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Thread: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to work

  1. #1

    Default 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to work

    Hi dear mums,

    I have a question which is probably a common problem for many mums who breastfeed.

    In short: my son, 13 months, is used to always falling asleep at the breast, and he should be starting day care at 20 months.

    Even worse, he is used to sleeping with me in the same bed (co-sleeping) and to only fall asleep with me, both for daily naps and in the evening. Often I even sleep with him in some of the naps as well.

    At night he still wakes a couple of times to nurse, which according to my husband it's "not normal" because he should be sleeping through the night. Even though I don't see it as abnormal, I do wonder if he gets enough solids, because if he doesn't eat enough for dinner then he wakes up much more in the night. And also in the morning he is often not so hungry to have breakfast.

    Because of the nightly wakings I still have to go to sleep early to make sure I sleep enough, and the rest of my life is kind of postponed. I don't care to postpone my social life for a while, I know it's temporary. But for my job I have been working from home all this time, and it's time I start showing up, because I need to work with my colleagues. But since he currently always needs me to be there to go to sleep, I can't leave for a day.

    What is your experience on this? How do you gently help him to learn to fall sleep with other people, in his own bed?

    Thanks in advance for sharing your experience!
    Fla

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Louisville, Kentucky
    Posts
    12

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    Hi there! Your situation sounds a lot like mine. We've found that other people are able to figure out how to get my daughter to sleep without major incident. Her dad will wear her on his back and take a walk or do stuff around the house and she'll fall asleep. He can also sit with her on his lap and let her watch Blue's Clues a if she's tired she'll fall asleep.
    I had 2 surgeries over the summer. I was so nervous about how she'd do without me overnight, but they got through it just fine. Sometimes you just have to take the leap. I know how hard it is.
    My daughter is 17 months and still wakes to nurse during the night, as well. Some kiddos don't sleep through the night until 2 years or older so it is completely normal. She definitely wakes more when her teeth are bothering her. Dang molars!!
    The key to him learning how to fall asleep with other people may be giving him the chance to do it with you not around. As long as you're there he probably isn't going to sway from his routine. I know that's the only way my daughter started napping without me.

    I hope that helps!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    785

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    Since you have a long time until your child starts daycare, can you start off with just mornings a few days a week and see how it goes, and then build up to longer days that would include naps? We had to start my daughter in daycare abruptly at 20 months after she had a nanny -- she always needed to be rocked and held to go to sleep. It was rough -- she wouldn't nap for a long time and I thought she never would. But eventually she did, and still does, 2 years later (wow, 2 years already!). But if you can get your child used to the daycare setting, then saying, "You'll be staying longer and having naps there," might help. If he loves the kids and teachers, it will be easier.
    Mom to my sweet little "Pooper," born 10/12/11, and "Baby Brother," born 6/23/2014, and married to heavy metal husband. Working more than full-time, making healthy vegetarian meals for family, and trying to keep up with exercise routine.

  4. #4

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    Hi!

    I too am in the same boat with my 7.5month DD. Am not going back to work until at least January, but like you am worried about how it will work if she's not able to nurse to sleep or have me co-sleeping with her for naps. She will be with grandma, so I'm hoping that will help.

    I've just read the No-cry sleep solution and the suggestion that we're starting with is to try to get DD attached to a comforter, so I've selected a teddy and also one of my t-shirts which smells of me and making sure she naps (well, at least her lunchtime nap) and sleeps with them.

    We've been doing this for about 4 weeks so far and she doesn't really seem to have built an attachment to them yet, but i know it can take time...am also hoping it will help with separstion anxiety...

    I'm also kind of hoping\thinknih that she'll devlop different rules for different peopel..like she knows she nurses to sleep with mummy, but rocked\patted\whatever to sleep with grandma...here's hoping!

    Good luck!

  5. #5

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    Hi alex87! Thanks for sharing your experience with your LO. Happy for you that it went well with your surgeries! It must have been scary.

    I think you are right that I have to take the leap... Several months ago it was, I think, the only time when I was away for sleeptime. Daddy took care of it, and even though he looked a bit tired and relieved (we have another little one, almost 3 yo now), he managed well. A pity we didn't keep doing it more often, but I should try again... just going away for an evening.
    Last edited by @llli*locomundo; August 21st, 2015 at 01:29 AM.

  6. #6

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    Hi filmmommy! Thanks for the ideas !

    I imagine a similar situation as you describe, if he goes to day care the way he is now... It will be a drama and it might not even work, because it's a small day care and he will be screaming waking all the other children up and they will ask me to bring him home, haha.

    Currently apart from napping with me, he does so in the buggy sometimes, but that doesn't work in the day care

    Perhaps dad has to try harder until it works! We have time to practice.

    Thanks for sharing!

  7. #7

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*rachel2552 View Post
    Hi!

    I too am in the same boat with my 7.5month DD. Am not going back to work until at least January, but like you am worried about how it will work if she's not able to nurse to sleep or have me co-sleeping with her for naps. She will be with grandma, so I'm hoping that will help.

    I've just read the No-cry sleep solution and the suggestion that we're starting with is to try to get DD attached to a comforter, so I've selected a teddy and also one of my t-shirts which smells of me and making sure she naps (well, at least her lunchtime nap) and sleeps with them.

    We've been doing this for about 4 weeks so far and she doesn't really seem to have built an attachment to them yet, but i know it can take time...am also hoping it will help with separstion anxiety...

    I'm also kind of hoping\thinknih that she'll devlop different rules for different peopel..like she knows she nurses to sleep with mummy, but rocked\patted\whatever to sleep with grandma...here's hoping!

    Good luck!
    Hi! Well, you have even more time, so things can change a lot. And if your LO stays with grandma and grandma likes to nap it might work very well and they can enjoy each other. I heard similar situations with friends.

    I also read the No-cry sleep solution. I tried with the comforters when he was younger and he just ignored all of my attempts, haha. But now that he is older it seems he picked up a teddy which for some reason he likes. He doesn't sleep with it, but it's a start. So if it's like with us, your daughter might not be interested in a comforter until she is older.

    I also realize that always children just acquire the habits that we create in them... the problem is more that WE need to change our own habits. Oh well, I think it sounds silly or obvious, but say, in my case, if I am ALWAYS the one taking him to bed, then of course that's what he expects, right? If I ALWAYS BF to sleep, then that's what he expects, right? It's kind of obvious but my point is, I need to change the habits myself if I want him to change his.

    Anyway... I better get back to work

    Thanks, and good luck with your little girl! She'll be ok with her grandma

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    I would suggest a trial run and see how things go, possibly find a different provider. When my son was really young I had to try a different caregiver and found someone who had a child much like mine in temperament. She was willing and able to sleep with my kiddo and hers same time to keephim to sleep. He slept ok but it didnt work for other reasons. Grandma watches him and is able to get him down no problem. Staying asleep is a different story but with it being informal day care she can do whatever he needs to help him. I agree about trying other methods as others have mentioned with a family member but in a day care setting with othee kids and noise would be completely different. Definitely suggest a trial run and easing into day care. And working from home as long as possible

  9. #9

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    I thought I'd post an update on this, for other mums who might be having the same concerns.

    I'm amazed how well it's going. I started leaving for work twice a week, while dad stays with my son. He is doing very well, they somehow manage to do the daily nap perfectly, so I am more confident that it will work when he goes to day care.

    Sometimes you have to try things and you can be surprised (positively) .

  10. #10

    Default Re: 13 month old only falls asleep while bf, need to go to w

    That's great! Really encouraging to hear your progress!

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