Thanks very much for starting this thread. I am another mom who has personally chosen not to CLW, and I feel OK about that. I think it's great that all of the posts in this thread have been respectful - of the children, of the parents' boundaries, and of other people's choices.
I have worked full-time (first in an external office, then in a home office) from when each of my daughters turned 3 mos. old and pumped for a long time for each, which I find quite tiring. I have a computer-based job that requires a lot of concentration and attention to detail that I can't do effectively in a permanently sleep-deprived state. And I need to do it well - I am the sole freelance breadwinner, while my DH is a SAHD. I also just generally don't deal with sleep deprivation well. So those are my personal reasons for wanting to wean DD2, esp. at night.
Weaning DD1 was gradual, gentle and (I believe) mutual. She just dropped feedings until one day we didn't nurse anymore. She was just under 2. Even at that young age she would occasionally make "nursing jokes" - pretend to nurse and then stop just short and laugh. I feel very comfortable with how our nursing relationship went. I didn't even wean consciously; it just sort of happened.
My DD2 is now a little over 20 mos. old and I'm sort of half-heartedly weaning. What I mean is that I feel ready to wean, but I don't really have a "system" in place yet. I'm a bit at a loss, because with DD1 it was so easy. DD2 has always been an active nurser - the kind that pinches/twiddles, hits, twists around, etc. I call her the "baby goat" because she loves to nurse standing up.
I have basically started to try to distract her from nursing when I can with milk or a snack, have my DH make sure to feed her lots of snacks, and just this week started to try to pat her on the back at night instead of nursing, but if she is really upset, then I nurse. I am generally successful at putting her to bed w/out nursing now - her sister has bad teeth, and I am trying to prevent that any way I can with DD2. At night, we are at anywhere from 1-3x - we are also "weaning" from the family bed so that she can share a room with her sister, so it depends on where she is at night. She also nurses once (welcome-home nursing) when they get home from activities. Sometimes I nurse her a few times more during the day if she asks for "na na". So about 2-5 times per day total, and if she's sick I nurse on demand.
I'd appreciate any other tips you have. I have read Dr. Sears, but if someone could post links or something to the Dr. Jay Gordon method, that would be great.