How do I stop infant from using me as a pacifier?

Shante' - posted on 11/02/2011 ( 11 moms have responded )

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My 6 month old nurses several times a day which I know is normal but is using me as a pacifier also normal. He will very rarely take a bottle but refuses to take a pacifier. He wants me to nurse him to sleep and if I don't he just cries. How do I get him to stop using me as a pacifier to go to sleep?

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Lydia - posted on 07/26/2012

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I know this is an old post. But when did it stop for you guys. My daughter is 10 months and Co sleeps with us and uses me as a pacifier. When can I look forward to her not needing me all the time at night. Dont get me wrong I love breastfeeding my daughter, but I dislike waking up every morning with a sore back BC I cant ever sleep comfortable. Lol

Laura - posted on 07/28/2012

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It's obvious your child needs comforting to fall asleep with you but that is completely normal. Your baby is only six months old. It's wonderful he/she loves to snuggle with you before falling asleep. You said your husband can put him to sleep by rocking him so don't worry. Your child will not nurse forever I promise so whatever habits he is forming right now, he will definitely outgrow. I loved the time I spent nursing my daughter down to sleep. I am a big believer in child led weaning so I patiently waited until she didn't need me so much. Around 12-18 months she outgrew all feedings except for naptime and bedtime. Then she stopped needing it before sleeping all together. I nursed her until just before she turned three. She slowed down around 18 months but I let her decide when she didn't need it anymore and it worked out wonderfully.

They are only little once so my advice is enjoy it and don't worry so much. This is not a lifelong habit. Some babies just need extra comforting. I can almost guarantee you will miss the cuddle and snuggle time when they outgrow it and they will outgrow it.

Christina - posted on 11/02/2011

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My sister in law was asked if she used a soother for her 10month old daughter, her response was perfect I thought - "isn't that what I'm for?" I have never used a soother for my 2 children 2.5, and 1yr, they did/do use breastfeeding as a comfort (soother) but I have never had a problem with it. Breastfeeding is not just about nutrition, it is about everything else too!

Jasmine - posted on 11/05/2011

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It took him a while to do it because he always sleeped latched to me, but I slowly started unlatching sooner and sooner and eventually he got to a point where he would just go to sleep on his own.

Jasmine - posted on 11/05/2011

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My son do the same thing. I found out once he goes to sleep I would unlatch him quick and when he start cryin I would put him on his stomach and rub his back till he goes back to sleep. It worked for a week with him because I didnt want him to get in that habit too. Now hes at the point where if hes full he would go to sleep in his crib just by me laying him in there and leaving. To me its amazing how quick babies adjust to new things, like sleeping arrangements.

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User - posted on 07/27/2012

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unfortunately, my pedi said there's not much you can do about it if you can't get them to take a pacifier. it's comfort nursing. my 4 month old has starting doing it less unless she is overstimulated or doesn't feel well. i started nursing her at night until right before she is completely asleep and then putting her in her crib with her lights/music mobile. she talks herself to sleep. also, a massage at night with lavender calming baby lotion (i use aveeno) has helped her sleep longer and be more relaxed. read up on infant massage. it's a different comfort and may help.

Shante' - posted on 11/05/2011

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@Aniesha.. Lol I've tried that too. It worked once.
@Jasmine I wish my son would go to sleep on his own he fights me like crazy. I'm gonna keep trying though. Thanx

Aniesha - posted on 11/03/2011

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No idea, my son did the same thing to me! Eventually he would fall asleep with a bottle, so I'd breastfeed him to sleep, then when I'd move him, I'd replace boob with bottle, lol.

Hannah - posted on 11/03/2011

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I know how you feel Shante, I thought the same once, but over time I came to accept that this was just the way it was going to be for me and my family. I found it easier to go with than to fight! I know it is in a way a 'bad habit', but I found they can get to sleep on their own if needs must, but if I am at home it's just easiest to do it myself. It has been a chore at times, but it has benefits too. Hope some other mums have some actual tips for you!

Shante' - posted on 11/02/2011

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I love the bond we have but he won't let me put him to sleep unless I nurse him. His dad can put him to sleep with just rocking but he doesn't accept that from me. I don't want to form bad habits and get him where no one can get him to sleep except me.

Hannah - posted on 11/02/2011

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I would say that although this is sometimes not ideal, it is absolutely normal! And also part of the lovely bond you get through breastfeeding. My little one never took a bottle, or pacifier, and still nurses to sleep t the age of 2, but she CAN get to sleep without me when she needs to, she just knows what she likes!
Nursing to sleep is the easiest way to get them to go to bed, and personally I haven't found it to be a problem (although I know other mums have). Are you finding it a problem, or are you worrying about forming a bad habit? If it works for you then I'd say don't worry, there is still plenty of time to change routine and wean later on :)

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