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soon to be work dilemma

666 Views 10 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Flor
I will be going back to work (not happy about it) in another 3 months. My 8 month old has always been a bit of a funny nurser. He now nurses 2 or 3 times through the night then 1 time upon waking, then nurses to sleep for morning nap, nurses to sleep for afternoon nap, usually has an evening nurse and then bedtime to sleep nurse. I am worried about all of our nursing to sleep times...what will he do when he leaves me????? I am so unnerved about stressing him out. Should I be trying to get him to go to sleep more on his own? Also, I don't want to wean him at a year but how do I go about making the transition from nursing him during the day to only nursing at night?
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Who will be taking care of him? Perhaps you could start pumping a bottle for dad to feed him when he wakes up/goes to sleep/etc. I would start replacing one feeding a day with expressed breast milk (slowly, as you have a little time) until he's not nursing during the day as much. When I had to go back to work, my DS just knew he couldn't have nursie when he wasn't with me, and didn't even ask. I still nursed on the weekends (all day) and in the evenings with no problems.
I don't have anyone for childcare yet. He has never taken a bottle but I guess we now have to be more persistant with it. How old was your baby when you went back to work? How did you make that transition from always being with you to not?
If he won't take a bottle you can also try a sippy cup. Going back to work was very stressful for me too. About a month and 1/2 before I went back I tried about 5 different bottle systems till I found one he "liked". It was the evenflow system. However another gal I work with transitioned her baby to aventi sippy cups. Her son was about 7 months when she went back, mine was only 3 1/2. Neither of us had any interruption in our at home nursing schedule. Both babies transitioned back and forth fairly easily even when we went on vacations, nursed full time for a week and then had to go back to bottles/sippy cup.

edited to add:

The transition back to work was VERY hard for me but my son appeared to take in stride. I think it helped that we co-slept and had a strong nursing relationship. I also made it a priority to re-connect with him when I got home. No mail, no phone, no getting dinner ready, just focus on him for at least 45 minutes to an hour. Things I still do today. I also paid my nanny for a 1/2 hour after I got home so she would stay and we could talk about his day while he nursed with out any rushing.
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my dd never took a bottle either. I would personally work on a sippy now vs a bottle. try the avent without the valve. or try a nuby. it has a soft silicone spout and no valve - but is no spill. they bite it to get the milk. that is the only one that j would take

Good luck! oh, and she will nurse to sleep for me but is rocked to sleep by others just fine
i nurse her since the daycare in on site though.
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thanks for your tips hollybear. You seem to have the same sort of ideals that I have. We are contemplating a nanny as well. Just have to work out the difference in costs. Where abouts are you?
Carrie, that must be wonderful to have daycare where you work!
I am south of Boston. We hired our nanny at $10 and now she makes $13. She gets 2 weeks paid vacation (weeks of our choosing) 5-paid sick/personal days, paid major holidays (the same ones I get) and one week pay "holiday" bonus. The cost was (is) not much more than daycare centers in this area. Its the other expenses I didn't take into consideration meaning that my oil and water bills were so much higher since there was someone in the house all day plus added groceries etc. DUH!! I hadn't budgeted for those so take that in to consideration.

To me the most important factor was allowing my son to be on his own his own schedule not someone else's. If he needed to sleep till nine am he could. If he was hungry he would be fed right away not have to wait for someone with free arms. If he was crying someone could hold him and not have to have the attention divided.

Plus I am a natural stress ball. Knowing that I didn't have to rush around every am trying to get out the door on time and then rushing around at night getting everything organized for the next day was a huge bonus. Also being able to still got work when my son was 'sick' (temp at hundred which most daycares don't allow but otherwise fine, obviously not really ill!!) and having someone to help out when I am sick enough to stay home is a real bonus. I get paid sick time but husband doesn't so if we both had to stay home it would be a loss of income. Plus she is responsible for my son's laundry, dishes, keeping his toy area neat and clean, changing area stocked etc. Another time saver and stress reliever!

Here is a link to the International Nanny Association salary survey. Its kind of vague but it gives you an idea. At $13.00 an hour I am smack dab in the middle of the Boston range.

Oh and by the way I used an agency, which added another expense, but they do all the background checks for you (criminal, driving, etc). We have had our nanny for almost 3 years now but the agency continues to be helpful. My nanny has been out for the past 2 weeks for medical reasons and the agency had 3 people for me to interview for short-term coverage the next day.
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We had a TERRIBLE time when I went back to work (3 days a week). My son always nursed to sleep (naps, middle of the night and bed-time). Daycare complained and complained about the napping situation and I almost quit working altogether it upset me so much.

Here's what worked for us - I started nursing him earlier than bedtime (about 1/2 hour earlier than usual) and my husband puts him to bed now. He rocks him or walks him around and sings to him until he falls asleep. This helped him learn to go to sleep without nursing every time.

I still nurse him in the middle of the night or for naps if I'm home that day. My husband seems to enjoy the bed-time ritual and it has really helped his naps at daycare. This suggestion is from The No Cry Sleep Suggestion book by Elizabeth Pantley. It has a number of other good suggestions that might help.

Also, I agree - at this age, try the sippy cup instead of a bottle.
If nanny care is available and good, it is MUCH preferable to a group care situation for someone under 2 yo. They need one-on-one at 8 months, and group care will be focused on getting him on the 'team' schedule rather than meeting his developmental needs. Sorry to be uncharitable to group care for infants, I know some don't have an alternative, but the importance of one-on-one interaction at this age can't be overstated.

I have known many dc workers who worked w/infants and even the best, most loving ones simply have too many kids in their charge to give any one child an adequate amount of one-on-one time.

I agree with the others re the cup, and naptimes are often not a problem with the care provider. Kids know they can't get milkies from them, and they adjust. However, you may see an increase in nighttime nursing to compensate for the separation during the day.
I went back to work when ds was 6 month old. I have family members who watch him 1 or 2 days a week each. I was so worried, but I think he adjusted better than I did. The first day he cried, but that was it. He actually naps better for them then he does for me. I got a travel swing that he falls asleep in.. I tried all different kinds of bottles and he used them while I was home but when I went back to work he refused all of them. He mostly eats solids while I'm at work (I started him at 5 months just in case and was glad I did) and a sippy cup of water. I nurse at lunch break and more often when at home. Have you check out the working moms forum here?
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