So I want to night-wean, mostly because we're trying to get knocked up again and I'm pretty sure the BFing is inhibiting that given that I haven't even gotten my period back yet. Even though the amount of BFing has decreased anwyay, I'm hoping that night-weaning will be enough to tip the scales in favor of fertility. Never mind that she's also gone back to a pretty rough overnight schedule that is definitely having an adverse effect on my health - physical and mental.
She can go to sleep without the breast though rarely without a little bit of crying, though we don't CIO. I have read NCSS, but I'm not sure if I have the patience or freedom in our schedule to do it - my husband can't really help middle of the night and we travel a lot.
Anyway, what did you do to night-wean? Thanks for your input!
New mom who left a life at sea for my DH, my "firstborn", 10-month old puppy Betsy - Lab/Border Collie mix - and my DD Amelia, born June 2 and growing like a weed
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I think 15m is too young to night wean but if you are intent on it I've good things about Dr. Newman's protocals. I did nightwean one older toddler using it and it went well.
Also, don't confuse night nursing with sleeping through the night. Totally different things.
I night weaned DS1 at about 16 months. I was pregnant and the nausea/exhaustion were getting to me-- so I felt like I needed a good chunk of sleep (not sure how long your LO can go for at night without feeding, but with mine it was every 45 minutes to an hour and I was just SO DONE.) For us, this had to be the end of co-sleeping, too, at least for the first part of the night, because if my son was near my body, he would want to nurse. And in our case, not nursing during the night did end up making DS1 sleep for much longer stretches. But even at 6, he sometimes still doesn't sleep through the night!
Really my DH can take most of the credit for making the switch. We started slowly by dropping feedings. So for instance, I would nurse him the first time he woke up, but then for the second time DH would take him, and then he was allowed to nurse again around 4-5am. Is there a reason your DH can't help during the night-- is he the one traveling a lot? I have to say this would be pretty difficult at this age without another parent to sooth your LO. It's not impossible-- but it will probably be a lot more work for you (at first).
Jean, feminist mama raising three boys: W (7), E (5) and L (2.15.13)
I started trying to night wean my youngest ds when he was 18 months old using the Dr. Jay Gordon method.
It was going fairly well, but then he had a serious illness, then a serious injury, etc etc. so we kept having to start over. DS is now nearly 26 months old, and I've just recently been able to get him to go without nursing from 7pm until 5am. He will usually wake up around 2 or 3am, but goes back to sleep quickly with a cuddle.
I'm trying to get to 6am without nursing, and we're close...just not there yet. I found that Dr. Sears' method of "nursies are going night night...they'll be ready to nurse again when the sun comes up" really worked well for my ds. Better than the Dr. Jay method. However, now that the days are getting shorter and the sun doesn't come up until 7am or so...things are getting tricky again.
I think if your 15 month old is very verbal and can understand your new limits, you can successfully night wean in a gentle way. My kids wouldn't have been ready then, but I know others that are.