Weaning my 13 month old.

Ok, so I want to wean my 13 month old daughter from breastfeeding.. I am at my wits end! If she isn't nursing she is crying.. It's so frustrating. She won't go to sleep unless she is nursing and won't stay asleep unless she is nursing. If I lay her down she wakes up instantly. It's making me HATE breastfeeding. I feel like it isn't emotionally healthy for either of us to be getting so frustrated and no sleep. I cannot sleep many more nights on my sides so she can nurse all night :/ I just want my boobs back and I feel awful for feeling this way but I can't help it!!

Moms Expertise
    How long does she go in between feeding times? Do you use pacifiers? I was against it but recently found it helped.
      Is she okay without nursing during the day? If she's okay with that then I don't think weaning is the problem, I think it's a sleep issue. She needs to find another way to sooth herself to sleep.

      Does she have her own room/bed that she sleeps in? I'm not against co-sleeping toddlers at all but it might be really hard for her to sleep right next to you without nursing. It's too tempting. You could try to put her to sleep in her own bed with a pacifier or something else that soothes her. I would probably nurse her to sleep still (you don't want too much change at once) then lay her down. If she wakes up/doesn't fall asleep you may need to set up a sleep training system to help her learn. If Avery is having trouble falling asleep but she's obviously fine (fed, changed, etc.) we let her cry for 5 min, go in and comfort, wait for 7 min, go in and comfort, wait 10min. If she's not asleep after the 10min wait we usually pick her up and do something else for 20min before putting her back down. That's only happened twice though. The first day of doing this was really tough on all of us, but she learned REALLY quick. Withing 48hrs she'd learned how to suck on her favorite fingers to fall asleep. Baby's are amazing :)

      Most importantly I don't think you're doing anything wrong. It's perfectly natural to want to stop nursing at a certain point. Even mama dogs will push their puppies away when they're tired of nursing. Mom's are supposed to get tired of nursing once their babies are developed enough to get all their nutrients from other sources. For some people this is at 12 months and for others it's at 3 years. Listening to your own body and emotions is important. You didn't do anything wrong and you don't have to feel bad about it.

      She goes to daycare during the day, and takes a bottle and is okay, I work 11 hour days so she goes awhile in between, when I get home I don't even get to play with my son because she instantly is trying to pull my shirt off, I feel bad, like I'm neglecting my son because I have to constantly be nursing. She won't even look at a bottle or paci when I'm around. I'm pretty sure she is nursing just for comfort. She has her own bed, not her own room :/
      That's tough! I feel for you. It does sound like a comfort thing. She probably misses you while you're gone and knows that nursing is the best way to get you all to herself.

      I would just start slow. If she is a constant nurser once you get home I would start by regulating her to one or two feedings. Give her 10-15min each side and then try to just play with her or get her interested in something else. There will probably be tears, but that's normal. Stay strong - tuck that shirt in, lol :)

      Hopefully she'll learn that she can still get time with you even if she's not nursing. Once that's calm and regulated you can start subbing nursing sessions for bottles.

      You're in for a rough few days but hang in there. Your little girl will be just fine and so will you. Change is hard but worth it :)
        It sounds like she wants you more than the breast. She may just love the special one on one time she gets with her mama.

        If you want to wean I suggest dropping one feed at a time and wait a few days and then drop another and so on. Slow weaning is better for you and your health.

        When you stop breastfeeding what are you going to replace it with? Formula? Cow milk? Something else?
        About Courtney
        Current: Dupo, Illinois
        Birth: May 24
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