Still nursing my 2 year old and need advice on how to wean without upsetting my DD - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 12 Old 12-25-2012, 08:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm nursing my 2 year old through the night (she ends up in our bed most nights as I'm too tired to sit with her while she falls back asleep after waking up and crying for me) and after she wakes up from a nap. I recently had a miscarriage and my ob-gyn said I should stop nursing before I get pregnant again as once you hit 10 weeks your uterus contracts while nursing and she didn't want to risk anything happening again. So my question is: I want to wean my DD before we start trying again but I don't want to upset her during the night and after naps. My husband works a lot
of hours and needs his sleep so he's not too keen in assisting me with this process. Any advice?? I don't have much milk anyways, more for comfort for her (and selfishly so I can sleep at night and sleep in a little!).
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#2 of 12 Old 12-25-2012, 08:53 PM
 
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I am so sorry for your loss.

Personally, I would research your OB's opinion, before taking nursing away from your daughter. 50% of women have a least one miscarriage, and usually it is for chromosomal reasons (accident of nature) and your nursing very likely had nothing whatsoever to do with it. If I were in your position, I would do some research on the subject, and perhaps look for a second opinion.

Best of luck.


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#3 of 12 Old 12-26-2012, 10:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for your reply. It was a chromosomal issue. The ob didnt say i miscarried because of nursing- she just said you should probably stop to avoid possibility something going wrong. But maybe I will ask around. I had to change ob's because we moved.
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#4 of 12 Old 12-26-2012, 11:35 AM
 
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I weaned my son at about that age, and I'm sorry, I know of no way to do it without upsetting the child.  Weaning is upsetting.

 

I wore a high-necked sports-bra type tank top to bed.  I offered water and crackers as middle of the night alternatives.  But the entire process sucked, and there was no getting around it.

 

I agree that it's worth researching the OB's opinion - if you prefer to keep nursing, absolutely research whether you really need to stop.  I miscarried, probably because of a chromosomal issue, shortly after weaning DS.  If the miscarriage really was caused by a chromosomal issue, weaning or not weaning or having uterine contractions or not had nothing to do with it. 

 

I'm sorry for your loss.

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#5 of 12 Old 12-26-2012, 12:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I appreciate your feedback. Sorry for your loss as well. I just can't stand the crying at night but I think I'm doomed. It's easier to distract after a nap than at night.
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#6 of 12 Old 12-26-2012, 12:26 PM
 
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I am sorry for your loss also. FWIW, children have long been weaned during pregancy in traditional societies, for thousands, if not millions of years.  Birth spacings are typically 4 years apart (although 3-5 yrs is common), mother regains fertility for a short time, gets pregnant, the nursing child weans a few months into pregnancy. The pattern goes on for about twenty years, a woman has 4-5 children. The last child likely nurses the longest. I digress, but my point was that nursing into pregancy is common for humans and how the species evolved. The primary difference though is that child and mother slept together, so mother was not sleep deprived. Western sleeping arrangments, with mother and child separated make it very hard on the nursing relationship, and exhausting!

My thoughts are with you. I would look further into your OB's reccomendation though per weaning. Hugs to you, it seems you are going through a very rough time.

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#7 of 12 Old 12-26-2012, 08:06 PM
 
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I'm sorry for your loss. I agree that weaning is not going to be a magic cure for miscarriages. If a fetus has major chromosomal abnormalities then it won't be viable anyways and I may get flamed for this but personally I'd prefer an early miscarriage over a stillbirth. What I have heard regarding nursing is that it may increase the risk of preterm labour in women with a history of that issue but we are talking 20++ weeks. I'm currently almost 10 weeks along and still nursing 21 month old DD. My take on it is that I'll meet the needs of my existing child as long as I can. If the baby is viable then a little nursing a couple of times a day is something I'm willing to risk. FWIW when my Dr asked about my plans regarding nursing, I said I plan to continue throughout pregnancy and tandem nurse after. His only opinion on the subject was that I may find it hard to do with a newborn and toddler. I'm not saying don't wean but early miscarriages are fairly common and usually are due to an issue with the embryo/fetus. I know low progesterone levels can lead to unnecessary miscarriages so that could be worth checking. I'm saying I wouldn't wean in this circumstance. Follow your instincts and go with what YOU feel is best. Good luck and hugs!
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#8 of 12 Old 12-26-2012, 08:55 PM
 
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Hugs to you and all you are going through. I understand, as I also had an early miscarriage last spring and am nursing my almost 2 year old. I am currently pregnant again, 17 weeks, and still nursing my toddler throughout the night and sometimes for one nap. All is well with this pregnancy. I made some attempt at night weaning but there are too many changes in our lives right now (traveling for holidays, moving within the next month or so) and it's just too upsetting for him (and me!) right now. I do not hope to completely wean him anyway - I have several friends IRL who have nursed through pregnancies and tandem nursed. This is not right for everyone and I hope you can find what works for you and your nursling. GL!


Kendra (30),  mum to ds fly-by-nursing1.gif(2/14/11), and one angel1.gif. Pregnant with my rainbow1284.gif due 6/10/13, it's a GIRL!!!
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#9 of 12 Old 12-28-2012, 05:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I thank you all for your advice and support. I'm having success with the after nap weaning so far (2 days!) and I've been able to distract her. I know the night weaning will take a lot longer, if I even do it at all! I just feel bad for my husband ending up on the couch every night anywhere from midnight on. I feel more comfortable after reading your replies that I can nurse throughout my next pregnancy but I won't be able to handle nursing both- especially at night!!!
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#10 of 12 Old 12-30-2012, 12:27 PM
 
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I'm glad that you are making progress with the weaning! I just wanted to chime in and say that it might help to try not to over analyze things.  If nursing at night is working for you now, then you can find ways to slowly make changes to night wean (i.e. work on one feeding at a time). 

 

FWIW, my DS was an all day and all night nurser, even at 23 months.  I got pregnant and he sensed almost immediately that something was different.  After an initial clingy phase, he has cut out most of his day nursing sessions and sleeps until almost 5am every night with no effort to change things on my part.  He still nurses to sleep and likes to nurse upon waking in the morning, but he has made some pretty major changes on his own...all that to say that if your DD is close to making the transition on her own (even if it doesn't seem that way now) getting pregnant may actually help her make the transition, and will make it easier on both of you.  I was planning on tandem nursing (although terrified of it too), but now I'm not sure if he will be nursing at all when the baby comes. 

 

Hugs! I know that you are making a tough choice - just do what feels right!

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#11 of 12 Old 12-30-2012, 07:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you!! Hoping to get pregnant again soon- that may help. And we just got a king size bed- that may help too :-)
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#12 of 12 Old 12-31-2012, 08:48 AM
 
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To anyone thinking of nursing while pregnant (or already doing so) or considering tandem nursing, try to find "Adventures in Tandem Nursing". It's a LLL publication and is a great help in thinking through this decision. It's not pushy about tandem nursing but is very much a common sense, find an approach that works for you type of approach. I'm still in the early chapters but it addresses a lot of concerns, including pain and nursing aversion and is packed with stories of real families sharing what worked for them. There's a whole section on night nursing that covers everything from night weaning to "rotisserie nursing". I find it a fabulous resource and think every nursing mom hoping to get (or already) pregnant should read it for lots of different ideas on how to proceed. It's not an easy find but LLL or possibly a midwife practice should have it available to loan.
PS: I'm not affiliated with this book in any way, just find it very useful joy.gif
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