Toddlers: 12 - 24 Months

Weaning cold turkey?

I've been trying the slow method and each time we make progress, DS gets sick or he is teething and then he is back to nursing 10 times a day!  I am nervous about weaning cold turkey, but my pedi has said he will get over it in a couple of days.  But DS loves to nurse for comfort as much as food, so I feel bad when he cries and gets upset.  Anyone with an older baby wean cold turkey?  How did it go?  
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Re: Weaning cold turkey?

  • CTri17CTri17
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
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    I'd do the slow method and just do it. Don't give in and let him nurse 10x a day.

    When DD asks to nurse  (we are down to 2x a day) I just tell and sign Milk All Gone until it is time to nurse

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  • CTri17CTri17
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    also it would be painful (for me at least ) if we went from 10x a day to none, and might cause problems like mastitis/clogged ducts etc.
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  • I agree with PP.  You just need to be strong and not give in and allow him to nurse, no matter what, outside of designated nursing times.
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  • I wouldn't do cold turkey. 
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  • DD was EBF and never EVER took a bottle so I was worried that we'd have trouble weaning.  

    We went cold turkey on Easter (12 mo 1ish weeks)  and haven't had any major trouble. She has been drinking cows milk since 11 mo and has been drinking water from a sippy since approx. 6 mo, so we had that going for us.  Toward the end we had been down to 3 - 4 nursing sessions a day.  Then the week before her first birthday we cut down to once in the morning and once before bed.  Then we just stopped.  

    There have been a handful of times where it would have been easier on me and DD to just nurse her, but I really had to commit to being done. Glad we made it this far, but am really glad to be done.

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  • If you do decide to quit cold turkey be prepared to pump for minimal relief or manually express.  Not only is massive engorgement uncomfortable but it can lead to clogged ducks and infection.  
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  • I tried Jay Gordon's night weaning method more than once and it was too confusing for LO. She nursed on demand, and was still up at least 4 times a night at 17 months old. I was trying to cut back on nursing not only for sleep but also because we have been TTC and midwife said it may help to cut out a nursing session or two. I decided that I had to go cold turkey.

    The first two days were really difficult especially at night. I felt terrible but I just kept telling her that Mommy's milk was all gone and she was a big girl now. By day four, she wasn't really asking to nurse anymore. It was as if she understood the milk being all gone more than she did when I tried to just night wean. 

    After weaning, she slept through the night for the first time ever. It is still rare for her to sleep all night and she usually gets up about once or twice a night. I always have a sippy cup of water in her bed or on her nightstand.

    It was painful for me the first few days. I pumped a very small amount in the beginning each day. Never more than an ounce or two at a time. Just enough to release some pressure. I also hand expressed some and massaged breasts in the shower. After about a week, my breasts were definitely adjusting but would sometimes get hard lumps of milk in them that were really sore. I just continued to hand express and massage. Also, it helped if LO didn't see my breasts while getting dressed or showering. It took a lot of determination and willpower on my part to wean, but we did it. 

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  • We did it. The first week was hard. He didn't mind it as much as I did.  I got sooo engorged. Worried about mastitis, the pain was so bad. Adi didn't mind, as long as I kept the girls covered up when I would give him a bottle...Sudafed helped to dry me up. I'm back to my 34B already. I was a 34D when I was nursing, and I'm pretty sure I got up to DD, because even my biggest bras wouldn't fit, when I got the weaning engorgement. Good luck!

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  • We just started the cold turkey weaning process. Today is day two and honestly now I don't know why I was so nervous to do this. The first night was horrible and tonight it went by so much easier, he has been a little extra moody and I just give him extra cuddles and loves. I know by this time next week it will all be worth it.

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  • I did cold turkey when DD was 14 months.  There were multiple factors that made me choose this as the best method for us.  I anticipated that it would be absolute murder for her and me.  It wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be.  DD (who was a BIG comfort nurser) didn't even ask for the breast after a couple of days.  It was like she had completely forgotten her nursing life!  I did get engorged, but nothing too painful.  When things started to get uncomfortable, I would only express enough to relieve the discomfort.
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  • My DS and I stopped at 20 months, cold turkey. He was only nursing for comfort during the day (maybe once, but usually never) and mostly in the night. I think it was more of a habit, and none of us were getting any sleep. It was just time. To claim our sanity back and to start taking medication that was not compatible with breastfeeding, we stopped cold turkey. Took about two weeks, he is fine, he is actually drinking better from sippy cups, which he really wouldn't before.

    I totally understand where you are at with weaning. I wanted to nurse for the first two years, because by then the immune system is fully developed.

    Your DS will prob. put up a little fight for the first couple of days, but its all new, so just be encouraging, it will work out. It's been almost a month for us and it is a very nice change of pace.

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