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How can I get my 14 month old to quit using me as a pacifier throughout the night?

Mas is almost 15 months old. He usually only nurses right before bed. Occasionally he nurses at nap time too. My issue is during the night though. He wakes up OFTEN and cries uncontrollably until he has boob. That's what he calls it, he yells for "boob". I know it's my own fault for always giving in from the beginning, but now I need help. He sleeps in my bed and there's no changing that, so that's a factor too. What can I do to help him stop nursing during the night?

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Asked by Jamie82507 at 11:41 AM on Nov. 15, 2008 in Toddlers (1-2)

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Answers (7)
  • Why dont you want him in his own bed? just curious. That is def a reason why he does it. Get a bottle and hold it CLOSE to your breast and give it to him. He is getting too old for a bottle so maybe you could try giving him a sippy cup during hte day. Also make sure he eats enough before bed to fill up so he;ll sleep better.

    Answer by Steph319 at 11:51 AM on Nov. 15, 2008

  • Jamie, it is going to be the hardest thing you will do with him at this point. The only thing you can do is try to transition him from "boob" to passy (soothie passies are just like the nipple). If he already takes a passy, Hold the passy in place so that he thinks that he is eating. Most of the time he will drift off to sleep. You could also try giving him water. 2 oz. should be more than enough. It should solve the problem in about a week.

    Answer by mypeanutbutter at 1:18 PM on Nov. 15, 2008

  • NOW about the sleeping in your bed. My son is 24 months old and has went through night terrors and many other things that had to do with his sleep patterens. Here are the questions. Do you have a play pen? If so start putting hiom in that RIGHT NEXT TO YOUR BED! That way when he wakes up you are still right there. Does he have his own room? If he does every night move the play pen 2 in. from your bed. HE WONT NOTICE! eventually you will work him into his own bedroom and it is a chich from there! Should take about 2 weeks. If he sleeps in the same room with you, which I am dealing with now,with you try putting a bed of his own in the room, or a crib.

    Answer by mypeanutbutter at 1:21 PM on Nov. 15, 2008

  • At this point the only thing you can do is let him cry to see if he will go back to sleep. It sometimes takes an hour, but it is worth it in the long run. Go in check on him every 5-7 min just to make sure that he is ok and to GIVE HIM THE PASSY. ( if he don't use one or doesnt like it don't force it). He has to know that you run the show, even if he says boob, it may mean that he just wants you in there. I am olny telling you this because I went 1 and a half years with out sleep, and it stinks.
    As last resort. Pleease talk to your doctor first. Meletonin is a natural substance that has NO SIDE EFFECTS. it is a chemical that your brain makes to let you know that you are sleepy. It is safe to give a child over 1 year old and worked for my son. I had him sleeping in his own bed in 1 week! But do ask you doctor about it. You can get it at any drug store. Over the counter. Maybe you could give it a try.


    Answer by mypeanutbutter at 1:21 PM on Nov. 15, 2008

  • Wow, we are the same! I started sleeping on the couch about 1 month ago. If Simone and I are sleeping in the same bed, she will want to breast feed all night! But if I am not there, it is much better. Sometimes she doesn't wake up at all. Other times she wakes up and DH gives her a drink of water. And occasionally, she will cry for 10-15 minutes. I think this is when she is teething.

    I don't really like sleeping on the couch but it is helping. As soon as she goes 1 week without needing water at night, then I will move back in. lol

    Answer by jcsscfam5 at 1:43 PM on Nov. 15, 2008

  • My 13 month old does this. I don't mind and he also sleeps in our bed. Sometimes they need that extra closeness. It is also possible your little one may be going through a growth spurt. All 3 of my sons did or are doing this since I am still breastfeeding my 13 month old.

    Answer by nyteowl at 6:18 PM on Nov. 15, 2008

  • I don't think she is looking for him to sleep in his own bed and why would anyone give a breastfed baby a bottle? Also, if she co-sleeping, I highly doubt she is a cry it out advocate.

    OP, are you wearing a shirt to bed. I used to sleep topless because it was so much easier to pop my daughter on the boob and go back to sleep! At one year she was still waking up so I started wearing a shirt and a sports bra to cover up the "milky" smell and when she woke up I gave a her a sippy of water. That way her sucking and cuddling needs were fulfilled! She did look for the boob at first, but having the sippy handy helped. She does sleep through the night now and when she does wake up, she just wants a cuddle and will usually go back to sleep as soon as she throws her arm on me.

    Answer by Cassandra_Lyn at 9:57 PM on Nov. 15, 2008

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