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Some questions about NCSS book (Toddler version)

517 Views 5 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  MelAndSimon
Hi there. I'm finally commiting to trying out some suggestions from the NCSS for Toddlers. DS is 20 months and waking every 2 hours insisting to nurse.

Getting him to bed usually isn't a huge deal, it's the nightwaking I'm focusing on.

So I'd like to nightwean or at least DRASTICALLY reducing night nursing. Thing with reducing, I think inconsistency would be confusing, so a totaly nightweaning would probably be better.

DS is not the kind of babe you can put down awake and have him fall off to sleep. He's never done that ONCE in his life.

This leads me to question 1: When Pantley talks about putting the child down while groggy, does this mean "eyes open groggy", or "eyes closed but not totally unconsious"?

After his eyes are closed I can lay him down and he'll fall asleep, but no way if his eyes are even cracked.

My second issue is his sleep associations. Right now he associates nursing with falling asleep, so when he nightwakes, he has to nurse to fall asleep. What I'm doing now is nursing him in another room besides the bedroom then taking him to the bedroom to rock to sleep. When he closes his eyes I transfer him to bed.

So question 2: won't he just switch his association to rocking? I mean, won't he insist on being rocked when he nightwakes?? This isn't exactly easier!!

Am I missing something?
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Yeah, you'll be creating another sleep association. I would choose something easier to do, and easier to wean off of.

We did NCSS at about the same age. We got a toddler bed and set it up in our room next to our bed. DH started putting him to bed at bedtime, so no nursing. At first he walked/rocked/did whatever it took. But gradually he got to the point of putting ds in the toddler bed, covering him up, and patting/singing him to sleep while sitting on the floor beside him.

When he woke the first time during the night, I would nurse him a little bit, but then use the same patting technique. For subsequent wakings I just nursed him back to sleep. What happened was -- his initial period of sleep started to stretch to a longer period of sleep. And his other wakings began to be perceptably further apart. He began to understand that he could wake up and fall back to sleep with nursing.

DS has asthma though, so we never did get him sleeping through. One illness would undo a lot. But we did get him sleeping for longer stretches, and that was my only real goal, kwim? 5 hours is a miracle when you are in that situation.

I also did nightwean, but found that I didn't have the heart until he was old enough to really understand when I prepared him for it verbally. Maybe 2.5 yo. I wasn't comfortable with doing it until we could have a conversation about it.
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I've tried and tried laying in bed with him and it's never ever worked. I've let 3 hours go and it just makes him wake up and get overtired.

Any ideas?
What is his daytime schedule like?

I found that keeping my sons awake past 3-4 pm made it much easier to get them to sleep at bedtime. And that how easily they fell asleep at bedtime taught them a lot about their own ability to drift off again after waking in the night.

And -- having DH do bedtime helped a lot because the nursies were absent. So -- he could experiment a little more easily with different bedtime strategies.

I'm sorry I am not much help! I feel badly not to respond. My kids were never great sleepers and my little one still gets up at night. He's almost 6 yo!! So I feel silly giving advice. I just really feel for you. That -- and I found NCCSS to be helpful.
I appreciate your reply

He naps really early in the day. Usually 11:00-1:00.

Last night we nursed in the living room and rocked to bed. It took an hour (ugh), but he didn't wake for 5 1/2 hours!!!! He had a really big day outside, so I don't know if it was the extra exercise or the new bedtime routine.

He nursed every hour after that, but it's a start!!
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We have the NCSS for toddlers, but have not had success with our problem using it because we do everything in the book and ds still wakes sometimes every hour for milk.

So, this is what we are doing:

Be sure to read the entire article! Dr. Jay is very clear in the article about his feeling about night weaning.

You have to be ready to do it.

At 20 months, your child can understand what you are telling him. My ds is 18 months, and the biggest success factor for us so far is repeatedly telling him that there is no more milk after sleepy time until the sun comes up. Only water. We told him that about 10 times during our bed time routine. And he'd repeat "water" back to me! He was angry the first night, but he was fine the second and third (so far so good!). I just give him water and remind him that there is no more milk until the sun comes up.

Check out the other postings on this board about Dr. Jay's article.

Good luck.
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