A.C. asks from Brandon, MS on November 23, 2008
Wean in Order to Get Pregnant?
Hi, I have a 16mo. boy old who I still nurse for nap time, bed time, and 2 or 3 times during the night. I still enjoy nursing although it bothers me that nursing seems to be the only way to get him to sleep (even for his naps). I have been wanting to ttc for a while now but I still do not have a period. My question is would it be a wise decision to wean my boy in order to ttc.? Also, if I do wean what are some ways I could possibly get him to sleep without nursing and without crying it out? Also he is still in bed with me so do I need to get him in his own bed to night wean him? Thank you for your advise! A.
R.V. answers from Tulsa on November 25, 2008
Sorry to be blunt (it's cost me my relationship with my neighbor), but truth has served me best from my friends when it's come to raising my daughter. Sounds to me like you are only nursing because you are a human pacifer. They must learn to self sooth. If a mother does not teach it when they are children, how are they to do it when they are adults. They must learn these fundamental traits in the loving environment of their home with their parents. My daughter only cried 2 nights when I broke her to her room. (and it was not very long). But since you have waited so long to do so, it will be harder for your son. I'm not against nursing after a year old. I nursed til Audrey was 13 months. But if you are doing it to put him to sleep, you are a pacifer - hands down. I know it's hard - but being a mother is not easy. It's like they are babies dependant on us and every step after that we are teaching them to do things on their own. It's okay for kids to cry. Don't we cry as adults? I don't mean to offend you. I reach out on these sights for honesty. And I appreciate it even when it's not what I want to hear. Take all the advice you get from these, pray about it, and do what feels right to you for your child and family.
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B.S. answers from Hattiesburg on November 25, 2008
I assume ttc is try to conceive? Child led weaning is the safest for your child's psychological and physical health. Often a woman will begin to ovulate while nursing. It is my opinion that it would not be in your child's best interest to wean him before he is ready (sucking need for brain development), to try to conceive. I would let nature take it's course. It is wonderful that your child is still nursing. He will be so much more secure and healthy for it. I applaud you for continuing to nurse him at 16 months of age.
B. S. RN CCM.
D.T. answers from Dothan on November 25, 2008
I too am still nursing my daughter who is 15 months. I would like to wean her, but she still loves to nurse (I still nurse her to sleep and in the night one time). My cycle did return after I started only nursing for naps and nightime. Maybe if you can reduce to only 3 nursing sessions a day, your cycle will return and you can get pregnant and continue to nurse. As for night weaning, I can't help you, I haven't figured that out yet either. I refuse to let my daughter cry it out.
K.S. answers from Oklahoma City on November 25, 2008
I have gotten pregnant 2 times while still nursing and have nursed through my pregnanies with no problem.
I nursed a lot and did not introduce anything other than breastmilk until my children were 9 months old and I was still able to get pregnant. I got pregnant after just one cycle both times.
I am currently 9 months pregnant and just now weaning our 2nd child.
T.P. answers from Tuscaloosa on November 25, 2008
My son was similar about sleeping, although I only nursed him once at night. I weaned him at 13 months. I don't know if he would have EVER truly wanted to stop. It was actually easier than I thought. I just replaced his feedings with milk and he didn't seem to mind at all. I did not start a cycle until 3 months after he weaned. I don't think I could have gotten pregnant while nursing...though maybe some can. Everyone's body is different. Good luck.
L.B. answers from Fayetteville on November 24, 2008
Whenever you are ready to wean him, you can best prepare by flipping through Dr. Sears' Nighttime Parenting Book. I think they also have a Sleep Book in their series, and they definitely have a Breastfeeding Book (these are the names of the books; that's why I'm capitalizing them). Dr. Sears has a lot of terrific alternatives to forcing babies to cry it out, and I remember some great suggestions he had for night weaning. These books are such a great investment in one's sanity! And in your child's happiness.
Couple of bucks on amazon.com for a used copy, and worth a million.
K.M. answers from Tulsa on November 25, 2008
In my experience my cycles came back after the children were eating so much. I'd think that all you'd need to do to make your cycle come back is to reduce the nursing enough or increase your son's food. The one time I did get pregnant while still nursing it turned out to be an ectopic pregnancy. (I don't think it's related to nursing at all. It's just that I did not carry pregnancies unless the previous child was weaned.) I would encourage you to continue nursing regardless.
H.M. answers from Florence on November 25, 2008
I got pregnant several times while still nursing (we have nine), but not until I had my cycle, and that did not usually occur until the baby was sleeping through the night. If you want another baby I would strongly urge you to cut out the night feedings, he is old enough to be getting enough food to satisfy him through the night. And, you want him in his own room and comfortably sleeping there through the night before you get pregnant again. He should not feel that the new baby "kicked him out" of your bed or room. I almost always had to endure some crying it out, but he will survive and so will you! You MUST be consistant and not give in. It should only take a few days, but he may cry for an hour before he gives in. Try some soothing music while he falls asleep in his own room, along with a dim night light.