Sleeping through nursing, or while nursing, or ... YKWIM. - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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A lot of threads with upset mamas not sleeping at night got me wondering. I mean, we first started doing the family bed for all sorts of other reasons when DS#1 came along, but as the years have gone by we've noticed the obvious (to us) benefit that we all sleep reasonably well. Meaning that if we're up at night, it's usually not because of the babies/children.

If little ones nurse, they nurse, and once they're latched on I fall back asleep.

During pregnancy, when nursing is uncomfortable sometimes, yeah, it takes me a little while to fall back to sleep ... but eventually I do.

I guess I figured that CLW'ers would have similar experiences to mine, being able to sleep through nursing. Because I've been told that most mothers cannot/do not fall asleep while nursing. Which surprised the heck out of me.


Anyone with anything to say on this?
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#2 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 02:30 PM
 
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I can sleep while they are nursing when they are young, say under 2. After that, I just can't. I don't know what changes, the latch, the positioning, what. But for some reason, after they turn two (there about!) I am awake while they nurse. I remember many times when they are little that I'd wake up to find someone latched on, or my breast hanging out and knew that someone had nursed....but as they get older, I just can't.

I wish I could. I wish I could rest as easily as I did when they were babies. I wish I didn't start feeling total exhaustion between 2 and 2.5 and feel the need to nightwean.
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#3 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 02:40 PM
 
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I'm in the same place as APMom98.

Young babies I just sleep through. The older they get, though, the more disruptive. At this point if DS nurses that means I'm up. All the way. I can read for an hour or so and then go back to sleep sometimes.

Before I was pg with DD if I was woken anytime after 3-4am I would be up for the day, though, so I assume it is an interaction type thing, not true for everyone. For many people, they would never know that it was an issue--- they wouldn't have a 2,3,4 year old still night waking and find out. For example, if my kids nightweaned in the 18-24 month range I would have said the same thing, "Can't you just fall back asleep," kwim.

 

 

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#4 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 05:03 PM
 
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i always wake up, every time, every 2-3 hours, for almost three years. sometimes i fall back asleep before she's finished, usually not. last night she slept for 5 hours straight (A RECORD!) and i woke up out of habit at the 2.5 hour mark. go figure. i'm not uncomfortable, i'm not irritated, just can't sleep with that sweet little nursling latched on. (at least i get to hear all her cute little sleepy nursing noises. )
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#5 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 05:14 PM
 
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For us, the issue is position. DD absolutely REFUSES to nursing lying down, so even though we have a family bed, I have to sit up to nurse her. Sometimes I fall asleep sitting up, though, but then I wake up with a nasty crick in my neck: .

, , , and
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#6 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 06:22 PM
 
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merpk, i had a lot of friends who would sleep through nursing. So you're not the only one. I used to envy them!

I was rarely able to fall asleep nursing when dd was a baby. When it happened it was so wonderful.

When dd got into the toddler years she would lose her latch and accidentally hurt me with her teeth as her mouth relaxed and she fell asleep. So I needed to stay awake to unlatch her at the right moment, not too soon and not too late.

But it was done lying down at least and it beat getting up out of a warm bed!!!

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#7 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 06:47 PM
 
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I've never had any problem sleeping while dd nurses... but I've never had any problem sleeping BUT she's not two yet, so maybe it will all come crashing down soon!

-Angela
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#8 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 07:40 PM
 
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i don't sleep well while nursing. i imagine i would get used to it, but my boy has always been more of a bussiness nurser, so it hasn't been an issue.

Mama to Jet 6/05, Marvel 8/06 and Cash and Fox 2/09
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#9 of 24 Old 03-30-2006, 10:46 PM
 
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I'm with APMom98 and Tiredx2, I can sleep through the little one nursing but the 3.75 yr old wakes me EVERY TIME (and she'd stay on ALL NIGHT if she could). DD doesn't even wake up herself, as far as I can tell, but she sits up, all rumply, eyes closed, and starts rummaging around, over the covers, under the covers, trying to latch on to anything a little bumpy there, terrible aim, can't find it, grunts, scratches herself, falls back down on the bed, snores once, then struck by some dream inspiration, sits up again and starts over, pointed in a different direction maybe, it sometimes goes on ALL NIGHT. And when she does find it and latch on, if she's thirsty, she sucks reeeallly hard, and it's like having my boob vacuumed or something, but ALL NIGHT LONG.

If I was sleeping through it, or through more of it, I wouldn't bat an eye at CLW.
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#10 of 24 Old 03-31-2006, 01:06 AM
 
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my ds has always been big and by now is rather large at age four years.

He has always been a very high needs child/nurser, and still nurses at night (just did a moment ago)... and I feel like I haven't slept in over four years.

Yes, I can sleep while nursing. but, him crawling all over me to latch on since he was able to crawl is what disturbs my sleep.

I am very tired....
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#11 of 24 Old 03-31-2006, 11:09 AM
 
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I can sleep while nursing. DD currently follows a pattern most nights where I put her to bed in her own bed in her room, then when she wakes up she comes into our room or DH goes and gets her and brings her to our room. Some nights I put DD to bed in her room, then go to bed and wake up in the morning to find she's joined me, and have to ask DH when she came in, because I'll have effectively slept through the whole thing (at least if I woke up, I wasn't awake enough to remember it afterward).

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#12 of 24 Old 03-31-2006, 11:39 PM
 
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I'm with the other moms here who hasn't slept as well since my nursling (now almost 23 months) got older...maybe around 15 months or so.

I was just thinking about that the other day and wondering why and I came to the conclusion that he doesn't 'sleep nurse' anymore. When he was a baby, he would stir and I could latch him on before he was fully awake and then while he nursed, he layed perfectly still while he suckled. Now, he wakes up so quickly and sometimes even sits up or cries, when he latches on and gets going he seems restless and most times ends up finishing his meal, unlatching and rolling over to go back to sleep. No wonder I don't sleep like I used to.

~lisa~mama to 3 boys (1/02, 5/04, 12/06)
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#13 of 24 Old 04-01-2006, 02:04 AM
 
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I can't sleep while nursing, but I am a very light sleeper.

Mom to Eoin (11/02), Eilis (09/04), Eamon (07/07), and Ellery (04/10)
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#14 of 24 Old 04-01-2006, 02:17 AM
 
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For about a year, I couldn't sleep while dd nursed at night. But, now, I'm back to being able to sleep. She'll be two in 11 days.
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#15 of 24 Old 04-01-2006, 02:17 AM
 
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I mostly sleep thru. She nurses in the morning only usually, and sometimes when I come to bed. She's a little wild with throwing herself across my body to get to the other boob, and that wakes me. I mostly doze thru her nursing now. She is 2.5.
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#16 of 24 Old 04-01-2006, 06:27 AM
 
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Okay so this is kinda off the topic but I just have to say THANKS everyone for sharing like you do on this forum. I am surrounded by people who think that weaning happens at six months sharp and they can't figure why there isn't a cot in my house. It is so sane-making for me to read these posts about you all nursing and co-sleeping with your toddlers. Mine is 71/2 mos now and I am already battling to sleep through his nursing, and getting really tired as a result. My friends all reckon that is proof that my way is wrong.
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#17 of 24 Old 04-03-2006, 04:03 PM
 
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I've never been able to sleep through night nursing. I envy those who can! I am also finding that as he gets older it takes me even longer to fall back asleep with him throwing himself on top of me and getting seriously PO'ed if it takes me a bit to get him settled and get out the boob! So even though he's waking less often I am still tired but it is slowly improving.

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#18 of 24 Old 04-03-2006, 07:51 PM
 
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When ds (14 months) wants to nurse during the night, he'll wake up and cough, cough, cough with his eyes closed and start rolling into me. So I have to wake up enough to get him latched on the right side. Sometimes I have to hop over him because if I don't alternate sides, I'll leak all over the place. I'll quickly fall back asleep once he's on, but then if he doesn't fall off within 20 minutes (which is at least half the time) I'll wake up for one of the following reasons:

a. My arm goes numb from lying on it
b. My nipple will get sore from him being on too long (he's been known to be on for an hour or longer at a time, not drinking, just sucking)
c. He'll slide off just enough so his teeth are clamped at the edge of my nipple (ouch!!)

I find it really hard to break his latch with my finger when I'm lying down, so I usually have to wake up enough to do the slowly-pull-away-or-roll-over trick. At this point, I'm still okay with the way things are. Sometimes I feel rested, sometimes I don't. I might feel different when he's older...

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#19 of 24 Old 04-03-2006, 08:25 PM
 
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I can sleep through nursing. In fact, I used to depend on those sleepy hormones to go to sleep at night. I guess that's why I never night-weaned ds although he eventually night-weaned himself.

I was a very well-rested new mother with him. "No, he's not sleeping through the night, but yes, I'm getting plenty of sleep".
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#20 of 24 Old 04-03-2006, 09:21 PM
 
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Pam, that's how it was with my first two kids. I got plenty of sleep. Then came number 3. He's rocked my world for the last 4 years and 6 months. And, it's a violent sort of rocking, too. LOL I haven't had a really good night's sleep since I was pregnant with him.
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#21 of 24 Old 04-04-2006, 12:06 AM
 
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with dd i could never sleep through-- i'm not a great sleeper to begin with. But with the new little guy- no problem! I must be more relaxed about it now.

Even when I do wake up, it sure beats trying to put a sleeping baby back into the crib without waking him up and starting all over again. dd didn't co-sleep til around 6 months so I am very amiliar with that little dance!
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#22 of 24 Old 04-04-2006, 01:39 AM
 
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What the others said

I can easily sleep through a baby nursing in the middle of the night. But once the baby is 1.5-2yo, it's much harder for me to sleep through the nursing session. If my 2.5yo wakes up early in the morning, I know that I can nurse HER back to sleep, but there's no way I'll get back to sleep before I need to get up.

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#23 of 24 Old 04-11-2006, 04:11 AM
 
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For me it depends what kind of mood I'm in, and what kind of mood the child is in. But almost always I go back to sleep. It's rare I lie awake. Reading the above makes me feel blessed.

mv
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#24 of 24 Old 04-11-2006, 04:34 AM
 
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Aw heck I'd barely register waking up. I think I usually fell asleep first and the little guy just popped off on his own. But, I was a human pacifier for about 4 years. If the mood was off for some reason, I'd just turn on the late show for a few minutes. But, never ever got out of bed or sat up. Nope.


And, now my kids are totally zippy and independent and sleep on their own bed next to ours. Must've worked.
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