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Thread: Night Weaning 27 mo old - awake and upset for long periods

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
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    Default Night Weaning 27 mo old - awake and upset for long periods

    Question for parents who have night weaned. We are about 2.5 weeks into night weaning with my 27-month old actively-nursing daughter and while she's sleeping a much longer first stretch at night (6pm - 1 or 2 am), she's waking between 1-2 am and is still very upset with the idea of no milk. Usually takes anywhere from 20 mins - 1.5 hours to get her back to sleep. She can be very upset and panicked at times, and requires rocking, stories, etc. to go back down when I can in fact get her back to sleep (past 4am I will nurse her). We're loosely following the Dr. Jay Gordon approach (though aren't tied to his timeline) but the idea of his "phase 3" (i.e. getting back to sleep without picking child up etc.) is very far off. Just curious if this is something that others who have night weaned have experienced at length as I try to gauge whether we should persevere or whether this isn't the right time perhaps… We are trying night weaning now to try and jump start fertility as I'm still without a period, but I still wonder, based not her reaction, if this isn't the right time. Thanks so much for your thoughts.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    10,754

    Default Re: Night Weaning 27 mo old - awake and upset for long perio

    If your child is sleeping from 6 PM to 1 or 2 am, that is 7 or 8 hours of a continuous sleep stretch with no nursing. To me, that would indicate a child has been successfully night weaned. It is also a long enough stretch for increasing fertility if my understanding is correct.

    I also night weaned my oldest so my period would come back. I was shooting for 6 hours a night of no nursing, and we got it. But my child did not SLEEP that long. It was basically torture. So we gave it up, went back to nursing on cue overnight. By then my period had returned. Whether the night weaning had anything to do with that is unknown of course.

    Basically in my opinion, your child's sleep pattern sounds normal, but your child needing to be comforted back to sleep when child wakes is also normal. If it were me, I would call that length of a sleep stretch a major win and simply nurse my child when they woke up so we could all go back to sleep faster.

    Maybe to make the long sleep stretch coincide with your own sleep, try moving your child's bedtime later?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
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    11

    Default Re: Night Weaning 27 mo old - awake and upset for long perio

    Thanks so much for your feedback - really appreciate the perspective and hearing other people's experience. I'm curious - long did you keep it up before you went back to nursing on demand and before your period came back? If I knew my cycle was on its way back I would go back to on demand in a heart-beat as you suggest!

  4. #4
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    Jun 2009
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    10,754

    Default Re: Night Weaning 27 mo old - awake and upset for long perio

    well we are going back over 10 years. So exact time frame is hazy. But I do remember exactly when my period came back because my son and I were tagging along on a business trip my husband was taking, it poured buckets of rain the whole time and we were living in a tiny hotel room and period came back with a vengeance and it was all pretty miserable. I think it was on this trip we gave up the night weaning. So let me think...

    The night weaning must not have been that long. 4-8 weeks or so I would guess. My son was 17 months old when my period came back. To put this into perspective, I never did any type of weaning, night or otherwise, after next two children and period returned at 24 months with second child and 22 months I think with third. So all in the same ballpark. This is why I say I have no idea if the night weaning did anything. My understanding is that the idea that night weaning will jumpstart fertility return is a theory. It has never been studied.

    When my period came back, it was regular and I was pregnant in a couple months. Unfortunately that first pregnancy miscarried, but we know for a fact it had nothing to do with breastfeeding because my hormones were normal (tested several times) and the egg implanted and eventually I needed a D & C because it never passed...basically my body stayed pregnant, but the egg was not developing, indicating an issue with the egg, which would have nothing to do with breastfeeding.

    I became pregnant with my 2nd child a few months later, my oldest had just turned two. I nursed throughout the pregnancy and tandem nursed both children. When my oldest was about 3 and a half, bedsharing and nursing all night with two got too hard so we transitioned oldest into his own room and bed, which led to pretty effortless night weaning.
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; November 15th, 2015 at 01:25 PM.

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