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472 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  DevaMajka
It is time for me to nightwean my 20 month old. I've been thinking about it for awhile - I think he is ready, and I know that I'm ready. But I'm feeling conflicted about how to approach it. With my first son, we tried to nightwean at 18 months and he was devastated, sobbing, so we gave up after about an hour. We waited until he was 2yo, and it went fine. We went cold turkey with him - while nursing him to sleep told him that we wouldn't be nursing again until morning, and then continued to say "no more nursing, we'll nurse in the morning" when he woke up during the night, while holding and cuddling him. He was pissy for about 3 nights (but not the devastated sobbing) and then was fine, even though at nearly 5yo he still wakes up during the night.

This worked for us, so I'm not sure why I'm feeling hesitant about doing it with my second son. Maybe because he's a bit younger, and I'm afraid he won't understand as well? I read the No Cry Sleep Solution, and I like the method she discusses, but I'm having a hard time with the idea of going through this for so long. We all share a bedroom, and we are all ready to get some sleep.

So, any thoughts on nightweaning? How old was your child when you did it, and how did you do it?
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My ds is 20 mos. I'm actually "nightweaning" now. I don't know if its actually nightweaning, because I'm happy to nurse once or twice a night, so...
He's always woke up 5 or more times a night to nurse back to sleep. I knew that once he knew how to get himself back to sleep, he'd stop waking me up! I just wasn't really sure how to do it without any crying involved.
I've been telling him for months to "Try to go to sleep without nips." (our word for nursing) and telling him to go to sleep with his head on the pillow, with me rubbing his back, with us cuddling, etc. I did tell him that we could still cuddle, and I'd be right there even if he wasn't nursing. That seemed to help. But I KNEW that it wasn't the best way to say that stuff, I just didn't know a better way to say it.
I recently started telling him that "Mommy's sleeping. nips are sleeping. and Keagan go to sleep too" and that we'd nurse when it was daytime out (we go to bed REALLY late, so that only left 5 or 6 hours of sleeping in the dark). If he wanted to nurse, I'd tell him that nips wanted to sleep. I didn't refuse, but would tell him that hoping he'd accept it and go to sleep. If he asked again, we'd nurse. But he mostly accepted it! I actually only told him that for a few days, because that's all it took to get him to sleep all night, only waking up or twice, or not at all. And mostly he only wakes up in the morning, after I've had a good long stretch.
There was one night in there that he woke up 7 times, and I nursed him if he insisted, or got even remotely upset. But the next night was back to waking once.

I can't believe that did it! I'm totally amazed- it only took a few days, and involved no crying, and no refusing to nurse. Its been about 2 weeks, and he's been mostly waking up once or not at all, most nights.
I knew that once he understood what I wanted, and was able to get back to sleep without nursing, he would do it. It just took some time before we hit on the perfect solution.

The wierd thing is, that he's always been a nursing to sleep guy. NOW, I still nurse him mostly to sleep, but he can't get into a good sleep if he's nursing. I have to unlatch him, and he rolls over and he's OUT!
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