How early did you feel ready to leave your baby overnight?

(41 Posts)
ovenbun Thu 27-Feb-14 08:26:01

Not a judgemental question, I am expecting, and my friend gets married when the baby will be around 4 months old.
She is being amazing and not pressurising but ideally she would like me to stay with her the night before the wedding, as I'm MoH part of me would really like to be there for her at this special time, I haven't committed as yet as I'm just not sure if I'll feel ready to leave my baby. I don't want to be a PITA as I know its so lovely to be asked to be a bridesmaid and I do want to help her out as much as I can.
I am hoping to breastfeed which adds another dimension, although I guess I can pump o/n if little one is happy bottle feeding.
Also during the day as both my husband and I are in the wedding party we wont be able to sit with baby or spend much time with them..in laws are invited so will be helping out with caring for them.

When did you feel ready to leave your baby overnight? What helped to prepare for this?

Sorry I do realise this is probably massively PFB smile

Eletheomel Thu 27-Feb-14 08:31:48

DS1 is 4 and I still haven't left him overnight (apart from when I had to go into hospital to have DS2) grin Different folks are ready for these things at different times, My sister left her daughter overnight at 4 weeks old - you just make the decision based on you and how comfortable you feel that your baby will be looked after :-)

DaenerysTargaryensDragonBaby Thu 27-Feb-14 08:31:54

We're going to an overnight wedding when DC is 2 months old, and we'll be away for two nights.

As long as they are with a loving caregiver, you are fine. Go and enjoy yourself!

At 4 months I was only ready to leave them for an afternoon and my boobs felt as though they would explode even doing that. DS was happy using a bottle but DD never did so expressing would have been no good. I didn't leave DS overnight till he was nearly 2 and only then to go into hospital to have DD. This is one of those questions where there is no right or wrong and everyone feels differently, unfortunately it's hard to predict how you will feel until baby arrives. Pre-birth I would have said these wedding plans would be fine, once DS came along I changed and I would have hated being away from him for so long at that stage.

I left mine overnight at 5 months and would have been ready earlier probably if the occasion had arisen. However I FF and I think that made a big difference. I have friends who BF and whose LO wouldn't ever take a bottle and they couldn't go away for the night til LO moved onto a cup and was eating proper meals ie nearly a year old.

I think it is realistic but you would have to introduce a bottle quite early on. Or could baby be brought to you for feeds if necessary?

ZuleikaD Thu 27-Feb-14 08:40:40

If you're breastfeeding you will find it very hard to express enough to deal with overnight feeds for a night. Not to be a rain-on-the-parader, but also 4 months is exactly when nights often get really bad as they go through the 16-week sleep regression. I don't know how much you know about feeding but when they're really hungry they can have a feed and be hungry again 20 minutes later. During the day your baby will definitely need quick and regular access to your boobs so you might want to bear that in mind as regards dresses. (I took DS2 in a sling at 4m to a cousin's wedding and wore a strapless dress that I could just wriggle down to feed him)

It might not be like that of course - your baby might feed every two hours like clockwork from day one (DD did this) and be sleeping through by 4 months. But that would be pretty unusual. Could you take the baby with you for the overnight visit?

I didn't leave any of my babies until they were sleeping through the night and then only with DH. Eldest is now 4 and still hasn't stayed overnight with anyone other than us - I know she's not ready.

ovenbun Thu 27-Feb-14 09:02:53

Thanks for all the advice so far smile

I think the dress is pretty perfect for feeding which is good, its one of those tie up stretchy multiway things so boobs should be easy to access which is fab, although I will have to chat with my friend about how she feels at me feeding at the top table and things or whether I should nip off to somewhere quieter. So much to think about!

I think having the baby stay at hers overnight two might be a bit tough for her if they kept waking...my husband will be staying with the groom so he is ruled out too..

One option might be to stay late in the evening with the baby, then to drop the baby at my inlaws in time for me to help with bride getting ready in the morning, I guess in the middle of the night my friend is unlikely to need me, and if she does she can ring, the other bridesmaids will be staying there which is good so it isn't a case of being alone if I cant be there..

so much to think about!

What about your bra, will the dress permit a nursing bra to be worn? I needed decent support while BF.

The stay late in the evening then go home with baby idea sounds like a good one. My DD was still feeding pretty well all evening at that point though, so that might limit what you can do.

mrsravelstein Thu 27-Feb-14 09:14:31

ds1 at about 9 months, with help from excellent ex-inlaws

ds2 at 2 years. dd not til she was 3. but mostly because didn't have any family able to help til they were bigger, and because both were breastfed til 14 months so couldn't have left them before then.

ChaffinchOfDoom Thu 27-Feb-14 09:20:28

I would be tempted to let the other bridesmaids do the overnight thing; you can visit the evening and be there bright and early on the day; I agree probably not the easiest idea to sleep at hers with baby in tow grin

I was bridesmaid for my sister whilst bf and they put these cup things into the chest area of the dress so any leaks wouldn't bugger up the silk

Chunderella Thu 27-Feb-14 09:22:59

It's just impossible to say beforehand. You have no idea how you'll feel and it's also going to depend on feeding and sleeping. Not just whether you bf or ff but how the baby settles, whether you're ok expressing etc.

I had nights in a different room of the same house to DD from early on, the first time was when she was a few days old so I could get some sleep. She was ff, so this was an option for us. But I didn't have a night away from her until a few weeks ago. She was 18 months, and I had to be away for two nights for work. To be honest I was dreading it and wasn't ready at all- I only went because there was no way round it. It was also hard with it being two nights and so far away, it would have been easier on both of us if our first night apart was with her just down the road and only for one night. But it was ok. I'm not going to do it again for a while, though.

Oh, we also have coslept since 7 months so that might make a difference.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 27-Feb-14 09:23:05

If you are BFing you will need the dress to be able to cover a decent bra, and also breast pads to catch leaks.

I was a BM when DS2 was 4 months old. It was hard work, I was there for my friend as much as I could be, but being a sensible woman she understood and absolutely expected that my baby would come first!

Why the fuck does she need you in the middle of the night?? The fuss people make about getting married is utterly bonkers.

I wouldn't sit at the top table if I were you - I didn't, in part because I would be BFing and didn't want to inadvertently show a nipple to the room grin

I'm guessing this is your first? When is the wedding? I really think you need to be realistic with yourself and your friend about what you can do.
If you aren't BFing then it is definitely going to be easier - depending on what kind of baby you have!!

CrispyCrochet Thu 27-Feb-14 09:23:12

I would guess this is going to be incredibly hard for you to know beforehand. You'll have to wait & see what sort of baby you will have. My DS is 11 weeks & stuck to me like velcro. I can hardly leave him for an hour with DH much less overnight with a grandparent. But then as some PP have said you might find it easy.

Expressing will be tough, I would suggest you get practiced early & pump little & often to build up a stash in the freezer. I'm BFing on demand & find it hard to pump more than about 1.5/2 ounces a day. So it could take me a week to pump enough to last DS all night (not to mention you'll probably need to bring your pump to bride's house as you could potentially get engorged).

I think maybe make a few tentative plans but ultimately you'll have to wait & see.

Congratulations btw. If you'd like to scare yourself you can go read my AIBU post regarding newborns. wink

ovenbun Thu 27-Feb-14 09:28:26

The dress can be tied lots of different ways so can hide a nursing bra if needed.

I think the staying late/visiting early option will probably be easiest...just have to see what the little monster is like when they arrive I guess smile

for the evening of the wedding we are going to book a hotel room so me or dh can have somewhere to go with baby if needed smile

CrispyCrochet Thu 27-Feb-14 09:32:37

Sounds like you are being practical & realistic.

Good luck. I hope it all works out for you.

Cosmo89 Thu 27-Feb-14 09:36:22

I would tell your friend that you couldn't make any firm decisions until after you've settled down with the baby, know what they're like, but also assessed early years motherhood from your own point of view.
Of course, assume that you won't/can't leave them- but do NOT beat yourself up if you find yourself, 4 months in, skipping off sans Baby with a smile on your face and having a ball on your first solo time for 4 months.... Not to mention the prospect of a full nights sleep. My first night away was when DS was nearly 6 mo - had it not been for a funeral would have loved the time away.....

joosiewoosie Thu 27-Feb-14 09:42:23

My dd is 19 months old, and I still haven't left her overnight.

Only last month, we went to a matinee of a west end show and left her with her aunty from 10.30am til 7 at night, for the first time since she's been born.

People can judge all they like. I don't care. We are happy and will do things when we are ready!

If it's right for you, it's right. Full stop. If anyone judges, it's because they need to because it's how they work. It means nothing about you, so should mean nothing to you.

Most of all, enjoy your child! They are not little for very long at all! X

Cosmo89 Thu 27-Feb-14 12:59:11

It seems everyone feels judged! Both for leaving and not leaving. I think the central message is to wait and see what is right for you- to hell with what anyone else thinks x

whatsagoodusername Thu 27-Feb-14 13:15:53

At about 6 weeks. We were visiting my mother, had been there almost two weeks so he was used to being there. We snuck off to a hotel for a night and slept and slept and slept. It was lovely.

Theyaremysunshine Thu 27-Feb-14 13:23:40

Yes, just wait and see. I have friends and family who have left dc earlier than that, they had the type that slept all night and settled with anyone.

Me, I left DS first at 7m for work overnight. He and his sister were Velcro, refluxy babies. DS woke every 45 mins for 5 months. The concept of going to a wedding for even a couple of hours would have been beyond me at 4m. I felt horrific, tbh. They completely bottle refused (I tried everything) and I had to wait til they got the hang of a cup. This is extreme though.

You sound v realistic. Ignore the first 6 weeks which are a bit of a blur for most people, and then see how you feel. So much can change in 4 months.

Eh? I certainly don't feel judged. I can't see any posts where anyone has said anything judgey or that they have been judged. That wasn't the question, the question was about the practicalities of it and whether people felt ready for it themselves at the same time in their babies lives.

ZuleikaD Thu 27-Feb-14 14:04:47

I agree with WhoKnows - I don't think anyone's been remotely judgmental. Who are you talking about, Cosmo?

Cosmo89 Thu 27-Feb-14 23:28:06

I was talking about joosie and myself - who both obviously feel judged, even of we choose to ignore it.
You're misinterpreting my post

Cosmo89 Thu 27-Feb-14 23:35:34

..., sent too soon....

I wasn't thing about mumsnet, more RL. Joosie, from her post, sounds like she feels judged but chooses to steer her own ship. I feel the same. We both had very different experiences inestimable our DC. Neither is 'right' - we just did what we needed to do. And screw everyone else.
And - yes- I have blatantly been judged in RL for leaving my DC for a night when he was 6mo - and working away for weekly stretches at a time since he was 10mo. Just like the people who judge mums for NOT leaving their children, those people didn't know what they were talking about and I chose to ignore them

Cosmo89 Thu 27-Feb-14 23:36:12

For in estimable read in leaving
Stupid iphone

Smerlin Thu 27-Feb-14 23:43:26

We have left our baby overnight once at 3 months with my MIL and she was absolutely fine. Your parents or your in-laws have brought up children of their own and (should!) know what they're doing!

With BF it does depend though - a friend of mine hasn't even managed a couple of hours away fr her baby as she is a bottle refuser.

Also if you're anything like me, you will NEED that pump in the middle of the night to stop boobs being in agony!

minipie Thu 27-Feb-14 23:49:37

Still not left dd overnight at 16 months, mind you we've not had anything we've really needed to leave her for (no weddings). She's an unreliable sleeper so feel a bit nervous about leaving her with anyone. More for their sake than for hers!

GeorgieWilson Fri 28-Feb-14 00:09:49

I would say just wait and see. I left my ds overnight at grandparents at 3 weeks. He was ebf, took the bottle no problem and I had no issues expressing enough for him for 18 hours. I went to a fancy work do and expressed before, after and in the morning all fine. So it can be done though I appreciate every baby is different

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Fri 28-Feb-14 06:46:19

About two months. It's far easier then than later when they start to get clingy.
For us, it's really important to spend a night or two without dd at least a few times a year. It keeps our couple life strong.
Different for different people though but there's nothing to feel guilty about.

Gerty1002 Fri 28-Feb-14 08:24:09

I left DS once at 4 months overnight and will be again tomorrow at 6 months. My DM literally lives ten steps around the corner though, which makes it easier. I'm not bf though so slightly different situation. You can never predict how you will feel, I never thought I'd be so worried leaving him with people other than my DP and DM but it fills me with dread.

ovenbun Fri 28-Feb-14 08:36:45

Thanks for all the tips, I have got a portable pump so pumping is an option...if I can..
I have told friend if I do leave them I will male sure I do a practice night before at some point so that she doesn't have to cope with me being anxious on her night. My gut feeling is that it's not going to work but we will see, I could really need a night off by then smile

EmpireBiscuit Fri 28-Feb-14 08:38:48

Tonight's the first night - he's 13 months.

Ragwort Fri 28-Feb-14 08:42:36

I don't think it matters what anyone else does, the thing is to do what is right for you. I would have left my baby very happily if I'd had anyone close to leave him with grin. I mix fed so that wouldn't have been an issue - I did leave him for an evening at 6 days when my mother was staying and I was 'judged' for that. Not that other people's opinion bothered me.

My closest friend has never left her children overnight - they are 11 and 9 - just do what right's for you and your situation.

HelenHen Fri 28-Feb-14 11:22:27

I think we left him overnight at about 4 months... I can't really remember... But at that point he was almost sleeping during the night. I breastfed too but gave a bottle of formula before bed.

As most people say though you absolutely cannot plan this. You've No reason to fear sitting at the top table though. Most venues would have room you could use. If you're not comfortable feeding at top table, you won't be at any other table.

Could you invite her to stay with you the night before? And plan a few surprises and some pampering? Sounds like she will be understanding either way!

jellyandcake Fri 28-Feb-14 11:28:45

18mo. Wasn't ready before then and wouldn't have done it by choice even then. He was a bottle refuser so wouldhave been absolutely impossible until about a year anyway.

But I didn't leave him for any period of time except a 20min smear test until he was 6mo - just didn't want to!

mycatlikestwiglets Fri 28-Feb-14 15:23:34

DD is 4mo and I wouldn't, but only because she is EBF, won't take a bottle and still feeds every 3 hours at night. With DS I would have as he slept through from about 10wo. Every baby is different so you really do need to wait and see how your baby is and how you feel nearer the time.

lynniep Fri 28-Feb-14 15:28:37

Honestly, its so difficult to say. I could have left DS1 overnight straight away, but he wasn't ready for me to leave him overnight! I did go out overnight when he was about 4 or 5 months, for a hen party. I mix fed him so he was already used to bottles. I ended up leaving at 4am because my breasts were so engorged I couldn't stand it. Good job I'd only had a few drinks!

DefiniteMaybe Fri 28-Feb-14 15:29:51

Dd has just had her first night away from me, she's 2 and a half but only recently stopped bf. Ds stopped bf at 4 months and had his first night away at 5 months.

ksrwr Fri 28-Feb-14 15:32:44

it was 4 months for me... same as you - for a wedding

FlossieTreadlight Fri 28-Feb-14 15:39:39

4 months - for a hen do then at 5 months for the wedding. God I loved it smile

ILoveCwtches Fri 28-Feb-14 16:19:08

I was bridesmaid twice when dd was v little. Once at 4mo and again at 5mo.

The first time, the bride had a baby 5 weeks older than dd but we both did things differently. She expressed enough for the day and her family fed her ds. Dd is a bottle refuser so I kept sneaking off to a side room to feed her as I had to pull dress right down to feed her. I sat on top table and tbh DP spent most of time pushing her round the grounds, rather than sitting at his table with her.

We (dp, dd & I) stayed with bride, the night before, as huge house, 5hr drive & she insisted as it would save us money. I couldn't have left dd overnight for two nights (still haven't left her overnight, at all and she's 10mo).

For the second wedding, the plan was for us to drive down (2hr drive) on morning of wedding, despite other bridesmaids staying in hotel with the bride, the night before. I knew before dd was here that I didn't want the pressure of working round bf, overnight. Dd was supposed to spend day with DP's sister and we'd drive home in early eve.

That all went pearshaped when dd decided she hated the bottle. We ended up taking dd (to a childfree wedding). The bride was brilliant about it. I'd arranged with one of the other bridesmaids, that DP & dd would spend day around and about the venue and I'd use her room to feed/change dd, before I told the bride that dd would have to come. The bride said not to be daft and had a place set for dd, at our table. I just snuck off to feed her, as dress again, needed pulling right down.

Didn't mean that to be so long, but wanted to show different approaches and that plans can easily go out of the window.

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