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Old 10-01-2011, 10:03 AM   #1
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7mo Sleep Trouble

We co-sleep and breastfeed, which has led us to the common problem of my daughter requiring nursing every time she wakes. On good nights, this is maybe 3x. On bad nights, it's every hour. Her sleep is much, MUCH better on the days she naps, but she won't nap without me lying on my side next to her, more or less nursing her The. Whole. Time. I am committed to breastfeeding, but I have grown to HATE the feeling of the non-nutritive sucking (the sucking she does when she's not eating). It makes me want to scream. It makes me want to grab my breast out of her mouth. It makes me want to wean. I don't want to feel this way. I treasure our breastfeeding relationship and would love to see it last for several more years. However, while I have the luxury of working from home many days a week, I can't always take the time to do nothing but lie on my side and nurse her for an hour and a half to two hours a day. Consequently, she gets nursed down and then I sit up to do some work...and she sleeps for 45 minutes and wakes up. Then nights are worse. She is sleeping nowhere NEAR enough. She's almost narcoleptic during the day, falling asleep at odd times in the car seat, etc, and sleeping for only 10 minutes or so. I need her to nap so she'll sleep better at night, I need her to sleep better at night so she'll nap. But I need her to nap without doing this obnoxious, fluttering sucking the whole time, because it is making me resentful (and it makes my nipples sore).

-We've tried the "No Cry Sleep Soln"; the thing where you pull the nipple out of the mouth generally doesn't work. When it does, it works for about 5 minutes, and then she's groping for the nipple again. I've been working on this for MONTHS with no success.

-I am not willing to CIO

-I've tried creating a lovey, letting her cry in arms, giving a paci (she plays with it during the day, but it makes her scream at night)

-I've tried white noise, rocking, having her sleep next to daddy (incidentally, I'm the only one available to do naps)

-I've looked at other gentle sleep books, but can't find any other than Sears or Pantley that would work for a bfing/cosleeping family. Sears doesn't address the constant, ceaseless sucking issue.

Please help. I just need my baby to take naps. I'm worried for me (I'm a zombie, I'm no fun, and I think my daytime parenting is starting to suffer), I'm worried for her (she needs sleep to develop normally!), and I'm worried for our breastfeeding relationship!


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Old 10-01-2011, 11:10 AM   #2
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Re: 7mo Sleep Trouble

I just wanted to offer some hugs! My ds is 7m. I had to get him out of my bed. He is still in my room in his pack n play so i can hear when he wakes up but he isnt searching for me all night now. Babies are hard work without extra sleep issues. Good luck mama!
Mama to N (8/02), L (12/06) and P (2/11)
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Old 10-01-2011, 02:26 PM   #3
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I find my DD will sleep with my boob in her mouth all night, but if I can lay her down in her crib she'll sleep 4-6 hours and be fine. No advice on getting to that point though....
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Old 10-01-2011, 03:12 PM   #4
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I could have written this post! In fact, I am sitting in a chair right this moment with ds doing that flutter suck thing and it's about to drive me up the wall! He'll start to nod off more and then dive bomb again for the boob again.

And currently DH is helping our 4 yo who just had diarrhea all over the bathroom floor, and our 6 yo who is acting up and is in his room crying and whining.

I feel bad that I can't help him but if I stand up to put baby down he'll wake up. He was up at 8am and finally fell asleep at 1pm and has been sleeping an hour and a half. DH held him first and when we switched, he started to stir. The paci wouldn't cut it so I let him nurse.

I'm looking for an answer too! But, know you're not alone!
Caroline-happily married to Keith since 4/27/02; momma to D (5/10/05), M (2/10/07) and S (3/25/11)
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Old 10-01-2011, 05:58 PM   #5
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When I lay my DD down I will put her down on her side and wait til the last possible second to unlatch her. I also hold her very close and tight until she's on the mattress...don't know if that helps. With DD1 I used to have to lay her on the mattress but not remove my arms right away if that makes sense....
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Old 10-01-2011, 07:33 PM   #6
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Re: 7mo Sleep Trouble

all I can say is DS1 did that until 16, yes SIXTEEN months. I had awful feelings towards him for it. I really hated nursing, but didn't want to stop because it was just obvious that he needed that comfort from me, and heck, that was my job after I let him continue until I got preggo again, and started feeling like I was wanted to throw him. I NEVER did, of course, but I know you can relate!
It's their personality. It was VERY hard to wean would take all my willpower not to give in and nurse him. I had to nightwean him (still let him nurse whenever during the day) And then I worked on naptime weaning, but I STILL had to sleep with him forever.
Sometimes I still do, and now it's the newbie 5 month latched on. lol.
I could NOT do that w/the 5 month old at night. Once he's asleep I unlatch him and put him in his carseat. (BAD...he refuses to sleep in the P&P, and that transition will have to come soon, but he has reflux. It's also where he slept best, and like I said, I couldn't have him on me all night.)
Will your LO take a bottle?? Can you nightwean one feeding at a time?? It'll mean less sleep for you for awhile, and him too, but then he'll realize he's not going to nurse at night. (Of course, only if he's eating solids.)
mama to three sweet, rough & tumble boys who always keep me on my feet:
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