Each time she wakes she nurses to sleep. I don't mind her waking to nurse maybe one, two or even three times, but this is just crazy! Especially in the morning when she really doesn't fall back asleep enough for me to get rest. Any advice? My husband and I don't even have a chance at a date night anywhere in the near future, or so it seems
- -Yep... thats me
Sounds a lot like my ds when he was 18 mo. He finally started sleeping through the night not long after his 2nd birthday. We continued to co-sleep through it all. I think it was partly him growing out of it, and partly some sleep habit changes for me. I used some of the ideas from No Cry Sleep Solution. I had tried them when he was younger, and it didn't seem to help then, but I had trouble being consistent. The two things that helped us most were putting him to sleep in the bedroom where we slept (previously I had been bouncing him on an exercise ball in front of the computer) and unlatching him as soon as he started to drift off. If he woke up when I unlatched him, I'd let him nurse more, but again, as soon as he was drifting off (I watched for 3 breaths with no suckling motion) I unlatched him. It would take a half dozen times before he would give up wanting to latch on again, especially at first, but it gently broke the sucking to sleep habit and he started sleeping longer and longer stretches. He continued to nurse to sleep at bedtime until he weaned a few months before 3, but eventually he was okay with just snuggling to go back to sleep if he woke in the night.
Mommy to DS1 July '09 and DS2 Oct '12
Sounds EXACTLY like my son. At 20 months I decided I could no longer take it and we decided to do night weaning based on Jay Gordon's method. We chose the hours from 8 pm to 4 am as the hours for no nursing. It worked really well and he is down to wanting to nurse just around 4 or 5 which at first felt so luxurious (we are now trying to cut this last nursing out, for the same reasons you name, the restlessness and me never really getting back to sleep afterwards. Right now it feels impossible. Crying into my coffee this morning...).
Here is what we found for our son: it was actually pretty easy to cut out any nursing before 2:30ish. No long crying sessions to get to that point, just needing to sshhh him or tell a short story. Cutting out the 2 or 3 am nursing was really hard, there were several nights of us all being up for 2 or more hours. But then he did it. And now it's dealing with that early morning nursing, the wanting to be constantly latched on, etc.
Not sure if that helps, but you are not alone! You could try a little night weaning and see how much is just habit that is relatively easy to change?
thank SOOOOOO much!
ok, i think Dr J Gordons method of picking (is it 7 or 8) hour stretch is good. Can someone direct me to his method, which i know is somewhere online. glad to hear i'm not alone. sometimes i feel like i made the wrong decision somewhere down the line of allowing her to cosleep and nurse on demand, but i know thats just my sleepiness talking. YAWN!
- -Yep... thats me
Here's the link: http://drjaygordon.com/attachment/sleeppattern.html
I need to get on this with my son. Some nights he throws me a bone and sleeps through. Other nights, he's awake 3 times to nurse back to sleep and I feel like I've been run over by a truck in the morning!!! He starts out in his room in a crib, and he quit nursing to sleep a while back... it was great when he would do that, but now he doesn't fall asleep. He nurses and I let him turn out the light, then I put him in his bed and sit in there with him until he falls asleep. Lately it has been taking him a long time. But I think that definitely helps him be able to go back to sleep without fully waking at night. On his first wake-up, I bring him in bed with us. On the nights where he "sleeps through" he is usually waking anywhere from 4:30 to 5:15 am, so I know what you mean about them being restless at that hour and nobody fully goes back to sleep.... If he's had a full night, then by 5 am or so he's nearly ready to be up. Or so he thinks. I guess I figure a couple more hours of restlessness is better than being up at 5 am and having to get out of bed. Sigh. Someday we will sleep again. I hope.