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Mama-Led Weaning Support Thread - Page 4

post #61 of 130
I'll be back w/ a full story after their bedtime. . . dd and ds (21 months) have not nursed since last Wednesday am. It was disinterest on their part and a gentle nudge from dh and I. I am over the moon. Nursing got really hard at about 9 months. . . I'm amazed I made it this long. I haven't missed it at all (I know it hasn't even been a week). I have experienced some discomfort at night, I'm combating that w/ cabbage leaves and ibuprofen. Ds has started nightwaking again, he also is needing lots of extra cuddles. Dd is unphased by it.
post #62 of 130
Hello Mamas, we are slowly slowly slowly phasing out the night nursing. Dd2 still nurses to sleep but is now happy with periods of hugging, back rubs, face patting etc. I have taken to lying across the bottom of the queen sized bed so I'm not RIGHT next to her, yet I'm nearby. Last night I don't recall her waking for the midnight/1/2 a.m. nursing but wanted me at around 5 a.m. It's so great! Hopefully tonight will be the same.

I am working at physically separating myself from her a little bit. It makes me sad but I simply cannot be a Super Woman and nightnurse two children. I'm hoping soon to get a little twin bed for her in there, and I'll nurse her to sleep, then go sleep on that bed. So she'll get used to the idea of me separating. By the time this 3rd baby comes in July I want her big sister moved in and me out of there. One step at a time. It's tough but we can do it.

Blessings to all on their journey!
post #63 of 130
After three days of sleeping on the couch, DS was okay with waiting until about 3 am to nurse at night... until the molars started coming in. Now that we're back from travelling, I think I'll try phasing out one feeding at a time.
post #64 of 130
It worked!!!

Okay, so this is our second go-round with the nightweaning, but all it took was pretty much ONE night of DS being attended to at night by his dad and me telling him that we wouldn't nurse until morning to convince him that nursing at night was not an option. Since we started it a week ago, he has even slept in my arms all night because we were at my MIL's house, and though he woke up once, he made no request to nurse at all! Now he just asks for water. <3

It seems to be having some effect on his sleep - he slept for 8.5 hours straight the night before last, which is a rarity, but he woke up several times last night. Hopefully he just needs a few weeks to work out the kinks!

Nightweaning is the best!
post #65 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama_Meme View Post
well... I've tried nightweaning twice and I guess i'm still in the middle of attempt number2 My DD is a super light sleeper (2yo) and wakes often adn just keeps repeating, for literally hours, every night "nummies, nummies, nummies" and I have tried not giving it her. it's got to the poitn where, if I've decided there's no nummies until 6am, she will actually wake at 3 am and ask/cry//demand them for three hours until its time for it, at which point, we are both exhausted and the time is right, so I give it to her. Not the best reinforcement, but what do i do?
This is how my attempts at nightweaning have gone. Sometimes I forget that when she stirs, it doesn't mean she needs to nurse. What I usually do is, she stirs and if it seems like it's going to turn into crab, scream, smack fest (in-bed temper tantrum, oh joy) I will try to nip it in the bud by nursing her. What I try to remember to do is to let her squirm a bit and then go back to sleep. I don't always do this.

A few weeks ago we were doing ok, she'd wake up once or twice and then I'd tell her no more ah-ahs until the alarm goes off, well she'd pitch a fit for a while, and then finally fall back asleep (lucky girl, because I was still wide awake after a bout like that). But, for some reason, we slipped back into nursing.

I think we need more space, DH, baby and I on a queen doesn't quite cut it. Sometimes DH sleeps downstairs because he doesn't like our mattress and I think DD and I do better that way.

But Friday nights we usually let the kids stay up and watch a movie and then they sleep on the fold out couch. This past friday, she didn't cry at all, and only when she was ready to wake up, did I hear her. I thought maybe we could have her start sleeping with her sister. But, DSD said she was asking her for ah-ah all night long. Usually they just bring her upstairs if she's getting too cranky, so I thought it couldn't have been too bad. I have no idea how long it really was (DSD does tend to be a heavy sleeper and probably doesn't know how much DD was awake), but I do know she was not pitching a fit. So I'm not sure cosleeping with DSD and DSS is right just yet - since she'd disturb their sleep, too.

What we're probably going to try is getting her her official own bed. Or rather, putting the bunk beds back together and getting DSS his own bed. I think nightweaning needs to happen with us at the same time as ending co-sleeping, or at least primary co-sleeping. We've tried all kinds of ways, but have had mixed success.

For right now, we're just muddling through. I do think though that I'm going to try and wean her off the "i'm just waking up and I need to nurse for at least a half hour" session. It takes up way too much time in the morning and I can get nothing done. Today I had DH get her dressed and start her day - so when they came downstairs I had breakfast for them - she just ate instead. I did nurse her afterwards, but she was well awake and was much better about not lingering for hours (when she's sleepy, she will nurse for as long as I'd let her). She just nursed, asked for "other side ah-ah" and finished, not even ten minutes. Of course, this means I have to be alot better about getting out of bed and moving when the alarm clock goes off.
post #66 of 130
Our nightweaning strategy worked really well - I love it so I want to share! I tried the method that Dr. Jay Gordon recommends in Good Nights, and this is a lot like that, with a few tweaks.

Basically, you keep track of when your child wakes up at night to eat and how long they nurse. Do it for a few days. Then make a list, let's say she wakes up to nurse at 12, 2 and 5 one night and 11, 3, and 4 the next night. At around 10:30, 1, and 3, you nurse your kid, dream feeding if it's at all possible, waking her if you have to. If she generally nursed for about 12 minutes each time she woke up, then you are going to nurse her for 12 minutes the first night and then pull her off, 10 minutes the second, 8 minutes the third, and so on until you are down to zero.

The most important thing about this technique is divorcing the idea of waking up from the idea of nursing. Whatever you do, you just don't nurse the baby when she wakes up. When she wakes up, cuddle her, love on her, do whatever you have to do, but don't nurse. I found this easiest to do by sleeping on the couch for two weeks while DH slept with DS. The nightweaning went easier when it was coupled with co-sleeping. I kept an alarm on so I knew when to go upstairs to dreamfeed (and I successfully dreamfed my then 18 month old, so it can be done with older kids).

I read that even though your child doesn't medically need to nurse at night, she does need it in this situation because she is used to it, and she will be hungry without it. Over time, she will adjust her intake during the day and become used to getting less at night.

I would say it took us about a week to do the plan, and then another week of just letting him get used to it. It was shocking how readily he took to it. When I wasn't there, he just didn't really think about the nursing. I think a lot of us panic when those immediate shrill cries start, because they sound so heartbreaking, but a little cuddle and he would settle down. Even when I went back to sleeping with him sometimes, he would do the same thing.
post #67 of 130
Interesting. When your little cried was it "i'm upset" or was it "I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it and I'm going to keep screaming and hitting until the entire house wakes up!" Because my DD is really the second option.

I tried Jay Gordon's ideas a few times... no way does it work for DD. I tried it at 14 months, 16 and 18 months. She would NOT have it, and we got even less sleep.

I'm ok with where we're at now, but I'd love it more if we were done with night time.
post #68 of 130
Sometimes it was the latter, and my DH would just hold him as tight as he could and soothe him - usually took maybe 5 minutes. (I know all this because I listened on the monitor - I couldn't let go of my control!!! ) I will admit that he is good at *going* to sleep, he's just not good at *staying* asleep. The only time he cried that kind of neverending wail was when we were trying to put him in a crib around 6 months - we stayed right there with him, but he was still not having any of it.

The problem with Jay Gordon, for us, was that when he woke up his first thought was "nuhs! nuhs!" So even if I pulled him off, made him go back to sleep on his own (which he learned to do), he still woke up expecting it. Then the night when I didn't give it to him it was sort of cold turkey.

Now he just doesn't even ask for it - or sometimes he says one "nuhs" or pats me once and then it's like he remembers, and he just stops. It's like a miracle, LOL. I also talk to him about it A LOT during the day, to remind him.
post #69 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teenytoona View Post
Interesting. When your little cried was it "i'm upset" or was it "I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it and I'm going to keep screaming and hitting until the entire house wakes up!" Because my DD is really the second option.

I tried Jay Gordon's ideas a few times... no way does it work for DD. I tried it at 14 months, 16 and 18 months. She would NOT have it, and we got even less sleep.

I'm ok with where we're at now, but I'd love it more if we were done with night time.
Teenytoona This would have been my dd1 to a tee. Some children are just more intense. Not sure what the solution is for you but

VERY occassionally now I am able to pat dd1 back to sleep but most of the time she just starts getting mad and kicking her legs until I give in. At some point though it's gotta happen because when this baby is born I can't be in two places at one time.
post #70 of 130
Like a PP said, I'm not really weaning by normal standards, but I sort of am by MDC standards.
DS will be two this month. I definitely want to continue nursing for a while longer, but I'm happy that we're at a point where he can do overnights with his dad now, or be away from me for a few hours without having to nurse. DS nurses probably four times a day during the week (in the morning, when we get home in the early evening, and again at night and then again when I go to bed around 11 or 12, plus maybe a couple of quick sips in between), and a bit more on the weekends. He only rarely nurses in the middle of the night, typically if he's under the weather.
We started solids when he was seven months, but he didn't get really into them until he was about a year old. Up until he was about 20 months old, I went to the babysitter's house on my lunch break every work day (I went twice a day up until nine months or so). My supply seems to be holding up well and DS is fine not nursing during the work day, and just eating solids.
It seems like nowadays nursing is more of an emotional need for him than a nutritional need, though with an up-and-down toddler diet I'm really glad to still be nursing on the days when he only seems to eat a handful of crackers and three grapes all day long, or when he's sick. But in general, nursing calms and centers him better than anything else.
I feel like I don't resent having a nursing toddler because the frequency of nursing has gradually dropped off over the month -- it's at a very manageable place for both of us. I'm able to enjoy it because it's not non-stop, and I know I'll miss it when he does choose to wean.
In the spring I'll have the option of taking this really amazing trip to eastern Europe for about 10 days. I would pump while I was there, and I don't think that a two and a half year old would forget how to nurse that quickly, so I don't think it would have to mean full weaning.
post #71 of 130
Thread Starter 
So does anyone have any tips on how to get a formerly nursing-to-sleep-for-naps toddler to nap without nursing? It's been a nightmare here. It's taken me two hours or so to get him down to a nap the couple times I've tried. Other days I've just given up and nursed him on my lap but then I can't move him and can't get anything done. I don't want to nurse him lying down anymore because it drives me crazy, and anyhow it's pretty much stopped working anyway. At night DH puts him to bed and I think he must have infinitely more patience than I do. I know I need to buckle down and follow the routine instead of letting him nurse on my lap. Our routine is supposed to be lunch, then stories in his nap room, but after that we typically nursed to sleep but I'm not sure what to do now because he is just crazy and runs around the room and flops around and just won't LIE DOWN and close his eyes. If he would lie still for a few minutes he would sleep but how do I get him to do that? It frustrates me so much and I am really not being a very nice mom at naptimes.

Please help!
post #72 of 130
I don't think it's you or your patience, Mel. <3 It is so frustrating to me, but my DS goes down for naps and sleep with my DH or my MIL beautifully. With me, it's all nurse, nurse, nurse and he refuses to sleep without it. It drives me crazy, and it makes me feel incompetent, but I know it's just because the boobs are there.

Is there any caretaker who could come over and put him down for naps for a few weeks? He might get used to it (but my DS hasn't so that is probably way optimistic.)


I meant to add earlier, re the nightweaning, my DS would ordinarily scream bloody murder if he woke up at night wanting to nurse. The thing that changed was, he was nursing throughout the night, so he wasn't hungry or wanting to nurse as much.
post #73 of 130
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahz5 View Post
Is there any caretaker who could come over and put him down for naps for a few weeks? He might get used to it (but my DS hasn't so that is probably way optimistic.)
No, we really have nobody nearby. But thanks for the encouraging words. When we nightweaned him he was sleeping right next to me for the most part so I have hope that if I can stick it out it'll work out in several days to a week...maybe.
post #74 of 130
Might be joining this thread... DD is 18 months & I am keen to have her weaned by 21 months... but then I feel all torn & sad about losing our nursing relationship... but then it's starting to drive me mad... Eep. Good to read the thoughts of others.
post #75 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahz5 View Post
Sometimes it was the latter, and my DH would just hold him as tight as he could and soothe him - usually took maybe 5 minutes. (I know all this because I listened on the monitor - I couldn't let go of my control!!! ) I will admit that he is good at *going* to sleep, he's just not good at *staying* asleep. The only time he cried that kind of neverending wail was when we were trying to put him in a crib around 6 months - we stayed right there with him, but he was still not having any of it.

The problem with Jay Gordon, for us, was that when he woke up his first thought was "nuhs! nuhs!" So even if I pulled him off, made him go back to sleep on his own (which he learned to do), he still woke up expecting it. Then the night when I didn't give it to him it was sort of cold turkey.

Now he just doesn't even ask for it - or sometimes he says one "nuhs" or pats me once and then it's like he remembers, and he just stops. It's like a miracle, LOL. I also talk to him about it A LOT during the day, to remind him.
Wow, glad that it worked out so nicely for you. I must admit jealousy here! I know 5 mins of cuddling with DH doesn't work for DD. Usually she screams for as long as possible (at least a half hour). We've tried the daddy comfort thing, and really, sometimes he's had to resort to a bath to calm her down. Sigh, I guess it does come down to temperament, too. DD is incredibly fiery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Surfacing View Post
Teenytoona This would have been my dd1 to a tee. Some children are just more intense. Not sure what the solution is for you but

VERY occassionally now I am able to pat dd1 back to sleep but most of the time she just starts getting mad and kicking her legs until I give in. At some point though it's gotta happen because when this baby is born I can't be in two places at one time.
Thanks for the hugs. Yes, DD is for sure intense, but I'm glad to hear she's not the only. Does your DD1 still nurse at night? I'm not sure I'm willing to do this forever, KWIM? I can't believe you're having another one - no offense to your or my intense DD's, but even if I had no stepkids, mothering DD has shown me I cannot handle any more of my own kids. She requires too much. And I am too easily irritable for any more. You must be a superhero!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BarefootScientist View Post
So does anyone have any tips on how to get a formerly nursing-to-sleep-for-naps toddler to nap without nursing? It's been a nightmare here. It's taken me two hours or so to get him down to a nap the couple times I've tried. Other days I've just given up and nursed him on my lap but then I can't move him and can't get anything done. I don't want to nurse him lying down anymore because it drives me crazy, and anyhow it's pretty much stopped working anyway. At night DH puts him to bed and I think he must have infinitely more patience than I do. I know I need to buckle down and follow the routine instead of letting him nurse on my lap. Our routine is supposed to be lunch, then stories in his nap room, but after that we typically nursed to sleep but I'm not sure what to do now because he is just crazy and runs around the room and flops around and just won't LIE DOWN and close his eyes. If he would lie still for a few minutes he would sleep but how do I get him to do that? It frustrates me so much and I am really not being a very nice mom at naptimes.

Please help!

IDK. The only non-nursing way DD falls asleep is if I'm out of the vicinity, or if she's tired and we're driving somewhere (but that doesn't always work, because much of the time she just screams at me for ah-ahs). Hope someone else has better advice!
post #76 of 130
Joining in. I am desperately wanting to night wean my 13 month old. I've been nursing since Aug 07, when DS was born. I nursed him through out my pregnancy, tandem nursed for 3 months, and am still going strong with DD. It's starting to make my skin crawl at night and I so need some sleep. DD sleeps in her crib in our room, after not wanting to co-sleep, so she is close. She wakes up screaming and won't let DH comfort her. On top of it, she has little interest in food, and usually plays with it. We'd like to have a 3rd baby, and I would really like to wean her by the spring, I just need a break from nursing and don't want to continue this into the next pregnancy.
post #77 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by BarefootScientist View Post
So does anyone have any tips on how to get a formerly nursing-to-sleep-for-naps toddler to nap without nursing? It's been a nightmare here. It's taken me two hours or so to get him down to a nap the couple times I've tried. Other days I've just given up and nursed him on my lap but then I can't move him and can't get anything done. I don't want to nurse him lying down anymore because it drives me crazy, and anyhow it's pretty much stopped working anyway. At night DH puts him to bed and I think he must have infinitely more patience than I do. I know I need to buckle down and follow the routine instead of letting him nurse on my lap. Our routine is supposed to be lunch, then stories in his nap room, but after that we typically nursed to sleep but I'm not sure what to do now because he is just crazy and runs around the room and flops around and just won't LIE DOWN and close his eyes. If he would lie still for a few minutes he would sleep but how do I get him to do that? It frustrates me so much and I am really not being a very nice mom at naptimes.

Please help!
Mine quit nursing to sleep before they were a year. But because we were nursing I was never able to just rock them to sleep. (They are 21 months and I rocked them to sleep last week for the first time after I weaned them!) Anyway, when magic sleeping milk drops quit working, I had to get them comfortable going to sleep on their own in their own bed. It included some playtime (them in their bed and me standing over it) in their bed during non sleep times. They have books and stuffed animals in their crib and we do relaxing music at sleep time. If they aren't going to sleep on their own I lay down with them in my bed and remind them the rule is they have to stay laying down and cuddle.

Wondering if anyone who has completely weaned can advise me on how long I may be feeling engorgement or uncomfortable pressure? I am taking ibuprofen and using cabbage leaves. I am not wearing a bra but one of those tanks w/ the built in bra. It helps but for some reason they have started elbowing and head butting (accidently) me in the breast frequently and IT HURTS.
post #78 of 130
Drinking peppermint tea and eating parsley are supposed to help lower supply.
post #79 of 130
Thread Starter 
Bump! How's everyone doing?

Did anyone or anyone's child use the holidays as an excuse to wean, or to start nursing more?

Mine hardly nursed at all over our travels. Once every other day or so. Now he's back up to once or twice a day but I think the end will be fairly soon. I'm ready to be done but I'm still ok with nursing so at this point I'm going to let him do what he wants for a few weeks and see where it goes, at which point if he's still nursing once or twice a day I'll start playing a more active role again...

I have to say I am definitely enjoying having a non-nurser at naptimes, bedtime, and all night! He goes down for naps so easily after just a few days of being upset over the lack of daybees.

Good luck to everyone else!
post #80 of 130
Mel, I think I missed how you finally broke the naptime association - did he just stop wanting it or did you do something more active?

In the past few weeks mine has been forcing his hands down my shirt to play with my other nipple constantly and it is driving me up a wall. He is so insistent about it! I have made it off limits because it was making me dread nursing. I don't know what I hate about it so much, LOL.

But he IS starting to cut back on the nursing sessions, with a little help from me. Yesterday I came home from work and he didn't even mention nursing until bedtime! Usually he would have nursed several times during that period.
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