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Thread: Not sure about weaning

  1. #1
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    Default Not sure about weaning

    I'm sure this post has been written a million times, but I just feel like I need a place to "talk" about this. I am feeling really torn about weaning. I work full time, so DS is mostly day-weaned. He's about 17 months old now, and is healthy and happy. He has never slept though the night. He usually wakes up between 2 and 6 times each night, and I nurse him back to sleep. I also nurse him to fall asleep initially.

    He loves nursing. Loves it. He is definitely not ready to wean. Me, on the other hand... I don't know. Sometimes, I am feeling worn out (probably due to lack of sleep) and I wish that he could sooth himself to sleep in another way. Most of the time though, I do like it.. and I am not really ready for this chapter to end. My DH has been saying that we should try to wean soon; he feels that DS is getting too old and that we need to get him to fall asleep w/o nursing. I agree with him about the falling asleep part; it would be awesome if DS could sleep w/o me.

    The biggest problem is that I am too tired in the middle of the night to try to night wean. It's so much easier to just shove a boob in his mouth!

    I'm trying to figure out if night weaning will reduce the night wakings, or if that won't make any difference. Does anyone have experience with that?

    I have always been very attentive in the middle of the night, probably too much so, and now DS expects it and needs it. It's going to take a lot of effort to night wean... especially since he wakes up so much!

    I am so jealous of the people who have babies that sleep.
    ~ Megan

    Mommy to Alex (born 2/27/11) and Katie (born 3/31/14)

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    We night weaned with Glowworm at about a year using Dr. Jay Gordon's method and it did cut out night wakings (for the most part). Night weaning doesn't mean all the time weaning, even if you are working. Until school got out he would nurse in the morning, when I got home, and then once or twice (or more) before bedtime. He would also nurse more on weekends.
    I am Erin--happily married to the nerd of my dreams for 15 years
    High School Science Teacher
    Mother to: Thing 1 9/23/01, bf 15 mo, diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma 1/29/02, officially cancer free for ten years in August 2012
    Thing 2 6/6/05, bf 12 mo, obsessed with dynamite
    Glowworm 2/18/11, bf 15 months and counting

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    Lilah has been night-weaned for almost 2 years now and fully weaned for a bit less than that. She still wakes up once or twice a night about half the time and she wakes up a lot when she's sick.

    Have you thought about having DH take over bedtime?

    How do you feel about weaning? Is your DH just trying to fix the night problem for you?

    Trixie also wakes up about every 2 hours all night long, but I sleep with her so it's not impacting me that much. How many hours are you in bed every night?
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    We have talked about DH taking over bedtime, and he's totally on board with that. It's me that is the problem. It's hard for me to listen to DS crying (which is what he does when he doesn't get nursed to sleep), and I feel like I'm being a bad mom and a bad wife (ridiculous, I know). Also, in the middle of the night, DH is kind of useless because it takes a really long time for him to wake up enough to actually be helpful.

    I honestly don't know how I feel about weaning. I know that DS isn't ready. I am not sure if I am. DH wanted us to wean at a year, which clearly wasn't happening. DH is getting more and more anxious about it, but is being respectful and kind.

    I'm lucky because I really don't need a lot of sleep to function, but the night waking is just getting annoying. DS usually falls asleep around 7:30pm in my bed, and then I move him to a mattress in the hallway (lol, the walls provide support so he can't roll off) after he's in a deep sleep. I go to bed around 10pm. When DS wakes up in the middle of the night, I lay next to him on his mattress (our solution to my husband's dislike of cosleeping in our bed!) and then I'll go back to my bed eventually. We all wake up for the day around 6am-7am.
    ~ Megan

    Mommy to Alex (born 2/27/11) and Katie (born 3/31/14)

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    Well, your situation and schedule sounds very similar to mine, although my girls are on full size beds. I go to bed at 9 and get up at 5.

    The thing with bedtime... it has to be important enough to you that you don't rescue them. I couldn't handle the bedtime nursing anymore because of the pregnancy hormones. Lilah cried/screamed and DH just stuck it out. It wasn't fun for anyone, but I knew I couldn't do night-time parenting for two children. Trixie is 18 months old and we've started incorporating her into DH & Lilah's bedtime routine, but I don't see myself letting him take over the entire bedtime routine for a long time.
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    I honestly don't know how I feel about weaning. I know that DS isn't ready. I am not sure if I am. DH wanted us to wean at a year, which clearly wasn't happening. DH is getting more and more anxious about it, but is being respectful and kind.
    It sounds to me as if neither you nor your child want to wean yet, and since you are, as you say, mostly "day weaned" due to your work schedule, both of you are open to/need frequent night nursing, which makes perfect sense to me. Nightime nursings are a great time for moms and babys to reconnect & comfort each other after stressful days apart. It almost sounds like the real issue is that you cannot co-sleep due to your husband not wanting to, and thus cannot dream feed which would probably lead to more sleep overall for you. Is there another way to address whatever problems your husband has with co-sleeping and/or nursing into toddlerhood so that you and your child can continue to nurse when you are able to?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    Actually, I'm pretty happy with the sleeping arrangements. DS was getting too big to be in bed with us, so having space on his mattress for me (when I am needed) is working out perfectly. A couple of real-life friends told me that their toddlers started to STTN once they night-weaned; I was just looking for more advice/experience with that. Plus, I sometimes feel a bit exhausted from being the easiest way for him to fall asleep.
    ~ Megan

    Mommy to Alex (born 2/27/11) and Katie (born 3/31/14)

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    But if he night nweans and he's mostly day weaned, when are you going to nurse? Or are you trying to be completely done?

    Way too lazy for formula

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    Well in my personal exp. for what it is worth, night weaning at 17 months (which i did with my oldest due to fertility concerns) resulted in way less sleep. For everyone. As soon as I was pregnant we went right back to night nursing and we all slept much better. Obviously everyone has an opinion about this based on their own experience, but basically I think kids sttn when they are developmentally ready, (and this varies) no matter how they are fed. For some kids, this may also coincide with no longer needing nightime feedings, which would also vary from kid to kid.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Not sure about weaning

    Ugh, after tonight, I think I want to be completely done! It's so frustrating that on nights when I have a lot to get done, he needs me to be his personal pacifier all night! I know that weaning won't stop that though. It just sucks when I try to unlatch and he screeches for me, over and over again.

    I think that my situation would end up like yours, Meg. I think it will result in less sleep, which is why I am hesitant. I'm just getting frustrated!
    ~ Megan

    Mommy to Alex (born 2/27/11) and Katie (born 3/31/14)

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