Let me start by saying, we’re not technically weaned.
My son is two and some change and we’re still nursing about a half an hour or so a day. But that is a huge change from about three months ago when we were still nursing around the clock night and day.
I had really planned to let him self-wean, but as he neared two he showed no signs of slowing down. He still nursed off and on all day and every couple of hours at night. I didn’t even really mind, but my husband and I are trying for baby number two and after having no success and getting some tests run my doctor informed me that I was going to have to seriously wean, maybe even completely, to have any chance of conceiving.
But how to begin?
I started using Jay Gordon’s technique for weaning with co-sleeping. Basically you ease into not nursing from around eleven to six every night. The first night was awful, but we actually got into the swing of things pretty fast. So we did that for a few weeks and also started cutting out some day time nursing. And then Finn got sick.
He was really sick, with stomach flu so bad he ended up in the hospital. The doctors there told me to nurse him as much as I could so I went back to nursing him night and day. We’d cut back once and it wouldn’t be hard to do it again once he was better, right?
Um…no. This is when the real battle began. He had been reminded how much he enjoyed nursing 24/7 and he was not going to give it up without a fight. There was screaming…and tantrums…and more screaming. This went on for about a week. A very long week. It was so hard to have him scream and scream when I knew I could just nurse him and he would stop. But I held strong because I knew giving in was just going to make it take days longer.
We finally got back on track and since then I have dropped more nursing sessions. The one first thing in the morning, which would often last for an hour or hour and a half took a long time for him to let go of. But now we are here, nursing at nap time and right before bed for just about 15 to 30 minutes total. I may still have to drop these but I am holding on to them for now.
This was the first big change he and I had to go through and the first time I had to try to break him if something that was a habit. It was not easy, but I was glad to get to other side of it and see that he still loves me.