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Thread: Night Weaning

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    257

    Default Night Weaning

    Well, I finally realize I have to night wean. Has anyone done this, how do I do it, and can it work?

    My DS9 is having a kidney transplant in a little over 2 weeks. The hospital will not allow my 7 month old to stay with me or another person in a parent room so I can be close to both children. The baby will need to sleep in a hotel. The transplant coordinator said she did all she could and the surgeon even stepped in but no luck I am really sad about this but I need to make it as easy as possible on my help. I can't leave them with a baby who wakes every 2 hours through the night so I need to start this now.

    We are planning on getting a crib (instead of cosleeping) and my DH will get up with him after a last nursing session at around 10 or 11. He will get the baby until 6 or 7 am. Does he need a bottle or should DH just try to get him to sleep without it?

    How can I do this? I really need some suggestions.

    Oh, I forgot to add that the transplant coordinator said that I might want to try to wean him!! That made me mad.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    1,064

    Default Re: Night Weaning

    Oh my gosh, what a horrible situation! I'm so sorry your family is going through this. I have no experience with this, so these are thoughts just off the top of my head. Is your baby used to taking an occasional bottle? If he is used to nursing quite a bit at night, I would think you would need to give some milk by bottle at least for awhile. You could try gradually spacing out the night feedings, or gradually reducing the amount of milk in the bottle at each night feeding, or some of each. I'm hoping the hospital will supply you with a pump and allow the baby to come during the day to nurse? Hopefully someone else will have more ideas for you.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    176

    Default Re: Night Weaning

    Best of luck to you. Since your DS is 7 months I assume that he's into solids now. Try to give him a "dinner" around 6:30PM or 7:00. I used to feed my daugter 4 ounces of sweet potato, squash or whatever vegetable is in season. Accompany this with 2 or 3 oz of Juice. Try to unwind and read to him at this time in crib. Put him into bed once you see signs of tiredness, (rubbing eyes or yawning). At this time if your husband helps you, you might want to be expressing your milk with a pump. Save this for a feeding. If he wakes up at night, feed him with a bottle (6-8 oz) only one at night until he goes the whole night through. Hope this help, this is how I night weaned my daugter, she's been sleeping the whole night since her 8th month (10-11 Hrs a night)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    307

    Default Re: Night Weaning

    Many hospitals have a special area for pumping mothers, usually somewhere near the NICU. I would definitely ask if you can use that area so that your husband can give the baby your milk at night if you absolutely cannot be there and the baby absolutely cannot be at the hospital.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    257

    Default Re: Night Weaning

    The problem is my husband will be in the hospital too!! He is the donor. I am going to see if my MIL will take Ryan for a couple of hours over the next two weekends to help him get used to her. She will be with him at night in a hotel across the street.

    I don't imagine they will let me use a breast pump since they are very unsupportive, much to my complete and utter surprise. The pumps are probably exclusively used for moms of babies in the NICU. It's also in another area of the hospital so more time away from both of them. I am going to buy a pump or rent one from my local center for breastfeeding. You know, my son was there after birth and they in no way encouraged or helped me to breastfeed. I should have seen the signs then.....

    Thanks for the advice about the bedtime routine. I think the plan is my husband will get up with him at night and I will pump for the next two weeks. He can feed him the expressed breast milk one time and try rocking to sleep the others. It would be nice to get him to sleep through the night anyway. We can go back to all of our "bad habits" like cosleeping and nursing all night when this is all over LOL (not really).

    I appreciate the help. I am usually so strong and not a complainer at all but I am just beside myself. I'll get over it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    18,063

    Default Re: Night Weaning

    could you take shifts at the hospital with your mil? So you each get at least 6 hours of sleep? what are the visting hours like? Do you have to have somebody with both your hubby and son at the same time?

    Try and figure out the less stressfull way to do things both on baby and on you!
    I would think that nursing would comfort both of you during this stressfull time.
    How long will your hubby be under? My mom had a kindeny removed cancer plus she had her ovaries removed and was sedated for the first 3 days. She didn't even know what was going on on the 4th day. After the forth day she was fealing beter and I think If I remember right she got to come home on the 5th day late. On the 6th day she was still wanting the pain killers but by the 7th day after she was off them and just on over the counter stuff.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    257

    Default Re: Night Weaning

    Wow, Andrea.....your mom had it tough! Actually donating a kidney is not that bad. They are going to try to use a laproscopic procedure and technically, he can be discharged the next evening although they recommend two nights. I have him going home to recover for a few more days and then back to the hospital to take over night duty with our son having the surgery!! I'm hoping he's tough Once he takes over nights, I can sleep with Ryan in a hotel and everyone is happy.....well, my 9 year old isn't happy about me leaving but he accepts it and I will be with him the first few nights. It's just those first few nights that I can't get my head around how we can make it easy on everyone. I'm feeling a little better today and actually hoping that the baby will learn to be soothed and go back to sleep with someone else. I keep thinking I'll get a baby that sleeps through the night but I know we'll be back to our old ways as soon as we get home I feel so sad about doing this to him but it's not like I'm letting him CIO.... He might be REALLY mad about not nursing but he won't be scared or alone.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    1,048

    Default Re: Night Weaning

    You have the right perspctive.. he can go a night or two without nursing and still not be nightweaned. He'll probably be MUCH more accepting of the fact that he can't nurse if you are away. They demand it when mom's around, but they seem to understand when it's not available. When my mom would watch dd (not all night, but late, past when she'd usually nurse) she'd want to be held or whatever, but it wasn't traumatic for her to not be able to nurse.. and she never took a bottle, so she just went without. But if I were there and tried not nursing... whew!! If your MIL is patient.. and well rested... I wouldn't worry about it at all.

    That said, there is another option, but it's going to sound a little kooky. Do you have any other breastfeeding friends that you know for sure don't have Hep or HIV? I have nursed another woman's child to sleep before and it worked as well as if she were my own.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    257

    Default Re: Night Weaning

    I have to tell you that actually crossed my mind! But, no, I don't have any nursing friends. Most of my friends have children around 6-9 years old. My DS is 6 years younger than my daughter. Thanks for the response!! I'm hoping he'll be okay with all of this....we start tonight

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