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11 mo pacifying on breast all night -- losing sleep

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

My daughter is almost 12 months old. For the last month or so, she has gradually developed a dread of the moment I offer her a binki when she's done nursing. To the point that starting a couple weeks ago she started refusing the binki and went all through the night without it. She had to make her statement that it was just not cool to give her a binki instead of the breast.


Well, starting a few days ago DD has begun WAILING when I pop her off so I can turn over and go to sleep. She demands me to give it back to her and let her sleep that way. This has never been a problem before!! Obviously, I am losing sleep over this. Last night she had a full on tantrum over it after I told her "All done, no more milk left, all done."


Anyone have any advice on how to parent her through this? Is there hope? Any way she can *learn* that she will not get to pacify on my breast?! Or do I need to *learn* how to sleep through it?!

post #2 of 10

My daughter would LOVE to pacify on my breast all night if I let her, but I dont.  When she was first born she would nurse for an hour, and she was an awesome nurser, she was full in like 15 minutes but would pacify the rest of the time.  I just took her off and dealt with the crying...she did eventually get the picture and stop the crying for the breast.

post #3 of 10

The No-Cry Sleep Solution might work for you; the whole idea behind it is slowly moving away from nursing to sleep. You can still co-sleep and do it.


How often does she nurse at night? Out of necessity (my supply didn't match her needs anymore), there came a point when I had to start physically getting out of bed and supplementing Cecilia at night. The bad part was getting out of bed when I'd only been asleep for an hour or two. But then something really wonderful happened-- she started sleeping bigger and bigger stretches, because she was getting a full nursing instead of taking little sips and falling back asleep, then repeating that an hour or two later. So now, at 11 months, she generally gets up once a night to nurse, and sleeps the rest of the time. So if you can, consider consolidating to one or two full nursings, where you stay awake long enough to know she's gotten a lot of milk.

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Aimee, great ideas.. the only thing is I AM positive she's getting full servings at night. When my supply significantly went down last week due to illness, she would nurse every 30 minutes at night (which was torture!) but now that it's back she's nursing more than ever. I even wonder if it's beCAUSE my supply went down recently that she's just taking as much as she can get when she can get it because she knows what it feels like to run out! :/


I fear I'm going to just have to go through a few nights of holding her while she cries because I won't let her have anymore. I just don't know any other way to do this.

post #5 of 10

We're in the midst of a similar ordeal.  He was waking up more times than I could count and I was feeling so run-down that I actually just got "No Cry Sleep Solution" from the library and am trying out parts of it in sections.

He sleeps part of the night in his crib so right now we're working on making the crib a happy place.  We've also managed to get him attached to a lovey in the past week or so.  It is this super soft bear that he loves to hug.  I'll hear him fussing and then it stops and I look in on him and he's back to sleep hugging the bear.  I did exactly what the book said and I hold the bear between us every time he nurses.  Incidentally it has really helped with the pinching mama game during nursing because he pinches the bear instead.  Maybe that would work for Eden.  Associating the lovey with nursing. Maybe...who knows...I keep telling myself that at some point he will sleep all night.

We still wake up too many times and I find myself painfully jealous of anyone who gets even semi-normal sleep but I at least feel like I'm being proactive about it now.

I'm going to try actually getting up with him tonight and sitting down in a comfy chair for a full feeding and see what happens. 



post #6 of 10

So there with you right now.  Holding my 6 mo old who has been screaming in my arms for 20 mins so far because I will not give her the boob.  She was on it for most of the first 2 hrs of her sleep (like usual) andI'm cracking down.  So tired and hurting from 5+ months of all-night nursing.  Hard habit to break with her 3 yr old brother in the bed too since I can't just let her cry.  And the crying is so heart-breaking.

post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

I'm so sorry Megan. I feel your pain. The crying here is so severe.


I've been trying to be consistent with saying "All done, no milk left, all done," when she's clearly just pacifying, and definitely overeating. Then I hold her as she cries, sing to her, and lean back on some pillows and hold her until she is totally calm again, getting sleepy again. Last night I tried introducing the binki at this point, and she actually took it! So that helped. And then I lay her down again, only to have more asking of the breast and more crying, and just repeated the same scenario. It was so painful. But she'll have to learn at some point, right?!


Eleanor, good to know Ruben is loving his lovey. I've been trying to get Eden attached to this beautiful blanket I knit for her for about 6 months now. She likes to rub it while we nurse, but so far I haven't noticed any kind of real attachment to it. :/ But it gives me hope.


post #8 of 10

I also get up out of bed with DS and actually go sit in the glider we have in his room to nurse him.  Our pediatrician told me to not let him sleep more than 2-3 hour blocks during the day and try to keep him up for at least 10 minutes, then let him fall back asleep if he was still sleepy.  This is so when his body is capable of handling sleeping longer periods of time then he would sleep those longer blocks at nighttime.  So I do make sure to wake him about every 2-2.5 hours during the day, usually he will nurse and then stay awake for a while.  So far it has worked, he sleeps for about 4-5 hour stretches at night, gets up and nurses for 10-15 minutes, then goes back to sleep for 3-4 hours. 

post #9 of 10

I am breastfeeding my baby also.  Just a small piece of advice.  If you are convinced that your baby is not getting enough milk from you at night...give her a 4 oz bottle of formula before nursing.  My son passes out after a bottle and then breatfeeding on both sides.  I was totally opposed to formula until I got fed up with my baby never getting full enough at night.

post #10 of 10

October, I'm sorry I don't have any advice for you.  I just wanted to tell you that the little one in your avatar picture is just about the cutest baby I have ever seen!

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