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Need to get dd2 to bfeed less.

(30 Posts)
ionesmum Thu 31-Mar-05 21:39:04

The hv said today I need to get dd2 to eat more or we'll never get her to sleep well. Can you suggest how I can cut down on her bfs? She is really still fed on demand which I don't suppose she should be at 12 mo. I also need to get her to take a cup and stop bfeeding to sleep.

Feel a bit sad really...I wanted so much to bf after I couldn't the first time around...so glad I managed it but now I guess is the beginning of the end.

hunkermunker Thu 31-Mar-05 21:52:13

How much does she bfeed? DS is one on Sunday and is bfed on demand too - but I guess he only really 'demands' it four times a day maximum.

How much does she eat during the day? When you say she feeds on demand, do you offer or does she tell you she wants it? I know full well how persistent they can be, even at this age!!

hewlettsdaughter Thu 31-Mar-05 22:04:07

Do you think the HV is right? I am still breastfeeding my dd, nearly one, on demand (when I am with dd anyway - she doesn't take much formula from the childminder). I also breastfeed her to sleep - although we have progressed recently from dd being virtually unconscious before being transferred to her cot to just being sleepy. Could you try that?

hunkermunker Thu 31-Mar-05 22:09:58

Has your HV been supportive of bfeeding so far? Some have a kind of 'cut-off' of when they think bfeeding should finish, it seems

If you don't want to stop, DD is happy to continue then don't let there be three of you in your breastfeeding relationship

moondog Thu 31-Mar-05 22:15:58

Why did she say this?
Is she too thin?
It depends entirely on what you want to do. If you feel the b/feeding on demand and b/feeding to sleep is too much, there are things you can do to change this without stopping b/feeding (speaking as someone who did it with dd for 21/2 years)

Gentle distraction or offering something else can help when she nuzzles up to your chest. Could her father put her to bed?

Great that you were successful second time around!!!

Demented Thu 31-Mar-05 22:23:11

Like Hunkermunker I was still feeding my DS2 (more or less on demand) about four times a day when he was 12 months, the b/feed before bed was still very important to him.

If both you and DD2 are happy with the arrangement then it seems a shame to put a stop to things.

How many feeds does she have a day?

mears Thu 31-Mar-05 22:38:25

ionesmum - I am sorry but I do not agree with your HV. IMO, sleep is not correlated to food intake. It might be that you need to stop feeding during the night (if she does that is) to get her out of the habit of night feeds, which at 12 months she does not need. I fed all my babes to sleep and DD fed till she was 15 months old. How well does she eat otherwise?
I B/F DD whenever she wanted it at 12 months but she was also on 3 meals a day. What is the exact problem? Is it just sleep?

tiktok Thu 31-Mar-05 22:45:11

ionesmum, at this age sleep/settling is behavioural and in a growing, thriving baby it's unrelated to food intake. Shame your HV is so ill informed (but that isn't very unusual, sadly).

You have a sleep/settling issue, which you may or may not want to tackle.

It's not a feeding 'problem'.

hewlettsdaughter Thu 31-Mar-05 22:46:08

mears, I don't want to hijack, but how do you stop feeding at night if it is what you've always done when they wake?

ionesmum Thu 31-Mar-05 23:30:41

Thanks for all your replies. As far as I'm concerned, the big problem is the sleep - I hardly get any unbroken sleep and it's taking its toll. Just checked dd2's chart and she has dropped a bit off her line which is the 75th centile, she weighs about 9.8 kilos. I'd like a bit more of a pattern to our day as dd2's naps are all over the place, and I'd like her to drink from a cup so I can go out for the afternoon with dh. But re the food, I'm happy so long as she is, although I am worried about her iron slightly. I think dd2 has about four or five veeds a day, plus around three or four after she's gone to bed - it's the night ones I really want to stop although am happy to give her a feed when I go to bed later on.

This is a different hv to the one I usually see and her advice is the same as my usual one. Been feeling really sad today, I don't want to stop bf. Also it's brought back memories of stopping with dd1.


Mears, would love to know what I can do about stopping bf to sleep.

mears Fri 01-Apr-05 00:55:05

I personally would breast feed her to sleep after her bath before going to bed, if that is what she is used to. As far as the night feeds go, the way to stop them is to 'shut up shop' and not give them. I am afraid you will have to ride out the storm. Send DH to settle her so that she does not look for a feed. I would not offer anything else because quite frankly, she does not need it. Howver, it is a hard thing to do but it is a habit she has got into. Depends how despearte you are to get an unbroken night. I have heard of women who have actually had success over just a few nights - depends on your resolve. If she breastfeeds less during the night she may get into a better routine during the day. There is absolutely no need to stop breastfeeding altogether, so please don't be forced into making that decision.

Fran1 Fri 01-Apr-05 01:10:08

If you don't want to give up then don't!

I had a hv tell me the same thing when dd was 12mths, she really made me worry, telling me how bad it would be the older she gets.

So i battled with this for a year. - i didn't want to be harsh and just stop, and in fact didn't have the willpower to put up with dd's tears. So bf continued until 2years.

I'd say i made gradual changes to slow it down gently. By avoiding cuddles at times dd usually fed. And dd always bottlefed also for when i was at work, so i figured moving onto bottles would mean easier to take the bottle away than the boob.

At 2 dd was not bf at all but does still have a bottle to go tobed with -which i don't like, but hope she'll stop that in her own time.

So i think yes it'd be a good idea to try and train your dd to learn to fall asleep alone, but no don't panic about stopping bf altogether.

I found it helpful to cease all contact with hv's and my confidence improved remarkably!

ionesmum Fri 01-Apr-05 11:05:11

Thanks, mears, for your advice. And thanks Fran, too, you may be right about avoiding the hv!

hunkermunker Fri 01-Apr-05 11:37:14

Ionesmum, don't worry too much about the charts - DS was born on the 75th and steadily followed that until about four months (when HV started asking me what food he was eating...ffs! She was amazed I wasn't giving him food till he was six months old, despite knowing what the WHO recommended and kept hassling me until he was six months - saying "Why don't you just try some vegetable purees, don't give fruit or he'll never eat veg - wtf?!). He gained really well on breastmilk to begin with and put on 3lbs in six weeks - then he started getting 'active' and burnt up what he took on board.

I had him weighed when he was 43 weeks old and he was 19lbs. I had him weighed on Wednesday (52 weeks old) and he was 19lb 7oz. He eats lots each day, breastfeeds well and is now following a line just above the 9th centile. I didn't hang about to talk to a HV on Wednesday...

He's extremely happy, healthy, eats a wide variety of food, is growing out of his clothes, learning new things and he was ten days overdue and I had query gestational diabetes, so I wasn't surprised he has "dropped" through the centiles.

I would second the advice about getting DH to settle your DD - it's FAR too tempting to do the sure-fire 'you will go back to sleep if I stick my boob in your mouth' thing - I know, I've done it! I'm sure if she has less milk during the night, she'll want more food during the day.

It does not have to be the end of breastfeeding, far from it. And I would also second the advice about avoiding HVs

moondog Fri 01-Apr-05 15:53:06

Yeah, what's with these hvs obsession with having big kids!? My dd was about 75/80 centile and it didn't bother me or the HV one bit!
She's a real Amazon now though!

hunkermunker Fri 01-Apr-05 16:25:31

MD, it's like if they're above the 50th, they're fantastically healthy (not saying that lots of bigger babies aren't healthy, btw - not that mental!) and if they're below, they're weedy pigeons - they have to be on or above the 50th.

My HV puts her head on one side and speaks patronisingly to me. Can you imagine how well that goes down?!!

moondog Fri 01-Apr-05 16:27:10

Yesw,it's all b*** isn't it hm?!
Do you administer a sift dismissive karate chop to her person when she starts spouting shite?

hunkermunker Fri 01-Apr-05 16:30:08

No, I tape articles from the Guardian about growth charts to her back and point and laugh

moondog Fri 01-Apr-05 16:31:41


(Wish there was a hearty 'cacking myself 'cos i'm laughing so much' emoticon.)
Mears never sinks to our puerile depths does she??

hewlettsdaughter Fri 01-Apr-05 21:22:52

Hmm, I kind of knew the answer to my question even as I asked it. Thanks though, mears. Hunkermunker is right, it's far too tempting to just go with feeding back to sleep at night (I worry less about disturbing the neighbours that way too!). I think I shall have to start sending dh in more often (and persuade him not to just bring her in to me when he does go to her...)

ionesmum, just recently at dd's bedtime I have been feeding her downstairs, then taking her up to her room, looking at a book with her, then lying her down in her cot and rubbing her tummy/back. Sometimes this works and she drifts off without another feed; sometimes it doesn't.

MrsMiggins Fri 01-Apr-05 21:35:25

BF & waking is difficult cos so easy to just go and latch on....
DS (now 3) slept thro night from 3 mths til we went on hol at 5 1/2 mths.
After we got back he woke at 4.30am for feed. Took 10 mins so I just did it.
DH went to dr who said he was "chronically overtired" (what about me!!!!!)
DR said it was cos I was BF & should give DS bottle to make him sleep through.
I was sooooooo annoyed that that night when DS woke at 4.30 I refused to feed him. 2 nights later (and some crying) he started sleeping til 7am. (12 hrs)
Babies are little bugger who know how to press ur buttons.

You need DH to go in if baby awakes & offer beaker of water - baby will be pissed off but will soon learn.

I am on my 2nd child & believe me they are clever from a very early age

MrsMiggins Fri 01-Apr-05 21:38:35

p.s
dont worry about stupid centile
DD (10 mths) keeps dropping - weight now 21st.
However HV wont measure her length - she is on the 91st centile for length PLUS been crawling last 3 mths & walking last 2 mnths.
Anyone can see reason why DD dropping is because she is soooooo active.
DONT WORRY - always trust your instincts

californiagirl Fri 01-Apr-05 21:46:00

In my experience, getting her to sleep well did get her to eat better, but that was the cause/effect. When I spaced out her feedings at night, she ate more solids during the day (and did not reduce any other breastfeeds). My method for spacing out feedings at night just happens to work for me and my baby, it isn't anything anybody else would recommend, and it involves some screaming. I would just pick a timing (originally it was no closer together than every 2 hours), and if she cried before her time was up, I would cuddle her but not feed her. Because I never learned to nurse side-lying, it actually took her about 5 months to figure out the breasts were still there when I was lying down, and even now that she's figured out she could try to get at them, she really knows it's not going to happen. Each time I shifted the rules, it took about a week to get her to adjust to the new rules fully, usually with a day or two of fury.

At just before a year, I started trying to move her to every 4 hours, which would mean 2 feeds at night time. That didn't go as well, partly because she kept getting sick, and then one day she suddenly decided she only needed 1 feed at night. She
goes 6-7 hours the first stretch now. She did this the day after the Dr. gave me a lecture on how I was doing it wrong (she seemed to think I must be feeding her to sleep, which I stopped months ago, mostly because it stopped working reliably and I'm not willing to sit around letting her nurse for an hour and a half).

pixiefish Fri 01-Apr-05 21:58:32

sounds like my hv.

i just don't tell her the truth anymore about dd's sleep or lack of

ionesmum Fri 01-Apr-05 22:04:15

Very interesting posts and loads of support, thank you, just what I needed! And some new ideas for stopping the might feeds which is just what I need too.

I have given dd2 three feeds so far today, I was really pleased as she ate loads for breakfast and lunch, and drank some water - but then totally rejected her dinner, even the bits of it she's eaten before. So am not sure what effect, if any, not bfeeding as much has had - except that the feeds she has had have been long and full. If not bfeeding by day does not increase the amount of solid food she eats, it will be counter-productive, surely?

Thanks again for lots of constructive advice, I look forward to trying some ideas out and ignoring my hv

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