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Stopping night feeds for an 8 month old.


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#1 Full of faith

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 09:57 AM

My DD is 8 months old and still wakes during the night for a feed. The time varies anywhere from 10pm to 4am. There is really no consistency with it. I have always given her a quick breastfeed on one side and we are both back in bed within 10mins. I don't find it all that bad but of course I am thrilled on the odd occassion when she does sleep through (even if my boobs feel like they are going to explode laugh.gif ).

During the last week she has had three nights of sleeping through so I thought that I would refuse to feed her if she wakes anymore. She is having three solid meals and 4 milk feeds a day so really shouldn't need to eat during the night. BUT it is so, so hard to refuse to feed her when she is crying, won't resettle and I know that it will just take a quick feed to get her back off.

My Mum and sister tell me to let her cry herself back to sleep. Should I? If I knew that 2 or 3 bad nights would definitely break the habit I might be able to stick with it. What did you do? What would you recommend?
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#2 cheekymonkey

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 10:02 AM

With our first, Alex, I had had enough of waking in the night to feed him, like yours only waking once, but varied in the time. He was around 8 months too. Decided to not feed him. It took a little time for him to settle the first night, less the second and we haven't looked back since apart from the odd night which was just needing settling rather than feeding. Good luck with what you decide to do smile.gif

#3 Full of faith

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 10:32 AM

QUOTE(cheekymonkey @ Feb 3 2012, 11:02 AM) View Post

With our first, Alex, I had had enough of waking in the night to feed him, like yours only waking once, but varied in the time. He was around 8 months too. Decided to not feed him. It took a little time for him to settle the first night, less the second and we haven't looked back since apart from the odd night which was just needing settling rather than feeding. Good luck with what you decide to do smile.gif


Tell me more! If I don't feed Ava she fully wakes up and is looking around everywhere (probably wondering what is going on). She won't go back to sleep in my arms and when I put her down she cracks it. I did leave her to cry for a while last night and there were periods of silence but then she would ramp up again and I gave in and fed her. sad.gif
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#4 jantastic

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 12:01 PM

I stopped around the same time for the same reason. I didn't want to leave him to cry... So ds at night became dh's problem laugh.gif

Any time he woke up, dh settled him. It only took a few nights (intermittently... He often slept through) and then he slept through permanently (we do still very very occasionally get a waking but it's always for a reason.)

Really, I think you just make the decision not to feed, and take the few crappy night wakings as a pretty safe bet, then they won't suck as much. Consistency is key!

Good luck!

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#5 bluenomi

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 12:10 PM

I didn't bother ph34r.gif I work full time and it was easier to just feed DD that fight with her and not get my sleep. I tried offering her water once or twice but she never took it so I kept feeding her overnight until she started sleeping through on her own.
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#6 Full of faith

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 12:17 PM

QUOTE(bluenomi @ Feb 3 2012, 01:10 PM) View Post

I didn't bother ph34r.gif I work full time and it was easier to just feed DD that fight with her and not get my sleep. I tried offering her water once or twice but she never took it so I kept feeding her overnight until she started sleeping through on her own.


How long did it take for her to stop on her own accord? My Mum fed me during the night until I was 13 months and a friend told her to stop doing it so she did and after two nights I didn't wake again. I am feeling a bit pressured by her and my sister to do the same thing.
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#7 Tigridia

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 12:31 PM

Hey Mel,

I think I told you before but I stopped night feeding Astrid at maybe 3.5 months? it was before 4 months at any rate. She didn't need it any more at that point and was only a habit (she still had a dream feed so I wasn't being too mean). I just stopped doing it. I think the first night was the worst and she carried on for over an hour. The second was about 25 mins and I think she may have just slept through the third? It was certainly by the 4th night at any rate. Mind you she was waking more like 5am rather than random other times so it wasn't that much drama for her to resettle for another hour or so.

I just told my DH to go and sleep in the study for the last bit of the night so he didn't have to listen to the protesting for the time it took her to go back to sleep. I agree that getting your husband to do the resettling might work. Maybe on a weekend? I cut it out during the week I think so that might have been why I was doing it.

Personally I don't think you should feel you need to stop the feed if you don't want to. Ava will probably stop it on her own at some point. If it's only 10 mins then it isn't too bad. My feeds took min of an hour and then she was getting harder to resettle as it was already close to 6am which is why i cut it out so early. If it was 10 mins and straight back to bed I probably wouldn't have fussed as much!
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#8 cheekymonkey

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 12:37 PM

We let Alex cry for a while (around 1/2 hour). We knew there was nothing wrong, and he wasn't really going for it. We found that there would be bits of silence, then starts up again, then the silences would get longer, he would eventually drift off. The second night was a lot easier/quicker, the third I don't think he woke. Not saying that this will work for you though, it's just what we did.

Don't feel pressured to do things like this though, you have to decide if it's what you and family need rather than what your mum/sister etc want/think is right.

#9 Gretch

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 12:48 PM

I fed T overnight until 22 months. Like you, it was only a quick feed and we were both back in bed within 15 minutes. I had tried to cut it a few times, but he was too young to understand and it felt unnecessary. When he was getting close to two he started manipulating my generosity ( tongue.gif ) and waking several times overnight, so I bit the bullet and stopped. We only had one bad night and he stopped expecting it. Still wakes overnight a lot of nights though, so it's not a magic solution for night waking.

The method I followed was designed for babies older than 12 months so I can't really help with ways to night wean your little one now if you decide to.
QUOTE(Full of faith @ Feb 3 2012, 01:17 PM) View Post

I am feeling a bit pressured by her and my sister to do the same thing.
Unless they are coming over to supervise at all hours, it should really be none of their concern!

Be reassured, that there are people out there who feed their babies at night well beyond what a lot of people seem to think is acceptable and survive to tell the tale!

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#10 Thelma

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 12:50 PM

If it's not really a problem to YOU then it's not a problem. Who cares what others say.

I was doing the same for quite a while. I would rather just do a quick feed and get back to sleep. As some stage I was over it so I then did something about it. I think my DD was a bit older, but I just gave her a bottle with water in it. Of course that wasn't what she wanted but eventually she went back to sleep. Then she stopped waking up for the feed cause it wasn't worth waking up for tongue.gif

#11 ~ela~

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 03:10 PM

Isn't it lovely that friends, family and strangers are so happy to share everything that you aren't doing correctly in their views! Sigh.

I can't even remember when Ethan stopped feeding during the night (he's just hit 3, my memory is rather blurred!), however Lucas fed during the night till around 10 months. Did I believe he needed it? No. However giving him milk for 10 min and having him doze back off to sleep was the ''easy'' thing to do during the unearthly hours of the morning when it seemed to be the only thing that settled him. I was on my own with 2 young children, and took whatever break/easy route I could. He too would wake at random times during the night. Eventually he did give it up, and now at 18 months when he wakes during the night he is offered his sippy cup of water.

It all depends on whether you are ready to stop night feeds. If you are happy with getting up for 10 min a night when bubs is 8 months and she is happily back to sleep after a feed, whose to say you aren't actually doing the right thing. However, if you are wanting to stop the night feeding because you want to (not from pressure of others), then I would think there will just be a few longer nights ahead before you see the result.

Good luck smile.gif

#12 greenwich

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 08:48 PM

QUOTE(cheekymonkey @ Feb 3 2012, 10:02 AM) View Post

With our first, Alex, I had had enough of waking in the night to feed him, like yours only waking once, but varied in the time. He was around 8 months too. Decided to not feed him. It took a little time for him to settle the first night, less the second and we haven't looked back since apart from the odd night which was just needing settling rather than feeding. Good luck with what you decide to do smile.gif


I tried this when my first was about 9 months. Sent DH in at night with a sippy cup or bottle of water to resettle her. The first night was bad, and they progressively got worse, so after night 5 I went back to feeding overnight as I figured she genuinely needed it. She slept through of her own accord at about 1 ish.

I'm not a morning person, so I actually preferred an overnight feed and a post 6am start than a 430 or 500 am start to my day ph34r.gif

Good luck with whatever you do.

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#13 jantastic

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 08:55 PM

QUOTE(greenwich @ Feb 3 2012, 08:48 PM) View Post


I'm not a morning person, so I actually preferred an overnight feed and a post 6am start than a 430 or 500 am start to my day ph34r.gif



Yes, just a warning - it worked wonderfully for us... but our mornings started at 5:30 from then on, whereas it was 6:30 -7 when he was waking for a feed around 4! I wasn't sure that it was BETTER, but lived in constant hope that the 530 would stretch out (it's just starting to comfortably stretch out a bit now, at 15 months).

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#14 greenwich

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 09:07 PM

QUOTE(jantastic @ Feb 3 2012, 08:55 PM) View Post

Yes, just a warning - it worked wonderfully for us... but our mornings started at 5:30 from then on, whereas it was 6:30 -7 when he was waking for a feed around 4! I wasn't sure that it was BETTER, but lived in constant hope that the 530 would stretch out (it's just starting to comfortably stretch out a bit now, at 15 months).


*nods* my DD1 'slept through' from 3.5 to 5.5 months, but sleeping through often meant a start time of 4.30 - 5.30. She then started waking once a night for a feed (and sleeping in until 6.30 - 7). My paed said when she was established on solids she'd sleep through again - I very quickly had her on 3 meals a day and it took until she was 1 to sleep through again. The only saving grace was that I could go back to bed when she did as she was my first!

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#15 bluenomi

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Posted 06 February 2012 - 08:01 AM

QUOTE(Full of faith @ Feb 3 2012, 01:17 PM) View Post

How long did it take for her to stop on her own accord? My Mum fed me during the night until I was 13 months and a friend told her to stop doing it so she did and after two nights I didn't wake again. I am feeling a bit pressured by her and my sister to do the same thing.


She would sleep through about once a month but around 17 months just started sleeping through most nights. Now when she wakes up at night breast feeding doesn't work to get her back to sleep. Most nights she sleeps 7:30 to 7

QUOTE(greenwich @ Feb 3 2012, 09:48 PM) View Post

I'm not a morning person, so I actually preferred an overnight feed and a post 6am start than a 430 or 500 am start to my day ph34r.gif


Same here! Getting up at 4am for 10-20 mins was so much easier than starting the day at 5:30-6am. Sometimes on weekends that 4am feed would mean she'd happily sleep until 8am, bliss!
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