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Is it poss to night wean but still cosleep? Should she be self settling??

(12 Posts)
SquidgersMummy Fri 10-May-13 21:26:22

DD is 9mths, ebf, doing well with her weaning but milk def still her main food, as it should be. We cosleep, she feeds to sleep at night and for all naps. She naps on me or in the pram or car. Never taken to a dummy. She has never slept thru: she used to sleep in the attached cot and just wake for feeds then she developed eczema and went thru the 4mth sleep regression and net result is she sleeps cuddled up to me - I can't really leave once she's asleep but as she's usually up till 8.30 and then up, albeit briefly, a good 4-8 times a night, I have been ok with the enforced early bedtime. I love cosleeping but I have to concede she has no ability to self settle, and unless in the pram or car can't go to sleep without me. She wakes a lot in the night - usually because she is itchy which is not her fault - but she needs booby to get back off again. If I were a few years younger all this would be fine but I'm 38 this year and we'd like another DC. No periods yet or chance to drift over to DHs side of the bed either! I think I'd like to keep bfing until she's 1, and I'll have to go back to work PT then too, so wondered if night weaning would be a good start at helping her self settle a bit more. I feel bad about it all hmm She loves bfing but I am starting to think her inability to fall asleep without booby is something I've got wrong IYSWIM. I just keep hoping she'll suddenly eat more and self wean but realistically I don't think that's going to happen. So what do you think I should try?? Thanks XX

AliceWChild Fri 10-May-13 21:34:03

I'm similar although am just starting to wean him off needing me to sleep. I now feed him to sleep, then wait till he's properly asleep then sneak out. He's made a lot of progress and now sometimes stirs when I leave but settles back down, and I've heard him on the monitor settle back down. I didn't do anything special, just started to leave him when he was sleeping till he got more used to it. Next step will be to put him down to sleep but we're taking it slow. He's starting to eat at the moment too. Don't know if any of that is at all helpful.

glorious Sat 11-May-13 06:04:11

I don't know the answer about night weaning as such but I just read The No Cry Sleep Solution which includes ideas for reducing night waking in cosleeping babies (without stopping bf or cosleeping). Might be worth a go?

SquidgersMummy Sun 12-May-13 18:55:08

Hi Alice and Glorious, thanks, nice to know we're not alone...I'll check the Baby Whisperer book out - actually I'll have a look in the library, I bet there's a few tips across the favourite books around. Thanks xx

MissingMyMarbles Mon 13-May-13 18:48:32

Glad I found this thread. My baby is 10 months and still feeds 2-3 x at night. We don't co-sleep now but I would love to night wean. Her 1st night feed is now a bottle of formula (I struggled to come to terms with that but for ys it was a necessary evil) as I am back at work (predominantly nights) and DH had to be able to feed her somehow and I didn't express for various reasons. I'm glad we're not alone as I have had a rubbish day today (am knackered from work and haven't been able to put Velcro baby down today let alone leave the room, and DD1 has been off school sick) and was starting to feel like I'd brought the non-sleeping-thru on myself grin

SquidgersMummy Mon 13-May-13 21:23:55

Hi Marbles, welcome! Sounds like you've had a tough day, here: brew. Hope your DCs are sound asleep. I spend hours thinking we've done it wrong but it's a bit pointless...she does sleep and there are plenty of people on here with babies who don't! I'm still faffing wondering how we can sort it out and how I'll get back to work. Being more organised re 3 meals and 2 snacks and think I need to actually count how many night feeds she has, beginning to wonder if she has more overnight....that's as far as we've got. I was so worried about being able to BF, and it truly has been a beautiful, wonderful thing, but no one tells you you should worry more about how you'll ever get them off it do they!! grin

slightlysoupstained Tue 14-May-13 15:11:05

No answers but will be watching this thread. If it's any consolation, DS used to quite happily go to sleep w/o feeding (at least for the morning nap) - I'd just put him down, he'd babble to himself for a while (or occasionally grumble a bit) and within ten minutes or so he'd be happily asleep. Now he's nearly nine months and I'm back to work soon, he seems to have forgotten how to settle himself! angry sad So even if you'd thought you were getting it "right" earlier on, they still reserve the right to change their minds...

Either pram or feed to sleep (currently typing this with him on my lap as I can't even put him down once asleep for a nap now - that was fine a few weeks ago hmm ). We've been trying to get him to sleep in cot at night - started with it pushed up against the bed, now has side on but still next to bed. He might sleep in there for a short while but then rolls right up to the bars, sticks his little arms through pathetically, and will eventually wake up and start sobbing. At which point he ends up back in bed with us...

BabyLabyrinth Tue 14-May-13 20:10:52

Maybe our story will help some of you? Forgive the essay.

I fed DD to sleep for 11 months and basically every two hours throughout the night. Often hourly. She's nearly 13 months now, and has finally been sleeping through since I nightweaned her two weeks ago. It's changed my life! (We're still co-sleeping, but she's going into her own room next week sad)

I stopped feeding her to sleep for naps to start with -- and put her in the pram instead (from 8 mo). I rock the pram and sing to her a bit, then she drops off. This improved her naps immediately and means she gets far more sleep during the day. (She used to nap twice a day for 30 mins, now she does one hour in the morning and two in the afternoon.)

Then when she was 11 mo, I stopped feeding her to sleep in the evening. I just sat with her whilst she fell asleep in her co-sleeping cot. Not an easy process by any means, and she cried a lot the first few nights. I comforted her the best I could without giving her the breast for five minutes at a time, then bf her till she was calm and relaxed again. Then put her down awake. I think it took two or three rounds of this until she fell asleep for the first two days, and then after that she stopped being unhappy in the evenings. Normally it takes her 10-15 mins to fall asleep, but it sometimes takes up to 45 mins. I stay with her and read a book or something until she drops off. Currently she dives over the "wall" I make out of a duvet every few minutes, which is a hilarious game.

If she woke at any point in the evening before we'd gone to bed, I would comfort her in the same way as bedtime so she got used to putting herself back to sleep.

Once we went to bed, I just fed her as often as she wanted as normal, but stopped letting her fall asleep on me completely. (I think I did the Pantley Pull-Off, but having never read the book, I'm not sure.)

Then two weeks ago, when I nightweaned her. Which, amazingly, was not as difficult as I'd thought! The first night she woke at 11, so I fed her (I was worried 12 hours was a bit ambitious to go without milk straightaway). Then she woke at 3, and I just cuddled her. She cried, but it wasn't that bad. Once I gave her her sippy cup of water, she calmed down, drank loads, then lay down and went back to sleep until 6.

The next night I woke her to feed her at 11, then the same thing happened at 3 a.m. as the night before. Maybe five minutes of crossness, then a big slurp of water and back to sleep.

Night three was even better. No feed at 11 (she never woke up), then just a minute of stropping at 4 a.m.

Since then she has slept 6.30 till 5.30 (when DH gets up), then plays for a bit with her toys and hits me on the head with her sippy cup. At 6 I let her feed as long as she wants, which is usually 45 mins, so I can doze a bit more. It is still an early start, but I feel so much better having slept at least seven hours in a row!

Maybe some bits of what we did will be helpful for some of you. I know how hard it is to function on such crap sleep. Hoping you all have a good night tonight.

BabyLabyrinth Tue 14-May-13 20:14:42

I forgot to mention: she has upped her milk intake during the day which I didn't think was even possible. I'm feeding her probably every 90 mins at the moment ... But even though everyone else gives me stupid looks and wonders why I'm feeding a toddler, it is definitely worth it for the sleep!

MissingMyMarbles Tue 14-May-13 22:36:17

Thanks Squidgerssmile Have had a better day today, and she seems to be having a better night too. I was getting to the end of my tether yesterday; I've found going back to work really hard, and felt like life would be a lot easier all round if Little'y was sleeping better at night. Really I don't think it's too bad, until I'm nearly on my knees...

That does offer hope, Labyrinth. I know they all do it eventually in their own time, but I like your plan and may just coin itgrin

BabyLabyrinth Wed 15-May-13 07:12:22

Good luck, Missing! Hope the night went well. It must be really hard being back at work on so little sleep. I'm going back part-time in June, so I'm really hoping the move to her own room isn't too hard.

I was getting so tired I was considering CC, but I didn't see how that would work while she was still in our room. Plus I really hate hearing her cry. So my plan was based on gradual withdrawal just haven't quite managed to actually withdraw yet.

Squidgers, I write down every single nightwaking and feed and have done since DD was 8 wo OCD. I naively thought at the beginning that I would only be recording things for a few weeks, then she would sleep through.
Up until two weeks ago, every entry looked like this: 6.30 - 8.30 - 10.30 - 12.00 - 1.00 - 3.00 - 4.00 - 5.00 - 6.00 and I had no room in my diary for any other appointments
Now it looks likes this: 6.30 - 5.30 - 6/6.45 grin

Jinsei Wed 15-May-13 07:19:50

No specific advice as I can barely remember what we did, but just wanted to say that we managed to night wean while continuing to co-sleep, so it is possible! smile

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