I am blessed to still be nursing my 16 month old son. Unfortunately he only naps in bed, next to me, nursing pretty much the whole time. He has reflux and as an infant he nursed all the time (fortunately his reflux has been under control for well over a year). For him the breastmilk was soothing. So he napped on me. Soon this switched to side laying in bed. He wasn't sleepin through the night, often ended up back in bed with me around 4am. I was often exhausted so I didn't mind napping with him, plus I love nursing him and snuggling.
We tried several times over the last year to get him to nap in his crib. No luck. He just cries and cries. So I have kept napping with him. He has started to break off sometimes now. But if he wakes up, ie after a sleep cycle, he will root like crazy until he finds my breast. If he doesn't find it, he will wake up crying.
I am now at a point where napping with him everyday is not working for me. He is finally sleeping threw the night (thank goodness- it took some minor fussing for a few nights, but nothing too bad- he was just ready). So I don't need the nap. He's also switche over to one nap, 2-3 hours in length. It's difficult for me to be in bed this long (even with my iPhone as a constant companion). I am also starting to work from home part time and need the time off the bed. Finally we have several trips to the beach coming up this summer, and I would love to spend some alone time with DH.
So I don't know what to do. We have tried getting him in his crib. I've tried nursing him in his room (how he goes to bed), then transferring him to his crib, but as soon as he hits the mattress, eyes pop open and he sits up and starts crying. I can't bear to have him cry more than a couple of minutes. I try again and again. Same result. When he wouldn't nap in his crib, we said, ok no nap, but this led to a terribly cranky baby and recked his nighttime sleep (sleep begets sleep, right?) Over the weekend my DH tried to read him books and rock him, this didn't work either. I feel terrible as I feel like it's my fault. I understand that it must be so difficult and confusing or him, for 16 months napping had been comforting, next to be, with his human pacifier (he never took to a pacifier).
I'm at a loss. It must change, but I don't know how to get him to nap in his crib. I feel terrible for him and have nowhere to go for advise. Then I remembered this board. So here I am asking for any and all ideas. I really appreciate you reading this long post and providing any advise. Thanks!