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How to stop Breast feeding my 14 month old...is it just to make him go cold turkey!

(12 Posts)
pebbles1234 Mon 25-Jul-11 14:25:25

I've been happily feeding for the past 14months, but my little one has never yet slept through the night - he can settle himself (with a few tears) when I put him down at bedtime but if he wakes in the night the only thing that will settle him is a feed and now I'm back at work (albeit part time) I'm finding it really hard going, as sometimes he wakes 5/6 times a night...We have tried controlled crying previously and that got him to settle at bedtime but in the night there is no consoling him. My husband thinks the best thing is to stop altogether, but whilst there is lots of info to tell you how to start BF there is little to tell you the best way to withdraw it...any ideas anyone?

startail Mon 25-Jul-11 14:33:23

DH does the settling in the night, no breast milk available smile

Moulesfrites Mon 25-Jul-11 14:35:42

Could you try offering water? I don't know really, my ds is only 6 mo and I feed him to sleep every night and am already wondering how I will ever be able to stop!

RitaMorgan Mon 25-Jul-11 14:38:00

We went through a phase of DP doing all the settling at night, offering water and cuddles. If I was there DS wanted milk, but he soon started accepting cuddles from DP if I wasn't there. After a while it got to the point where DS didn't need/expect bfing to settle in the night and now I can settle him without feeding too.

mybrainsthinkingfuckyou Mon 25-Jul-11 14:54:32

Cold turkey with a hardy relative who doesn't have to work next day and can bear the crying - they offer him cows milk/follow on milk during day and diluted juices - then milky drink or fruit/herbal/black tea before teeth brushing, hugs and water overnight/warm drink if they're soft.
The longer the better - we did six days - and will still reach for you/lift your T shirt on your return (your milk may still not have dried up at this point) which is when you have to be really strong as your instinct will be to nurse him 'one last time' - do try not to but if you do it may still pan out if you go back to above routine (fed mine once after 6 days when she fell over - i know - but then stuck to guns and just stroked her head at night. Had DH next to her as main co-sleeper as she had been used to rolling to me and latching herself on at night - i know.

Good luck sweetie - you need your rest now and your body back. I went back to work after a year and was a zombie for the next 15 months as madam wouldn't give up by herself and despite no pumping /expressing and 9 hour shifts between drop off and pick up feeding the milk was still flowing: eventually at 2 yrs 3 mths I did cold turkey, should have done it sooner? The link between nursing and going back to sleep was a strong habit to break. We didn't break the co-sleeping habit til she was 4!

pebbles1234 Mon 25-Jul-11 15:13:54

Thank you for your posts - mybrainsthinkingfuckyou the thought of my milk drying up fills me with terror! he's always been so affectionate and his 'drink' with mummy has been a special time, think one of the reasons havent done it sooner is am worried he wont want mama anymore! (i'm such a wuss!)blush but really need to do it soon, am knackered!

Pebbles I really feel for you, my DS is 14 mo and was exactly the same until 6.5 months so I know how hard it is. What turned it around for us was taking him to a cranial osteopath who specialises in children. A few friends had taken dc's for various probs (colic, sleeping) and advised it was worth a try. I took DS to one appt and that night he slept all the way through from about 10 till 7. I had made another two appts a week apart but cancelled the last one because we really didn't need it. DS does feed to sleep but goes down at about 8.30 until 6.30 each night and was noticeably happier lying down after the second session. If you live in the West Mids I can give you some contact details.

Nearly forgot to add that despite having a '1 HR feed/1hr sleep' pattern, my DS didn't actually need the milk during the night at that age, it was just a comfort thing. Ignoring him didn't work, Daddy didn't work, the only thing that worked was removing the 'uncomfortableness' which woke him up and stopped him settling back down himself.

MigGril Mon 25-Jul-11 21:06:35

You shouldn't go cold truky if you do you'll need express for comfort espcialy if he's feeding that much in one day.

I'd try night weaning first, www.kellymom.com/bf/weaning/weaning-night.html you don't have to stop altogether to do this.

TruthSweet Mon 25-Jul-11 22:13:39

Night weaning is perfectly possible, we did the 'Daddy and a water beaker' version with DD1 at 12m and it took a few nights (but she was having a lot of solids during the day [3 course breakfasts, lunch, tea, supper and 3-4 snacks] and 8+ bfs too).

We didn't bother with DD2 or DD3 though. DD2 night weaned herself at 16m and DD3 is pretty much night weaned at 21m in that most of the time if she wakes Daddy will do but on occasions she needs me (and sometimes to nurse) to get back to sleep.

Going cold turkey would quite likely be distressing for you, your baby and your body so perhaps try other things before going down that route.

TheRealMBJ Mon 25-Jul-11 22:27:00

We really struggled to try and night wean DS at 15 months and seriously considered CC. Luckily we didn't do it, because with a bit of patience and gentle 'nudging' he is now completely night weaned at 18 months. He still wakes up, but settles easily without a feed and no longer requests it, whereas 1.5 months ago would scream (and I mean scream inconsolably) in distress if I refused to feed him.

Read Dr Jay's method before you decide to cut him off completely as you might prefer to try it (and as it happens we did a sort of modified, gentler version of this)

Good luck.

AngelDog Mon 25-Jul-11 22:31:31

Agree with TruthSweet.

DS was waking (& feeding) 3-5 times a night at 13 months. At various points prior to that I worked on not feeding him every time he woke at night, with a fair amount of success. The result was that he woke just as often but needed 5-20 mins of being rocked rather than 2-5 mins of feeding to get him back to sleep. I always went back to feeding every time he woke as I just couldn't cope with having to get out of bed for that long so often each night.

At 14 months he suddenly started waking only once a night (at my bedtime) which has continued for the last 4 months. (We co-sleep so I tend to disturb him when I go to bed.) I didn't do anything other than keep feeding him to sleep and feeding him every time he woke. Now at 18 m.o. he sleeps through occasionally.

TruthSweet Mon 25-Jul-11 22:38:33

I should have said that DD3 sleeps 7-6 most nights but does have the occasional blip! I read it back and it sounds like she is up all night, every night (that's just last night when she had a cold and fever).

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