Co-sleeping, attachment parenting, and crunchy mom are just a few labels for different ways of parenting. I prefer not to use any of these but instead just do what works for our family and kids. This brings me to the topic of baby led weaning.
When I first heard about it I had no idea what it was. I assumed it just meant you let the baby decide when they are ready to eat food and wean from breastfeeding. I was kind of wrong. Baby led weaning is offering baby foods that they feed to themselves. You don't puree anything and you don't feed them baby food. You instead cut food into strips and let the baby feed themselves. Sound scary? Yeah, I thought so too.
I didn't plan to do baby led weaning. In fact, I bought everything I needed to make and store all my own homemade baby food. But when it came time for my baby to eat food, she refused it. She would smack the spoon away from her face and refuse to open her mouth. I figured she just wasn't ready for solid foods and decided that we would wait a little longer. A few weeks would pass and I would try it again, she still refused.
This battle went on for weeks. I finally decided to just give over and try baby led weaning. I read up on it as much as I could and even joined a great facebook group to learn more. After making myself more familiar with BLW, we gave it a try.
We started out with avocados and it was a huge success! She took a few bites of it and played a lot with it. She had fun! There was a learning curve for my baby on how to chew food and swallow it. She did gag a lot, but she never chocked. She was slow moving with BLW. Sometimes she just wanted to play with her food, but we kept offering it to her.
Eventually, Raegan started to eat without gagging and she learned how to chew her food. She is 10 months old and feeds herself very well. She likes all types of foods but loves anything that has carbs! (Girl after my own heart.)
All of that to say, we chose BLW because it is what worked best for our baby. There are so many benefits to BLW and if we have another baby we would probably do BLW again.
If you are interested in doing BLW with your baby, I highly recommend doing some research first. There are some things you do need to know before you start and some safety factors to consider. Here is the facebook group I joined that is full of very useful information, tips, recipes, and even encouragement. The group is named Baby Led Weaning for Beginners & Beyond (BLWBB)