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May 10th, 2012
04:37 PM ET

Breast-feeding: Too much of a good thing?

It's hard to avoid staring at the cover of Time Magazine this week. If you're on social media like Twitter and Facebook, the widely shared image may have arrived on your screen before you ever saw it in the supermarket.

The provocative cover shows Jamie Lynne Grumet, a 26-year-old mother from Los Angeles, breast-feeding her son. This isn't your typical mom-and-baby shot: Grumet's son is 3. In case you were wondering, Grumet told CNN's Erin Burnett that her son is actually breast-feeding in that now-iconic image.

Grumet said her own mother breast-fed her until age 6, and Grumet still remembers it. "I'm proud of her," Grumet said.

The picture promotes an article about the growing popularity of "attachment parenting", a theory first advocated by Dr. Bill Sears and his wife, Martha, in their 1992 best-selling guide “The Baby Book.”

The Searses argue that co-sleeping, “baby wearing” (where the baby is attached to the parent with a sling) and extended breast-feeding will help parents respond better to the individual needs of their babies.

Celebrities such as Mayim Bialik of "The Big Bang Theory" are also promoting ideas about attachment parenting. Bialik said on Friday that she still breast-feeds her 3-year-old son. "He's not done breast-feeding, and I'm not ready to tell him not to," she said.

Many moms and dads have strong opinions about these practices, especially the breast-feeding advice.  The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends babies be breast-fed exclusively for the first six months of their lives.

"We don't all nurse older kids," Bialik said of mothers who subscribe to attachment parenting ideas. "But the notion that a child's voice matters, that every child is different, that's the basis of attachment parenting."

Heather Curtis, wife of Fark.com founder Drew Curtis, told CNN's Geek Out that she practiced breast-feeding for an extended period, carried her babies in slings and practiced co-sleeping, as Bialik did. So did Caryn Rogers, a science writer for the Preeclampsia Foundation.

"I didn't really choose to eschew conventional care so much as chose to get what I believed was the most evidence-based care," Rogers said.

Grumet said that sleeping with her baby does not affect intimacy with her husband.

Watch: Breast-feeding cover-mom defends pose

"I think intimacy is extremely important in a marriage and I think a strong marriage is going to be a great foundation to show your children how to be raised confident and happy and I had that with my family, too," she said.

Time: Extended breast-feeding is more common than we think

CNN.com readers expressed mixed views on the subjects of the best age to stop breast-feeding and the appropriateness of the Time cover in general. See what they said.

We want to know what you think.  Is it OK to breast-feed well past toddler-hood, or is it too much of a good thing?


soundoff (2,707 Responses)
  1. Heather

    I think each family should make its own decision, but as a mother who breastfed my 4 children, I don't see why a child would go past 2? All of my children kind of weaned themselves around 18 months even though I was willing to nurse them until 2. If you just leave them alone and don't offer it, you'll find that they aren't interested at a certain point - from my experience anyway.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:39 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JC

      George Bush was breast fed until he was fifteen years old.
      It did not do him any harm ..... did it ???????

      May 11, 2012 at 15:03 | Report abuse |
    • Rob Joyner

      JC – your mom is STILL breastfeeding me. No harm there either.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:04 | Report abuse |
    • mike gizzle

      cmon now, apparently that woman dont have a man to do that for her so she uses a poor defenseless child to catch feelings. Breastmilk is for little ones with no teeth that need the mothers nutrients until they are old enough to go to more solid foods. If she is married, I bet the husband is jealous as crap...child may get more action than he does!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:06 | Report abuse |
    • JC

      Rob – that is excellent news.
      Could you say "Hi" to her for me ???
      She has been dead for 6 years.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:06 | Report abuse |
    • kingkong

      LMAO at robs comment....but the comeback by JC made me ROTFLOL.....

      May 11, 2012 at 15:24 | Report abuse |
    • JC

      Can we all agree that this argument is largely silly ???
      Judging from the size of the milk bottles .... it looks like Junior may end up going hungry anyway.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:51 | Report abuse |
  2. Dunlar

    Either that kid is going to get a wedgie, everyday, at school, or all of his friends will want to come over for dinner.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Michael

      Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha that's awesome Ha Ha Ha.

      May 11, 2012 at 14:51 | Report abuse |
    • Curious

      It should read "Hey mom, Got Milk?"

      May 11, 2012 at 14:51 | Report abuse |
    • AcclaimedMan

      You are funny 🙂

      May 11, 2012 at 14:51 | Report abuse |
    • Coz

      You just made my day with that comment! Thanks a million!!!!

      May 11, 2012 at 14:56 | Report abuse |
    • loriey

      She probablyw ill wean him when he goes of to college.....hmmmmm....maybe not....

      May 11, 2012 at 15:14 | Report abuse |
    • J

      I'd go over for dinner. I mean, she has another one just sitting there not being used.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:33 | Report abuse |
  3. shawn Tippie

    I hope they do not make a law against it and let people be. CNN obviously wants society to make a decision and force people to conform. I know the conservatives do not like it as was on drudge this morning. The liberals will also hate it as a woman's rights issue and it keeps them out of the workforce more often. The corporations hate it because breast milk is free although some money is made from the medical devices. So it is very likely be some law limiting nursing time some day.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ctbeckyw

      Agreed there should be no law about how long, it's just in public (especially restaurants) that should be banned.

      May 11, 2012 at 14:54 | Report abuse |
    • Michael

      i Its not so cut and dried. What if a 42 year old mother breast feeds her 1 year old but also breast feeds her24 year old son as well for their own gratification in public? Should that be illegal? Or should all possible breastfeeding between mother and child no matter what be considered ok?

      May 11, 2012 at 15:07 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      Did someone really speak so ignorantly and say that breast feeding should be "banned" in public??? Can I get your intelligent reasoning behind that? Kim K. can make millions by having her implants hanging out and postered to every magazine and billboard, but you have a problem with my wife feeding our baby... Guess what, you have the right to not look if you are that immature and ignorant!!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:23 | Report abuse |
    • Debbie Peterson

      Arent restaurants where we eat???? would you prefer that babies eat in the bathroom while everyone else enjoys a big fat and calorie filled dinner in the company of friends and family....think people

      May 11, 2012 at 16:58 | Report abuse |
  4. Joink

    At least it wasn't and 80 year old man nursing off his 102 year old mother

    May 11, 2012 at 14:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Patty

    I am all for breastfeeding, but this picture is too much. If this boy can walk, talk, and stand on a chair he is big enough to drink out of a cup. If this mom wants to keep giving him the wonderful nutrients from breast milk then why cant she just pump, pour the milk in a sippy cup and then give it to her 3 year old??

    May 11, 2012 at 14:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Momof2

      When you pump exclusively your milk does eventually run dry so pumping is not a long term option. I am a big proponent of breast feeding and feel women should be able to feed their child anywhere in public – but not so sure about breast feeding a child over the age 4...5...6...are there any studies on the psyhcological, emotional, and development impacts of breast feeding a child over the age of 4...5...6...?

      May 11, 2012 at 14:55 | Report abuse |
    • cari

      exactly!!!!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:01 | Report abuse |
    • rhofwi

      Breast feeding is so good for the baby, it's natural, normal and healthy. However, I think 3 years old is a bit over the edge. The kid has teeth...he should be eating solid food and drining from a cup. This isn't about what is good for the child, this is some half baked idea someone came up with. My daughter has vivid memories of when she was 3...is this really something you want your child to remember...standing on a chair to get a drink?

      May 11, 2012 at 15:30 | Report abuse |
  6. Laura

    I find it pretty disturbing to be breastfeeding a child up to 3 years old, but putting that aside, this photo is what is REALLY disturbing to me...it's made to be non-sexual (as is breastfeeding) but is almost sexual with the little boy standing up sucking on her breast with her tank top pulled down. Could they have at least put some decency into this photograph?!

    May 11, 2012 at 14:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • John P. Barker III

      I fully accept and agree with your analogy. A little kid "suckling" on the mothers boob is F-–Up! What the hell has happened to this society. Geez! appears hokey to me!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:09 | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      There is nothing sexual about breastfeeding. My wife breastfed my son until he was four. It is a wonderful bonding experience that provides comfort and security to a young child.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:09 | Report abuse |
    • C Smythe

      I fail to see how breast feeding is indecent at all. It is perfectly natural.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:11 | Report abuse |
    • Leslie B.

      Agreed! This picture is disgusting. I didn't say breastfeeding was disgusting - although I think this is much too old - I said the picture was. I'm sure all the parents to whose homes this comes will love having to attempt to explain it to the kids.

      Didn't anybody ever see The Last Emperor? The Chinese heir to the throne is showing being breastfed (by a stand-in for his mother) until it is clearly a sexual experience for both of them.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:13 | Report abuse |
    • BWTCHN

      Brian ,there is NOTHIG wrong with breastfeeding a child...BUT NOT ON THE COVER OF TIME!!!!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:18 | Report abuse |
    • Staci Garcia

      Laura, these kids that are breastfeeding at this age, this is what they do. They walk up to mommy, tug at her shirt, pull it up, pull it down, and get after it. No joke. Mom can be having a conversation with a friend and the kid walks up, pushes her clothes aside, and starts nursing. No permission required. I'm sure some moms require permission to nurse, but many don't. I think this is what some are referencing when they touch on the topic of teaching kids boundaries. But I think the issue of boundaries can encompass ALL parents, not just breastfeeding and bed-sharing parents.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:20 | Report abuse |
    • Kim

      I agree! I almost feel that breastfeeding over a certain age is like child molesting. There is no reason at all that this 3-year old should still be sucking on his mom's breast when he is old enough to drink out of a cup! I also think this little boy on the cover of time will never live this photo down. I feel sorry for him!!!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:28 | Report abuse |
    • jp

      pervert... 😉

      May 11, 2012 at 15:31 | Report abuse |
  7. LostinSLC

    Lucky kid

    May 11, 2012 at 14:43 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Charvel

      I agree!!! I'm 46 years old, and I would breast feed from that woman in the picture!!

      On a serious note... I think 8-11 months is old enough to stop breastfeeding.
      I had a neighbor that still breast fed her 4 year old!!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:05 | Report abuse |
  8. Momof2

    My question is what does this child eat in the day when he is in daycare/school?

    May 11, 2012 at 14:43 | Report abuse | Reply
    • AcclaimedMan

      The lady at the day care center ... !!!

      May 11, 2012 at 14:54 | Report abuse |
  9. Sharon H

    Okay, time out people. If the child has teeth, is potty trained, it's time to pump the milk into a bottle or sippy cup. Buy the kid a cow or goat for goodness sake. Borderline incest..., you think!!!???

    May 11, 2012 at 14:43 | Report abuse | Reply
    • C Smythe

      insest is sexual and there is nothing sexual about that photo so get your mind out of the gutter

      May 11, 2012 at 15:13 | Report abuse |
    • Leslie B.

      I disagree. They are deliberately making it very sexual here.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:14 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      Sharon...are you really that ignorant? Time picked this picture (a large 3 year old and an attractive mother) to cause a rise from people. But to associate breastfeeding with incest is pure ignorance! Some people choose to make a healthy decision and feed their children the most natural (and best) thing for them.... Grow up and get out of the cave you live in!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:29 | Report abuse |
  10. Hashem Alshurafa, Ph.D.

    Everyone is free to express their opinion. But I honestly think that health research should have the last say. The questions that are important here are not how she looks in the picture, or whether this is cool or not. Neither am I concerned about society and its pressures for one way or the other. The question to me is, what is best for the child? Period. And this is a question for health researchers and pediatricians. So if you are neither of those, you need to qualify your opinion that it is based on opinion and doesn't take into accout the health facts. Also remember, an experience with one child or two is not a controlled study and should not be used for advise. I think the general concensus of health researchers is that the child should be breast fed exclusively (fed nothing else) for the first 6 months and the general concensus is for breastfeeding to continue to 2 years (this part is debatable, some say 1 yr some say 3 etc...) Off course after the first 6 months other foods should be introduced. I would stay away from cow based formula for at least the first 6 months and maybe suplement with it later because it is substantially inferior to human breast milk. Anything else may be more practical, more cool, more acceptable but is not what is the best for the child's health.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Joe

      Congratulations on your Ph.D as you seem very proud of it or alternativelyare publicly demonstrating a sense of personal inadequacy. It doesn't mean your opinion is valid, only qualified. I think the social context in which the feeding is taking place is something that merits further discussion.

      May 11, 2012 at 14:57 | Report abuse |
    • Michael

      Lets not forget mental health issues. For the parent and the child.
      And as far as the degree goes... education is great but just because someone is less educated than another does not mean that they cannot be correct, or have a good opinion, or that the more educated person is always correct over them. I think the opinions of others matter and comments should be encouraged.

      May 11, 2012 at 14:59 | Report abuse |
    • I'm Adopted

      So I never breast feed, EVER. I was still captain of my baseball team, still went to a tier top university, still managed to get a job that challenges me everyday while making enough money to live in NYC. So..all of you can suck it (pun intended).

      May 11, 2012 at 15:05 | Report abuse |
    • John P. Barker III

      Typical PHD jib jab! Let's tone it down a bit herr professor!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:19 | Report abuse |
  11. no fool

    You should not invite anyone to waste their time submitting an opinion only to toss it aside. I don't see my posting anywhere.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Lila

    Everything about that picture, the poses, the expression on their faces and the fact it's on a magazine cover, grosses me out.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • AshahsMommy

      Me too...when I would go out with my newborn and it was time for her feeding, I simply went into the women's bathroom instead of sitting there for everyone to see, blanket or no blanket...

      May 11, 2012 at 14:51 | Report abuse |
    • doesn't matter

      How would you like eating in the bathroom?

      May 11, 2012 at 14:54 | Report abuse |
    • Lila

      Ashahsmommy sounds like an excellent mother and member of society. Doesn't matter, I know this might shock you, but the world doesn't revolve around you. Caring about others is and not whipping out body parts in public is very admirable.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:03 | Report abuse |
    • Leslie B.

      Grosses me out, too. Glad I don't have little kids at home to have to explain it to. Probably in today's mail.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:15 | Report abuse |
    • BWTCHN

      moms choice to breastfeed is as personal and private as the act itself. Social acceptance of moms breasfeeding young babies in public is still a major issue. Stepping off to the bathroom to nurse an infant but putting your toothbrush in a protective container to keep toilet mist water off of it....please what kind of standard it that? that said, this photo is WRONG. I whole heartedly agree with the sippy cup idea. If mom wants to continue and child asks for breastfeeding FINE! IN THE COMFORT OF YOUR OWN HOME! In public your 3...4....5 year old can get that milk from a cup!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:16 | Report abuse |
  13. Ken

    If you can ask for it, you are too old!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 11, 2012 at 14:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Stacey

      Actually, that's a pretty darn good rule of thumb.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:29 | Report abuse |
  14. SBrunner

    Jamie Lynne Grumet you are an awful mom. This public display for your own ego is just abuse. I would like to call CPS to your home.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • bill

      Yeah, call the government out to enforce your personal opinions. This does not affect you in the least. Back off.

      May 11, 2012 at 14:56 | Report abuse |
  15. Tim

    I would think that a good rule of thumb is that once they are old enough to verbally ask for it, then they are too old to receive it.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Karen

      Why? When do the benefits of breastfeeding stop? Research has shown that the qualities of breastmilk change uniquely to meet the nursing child's physical needs. It has proven that breastmilk is never "not good enough" for an age group.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:10 | Report abuse |
    • Leslie B.

      So Karen, you're saying the mom should show up throughout their school years and join them in the cafeteria so they can have lunch?

      May 11, 2012 at 15:16 | Report abuse |
    • Karen

      Leslie B,
      Obviously you have not surrounded yourself with full-term breastfeeders. Once children reach the age of 2, there is rarely any nursing happening during the day. Most nursing will happen at wake-up of morning and down to sleep at night. There is the occasional nursing for comfort due to a painful accident. Children typically start on solid foods at 6 months of age and use breastmilk to supplement their diets. Of course this child eats solid foods and drinks water from a cup. That is what the child would eat when away from mom.
      However, breastmilk is nature's perfect vitamin for toddlers who aren't able to nurse all day long. As a child decreases the amount they nurse, breastmilk condenses the vitamins to match the child's needs and ensure they are properly taken care of.

      May 11, 2012 at 20:11 | Report abuse |
  16. AshahsMommy

    While I believe breastfeeding is the best thing but as soon as teeth start to come in, it should be stopped. I also feel breastfeeding should be done privately, not just open and random anywhere. The picture on Time is sick and disgusting...

    May 11, 2012 at 14:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Karen

      You do know that some children are born with teeth, right? How are they supposed to eat?!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:11 | Report abuse |
  17. Pamela

    I think it is OK but she didn't need plaster the kid's face on TIME. She should seek her 15 minutes using something besides her kid.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. What does it matter..?

    The point of this whole breastfeeding cover is to bring to light the absurd intolerance towards each other. If the photo bothers you then make it be known to the publication. Otherwise do you really think you would have ever seen this happening in front of you in real life at any point? And if it ever did.. so what? Stop trying to control one another! Let women breast feed their kids for as long and as often as they feel they need to. Not by your idea of what is correct. And if they want to breast feed anywhere.. let them. It's time to stop thinking how we've usually been thinking if you want any good change to come.. otherwise you'll just live a life of complaint about every damn thing. Magazine covers of a mother painting their kids nails.. breast feeding.. leave other people alone. I applaud this cover because it will work out the kinks in society that are too wound up.. ease up people.. Worry about what's happening to your rights as a living being on this planet first..

    May 11, 2012 at 14:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Q357

      There has to be limits, not all people are born with the ability to police themselves, and society as a whole sets the standards one way or another via your elected government...etc. Question, so if I wanted to be nude in public, or have sex in public, or take a leak in public, is that okay? My actions can adversely affect those around me. I don't want my kids viewing some of these things, and I don't want to view some of these things. There is a time a place for everything, and it appears society as a whole doesn't think public pulling your breast out or having your breast pulled out to be suckled on is in good taste. I don't care how old you choose to breast feed your kid, just don't do it in public. Your need is to do this is in no greater of a need of a nudist who wants to walk downtown naked. Yeah sure you can say but my kid was hungry and its a necessity but he or she can be feed out of the public eye if it requires you to reveal private parts. A nudist or even a model doing a shoot would be arrested for such an action, and I'm sure they would argue their need to do with just as much passion and conviction as those who think breast feeding in public is their calling. Get one of them dang covers and stop pulling your breast out in public.

      May 11, 2012 at 16:21 | Report abuse |
  19. Q

    this is all about the mother and her mental health.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. AshahsMommy

    CRACKING UP...LOL

    May 11, 2012 at 14:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Sean

    Just more evidence we are raising a nation of bed wetting sissies! Teach your kid to grow up and cut the cord already!!!

    May 11, 2012 at 14:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Loopie

    When women do this type of thing, they are doing it because of their own emotional problems, personal enjoyment(in a gross way) and the need for attention, it's not about the child's well being. Next in line for shock value: child doing this with his father "to bond". Males could do this, they have the same equipment. The mother is producing very little or no milk at this point, so there wouldn't be a difference.

    May 11, 2012 at 14:58 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Karen

      That is so not true! Men are not equipped with the proper amounts of milk ducts needed to create sufficient amounts of breastmilk. And women continue to lactate as long as there is demand. If the child sucks, milk is produced.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:13 | Report abuse |
    • Loopie

      I never said they produced milk, judging from the size of that woman's chest, doubt she is producing that much either. Kids could do the same with their father "to bond". I was making a joke about the absurdity of putting it on a magazine cover, it was done for shock value.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:26 | Report abuse |
    • RT

      I love how you reference "the size of that woman's chest" as an indicator of how much milk is being produced. You are kidding right? Because last I checked you don't need to be an E cup to produce a lot of milk. As a matter of fact, you can be completely average and below average and produce A LOT of milk. Boobs get really big from an actual process after labor and delivery. After that, those suckers generally shrink back up slowly over the next year- especially if you were fit before you had a baby and got right back to exercising after. Case in point: I went from a B to a EE/F after delivery to a DD 4 months post partum, D 10 months post partum, C 12 months post partum and I am basically back to a B again- and I am still nursing my 15 month old son who happens to have a severe allergy to cow/goat/sheep milk. I happen to also run 5 days a week as well- so I have lost all of my baby weight plus 15 pounds and ran my second marathon.

      My experience is mine, but it is not unique to me.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:45 | Report abuse |
    • Loopie

      It doesn't have to be a full size difference but they are usually fuller, not flat and saggy like the one above. You can run ultra marathons, there will still be fullness, think about.

      May 11, 2012 at 16:14 | Report abuse |
    • Rumo

      The comment about the size of her chest does show that you really thought about your comment and did some research to make sure you didn´t just spout what you had heard somewhere...
      The size of the breast is not, in fact, related to the amount of milk that is produced. Actually, "heavy" breasts are often an early indication of pregnancy, and you can bet that at that point there is no milk whatsoever. The change – afaik – is more related to changing hormone levels.

      May 11, 2012 at 16:27 | Report abuse |
  23. Linda Cross

    Many Americans associate the term "exclusive breastfeeding the first six months" to mean it's ok to stop breastfeeding at 6 months. It actually means that the baby should be fed nothing but breast milk they first six months. That even excludes water. After the age of six months, water and soft food may be added. It doesn't mean quit breast feeding at six months. We have to look at how mothers all over the world traditionally fed their children before the "invention" of formula and birth control. They would breast feed until the became pregnant again, which was usually when the breast feeding child was around the age of two. The World Health Organization bases their recommendation of breastfeeding through the age of two on this research. Nowdays, with dependable birth control, mothers can breast feed beyond the recommended age. Breast milk is always better than cows milk for children. It grosses me out a bit to see a five year old breastfeeding, but it's all to do with what seems normal to individuals. Americans are just now coming to terms with breast feeding a newborn in public. They have no problems watching other mammals breast feeding. There has to be something wrong with that.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Scott K

    IIMHO this is more about the women than the children. Something is very wrong with this woman! In defense of Ms. Grummet, she comes by it honestly because her deranged mother breastfed her until she was SIX!

    May 11, 2012 at 15:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. VZ

    I don't really have an opinion on the length of time to nurse a child. It is a family decision. I nursed my children until they were one year and by that time they became more interested in solids. The World Health Organizition recommends nursing for one year. It really comes down to the individuals. In these economic times nursing is a much cheaper option for some families.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. m

    OK, there are two things. One is a child should be breast feeded as long as the mother can lactate. The second thing is having cover pages this obscene, reminds me of the novel Payton Place where one of the book character tells that a boy in the story is teeth-fed. In the civilized world there are borders on how to relay the message. I think TIME crossed that border.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:00 | Report abuse | Reply
    • shane

      Until she stops breastfeeding, the mother will not stop lactating.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:06 | Report abuse |
    • Lila

      She looks small, I don't think much is coming out anymore.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:14 | Report abuse |
  27. Jim

    This is sick just plain sick . It goes along with al the rest of the crassness in the world right now,,Whats that kid gonna do when he gets in school and the other kids start teasing him for it ? Then stand up there with your smug grin and explain that to him.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:01 | Report abuse | Reply
    • C Smythe

      the "kid" is only 3 and I bet he stops of his own accord in the next 3 YEARS

      May 11, 2012 at 15:16 | Report abuse |
  28. joe

    My great-grandmother breast fed her last child until he went to first grade. One hundred years later the family still thinks that was mighty peculiar.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Hungry

    I nursed well into my teens. It's perfectly normal though it can produce a lactose intolerance later on, and, once your wife starts having children it's round two for the next 14 years! Anybody have a spare bag of Oreo's?

    May 11, 2012 at 15:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. JC

    Judging from the size of the milk bottles .... it looks like Junior may end up going hungry.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. shane

    Sicko Woman. This is sexual molestation.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. lancem

    I read an article several years ago about a women who allowed her 8 year old son to breast feed "for dessert"....While I'm all for letting people do as they please, I must admit this freaked me out a bit.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:05 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Leslie B.

      Only "a bit" Yuck!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:19 | Report abuse |
  33. cevans,texas

    Babies are usually weaned off of the bottle at 12 months. A 3 year old being breastfed in my opinion is ridiculous!! I did not breastfeed my child and she was just as healthy as a breastfed baby. Maybe healthier!! Never was sick!! So, with that being said, I guess saying that babies are healthier if breastfed could be just a myth!!

    May 11, 2012 at 15:06 | Report abuse | Reply
    • C Smythe

      it is no MYTH as countless studies have proven otherwise

      May 11, 2012 at 15:18 | Report abuse |
  34. KB

    I understand the benefits of breastfeeding for an infant. Both of my children breastfed until I returned to work. I often wonder about the women who go on and on about the wonders of breastfeeding. It was painful, messy and HIGHLY inconvenient but I did it for the health of my children.

    But I think this mom goes well beyond the norm. A mother's role is to prepare a child to be a healthy, well adjusted, INDEPENDENT human being. Forcing the child into a continuous state of dependency is harmful and emotionally damaging. How will she (mom) cope when the child starts school or will she "home school" for the child's benefit as well?

    May 11, 2012 at 15:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. jen

    ok, does this BOY have an errection?or is the mother enjoying that way too much?... really.....he is not a baby, he is not in a 3rd world country with no water or food for survival, why would a supposed loving mother put her child on the cover of a world magazine sucking his mothers teet.....it looks like she is molesting her own child....does the father suck on the other one? this is just foul...if this is what the parents do in public, hate to see what they do behind closed doors....

    May 11, 2012 at 15:06 | Report abuse | Reply
    • shane

      The mother is probably enjoying it since she is the was obsessed with doing it. The kid would do just find with some orange juice.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:07 | Report abuse |
  36. Christi

    I breastfed my daughter until age 3. Only at bedtime after her first birthday. She is a adult now and doesn't seem to have any emotional problems from this. I breastfed my son until 15 monthes old. He weaned himself. Every child is different and I don't think at three you should be nursing at preschool but I believe every family is different and every child. Their decision not public opinion.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Rich

    If the kid is old enough to remember the experience later in life, that's probably too old. I can imagine all kinds of Oedipal/Freudian issues coming to light about 10 years down the road when he starts dating.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:09 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Leslie B.

      Good point!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:20 | Report abuse |
  38. cindy

    Absolutely disgusting! These women should look for another way to get attention. Give the kid a glass of milk, for crying out loud.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:09 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Malee

      Go tell that to mother living out in that remote African village – I'm sure there is a carton of milk handy in that EnergyStar rated refrigerator in her hut. By the way: the toddlers who aren't potty-trained yet over there run around bare-bottomed with no PANTS! How shocking!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:15 | Report abuse |
    • onestarman

      It is so SAD that a Human Mother feeding her child is considered – by You – to be 'Disgusting'. At the Same time I imagine you have No Problem with Depictions of Women being disemboweled on a Morgue Slab on the Nightly TV Crime Drama. Our Society is DOOMED.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:21 | Report abuse |
    • Leslie B.

      Malee, that's a whole different situation. Besides, those mothers aren't feeding their children to this age because those kids, heartbreakingly, don't live that long. Don't even attempt to compare some white suburban mom's choice with the natives of a huge part of a continent whose lives in no way resemble this woman's.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:22 | Report abuse |
    • Scott K

      Malee, this woman is not in some remote African village! She lives in L.A., and milk or a breast pump are readily available!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:24 | Report abuse |
    • Karen

      "Give that kid a glass of milk!" Why would I give my child milk from another mammalian species? Human milk for human children, thank you very much!
      BTW, the human race is the *only* species that continues to drink milk beyond the weaning ages. I don't see mature cows drinking pigs milk for sustenance. And don't tell me that all other mammals wean their young at a "much younger age." Elephants nurse for 4-5 years, or until they become pregnant again, and cows will nurse for 2 years if left with their calves. You have to remember that humans are mammals and we are instinctually driven to care for our young. Attachment parenting is about listening to those instincts and returning to the most natural state of parenting. Part of that is allowing the child to nurse as long as is desirable. You CANNOT force a child to nurse. At some point the child will decide he/she is done with that facet of the relationship and will not be emotionally damaged because of it.

      May 12, 2012 at 00:01 | Report abuse |
  39. Diana

    If the kid is old enough to ask for a cookie to go with the milk – they've breastfed too long.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Scott K

    Ever heard of a breast pump Ms Grumet? This woman and her mother are missing a few links upstairs.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:11 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Karen

      A good number of women don't respond to a pump. It's an artificial milk remover and is quite insufficient in that. Why pump when what nature gave you works better?

      May 11, 2012 at 15:16 | Report abuse |
    • Malee

      It's fantastic that we can now rely upon technology to save us from public censure for our bodily functions... Maybe instead of polluting the water and stinking up the restroom for others, we can be polite and all wear Depends undergarments.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:20 | Report abuse |
  41. Prdparent

    Heather asked, "....why a child would go past 2?"

    I child wouldn't. Do you think the 3 year old in the picture said "Hey mom, how about we snap a picture of me suckling your breast for a gnarly Time Magazine pic?"

    Or, do you think his narcissist, attention-hungry "mother" TOLD him to do it?

    May 11, 2012 at 15:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Malee

      The premises of your arguments are fallacious. People aren't attempting to justify behavior because "other cultures do it" they are merely pointing out that we in the US are in the minority for these negative perceptions of breastfeeding. Also, there is a huge difference in societal norms that do apparent injury or harm and those norms that have shown benefits and no known longterm risks.

      Also, framing broad and infounded assumptions about the agenda of this mother merely based upon an image of her is myopic and disingenuous.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:35 | Report abuse |
  42. Inky

    Uh..our child was done the same way as the child depicted on the cover, and unfortunately he is regressed in age due to the mother trying to keep him in a baby type stage for so long..I believe the mother has some mental issue that does need to be looked at. If one want to be as bold as this mother is posing like some pedophile magazine cover do it in the privacy of your home where the rest of the world whom may not agree with it has to see it. Our society has become an open book, and things like this shoved down your throat all the time. It breeds intolerance, and hate and is better left to your personal home life. It puts her and her child at risk for hateful and hurtful commentary and judgement, and it will not make her child's life enhanced when other children see him in school. Cruelty from other children has become a norm in this society.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Leslie B.

      You're right. This will be treasured by pedophiles the world over. Good job, Time.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:23 | Report abuse |
  43. onestarman

    In many Traditional societies Extended breastfeeding is Common. Breastfeeding ONLY became Uncommon in the WEST when Women were forced to WORK to help support their family – unlike previous generations which could more easily CHOOSE to remain at home; because a Husband's Paycheck could pay the Bills alone.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:17 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Prdparent

      You know, in some Traditional societies, grown men marrying and raping 5-10 year olds is common.

      Why do people continue to use this "other societies" argument?

      May 11, 2012 at 15:21 | Report abuse |
    • Malee

      I agree. Bottlefeeding and formula came up as a means to feed babies when the mother couldn't and no wetnurse was available, then continued as a convenience luxury, and only during the industrial revolution did it grow in popularity and become mainstream in the USA.

      Back then, popular doctors were also telling mothers not to hold their infants, and the infant mortality rate was horrendous. They also doped up mothers on sedatives during delivery that also affected the infant. We know better now. More convenient is not necessarily better.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:27 | Report abuse |
  44. christine

    With regard to this subject the world must be looked at as a whole, not just Western white folks. Across the world, in non Western countries breast feeding is viewed very differently. When trying to assess all of the effects of breatfeeding, whether long term or short term, the whole world must be included in the research.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Prdparent

      Christine – please see my reply to onestarman above. Just because other societies do goofy stuff doesn't mean we should too.

      Or do you need MORE examples of insane things other societies do around the world? (forced abortions, infanticide, child-brides, arranged marriages, famale mutilations, stonings, running-of-the-bulls, escargot)

      May 11, 2012 at 15:25 | Report abuse |
  45. jen

    i guess this women never heard of the anti-bulling campaign...poor kid.....mothers milk won't help him when he kills himself from peer ridicule

    May 11, 2012 at 15:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. amy

    Wow, look how many people just can't wait to weigh in on a woman's personal decisions. FYI-worldwide breastfeeding average weaning age is around 4 and half years old.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Lisa

    I breast fed for the first 6 months and then began supplementing with pablum and then other solids. I continued to breast feed for 28 months actually until I just couldn't take it any more. My son would have continued til....? Certainly it was very comforting for him. My sister breast fed her twin boys until they were 36 months (until she just couldn't take it anymore). I say, go for it as long as it works for you. However, the problem I have is how is this child going to feel as a middle schooler, high schooler and young adult with this photograph dogging him? He'll be be labelled with derogatory terms because of it throughout his life. Someday he'll be a man and I bet this photo is not one he'll be glad he was in. I'm all for attachment parenting but Mom is pretty inconsiderate regarding his future emotional life by posing and allowing this photo to be published in a high profile publication for all to see.

    May 11, 2012 at 15:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • kingkong

      i don't believe you. Prove it. Where are the pictures??

      May 11, 2012 at 15:29 | Report abuse |
    • Malee

      It's not as serious as you make it out to be. It won't be remember. In any case, once-upon-a-time Rosa Parks got kicked off a bus... Look at how we all percieve that today, compared to back then. Times change, and so do perceptions, but only if people are brave enough work at that change, in spite of criticism.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:46 | Report abuse |
  48. jay

    This is incest and crosses the line! When a child has a full set of choppers and can drink out of a real cup (not a sippy cup) and eat a steak with his teeth, this is the time to stop. I don't know why this isn't common sense to many people......oh I forgot a lot of people just don't have it.

    @ @
    +
    O

    May 11, 2012 at 15:24 | Report abuse | Reply
    • jay

      Oh, and it looks trashy!

      May 11, 2012 at 15:26 | Report abuse |
    • Malee

      How is this incest? Breasts biologically are for the primary purpose of feeding offspring, NOT for sexual gratification. You only perceive it as incest because you assume there is a sexual response to this breasfeeding, but there really isn't – and even at the age of three, there is nothing odd about it. I breastfed my own daughter until three. She is now six, and well on her way to becoming a well-adjusted wonderful woman someday. Don't you dare tell me I had ANY incestuous feelings while nursing her, at three.

      May 11, 2012 at 15:42 | Report abuse |
  49. AtheistHuman

    Im hungry!

    May 11, 2012 at 15:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. kingkong

    the husband created the kid....soos the kid can wait...the husband should be first in line....

    May 11, 2012 at 15:28 | Report abuse | Reply
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