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post #21 of 24

I feel for you!! My first baby was a preemie, so I had to wake him up every two hours to feed him, whether he wanted or not, so as to insure his weight gain. This set the rhythm for the entire first year, he just molded to that schedule. I was so exhausted which effected my milk supply, which effected my confidence in nursing. But, I stuck with it and everything worked out. Everyone who has replied has pretty much covered anything I have to offer. One of the things that really helped was having a partner who would do at least one shift in the night with a bottle. So if you have pumped milk and baby will take a bottle, maybe you can try it on the weekend. Do you have anyone who can help with that if your partner can't? Friend or family member? There are postpartum doulas you can hire, and if you can not afford one, there are doulas in training who will sometimes work for free or on a sliding scale to get the experience. Go to the DONA website and see if they can help find someone in your area. Don't even look at a clock! Don't keep track of the time. It doesn't matter. Go to bed when your baby does, even if its at 7 or 8 at night, and take naps when he does. I am a terrible nap taker, so that was very hard for me. Even if you just lay down for an hour and close your eyes, it helps. When I had my second child, I bought ear plugs and sleeping mask and mastered the art of naps! Lots of love to you.

post #22 of 24

Thank you ladies for sharing honestly! Sometimes I feel like I'm losing my mind as well. Some nights DS is tired of nursing and just CANNOT get back to sleep even though he's clearly exhausted! This will be after he's sucked both of my boobs dry! I usually end up having to get up and rock him back to sleep. And when I'm so tired like that I start to think irrationally. It is a very hard part of being a mother for sure.

I keep wondering if women have been suffering like this at night forever or if there used to be more of a collective of women who would help each other so that mother could get some sleep some nights...

post #23 of 24
Originally Posted by Ginger Bean View Post

The best thing I did for my sleep was to get rid of my alarm clock with the glowing red numbers. It was like this thing staring me in the face, taunting me all night.


Whether my son woke up 2 times or 6 times, I got back to sleep easier. When I wasn't constantly reminded of what time it was, I was able to relax and nurse him while dozing myself. He would unlatch when he had enough and go back to sleep. Sometimes I didn't wake up until an hour later and would find him peacefully sleeping with his mouth next to my nipple -- it was cute!


I did exactly the same thing :D


post #24 of 24

So glad to see this after the night I had.  DS was up every 2 hours or so and wanted to nurse.  Course I worked on Sunday as well and didn't have as much time to catch up on my sleep this weekend (DH usually does early AM on the weekends so I can sleep in and not be a grouch all weekend).


DS is only 8 mos and I think he is too young to deny nursing, but I can't really sleep with him in the bed anymore since he moves way too much.  We bed-shared from day 1, but had to go to co-sleeping most of the night (DS in a crib in our room) around 6 mos since he moved so much that I was waking up every time he twitched.


I reached a point with DS #1 around 11 months when we let him cry during certain feedings at night (1:30 am).  Not all night feedings, but some.  He was in a crib in our room and we talked and sang to him but didn't take him out to nurse.  He hated it but the crying only lasted 3 days or so.  The longest he cried was 45 mins.  It seemed like forever and DH and I weathered it together.  It was this or quit breastfeeding for me.  I had turned into such a grouch from sleep deprivation, it was really affecting my relationship with DH and my work.  Once I got rid of 1 nighttime feed so I could have some REM sleep, he kinda phased out the rest himself little by little.


While many moms may not approve, I couldn't function anymore & my pumped milk was for during the day when I was working (DS wouldn't drink frozen so I had a hard time keeping up with him).


I kept nursing DS #1 until he was over 2 - mostly night and morning and some weekend naps.  When I look back at it, I enjoyed nursing DS #1 so much more when I wasn't sleep deprived and crazy.  I got to interact with my son, sing to him and really be there for him this way instead of just wishing him to hurry up and be done so I could sleep a little.  He is very attached to myself and DH so I don't think it harmed him.


That said, still haven't done it with DS#2 - he isn't ready yet.  I think I will know when he is ready and can understand like his brother that "nanas are ni-ni" my breasts are night-night. This is when I did it with DS #1.

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