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How to give up breasfeeding...

Discussion in 'Parenting' started by wormburger, Sep 2, 2011.

  1. Please help! My LO is almost one and I am still breastfeeding her morning and night. She has never had a bottle as she just didn't take to one and we never needed to force the issue so didn't bother. She is a very good eater and fills up on solids during the day but is still really keen on milk and tends to feed for up to 40 minutes in the morning (5.30 am - 6.10) and probably 30 minutes in the evening (7-7.30pm), resulting in her falling asleep on the breast.
    I have just gone back to work part time and am feeling increasingly shattered and rubbish and I would really like to give up feeding, as I don't think this is helping. I have lost about 3 stone since I had her and now weigh 8 stone - she's eaten me! I would also really like a bit of freedom, maybe even the chance of a night out. More boringly, I'll also need to attend stuff like parents evenings very soon. Basically, the time has come for me to stop but as she is such an ardent feeder and won't take milk any other way (we have limited success wither her sippy cup, most comes straight back out!) <u>and</u> is still feeding to sleep, I have no idea how to do it!
    Any advice or stories of how you've done it would be greatly appreciated. Thank you x
     
  2. Please help! My LO is almost one and I am still breastfeeding her morning and night. She has never had a bottle as she just didn't take to one and we never needed to force the issue so didn't bother. She is a very good eater and fills up on solids during the day but is still really keen on milk and tends to feed for up to 40 minutes in the morning (5.30 am - 6.10) and probably 30 minutes in the evening (7-7.30pm), resulting in her falling asleep on the breast.
    I have just gone back to work part time and am feeling increasingly shattered and rubbish and I would really like to give up feeding, as I don't think this is helping. I have lost about 3 stone since I had her and now weigh 8 stone - she's eaten me! I would also really like a bit of freedom, maybe even the chance of a night out. More boringly, I'll also need to attend stuff like parents evenings very soon. Basically, the time has come for me to stop but as she is such an ardent feeder and won't take milk any other way (we have limited success wither her sippy cup, most comes straight back out!) <u>and</u> is still feeding to sleep, I have no idea how to do it!
    Any advice or stories of how you've done it would be greatly appreciated. Thank you x
     
  3. I fed until GG was 8 and half months when I had a parents evening. I had slowly weened her off the breast during the day with a bottle - but I had to get OH to give it. We also had to do a gradual introduction to formula (though you could go to cow's milk) by mixing 2/3 to a 1/3 and slowly reducing it till it was purely formula. Now GG has a bottle at night (though she doesn't fall asleep on it) and a beaker of milk in the morning. It is going to be really hard for you - and I do think you are going to have some issues with the fact she falls asleep on the breast in the evening. You really need to get her going into her cot awake as it will save so many issues later on. You will need the support of your OH to help you as I am sure she will reject the bottle from you. Good luck - I remember the battle and worries well.
     
  4. I know how you feel, i went through this with my little girl. I decided firstly to give up the night feeds which i was dreading because like your little one, she fed herself to sleep and i struggled with bottles. I did get her to take a medela special needs bottle and it was the only bottle she would take ( i could have sponsored a plastic recycling bin with the amount of bottles i tried on her). She took this at night and fell asleep on it but i still kept on the morning breastfeeds for another couple of months.
    To wean her off breastfeeding i basically gave her a bottle every other day (boob the others) for a couple of weeks until my milk dried up and she was happily on the bottle, this also made it less painful for me as i didnt suffer from engorgement.
    I'm sure there are easier ways but it did work for me, but good luck, i've just had a second baby and i will be trying the same tactics i'm sure!
     
  5. It might help if you stop bedtime duty for a while and let your OH takeover, if that is possible. I used to really worry about my daughter, I fed her to sleep every night, but went out for a night and came home to find little girl asleep in the cot. If she can't smell my milk, she falls asleep easily without it.
    We stopped feeding to sleep at around 11 months, it took a few days (so nowhere near as bad as the baby experts have you beleive), started off by feeding to music, then would stop feeding to sleep and put her in her cot and massage her to sleep. If your OH (I assume you have one, apologies if not) he may find his own way of getting her to sleep.

    Anyway battery about to run our- may add more tomorrow!
     
  6. Thanks for your replies ladies. It's really helpful reading what others have done. I already feed to music, so that maybe something that will help with the transition. My gut feeling is that at this age there is no point going over to bottles as she'd need to give them up too by the time she'd got used to them. I may try a doidy cup, has anyone used one?
    Fortunately, my OH is really supportive and has been getting up when she wakes at night for a few months now, this was to avoid me having to resettle her as I wanted to stop feeding her back to sleep in the night and she just wouldn't settle for me without milk. She will now fall asleep on her Dad easily after waking at night, but I don't know how he will manage to get her to sleep 'from scratch' straight after her bath as it tends to make her quite hyper. She's never been a good sleeper but we did find that the night waking decreased a lot once she realised she wouldn't get any milk.
    I have an evening thing at school next week so I may try feeding her before I go (around 5.30pm) then leaving her with my OH for him to see what happens when I'm not around! Maybe I should arrange drinks after with some workmates too, it will be good as an experiment. I don't need to stop immediately, so as we are both teachers my plan is to drop one feed at Oct half term and one in the Christmas Hols. This is so my OH will be able to support me without being wrecked for work, plus the motivation of being able to have a drink over Christmas may make me bite the bullet and sort it out!
    Thanks again, and keep the ideas coming! x
     
  7. I do admire your dedication to feeding. I do regret not keeping it up once back at work but I needed my freedom. I do think it will be a lot easier once you break the falling asleep on the boob. It might take a few nights with a few tears but if you are strong you'll be fine. On the bottle front we still use a bottle at night (19months old) - she has a cup of milk in the morning.
     
  8. nmason

    nmason New commenter

    My LO is 14 months and rarely feeds to sleep anymore (never thought I'd be saying that!). After about 20-30 mins (depending how on off he is) I lay him down and say goodnight. About 80% of the time he goes off to sleep without grumping. He does however wake in the night (since 13 months only 60% of the time, which is heaven!) and I feed him back to sleep, I don't have a good OH with regards getting up in the night, I just choose the easiest option. To get LO to go to sleep on him own we did have to leave him to grump some times, but not distressed. I never found music worked with him (although occasionally in the night I can 'Twinkle' him).
    My LO gets hyper in the bath too, so I do bathtime after breakfast and only before bed if he really needs it (after nursery quite often!).
    Doidy cups are a bit of a nightmare, they take a little practise for the child to get used to. Mine has got the hang of it but I have to tip it for him. I tried a few different types of cups as my LO was rubbish at drinking water, he gagged all the time. We finally found a Tommy Tippee one with a valve that works for him. He's now got the hang of the free flow ones.
    Hth's
     
  9. Thanks again ladies. Saw HV today and was advised to try and sort sleeping before dropping a feed so I am going to try feeding her downstairs early ish and then letting her Dad do the rest! I may take myself out as I'm not good with the screaming, hence I've taken the easy option until now!
     
  10. Right, I have a whole battery so plenty of time
    We had a several stage process....
    Step 1.
    Feed to sleep with music
    Step 2.
    Feed upstairs until sleepy
    Rock to sleep
    Step 3
    When sleepy placing in matress and massage/ rub/ if she cried too much I would pick her up, pat and rock,... 3 days or so

    Step 4
    Feed, bed, massage... gradually stop the massage before she sleeps or just place hand on back.... this is where we are. Eventually we will leave her to sleep alone.
    Husband also manages to do this- if I am out he gives her a cup and he does it.
    It is a slow process, too slow for many mothers but it works for us and makes me happy- I know CC works for many but I can't cope with it yet.
    Night wakings I just feed to sleep. I have good intentions but can't be ***** with them at 2am. I even get in the cot with her so I can lie down.

    Does that make sense? Husband very good at getting her to sleep.
     
  11. I just thought I'd post an update and ask a few more questions!
    I haven't yet dropped a feed but we've made massive progress with sleeping! For the last ten days I have been giving her her milk feed (still from the breast) downstairs at between 5.30 and 6pm. This is now only a short feed, about 5 mins from each side. She then has about another hour downstairs, playing, reading books, watching Nightgarden etc. It is then bath, PJ's and stories in her room with her music on and she is put down wide awake. She cries for about 5 mins, not hysterical and it is getting less, and is then fast asleep. Usually until about 5.30am.
    In the morning I have been leaving her for 10-15 mins after she wakes to see if she drops off again, if she doesn't then I bring her into our bed for a bfeed that can last up to 40 mins. We then get up for the day at about 6.15 am.
    So, my plan is to drop the pm feed in the next month. We have broken the association with sleep and I am cutting down the length all the time so I don't think she'd miss it. However, I am now worried about how to replace it. I have tried warmed cows milk from various beakers and bottles and she either doesn't take it or spits it out. I am not too concerned about her calcium intake, she has several fromage frais in a day, lots of cheese, ready brek with milk and lots of milky sauces for things like cauliflower cheese and fish pie. So is it still vital that I get her to take a drink of milk at night time? And if it is, does anyone have any tips?! I really want to drop the feed and feel that she's ready in every way except for sorting a replacement.
    Thanks x
     
  12. If you can't find a replacement, I think I would just try and drop it altogether- it is probably more about habit and comfort rather than nutrition. If it doesn't work, you can always try something else later.

    I don;t think it is vital.
     
  13. Hi, My 21 month old is breastfed and we did the sleep thing in the same way as you (we only did it last month). My daughter still sometimes has that dowstairs feed, I never offer it but happily give it if she asks for it. If I'm not there, it doesn't bother her to miss it. She will drink milk from a sippy cup but she rarely has it before bed and she always drinks it straight from the fridge - she won't touch it warmed up. We do sometimes give her cereal before bed and she eats plenty of cheese and yoghurt anyway so if you aren't worried about calcium then I wouldn't worry about replacing the feed. I figure it's about the comfort and she gets that in a different way from Daddy.
    Well done on sorting out the bedtime thing - we still struggle with it sometimes and it's hard! x
     

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