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Sleep and BLW 11 month old

(10 Posts)
MidgersMama Sat 23-Jan-16 08:56:32

Hey all,

My DS is 11 months old and we have been trying BLW since he was 6 months. Despite offering him 3 meals a day he barely eats a thing at all. Maybe 1 tiny mouthful all day eventually makes it into his tummy sad he will not accept a spoon at all. I'm still breastfeeding him every 2-3 hours during the day and night...

My problem is this - he sleeps really badly (since he was about 5 months). He falls asleep completely on his own for naps and bedtime, and I always lay him down awake after each night feeding and he settles himself to sleep really well. But he always wakes between 1 and 3 hours throughout the night sad I'm so tired and so sad about it. I wonder if he wakes because he's very hungry so I end up breastfeeding him every waking. Can I expect him to go any longer at night when he doesn't eat during the day? I don't know if it's hunger or habit that causes his night waking and it's making me feel like we failed!

Sorry for very long post. Any advice would be gratefully received! Thanks x

tiredybear Sat 23-Jan-16 09:52:35

That sounds really tough.

Firstly, let's celebrate the wins..'ve breastfed your baby til 11months. WELL DONE! It takes A LOT of hard work and commitment.'ve helped your LO to learn to fall asleep on their own - that's not easy at all.

You could try to drop at least one of the night feeds, as they should be able to go a bit longer between feeds, even just on breast milk. Can you get someone else to resettle your DS at that time? I found I couldn't when trying to drop a feed as he could smell the milk on me! That would at least let you have a more regular chunk of sleep...and the world is a much happier place when that happens.

I know that "food before one is just for fun" but as your LO is 11 months now, perhaps you should speak to the HV/doc just to put your mind at rest that there is no other reason they're not into solid food yet. It could be something simple like an undiagnosed tongue tie that's making it hard for your DS to move food round his mouth.
They could at least give you some ideas on how to proceed. I'm not sure how you feel about it, or if it would be the right thing to do, but maybe introducing formula or cow's milk (from 1 year) might help them to stay fuller longer.

Good luck xx

Purpleboa Sat 23-Jan-16 10:03:24

Sympathy and flowers you haven't failed at all, it sounds like you're doing everything right.

My DD is 7 months and sounds like this. She's blw and so far, the most she's eaten is half a cookie (oops). Tried spoon feeding but like your LO, she won't take it. Rejects formula. My plan was to wean her off breastfeeding at 6 months. Ha!! We're nowhere near that happening!

I'm back to work in May and I'm really worried things won't have changed.

Sorry, no advice just commiserations! Tiredy gives some excellent advice though. I really hope things change for you. I had no idea how difficult it would be to stop breastfeeding and how used to it they get. It affects sleep, weaning to solids...everything.

MidgersMama Sat 23-Jan-16 10:16:18

Thanks both. I really appreciate you responding.

Tiredy - I think I will try again to drop a feed during the night. We've tried before (with daddy settling as I must reek of milk!) but our attempts have been a bit inconsistent. Can I ask - do you reckon a 5 hour sleeping stint is a reasonable aim? So no feeds between midnight and 5am. Don't want to be overambitious and inadvertently cruel! And good idea about speaking to HV. Suppose am a bit nervous to hear I've done the weening wrong.

Purple - thanks for the commiserations. Am sorry to hear you're having similar concerns. I know these things are just a phase but oh my goodness do they cause stress in the meantime! Hope things smooth over before May.

YokoUhOh Sat 23-Jan-16 10:19:09

Completely normal OP. I BLW and BF DS through the night until 2.8 - it bore no relation to the amount he ate. I did the Dr Jay Gordon night weaning method, which worked (eventually - it's very gentle!). They do eat more eventually, promise!

bumpertobumper Sat 23-Jan-16 10:29:54

I could have written this post last week, except I am doing mixture of finger r foods and spoon feeding.
So last Friday I stopped feeding at night, having been doing 3 or 4 feeds a night, dd also 11 months. DP went to her every time she woke for the first 4 nights, after 2 nights she now only wakes once and is sshhhed back to sleep. I don't feed her until at least 6am, mostly she wakes at 6.30, which is earlier than before but better that being up half the night feeding.

I know that a quick feed back to sleep seems the easy option, but I am so glad to have done this.
And, she is now hungry during the day - days three good meals (rather than a couple of mouthfuls) with 4 or 5 bfeeds too.

And my books were bursting the first 2 mornings, but then adjusted and fine.
My advice - just stop the night feeds! It's hard the first few nights but worth it.
Good luck

MidgersMama Sat 23-Jan-16 10:44:36

So reassuring, thank you. You've made my mind up - will drop a night feed and hope that he feels a little more hungry. Thank you everyone. So glad to hear I'm not alone smile

tiredybear Sat 23-Jan-16 11:06:33

yes, a 5 hour stint is definitely reasonable. My advice would be to not be too rigid with when this is. When I nightweaned my DS he would not settle at all around 4, so he still gets a feed around that time, but otherwise doesn't feed now after 6.30pm.

You are definitely not alone and it sounds like you're doing a great job.

Don't be intimidated by your health visitor. It's their job to support you! If she starts criticising, firmly remind her you're after advice on how to proceed, not her judgement on your weaning choices.

You could also enquire about weaning support at your local children's centre.


happytocomply Sat 23-Jan-16 11:08:30

I BLW and BF my 8 month old. DS has really taken to BLW, eats masses and masses but sleep at night is still terrible and wakes 2hrly unless we co-sleep (which we often do for some of the night). I think night weaning of some sort might be the answer but I don't have the energy at the mo! My sister night weaned her baby at 10 months and (for a while) was getting 7 hrs sleep in a row, bliss.

What I'm trying to get at is I don't think there is a proper correlation between eating solids and sleeping well. Baby can eat loads and still be a terrible sleeper but like others have said don't be afraid to gently night wean, it's hard work but might really help.

Good luck!

happytocomply Sat 23-Jan-16 11:11:00

Message withdrawn, duplicate post.

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