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Old 08-22-2013, 12:51 PM   #1
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When do you night wean?

What age do you typically try to night wean? My DD is 9 1/2 mos, and while I'm not planning on or thinking about weaning her totally anytime soon, I'm kind of wondering about nights. A couple of reasons...

1) She does eat some at night, but I'm mostly just her pacifier. She throws a royal fit if I try to replace my boob with her paci (and she does love her paci, but wants my boob at night). There is no consoling her...she hasn't always been this way, the paci used to work after she was done eating, but now, only the boob will do most times.

2) We would like to try for another baby soon. Please note: I am NOT sacrificing my DD's needs, or trying to rush her into growing up, over the thought of another baby that may or may not ever come. However, since she's not really eating most of that time....we just are starting to think about getting my fertility back on track.

3) It is uncomfortable for me, and I haven't been able to rest well with her constantly attached to me. I posted not too long ago about trying to get her to sleep in her own bed, and we've made great progress: she sleeps in the crib for her naps, and from bedtime until about midnight (sometimes a little earlier). Once we reach that point, I just can't her to go back to sleep in her crib for more than a couple minutes at a time. That's when it starts that only the boobie will do, and I don't know if her starting to sleep on her own is what brought that on...probably.

She's my first baby I've nursed, so I've never had to wean from nursing before, totally new at this. Someone on here told me (when I asked about sleep solutions) that a baby her age no longer NEEDED to nurse through the night. I would like to eventually try to get her in her crib all night long, so I don't know if night weaning is the key to that, or not. Anyway, any help with this would be appreciated! Thank you!


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Old 08-26-2013, 01:54 AM   #2
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Re: When do you night wean?

Subbing as it is 1:55am and my ds has been connected to me like a pacifier since 1:00am and I have come on here to post the exact same thing!

DS is 7mo and has never taken a nuk - tried multiple brands and styles since birth - and also throws a royal fit if you try and give him one in place of my nipple. I can't take the sleepless nights and constant side lying nursing anymore! I feel your frustration and hope there are some answers and suggestions
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:18 AM   #3
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Can your husband/SO come in when she wakes up and try to put her back down? She associates you with boob so of course she's not going to take the pacifier. When we night weaned, I would have my husband come in and soothe him and he literally would go right back to sleep or fall asleep shortly after cause he didn't get what he wanted and daddy couldn't provide for him. Maybe if you have to be the one, rock her instead of nursing, or find another way to soothe her. Walk out of the room with her and rock her to sleep outside her room. I don't have much advice except be consistent. It's hard at first but if you stick through it, it will get easier and she will sleep through the night without nursing. I want to say my son was around the same age too when we night weaned.
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Old 08-26-2013, 09:42 AM   #4
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Re: When do you night wean?

Most breastfeeding friendly people do not suggest night weaning before 1 year of age. Honestly, I only night weaned 1 of my 3. She was 2 1/2 and I was 6 months pregnant. Otherwise, I just let them night wean themselves.

That said, Jay Gordon has a gentle way of night weaning (although he recommends waiting until at least 1 year of age).
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Old 10-05-2013, 07:59 PM   #5
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Re: When do you night wean?

Our son is almost 10months old now. I would really like to night wean him so I can actually get some rest. Lately he has been waking more at night & crying. He also won't sleep in the crib he hollars for hours if I try to get him to sleep in the crib or anywhere if he doesn't want to sleep even if I am in the room. I just don't know what to do. He will nap in the crib, but his naps are shorter. Any ideas?
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Old 10-07-2013, 02:17 PM   #6
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Re: When do you night wean?

We are starting to night wean our son at 7 months old. He is 22lbs and the doctor said he has plenty of "reserves" (yes the doctor called my son fat) and does not need to nurse at night. I am also the only income in the house so getting up for work after a night of getting up to nurse several times was hard and effecting my ability to function at work, so we chose to night wean before a year.
We started with a solid consistent bedtime routine (bath, pjs, book or song, nurse, bed). We keep the room dimly light and have white noise going at bedtime. I end the night feeding when he slows his swallowing to every 5 sucks. This means he is drowsy but not asleep when I lay him down. I don't give him a pacifier, because if I do he cries each time he wakes up for us to come put it back in (although there are several in his bed for him to find and put in himself if he wants). I give him his favorite blanket that he rubs on his face, kiss him good night, tell him I love him, turn on his mobil, and walk out of the room. The first time he cried 25 minutes, then the next night 15 minutes, then 5, then not at all.
For the night waking after the bedtime stuff we started going in trying to soothe him by patting, rubbing his blanket on his face and singing to him, but he just got more angry. We decided that he wanted to eat and if we weren't going to feed him our presence just made it worse, so we let him cry. It was hard, but better than trying to sooth him. The first time we tried to sooth him he cried for an hour! The crying seemed the same whether it was I or my husband who went in. When we stopped going in and trying to sooth him, he cried for 10 minutes and would then moan for about 3 minutes and then fall back asleep. We stopped using the baby monitor because if we weren't going to go in there until after 10 minutes we could hear 10 minutes of crying just fine without it. (His room is next to ours.)
The final results are my son goes to bed without a pacifier, drowsy but awake. He falls asleep on his own with his favorite blanket in his hands. He sleeps from 9pm-6am. I nurse him at 6am before going to work and he goes back to sleep until almost 9am most days. I read some chart that said he could go 7.5+ hours before he needed to nurse again at this age and with taking 2 meals with solids a day. So I don't make him go 12 hours, and it is nice for me to nurse him before going to work, so I don't feel so full before my first pumping brake at 9am.
I hope my experience helps.
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Old 10-08-2013, 11:34 PM   #7
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I would just try to get her to not use you as a pacifier. Nursing is one thing; being attached all night is another. It's the latter that's interfering with your quality of sleep, right?

If you can, sit up to nurse and take her off before she falls asleep. It will be rough for a few nights because you'll have to wake yourself up more, but it's worth it and you'll both sleep better in the long run. You can still nurse her at night, just try to get to the point where it's not ALL night.
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Old 12-29-2013, 03:19 PM   #8
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Re: When do you night wean?

We have gone back and forth on night weaning- basically getting there but then back sliding for one reason or another. The things that have helped are for my husband to feed her a bottle of pumped milk in the night so that I am not tempting her with the boob right there, to sleep in a different room (we share a bedroom but my husband and I, or sometimes just I, have moved to a different room because I swear she smells me,) Or sometimes I do breastfeed at night but then it is a sitting up position and she eats and then goes back to sleep in her crib.

I personally would love it if I could just cosleep and basically stay asleep while nursing but it really didn't work for me or for my baby. We had to do some cry-it-out stuff early on so that we could at least get to a point where now she goes to sleep easily and peacefully at night and when/if she wakes up, she just eats (nurses or bottle from dad) and then goes easily and peacefully in the crib when she has finished eating.
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Old 12-29-2013, 08:33 PM   #9
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I didn't even think about it until after 1 yr. Then it wasn't until 18 months or so that we used the No Cry Sleep Solution to get her to stop nursing all night. After that I still let her nurse when she wanted, but would pull off when she was done drinking so we were no longer nursing all night long. That made a huge difference. She night weaned completely a bit after she turned 2, and did it on her own.
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