Tips for making stopping BF my 2yo stress-free for both of us?(6 Posts)
I am in the early stages of pregnancy with DC2 and have decided to stop BF my DS. He will be 2 at the end of this month. We are off for a weeks holiday just after his birthday and when we come back home I'm planning to stop.
For the last few months he has only had milk before bed and, most nights, a feed around 4-5am which (usually) puts him back to sleep until a relatively civilised hour.
I don't think the lack of milk per se is going to be too much of a battle, but I would really like to hear some ideas about how I can retrain a 2 year old to wind down and relax without BF. It has been the last thing he does before sleep every night of his life, and although he isn't fast asleep when he goes in his cot is is very drowsy and relaxed and only a little wiggle away from getting comfortable and dropping off. Bedtime routines currently goes - bath, pyjamas, two stories with daddy, milk with mummy, sleep.
Also, how the hell am I going to adjust to the 5am starts??? He is really quite alert when he wakes at this hour and without the soporific influence of BF I am really not hopeful about persuading him back to sleep.
I'm very interested in hearing the experiences of others who've cut out bedtime BF with their toddlers!
One thing that helped for us was doing 'count to 10' while I was pregnant with DS2. I explained to DS1 that he could have milk while I counted to 10 and I would have a sippy cup of water for him to have after. If I was feeling patient or he clearly needed the comfort then I could count to 10 really slowly, but as we started to cut down I could do it quicker, or if really feeling like I'd had enough then sometimes count really fast!
The other thing which helped at bedtime I think was getting his dad to do bedtime (this did sometime involve me pretending to go out then sneaking back into the house after they'd gone upstairs).
5am starts with a 2 year old not sure I can help much as they're pretty common and I do recall having a fairly in depth knowledge of 'Farming Today' from too many early starts at one stage....
I replaced my DS1's feeds with cuddles and story - his last one was a morning one though.
I think the bedtime one was just replaced with a cup of cow's milk (sometimes he wanted it, sometimes not) and more stories!
I didn't actually mean to wean mine at 2, I was just trying to get pg again.
I'm going through this with my 22mo at the moment and I'm down to just morning feeds at the moment. I've been dropping one feed at a time. Now at bedtime we (DH, DD and I) do cows' milk, cuddles and stories and then DH says good night and goes and then I cuddle her, rock her a little and sing her a song.
She asked for 'booby' a few nights but seems happy with milk and we let her 'help' fill up her cup so she is involved. She then drinks it when we read her stories.
For nap time I've only done a couple (work full time so it's only at weekends) but basically do a similar but shortened routine, or time it so we are out in the car when she needs a sleep! It's a lot easier....
The trick with my DD is to not say 'no' but give her an alternative that sounds like it's much better so milk in a cup which she gets to help pour etc is much more exciting than 'booby'!
I am going to keep on with the morning feed for a while as she loves it, but it's so nice not to have her pawing at me all day when I'm at home now - sometimes she wanted to feed all day when I was home and would tweak my nipples which hurt!
cuddles and a lovely cup of warm (cow's) milk. And a bedtime story. Job done... I think cuddles can give the same hormones (oxytocin) so definitely worth doing as part of the routine. If you are really positive about it he will follow suit after perhaps a few days of protest when you have to be strong- I quit at 18 months and it was pretty simple really. Also the 5am wake up will be habit, DD did this until 15/16 months and then I was strict Mummy, did the pick up, put down, leave the room and she would sleep until 6 and then 7.
Thanks for your replies and apologies for the delay in responding. I think dim lighting and cuddles is the way forward, I think. Wish me luck...
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