all. I let the babies decide when to quit. #1 stopped at 6 months. #2 stopped at 18 months. #3 stopped at four years old. I thought I had her weaned when she was 3, went out of the country for a month, she restarted on my return for an additional year. You can read your babies ques. Its good for mom and baby, so if it’s possible to let the baby decide and mom doesn’t resent it, I could even see nursing a child older than five, but the circumstances, both mom and baby have to want it, and not in public like these photos. If you go past two years, I would only nurse at home. It’s nobody’s business. Don’t be surprised at all the advice you are offered without asking for it!

  30. Suzette says:

    I think they are brave Ladies advertising for God and nature and that it is an odd anomolly when normal is a cow feeding a baby really. However it is my thinking that once we can eat food and drink from a cup it is time for mum to get her body back and up to her if she’s ok with it or not.

  31. Randall says:

    I have 4 kids, my wife breast feed all of them to 4 4 and half. of course at 2 and beyond it becomes a more nuturing thing for comfort or night time. I think people who have issues with it, is more a reflection of our sick society and have bought into the idea that breasts are for mens pleasure or a sex object think. Of course the magizine article puts pictures out their, not many women would choose to breast feed in this position, as it would not be very comfortable. This is how mamuals raise caring offspring. My wife and I have had issues threw the years with our children and their choices, but all of them would not harm a fly and are loving, caring people

  32. Brianna says:

    I think it’s great. If a mother is comfortable enough to breast feed her child(ren) passed 2, it’s definitely in the better interest of her child’s physical health. The difficult part, obviously, will be dealing with the emotional/psychological ramification of a judgmental society.

  33. This is an awesome debate. The fact that it is such a shock to so many, and there is such aversion to something so natural and wholesome shows how removed we are as a culture from the true norms of nourishing ourselves and our children. I do like the pictures. I breastfed my daughter until she was 4 and it was very spontaneous and natural, I might be on the phone or doing chores and not necessarily giving her my full attention. And when it was time to move on we could talk and laugh about it and how she was a big girl. She’s 30 now and there seems to be no detrimental effect on her physical or emotional health..Gutwise there have also been benefits – she has traveled to many countries where people normally pick up gut problems, and never had a problem, where as I was not breast fed and have a very sensitive gut in those same places.

    I find the aversion to breastfeeding sad and the disgust that people are expressing even more upsetting. I agree with the previous comments, that many of the emotional problems kids have these days stem from the lack of real intimacy and contact between parent and child. It begins with breast feeding. When my daughter was in high school 50% of the kids her age were on some kind of drug for depression etc…I heard it is even more now…

  34. Bryan says:

    As one can read from participant’s experience of being interviewed for an article, what they said and how it was quoted in an article may be far astray from each other. The topic (breast feeding past infanthood) being set up with posed images of women looking at the viewer in a confrontational manner with children who are no longer babies is such a set up. If the country/internet is loud and polarized over this, then they are the real boobs here. Wake up, wake up, for everyone’s sake WAKE UP!! People are getting mentally tooled all the time by media for all sorts of reasons, and most of them are not for the good of the person who is listening/watching. What I find disturbing about this is that people are getting manipulated with stronger and stronger inputs and they still don’t ask fundamental questions like, “If this brings up an emotion in me…why is that, what does this remind me of…if I was not feeling this before I heard/saw this what is the presenter trying to convey to me/the audience? Do I really care, or do I feel like I was manipulated to care? Everyone has an agenda, even I do by writing this….people need to stop and ask if they buy in to the agenda before they swallow the whole deal. Breast feeding is natural and it should be up to the mother and child to figure out when it is time to stop, which as a father of two tried my patience at times. I got over it.

  35. Frank Jensen says:

    Breastfeeding is a vital and important function that every mother should always choose in stead of replacements. The mother’s milk transfers her immune system to the child and lends lifelong protection. This process is completed within the first year of the child’s existence… To continue breastfeeding is no longer about the child, but solely about the mothers. It is becoming some kind of addition, desire to remain thin, or psychological problem. These women need psychological therapy. Simple as that…

  36. Ian says:

    I think breatfeeding is a veru positive & wonderful experience for both child & Mother. Especially in the early days of life, the colostrum is essential for the child’s development in every way into the future. Breastfeeding is beneficial & can continue as long as Mother is comfortable with it, usually when childs teeth come into the picture is a good time to stop. I am all for breastfeeding as opposed to bottle feeding (as nature intended) While I think it is a natural & normal part of life, I am not for people doing it in an “in your face” manner. Normal discretion & respectable space for all parties/observers should be implemented. I do not like the cover pictures as I think they are tacky. Can we not celebrate something without flaunting it?…..

  37. Elizabeth says:

    I think the pictures are obviously meant to be shocking, and the copy says these women have been “driven to extremes,” so it’s pretty clear that the writers and editors at Time feel breastfeeding to the age of a toddler is extreme – not normal. It disappoints me that there seems to be this bias. I’d rather see an article that objectively examines (1) the nutritional benefits, if any, of breastfeeding into toddler years, and (2) the psychological/emotional/developmental effects on children who are breastfed longer as opposed to those who aren’t.

    From a nutritional standpoint, I don’t see how breastfeeding longer could hurt anything, but if we had evidence it helps build stronger bones or something – that it had any physical development benefits – that would be great for mothers to know. And then there’s the emotional/psychological part. There might be a case to be made that it could cause a child to have an unhealthy amount of attachment to a mother, or on the contrary, it could be emotionally beneficial for a child’s development. I don’t pretend to know any of this, and I’m child-free for life, so I don’t need to know. I would leave that to childhood development experts. It would be nice to see an article like this explore this topic without a bias, but I can tell from the outset that there’s a bias and sensationalism, so my inclination is to dismiss the article outright.

  38. ktmm says:

    Reading through the comments provides no surprise to me considering who your audience is. And congrats by the way!
    I breastfed my daughter until she was about 18 months old and she was the one who decided to stop. I think the pose of the women in the pictures is deliberate to get people to talk and think about it. I think the defiant stance is to “throw it in the face” of people who forget that this is perfectly natural. I applaud them. The thing that I find sad is that most of the women that are breastfeeding are “middle-class” whereas the people who really could benefit the most are the poor. Instead of buying formula, breastmilk is totally free, but the women below the poverty line are not provided with the education or the support that breastfeeding requires. I think THAT is the issue that should be addressed.

  39. Yvonne says:

    I definitely feel that breastfeeding is very important and should be encouraged but I find these pictures offensive and arrogant. As some others have said, it does not portray the intimacy that a mother and child have when breastfeeding, at least any I know or have seen. I have no problem when mothers breast feeding their babies in public and its done discretely. After a certain age, when its no longer the only source of nourishment for the child, I feel it should not be done in public.

  40. Frank Jensen says:

    When to Start Foods

    If this thin, watery stuff called milk is so good, when do you need to start feeding your baby “real” food? This is a difficult question to answer. Recent studies have shown that hydrochloric acid – used to digest most protein – doesn’t even appear in the stomach until the end of the seventh month and doesn’t reach a peak until the eighteenth month. Coincidentally, 18 months is approximately when rennin – used to digest the protein in breast milk – has disappeared. Also, it seems that ptyalin, the digestive juice for carbohydrates, doesn’t appear until the end of the baby’s first year. (The earliest books on baby care always recommended that mothers pre-chew any solid food.)

    http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/george_wootan.html

  41. Christie says:

    Babies are born with a need to suck and they outgrow that need at different ages for each child. A mom nursing a 4 year old is just meeting her child’s needs.

    I think it’s fine and normal to nurse a child, even a 4 year old. No one would say boo (or at least it wouldn’t make the cover of Time) if they saw a 4 year old with a binkie. It’s that it is the breast, being used the way nature intended (instead of selling beer) that gets everyone all in a tizzy.

    It’s easier to understand once you have had kids, though. I remember being shocked at a mom nursing her 1 year old when I was pregnant with my first. Now I think one is so young- they are still babies. And in the early days of nursing, I think I would have lost it if I thought I had to nurse for four years.

    In short, the best parenting advice I got was, “if it works for you and no one gets hurt, it’s fine”

  42. Dorothy says:

    I nursed my daughter until she was four and there was nothing dirty or gross about it. That time together was beautiful and bonded us even more closely. It was pure and innocent. She wasn’t nursing for nutrition – it was more for comfort and both of us loved the closeness and connection. My daughter is now 23 years olds and we have a wonderful, close relationship. She remembers those days with warmth and love. There will always be people who need to judge and show their disapproval and that’s their choice. In the end, it’s their loss – they’re missing out on all the beauty life has to offer. Regarding the TIME cover – I think the way the women and children are posing does not show any bonding or nurturing – the expression on their faces looks like they are doing just another household chore. In reality, moms are usually snuggled with their child, gazing lovingly in their eyes. I think TIME wanted a reaction form the public and choice these photos for just that reason.

  43. One for All says:

    All of this is simply people’s “Opinion’s” On what they think is appropriate for THEM to see. A mother breast feeding a child to the age of 10 isn’t wrong or 8 or 3 or whatever age. It is a natural and healthy bonding between mother and child – it is US who is SICK in thought and we have to analyze OUR discomfort. To judge a mother breast feeding a child at whatever age is absolutely no different than making ANY judgement towards ANY THING we judge about another person. We make constant judgements which we should really look at within ourselves. Judging a mother breast feeding her child to the age of say 6 is no different than making a judgement about a person’s weight or if they are bald or have one crossed eye.. it is ONLY a JUDGEMENT which if we were all compassionate and evolved enough we would not find this “Sick” or disturbing at all. We have to stop projecting our thoughts and judgments onto others. It is simply a very bad judgment to say when to stop breast feeding a child because it is healthy for the child at any age – even for the father (yes) the husband to ingest the mother’s milk.. is that “sick” I am sure alot of people would say so but people pay HUGE bucks for Cholostrum and that is from a COW!!! LOL! Why not take what is natural and human?? Think about it. I see absolutely NOTHING wrong with breastfeeding in public. You can do it discretely with a towel over the breast and feed your child quietly. Please look within where we make judgements and try to change that first instead. PEACE.

  44. ken says:

    i think the first pic is very posed and that in it self makes it feel a bit off ,where as the second one is more “natural” looking and it does not bother me ..I think breast feeding is very important and it should be up to the parents when to stop but I do think there is a danger of the mother being in denial of her reasons for continuing ..I am not saying all but for some it could be there own problem of not letting go ..I think like everything in life there is a balance and you need to find that..if it does continue till they are older than there is a problem of teh child perhaps being open to criticsm from other kids so that is always something to bear in mind the parents are adults if they can deal with people being agaist their decision fine but the childs feelings need to be thought about

  45. Frank Jensen says:

    In other words- to comment on my last post – after 18 months the needs of the child are no longer served… only that of the mother…

    Another common psychological process is that often a mother experiences a psychological problem, when a child shifts it attention from the mother to the surrounding world. In some women this leads to a desire to replace this undivided attention. This is often done with another child – hence the very common difference in age in siblings.

  46. Marie says:

    I am not against BF’g, I did it for a short while. I, myself, would think that 4-5 yrs is a bit much! It is indeed a blessing from our Creator, to be able to nurture our children in the manner HE chose for us. God bless the women that are ABLE to successfully do it!

    I believe that modesty IS called for, and the two pics do not show it!!

  47. Julie says:

    What an interesting array of comments. While I chose to end breastfeeding at 13 months, it was my Lamaze instructor who challenged my pre-set notions as to age of the child. She continued to beastfeed her daughter to age 5 against all the admonitions and scoldings of family. Her daughter later went on to graduate from Harvard summa cum laude.

  48. PJ says:

    I agree with the comments on the attitude and pose of the pictures, which are totally off base and obnoxious. Keep to the subject and stop trying to make money sensationalizing something that is private.What is private should be kept private and not vaunted on the cover of a magazine for all the world to see Moms should use common sense. Kids, themselves know when to wean. I have breastfeed 7 children. Most of mine started weaning at a year and i was done by 16-18 months or, so.. I say I , because my milk supply went dry, as it is supply and demand. You cannot tell me that these women are even producing milk anymore.

  49. Pat Everhart says:

    I think children past 6 months should be weened from the breast. What is the mom going to do go to school at lunch time and feed her kid with her breast? Or just keep him/her home schooled so you can do whatever it is you want.Come on people! Who likes it more the child or the mom? This could be called molestation…sorry, but at that age that’s what it looks like to me. What are all the pediphiles going to think now and their are female peds. I’m not against breast feeding but there comes a cut off time–we have enough mama boys and girls as it is.

  50. Margot says:

    I breastfed both my sons till they were 2 years old even in public if I really had no choice.
    Only then I sit in a quiet place and cover my brest. Not with the attitude like these models.
    I agree 100% with Teresa!

  51. Rachel says:

    I agree with Teresa in post 11…I couldn’t have said it better myself! <3

  52. Christina says:

    I agree breastfeeding is so very important to the baby for bonding and health.However to stretch it beyond a year and a half to 2 years is more the mother’s need than the child. After breastfeeding for a year and perhaps switching to a bottle of goats milk(the nearest to mother’s milk) can be just as nuturing and bonding if mother love is there.By that time, nutritional needs were met and a child goes on to get their nutrients from solid food. Even in the animal kingdom, mothers kick off their babies at a particular time to stop their nursing, but continue to bond with them.

  53. louie says:

    My wife breastfed our kids.
    I’m 100% with it.
    That said….

    Not at three years old !
    There is no nutritional need.
    This is more about this mom’s psychological issues and her desire/need for attention.

    Along with Time magazine’s attempt for sales/attention on shock value.

    As far as the photos themselves.
    For goodness sakes, they’re pre-school age.
    IMHO it borderlines on really twisted.

    Hey…You asked.

  54. Sharon says:

    Breast feeding is how babies are supposed to be fed. Age should not be an issue. Personally I don’t think this Time cover is in good taste, but some people have a warped attitude about the natural use of the human breast.

  55. arnold zimmerman says:

    This is exactly what we need to see in America. Whether we like it or not, we live in an America that is certainly not one America, as we are so often told. Like no other country before, we live in a homophobic, racist, puritanical, hypocritical society, where the squeaky wheel gets the most traction, regardless of how harmful or ridiculous the message. It is all about the breast, bosom, decolletage, nipple, etc. This is exactly what women should be doing and for as long as they deem necessary. In such a societal construct as ours, where a video of a dog and here suckled pups has to have her nipples obscured, this picture should be on every dollar bill in circulation.

  56. Patricia says:

    I totally agree with PJ and most of all the women who have commented and Frank Jensen. I hope Kevin that AnnMarie does breastfeed your new baby when it comes. As far as breastfeeding in public, that is a culture thing that we gotten away from and would be good for our children if we made it a “natural” thing again.

  57. Faye says:

    In a world where almost every time we see a movie we see butts and/or boobs and hear the “F” word in every other sentence, why should people get so bent out of shape over seeing a woman breast feed her baby, regardless of the age?
    I think breast feeding is an important and healthy part of raising a child, and a decision as to when to end it is between the mother and the child. I also feel if people are offended when seeing a mother breast feeding older than normally aged children, it might be done in a more private manner. This would be common courtesy.

  58. Satyana Love Lotus says:

    I find several things upsetting about Time’s cover. First, the fact that Dr. Sears is being sited as “a guru” of attachment parents. This style of parenting is based on human instinct and has existed for as long as humans have. It was not invented by Dr. Sears, nor is it some kind of parenting trend. It is based on human instinct. Mothers and babies are hard wired to be responsive/responded to, breast feed, share sleep, etc.

    Secondly, I hate the caption “Are you mom enough?”. This is obviously designed to be inflammatory. I refuse to engage in mommy wars. Women need to support each other, not bicker over a magazine which is clearly designed to provoke emotions and get us worked up.

    For those who are uneducated about the natural, “normal” age of child weaning, you should check this out:

    http://www.kathydettwyler.org/detwean.html

    To sum up a major point, the “normal” age of weaning lies between 2.5 years and 7 years. Basically we don’t know, because forced weaning and formula use is so prevalent. And so profitable!

    We, as a culture, NEED to see more pictures of women breast feeding in the media, but not in this context. I feel this cover was designed to parade this woman as a freak or as “the other”, instead of showing breast feeding as normal. Breasts are designed for nurturing children. They are constantly displayed as sexual objects on magazines and nobody bats an eyelash. Show them as anything other than objects designed to arouse men and that is when you hear about how “offensive” breasts are. It is necessary on a biological level for breast feeding to be done publicly. Because it is a right brained activity, you need to see breast feeding to be able to do it properly. Women do not need to be told to have a “special mommy place” to breast feed, because there is absolutely nothing sexual about breast feeding. People use their mouths during sex, does this mean that mouths are inherently sexual or is that a secondary purpose? Should I wear a bag on my head when I eat in case I offend someone? Considering how low breast feeding rates are, I think more people need to see it happening. It needs to become culturally normative, because it is biologically normative.

  59. Patty Cason says:

    As a mother of kids 22 and 21, I can say that I did breastfeed both children till they were 3 and 2. Both of them decided on their own time and I obviously spent quite a bit of time tandem nursing…of which my OBGyn said I should stop. (I ignored him and listened to my heart and LLL. So glad I did!)

    I think the reader Rocio said it beautifully and I can’t say it better.

    Nursing a toddler is different. For me, it was such a bond and gave the child a huge sense of security. I could look into their eyes and the world would stop. Knowing I was providing the very best for my child was immensely rewarding.

    At age one, my child was bitten by our dog. He had massive laceration to his face. One the way to the emergency room, the first thing I did was to nurse him. Face a mess, bleeding, etc. When we arrived at the hospital, he was actually quite calm. I’m sure there was a shock factor there, but I also think that the ability to nurse him gave him a huge sense of security. After surgery, I was told to stop nursing. I ignored this and that was the first thing I did. I’m so grateful that I did not miss out on the following two more years of nursing, because this is what this child choose.

  60. Linda Perkins says:

    In other countries it is very common to see older children still nursing. It is part of God’s plan and how children for thousands of years grew up. It is true the attitude on the faces of the women is a bit intimidating, but hey, maybe that was the intent–to get attention. Why have we strayed so far from our Creator’s original plan that this should be an issue? Why am I called a health freak because I try to eat only organic and natural whole foods? Why are people so surprised because I don’t take pharmaceuticals? I think it is a sad day when people freak out over a child breast feeding, which is God given and the most natural, healthy and balanced food you could give your child.

  61. Elizabeth says:

    What is strange to me is that so many comments have said that breast feeding your child into their toddler years is perfectly normal and what everyone SHOULD be doing, while the people who find this offensive and are judgemental towards it are the sick ones. It seems to me like judging people who don’t breast feed into their toddler years is just as bad as judging people who do. I agree with everyone who said that it’s a natural thing that is up for the mother to decide. I don’t think there is a right or wrong way to nurse your child since every family unit is different. With that being said, since everyone has different beliefs and attitudes towards breast feeding, it seems like it would be most respectful to show modesty in public places and try to only breast feed in the privacy of your home. My mother did not breast feed me at all, not even once, and people have her a really hard time about it. I still excelled in school and sports, graduated from a good school with honors (UCLA) and I’m one of those rare people who never gets sick. I also have an incredible relationship with my mom and can honestly say she is one of my best friends. I’m NOT trying to demonstrate that you shouldn’t or don’t need to breast feed, but simply that we shouldn’t be so hard on women for the choices they make in parenting their children since there is no guarantee that one practice versus another will result in a healthy or unhealthy child.

  62. laura says:

    It’s not the breastfeeding that’s the issue, it is the sexual insinuation that is the attention getter. The shock and awe must have been their intent which is a shame. Breast feeding is needed to assure the child have a good immune system. The longer she feeds the child the better. Breasts are beautiful, but our culture has made everything to do with the body a big sexual deal and it is a shame. Look at the beautiful African tribe of ladies in the movie Babies and the matter of fact process of breastfeeding. It is us that have the problem because society has corrupted our beliefs abut our beautiful bodies. Let’s see natural mother’s milk vs plastic bottle warmed in microwave of man made formula?

  63. cindi says:

    i agree with Rocio…. it was beautiful what she said…. i did not breast feed any of my 3 children because it was not normal in my family… i did not know anyone that did it and did not know how vitally important it is.. i am sorry i did not do it…. and it is true the problem is with society… they need to go back to basics and see what is natural and right… we do not teach those things to children in the mainstream and we need to… every mother needs to know how important it is and not just being told by someone at the hospital after she has her baby… she needs to know before she ever even thinks about having a child… then it will feel natural to her and that is what she needs for her children…..my opinion

  64. cindi says:

    Patty…. even tho i never nursed i am sure u are 100% right that by u nursing your child after his injury was very calming for him and he needed that…. i am glad u realized and did it… God Bless….

  65. rod says:

    magazines do the most interesting things to increase their sales… essentially this is what the cover image is intended to do – don’t think that it’s anything other. they really don’t care what we think!!! and who better than the american public to “eat” this stuff up.

    it’s a tragic state that we are in where something as beautiful and natural as breast feeding our children becomes a matter of contention. for that matter the fact that anyone’s personal choice, when not inflicting harm on another being (human, animal, insect, or our Earth), falls in the purview of another persons critical opinion.

    the true horrors should come from the fact that in america people choose to feed their children chemically infused, pesticide ridden, nutritionally void “food” and still dare to balk at this image and label it as offensive.

    grow up people and realize that we are an immature society. look deep inside and begin to fix the matters that cause separation in us. let’s love and forgive ourselves first so that we can know how to love and forgive everyone else.

    but then again – this is simply the way that i feel and offer nothing other than compassion and empathy because i was once in those critical and opinionated shoes before. it feels much better on this side.

    in peace…

  66. Rebecca says:

    Although I am a huge breastfeeding advocate and love Dr. Sears and try to practice attachment parenting which I think is best for both mom and baby.. I’m not sure these pictures portray the true intimate relationship that breastfeeding is supposed to be. It almost looks like they are saying, “look at me I am breastfeeding and there is nothing you can do about it” I also agree with extended breastfeeding, but I’m not so sure I’m comfortable with a 5 year old breastfeeding. It makes me wonder how these pictures will effect these children later down in the road…

  67. Sarah says:

    I am 57 and I breastfed both my children. It sure was a different time back then. We were living overseas because of my husband’s job and that meant we had to fly a lot to g on home leaves etc. These were often 14 hour flights. Back then, I was not allowed to fed my children in the “public” of the plane and had to go sit in the airplane bathroom (ugh)to feed them. Worse, they didn’t have those fold down changing tables on planes and to change their diapers, I had to do the best I could in the plane bathroom and their little heads often were touching parts of the toilet where men had, well, missed. Mostly I felt like a pariah. So I am happy to see that breastfeeding is so much more accepted these days. However, I find the Time magazine cover offensive. Not the age issue of the article, that’s a personal decision, but the defiant posed look of the mother and the challenging “Are You Mom Enough” title. That title, in particular, is offensive and lacking in compassion to all the women out there who would like to be able to breastfeed their children but can’t. For a variety of reasons, including undergoing cancer treatments, many women cannot breastfeed. I don’t intend to buy this magazine becasue of it’s confrontational stance.

  68. Brooke says:

    As a breasfeeding advocate, I say this is perfectly fine and I encourage all mothers to use their bodies for what they are made for – to breastfeed. I think all mothers should be in tune with themselves and their children to know when to stop. Sometimes that is before 1 years old and sometimes it is after 4 years old. As a libertarian, I say do what you want as long as it doesn’t infringe on my rights. Breastfeed if you want to, or don’t, but don’t discriminate against others who aren’t doing what you think they should be doing.

  69. Janet says:

    Americans view breasts as objects for sexual pleasure, which creates the issue and controversy here. Eliminate this sexual association, and there is no issue. All three of my children were breast-fed until each initiated its cessation, each at a different age. I nursed discreetly in public places; amazing how uncomfortable people became with this and offered me a place to ‘hide away.’ But then again, is there any another society outside of the US in which six year olds are suspended from school for ‘sexual harassment’?? The media bombardment with sexual images and innuendo has resulted in an overwhelming and inappropriate obsession with sex and a major disconnect from Nature, all to our greatest detriment.

  70. Lorraine says:

    Of course these pictures are confrontational and in your face, they are challenging the widely held, narrow minded belief that breastfeeding is ok only in private and only up to a certain age. These pictures are staged so that we know, without doubt, that these mothers are saying ‘screw that’. I doubt they usually breast feed in such a way so you are missing the point if you allow these pictures to offend you, they should be applauded. I breast fed in public, discreetly, without any breast visible but it still evoked strong negative reactions. These pictures say ‘I’m not wrong or embarrassed to give my children what they need and is best for them’. Both my children weaned themselves at the age of five. But long before this age they were only feeding at bedtime. Both are unvaccinated and enjoy great health; both have only ever had one course of antibiotics and they are now 16 and 13 years old. Neither are clingy and both are confident, articulate and bright. There is no better nutrition for health and no better comfort when they are ill or distressed. Anyone who thinks of breastfeeding as something sexual is psychologically damaged!

  71. Bravo moms and lucky kids.

    Not ok to feed a kid breast milk at 4 but perfectectly ok to feed them coke, cow’s milk and juice boxes?

    In native populations, kids are breast fed for at least 4 years and often until 7.

    Lactase the milk sugar digesting enzyme begins to decrease a little at age 2 (when kids will normally breast feed less and rely more on solid food for nourishment), but the most significant decline is betweent eh ages of 5 and 7.

    Is mother nature wrong?

    I think it’s awesome for Time to take such a chance and show this. Of course i have not uet read the article to determine if it was in favor or criticizing breast feeding. And are these the real moms or models?

    While I certainly agreee that the posture is not the ideal breastfeeding position – I rather enjoyed gazing into their eyes as they ursed, still it got attention.

    As someoneabove wrote,more shocking and sick to me is the pics of kids with milk moustaches and juice boxes!

  72. Sonja says:

    I nursed my first child until the age of 3. At that age it was at nap time and then because he and I were ready, I weaned him. My second child weaned herself at the age of 2 1/2. I did what worked for me and my children without any outside influence and there was nothing wrong or gross about it or me.

    At the time I had heard the global age of nursing was age 7. What we are now comfortable with because of current food production and the American culture of independence doesn’t have anything to do with if it is right or wrong to breast feed young children.

    I don’t think it was a good for the cause of breastfeeding for Time to throw this picture in the publics face that way. It only confirms attitudes of those who are against it and it is children who wont get breastfed who suffer.

  73. Nina says:

    My son just turned 2 last month and is showing no signs of weening, I only intended to breastfeed untill he was 1, but now I have decided to let him stop when he’s ready, I know it’s good for him, brain health included and the benefits last a lifetime so I’m not gonna cut him short of any of those benefits. On a side not I’m so excited for you and Anne Marie you 2will be beautiful informed parents:)

  74. Nina says:

    My mother had 9 children we were all breastfeed I was one of the older ones and only got 3 months of breast milk the youngest weened herself at 6 years old some ween around one year but it’s not common babies should be aloud to ween themselves

  75. Have friends who nursed their children till 4 or so. All of their children are very bright, succesful and well adjusted. They were nursed at home and not in public. Breastfeeding is a personal choice, nosey people keep your opinions/judgements to yourself. Moms have a right to make choices.

  76. Alice says:

    Unfortunately, when I gave birth in the early 60’s they did not instruct you in breast feeding so I got a shot to dry me up and I bottle fed. Wish I had breast fed but you don’t know what you don’t know. I feel that it is up to the individual situation and NONE OF OUR BUSINESS! We don’t know the dynamics of each situation so why are we sticking our noses into it? Nuf said….

  77. kitten says:

    I wholeheartedly agree with 15 Linda and 16 Jane!

    I nursed my son until he self weaned at 3 years. The child will wean when they are ready. Most people do not even know how to properly nourish themselves and yet criticize what is healthy and beautiful and as nature intended.

    Yes, the cover is controversial and does a great job of starting a conversation!

  78. Judith Beck says:

    I LOVE these Images! It’s about time that we all recognize that Women’s Breasts are PRIMARILY for feeding our young! The BEST milk is a Mother’s own human milk. I imagine that by age 3 and 4, children are also eating
    whole food – hopefully plant based (vegan) and even Live/Raw! BUT children love to drink milk. The best is Mom’s own! So what is the Problem? Our Society’s Conditioning! I LOVE to see women feeding their children from their breasts. Usually they are quite discreet in Public, but ought we not be discreet about eating food whenever we are out in public?
    Women need NOT feel uncomfortable feeding a child in public! I certainly hope we women all get over the shame that society taught us.

  79. Noelle says:

    As a mother, if there is one thing I could tell any soon-to-be parent it is this: You will get advice thrown at you from every angle on how to feed, parent, educate, etc. Do your own research and do whatever works best for your family and your child. Don’t let the general public, who has no vested interest in your child, tell you how to raise it. That being said, all of us in the natural health community know that breastfeeding is one of the most wonderful, healthy, natural things we can do for our child. (it’s free, too!!) If you want to breastfeed for 6 days or 6 years….all your OWN choice. Other posters are right, modesty is the key. Unfortunately in our society, breasts mostly exposed at formal events like the Oscars is fine, but nursing your baby, where even worst case scenario, one small portion of the breast is exposed is offensive. Even though this is the most natural of acts and we have no problem watching little kittens and puppies doing the same thing. I am quite sure that TIME did this merely for it’s self indulgent publicity effect….not for the sake of news worthy topics. Sadly, no different than much of the news media these days. Kevin and Annmarie – having a child is such an awesome, life-changing event. The love is beyond anything you now know. I am so excited for you!!!

  80. zyxomma says:

    I am not a mother and never will be. The Time cover is posed to get attention, with the subjects looking straight into the camera. It has certainly gotten attention.

    As to weaning age, I have no experience. I’m childless and was fed formula (first cow, which I vomited, then soy, then goat). However, years ago I was having tea at a local diner with a friend and her then-four-year-old daughter, who was eating soup. The subject of our conversation was nutrition, and the little girl piped up, “I still nurse!”

    All these years later, the young woman she has become is a stellar student and a well-adjusted human being. Too bad there aren’t more of them.

    Health and peace.

  81. Cam says:

    my sons were breas fed babies, which means they received the best food-fuel available for human babies … I LIKE the cover page TIME published and wish that more women would breast feed their babies; unfortunately the social climate in America is governed by Big Corporations….if only people could understand the differences between greed and natural.

  82. nina says:

    The Time cover definitely got everybody’s attention, but I’m not sure in the best way.
    I breast fed my two children – a very long time ago. However, when the teeth came in, it was difficult at times. I think the thing I like least about breastfeeding the 4 year olds, and older, is the child walking up to the mom – say at home, but with lots of company, and yanking on her. Then, creating quite a commotion when the mother says not now, or later, or whatever she says. It seems that with a child that age, or older, there needs to be some understanding of how he/she is to behave in such situations.

  83. Teresa says:

    I think the choice of how long is up to the parents but the pictures on either magazine are inappropriate and give breast feeding a bad name! I am embarrassed for the children in these pictures and how are they going to feel when they see them not so many years down the road.

  84. Brandi says:

    If only everyone were to read this article about the positive breastfeeding culture in Mongolia. http://www.drmomma.org/2009/07/breastfeeding-in-land-of-genghis-khan.html

  85. Sara says:

    Clearly this has hit a nerve lol as someone who has had both sides of the opinion. Here’s what I think more people should know….if you aren’t a mom yet-you just don’t get it. 2. It’s not exactly fun to have a toddler climbing around to nurse-for those who say the mom has some weird problem and it’s for her personal enjoyment-really?! You should be better informed. 3. I never thought I would nurse beyond a year-but I did and am thankful bc I know my daughter was healthier and more secure bc of it. 4. An anthropologist wrote a brilliant piece on primates and how-based on our human physiology-we are MEANT to nurse until 2.5-7 years old. It’s not about what it culturally acceptable, that’s the way we are designed. Toddlers don’t nurse 24/7. And the milk dapts to the growing needs of the toddler-heck if formula companies have a toddler formula where did they get the idea? Breast feeding is a gift, it’s miraculous what the body can do and is a perfect food for a growing child. Why are people so intent on shaming these moms? I applaud them for putting their lives out like that. Maybe it will help another mom who doesn’t have much support.

  86. Gayle says:

    If we could all see nature for what it is and the beauty it provides we would all be better off.
    I nursed three children the last one until the age of 3 1/2. I never thought that I would nurse for that long but it was natural and loving and exactly what he needed. Each person needs to do what feels right for them.
    We are mammals and breastfeeding is why we have breasts.

  87. Irene says:

    I produce milk, at bed time for my 5 year old. At bed time she grumbles, Boobies, B.O.O.B.I.E.S. BooooooooBies. We clean up, read a story and I fall asleep for a few hours. I wake up naturally in the middle of the night, milk the goats and go back to my own bed.

  88. ana says:

    Im a mom of 6 and breast feed during the 70’s and 80’s. Had home births and don’t immunize. It was challanging sometimes. The wic program wrote In my file “that i was unwilling to cooperate” because i wouldnt wean my child before 1 year. It was a man telling me this.Lol.. I think breast feed as long as they need within reason. If their in middle school and wanting to breast feed that might be too much. By the time their in high school they will probably be too embarrassed to feed any longer. (just kidding) The picture on the magazine was alittle weird. Perhaps that was what they were going after was the shock value to instigate conversation surrounding the topic. It was a forced picture not a natural setting. Little militant with kids camo pants. Maybe this kid will not want to go to war because he had moms boob for as long as he wanted. I think breast feed as long as mom and child want. We do not need more “monitors” telling us what to do. Men are so obsessed with “boobs” perhaps its a lack of getting “boob” when they were little. More boobs less war!

  89. Many of the readers have expressed correctly.
    In Evolution Theory,the purpose of br feeding is unique and important only till 1 or 2 yrs or till teeth appear, or even just before that.
    No animal goes on giving br fed milk to kids.
    All infanthood creatures drink milk of mother or any other milk.Man alone drinks milk(cow’s milk)even after crossing infant hood. THIS PICTURE HAS NO DISCUSSION POINT. IT HAS A MESSAGE. IT DISCOURAGES THE NUTRIENTS OF MOTHER’S MILK BY BRINGING A KIND OF HATRED FEELING BY LOOKING AT THE PIC. IT IS A PSYCHOLOGICAL MISSILE ON WOMEN, FOR SOME SPECIAL PURPOSE WHICH WILL BECOME KNOWN LATER ON PERHAPS. WE CANNOT MAKE A GUESS. THEY MAY BE BRINGING A BABYFOOD SUPPLEMENT. THIS IS A MANIPULATED PAID COVER PIC TO CREATE AN OFFENDED FEELING TO HOLY MOTHERHOOD.
    There is no element of look of love and affection of mother and child in the pics.
    There are other elements visible thru the pic, like that of the Master Mind behind this, and the empty mind of the woman in pic.

  90. Irene says:

    The reason I have continued to nurse my youngest is because it really does raise their IQ creativity and memory. I can pump myself full of Omega 3 and astaxanthin and non radioactive Iodine and she doesn’t have to swallow a pill. It helps me too. Nursing for me is like a sleeping drug and same way for the kindergardener so it only happens just at bed time. There is a giant difference in her from my other children weened way earlier, in her confidence, she isn’t a homesick type of child, she speaks confidently to adults and is independent at most things, except driving the car. The major difference I can verify is that the longer I nurse the closer to genius level their intelligence gets. Bonding, yadda yadda, the longer one can breast feed the more equiped the next generation will be. It’s true in goats, dogs, people…

  91. Alice says:

    A second thought. Has anyone thought about what has been done to the child on the cover of Time?
    What was once private is now out there FOREVER.

  92. esther says:

    “breast is best” “eat at moms” – familiar pro breastfeeding slogans – i breastfed my son 14 months, he weaned himself, the last month was 1 feeding/day and it was the first one in the morning – so sweet, crawled into bed, nursed and cuddled for 15-20 min, perfect start – then he just stopped, that was 1972 – my daughter nursed 3 and half years, called it “yum yum”, my mother was aghast, could not relate and thought it was so inappropriate – i could only respond, if i lived in a third world country she would probably nurse til 5 or 6 years – i sent her off on a camping trip with her dad and brothers to wean her, as i had gone back to school and needed more time for myself and schoolwork – one of my la leche league leader/friends breastfed her children til 5 and voiced her opinion on my not letting my daughter choose her own weaning time – breastfeeding is one of the most significant and natural ways a woman can show and share her divine gift of mothering –

  93. lisa says:

    great article in response to this stupid Time piece: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lisa-belkin/no-i-am-not-mom-enough_b_1507550.html

    and from a midwife friend of mine: “Time should be ashamed of themselves for their provocation and attempt to pit women/mothers against each other. This article is a well-reasoned response.”

  94. Junilla says:

    Some young children have a very strong need to connect closely to Mom longer than other children. One needs to take into account the true needs of the child for proper development. The needs of the Mom also need to be weighed into the equation. Sometimes we grow weary with the close attachment. One of my children nursed until age 4. I am now 63 and looking back I believe I was doing the absolute best thing for this daughter. One very important thing about weaning is doing it in a loving way with the least amount of trauma for the child.

  95. Trinka says:

    I truly think some Americans need a trip to any “tribal” people where prolonged breast feeding completely natural and actually used for birth control. Our “civilized” customs are for the most part absurd and unnatural. People think I’m the crazy one for thinking like this, but I say,”GO TIME”!

  96. Mia says:

    I saw this on GBTV. I think breastfeeding is awesome, but who stands up like that to breastfeed with their kid on a chair? The way they are posing and staring at the camera is what bothers me. The kids look kind of old too. But I have to admit it attracts attention which I’m sure the magazine was aiming for.

  97. marcia says:

    Hi everyone,
    I breastfed my children for approx 20 months each. In my humble opinion, it is to a large degree a decision between mother and child, but the mother must question her motivations if she continues to breastfeed beyond what her intuition is telling her. I have seen mothers dread lifting their t-shirt for their toddler, and I have seen mothers use the breast as a way to settle down an upset child. I think that it may hinder the child’s emotional development if the breast is used for such reasons. I believe a young child needs to learn about emotions by feeling them and I also believe a child starts to become independent and needs to be allowed to let go of mommy to some degree. Sometimes I worry that mom’s try to shield their children from hurt and upset too much. I am almost always there for my children, but sometimes I need to let them figure things out and sometimes I am too tired or drained to give them more of myself and I have to say no to them to preserve myself. When I stopped to breastfeed my toddlers, I knew that I was feeling like a slave to them and needed to stand up for myself. I cried, but it was the right time to gently wean them. They were ready for it too!

  98. michelle says:

    It is very interesting how much has been stirred up by this Time cover,I saw it yesterday on an extended breastfeeding on line group that I am part of,I am presently still feeding my 3 and a half year old daughter and find it very sad that people would judge my meeting the needs of my child so harshly,yes at this stage it is mainly for comfort however my milk is still a source of nutricional and immune support.As previously stated you start out feeding your little newborn and you continue to meet their needs,all children are individual and some need to feed longer than others.I have to say that I feel the cover image is intentionally provocative-the positioning of the mothers and children does not look comfortable or at all usual,and the headline,I fear will only further set up the us and them between mothers.I understand the mother on the cover was herself breastfed until 5 so obviously feels strongly,and I imagine Time would not get the same reaction if they featured the photo of a Mom sitting down with their child feeding stretched across their lap. well it has certainly brought extended breastfeeding into the public eye ! Wishing you both all the best with your new baby.

  99. Cardencopy says:

    As a mother who allows my children to self-wean (for my son, this was past his 5th birthday; my daughter is nearly 3 1/2 and still happily nursing), I could allow myself to feel enraged at people who criticize a normal and beneficial practice. Society should be *thanking* women who follow their biological imperative and nurse their children full-term. But, instead, I laugh, thinking of how silly and ironic this outrage is. The people who are shocked and critical are ignorant of the historical and anthropological facts — humans are *designed* to thrive on human milk for up to 7 years, the age at which we typically stop making the enzyme needed to digest lactose. The sucking reflex needed to nurse is very specific and necessary to successfully extract milk from a breast. A child whose body is ready to wean can no longer suck properly. An adult cannot do it at all. The body speaks for itself.

  100. Hello says:

    Congratulations on your upcoming baby Kevin!

    As for breastfeeding, I totally agree with Frank. I think a child should be breastfed until about 2 years old or if the child self-weans earlier, that’s fine too. But after a certain age when breast milk is not nutritionally necessary, I think weaning should be encouraged. FYI I am not a mother.

    I also agree with whomever mentioned breast sexualization. In some third world countries, it’s completely scandalous to show some leg but breastfeeding is perfectly normal and commonplace. At a short breastfeeding lecture I attended, the speaker mentioned how a few years ago there was this baby doll coming out for children that came with a flower that could be attached to clothes so the child could pretend to breastfeed. Apparently, it was very scandalous and labeled as a sick kind of child abuse. I guess people thought it was more normal and healthy for children to fake bottle-feed their dolls.

    As for third world countries, a much smaller percent than one would expect actually breastfeed their children. Even if they do breastfeed their children it is not as long as one would stereotypically believe. Here’s a New York Times article link that discusses this. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/23/opinion/23kristof.html?_r=1

  101. Nicole M says:

    I breastfed my kids until they were 4.5 and 4 years old. Along the way there were moments that were warm and nurturing. But there were goofy, silly, exasperated, and just plain humdrum moments as well. It is much like any other human interaction in that there will be a variety of emotions and contexts experienced by the mother and child as time goes by.

    As to the image, it doesn’t bother me. But I do not doubt that the editors chose it in hope of getting a strong reaction in order to sell more copies. I believe the actual article was more about Dr. Sears.

  102. Hello says:

    Frankly, I don’t know why anyone would want to breastfeed that long anyway. I remember when I was about 3 or 4 years old, I saw my mother breastfeeding my baby sister. I asked my mom if I could try her breastmilk, and she let me. As soon as I tasted it, I immediately spit it out; I thought it tasted nasty, and I couldn’t understand why my sister seemed to like breastmilk so much.

  103. tieta crerar says:

    After the invention of baby formula, breastfeeding become unnatural.

  104. Laura says:

    I breastfed my second daughter 2 1/2 years and at 25 years she is a happy, healthy, very independent woman. We joke that she’d still be breastfeeding if I hadn’t forced the weaning, and the only reason I did force her to stop was because her brother was about to be born and I didn’t want to be nursing two children, although many women do nurse two at once.

    Her brother only nursed for 18 months and I was heartbroken when he stopped but he was just too busy to want to sit and nurse. He was like “give me a cup and I’m out’a here!”. He, too, is a healthy, independent man now at 22 yrs.

    My first child was only breastfed a few weeks and she is now the nursing mother of a 19 month old baby.

    Every baby is different, every mother is different. I see nothing wrong with nursing for as long as both are comfortable, if that means 5-6 years, well so be it. ITS NOT ABOUT SEX! ITS ABOUT LOVE! Shouting that because it seems our sex obsessed society is viewing nursing as a sexual act.

    Hey, I’ll give 10 to 1 odds that Angela Stokes-Monarch nurses Oria into toddlerhood…

  105. OneMystic says:

    I am a mother of two and breast fed both my children. My husband’s father was breast fed until he was 5 years old. It used to be very common to breast feed children until they had a full set of teeth for grinding food and they could feed themselves. Many children years ago were breast fed to a greater or lessor degree until they were between two and three years of age. It is not uncommon in a number of cultures or in families for children to be breast fed supplementally until they are 4 or 5 years old like my husband’s father was by his mother. Many mammals/species breast feed beyond the point where the animal is able to forage for food and feed itself on its own. Humans are all to quick to judge based on preconceive ideas or what a society considers “the norm” before really giving any thought or do any investigation or research on a subject. I find nothing “right” or “wrong” with a mother breast feeding her toddler when the toddler is between 2 and 5 years old. Research has already shown us that breast feeding enhances the immune system and health in a number of ways and is far superior to formula feeding. I’ve never seen a bread bush or a pasta tree in nature nor have I ever seen any mammal in nature shopping at a store to buy formula to feed its young at any age! Whatever happened to “fresh is best” and “mother knows best” based on nature and innate instinct? Perhaps if people returned to a more natural way of living and a less processed or heated, beated, treated, chopped, diced, sliced, colored, flavored and preserved packaged food diet and way of life we would experience better health, less dis-ease and greater harmony with nature.

  106. Jeni says:

    Hi Kev

    I think its high tims that breastfeeding was bought to the forefront in an effort to get more mums breatfeeding instead of using that awful formula stuff.
    The posing and composition of the photos could have been better.
    Most mums would sit down to feed their kids and would not do it in such ‘an obvious way’. a flap over the childs head on some clothes makes it more discreet if you are out for a long day and need to feed the child.
    These mums in the photo are saying ‘I’m gonna feed my child no matter what you say or where I choose to do it’. (The photo does not need to send that kind of message at all.)

  107. mae says:

    I don’t think that the pictures are appropriate, and do not belong on the front page of a magazine.
    But I did breast feed my daughter 18 years ago until she was 18 months old. I would have liked to have breast feed her longer but I gave in to the pressure to stop. As the child gets older it is not so much about the feeding as it is a psychological issue. Here in Canada the La Leche League promotes breastfeeding as long as the child wants it.
    No one takes offense to an older child sucking their thumb!!!!!! Which can actually be more harmful especially to the formation of the teeth and mouth.

  108. Annette says:

    First of all, Congratulations Kevin and Anne-Marie…I missed the “Becoming Parents soon” announcement, and I am delighted for you both. New healthy parenting, wow, this will be a joy to witness.
    Now to the magazine cover…I find it humorous, or more particularly some of the comments.
    I look at this and think…HHmmmm….
    Moms and their parenting choices are “coming out of the closet”, how refreshing.
    I remember breastfeeding in a bathroom, because there was no “public space” available and acceptable for breastfeeding.
    Personally I chose to stop breastfeeding at one year old, although I had friends who breastfed until 5, and I must say, that 5 year old is now graduating and has lived a “normal teen-ager’s life.
    Thanks for posting Kevin, I don’t catch all the news, and this was a fun one.

    2012..good bye old patterns, hello new choice…freedom of choice that is ‘not behind closed doors”.
    As the world turns….what’s next?
    Have a fun-filled week-end of Light-ness.
    Annette

  109. Karen says:

    I think that a mother (and child) can and should make their own decisions based on their own needs, personalities, circumstances, etc. Anyone else dictating on this would be akin to dictating how often a couple should have sex and in what allowed positions.

  110. Phil says:

    The sole purpose is to sell the brand via shock, à la Benetton. It’s a cheap ratings grab.

  111. Christine says:

    These pictures are beautiful and so exciting that Time has published them.
    Anyone offended by these pictures ought to put a blanket over their heads so they cannot see them.
    I breastfed my children until they decided to stop – for my 4th child that was about 5 years old. My child was way more important than the opinions of others and I did NOT CARE what anyone else thought. He is now 17 – is a loving mature wonderful and healthy young man.

  112. Philip says:

    I think it is a perfectbility natural thing to do, even in pubic. The mother should have some decency and cover up abit though. The kids in the photo’s seem abit old though.

  113. Shannon says:

    BF is a natural thing. I agree to some extent about the poses-I was shocked when I saw them. But if mum and child feel right about feeding until they are older, then that’s great.

    I do know someone who remembers BF at age of 4 and this is a traumatic memory for her-so it’s V important to listen to needs of child in the matter.

    I am just 3 weeks away from having my 1st bub! I will def. breastfeed! I hope I will be the kind of woman who will be out and proud about it, but have a feeling I will do it in public, but a bit discreetly. Our society is one weird cookie to make us want to hide such a beautiful event…

  114. Del says:

    Reading the comments here, I was startled by people commenting about breastfeeding “discretely.” Why? That’s what breasts are FOR! Why on earth should women have to be discrete about doing what is natural, just because this society is full of unnatural obsessions with breasts? If more women breastfed openly, and were comfortable about it, maybe people would realize it’s normal, and get over the silly hangups about it. I hate seeing women ashamed of doing what is normal and natural.
    As far as how long to breast feed, I think that’s totally between the mom and the kid, and NO one else. I have no more problem with a toddler wanting to be breastfed than I do with one who is nagging for an apple, both need to taught to not fuss loudly about it, but other than that, it’s none of anyone else’s business. I’d MUCH rather see a kid being breastfed in public than being given a soda or candy. It’s a shame that giving a 3 year old fast food is appropriate, but nursing is considered weird. I’d like to see that reversed 🙂 I can keep dreaming about a sane society…

  115. Annette says:

    This article was not about the benefits of breastfeeding, irrespective of what they said……it was only about money….selling their magazine.

    The images were published to be provocative. They don’t care how long or if women breastfeed…they only care about selling their magazine and getting their name out there….which they have succeeded in doing. Brilliant marketing! Someone deserves a payrise!

    Human breast milk is made for human babies. Cow’s milk is made for baby cows. Dogs milk is made for baby dogs.

    My philosophy when I breastfed my babies was (and still is)…minimum 9 months total breast milk, with absolutely nothing else (9 months in the womb receiving Mum’s nutrition and 9 months out receiving totally Mum’s nutrition) and then breastfeed until the child weans itself. My firstborn..a son, weaned himself at about 2 1/2 years old and my second child, a daughter, weaned herself at about 18 months (disappointed about that!) but they both “knew” when they didn’t want to breastfeed anymore. My 25 year old daughter is doing the same and her 8 1/2 month old is so happy and healthy. 🙂

    As long as the child’s welfare is put first, it doesn’t matter, in my opinion, if the child is weaned at 2, 3, 4 or 5……and society needs to rearrange its priorities and stop looking at breastfeeding as the abnormal way of feeding and start realizing that foodless food that comes out of packets and cans is the abnormal way to feed the body.

    End of rant!

  116. Charlee says:

    Dear god….let’s just hope the government doesn’t start regulating breast milk!!!!

  117. LynnCS says:

    Breast feeding is normal, but these pictures are offensive in their “in your face” presentation. They do no one any good, least of all the real mothers and children who need to be supported in their breastfeeding acceptance. Wish the magazine had thought it through and used a gentler format.

  118. Christine says:

    I breastfed my older daughter until she was almost two, and my younger one is 27 months and still nursing. I strongly believe in breastfeeding, but I feel that these images were not tasteful.

    There are many things in life which are beautiful and natural and yet do not need to be on the cover of a magazine.

  119. Nick says:

    What is disturbing is how backwards and uncivilized we have become and influenced by those profiteering off of junk food which makes it perfectly “normal ” to feed a 4 year old mcdonalds or processed gmo food but breast milk my god how embarressing! Stop being puppets and do what is natural and healthy for you and your children breast feed as long as you and your child want, So do not be influenced by some idiot who thinks its innapropriate thats their problem not yours ! I do not know of any healthier food then breast milk so why compromise your childs health for socitietal ignorance!

  120. Jo says:

    My first impression was this is for shock value to sell magazines. However, I did know
    in some cultures, they nurse until about age 6, but this is often due to a lack of food in
    that culture. I also feel this is to demoralize us from what is a sacred event. In
    most family’s, there would be another infant
    before age 6 so would need to be stopped. Did
    anyone else measure the mom and the kid with a ruler? These kids are more than half mom’s
    size. I am a farm raised gal who has nursed 2 kids, and I remember stroking their head, as it was thought to increase their brain activity back then. However, in Nature, by the time the infant reached half mama’s size, the cow would push away. LOL Just sayin.

  121. Sue says:

    I’m glad I breastfed my kids! I’d do it all over again if I had a chance. Only one of mine was still breastfeeding at the age of 3 years.

  122. Terry says:

    Most kids are weened from the breast or the bottle way before the age of 4. Next they will want to show up at their preschool and kindergarten classes to feed. Breast milk is healthy but they should be on whole foods at that age.

  123. wendy green says:

    very common in “under-developed” nations, and in indigenous tribes to breast feed toddlers. this is nature’s way. first world nations are too hung up. better breast milk than cow’s milk.

  124. Giselle Whitwell says:

    Great pictures, this is what we need to see more off. Breastfeeding can last up to 7 years. It depends on the circumstances, the need, the child’s development. There is nothing wrong with breastfeeding after toddlerhood. Nature is so wise that the milk changes from hour to hour, not to mention year, to meet the demands of the child. It is always ready when needed! I congratulate the mothers for their courage in letting themselves be on the cover of these magazines. We are still a bit Victorian, why can’t we show our breasts? They have multiple roles … offense should come if misuse is the case.
    Giselle

  125. chris says:

    The provocing position on the pictures was choesen to CHOC=SELL
    and it worked; Iam more chocked by a toddler sucking the straw of his COLA
    (socially accepted, but criminal to me)

  126. Trea Mekel says:

    I have been breastfeeding two sons. The oldest one i put back on (almost) total breastfeeding when he was about 7 months for his safety when we traveled for 3 months to India with him. In this way i could give him only what was totally save besides the breastfeeding, like papaya’s and bananas. Maybe he had enough of it after that because when he was 1 year old he stopped it himself.
    The second one i gave untill he was 1 1/2 years old. Then i stopped slowly and and in a reassuring way. He was getting addictive i felt and that was the reason i put him in rehab. (lol) I think people best be very sensitive to the individual child.
    About the pictures: The only reason why i could imagine people to be offended is the (unconscious) reaction to the attitude of the mom’s It feels a little like they are already defending what they are doing before being attacked, in stead of having their attention with their child.
    No other reason (to be offended) is valid as far as i can feel into it.

  127. jodi Runyan says:

    I think these children are to old for this myself, but im not their mothers. Leave them alone and let them take of their children while we take care of our own.

  128. Jenni McNabb says:

    I don’t think that this needed to be put on the cover of a magazine as it should be more of a private thing if a woman chooses to still breastfeed an older child. The depiction is pretty inappropriate-looking. But as some others have mentioned in their comments, I would be much more enraged to see a toddler drinking a coke or some other junk like that which people think nothing of giving to kids!

  129. Teri says:

    I think it is crazy that this country of ours can be even a little concerned about breastfeeding a toddler. Look to the natives….they did what came natural and didn’t think about what the community would “judge” about them. I had 3 kids and each of them had different needs. My first breast fed until she was about 3 and my last self weaned himself at 9 months…cold turkey. I then put him on goat’s milk that I got from a local farm. He liked that immediately. They’re all so different….viva la differance!

  130. melb says:

    I think we have to seperate our emotional response to the photo from our feeling about breastfeeding in this situation. I may be wrong but I can’t imaging nursing my daughter with a chair and she was breastfed at 4. But as publicity is meant to do it got everyone’s attention. This photo is supposed to ruffle your feathers, bravo to the photographer and the brave mothers who have participated.

  131. LynnCS says:

    Bryan…I don’t think we are all as stupid as you portray. We get it that they are posed pictures and the mag istrying to get a rise out of us. They are obnoxious pictures and serves no one but maybe the magazine’s sales that issue.

    I still think the bottom line is that you breast feed till the nourishment part is past and ween. I think letting a child suck on one’s breast to act as a pacifier is not the intention and teaches the wrong thing. All that closeness can be achieved by cuddling and nurturing in ways other that suckling. Have you ever noticed that an older child goes into a trance (eyes closed, etc) as soon as they get the breast? Can you say addiction?

    Yes, breast feeding is natural and can be done with modesty as long as the child needs the nourishment…up to 18 months usually. Beyond that it is for the wrong reasons. How much milk or nourishment is really being imparted? I’d like to see a study on that.

  132. LynnCS says:

    Oh, BTW. After weening the child from mommy’s milk. No cow’s milk. They can get all their needs from other sources. Check out “Not Milk” on the internet.

  133. Joan says:

    I am all for breastfeeding and nothing but breast milk for the first 6 months but once going on solid foods, breastfeeding can decline and be supplemental – making a “show” of it is not particularily accepted in our culture…but accepted or not is crucial for the child – I breastfed my daughters but they weaned themselves shortly after 12 months or so which wasn’t devastating for me…but bf certainly was better than dealing with bottle washing and all that goes with that – so many babies have reactions to the formulas and not the best choice but sometimes no choice when the mother can’t or won’t bf. As with many other issues, a personal choice and should be a private one – not one plastered on the cover of Time…

  134. Pam says:

    The first thing I want to say is, lucky, healthy children there. That’s the way we are supposed to form our childrens’ bodies. On real food made for human babies. These two little ones have a terrific future full of health. The second thing I want to say it anyone who hasn’t breast fed a baby shouldn’t judge others who do. “Walk a mile in their shoes” . . . sort of. These parents obviously have done excellent research on the subject and they insist on giving their children the best food on the planet. Now look again at the moms. Are they healthy looking, or what? No obesity. Which is rare these days.

  135. Scout says:

    It’s a little shocking to see so many truly ignorant, backwards comments regarding the breastfeeding relationship on a natural health blog. I didn’t realize it was populated with so many “standard American” type of people.

    Seriously…wow.

    But maybe they’re just new here and will change their tunes when they learned a little more.

    However, I can’t help but think that almost every single naysayer is guilty of actual harmful acts against children, like giving them garbage to eat like oreos and kraft macaroni and soda pop, or even just things like giving them candy at Halloween. Or what about allowing people to smoke cigarettes around their children. Now there’s a known killer, for sure.

    And if so, if any of the negative people here are guilty of any of these things, then they are just a bunch of hypocrites who act like they care about the poor children who are being breastfed too long, but really they only care about their own precious sensitivities, hangups or even perversions.

    Let us all worry about the countless things that actually cause harm (like, say, circumcision, or world hunger, or bigotry), and stop worrying about something that will only give a child more comfort and nourishment.

  136. Tara says:

    Who gives a damn about their outrage. As far as I am concerned if a mother wants to breast feed til the age of 4 what is the issue? I believe they have done this for a long time in some underdeveloped nations.

    Come on… 2 to 4 year olds are usually thinking anything sexual. Of course it is all too much for those who seem to have SEX in the FOREFRONT of their mind at all times so it would be prudent to keep feeding past the age of 2 behind closed doors. It just wouldn’t be worth the drama otherwise.

    These outraged people really need to get a life.

  137. maggi says:

    my children decided themselves how long they wanted to breastfeed for – my son stopped at three and a half years old, my daughter continued until she was almost 5 yrs old. breast is definitely best as far as i am concerned, superior nutritionally and far more practical.

  138. Isobel Marsh says:

    I was born in the late 1950’s to a Pharmacist/Nurse couple (i.e. supposedly above average intelligence, well-educated & ‘health professionals’ of their day). As my mother tells it, my father was extremely uncomfortable with her breastfeeding me and viewed it as “primitive” and “low class”.

    Dad dutifully explained to her that ‘Cow’s Formula Milk’ was superior to breast milk (I guess due to all of the added vitamins & minerals) and being a good, submissive ‘wife’ of her day, she ceased breast-feeding me after 6 weeks without question.

    Apparently she wasn’t too comfortable with the whole thing either and it was never an issue for her – in fact pregnancy itself embarrassed her. My younger siblings never saw a drop of their mother’s milk.

    As most women of my age did, I typically ‘rebelled’ by flaunting my breast-feeding whenever and wherever I felt like it. It was a wonderful experience, yet I felt it was time to stop when the babies just seemed ‘too big’ for it (around 10 months, at which point they both began walking as well). They actually seemed to lose interest at that point and it seemed quite natural to wean them then.

    I wonder if possibly, the cultural clash underlying this divisive issue might be our different perceptions of what we hope to achieve in ‘good mothering’ (that is, what sort of child we’re aiming to create in the long term).

    Do we want our children to remain with us(and heaven forbid, maybe a little dependent on us – and we them), to form a close tight-knit extended family? Or are we more interested in promoting the consumer myth of independence and self-aggrandizement?

    In other words, do we want our children to be successful and independent (maybe even rich &/or powerful) in order to satisfy our maternal ‘ego'(thus receiving some sort of vicarious societal endorsement of our successful parenting)?

    What sort of parent do you want to be? What sort of child do you want? How do you perceive family life going for you in 50 years’ time? How much do you care about what people think? How much of your attitude to breast-feeding is genuinely centered around the long-term needs of your child and how much of it is centered on your need to look good? These are the questions we all need to ask ourselves.

    I’m a Grandmother now and I love to watch my daughter breast-feed her children. Little Theodore lost interest in Mum’s milk when she became pregnant with his younger brother. It was a natural thing and I believe in nature’s wisdom. If my daughter feels that this baby needs to be breastfed into ‘toddler hood’, so be it. What’s the big deal?

    One thing I know for sure, is that she would never flaunt herself in a public photo like that, nor would she consider that extended breast-feeding made her a better mother than others’;nor, and this is my final point, would she expose her breasts pornographically for financial gain. How much money did Time magazine pay these ‘super Mums’ to publicly flout their breasts and what are they trying to prove?

  139. Janice says:

    The pictures are shocking and sensationalist. I don’t think they are in any way a fair representation of breastfeeding a child of any age.

    I agree with Frank, by the way. I breastfed 5 children, all for a year or less. I have some who are very well-adjusted, happy adults and one who is not. All five are smart enough for honors classes with one at genius level IQ. I am very close to all five children. I don’t think breastfeeding is the holy grail of determining post-adolescent security or intelligence.

    My grandson was born with his intestines outside of his body and could not even eat, much less breastfeed for a lot of the 2 1/2 months he was in the NICU after birth. At six months he drinks his mother’s breast milk from a bottle. He is 6 months old, extremely happy, well-adjusted and secure…even after having to endure yet another surgery to repair adhesions last month.

    Breastfeed however long you want to, but maybe it is love, and touch and being there that determine security, not necessarily just breastfeeding.

    P.S. I have an adult niece who was adopted and never breastfed. She is smart, healthy, a good citizen, and not crazy…just sayin’

  140. martha says:

    well aren’t we all opinionated. you do what is best for you and your family. I breastfeed my 3 children until they were three and stopped because i was ready for them to stop. they probably would have gone till 4 if I let them. but I had alot of criticism just for going beyond 1 year. there are so many benefits to nursing you just can’t go wrong. nursing was popular until about 1940 when AMA and formula came out. then dr. spock came out with his wonderful suggestions and family relationships have been on a decline ever since. throughout history, long term nursing was accepted as well as the family bed. where do you think all the people slept when there were big families. many in the same room with their parents! industrial revolution changed the way we even parked our bodies at night. what about during george washington’s day when total strangers slept beside each other in an inn? it was a necessity. everybody makes a big deal over something that is quite natural and better for your family. In la leche league (support group for families that breast feed) it was also suggested to have an informed opionion rather than one you just conjure up based on assumptions, tradition and prejudice!

  141. sandy d says:

    Was surprised to see such concern over how long other people choose to breastfeed. Some comments reminded me of a time when feeding in public was considered offensive. Why is feeding in public at 10 months fine but not at 16 months? It’s very sad that people feel so uncomfortable about something so natural that they feel a need to judge others.
    Sandy.D

  142. over_it says:

    The issue, for me, isn’t about breasfeeding. Do what you want. HOW DARE YOU, however, suggest that I am not “mom enough” because my kid’s didn’t stay latched on for years.

  143. IH says:

    I have breastfed my daughter until 13 months and I admit that if I had known what I know right now at the time I would have continued up to 2 years but probably not longer. Apart from the nutritional aspect I cannot say enough about the bonding you create with your child. Another thing I like about breastfeeding is that when you breastfeed YOU ARE IN CHARGE AND INDEPENDENT. Isn’t that what so many women want? It is easy: no bottles, no anything, just you. What you put in your body goes automatically to the child so this is the perfect time to be in control!

    I agree with a couple of readers that the pictures do not show the true meaning of breastfeeding and are very insensative. I guess they want to get a discussion going and nothing more.

  144. Pam says:

    I breastfed my daughter until she was 15 months old and I was pregnant with my second child. I think my breastmilk changed at this time. She had 4 teeth at 4 months old and the feed would stop if she used her teeth. It is up to either the mother or child, or both, as to when this should stop, but if the child is 3 or older, this should be a private time, not a public display.

  145. Jessie says:

    I was breastfed until age 4, no one picked on me and I believe I have turned out as normal as anyone else on the planet.
    I agree with the post above “what is REALLY DISTURBING… some moms feed their kids formula out of the sake of convenience….Some moms will give their 2 to 4 year old kids juice boxes filled with all kinds of synthetic flavors, colors, and preservatives. Now that is SICK!”
    I also think the only reason anyone is uncomfortable with it is because we rarely see it, more exposure equals more comfortable, IMO.

  146. norma says:

    I breastfed my children for a short time. Breastfeeding a child is certainly much healthier than formula! Up to what age should a child be nursed? I think it should be the mother’s decision. I greatly admire MODEST moms who have respect for others. They will nurse in private or use a nursing cover when they nurse in public. There truly is no need to flash ones breasts to the public.

  147. Tommy76 says:

    Hot, hot, hot. I am definitely turned on!
    Go lib moms go!

  148. glenda says:

    Would she go outside with her breast out in public? Why wear tops or covering in public. Now to have a child hanging off for millions to see?
    What about the child? Does their view matter with their school associates and friends now and in the future?
    What is God’s view! Did he not provide covering for the body for specific times?
    It’s a time and place for everything under the sun!

  149. David says:

    Hot !

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