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Hi ladies, I wanted to come visit this board to seek some input. I have a 10 1/2 month old daughter and will be starting the weaning process in about a month. She has been exclusively breastfed and has never taken a bottle. I am just now kind of getting her used to a sippy. It is one of those Nuby ones that looks like a sports bottle. Anyway, she has been taking a few sips of water from it these last few days if I hold it to her mouth. However, I'm concerned she won't take all the whole milk she needs from the sippy when I start weaning since she just sips on it. I am also concerned since I usually nurse her for nap time and bed time she may refuse to go to sleep without nursing. Do any of you ladies have any ideas to help relax her for sleep times other than nursing that has worked for you? Any tips or advice on weaning is much appreciated as well! I think I may need all the help I can get. Thanks!
I weaned Kirsty about 6 weeks ago, up until then she refused every bottle & cup on the market. Then overnight she just accepted her bottle and we haven't looked back. I nursed Kirsty to sleep every naptime and nighttime waking until she was 6ish months when she accepted her soother! This allowed me to feed her, then put her in her cot awake with her dummy and she'd settle off for a sleep by herself.
In my experience with Kirsty, she wont take formula from her "water cup"... it may be worth while one she is used to water in the nuby, to invest in a completely seperate, different cup to try her with milk in? You might not want to try these things, or you might try to adapt them to suit you and your little girl, and that's perfectly fine. You need to do what is right for you and your sweet girl.
Does she take a soother? That may help for naptimes. Or a lovie? Favourite blanket? If she doesn't use anything like this, perhaps try to introduce one? Just so she has something to replace the comfort of you nursing her for naptimes? Does she nurse to sleep or just nurse before sleeping? Does she fall asleep on you or in her cot?
If she nurses to sleep, it will be hard work to break this but it's not impossible! I would start with bedtime as she will be more tired, and nurse until just before she is asleep, cuddle her and use the same sleep cue phrase - ours is "sleepy time, darling", I whisper it in Kirsty's ear before laying her down with her soother and her blanket.
If you are like me, and are concerned about her having a blanket in her crib (kirsty used to have a moses basket sized blanket, until I went to check her one day during her nap and she had it wrapped around her head ) Now I give her a muslin square which I knot in the middle. She can't do any damage with it!
Weaning from the breast... the way I was advised to do this by my Health Visitor, was to pick one feed per day and offer Kirsty her feed from a bottle (cup in your case), give her BM to begin with. I was to offer the bottle, and if she refused, leave it 30minutes and re-offer, leave 30minutes and re-offer, and do this until her next feed is due - she will either continue to refuse, whereby the next feed would be a BF, or accept and still, the next feed is a BF.
After a week I was to do this for 2 feeds, but not consecutive feeds, so she has a break and a "normal" feed inbetween them. I hope this makes sense, but if it doesn't, feel free to question me
Kirsty was on 4 daytime feeds when I weaned so I was to do this as a 4 week process, dropping 1 BF per week, replacing with a bottle. However, Kirsty decided to wean overnight and just took 100% BFs one day and 100% bottles the next. The bottles were a mix of formula/BM for 2 days then I gave 100% formula.
Once you have your LO used to BM in the cup, slowly decrease the amount of BM and subsitute that amount with formula, until you reach 100% formula.
(just an afterthought... I keep saying formula, but if it's cow's milk you are going to use, then you know I mean cow's milk rather than formula?! I only had this thought after my posting!!)
All of that info. was very helpful! Thank-you! Yeah, she has never taken a soother but I think I might try a little blanket for a luvy for comfort. She has this little rattle stuffed thing that has a little square blanket attached to it so that may help. She usually nurses and either pulls herself off or I pull her off when she is done sucking and she is usually semi-awake when I put her in her crib. So I know she knows how to self soothe to sleep but I know me nursing her has relaxed her to that point. I don't plan on doing formula as I am starting hopefully next month at about 11 1/2 months and her pedi told me to go straight to whole milk at that point. I think I will try one feeding at a time giving her whole milk instead of BM for a few days & not consecutive feedings like you suggested. Thank-you again for all your input!
What is her bedtime routine like? Do you have set order you do certain things so she knows it is the build up to bed?
You could try changing it slightly little by little to break that part of bedtime. Say for example, you do bath, BF, bed... you could do half BF, bath, half BF, bed for a while. Then perhaps introduce a story before the second half BF so she may learn to give up the BFing part easier, and you could give her milk in her cup before bed whilst you do storytime.
This part of the weaning process was my biggest fear! We do the same bedtime routine each night, quiet play downstairs after dinner, bath with songs, whilst getting dried/PJs on we only whisper so it's very quiet, she has a cuddle with daddy, bottle from me, cuddle and bed.
Sometimes it's difficult to break a habbit you know works! KUP on how things go, I hope you stick around and post with us!
Yes, she has a night time routine. It is bath, baby massage with lotion and pj's, quiet lullaby music in her room while I nurse and rock her. I am thinking I'll try your idea about giving her a sippy with milk for night time. Maybe I will give it to her right before her bath since she associates rocking with nursing it may be easier if I try a quiet story time or something during that time instead. I am so nervous cuz her routine works like a charm now and she is usually sound to sleep quickly and sleeping through the night so good. Thanks again for the feedback, I will keep you posted and will probably have more questions along the way.