Night weaning - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-21-2011, 08:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello mamas! 

 

I'm new to the forum, hoping I can get some night weaning support from you all :)

My DS is 28 months old. I desperately struggled with his sleep the first 14 months of his life. He slept in a crib in another room, and I actually got up dozens of times each night, living like a zombie during the day. Finally, I wised up and we started co sleeping. It was heaven! I never looked back! 

 

However, I am really ready for him to night wean. But yes, of course, there is a part of me that knows that I will miss it! 

 

I just finished my first semester of grad school and could really use solid sleep. ...But ok, the biggest reason ( which i worry may be selfish of me...) is that DS's dad and I are finally engaged and planning our wedding for late august. WE REALLY WANT A HONEYMOON!! and of course, no one will watch DS unless he sttn. He'll be 33 months old by then, so i really don't feel as though it's too much to ask that the litte bugger sttn! and i'm on spring break now, so it's really a good place to start.

 

I'm going to do Dr. Jay Gordon's method.

 

Tonight is Night 1. I just put him to sleep. Way later than normal as well, 9:40pm! so i doubt he wakes up before the 11 pm cut off...

 

 

 

 

I'm terrified!!!

 

 

Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated!!!

 

Thank you!!!!

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Old 03-22-2011, 08:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Night 1 went amazingly well (knock on wood). DS woke up a little before midnight. I nursed for only a minute on each side, unlatching him as soon as his sucking slowed down. He definitely got upset, but not as angry as I thought he would be. He sounded more sad actually, which would've been hard to take, but he only cried for 1-2 minutes! Then he just tossed and turned, dozing and occasionally whimpering for another 2-3 minutes. And then he was out!
He woke up again around 1:30am, but he barely even nursed before rolling over and passing out.  I think he only woke up so quick because I disturbed him. I got up to use the bathroom and drink a glass of milk. Apparently I'm used to sleeping while nursing as well! I had the most difficult time going to sleep. I was awake for hours!! 
Luckily, DS did not wake up again until 5:30am. It was so close to the 6am rule, but I knew if I gave in early it would just get earlier and earlier. He got the most upset at this waking, yelling "mine! mine!" but again, it only lasted a couple minutes.
 
So far so good!
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Old 03-22-2011, 12:01 PM
 
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Yeah, you may miss it, but night-weaning doesn't mean complete weaning!  Some mamas and babes keep even just one or two feeds a day for a long time :).  Glad last night went well - good idea to do it during a holiday! 

 

I imagine that Dr Gordon's approach has a bit in common with Dr Sears's suggestions, but I like some of his "alternatives for the all-night nurser" - http://www.askdrsears.com/html/7/T070800.asp

 

Good luck for tonight!

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Old 03-23-2011, 08:01 AM
 
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Glad it's going well. My only suggestion is to stick with it! You may have a rough few nights but mine did great one totally stopped nursing at night. No nursing in bed, ever. It was clear and quick.

DS (6.06), DD (10.08), DD (05.11).

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Old 03-23-2011, 08:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Night 2: 
 
DS got a little angrier last night. But it was still manageable! He is already waking less. He woke again before midnight, later at another time early in the a.m (not sure) and then at 5. He nursed at 6:30am and then slept til 8:15 am when he got up. I'm feeling good about this. I think that's the difference between now and any other time I've tried nightweaning. I feel good, and am more confident that we will be able to see this through!
 
 
 
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Old 03-23-2011, 09:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah, you may miss it, but night-weaning doesn't mean complete weaning!  Some mamas and babes keep even just one or two feeds a day for a long time :).  Glad last night went well - good idea to do it during a holiday! 

 

I imagine that Dr Gordon's approach has a bit in common with Dr Sears's suggestions, but I like some of his "alternatives for the all-night nurser" - http://www.askdrsears.com/html/7/T070800.asp

 

Good luck for tonight!

 

 

Yes, I believe he will wanna keep up day nursing when we're together. THe sad time will come in August when I start student teaching. It will be like a full time job :( I will miss my baby!!! (I mean big-boy lol) 

 

Thanks for the link. I'm about to check it out! 



 



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Glad it's going well. My only suggestion is to stick with it! You may have a rough few nights but mine did great one totally stopped nursing at night. No nursing in bed, ever. It was clear and quick.
 
Thanks mama! I'm definitely sticking with it this time! I've got my eye on the prize: a honeymoon on the beach in August :) 


 

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Old 03-24-2011, 09:14 AM
 
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Good going!  Here's hoping it gets easier each night :)

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Old 03-28-2011, 09:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Sorry to have disappeared! I didn't have access to a computer for a few days. Of course, just as things seem to be moving along perfectly with nightweaning, we run into a kink at home. You see, DS and I have been living with my mother since he was 3 months old. The other night after bathtime I discovered something quite horrifying. I was looking for my blowdryer to dry DS's hair. It had fallen out of its usuall spot on a shelf into the main area below the bathroom sink. When i pulled it out  it was soaking wet. A leak! I cleaned everything out (we never used anything under there) and discovered a terrifying amount of mold. Long, scary story short, I had a mold inspector come out who then discovered another bad situation involving our heat//air. The exhaust is not connected, so carbon monoxide and etc have been recirculating througgh oour home! i started crying right then. THank God my child is even alive!! Thank God he never sttn!!

So we are now staying at DS's other grandparents house with daddy.

So i was torn, do i continue with nightweaning?! I feel like his little body needs milk more than ever to get over all these poor air quality issues. However, we were doing so good, and i know if I stop he may be less likely to accept it as well later...
So i decided to stay in phase 1 of gordon's plan a few days longer to help keep his milk intake up and to let him get used to our new sleeping arrangements.
Night 3- very angry. i think he was surprised to find we were still going to do this even at nana's house. but still, he was quick to be over his anger and back to sleep.
Night 4- took it much better
Night 5- First night without 'nuneez' at all from 11pm-6am. I decided to go through with this because he was starting to nurse more during the day and at night he wasn't really nursing much.
Night 6 (last night) he started to go back to sleep with a quick pat and a 'shhh' although there were two times he got pretty upset. but again didn;t last long!!
 
I cannot believe we are doing this and that it is going so well!! I'm so proud of my DS =) 

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Old 03-31-2011, 09:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Night 7 : DS got majorly PO'd!!  He woke several times and expressed that he was very angry with our new routine. It was so hard to get him back to sleep, but we stuck it out. I was not expecting this because he had been doing so well up to this point. The next day was so exhausting for all of us (we're staying with daddy now and he gets up at 5 am).

A friend assured me that we are still on track. She said that yes, he probably is not happy with the new routine and had to give us all he has to try and change it back to his way. He put up a fight, but we didn't back down. She said that maybe it would be the turning point...

Night 8: Oh please let her be right! this night went much smoother. Especially because I realized he needed a sip of water here and there. He would wake up upset, and I would ask, "do you need a drink?" "yeah" ...he would drink a bit of water, lay back down, and go to sleep on his own. wow!!

Night 9: Last night was great!! He had a random wake up at 11:15pm, but after that he slept until 5 am. Had a drink of water and then slept til 7:30 am when he climbed up on me and said "yay, 'nuneez' up! " So cute  I'm so glad that we are doing this while continuing to cosleep, but I think we're all starting to run out of room in our little full sized bed!!

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Old 03-31-2011, 10:08 AM
 
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Thank you for posting this -

 

My Dd is 25 Months and has always been a poor sleeper.  She is still waking up at least 2 times a night on a good night and I am so tired of it!  She slept through the night from Thanksgiving into January and then stopped due to illness, travelling, an ill mama, and then traveling and another illness.  So...I know she can do it!!  Anyways, I am curious about this jay gordon method.  Is this from a book he wrote, or is it something I can access online? 

 

I had thought that the only way to night wean would be either she does it on her own or that daddy would have to deal with all wakings for a while.  Daddy is not a very good night time parent and over the past two months night weaning is the only this we argue about.  If I complain about DD wanting to nurse (which is not that often, but sometimes I just reach my threshold!) he says that I have brought this upon myself.  Last night we got in a fight at 1am and he said that we could start night weaning on Monday, but the best way would be to move DD's crib back into her room.  I said, that is fine, but you need to be with her, this isn't letting a 2 year old cry it out!  He said that if he is doing the night weaning he can do whatever he wants.  So, long story short, I know that he isn't going to do it the way I want him to (to comfort her until she falls back to sleep).

 

Does anyone have any articles on night weaning methods or something I can share with him?  He isn't a big reader, but I need something so that he understands the process! 


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Old 03-31-2011, 12:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh mama, i feel your pain! DS/s dad hasn't lived with us much of DS's life, but he has stayed with us and vice versa numerous times. He has never really done any nighttime parenting. He's not mean about it, he just feels helpless like there's nothing he can do to help. plus, he sleeps like a rock so DS could be crying right next to him and chances are he would not hear!! 

 

http://drjaygordon.com/attachment/sleeppattern.html

 

Here is the link btw to jay gordon's method. He is a huge proponent of extended bfing and cosleeping. A lot of bfing mothers have had success with this method. I tried it once when DS was 1. At the time we did not co sleep yet (i was a zombie!!), and DS  slept in a crib in another room. I would never suggest night weaning like this!!!! While he was probably too young at the time, I feel as though it also didn't work because I had to keep getting up out of bed to go to him, not nurse him, and hear him cry. it was exhausting. This time has been amazing because for one he is old enough now that I can talk to him about it and know he understands, even if its just a little. ANd for two, i don't have to get out of bed. i'm right there next to him! I can even stay half way asleep sometimes as i pat his back and shhhh him. I've never had to pick him up or walk around with him. I've just had to endure a few minutes of crying and know that I am right there with him and he's ok. But i think he was ready. i've been telling him for quite some time now that when mr sun goes down nuneez will go night night. then i'd start  asking him , " do you wake up at night?" and he'd say "yeah!" Then i'd tell him, "no wake up. Nuneez go night night." THen for a couple nights before i started the process I would whisper 'nuneez go night night' as he drifted to sleep while nursing. that way when i started the nightweaning and he would get upset I would tell him nuneez go night night and feel confident that he understood. the first couple nights when i would say that he would calm down after a couple minutes of crying and let me pat him to sleep. but after awhile it sometimes just made him more mad! i had to realize that this is going to piss him off but i just have to be persistent. Recently i've realized that sometimes it's best if i don't talk to him at all. On that really bad night a few nights ago Nothing i said or did calmed him down. I just said, mama's here, mama loves you, you'll have nuneez when mr sun gets up, and had to let him be mad at me until he finally gave up and went to sleep.

If you already cosleep I would highly suggest keeping your daughter in the bed with you. I found that since i knew why he was crying i could continue to rest while shhhshing and patting. ( unlike nights when your child is suddenly upset and you have to fully wake up to figure out why). I imagined nightweaning would mean several nights of no one getting any sleep, but was very surprised that i could almost sleep through the whole thing! no i don't just sleep through it and ignore his turmoil, but I don't have to fully awake to let him feel my comfort next to him. 

Of course, his dad was not sleeping with us most of the nights at the beginning of the process. I'd say if your DH does not want to help and does not want his sleep disturbed that he camp out on the couch. I think moving her to her crib will just make the whole process more exhausting for you. and i'm learning that my being well rested and emotionally stable and confident is what is making this much easier than the first time I tried.  GOOD LUCK!!!

 

PS: i'm still in the process, and am learning as I go!!! 

 

 

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Old 03-31-2011, 12:14 PM
 
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Thanks so much for your insight!  I printed out Dr. Jay Gordon's instructions and I am planning on starting on Monday.  DD has a toddler bed in our room that she sleeps in for about half the night and then she normally ends up in bed with us.  She and I are both sprawlers so full time co-sleeping is tough.  I feel better now that I have a plan that I will be in control of rather than my DH and I fighting over him wanting her to cry it out!!  Good luck to you and I will keep you posted how next week goes!


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Old 03-31-2011, 12:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh I understand on the sprawling. we are actually with DS's dad full time now. we were planning on moving in with each other in June but had to recently move over here due to problems in the home DS and I were living in. These guys are the sprawlers in our bed! And they both go to bed earlier than me too. so when i sneak into the bed around 11 pm it's hard to find a place to lay down in! DS has a toddler bed at my mother's house, but there just isn't room for it here. my plan was to get him sttn pretty well and then work on trying to get him to do it in his own bed. while i've loved co sleeping, and defnitely love it during this night weaning process, trying to get him to sleep in his own bed and eventually in his own room is definitely the goal. although that will have to wait until we get our own place with more room (now we are with Ds's dad's parents---wow, confusing! our lives are a mess right now!!) 

 

Keep me posted! 

As i was preparing for this I was always looking online for nightweaning support groups and testimonies. It really helped to boost my confidence to read about other's success! 

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Old 04-01-2011, 12:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Night 10:

 

oh my goodness! DS slept all night last night!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! he went to bed around 9:30pm and slept til 6:30am!!!!!!!!!! THen he got his nuneez and dozed til around 7:30am. I'm so proud of him :) YAY!!!! I still can't believe this is happening. He has always woken up countless times through the night. Here's to more sttn! 

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Old 04-01-2011, 06:09 PM
 
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That is sooooo awesome!  that gives me home that in two weeks my DD will be sttn too!  I will let you know how next week goes!  enjoy your sleep!


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Old 04-02-2011, 01:01 PM
 
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Fab news, mama.  Shows that gentle weaning with love is possible :).

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Old 04-04-2011, 07:10 AM
 
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I did night one last night and it went fine.  I think I was kind of already doing it anyways.  Although, we are going to shift the hours from 11-6 to 10-5, because this morning she woke up and wanted to nurse at almost 5 and because I only nursed her for 2 minutes she wanted to get up for the day!  I think the second three days is going to be the roughest part for us, I will keep you posted!


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Old 04-06-2011, 10:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I did night one last night and it went fine.  I think I was kind of already doing it anyways.  Although, we are going to shift the hours from 11-6 to 10-5, because this morning she woke up and wanted to nurse at almost 5 and because I only nursed her for 2 minutes she wanted to get up for the day!  I think the second three days is going to be the roughest part for us, I will keep you posted!



Ava's mama, I'm glad to hear that you are off to a good start! We were already kind of doing gordon's phase one too by practicing Pantley's pull off. However, during gordon's process I would always take it away as soon as his sucking slowed down and would not give it back. That way he could get used to falling asleep on his own. As far as the 5 am thing goes do whatever works for you! I was worried DS would do the exact same thing your LO is doing, but was surprised to be wrong. Those first nights into the process he would always wake up around 5:30 am but I still did not nurse. He was always the most upset during these wakings, but thank god never wanted to get up for the day! 

 

Update from us:  i don't want to discourage you, but this is definitely a process. Last week i was amazed when DS sttn after 10 nights. I was ecstatic! thrilled! and then on the next two nights he was backed to being mad!!! :(  He has not sttn again yet. but his wakings have been very brief and few. he usually wants a drink of water and a hug and then he'll settle back down. But when he wakes up at 6 or 7 and can nurse again it is non stop! and his nursing sessions during the day are always a lot longer too.

 

THis is actually night 2 of something different we're trying. Daddy has been putting DS to bed! A lot of mom's have success when daddy takes over bedtime because it further helps to break the nursing to sleep habit. We bought one of those Cloud B star projection turtles and so far DS loves it! Daddy lays in bed with him as they look at the stars and he's out within minutes! awww...my little boy is growing up!! 

 

Good luck again ava's mama! this too shall pass...right?!?! 

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Old 04-06-2011, 10:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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PS: i wanted to add that I just adore our nursing times even more now! I'm ready to stop the nigh nursing, but knowing that before long he will most likely be weaned completely makes me really want to enjoy the time we have left at this stage in our relationship. bawling.gif

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Old 04-07-2011, 09:16 AM
 
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Last night was night four and it was a little rough.  I had a class last night, so daddy put her to bed.  She woke up at 11 and was upset but not hysterical and fell back to sleep after about 15 minutes.  She woke again at 3:45 and was hysterical, so upset that she took her jammies off.    I finally gave in at 4:15 when daddy went to the guest room, but only nursed for a minute.  She settled for a few minutes, got upset again and I nursed her again for a minute, then finally at 5 I nursed her a full session and she fell asleep until 6:45.  Do I have to start all over since I cheated?  Did I ruin the whole thing??  I am hoping tonight will be better because I will put her to bed (she nurses but I put her to bed awake) AND daddy always puts her to bed super early (last night 6:15!! her normal bedtime is 7-7:30!!).  I will keep you posted!  Thanks for your support!  I like the idea of the cloud nine turtle!


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Old 04-20-2011, 12:51 PM
 
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So, the fifth night she got pretty upset again and I decided to walk down stairs to calm her down.  I told her how the birdies and everyone else were sleeping.  I explained how the birds eat dinner and then they go to bed and the eat again in the morning.  So, that helped ALOT!  Anyways, it has been almost three weeks now since we starts Jay Gordon's method and we are fully night weaned.  Disclaimer: nightweaning does not mean she sleeps through the night!!  Oh well, it was worth a shot!


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Old 08-01-2011, 09:25 AM
 
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Thank you ladies for posting about your night-weaning process as you have gone through it.  I'm thinking we might do it as well, and reading your experiences has helped a lot. :)  Mine is 11.5mo, but I'm like a zombie anymore during the day.  Still trying to decide what to do though...

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