My Baby Won't Go to Sleep Unless He Is Nursing!

Updated on October 26, 2009
H.B. asks from Granbury, TX
8 answers

Help mamas!
I have a six month old baby and he WILL NOT go to sleep without nursing, or without having a bottle when I am at work. It has gotten so bad that he won't even take a nap for me anymore because when I try to lay him down he wakes up and screams and screams until I go and get him! I have tried the crying it out method, and tried rocking him to sleep, but no dice! He is a very stubborn baby and will just scream and go rigid until I give him what he wants! He is a very happy and content baby normally, and seems satisfied during the day when I nurse him, so I don't think him not getting enough bm is the case. I just think I am his paci! Please any advice you can give would be great! I am having a very hard time getting anything done! TIA!

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answers from Dallas on

I just read about this last night in my breastfeeding book by Dr. Sears!

It says it's normal and expected for breastfed baby's to want to nurse at mom's breast to sleep, whether or not the baby is taking in food or sucking for comfort. I don't think you have anything to worry about! :-);

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

he's six months old; it's perfectly acceptable and normal to treat him like a baby -- he is one!
babies need comfort and security, & breastfeeding is a great way to provide that. it certainly is to be considered 'getting something done.'
kudos to you!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

Hi H.! My middle child was this way and I never figured it out and until he was nearly five bedtimes were difficult for us. This time around, my third son is 3 months old. As early as 2 months I could see us beginning to head down that same path. I changed our routine and that has worked wonderfully. I was letting him wake up and play then nursing him before putting him back down. Now I nurse him as soon as he wakes up, then play and keep him awake for at least an hour. When he starts getting drowsy and a little fussy, I lay him back down in his crib. Most of the time he just drifts off to sleep. Occasionally he'll cry or fuss for a minute or two. This has really helped us get into a routine. We aren't really on a schedule, but a routine. I know with my son, if he's sleepy and I'm holding him he thinks he needs to nurse. And I love the snuggle time that that provides too so it is hard to make that change. Once you can get him into a routine that works for yall you can add that extra snuggling/nursing time back in.. for us, it's at bedtime. He nurses, plays, then nurses to sleep and stays asleep until early morning.

I hope someone's advice helps you out and makes things easier!



answers from Dallas on

may need to burp more....try gas drops and holding upright (like up on your shoulder) for ten to twenty min after nursing ...this works for my 1 month old ( # 4 in our family) nursung relieves the gas pain but when they stop and lay down it hurts again...
.also my 3rd child was more extreme and would wake herself looking for me...would put down asleep and she would start reaching and rooting around for me....ended up with her bed next to ours so I could reach out and touch her...then a few weeks later progress to her bed in the next room so she could hear my voice...she too would cry however long until if u tried to wait it out...never saw such before...once she was deep asleep she was fine but had to be there to comfort when she first went down....



answers from Dallas on

Read Babywise. It works and it will make you and your baby happier!


answers from Abilene on

I don't have a lot of advice, but what I can say is, yes, a 6 month old is a baby and can't be spoiled by attention. But, there's nothing wrong with training your baby to put himself to sleep.

I know it's hard letting him cry. However, it is a way to train him to soothe himself. After laying him down, wait one minute then go in a check on him, reassure him that he's okay. The next time, wait 2-3 minutes. Each time, increase the time between your visits. After a few days, you should see an improvement.

Our daughter now may lay awake in her crib for an hour or so at night, but she can put herself to sleep.



answers from Dallas on

I did that with my daughter. It was the only time she would snuggle then I would hold her for an hour more - it was so wonderfully sweet.

Don't do this.

I fought with my daughter all through elementary school to go to bed - it was exhausting.

Try the Baby Wise books. My next child, ten years later, was trained with this book and all I have to do now is say it's bed time: Brush your teeth, wash your face, and go potty and that's it. He may be awake for an hour more but it's in bed and then when he's tired, he sleeps.

I cry (really I do) because it's so easy. It was so so hard the other way.


answers from Dallas on

he's probably teething and looking for some comfort. my first baby was a horrible teether and cried a lot when trying to get her to bed. try putting a sippy cup of water in the crib for her to chew on. also, i tried many things to get my 6 month old to go down without a fight. usually, i ended up patting her bottom for like 30 minutes!! my second is totally different.

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