HELP! Night Weaning 19 month old and need your tips!

Jessica - posted on 09/05/2016 ( 4 moms have responded )

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We are night weaning our 19 month old son and we need some tips from others who have been in our shoes! I have been exclusively nursing my son back to sleep and he still regularly wakes up 3 times per night. I've reached my end point of nursing at night. I am continuing with daytime nursing.

The first night went pretty okay... His dad got up with him and he cried for like 10 minutes, but then just conked out for the rest of the night.

Last night was a freaking sad nightmare. He woke up and put up the worst fight to his dad, screaming and kicking. I took over at like the 15 minute mark and while he was initially comforted, he then built to an even worse crescendo of the saddest cries when he realized I really wasn't going to nurse him.

Since he was in such a state, I wanted to calm him down without nursing. I turned on his favorite tv show in the living room and we laid on the couch together in the otherwise dark room until he fell asleep on my chest about an hour later. I carried him back to his bed and he slept the rest of the night.

On the positive side, I think he is vaguely figuring out that we're not nursing at night anymore. When we were laying on the couch in the middle of the night, he didn't ask for milk. On the other hand, I don't want to make watching an hour of TV at 2AM a trend. Not sustainable.

Those of you who did night weaning while still nursing during the day, what helped?

My little guy has a hoarse voice today from crying so much last night. :(

I've also realized that I have like no skills at getting him to fall asleep without nursing anymore, since I haven't used any other way in months, even for naps. He's too big to rock in my arms. Oh, and he sleeps in a floor bed (montessori thing), so there's no setting him in a crib and walking away to see if he can settle himself.

How do y'all get your babes back to sleep!?

Any help is appreciated! We're ALL exhausted.

(Cross-posted in Breastfeeding Moms group)

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Sarah - posted on 09/06/2016

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Well I quit the day first and let her nurse at bedtime for a few more weeks. What did help is I changed her night routine. She used to bathe and brush teeth, snuggle for books and then nurse. We switched to a snack, then bath and brush teeth and then she got to pick extra books. Then I would cuddle her and rock her. Every now and again she'd tug at my shirt and I'd say "sorry, no more" she hang her head and it was heartbreaking. If she woke during the night, then I would let her nurse a bit and she gave that up on her own. She was my last and she would have nursed til 3, and I guess there is nothing wrong with that, I was just ready to be done. She took it pretty well.
Just stick to your guns, keep laying him back down and tell him he can have a cup of water and a hug. He'll get there sooner than you think.

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Jessica - posted on 09/05/2016

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I appreciate your sympathy!!! It feels very lonely for us to do this sad middle of the night crying circus.

How did your little one take it when you stopped night nursing? Fight it or kinda just surrender?

I know the night crying won't go on forever, but I have no clue when the end will be! A week? A few days?

Sarah - posted on 09/05/2016

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You sound a lot like me. My breasts were like a magic wand! I could fix anything by offering to nurse. I weaned, at 2, day first and then night. I wish I had more to offer than my sympathy; but I really don't know how we did it!

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