Putting baby down awake - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 03-12-2014, 05:54 PM - Thread Starter
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I happily nurse my 15mo DD but we are in the classic nurse-to-sleep and nurse-all-night breastfeeding/cosleeping dynamic that was fine for the first year but I'm ready to break. Partially this is because if I return to work I might be working some nights. So, first step I always see is putting baby to bed still awake, not nursing all the way to sleep (step one of Dr Gordon's method, in Pantley's No Cry book, etc). 


My question is -- has anyone successfully changed this habit with an older baby/toddler? I can't see how on earth she will go for it. I have tried but once she starts crying for me I give in. Do I just need to put up with a good deal of unhappiness from her? Is it better to make hubby attempt bed? Will that even work?!? She's old enough to know her routine, and her routine = nursies to sleep! Hard for me to imagine any other way, although for sure I won't be moving into her college dorm room. 


Thanks for any advice or encouragement:) 

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#2 of 5 Old 03-12-2014, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by EstherRose View Post

Do I just need to put up with a good deal of unhappiness from her?  This sounds like a nice way of saying CIO and CIO is not ok.




Is it better to make hubby attempt bed?  Yes, if hubby is attending to baby, then it's not CIO.  She may or may not complain loudly, but in-arms crying/fussing is different from being left alone.  This may be an excellent compromise to get your baby to go to sleep without nursing, though it may or may not work to get her to the point of being laid down awake.

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#3 of 5 Old 03-12-2014, 06:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by blessedwithboys View Post

agree completely - I am not at all interested in CIO. And putting her down before she is asleep = crying! Hence my dilemma. Hubby has done practically no nighttime duty since birth so it would be big shock to her...but I can see why distance from nursies might be better than being right next to nursies but not getting them! Thanks:)

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#4 of 5 Old 03-14-2014, 12:17 PM
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My very spirited one year old started being able to be put down drowsy at about 12 months.  She will now do it about 75% of the time - minus when she's teething or extra clingy.  Usually if she's been upset about something earlier in the day and cried a lot, she'll need to cuddle to sleep.  Sometimes I'll lay down next to her for a few mins.  (She's in a crib pushed against the side of our bed.)  But usually she's pretty good about it now.  (Hope I don't jinx it!)


ETA:  If she's crying, nothing will calm her down - not DH, not time, etc.  For a week or two she complained when I put her down, but when she saw I lay down next to her and pretended to be asleep, she'd lay down and stop fussing.  But if she was genuinely crying (either in the evening or in the middle of the night) she still needed nursing.  It's a evaluate-as-you-go kind of situation.

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#5 of 5 Old 03-14-2014, 01:36 PM
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I wish I had the answer for you. I have been told DS will go to sleep on his own when placed in his crib by DW or our nanny, but I haven't tried it because I've got the milkies. I know at some point we will need to do this. I feel like everything I read just says, "Put them down to sleep when drowsy but not asleep" and then it stops there. How do you do that? It sounds simple but there must be more to it. I have been told having your partner do it can work because they don't associate going to bed with nursing. It seems like you need to alter the routine a bit until baby gets used to it.

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