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Help needed with EBF 1yo unrelenting boob monster

(6 Posts)
eversomuch Sun 17-Nov-13 12:31:08

DS just turned 1yo. He is still BFing a lot:

- early morning (around 4 or 5am) and/or upon waking, usually between 6 and 7am.

- mid-morning for a nap (he's only started taking a nap in the last couple of weeks. Most of the past year he has not slept during the day AT ALL)

- mid-afternoon (if he hasn't napped in the morning, I usually try again here; we rarely get two naps out of him)

- at bedtime (7pm)

- 1-2 times during the night on a good night (he's only slept through a handful of times); on a bad night, could be 4 or 5 times; I thnk these feeds are often just comfort feeds, which leave me feeling like a chew toy

He can also be a very squirmy feeder: starts on one side for a minute or two, then squirms, switches sides for another minute, switches again and again until he settles; sometimes scratches/slaps at me, grabs my glasses and flings them across the room, nips (rarely, and usually only if teething). It would probably make for a great comedy if it wasn't so frustrating for me. O_O

He never took a bottle or a dummy. We didn't try either until he was 3 months, so maybe it was too late. We haven't tried a bottle in a long time, and he now drinks from a sippy cup, so I don't know if we should try a bottle again. TBH, I've just been too tired to deal with expressing ...

But I'm really tired, too, of being the only one who can put him to bed or feed him during the night. I would like someone else to be able to give him a bottle at bedtime.

DD (2y8m) always fed to sleep and gradually reached a point where she'd be done feeding before falling asleep and she was fine just being put down and drifting off on her own. I got my period back when she as 9.5 months old. She self-weaned at 15 or 16 months (possibly bc I was pregnant with DS); it was a painless process for us both.

DS shows no signs of cutting back on the feeding or settling himself at night (though he was slightly awake when I put him down last night, so maybe it's the start?). I prefer not to do CC, but I will sometimes leave him for 5-10 minutes to give him a chance to settle. It sometimes works.

He's on three solid meals a day, plus snacks. We're vegetarian, but he gets lots of protein from eggs, pulses, etc.

I have loved BFing my kids, but I am at the point where I really want to stop -- or desperately want him to cut back. However, I ideally want him to be ready too. Bc DD self-weaned so easily, I'm not sure where to start. If I drop a daytime feed, that means he won't sleep during the day and we'll both be grizzly by teatime. I don't want to cause him huge distress but I'm ready to start working on phasing BFing out.

Any advice on what to do?

I have not been away from him for more than 2 or 3 hours his entire life, but I have tickets to see David Tennant in Richard II in late January and really do not want to miss it. So that gives us just over two months to work on weaning and on getting him to let someone else put him to bed.


Jiltedjohnsjulie Sun 17-Nov-13 21:47:48

How would you feel if his feeds were more settled? At the moment they don't sound very easy for you. It's never too soon to teach some nursing manners. Would you be happier continuing with bfing if he behaved better?

I wouldn't bother introducing bottles. Formula and bottles aren't recommended after 12 months. Mine would take cows milk from a cup with a soft spout at that age, have you tried one of those?

The amount of feeds he's is having don't sound like a huge amount although I appreciate that I'm not the one doing them smile. He is only having 4 daytime feeds. I know lots of people have reduced these by now but lots haven't and if you want to reduce feeds, I'd concentrate on the nighttime ones first.

I'd feed him when he wakes early. When he wakes again, did you say this was about 7ish, take him downstairs and give him a good breakfast then bf. The current advice is once they are one you can offer a feed after the solids.

About 10 I'd give him a drink and a snack, savoury muffin, cheese on toast, cheese straw and fruit, oatcake and nut butter, something like that, then another bf but I wouldn't try for a sleep then, I'd keep him up and out.

Offer lunch about 12 followed by another bf then try him with a nap.

Snack then bf at 3ish.

Tea and bf about 5ish and a bedtime feed.

Obviously this is an ideal and if you can work towards it at least, it might, just might help with the night feeds smile

As for you bedtime feeds. I'd be tempted to just go out and leave DH to it a couple of times, or whoever will be having him in Jan. In all probability he will be fine and if you're not in, you won't cave if he's complaining.

I really don't think he will self wean at 12 months. There's a lot going on at this age and your dd was a good few months older when she self weaned. According to kellymom its relatively unusual for a baby under 18 months to self wean, so you may be expecting a bit too much there smile. If you do want him to stop bfing, I think you will have to drop your bfs one at a time. The current advice is to drop one every 2 weeks.

If the night feeds are getting too much for you, have you read 12 alternatives or the no cry sleep solution?

I'm not trained though and you might be best talking all of this through with a BFC on one of the helplines.

eversomuch Mon 18-Nov-13 21:46:48

Thanks, Jilted. To clarify, I didn't mean I would like him to self wean at 12m, rather that I'd like him to continue BFing for as long as he wants and wean when he's ready. But all the night wakings and lack of daytime sleep and his often rowdy behaviour on the boob are frustrating, making me want to stop.

Maybe I'll try getting him to feed more during the day, as your scenario proposes.

If he'd start sleeping through reliably everything would be perfect, I'm convinced! ;)

Jiltedjohnsjulie Tue 19-Nov-13 09:43:18

Did you read the nursing manners link OP?

eversomuch Tue 19-Nov-13 13:40:17

Yes, I did. Thanks. I already try some of the methods proposed but will definitely see if any of the ones I haven't (like giving a soft toy or something else to handle during feeds) make a difference.

But I do want to also work on getting him to take his bedtime feed from someone else in a bottle or cup. Not really keen to give cows' milk, so that will mean expressing, I guess.

Jiltedjohnsjulie Tue 19-Nov-13 13:58:26

Giving her something else worked for me, dd was very fiddle and from a youngish age I put her fingers to my earlobe. Years later she still sometimes plays with it now.

If he's one, can't he just have cows milk for his last feed?

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