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Old 07-12-2010, 09:39 AM   #1
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Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

Hey mamas, DS is 14 1/2 months, and still nursing. I know I've posted about this before, but I could cry, I'm getting so frusterated here!
Bed time is killing me. I've tried having the same schedual, and it doesn't matter. Even for naptimes, I can try for hours to put him down, even when he's exahusted. He's a VERY busy child.
But bedtime... after dinner he gets a bath, then playtime to burn more energy if he needs it. (I think I might cut this out, but sometimes I think he seriously needs it, I think he sleeps better afterwards.) then story time, nurse, and if he doesn't fall, (which he usually doesn't) it's into his crib to CIO for 5-10 mins. Then I go in and nurse him, (sometimes we repeat this twice.) usually the 2nd time he falls asleep.
But it takes an hour or so to get him down, sometimes longer. I can't really leave him in bed, and back away, because he's in a queen sized mattress/boxspring on the floor, and he can get out. If he had his way, he would NOT sleep. honestly. I don't know what it is.. it takes about 3 hours sometimes to get him down for a nap!!! when he's so obviously tired.
He's also teething, so I get that it can cause him pain/sleeplessness, but he's always been like this.
He's been waking up 5-6 times a night to nurse, so I feel like I haven't slept at all. I can't just change his diaper and rock him back to sleep (I'd KIND of like to night wean, or at least get down to like 2 sessions!) He pushes me, and cries, and will not fall back to sleep. There isn't any option to wake his father up; he's studying Greek in one semester, and has class 8am-1pm mon-fri, and comes home and studies all day. So I give in and nurse.
I'd like to consider TTC at some point in the somewhat near future, but being as exhausted as I am with one, I can't imagine having a NB, or getting pregnant right now.
Oh, also~ At his last appointment, he'd only gained 1 lb in about 4 months, so his ped has me monitoring what he eats, and *trying* to get him to drink 2-3 glasses of milk a day (he'll drink 4-6 oz max 2% or coconut milk a day!)
so it makes me feel worse about wanting to night wean him. (I'm torn just because too) but I do believe a lot of it has to do with him being SOO active. He's a busy, sassy child. It makes it more tiring because I MUST chase him all day, he screams bloody murder when I try to change his clothes/diaper, try to put him in his high chair even though he's hungry, put him in his stroller, don't do what he wants, or try to hold his hand. He's Mr. Independent for sure! I need some sleep so I don't get frusterated with him during the day!
Anyone BTDT with suggestions would rock...

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Old 07-12-2010, 10:05 AM   #2
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

First let me say I have btdt and hugs....I completely understand what you are saying on all accounts. And I agree, you do need to attend to your own needs so that you can be available to take care of your ds. (it's like putting your oxygen mask on first...)

I agree with helping him burn his energy during the day so that he will be good and tired. I also know from experience from my own 5 dc, that if you tire them out too much, sometimes bedtime will backfire. (but each kid is different, so I know that your child might not have a problem with that)

To wean from too many night nursings, here's what I have done:
give a paci instead
pat their backs/tummy
give a firm no and say something like, it's bedtime, now go to sleep....and with this I will put my hand on the child's back to let him/her know I mean business.

I know that not everyone here will agree with my methods and I am certainly not advocating this for a small baby, but for my family, after a year, I try to keep night nursings down to a minimum. (one is about my limit, except for times of illness, etc) I just feel that all members of the family have to learn to fit in somewhat and to respect each other.

Good luck. It will get better, I promise.
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Old 07-12-2010, 10:18 AM   #3
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

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First let me say I have btdt and hugs....I completely understand what you are saying on all accounts. And I agree, you do need to attend to your own needs so that you can be available to take care of your ds. (it's like putting your oxygen mask on first...)

I agree with helping him burn his energy during the day so that he will be good and tired. I also know from experience from my own 5 dc, that if you tire them out too much, sometimes bedtime will backfire. (but each kid is different, so I know that your child might not have a problem with that)

To wean from too many night nursings, here's what I have done:
give a paci instead
pat their backs/tummy
give a firm no and say something like, it's bedtime, now go to sleep....and with this I will put my hand on the child's back to let him/her know I mean business.

I know that not everyone here will agree with my methods and I am certainly not advocating this for a small baby, but for my family, after a year, I try to keep night nursings down to a minimum. (one is about my limit, except for times of illness, etc) I just feel that all members of the family have to learn to fit in somewhat and to respect each other.

Good luck. It will get better, I promise.

Thanks mama. He has ENDLESS energy. I just tried to put him down for a nap; he nursed, and got off of the bed, and is now playing. haha.
He won't take a paci. (started trying that when he was young) and will NOT let me rub his back, because he gets ticked. He pushes me away and screams. so in all honesty, I feel like the ONLY way I can comfort him is to offer a boob!!
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Old 07-12-2010, 10:39 AM   #4
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

I would really try a calm,but firm voice and manner. It can't hurt.

I really know what you mean about the lo getting mad, my dd does that right now. And my oldest, when he was a baby used to cry until he threw up if we left him in his crib. So, for each one of our children, we have had to tailor fit our responses. My youngest (12months), still nurses once a night and sleeps in our bed, so naps are difficult for us. Basically I just nurse her and hold her for about an hour or two. I really wish i could put her down, so that I could get some chores done. I just remember that this time in their lives are truly short and no one nurses at night forever. And eventually they move to their own beds. Since my dd is my last one, I am trying to enjoy her cuddley-ness and to just forget about vacuuming!

Again, hugs, enjoy your lo.....I think that in a few months, you will look back at this post and chuckle. (and reflect on the new issues that he brings.....lol)
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Old 07-12-2010, 11:04 AM   #5
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

I have a terrible-sleeper, super energetic 15 month old, so I feel your pain. Sleep of any kind has been a struggle around here from the beginning, but our situation has gotten better. I'm not totally clear on when your routine starts in the evening and whether you're cosleeping or not, so I'll just tell you what I do that works for us, and you can see if it would help you.

Naps: I gave up long ago trying to schedule or force DS to nap. I can tell when he starts running down and just "encourage him" from there; it usually either starts with him nursing or a walk in his stroller/ride in the car/ride in the Ergo. I will hardly ever take him straight to bed at the beginning of his tired period b/c he'll just fight it by playing in bed. We do one of the other aforementioned relaxing activities instead. After he konks or gets really close, I'll take him and lay down in bed with him and nurse him, if he's not completely asleep; just lay him down and leave him if he is. He typically either tapes a nap midmorning and late afternoon or one big early afternoon one, but again, I let him lead on when he wants to go down.

Nighttime: depends on the nap pattern he had during the day. If he just had one nap, he'll be tired by about 6 and we'll start our routine then. If he had 2 naps, he probably won't be ready to go down till 8-9. Our routine is just bath with mommy, daddy does PJ-duty and tries to get in a solid feed (DS is also too busy to eat), take any meds necessary, and possibly pat him down to sleep on the couch. Usually DS is still awake when I get out of the bath, and if so, we let him run around till he winds down (usually not long at all), and then he wants to nurse. Depending on how tired we both are, I may go get in bed with him or just nurse him on the couch with DH. DS usually drifts off in that feed, and I could go lay him down in bed if I wanted or just hold him till I go to bed. No fights. During the night he wakes several times, but goes back to sleep with nursing. It's definitely not ideal for me, but it works with pretty much no crying.

I would love to be able to just put him in a crib and have him sleep soundly like I hear about other people doing. I think some of us just have bad sleepers (DH is a terrible sleeper too) and we have to deal with it as best we can....
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Old 07-12-2010, 11:23 AM   #6
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

My LO is also 14.5 months. I try to nurse her to sleep because that is easiest, but often she is still awake after nursing. Then my husband is good at putting her down. His strategy is to take her into the dark bedroom and lay down with her while holding her tightly - he calls it "lock down" - so that she can't just get up and crawl away. Then he rocks/jiggles her. She will often vocalize "Uh, uh, uh, uh" but she doesn't really cry. Once she falls asleep, he can leave her and she'll stay asleep. If he tries this for about 10 minutes and she's not going to sleep, then he'll just bring her back out to play and we'll try again later. If I try to do this it doesn't work so well though because then she just wants to nurse.

We do co-sleep and we night-nurse, and I don't feel like going to bed at night/nap and night-weaning are really connected. My older daughter went to bed without nursing since 11 months and I didn't night-wean her until 27 months. Night-weaning also didn't make her sleep all night - she still wakes up most nights, to use the potty or just come in our room or whatever.

I also wanted to point out, regarding that your ped has you giving cow's milk for weight gain, that your breast milk has more calories than cow's milk anyway. Does your ped realize he's still nursing? http://www.kellymom.com/nutrition/mi...kcalories.html
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Old 07-12-2010, 11:39 AM   #7
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

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Originally Posted by lovespepper View Post
I would really try a calm,but firm voice and manner. It can't hurt.

I really know what you mean about the lo getting mad, my dd does that right now. And my oldest, when he was a baby used to cry until he threw up if we left him in his crib. So, for each one of our children, we have had to tailor fit our responses. My youngest (12months), still nurses once a night and sleeps in our bed, so naps are difficult for us. Basically I just nurse her and hold her for about an hour or two. I really wish i could put her down, so that I could get some chores done. I just remember that this time in their lives are truly short and no one nurses at night forever. And eventually they move to their own beds. Since my dd is my last one, I am trying to enjoy her cuddley-ness and to just forget about vacuuming!

Again, hugs, enjoy your lo.....I think that in a few months, you will look back at this post and chuckle. (and reflect on the new issues that he brings.....lol)
haha..."I think that in a few months, you will look back at this post and chuckle. (and reflect on the new issues that he brings.....lol)"
Not so sure about that one! I've been dealing with this since he was a newbie. We used to cosleep. I did the crib thing, and he'd throw up too, so that's when I took to just nursing him to sleep in his mattress on the floor and leaving him there, so as not to disturb him. and he's not a cuddler. It's nurse, or pushing me away. I WISH he'd cuddle!
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Old 07-12-2010, 11:44 AM   #8
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

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Originally Posted by konayossie View Post
I have a terrible-sleeper, super energetic 15 month old, so I feel your pain. Sleep of any kind has been a struggle around here from the beginning, but our situation has gotten better. I'm not totally clear on when your routine starts in the evening and whether you're cosleeping or not, so I'll just tell you what I do that works for us, and you can see if it would help you.

Naps: I gave up long ago trying to schedule or force DS to nap. I can tell when he starts running down and just "encourage him" from there; it usually either starts with him nursing or a walk in his stroller/ride in the car/ride in the Ergo. I will hardly ever take him straight to bed at the beginning of his tired period b/c he'll just fight it by playing in bed. We do one of the other aforementioned relaxing activities instead. After he konks or gets really close, I'll take him and lay down in bed with him and nurse him, if he's not completely asleep; just lay him down and leave him if he is. He typically either tapes a nap midmorning and late afternoon or one big early afternoon one, but again, I let him lead on when he wants to go down.

Nighttime: depends on the nap pattern he had during the day. If he just had one nap, he'll be tired by about 6 and we'll start our routine then. If he had 2 naps, he probably won't be ready to go down till 8-9. Our routine is just bath with mommy, daddy does PJ-duty and tries to get in a solid feed (DS is also too busy to eat), take any meds necessary, and possibly pat him down to sleep on the couch. Usually DS is still awake when I get out of the bath, and if so, we let him run around till he winds down (usually not long at all), and then he wants to nurse. Depending on how tired we both are, I may go get in bed with him or just nurse him on the couch with DH. DS usually drifts off in that feed, and I could go lay him down in bed if I wanted or just hold him till I go to bed. No fights. During the night he wakes several times, but goes back to sleep with nursing. It's definitely not ideal for me, but it works with pretty much no crying.

I would love to be able to just put him in a crib and have him sleep soundly like I hear about other people doing. I think some of us just have bad sleepers (DH is a terrible sleeper too) and we have to deal with it as best we can....
oh man! I feel ya mama. lol. We used to cosleep, but now DS is on a queen mattress on his floor, so I go and nurse him and then leave when he's done. DS is too heavy for me to carry in his beco anymore, and he'd refuse it anyways. Sometimes he'll sit in the stroller, but not usually. (can you say STRONG willed?!) and I'll nurse him, but like I said, he'll just roll over and get up to play. The car.... sometimes he'll fall asleep. He'll sleep 10-15 minutes, and I cannot move him. If I do, he's awake, and there is no going back to sleep. Ahh, I just don't know.
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Old 07-12-2010, 12:01 PM   #9
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

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My LO is also 14.5 months. I try to nurse her to sleep because that is easiest, but often she is still awake after nursing. Then my husband is good at putting her down. His strategy is to take her into the dark bedroom and lay down with her while holding her tightly - he calls it "lock down" - so that she can't just get up and crawl away. Then he rocks/jiggles her. She will often vocalize "Uh, uh, uh, uh" but she doesn't really cry. Once she falls asleep, he can leave her and she'll stay asleep. If he tries this for about 10 minutes and she's not going to sleep, then he'll just bring her back out to play and we'll try again later. If I try to do this it doesn't work so well though because then she just wants to nurse.

We do co-sleep and we night-nurse, and I don't feel like going to bed at night/nap and night-weaning are really connected. My older daughter went to bed without nursing since 11 months and I didn't night-wean her until 27 months. Night-weaning also didn't make her sleep all night - she still wakes up most nights, to use the potty or just come in our room or whatever.

I also wanted to point out, regarding that your ped has you giving cow's milk for weight gain, that your breast milk has more calories than cow's milk anyway. Does your ped realize he's still nursing? http://www.kellymom.com/nutrition/mi...kcalories.html

Yes~ Hubby can do that. But most times I don't bother asking him because he's tired or whatever. I told him a few times "I need you to help me night wean" and especially right now got "Well, his ped says he needs to eat more, so" Yes, he's done it a handful of times, and he's only ever gotten up with him a few times during the night. The struggle to wake him up was not worth me just taking care of my son and getting him back to sleep asap. It's a bit of a sore subject.
She does indeed know that I'm still nursing. Looking at the food log I'm keeping for him, he still nurses 6-11 times during the course of 24 hours. But he's SUCH a picky eater right now, and he used to be good! I think teething has something to do with it.
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Old 07-12-2010, 12:21 PM   #10
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Re: Would you night wean in this situation? ideas?

We did (and still do) have a lot of issues with nap time with my now 3y/o....i'll say that some days have gotten better

but a suggestion that i had some success with for a while...
for naps (probably to difficult for bedtime but maybe if theres success with naps the threat can trickle over to bed time)
pick a time - so that the body gets in a routine and knows what to expect
make sure that they've had as much excercise as possible before and maybe some sort of snack
nurse and offer any other calming activities
then at your chosen time (a time when typically he seems to need to be asleep)
not allow him to sleep but he's also not allowed to do anything else....just sit on the end of the bed
i'll be honest it _is_ exhausting in the beginning....
i kept having to put my daughter back on the bed and she yelled at me and cried but after a while it was "either you go to sleep or you sit on the bed" and she would choose sleep because just sitting on the bed was really boring!!

as far as the weight...as long as they're growing some i wouldn't worry about it...my daughter is 3 and barely weighs 25lbs and her 10m/o younger sister weighs almost 17lbs! :-D the oldest has been _very_ active from day one!!!!
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