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Thread: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
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    Default Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    Hi!

    I'm planning to go back to work when my LO is 4.5 months. I have been exclusively breastfeeding and feeding on demand. I plan to pump every 3-4 hours at work. I just read in other threads that moms can maintain supply by doing night feedings. However, my husband is pushing for sleep training which means our baby would sleep through the night. The book he read advises to wean night feedings.

    Has any moms here gone back to work and sleep trained? Does it affect supply? My LO currently goes to bed ~7pm, wakes up at 1:30 am for a feeding and sleeps again until ~6:30am. When awake, she feeds ~every 2 hours.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    It's not recommended to attempt any type of sleep training until at least 6 months. It's not appropriate at 4.5 months to limit access to milk at night. It's too soon.

    Way too lazy for formula

  3. #3
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    Jul 2011
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    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    Why is your husband pushing sleep training? Waking once a night is less than most babies, and you are the one getting out of bed to nurse. I also agree that 6 months is the absolute earliest I would consider, but even then I would only consider cutting back on night waking, not pushing to sleep through.

    I did wean one of three night feedings when DS was around 8-9 months old, so I could get a longer sleep stretch. That meant he would nurse with me 5-6 times in the evening, night and morning before heading back to to day care. Then on the weekends I would push for nursing every 2-3 hours during the day, whether he asked for it or not, to help keep my supply up. If your LO does end up sleeping through the night, use frequent evening nursing and weekend nursing. If that doesn't work, wake LO up at night.
    My little man was born 12/17/2010.

    Baby girl was born 4/30/2014.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
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    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    Your LO is already sleeping 12 hours with only 1 feeding. Here's the thing: the pump is usually not as effective as nursing at maintaining supply. So when mom goes back to work and is relying on the pump to maintain supply for half the day, it's important to do a lot of nursing in the other half of the day, and that's hard to do if there's no nursing for a very long stretch at night. For example, right now you are nursing every 2 hours when baby is awake, but it doesn't sound like you're planning to maintain that schedule with pumping. If anything I would probably try to nurse your baby MORE during those hours once you go back to work - for example nursing baby at 9 or 10 pm or whenever you go to bed.

    Personally I would throw the book your husband is reading out the window. With my first baby I read the "What to expect" book and it made me stressed and anxious. In retrospect I see why, because they advocate spacing out feedings, getting baby to sleep longer, etc - it's actually a very breastfeeding-unfriendly book. But, I didn't know that much about breastfeeding at the time. Fortunately my breastfeeding relationship survived the terrible advice. With my younger two I went with the flow, stopped worrying about what the book said, felt perfectly happy to nurse my babies as often as they wanted. My point is, there is a TON of bad advice in books out there, ESPECIALLY if you are trying to breastfeed baby, even if the book pays lip service to breastfeeding.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    with the PPs!

    What book is your husband reading? And why does he care about the night feedings? If you're nursing, it's not like he has to get up to feed the baby. Maybe if you can tell us what his specific concerns are, we can help you meet them with correct information.
    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!"

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    And if the book is baby wise throw it out the window.

    Way too lazy for formula

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*djs.mom View Post
    And if the book is baby wise throw it out the window.
    But only after setting it on fire.
    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!"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
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    Minnesota
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    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    Night nursing is the only thing keeping me going now that I am back at work. I cosleep and nurse baby pretty much all night. I love if. It gives me a chance to reconnect with my daughter after being away all day, and makes it so she doesn't need quite as much milk when I am gone, which takes the pressure off of me to pump so much. She used to sleep a 6 hour stretch and I would have to get up anyway to pump since I didn't make enough for her during the day. I realized how ridiculous that was and quit swaddling her so now she nurses more at night.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Virginia
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    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    Just to add on to PP... my second son drank as little milk as possible from a bottle while away from me and nursed evenings and nights to make up the difference. This was perfectly normal (sometimes called reverse cycling) and had I night weaned this would have been an issue for him in getting enough breastmilk.
    Last edited by @llli*5ofus; April 24th, 2014 at 11:30 AM. Reason: added a thought
    FT working momma to a 9/11/10 busy boy and 11/13/12 happy little man.
    Also wife to hubs since 8/23/08, bonus momma to H (girl) -99 and G (boy)-03

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
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    10

    Default Re: Going back to work PLUS Sleep training

    Thanks for the responses moms! It sounds like increased night nursing is the way to go if i want to maintain supply. Do I try to feed her while she's sleeping? Or wait to see if she asks for it on her own? I really appreciate all the advice and shared experience. (This mom stuff is so much harder than I ever imagined)

    Off topic: The book my husband read was The Sleepeasy Solution. He wants to sleep train because he doesn't want to co-sleep and end of having the kids stuck in bed for years (he's heard a lot of stories from coworkers). We also don't cosleep bc I'm a very light sleeper and she's a noisy/grunty sleeper. Currently, we're swaddling and using the pacifier to help her sleep. The pacifier is becoming the enemy bc she wakes up every time it falls out. We're glued to the baby monitor to watch the pacifier and we rush in every time it falls out.

    As a first time mom, I have no idea what the right thing to do is in terms of sleep. I do want her to develop good sleeping habits and be able to fall asleep on her own. Not sure which way to go on achieving that.

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