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If you are Ext. BFing & co-sleeping with your young toddler, does s/he STTN? (x-p in 2 forums) - Page 2

post #21 of 28

Your little one sounds just like my 15 month old. We're still breastfeeding exclusively, my son nurses to sleep, and still wakes up every 1.5-2 hours to nurse. We've tried getting him to go to sleep using different techniques, but no luck--he's dedicated to his boobies! I don't really have any advice, just wanted to lend an ear and let you know you're not alone. From what I've heard, frequent night waking is pretty normal for breastfeeding, co-sleeping babes--some moms are just lucky enough to be able to sleep through it! Since catching up on sleep during the day isn't an option for me, I've been trying to recharge in other ways so I don't get totally bogged down by sleep exhaustion. Here's hoping that longer stretches of sleep are in the future for both of us!

post #22 of 28
My babe was sleeping through the night at 6 months.
post #23 of 28

DD2 is 14 months and wakes at least every 2 hours through the night. I would night wean her in a second, because I know she is not waking from hunger, but she is so tiny! I worry about her getting enough calories every day. She's been slowly falling off of her curve, from 20% to 5% and I need to get food into her by any route. When she shows more interest in food during the day I will wean her at night... but my question has always been... Why in heck does she wake up so much? Putting her to sleep is no problem. First time down at night she takes a bottle from DH and plays around a bit to settle down and go to sleep. No complaints. We go to bed about an hour later and DH sleeps next to DD (she is in a twin with rails pushed right up next to our king). We use white noise, room temp is consistent, no binding clothes or blankets to roll up in, very dark... what is waking her all night? Luckily she goes right back to sleep with a short nurse, sometimes DH can rock her back to sleep but not often. Man I'm tired.

post #24 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Churrl View Post


Okay... I'm just looking through this thread and I'm intrigued by this response.  We EC also, but I've never taken her at night b/c I didn't want to wake her all the way up... I just change her diaper once between midnight and 2am.  But, if I understand this correctly, by taking him out of bed and nursing him in a chair and changing the diaper or offer the potty, he's actually waking less?  Maybe b/c he knows he won't just be nursed right back to sleep?  I have never heard of anyone doing this.  

 

I have more questions! :)

 

1. Does he fuss when you put him back down to sleep after diaper/nursing?  Is he groggy when you put him down?

2. What other changes did you make?

 

Some background-

 

My 11.5mo sleeps on some blankets next to our bed for naps and part of the night.  We made a lot of progress with her sleeping recently and she was taking two two-hour naps without waking and sleeping for 3-4 hours for the first "shift" at night.  But then she wakes every hour to nurse.  Sometimes I bring her back to bed with us, but I try to nurse her back to sleep on her "bed" because she tends to sleep better there (or is it me who sleeps better? hehe.)  I can't seem to stretch her out longer than that.  And to make matters worse, she's just started walking and has just started teething, so she's regressing.  *Sigh*

 

But I am comforted by others who say that their children wake as much as mine does.  I'd like to night-wean, but it sounds like a painful process and I'm not sure I'm ready for it.


I think it helps his sleep in two ways:

- Makes him more comfortable - he might have woken up because he had to pee or was wet, or had gas, or was burpy, or occasionally had to poop, and if I just nursed him, it wouldn't properly help any of those things.  Nursing is comforting so it would help him calm down temporarily but not help the cause of the waking.

- It's not quite so easy for him to nurse, so he has to really want it.  For example, sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night a bit hungry, but I don't want to deal with getting up, getting food out, cleaning it up, brushing my teeth, etc., so I don't usually bother, I just go back to sleep.

 

I know a lot of ECing mamas will nurse while on the potty but he refuses to do that.

 

To answer your specific questions:

1. He only fusses when I put him back down to sleep if he is burpy or gassy (in which case I pick him back up and try to get burps out, if that doesn't work I'd take him back to the potty).  He is not always groggy when I put him down and might roll around and play with his teddy bear for a while, but I can just lie down next to him and go to sleep while he goes back to sleep.  If it is early in the night (say, before or around midnight) then he usually goes back to sleep very quickly (maybe 10-15 minutes total waking time, including the potty, new diaper,  nursing, and falling back asleep), if it is early morning (4-6 am) then it usually takes much longer but again it is him rolling around while I lie next to him drifting off.

 

But we have also been mostly putting him to sleep this way (lying down next to him while he plays with his bear and winds down) for months now.  We used to sometimes need a paci at first but most of the time now we don't need it and I almost never need it in the middle of the night (I never let him sleep with the paci in, it was just to help him calm down initially). 

 

2. Other changes we made around the same time included moving him from our bed to a sidecarred mattress on the floor (this helped my sleep more than his but then I was then rested enough to start thinking about taking him to the potty), different white noise (we have a playlist on an ipod that has lullabies followed by white noise), using a humidifier, figuring out the right amount of nightlights, and finding a nighttime diaper that worked for us (trim and comfortable for him, fit well and absorbent enough to avoid leaks, and reasonably easy to remove/put on in the middle of the night).  Also keeping a log of his wakings which really helped to track patterns and figure out what changes helped and what did not.
 

I don't know if it will help anyone else but it works for us.  I think I started to see longer stretches of sleep after a few days and it kept getting better overall after that.  I hope this makes sense but let me know if you have any other questions.  Good luck!  It is very hard being so sleep deprived all the time. hug2.gif

 

post #25 of 28

Quote:
Originally Posted by hakeber View Post

I thought night weaning DD would be this awful experience, but when we moved her to her own bed in her own room she simply didn't wake up for it.  From the very first night she slept 6 then 8 now 10+ hours straight. When she does wake up some time between 4 and 6am she comes to our bed and nurses and there is a 50% chance she might go back to sleep.

 

I know you didn't ask me, but I started ECing with Emily when she was a few days old.  Nowadays (at 18 mos) she wakes up dry at about 5 or 6 and has a pee in a potty under her as I nurse her.  When she was small I did the same.  It never woke her more than nursing did.  I use nappies as back up that are pretty easy to undo and redo. 


Thanks for your insight... it's certainly appreciated! :)  I actually tried moving myself to another room one night just to see if it helped (her room isn't totally baby-proofed yet).  She was still up every hour.  Ugh.  And right now she does sleep on her own little "bed" next to our bed.  Hers is a little pile of blankets with a wool pad to soak up any leaks.

 

I do think I might try taking her to the potty at 5 or 6am, though.  She definitely gets a lot more squirmy at that time and does stay dry most of the night.  And we do nurse while on the potty, so I can do that too.  We'll give that a shot tonight and see how it goes.

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by gitanamama View Post
I don't really have any advice, just wanted to lend an ear and let you know you're not alone. 
Here's hoping that longer stretches of sleep are in the future for both of us!


Thanks. :)



Quote:
Originally Posted by cassandraz View Post

My babe was sleeping through the night at 6 months.


Not helpful. hehe.



Quote:
Originally Posted by somegirl99 View Post

I think it helps his sleep in two ways:

- Makes him more comfortable - he might have woken up because he had to pee or was wet, or had gas, or was burpy, or occasionally had to poop, and if I just nursed him, it wouldn't properly help any of those things.  Nursing is comforting so it would help him calm down temporarily but not help the cause of the waking.

- It's not quite so easy for him to nurse, so he has to really want it.  For example, sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night a bit hungry, but I don't want to deal with getting up, getting food out, cleaning it up, brushing my teeth, etc., so I don't usually bother, I just go back to sleep.


Huh... this makes total sense.  I'm not sure if I'm rested enough right now to try this, but I think we might try it later.  And thanks for answering my questions.  All helpful and food for thought for me. :)

 

post #26 of 28

Churrl...she's still quite young to STTN, even my DS who STTN at about 2 months (like 8-10 hours) would wake a lot from 10-13 months because of the molars and general sleep regression...I would revisit night weaning when she is closer to finishing her first big molar push.

 

post #27 of 28

Your experience sounds very much like mine.  We co-slept and breastfed our son until very recently (he's now 23 months).  At 18 months we night-weaned because he still wanted to nurse every 2-3 hours.  He was very verbal already so I could explain it to him and after a tough week, he understood that he wouldn't get to nurse until the sun came up and he did finally make steps towards sleeping through the night.  Night weaning definitely helped us get to STTN, but I wasn't ready to take this step until he was old enough to understand what I was telling him ("it's nighttime.  Mama's sleeping, Dada's sleeping, nursy's sleeping.  You can nurse again when the sun comes up, now is time for sleep.").  I really wanted to continue co-sleeping but was scared it wouldn't be compatible with night-weaning.  Luckily for us, we were able to reach some understanding and continue cuddling.  It made that first morning nursing session extra special too!

 

From 20-23 months, he has grown up so much!  He now sleeps in a toddler bed in his room, most of the time for the whole night (once or twice per week he'll come to our bed before 6am, and every morning comes to our bed for some cuddles before we all get up together).  He is always welcome in our bed, but we do put him to bed in his bed to start each night because we are all happy with this arrangement.

 

 

post #28 of 28

My DD woke up every 2-4 hours to nurse at that age.  She night weaned herself after my milk dried up (due to pregnancy), which was an easy transition.  I'm sure that she'd still be nursing 1-3 times a night at 24mo if I had any milk left.  I think that it's totally within a normal range to nurse all night at 16mo. 

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