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Help help please - night weaning - Page 2

post #21 of 33
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the kind words. Very helpful!

I know we need a plan and to stick to it. In the middle of the night when I'm like "I can't take this anymore, we need to nightwean NOW," it becomes this sort of half-hearted thing, and she cries and then I end up nursing her, and I KNOW I'm setting us back but I'm totally stuck in that moment.

With the helpful thoughts in mind that we are not depriving her of nutrition, that we're assisting her on her way to self-soothe through other times, and that it's actually a good thing to set boundaries, I think we can continue in a few days, probably using Dr. Jay's method.

I'm not sleep deprived but I do dread night time. Our bedtime routine typically takes an hour and a half, with about 45 minutes of nursing to sleep. Of late DD has been nursing for at least an hour in the middle of the night. We try hard to give her lots of nutritious food all day, but I still worry that she's just hungry. I try to make sure she's gone to the bathroom right before bed, but I still worry that her tummy is making her agitated.

Honestly I think she just doesn't want our routine to change. And that's sad, but something has to shift here, because I don't want to dislike her, or yell at her in a weak moment. This early early morning I was biting down hard on my pillow and screaming into it to keep from flinging her away from me after she'd been pawing at me for over an hour. Not good!

I'll update whenever something changes.

Thanks again ppl.
post #22 of 33
I nightweaned both of my kids around that age. With DS I needed to be there. We hugged and kissed and sang and all that but I didn't nurse under any circumstances.

With DD she was not settling down at all so I moved out of the room for 3 days. She did much better with just DH.

The key for us was my confidence. I was fully weaning both times (had already day weaned) so failure was not an option. I was calm and focused and knew that they'd adjust . I don't think they'd have adjusted as quickly as they did were it not for my confidence. I think children need to feel safe and they won't feel that way if they can pick up on your uncertainty, YK?
post #23 of 33
A small example of what you're saying D McG happened for us last nite. 2 nites ago I started our new nightweaning program - when dd woke up and started her tantrums when she realized I wasn't taking her out of the crib, she tossed and turned and threw herself around and cried and screamed... it was awful and heartbreaking BUT... I had the confidence and certainty that we needed to do this and that she'd be ok in the end, plus I knew what I needed to do.

So last nite was the 2nd nite but 1st for DH being present. She woke and was only like 5 min into her tantrum before DH was like "I can't stand to see her like this, let's just pick her up" and he started to pick her up. I said firmly "No!" mainly because that's what happened when we'd almost successfully weaned her before and then we travelled and DH got self-conscious about her crying and insisted I feed her. But also, he wasn't as prepared as I was this time, or as determined.

So what was so interesting was this: DD is definitely a mama's girl, almost always wants me if we're both around, and always goes to me for comfort if she's upset and we're both around. But last night she only went to DH, only called for him... it's like she KNEW he was uncertain but knew I wasn't gonna give her what she wanted, so he was her target. Not that I think she's that totally conscious, but it was noticeable that she only went to him when that's never the case. So I agree, I think the certainty, confidence, and COMPASSION for how hard this is for our babes and us, all that helps make this as successful as possible.
post #24 of 33
Originally Posted by Erlaine View Post
...and was nursing almost violently. For a LONG time. She was tweaking my other nipple and nursing and tweaking and nursing and I was getting more and more impatient and finally just said NO MORE NANA right now and of course she freaked out.

...at least I had some time to myself where my nipples weren't being messed with.
I say this gently but there are ways to teach her not to tweak or "paw" at you (as you put it) if that is really what is bothering you about nursing. But I'm not sure as to your motivation(s) for weaning so that may or may not be what's needed.
post #25 of 33
Originally Posted by curiouscanadian View Post
I say this gently but there are ways to teach her not to tweak or "paw" at you (as you put it) if that is really what is bothering you about nursing. But I'm not sure as to your motivation(s) for weaning so that may or may not be what's needed.
Agree. I never allowed that, ever. I treated it like they were putting their hand on the stove. They learn pretty quickly that if they want to nurse they'll keep their hands to themselves.
post #26 of 33
I definitely found that the key was not getting DD out of the crib. Also, that first time I tried, I was convinced DD was starving hungry by 4am, so I would nurse her once 4am hit. Since then, she has been drinking more cow's milk. This time around, I'm surprised she won't drink the cow's milk even when she knows there are no na-nas. I guess she wasn't really hungry after all, and the loss of the 4am feed means she is sleeping 2 HOURS LONGER! Weird...
post #27 of 33
Hi I just wanted to give a quick suggestion. I haven't yet attempted to nite wean my daughter, but did it with great success with my son when he was about 13 months. All I did was at nite when he would wake to nurse, I would first allow him to latch and then a few seconds in I would gently slip my pinky finger into the side of his mouth. For him, he did not like this. He couldn't get a proper latch and would get frustrated. After 3 nites, he gave it up on his own. Looking back, I didn't even plan to wean him. I had just returned to work and could no longer handle the constant waking at nite. So one nite, when he woke me to nurse it just happened by accident. I never even thought about it ahead of time. I knew if I tried to withhold the nursing, he would freak out so somehow I got it in my mind that if I made nursing still available, but un-attractive to him, he might ditch it. All that being said, my daughter is very stubborn and I don't know that it will go as well with her. The last few weeks when she wakes me I let her nurse a bit and have then stuck my finger in and she does give it up. But I've only done this after she's had a good few minutes on and then I just want to go back to sleep already and do this to get her to stop. I might try in a few more weeks to go full off as I might be returning to work soon.
Good luck!
post #28 of 33
Thread Starter 
quick update - we are 3 nights into Dr. Jay and last night was definitely an improvement over the first two. I'm not sure I'm ready to move on to phase two, which is supposed to happen on night four, so we might do one more night of phase one. But so far so good.
post #29 of 33
I have just read through this whole thread. My nights are almost the same as OP. My DS is 22mo. Bed time is about 8pm with a nursing and then to his crib(once he's asleep). He will wake anytime between 11pm and 6am with the average being about 4am. If he wakes before 4am and I bring him to bed with me he will usually go right back to sleep with no "nu nu's" but 4am or after he's demanding it. Sometimes he does ask for nu nu's earlier and if I say no he will have a tantrum if I let him he sometimes falls asleep but often time he starts getting squrimy and flipping and flopping all over then is ready to get up in an hour or so. I'm not ready at 5am or earlier to wake up. If I can hold off till 5am to nurse then by 6-6:30 we will get up and I'm ok with that. It's the flopping all over and him using me as a pasifer and then there is also the rubbing my chest and wanting to poke by belly button that drives me nuts!!! My DH sleeps in another room because he does not like sleeping with DS but my 11yo DD sleeps with me and when DS starts screaming it wakes her and she will not go to her bed (does not want to be alone). I may get the book you all are talking about and just tell the family that we are going to have a rough few nights untill DS knows that he can sleep with out nu nu's.
post #30 of 33
Thread Starter 
savyjoel, fyi it's not a book, it was a link to this site: http://drjaygordon.com/attachment/sleeppattern.html, which has a good solid plan. A good book is the No Cry Sleep Solution, and I think the Dr. Jay plan basically follows the things that Elizabeth Pantley, the author, talks about as gentle tactics for getting your baby to STTN. But she doesn't give a step by step guideline so much as many suggestions, so I like Dr. Jay, it helps me in the middle of the night to know exactly what I'm "supposed" to be doing. Otherwise I'd just get befuddled and go back to nursing, kwim?
post #31 of 33
Thanks--I'll check out the web site. Good luck to all of us in this boat.
post #32 of 33
Erlaine I'm so glad it's going well!!! When you get a chance, please PM or post how you got your DH/DP to commit to trying it, and how you resolved yoru worries about keeping others awake with all the screaming.

Is your LO even screaming? How were the 1st 2 nights?

We're being a little lax about some aspects of our plan this time around, so we're exactly at 2 weeks and still not leaving her in the crib the entire night al the way through morning. BUT... I'm thrilled to report that last night she a) asked to be put in her crib (shock and awe!) so I put her in awake and rubbed her back until she fell asleep; and b) she slept 7 hrs 20 min straight, which is nothing short of a miracle for us!!!

So keep at it, at the rate you're going you'll pass me and have your LO sleeping through the night before mine does!
post #33 of 33
Thread Starter 
Okay, here's an update for LROM et al -

DH/DP was on board from the beginning when I said I just didn't feel like I was being a good mom when DD wanted to nurse in the middle of the night. I often felt like I was going to say something hurtful or use an angry tone with her - or god forbid worse - and the feelings were pretty stressful, and I knew it was time to take care of myself so I could be a better mom. So he was okay with it right from the start.

As far as being worried about how others would feel about the noise, we've just kept communication open with our housemates here in community. Luckily, the most noise sensitive people on our hall are also DD's biggest fans (and her godparents), so if and when they hear her screaming, they feel compassion. DD's room abuts mine on one side and on the other side a fellow who's hardly ever home. So it hasn't been much of an issue.

The first several nights were definitely hard but we've been seeing steady progress, so it continues to make sense to move forward. So we're still nursing to sleep, though when I can (like last night), I delatch her before she actually falls asleep and rub her back till she drifts off. We've developed this mantra (I think I said this in an earlier post) where I just list everyone who takes care of her and loves her, and talk about how those people are either going to sleep or are asleep. "Grandma is asleep. Grandpa is asleep. Auntie is asleep. Jessie is asleep." etc. Sometimes I ask her to help me remember who's asleep, and this usually works very well to put her back to bed.

She's not sleeping for more than 5 hours yet, but I hear her wake up on the monitor and put herself back to sleep - that also happened last night. She went down around 8:30, woke up a little before 11 and settled herself down. Then she woke again around midnight. After that, out till 4:30 and then out again until 6:30 when I nursed her.

The hardest time of the night has definitely been 4:30 - light. Especially if she doesn't wake until 5:30. Then I feel very conflicted. Nurse her since it's so close to morning and I suspect she's actually hungry, or be consistent about no nana till it's light out? This has been the time of the most screaming.

The last thing is the EC part. Now I try to get her to pee as close to sleep time as possible. Then when she wakes up the first time, whenever it is, we pee again before going back to sleep. Then she's fine till morning. I'm still not sure about doing it this way. On the one hand I think that an empty bladder will help her go back to sleep quicker and stay asleep longer. On the other hand I don't want to be teaching her that she has to wake up to pee at some point in the middle of the night, if she can hold it till morning and sleep through the urge to pee. But I also don't want to start using night diapers or having her wet the bed if we don't have to, since it would feel like moving backwards.

So that is the update. Mostly, it's better every night, and she often doesn't even ask for nana when she wakes anymore. So...slow but steady progress! yay!
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