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Thread: Tandem nursing toddler and a newborn.

  1. #1

    Question Tandem nursing toddler and a newborn.

    I can't seem to find a thread specific to this topic (apologies if I just searched horribly), so I decided to create one. I am newly (8 weeks) pregnant and night-nurse my 18 month old. He will be 2 when the baby arrives, so I know a lot will change between now and then, but assuming he still wakes to nurse during the night when the newborn is here I'd like to hear how others have dealt with this. Right now he nurses about 3-5 times a night (over a period of 11-12 hours). That's not counting nursing to sleep and upon wake up, which he sometimes does, sometimes doesn't in the morning.

    Side note - he does nurse during the day still, but it's less and less. He's gone the entire day without nursing when we're out and busy doing new things. When we're home and it's just me and him he'll nurse, but I'd say 3 times tops. I can mostly offer snacks and/or water instead now.

    So, those of you who have or have had a night nursing toddler and a newborn, how did you deal with nighttime? Is it doable? Looking back would you have done anything differently?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Tandem nursing toddler and a newborn.

    Hi I tandem nursed my oldest two. Oldest was two when baby was born but turned three when baby was 2 months old, so there is a little more age difference than you will have. But my older son nursed a lot and overnight so, that is similar.

    We bedshare, so when baby came we continued this. Older son slept between husband and I, and baby on other side of me. When one woke, I nursed him, and if the other woke, I nursed them both at once, or the older one waited. You would be amazed what you can do as far as comfortably positioning 2 kids when you have to. 2 year olds can get to the breast easily and in just about any position. It helped that I had no latch or other issues with baby, our only problem was overproduction, which meant I became easily engorged, and older son got me out of a tight spot more than once!

    When baby was heading towards 8 or 9 months and older son was about 3 and a half, bedsharing with them both became a chore so we worked on transitioning older son to his own bed (and room.) This went reasonably easily. We kept an "open door" (and open bed) policy, if older Ds woke during the night he could come in. This was rare, but he did come in very early in the morning! Both my boys were extremely early risers for years. This must have just been personality, their little sister has loved sleeping "late" from the start.

    The only thing I would have done differently is worried less about my older son waking so much at night. I have learned that many kids are just not developmentally ready to sleep truly long stretches (6 or more hours) until they are 3, 4, or even 5.

    A helpful book is Adventures in Tandem Nursing.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Tandem nursing toddler and a newborn.

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*maddieb View Post
    Hi I tandem nursed my oldest two. Oldest was two when baby was born but turned three when baby was 2 months old, so there is a little more age difference than you will have. But my older son nursed a lot and overnight so, that is similar.

    We bedshare, so when baby came we continued this. Older son slept between husband and I, and baby on other side of me. When one woke, I nursed him, and if the other woke, I nursed them both at once, or the older one waited. You would be amazed what you can do as far as comfortably positioning 2 kids when you have to. 2 year olds can get to the breast easily and in just about any position. It helped that I had no latch or other issues with baby, our only problem was overproduction, which meant I became easily engorged, and older son got me out of a tight spot more than once!

    When baby was heading towards 8 or 9 months and older son was about 3 and a half, bedsharing with them both became a chore so we worked on transitioning older son to his own bed (and room.) This went reasonably easily. We kept an "open door" (and open bed) policy, if older Ds woke during the night he could come in. This was rare, but he did come in very early in the morning! Both my boys were extremely early risers for years. This must have just been personality, their little sister has loved sleeping "late" from the start.

    The only thing I would have done differently is worried less about my older son waking so much at night. I have learned that many kids are just not developmentally ready to sleep truly long stretches (6 or more hours) until they are 3, 4, or even 5.

    A helpful book is Adventures in Tandem Nursing.
    Thank you for sharing your experience! I've been looking online for a copy of that book. I'll definitely read it before baby arrives

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