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Did night weaning help your child start sleeping better?

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  • Did night weaning help your child start sleeping better?

    Hi Everyone,
    We are in the sleep depriving process of trying to night wean our 15 month old (very high needs) toddler. The one and only reason for this is the hope that if there isn't food available all night long, he won't be interested in waking up in the middle of the night anymore. I am sooo tired of being tired for so long! He actually cut himself down to just one feeding a night really early on...maybe 2 months old, so I thought he'd give this one up naturally, but he hasn't.

    I am just wondering from other parents at what age you night weaned your child and most importantly....did they start sleeping through the night then and how many nights into night weaning did it take for them to start sleeping better (if they did)? Thanks!! A tired mama.

  • #2
    I think 'better' can be a tricky word. I slept better of course especially when I night weaned my second- whose nursing style did not allow me to sleep at the same time as nurse like my first. I night weaned both of mine at around 15 month, very gradually with breaks for colds and traveling. I know it was mostly for my benefit and believe it is no detriment to keep on night nursing if one is OK with it. Saying that sleeping ATTN (all through the night) is the best way for babies/toddlers to sleep is inaccurate for most children. Even my night weaned children still wake up at night. My totally weaned child wakes up most nights too!
    See thease threads for some insights on this idea-
    http://www.attachmentparenting.org/forums/showthread.php?t=3687&highlight=sleep+night
    http://www.attachmentparenting.org/forums/showthread.php?t=3773&highlight=sleep+night
    http://www.attachmentparenting.org/forums/showthread.php?t=697 http://www.attachmentparenting.org/faq/html/feedfaq.php#3

    Were you talking about fully weaning?

    I encourage you to gently lesson the amount of night nursing so you can get the rest you need.

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    • #3
      Thank you Naomi. No, I am not planning to fully wean, just night wean. I have had mastitis repeatedly, four times in which I have had to have antibiotics and probably another 10 where it has resolved on its own with better nutrition, more rest, etc. My son has been a "chomper" since birth...was a preemie...and just has never had a good latch so though I am no longer in pain all the time while nursing, I'm also not totally comfortable. The lactation consultant I've worked with said that he is damaging one nipple in particular. Plus, I feel like we'll both sleep better hopefully and I'll be less run down if I'm not getting up to nurse him at night. Incidentally, when he wakes up to nurse, about half the time it takes literally 2 hours to get him to go back to sleep...he just thinks I've slept a few hours and now I'm ready to go!

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      • #4
        nightweaning did not change either of my son's sleep habits. STTN is a developmental milestone that does not typically happen before age 3 and beyond.

        you say "getting up to nurse him at night". are you co-sleeping? having him next to you will allow you to get more sleep.

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        • #5
          Here is a great link at kellymom
          http://www.kellymom.com/bf/weaning/weaning-night.html

          and here is a forum thread on mastitis (just in case you over looked an idea!)
          http://www.attachmentparenting.org/f...ead.php?t=4376

          Let us know how it is going..this is always a hot topic and we would all like to hear of the progress.

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          • #6
            Well I just wanted to give a little update... Night weaning has gone wonderfully! My husband had a four day weekend, so we waited until the third night to start having him get up in the middle of the night with him, because it always seems they're relationshiph is closer after a few full days together. There was no crying at all! I couldn't even believe it. I had been so anxious over not knowing how to handle it if he did protest that it was daddy and not mommy. First night he just woke up once briefly, second night woke up 5 times but in a short time span of about two hours around when he'd normally nurse, and then slept another 6 hours straight. My husband offered him water which he pushed away at first but then took. We did go out of town without daddy for a few days which did throw things off, but across the 8-9 days that we have been home, he has slept through the night 4 times!! When he is waking up, he has been up for much much shorter periods of time, like 5-15 minutes instead of 1-3 hours.... Very happy we did this. Night nursing was cutting into everyone's sleep. I will say though that the timing has to be right because we did try this about 6 weeks back, and my son cried for 20 minutes fairly hysterically and I decided I wasn't really okay with that even though he was "in the arms of a loving parent" as they say. Right now he has been sleeping for 12 hours straight...a miracle. I could count on two hands the times in his life that he has slept more than 8 hours straight. Woo hoo! Now if we can just get him to stop fighting me at naptime, but that will be a different post....

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            • #7
              so glad you found a solution for your family!

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              • #8
                Great to hear....It sounds like you found that 'window' that worked for everyone.

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                • #9
                  Alright...just had to update this one last time since it has been close to two months. My son has slept through the night all but four nights in the past month...usually about 10 1/2 hours straight. With waking up, each of those nights were when his schedule was thrown off (ie. mama gone for the night and dad forgetting a bedtime snack...thanks dad!....or dad being out of town and I think missing him). Anyhow, apparently he was very very ready to quit eating at night. I am so happy because I feel like my daytime parenting and my general health are 1000 times better now that I'm not up at night!

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                  • #10
                    Yeah! there is a light at the end of the tunnel everybody...and then another tunnel...and then another light...etc..... etc....

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                    • #11
                      Our son is almost 4 and no weaning so far. He'll know when it's time for him to stop breast feeding. Until then all we have to do is be receptive to his communication.

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