I am glad you are updating...i need to know how this is going because at some point i am going to do this too.
Corinne i only nursed my boys until 12 months and they took a bottle so it was so much easier. Naya has never had a bottle and is my needy girl for sure. Not sure if its because she was born early or not. Both my middle child and naya were born at 35 weeks. Like i day shy of 36 with no problems at all and 7.5 lbs. I follow you on here because i knew that you were still getting up a few times at night. I need to night wean at some point but she is back to waking only once right now. The last week anyway. Keep updating us Mara i am following you on here and fb.
OK, so phase 2, night 2... went down easily just after 8 (we were out late)... woke up at 10ish, I nursed her back down, and then she woke up again a few minutes later and I just had to lay with her while she fully fell asleep.
The she woke at 1:30 and was PISSED I wouldn't feed her. She cried for a long time. (Erin, she is definitely awake at this point, and often crawls over to the water bottle herself.) I'm pretty sure I ended up crawling into her toddler bed expecting her to follow me... and then I woke up hours later, wondering why my feet were hanging off the edge of the bed... and then where the hell she was... yeah, she was sleeping in my bed! So I got up to pee (love being pregnant!), and then got in bed with her. She slept til 5:50, at which point when she woke, I just nursed her. I think that time i let her nurse a little and then counted to 10 so she would pop off... but she woke once more before 7:30 and latched again.
So, I guess last night was really a lot better. Let's hope for even better again tonight!
Mara & Joel, 2009
Ugh... as I sit here drinking coffee for the first time in MONTHS... phase 2, night 3 was the hardest yet. She went down about 7:45 pretty easily. She slept until 11:45. I obviously noticed because it was a "long" stretch for her, and I noticed she was sleeping through any chance to nurse again before morning. So when she woke at that time, first she was just upset and cried for a long time. Her behavior during these moments is very hard for me to deal with because if she doesn't see my boob out, she doesn't really let me come near her, yet she also obviously doesn't want me to leave. So she'll sit within arms reach of me, but if I try to pat her back or rub her legs or anything, she screams at me and swats my hands away- and gets really angry. I try to offer her water, and keep telling her that we'll nurse again when the sun is up, now it's dark, milk is sleeping, and she needs to sleep too. She swats at the water bottle, but when I put it back on the shelf on the headboard she screams and crawls to get it and throws it at me, but she still won't drink it. So basically, this stuff went on for about an hour... then she started clawing at my shirt. I had to call my husband finally because it was seriously getting ridiculous. She was SO upset (gasping for air, shaking, because she was fighting me trying to get into my shirt so bad)- but when she saw my husband come in, she crawled into my arms and wouldn't look at him. (She is one freaking complex little kid!) I was really tired last night because I had been up late the night before and gotten up early with her. Eventually, I dozed off in bed and she I guess just fell asleep next to me. I got out of the room at 1:45 to go turn off the lights downstairs, etc and went back to bed myself.
I wish I could remember the time, but she woke once more during the no-nursing portion of the night and sat in bed next to me screaming. I don't think I was being very attentive to her because I was just so dang tired myself. The funny part though, is that I know she was sitting there next to me screaming, and then all of a sudden she let out a freaking horn-blow of a fart, and then she face planted and was asleep.
She woke up again around 6:30 I think, and of course I just nursed her. I feel a little bad, because obviously, the different times of the rising and setting sun can confuse this process- I remember seeing her look out the window when I was offering her the breast, and I'm sure she was thinking, "but the sun isn't up!" because it wasn't really quite light yet. Sigh.
So anyway... that's that. 5 nights in, we've had what will hopefully be our worst night. We'll see how tonight goes!
Mara & Joel, 2009
OK- need advice on this one now...
So DD was super tired today (because of how much she was awake last night), but she's a crap napper and always has been, so she still only napped for 40 minutes today. So she's was so tired tonight.... was asleep by 7:15. Then she woke at 9:30, and again at 10. Both of these times I went in, gave her a kiss, a drink of water (she asked for it), cuddled her for like less than a minute and she was back asleep- I laid her down, and she's asleep.
So the problem of course is that she's not asking to nurse when it's still time to nurse. Actually, I even asked her if she wanted to nurse, but she just put her head on my shoulder, and let me lay her down 30 secs later. But watch, I bet you she goes crazy again later tonight when she really wants it.
So should I force a feed on her when she wakes before 11, or should I just respect that she doesn't want it and try to push her through anyway?
Last edited by Marite13; 01-22-2012 at 12:37 PM.
Mara & Joel, 2009
I would not force a feeding on a toddler who is supposed to be sleeping, I think that it would be a very confusing message to a child with no understanding of the concept of time. Were it me, and I wanted to night wean, that would mean no nursing from bedtime till whatever time in the AM you choose. It just seems too nebulous that 11 is the cut off ~ to a child who has fallen asleep then woken up so soon after going to bed, I don't think that she possibly has any idea if is 10:30 or 3. To let her feed at one time but not another seems as though it could be confusing to her.
Is she eating good dinners? Assuming that she is well fed, she is not waking out of hunger (to me it sounds like she is just so incredibly overtired her sleep bank is all messed up). Since we know it isn't a hunger issue, nursing isn't going to solve anything, IMO. I'd work towards not nursing at all at night, if it were me, and not knowing everything about your situation and or method. Hope that helps a little and good luck!
Wow. I really think this will be Morgan when I night wean. She is really going to go crazy! I have read Jay's method, but agree with the pp about the 11 pm cut off time. That was my problem with his program. A toddler doesn't know what time it is when they wake up that first time. If their first waking is 10 pm and they are allowed to nurse, but the next night their first waking is 11:30 and aren't allowed to nurse, that is sending mixed messages and probably confusing them. I half-heartedly tried Jay's method a few months ago and the 11pm - 6 am just didn't work. I felt horrible teling Morgan "no" at 11;30 one night, but yes at 10:30 the next. Needless to say, she is still nursing 2-3 times per night I think when I finally wean her, I am going to have to do a firm no-nursing at all. Otherwise she is just going to keep getting up and trying to nurse. She has given up the bedtime feed very easily. It is the middle of the night that she is really attached to. Keep your head up!! This phase won't last forever!! I am cheering for you
Naya changes it up on me all the time. Just when i think things are getting better she starts waking up 3 to 4 times again. So some nights its 1 time and most its more. Keep us posted mara...i am so not ready for all this yet even though i am so tired.
I am so glad I came across this post. I have a 12 month old who is up more often than a newborn. We have had a horrible year of ear infections and croup/bronchitis. I haven't done any sleep training because of those things, and he's in the same room as his brother. It's SO much easier to just put a boob in his mouth and get him back to sleep but we have some seriously bad habits going on. I think I am going to try Dr. Jays pattern. The kid is the best eater in the world (cleans his big brothers plate) after eating his own. Please keep posting updates so I can see what to expect.
So... the rest of last night... She woke again just around midnight, but I got her back down pretty quickly- drink of water, a few words, she was good.
She slept til 5 I guess, and then when she woke she was up for a while- but she didn't ask to nurse, or try to tear at my clothes or anything. She leaned against the head board kind of quietly crying until finally, I guess she was tired enough to let me cuddle her back to sleep. She woke again around 6:30 I think, or maybe not til 7, and then she nursed until we got up (once on each side).
So, hopefully, that one night was really the worst, and we move on from there.
As for the feeding at one time, but not another... the only reason I'm not totally against it, is because if we're going from nursing all night to not nursing even for most of the night, if feels a little less HUGE- it's gradual. Yes, it may be confusing to a toddler, but, I can only assume that many things we do and say to them could be confusing for all kinds of reasons. To me, it seems like DD is sort of getting it herself that once she's asleep she doesn't nurse after that- considering she didn't ask for it all last night. So I'll follow her lead, and hope that she'll continue to give up the later feeds as easily as she does the early ones.
"Since we know it isn't a hunger issue, nursing isn't going to solve anything, IMO."
Nursing isn't, and never has been, just about feeding for us. Beni did really well on the first three nights of this plan when she was still allowed to nurse for 10 seconds every time she wanted to/when she woke. Obviously, she wasn't settling easily and quickly those nights because she was filling her belly in 10 seconds of nursing. What she was getting was comfort. Obviously the key for us now is to figure out what else can comfort her as well as even 10 seconds of nursing... and hopefully also get to a point where she sleeps through.
I don't know how many nights she has to not nurse to be considered "night-weaned" but she hasn't nursed at night in 4 nights now. She certainly hasn't stopped waking up. I guess maybe this is because I have led her down a path of destruction into having a completely messed up sleep bank. I don't know, call me inexperienced or stupid or clueless or whatever...but since she was born, she never napped for long, and I was never able to get her back down when she woke from a (one-sleep cycle) nap bright eyed, ready to play. I tried keeping a strict schedule (instead of following her cues) for naps, and then I tried really following her cues at other times... nothing I ever did made her sleep for longer than 1 sleep cycle for naps, except napping with her. Even then, the longest naps she ever took were 90 minutes. So, I don't know. I don't know how to fix her broken little self. I have for the last week, kept a schedule again for naps- getting her down between 11:30 and 12:00 every day. She has been sleeping 40-75 minutes for these naps.
Anyway... STTN would be a totally welcome side-effect of night-weaning, but alas, it is actually not my primary goal. My primary goal is just to not nurse her at night, to give my nipples a break for now (and keep them to one child at night once baby comes), and to learn to get her back to sleep in some other way. We might not be reaching any measure of success as some of you would measure it, but, I do feel we're making progress. My nips are way less sore, and that is great!
(Sorry, I know this last post is defensive in parts, but it was pretty much impossible for me to read some of what was written in the last responses without translating it into, "you're a crappy parent." So forgive my defensiveness.)
Last edited by Marite13; 01-23-2012 at 04:34 AM.
Mara & Joel, 2009