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2 Bumps

When crying it out doesn't work?

In a recent attempt to get our one-year-old to sleep in longer stretches and give up the comfort nursing she wants (she wakes the first time about 3 to 4 hours after falling asleep at night), I let her cry...first for 5 minutes, then I went and soothed her and put her back down. She screamed for about 3 minutes and then it was silent and I thought, oh, that was easy. 10 minutes later she screamed for another 3 minutes and then it was silent for 15 minutes. BTW, she has never taken a bottle or paci. By the 4th time I felt that she legitimately needed something...either she was uncomfortable with teething, was wet or dirty or genuinely wanting liquid. So, I nursed her, she chugged (and I felt guilty), and then went right back to sleep. I would like to cut out one nursing session at night and so I figured this was how to do it...was I wrong? What do you think my baby was trying to tell me? That she's not ready yet?

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 8:43 PM on Jul. 12, 2010 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (9)
  • She is just used to the comfort of being nursed, what I would do is try and give her a bottle with some water in it.

    Answer by looovemybabies at 8:50 PM on Jul. 12, 2010

  • I think you're doing great! Just keep trying what you've been doing. In my experience the time in between crying becomes longer and longer as the child learns to sooth themselves. Then again, there is nothing more precious than bonding and nursing your infant! Sometimes I regret cutting out those night time feeds. Good luck!

    Answer by JackieSuzanne at 8:50 PM on Jul. 12, 2010

  • @ 1 mine did not need a feeding at all at night....they sleept right oldest was only two mos. old when he started to sleep thru the night.

    So IMO you should not give her anything or pick her up. (or @ least fase her out )
    Go in and check if the diper needs changing and do it right there in her bed, then place your hand on her chest to calm her back down and she might fall back to sleep......if it tears too much on your heart strings, you could try to soothe her by holding her, but I would say you should fase her out of the nightly eatings.

    Answer by Nynne at 8:52 PM on Jul. 12, 2010

  • Just keep in mind that whatever sleep training method you go with, it's going to take a few really-hard (possibly heart-breaking) sleepless nights before you start to see it work. So hang in there.

    A healthy 1-year-old shouldn't need a feeding in the middle of the night so long as they've eaten enough before bed time. A little water would take care of a genuine thirst need.

    ...and from my own experience, it's easy as a mom who wants to care for their child, to assume they're sick, or thirsty, or something horrible is happening, when really, they just want the comfort of your company. It's a tricky balance, but I bet you, as the mom, know your kid's different cries. You really can start to hear the difference when they genuinely do need your help, or when they're just annoyed that their room is boring.

    Answer by mogencreative at 9:14 PM on Jul. 12, 2010

  • Okay, first of all she may not be ready to go that long. So be open to that. But here's what we did:
    Step1 - Fussing, do nothing, just listen
    Step 2- Actual crying. I stay OUT OF SIGHT- Completely out of the room. Someone else (daddy?) went in and tried patting, humming etc to sooth
    Step 3 - Still crying. Daddy picked him up and rocked, sang, walked etc.
    Step 4- Still crying. I went in and nursed him.

    The trick is that they can smell the milk. So YOU going in there is shooting yourself in the foot. Even if it wasnt what she wanted, it is NOW!. LOL. Is there anyone else in the house that can help you?

    Answer by new_mom808 at 9:28 PM on Jul. 12, 2010

  • There are some good suggestions on how to night wean a breastfeeding one year old, with out using CIO, at

    I have a 12 mo old who is still nursing during the night.  I've read over these suggestions and am considering trying it!


    Answer by maggiemom2000 at 9:54 PM on Jul. 12, 2010

  • You might want to wait until this major time for growth spurts and teeth is over. some children might not be hungry at night, but others can certainly be especially during the 12 month spurt.

    Answer by amileegirl at 10:19 PM on Jul. 12, 2010

  • We avoided this. We co-slept, until Alyssa was sleeping through the night. It was easy for me to doze/sleep when she nursed at night. I don't think that CIO is every healthy.

    Answer by rkoloms at 5:52 AM on Jul. 13, 2010

  • Sorry, ever healthy (not enough coffee)

    Answer by rkoloms at 5:53 AM on Jul. 13, 2010

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