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I have read Dr. Jay Gordon's advice for nighttime weaning and the FB and I like the gentle approach(http://www.drjaygordon.com/ap/sleep.htm). But I have mixed feelings about doing it.

On one hand I am so tired some days. These days are particularly hard because DD is getting her incisors so she is waking every 1-1/2 hours and wants to nurse marathon style, so all said I am only getting about 45 minutes of sleep at a time! So I know I would not start the night weaning until she is past this. Nursing obviously comforts the discomfort. I did give her some Motrin last night and it didn't help.
poor baby.

On the other hand, I sort of feel sad about it. This is what makes no sense to me! How can I feel sad about night weaning when I want to sleep for 7-8 hours?

So my question is, does the feeling of sadness go away - is it normal to feel sad about the impending change (yes, I know it is), or is that my instinct telling me it's not the right time to make a change? BTW, DD is 17 months.

TIA for thoughts from BTDT mommies.
 

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I nightweaned my 22 month old daughter recently. I am 22 weeks pregnant and my milk has been going away. She was getting really frustrated at night when she was trying to nurse and there was not much there. So we decided to nightwean, we had 3 nights of me getting up and walking around and patting/rocking her back to sleep while telling her that the "nummies" went night night. Then on the fourth night she woke up asked for nummies I told her they were sleeping, she rolled over and went back to sleep. It has been about a month now and she very rarely even asks anymore. Yes it was a bit sad, but as I am pregnant and so very tired it is also nice to get some more sleep. You get so used to waking up every couple hours to nurse that I find my self still waking up and making sure she is OK. Fia still nurses about 4 times a day now, and as we come closer to having the new baby I think that it is a good amount. I miss having her attached to my breast constantly, but I will have a new little one soon that will nned that.
 

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luckylady,
I could have written your post! After hard nights (nursing every 90 min) I feel sooooo ready to nightwean. But my dd is only 12 months so I'm feeling guilty about it being too early. I'm just not sure. Then I have a few OK nights, and my resolve weakens. And yes, I too feel like although I am so frustrated at night, I would miss it at the same time! I like Gordon's method too because it encourages maintaining the family bed.... it would be even harder if I had to both night-wean and move her out of the bed. Yuck. So we'll see. But know you are definately not alone!
 

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We night weaned DS when he was about 20 months. The first couple of nights were very difficult. We talked about it a lot beforehand. That was key. I told DS that he could have as much (we call it boo boo) when the sun is out but not when the moon is out. SO he would nurse to go to sleep. My rule was if he woke up before 4:00 am he couldn't have any. If it was after 4:00 am I would say I think I see the sun coming out and nurse him (just so I was consistant). When we first started doing it, he nursed a lot during the day. Then it evened out and he actually started to eat more food.

I also told him that if he sleeps through the night he could get a big boy bed. We made a very big deal about it for a few months before he got one. We went to stores looking for them, we shoppe donline. Whenever I read a book with a little boy or girl in their own bed I would point it out. Now DS is sleeping through the night in his own bed.

Good Luck,

Lori
 

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For me the feeling of sadness went away and instead I feel overjoyed every night! But I don't know that it would've gone so well if we had done it when I first begain thinking of it. But you will know when it is time and slowly and carefully thinking of it will help guide you in finding sucess in nightweaning.

For our nightweaning story, see this thread

How dalai mama got her sanity back
 

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Hi! I am so glad to find this information! My ds is 29 months old. I just found out I am pregnant (due May23), so now I am faced with many challenges before the new one arrives. I really need for ds to night wean and sleep through the night! As of now he wakes up between 3 and 8 times a night (depending on how the day went, if he is sick, etc). I cannot stand the thought of waking up and dealing with 2 during the night! I will go insane!! I read the article by Dr. Gordon, I love it! I want to try it! But right now ds is sick with a cold. So I am guessing I should wait till he is better before starting.
I have a question though....right now he is sleeping with me in the livingroom on a kingsize airmattress, dh is in the bedroom nearby on our queen bed. I have a twin airmattress for the floor of the bedroom for ds to graduate to, so i can return to dh's bed. Should I try to do this night weaning in the bed ds and I are now, or try to do it on his new bed in our bedroom? I am wondering if the transition from one bed to another and the night weaning best be done all at the same time, or would that be too tramatic?
Thank you for you insights! Jen
 

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My dd is 16 mos. old, sleeps with me in Calif. king while dh sleeps in baby's room in queen-sized bed. I am ready to sleep with my man again and not be waking up 4-10 times a night to nurse!! This is my plan, but I want to run it by night-weaning veterans first:

Start sleeping with baby Maya in her own bed, so she gets used to being in that room/bed (still just with me).

A week or so later, Have papa start putting her to sleep (which will be a feat, as she always nurses to sleep), so that she starts associating him with sleep, and isn't shocked down the road when he starts putting her back to sleep in the middle of the nite.

After that routine is established, I'm hoping after a week, after papa puts her down, he and I will go to sleep in "our" room, and when she wakes up in the middle of the nite, he will go in and comfort her, but I will not go in and will not nurse her.

My question: is it too drastic to switch beds, switch from me to papa putting her down, and switch from sleeping and nursing w/ mama all nite, to not sleeping with mama and not nursing at all?

I guess I feel like I'd rather get it all done with together in the space of a few weeks instead of dealing with 3 separate traumas over the space of months.

I have such mixed feelings about night weaning, too. Tho I so much want to sleep all nite, I feel sad and guilty about imagining not sleeping with her, and also realizing that every time we cut something out, I will never again have that with her. In other words, the sweet/special part of co-sleeping will be over. Tho I guess once she's bigger and doesn't nurse at all maybe she could sleep with us sometimes.

Anyway, I would love some feedback about the order of doing things: in my case, accustoming her to a different bed, then to a different parent putting her down at nite, and then to mama being gone and no "chi-chi".
She understands a lot but doesnt talk and I don't think really gets the subtleties of language in the middle of the night when she's crying so hard she looks like she's going to explode...
 

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Well, 6 months ago I was asking all these same questions, so I will try to put my 2 cents worth back in for you now. I don't have answers for any of you, but it helped me to read others' experiences, and I'll try to make mine relevant.

I wanted to sleep through the night really bad, REALLY BAD, starting when DS was about 17 months. I thought about nightweaning (same Gordon stuff) forever--DS was always teething, or getting sick, or I had PMS, or something, for months. It felt ridiculous, but I was trying to find a time with a chance of succeeding.

We finally did it at 21 months. Night weaning itself was not that hard--minor crying, less than a minute. And then I found that I couldn't stand the rest of the program--refusing to do whatever else was necessary to comfort DS when he woke up. I couldn't refuse to talk to him or cuddle up with him if he was crying. So I stopped halfway on Gordon's plan. DS kept waking up and saying NE-NE, and I would say "ne-ne is sleeping," and he would go back out with some patting, or me finding his pacifier, or whatever. My limit is that I won't get out of bed with him unless he's obviously in pain or otherwise totally freaked. I basically do as little as possible, gradually doing more if necessary, in the comforting arena

So, still waking up every two hours or more, and not having nursing for the instant tranquilizer, I thought, this is pathetic. But it turned out that just night weaning alone helped my fatigue. I felt more rested after waking up all night without nursing than with nursing. And I really appreciated the physical space, too--esp when my breasts are tender with ovulation--it's nice to just have a little more distance. It's hard sometimes when he wakes up a lot because our sleep schedules aren't quite as synchronized anymore; on the other hand, if he does sleep for five hours, I don't go on waking up for every non-existent feeding like I used to.

DS has since moved onto his own bed, a futon a few inches lower than our bed--I can reach him when he wakes up. That was easy--it would have been a pain, though, if he were still nursing and I had to climb down there or pick him up. (Are you getting htat I am really lazy at night?) Before I moved him out of the bed, I had to wear a nightgown--one I couldn't undo in my sleep--or I always ended up nursing by mistake; I still keep one in the bed, in case I need to bring him up with us when he's really restless.

We thought about having DH do some of the nighttime stuff, but I always ended up feeling like it would be so horrendous--DS is a total mama's boy at night--and I would be awake too, listening to the screaming--that we never quite did it. It seems smart, but I was scared to try.

At 26 months, DS now sleeps 7 hours at a stretch now and then, and does 4 pretty often, and some nights are still a string of short naps. Molars are apparently really hard to get. I don't think night weaning--the way I did it--has gotten him to sleep more, I think he's just older.

And the sadness--yes, it's there. I really enjoy napping together now, cuddled up on the big bed, because I get my personal space at night and because I miss the all-night cuddling. And every morning about 5, DS can climb up into our bed and nurse to his heart's content until we all finally wake up at 7:30.

I talkde to DS about it a lot before hand too, though he generally didn't want to hear it. I told him a story about Baby Kitty and the Sleepy Milk. I think it helped him get the concept. And in the night, I would tell him not just "no," but "yes"--"You can have ne-ne when the sun comes up." That seemed to help him stay happy.

So, there you are. I don't know what is right for you. But I will say, delaying until you feel you're ready, and making up your own rules, is OK. (Don't tell the grandparents what you're doing until you're done, so you don't have to keep saying you've put it off again.) Eventually, whether you deliberately nightwean or not, you will get to sleep through the night and so will your breasts. I hope it goes well for all of you.
 

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Wow. Luckylady, I have decided to get more serious about nightweaning today and I was sooo sad all day. I felt like my heart was about to break. maybe part of that is because dd, Lillian is almost 12mo, not very old, and when I refuse to nurse her she is hysterical. It is just unbearable, it's like CIO but she is in my arms, which is better for her, I guess, but so hard on me.

Denise K, what a wonderful, helpful post! Great wise advice!

Jessica
 

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I found Dr. Gordon's method when ds was 14 mo. and I was 11 weeks pg. I new I had to do someting and I amso glad that I did. It was a hard few nights but it worked! Honestly, ds still wakes at night, but he went from waking every 1-3 hours to about 1or 2 times a night. So, that said, night weaning was a blessing.
 

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Dancingmama, I understand your hesintance. If you do start nightweaning, you must do it at a time that is good for the family. It is a difficult few days, even longer for some. But I do know plenty of parents have found it to be a great answer to sleepless nights.
 

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Ok, I have started a few nights ago. So far, it is doing fine! I have put a bit of my own twist on it though... Instead of just doing the first three nights with some nursing, then cutting off, then going to the next stage, I am extending the three nights. I am trying to gradually shorten the nursing time before cutting off. First I let him nurse almost until he falls asleep, then cut off. Now I am waiting about half that time. And starting tonight I will let him nurse a couple minutes, then cut off. More gradual a process. Then when he does this willingly, I will go to stage 2, the not letting him have any, but comforting him as neccesary.
I should add, I am also day weaning as well. I only let him nurse when he wakes up in the morning, before and after nap, and before bed. The rest of the time I just distract him with a snack or a drink or play. (by the way, DS is 2 1/2). This is going great, he really doesn't put up much of a fuss. My ultimate goal is to have him completely weaned, sleeping in his own bed, and sleeping as close to all night as possible by the time the next one arrives at the end of May! I think we are well on the way.
So, we will see how it goes, I will keep yall updated as things progress! Good luck to all you who are trying too!..JH
 
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