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Old 03-06-2007, 11:52 PM   #1
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Not sure if this is more of a breastfeeding issue or a sleep issue (both, I think), so I'm double posting this in Breastfeeding Support and Parenting Talk.

Okay...bear with me, this might be long... But I need some help!

My exclusively-breastfed baby is now 5 months old and is sleeping like a newborn again (but not in the good ways...). He is waking every 2 hours to eat!!! Last night at 2:30 a.m. I was already up feeding him for the 4th time since his bedtime feeding at 7!

At about 8 weeks he slept 6 hours straight for the first time, and by 10 weeks he was *regularly* sleeping 5-6 hours straight, and was waking only twice in the night, then he went down to waking just once around 1-2 a.m. and again in the early morning (5-6 a.m.). At just over 3 months he slept 7 hours 2 nights in a row (I thought 'FINALLY I'M GOING TO BE ABLE TO GET SOME SLEEP!')! Now he's waking every 2 hours, sometimes more frequently, hungry! And it's not just a growth spurt, this has been going on far too long for that (almost 2 months now!).

Why is it that he is sleeping worse now instead of better? He hasn't slept this horribly since he was 6 weeks old, or longer. Why when all the other babies I know are at least close to sleeping through the night is mine stil wanting to eat every 2 hours? Isn't this supposed to get better with age, not worse?

Help please! What am I doing wrong? I am so sleep deprived, I have a constant migraine, I am just at the end of my rope. And now my pedi (groan) is telling me my breastmilk is not fatty enough or that I'm not producing enough or what have you, and that I need to supplement with formula when he is finished nursing. Or just let him cry a little already. Both pieces of advice I am not willing to take.

Any better (more AP- and breastfeeding- friendly) advice for me?

ETA: I have read every book on sleep solutions there is... I've tried so many different things. I've tried comforting and soothing him in ways other than by feeding, but my boy wakes up and he seems sincerely hungry. He is hysterical until I feed him, nothing else works. After he eats he goes right back to sleep... Is this just my lot, to keep waking up every 2 hours???


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Old 03-06-2007, 11:57 PM   #2
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im in the same boat mama! well, my ds doesnt eat every 2 hours, thats every 4 or so, the other wakings he just needs to nurse back to sleep.
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Old 03-07-2007, 12:22 AM   #3
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Maybe your little one is having a growth spurt and he is needing more calories to get him through. Does he eat any solids yet? At around 5 months my DS started waking more frequently and was more hungry. We started solids and he stopped waking up so much. My DS goes through periods where he wakes up a lot and then he has periods where he sleeps all night. Babies just go through phases. It will pass. Good luck
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Old 03-07-2007, 04:52 AM   #4
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My dd was a super feeder and still is - she is 9 months now and wakes at least once a night to feed. She is on solids too, but not a great eater yet, and we don't want to push her. We have been told by our health visitor that she shouldn't be feeding at night (it is called learned hunger rather than genuine hunger I think) but I don't want to deny her when she is obviously hungry.

Anyway, our solution with the problem of being up every two hours to feed in the night (well, my solution, as dh isn't much help and wears ear plugs ) was to co-sleep. I had a c-section too, so had a lot of trouble getting in and out of our high bed all the time. Co-sleeping was a fantastic solution - she just feeds when she wants and all I have to do is switch sides now and then. Give it a go - you'll get some sleep at least! Good luck!
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Old 03-07-2007, 05:59 AM   #5
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growth spurt????
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Old 03-07-2007, 07:05 AM   #6
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sigh...I'm in the same boat ....sigh
My DD nurses almost all night. She is sooo busy during the day learning to crawl, just being curious about the world that she doesn't nurse as much as she used to during the day. She just wants to nurse all night. It seems like it's better when I go and nurse her 4 times a day in a dark room before dinner and then two or three times after dinner before bed. That way she sleeps longer stretches. DD is just starting solids, but that hasn't changed her every two hours or all night long nursing pattern.
I think there is more to it than this, though? Any other mamas have any ideas.
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Old 03-07-2007, 08:04 AM   #7
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I could have written your post....I wonder where my good sleeper went.
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Old 03-07-2007, 12:45 PM   #8
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Same story here--DD is 6 months old, and I thought I was doing something SO wrong--she would be up every two hours: down at 8:30, then 10:30, 12:30, 2:30, 4:30, 6:30, and then sleep until 9. This went on from about 4.5 months until now...although the last couple of nights seem to have been a little better. Know what gave me so much reassurance? On the mothering magazine webiste for this month there is an article about exactly that. Its called Sleep or Bedtime or something like that. It has given me so much peace. Essentially, it says that's NORMAL for babies, and that our society has placed unrealisitic expectations on our little ones. What ends up happening is mother's start resenting the time and think there is something wrong with them and thier baby, when really it's totally NORMAL. She says it much better than I do, though. If you have time, check it out, and just keep on keeping on! Try to enjoy the warm little body against yours as a special private moment (easier said than done for the 3rd time that night, I know.) Good Luck!

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Old 03-07-2007, 02:47 PM   #9
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I just wanted to second (third?) that the sleeping pattern is NORMAL, and that our family also found that co-sleeping was the best way to cope. Honestly, the only people I know who "supposedly" have babies this age who do sleep through the night are ones who are exclusively formula-feeding and have their babies on "schedules". (Not to say that's bad - we just don't do either of those things.)

And even then, I wonder if their babies really sleep through the night consistently or not...
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Old 03-07-2007, 03:52 PM   #10
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Sounds like my 5 month old. Cosleeping might help and make sure he is nursing enough when he does nurse. My little guy falls asleep and I have to roll him over to the other side to get him sucking again. The hard part I'm dealing with is he thinks 5am is a good time to get up for the day...
ummm, no...

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