Hi, I was wondering if anyone had advice, or had been in a similar situation. My 21 month old is still co-sleeping with me as she still asks to breastfeed anywhere from 4-10 times a night, depending on the night. I was ok with this up until recently but lately its turned me into a wreck. Now I feel like i'm done with breastfeeding on my part, as its exhausting me, and would like to wean her .. I think this will then lead to her being able to sleep through the night and sleep by herself. any advice? thankyou
Feeding that much in a night sounds exhausting, poor you. We had a similar situation although our ds was 14 months, not sure if this would make a difference? We just made changes gradually, which was less upsetting for both of us.
We put ds in his own room firstly, containing a cot and a bed. We made the room nice and made sure his favorite toys and teddies were in there too. DS and I would sleep in the bed, then once he was used to the room we put him in the cot, for his daytime sleep only to begin with, then at night with me sleeping in the bed in the same room. It was hard going for a few days but he did settle to waking about 3x a night. I found that even with this change I was sleeping lots better.
Then to get him sleeping through, I made sure he had plenty of exercise during the day, and a big bowl of milk and cereal such as instant oats for supper in case he was waking due to genuine hunger pangs. I used controlled crying then, but because I was in the room with him, he was never alone as such and would tend to settle quickly - I would never need to get out of bed and comfort him more than twice. We may have had an easier time of it because he had just started walking so was exhausting himself anyway.
Once he was sleeping through reliably, I moved back in with dh. I always make sure that he has his favorite teddy at the foot of his cot. Good luck with it, hopefully others will be along soon to say what worked for them, as I'm sure there are different ways to tackle this and you need to find a way that is best for you.
'I always make sure that he has his favorite teddy at the foot of his cot.'
That is ds, not dh!
And I meant to add, I thought we were done with BFing too, but now it has settled down to first thing in the morning and last thing before his bedtime, it is quite okay to cope with and doesn't make me feel drained.
thanks so much everyone for your input. flockwallpaper .. i'm laughing about the teddy comment! at the moment dd and i are in her room (have managed to at least move from dh & my room to hers) on the floor on a mattress .. not ideal .. but trying to get her used to her own room. we have tried to give her a big meal at night, but she often refuses a late meal (maybe because she's expecting to bf!!) fairmidden - thankyou, i'll have a look for that book. i feel like i missed the boat in a lot of ways and should have tackled this problem so much earlier, but here we are!
I had a similar thing with my DD. We started to offer her water instead of milk when she woke. I was really worried doing this at first, imagnining a complete nightmare of crying and yelling (she can be a stubborn sod... sorry, I mean independent minded little lovely). Actually she was fine after a few mins.
We did it over a few weeks, first one feed time, then the next, and as there was no milk, just boring old water, she started to sleep through.
MIght be worth a try.
I also had the No Cry Sleep solution book. Pretty good if you've got the patience, although I would say, No cry should probably be 'a little bit of crying, but not too bad sleep solution'
I understand your frustration with the night feeds. I just started weaning dd recently at about 15 months. I agonized so long about whether I should wait for 'self-weaning', and was terrifed at the prospect of controlled crying. I read no-cry sleep, but to be honest none of the solutions worked for my little breast-addict (also fed up to 10 times a night). Dh convinced me to wean, and I'm glad he did. we went cold-turkey, I just explained "no more milk" when she asked by gesture. We both lay on our bed with her and let her sleep inbetween us. She cried a little, but not much and started sleeping better RIGHT AWAY! woke only once by second night.
Good luck with yours. some people say offer snack, even in middle of night if nothing else works.