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From Kelly Anne ~ Kayley is five months old and we do co-sleep. Just wondered if it's still normal for her to be nursing at night. Of course the doctor says "no" but I thought I would ask you all. She doesn't really wake up, but she looks to nurse. It's kind of something we both do in our sleep. If she is not hungry and just looking to suck to get her to sleep should I be discouraging this? My pediatrician says if I continue to night feed she will learn to be hungry at night throughout her life and never sleep correctly through the night. Any experiences on this?
From LSibell ~ Cari is 13 months old and she still wakes up from time to time to eat. My pediatrician said it was perfectly normal, but then again he is pro AP and extended nursing.
From Ramona ~ Grace is 11.5 months and still wants to eats once or twice through the night. I don't see any problem with it. If she's hungry, then she ought to be able to eat if she want to. Grace's pediatrician hasn't said one way or the other about it.
From dominic'smom ~ Dominic is 15 months old and is still nursing through the night. I am just happy that he is over the need to be latched on all night. That was a tough period for us. I don't know where the idea that your baby will always be hungry throughout the night - ask him (nicely) for info about the study that was done. My gastroenterologist told me the other day that if I stopped breastfeeding a lot not all my problems would go away. I asked him where I could get info about that since I would love to read about it - and he said well it's not really documented and just kind of trailed off. We are really lucky that our pediatrician's office is very AP supportive and they have never questioned the fact that we still nurse through the night and we tell them the full truth and not the edited version that I used to give my first ped because I got tired of the sideways disapproving looks. Good luck with your office. Hope this helped.
From serj ~ My first dd nursed 2 or 3 times a night until she weaned at 28 months. As soon as she weaned she started sleeping through the night. So saying if you night feed will lead to never sleeping through is simply not true! If it's working for you why fix it?
From SusanH ~ Another night nurser here. Susy is 16 months and nurses 1-3 times a night. Often she just latches on for a few seconds though and doesn't really nurse. With respect to your doctor, I think he may be off-base on this one. Does he also believe that because you allow your baby to use a diaper instead of the toilet she will learn to pee in her pants for life and never potty train? Personally, I believe that we in the West have very unrealistic expectations of infant sleep. Babies are designed to wake frequently and nurse during the night. It's what they do. When Kayley is ready to sleep all night, she will. In the meantime, I think you are doing exactly the right thing by letting her sleep with you and nurse when she needs to! You both get lots of sleep and she gets the comfort and food she needs during the night. If your doctor continues to advise against it, suggest that next time he wakes up thirsty during the night he try crying himself to sleep and see if he changes his opinion.
From mom2jazzygirl ~ Boy that one ranks up there with they won't be able to swallow food properly if you don't give them solids by 6 months! Trust me, dd nursed in the night until 6 weeks. But, she started waking to night nurse again at 6 months. She woke 2 times a night for months, increased to 5 times a night around 10 months and then tapered back to once a night until she was 13 months. She finally stopped waking for night feedings all on her own. At 28 months, she doesn't wake up to eat at night anymore. AND, she refused to sleep in the bed with me from early on, so she was doing that AND sleeping in her own bed.
DS nurses at least twice a night. Couple of nights ago, we nursed every two hours on the dot all night long. Don't worry about it, when your baby is ready to go without she will do it all by herself.
From JenT ~ My 16-month-old is just now going through the night without eating, most nights. At 5 months, she was probably still eating 2-3 times per night. So I think it's perfectly normal and no reason to stop the nighttime nursing.
From momanon ~ Your pediatrician said that!? Hah, typical. None of my kids completely stopped night nursing at least occasionally until they were weaned (2-3 years). They all sleep just fine now, although my 3 year old still comes in our bed sometimes. They don't wake to eat in the middle of the night either! Although sometimes they'll say they're hungry right before bed to try to delay bedtime which my DH admits he also did when he was little (and not an AP kid). I wouldn't worry about it unless it starts bugging you personally.
From Gayesy ~ What a load of rubbish about never being able to sleep well and learning to be hungry during the night! And I suppose we shouldn't use nappies on our kids either in case they never learn to use the toilet?? We shouldn't ever tie their shoelaces because that it teaching them to never learn to do it themselves?? You get the picture - sorry, vent over. I just get so sick of people in positions of "authority" spouting such rubbish as if it is fact.
My child nursed during the night until he was about 2 3/4 years old and now has NO trouble at all falling asleep and staying asleep. I do not have to get up and prepare him food at 2 am nor do I have any trouble with him sleeping poorly. Babies are MEANT to nurse during the night, probably until at least the age of two or so (but it depends a lot from child to child). They stop doing it as they grow, as with everything. You cannot make a child dependent anymore than you can make a child truly independent - they all develop at a rate that is right for them.
You just keep right on doing what you know to be right and take what this doctor says with a truckload of salt!
From Flatfork ~ I sure hate to go 8 hours without eating myself. Their little stomaches are so small they need to eat often. That's why there is such a benefit of sleeping with your child, on top of the nurturing you don't have to totally wake up to feed them, so you both get your needs met and everybody is happy.
From Kelly Anne ~ WOW! Thank you for all the responses! I feel much better now! I have no problem at all feeding her throughout the night but you know how it is when your doctor who is "supposed" to know everything says something. Thanks again for the encouragement. I guess we will just keep doing what we are doing!
From Psnyder ~ I suppose there are a lot of us with babies still waking at night! My son Blake is 7 months and still wakes up twice a night I think. I'm a really sound sleeper so I just roll over and feed ds without waking up. Hubby saw me do this several times and thinks it's amazing.
Once I learned to nurse ds while lying down, I started doing this. My ped - just saw him yesterday - also asked if Blake slept through the night. I told him no but I'm getting lots of sleep. Ped then asked what type of formula. I told him my story and he just shook his head. I told him I have guard rails on our bed. Ped looked even more horrified.
From abuddi ~ Another night nurser. My dd is 16 months and nurses through the night. I used to doubt myself on this decision to co-sleep but I realize that she is only a baby once and I will be there whenever she needs me, whether it's the middle of the night or not.