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Should I stop bf at night? Going a bit loopy with tiredness need advice please

(12 Posts)
Aldegirl Sun 16-Aug-09 15:25:43

My ds is 5 1/2 months and has always been breastfed. He is now also on 2 solids per day (afternoon and evening) - on advice of GP, HV and LLL lady as he's sitting up, grabbing food from us at the table, weighs just under 9kg (birth weight=4kg) and was screaming hungry post bf and waking every 2 hrs at night for food.

My problem: he still wakes every 3-4 hours in the night for feeds (sleeps roughly 12 hrs at night 7 til 7), but then in the mornings he refuses the boob until well past midday. So he can go 6+ hours without milk. And I'm shattered from not having had a straight night's sleep for so long.

The question(s): does he refuse milk because he's full from his night feeds? Can he therefore be persuaded to not feed at night (between 11pm dreamfeed and 7am) so he gets milk at breakfast like most babies and I get my sleep back? And how would I go about doing this? Offer him water, a dummy, let him cry (argh!!), what?

I would totally not mind feeding him at night if he then was still hungry in the morning. As it is he's happy and bouncy and not at all hungry, and I'm so so tired, and worried that my milk will dry up if I keep getting such interrupted sleep.

Would really really appreciate help / similar experiences. Asked this on another post but got hardly any answers so hope this one is better phrased...

Thanks all

mumblecrumble Sun 16-Aug-09 16:13:45

You sound knackered and that you have done everything to keep your baby happy and well fed.

Sounds like you need to adjust so that the 6 is hours is say 11 - 4 over night? How does he feed from midday to evening? Are you offerering constantly? Perhaps you could encourgae as much feeding as possible so that he settles a bit at night.


bumping for you..

tutu100 Sun 16-Aug-09 16:18:25

That sounds like my ds2 who is 8 months. I can't really get him to bf much during the day, but then he wakes every 3 hours during the night to feed. Today I fed him at 4am and he didn't want to feed from me again until 2pm (he had breakfast and lunch inbetween). I keep trying to get him to bf more during the day so he does a long stint at night but he refuses.

I will watch this thread with interest.

But I really do empathise. Most days I feel like a zombie.

hanaflower Mon 17-Aug-09 11:39:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lilymolly Tue 18-Aug-09 09:14:55

similar situation here- although my ds is 5 months old, he is not weaned, but is waking up every 2 hours and lastw eek I was feeding him to put him back to sleep and it was killing me. I decided on sunday that enough was enough and he now only gets 1 feed at abou 3am between 7pm and 7am. He goes straight back to sleep for dp using a dummy.

My then feed him every 2 hours during the day.

Can you go cold turkey during the night- maybe only doing one night feed (to help maintain supply)

He could be waking up for comfort boob

I am also going to bed at 9pm, and using ear plugs so DP hears ds and I can get at least 4 hours straight sleep, he then wakes me at about 3am to get up and do the feed.

you do have my sympathies though- its crap being tired, and my dd (3) gets the wrath of my tongue sad

dinkystinky Tue 18-Aug-09 09:23:04

DS2, now 6 months, was like that at 4/5 months - he was so interested in everything going on around him in the day that he wouldnt take proper feeds and then would just catch up at nights and refuse to feed in the morning as he was still so full. I found taking him to a quiet dark room - when DS1 would let me that is - would help him feed better as did upping the day feeds to every 2 to 3 hours. Now on an ideal night DS2 will wake only once for a feed sometime between 1 and 3 and then be up at 6 and take a half feed then and finish it off after his breakfast.

It does sound like he's getting most of his feeds in the night from your post so trying to stretch out the night feeds and upping the day feeds may help. However bear in mind that they have growth spurts again at 6 months and 9 months so his feeding - day and night - should up then.

MiniMarmite Tue 18-Aug-09 12:52:10

I stopped feeding my ds in the night at 5 months because he was refusing his feed in the morning. I did Pick Up/Put Down if he woke in the night. Took a couple of weeks but worth it.

Aldegirl Tue 18-Aug-09 20:29:00

THANK YOU all so much! It feels better just knowing my ds is not the only baby doing this (can tell he's my first one, eh?) and getting ideas from other mums.

Minimarmite, I have been considering the PUPD thing, and even doing CC. Might get back to you for advice. It's tricky at the moment because we have lots of visitors at the mo (so no superearly nights possible really) plus a load of night shifts coming up for dp so not an ideal time. I've been hoping that magically at 6 months ds will stop waking at night ("Hah!!" I hear Tutu say bitterly) but I reckon it is mostly comfort boob. So that could go on forever. My nephew is 2 1/2 and still gets 3 bf per night shock, there's no way I could hack that.

Mumble and Dinky - I am offering constantly during the day, and have tried the darkened room thing, but it's just that he doesn't want the boob. Before he'd bf anywhere anytime almost but now he gets properly pissed off if I try to get him to feed.

Lilymolly, how did you do the cold turkey-only-one-night-feed thing? Dream feed at 11, one feed at 3 or 4 and then up at 7 would be fine for now. Did you give water, dummy, nothing?

Let's wait and see what happens tonight...

lilymolly Tue 18-Aug-09 21:39:20

I or dp simply use the dummy to settle him, which seems to work. TBH the only reason I am feeding him once a night, is because all the breastfeedind advice is to maintain one night feed as it helps with your supply as prolactin levels are highest. he is not fed after 7pm, we do not do a dream feed, as it made no difference to his waking time, and it also meant I either had to abstain from alcohol, or pump milk (cant be arsed!)

My dd was put onto formula at 17 weeks and used to have a dream feed which stopped at 24 weeks, then slept until 7.30am so I was spoilt smile

Once he is fully weaned onto solids, I will then rethink and cut out all night time feeds. hmm

eclairea Thu 20-Aug-09 20:03:28

Can you get someone else to go into him at night? This has worked with my ds (10 months though, but 9kg). My husband went into him instead of me. First 3 nights we could both tell he (ds) was a bit cross with this, but he did go back to sleep). Now he sleeps through just over 50% of the time, and the rest of the time dh settles him. We are 3 weeks into this.

Aldegirl Fri 21-Aug-09 10:42:22

Night before last ds woke only twice, every 4 hours, it was great. then last night he woke 22:30, 1:30, 4:30, 5, 6:30. I can't do this anymore and it's so clearly comfort as of today no more feeding to sleep ever and no more milk between midnight and 7. Aaaaaargh! Will try offering just water in a bottle.

Lilymolly, ds has mysteriously stopped taking the dummy. he pulls it out of his mouth and starts chewing the sides instead, or turning it over and over in his hands. maddening. Eclairea, my husband does help when he can but he is on call a lot of nights at the mo for his job so we're trying to let him have as much sleep as possible. Although if things go on like this he'll have to help or I'll end up sobbing and wake him up anyway.

Oh sorry for drama and lack of punctuation but am so tired.

Rhian82 Fri 21-Aug-09 12:18:18

We did this as well and it worked brilliantly. At about 6.5 months old DS was waking every couple of hours, but with us it was obvious it was a comfort thing rather than needing the nutrition. We made the decision to cut out all night feeds and DH took over completely at night - we agreed that me picking him up wouldn't work. He was never left to cry, DH always cuddled him and comforted him back to sleep, and offered water - never wanted it! - but we just never fed him milk. It took a couple of weeks of really horrid nights, but then he started sleeping through from 7pm-5am, and has done ever since (now 10 months). So glad we did it!

DS seemed happier as well for being better rested, so was a win all round!

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