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Thread: 18mo wants to be attached to breast ALL NIGHT LONG! So Tired

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    167

    Default 18mo wants to be attached to breast ALL NIGHT LONG! So Tired

    Hello ladies

    It's been a while since I posted here. Last time I was looking for ideas to wean, but after trying, and dealing with a very upset baby and husband, I decided it was not worth it, and I am still night nursing...

    However, I have lost that "enjoy nursing" feeling, and I am just nursing because it's what makes my LO fall sleep without crying.

    My DD is now 18 months and overall a happy, smart girl

    The past month or so though, I have been so exausted... today is the worst day of them all!!! I am struggling to stay awake at work, and that is not good, I have a lot to do!

    Anyway, DD is been waking probably 4 or 5 times a night, wanting "ni-ni" and pushing me so I would get up and nurse. She never got used to side nursing, so I actually have to sit down on my bed and hold her on my lap to nurse. so, I really can't fall asleep while she nurses.

    So... I hold her, she nurses... I don't think she drinks, so it's all for comfort. I feel when she starts falling back asleep, and I feel her letting go the boob, then realizing she let go, so she latches on again, and this goes on over and over for... I don't know how long since I try not to look at the clock. If I try to put her down and she's not completely asleep, she rolls and sits down and starts crying. So I have to get her again, she latches on, and then the let-go-latch-on-let go routine starts again, until she falls asleep and I can put her on the bed and then I can lay down and sleep... until she does it again 3 or 4 times more during the night.

    Anyway, she has been doing this for so long that it started getting me. Today I feel like I didn't sleep any last night. Not rested at all. It's like when we were adjusting to the newborn... or worse, cause at least I could nap during the day.

    Anyone else had a similar experience? Any idea of what could be going on? Milestones maybe? What happens around this age?? And... how to cope with the exhaustation/frustration?!?!

    Thanks... I am so glad nursing mommas have this forum to discuss our concerns! Thanks to everyone who has helped me to get this far!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,935

    Default Re: 18mo wants to be attached to breast ALL NIGHT LONG! So T

    Is she teething, either getting her 1 year molars a bit late or her 2 year molars a bit early?

    If it's not teething, then I think that with a kid this age you should feel free to set limits around night nursing. For example, nursing has to take place in bed. Mommy isn't getting up. And once mommy has nursed, the shop is closed. If she's restless, she needs to accept something other than nursing in order to get to sleep, like a back-rub or something.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    NY
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    580

    Default Re: 18mo wants to be attached to breast ALL NIGHT LONG! So T

    I'm thinking teeth, too!

    I for sure would also try again with side-lying. At this age, she might be able to better understand how to get into that position with some direction. Does she nurse before bedtime, too? That would probably be where I'd start experimenting with positioning. Tell her this is the position for "ni-ni" now, while she's awake, and work on that. The nightwaking would be so much more manageable if you could both stay laying down!
    Apologies for the short responses! I'm usually responding one-handed on my smartphone!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    167

    Default Re: 18mo wants to be attached to breast ALL NIGHT LONG! So T

    She's been an early teether, so maybe the 2yr molars. I need to check her mouth I guess

    Hmm... see, that's why I love this forum so much. I never thought about trying the new position for bedtime while she's not upset and awake (duh!), and try to make her understand then that it is the way of nursing from now on. I'll try that tonight and see.

    As far as setting limits... that's what I tried when I was trying to wean, I guess. Maybe I didn't do it right, this is all new to a first time mom, first time nursing a toddler (which I never thought I would do!). While I was trying to wean, I still nursed to sleep and then I tried to make her go back to sleep with back rub, humming when she woke up in the middle of the night, so I could cut some of the nursing at night and eventually wean, but she just cried and cried, and it was the real crying too, not the fake cry they do sometimes to get what they want so, this made everyone upset, me, her and daddy.

    I really just need some extra hours of sleep, I am so tired... On top of getting up so much during the night, she is also an early riser, so we are up no later than 7am, every day. Usually 6am...

    Sorry if I sound whiny and complaining so much, this is the only place where I know someone would understand...

    Thanks!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    167

    Default Re: 18mo wants to be attached to breast ALL NIGHT LONG! So T

    Just an update -
    We tried side-laying last night for bedtime. She fussed for a little while because she didn't know what to do, but I lead her and she got it (I think). Less fussing during the night, but still got up maybe 4 times las night.

    I checked her mouth and I didn't see or feel any teeth popping out. I am not sure if she's just used to waking up and nursing that many times...

    Also, it was kinda complicated to switch sides. First time we've done it so, it was a little odd. What I did was pretty much just moving her to one side or the other. I don't think she cared much about that.

    However, I could not sleep while she was nursing, even being laying down! Am I used to being awake while she nurses now? So, I'm still tired, but less frustrated.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    NY
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    580

    Default Re: 18mo wants to be attached to breast ALL NIGHT LONG! So T

    I'd give it a few days. You too probably need to get used to the new positioning. Also, I find that I've had to mentally sort of reframe nightwaking for MYSELF so that I don't get stuck in a cycle of stressing about it and staying awake. Silly things like putting a positive spin on being awake, thinking about my lovely snuggly baby. The more I worry about being awake, or think about how tired I might be the next day, the harder it is for me to fall back asleep!

    Switching sides is a bit of a hassle for me, too. I'm small breasted, and can't just dangle the other one over! I just roll her from one side of my body to the other. My daughter has never even woken all the way up when I do this, amazingly.
    Apologies for the short responses! I'm usually responding one-handed on my smartphone!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nashville, TN
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    524

    Default Re: 18mo wants to be attached to breast ALL NIGHT LONG! So T

    @leemami I just want you to know how well I can relate. This has been my life for 16.5 months. We do co sleep and co nap b/c my daughter can't sleep w/out a warm body. I do work full time. I got pretty excited a couple weeks back because we had 6 good nights sleep in a row for the first time in our daughters entire life. I knew it wasn't permanent, but then she came down with her first cold with fever and we went 180 degrees - every day and night since then has been like the return of the newborn. Nursing day and night, nursing all night long at night. The first night of sickness I got 3 hours sleep. The next day I did not have to work but I did not catch up and was so tired I broke down a couple times. I can't believe I started longing for my 4 to 6 familiar wake ups a night vs the all night latch and crying.

    My relaxation tricks to return to sleep stopped working except one. A meditation podcast called falling asleep. I stream it from my phone and have one earphone connected. I have things arranged so my daughter and the device and ear buds are separated. Everything is on the nightstand close to my head. Here is the link: http://www.themeditationpodcast.com/episodes.html?ep=6

    I have used this the past 2 nights with success. First to initially fall asleep and later to return to sleep after a wake up where I needed a mechanism.

    I try to celebrate all the closeness I get with my little girl and remind myself that as a working mom it's amazing to be able to give her the rest of my time, including overnight. And as moms tend to say, this too shall pass. Here's to moms supporting moms.
    1st time mom over 40 to Alex(andra) b: 7/14/12

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