Drop The Night Feeding

13 Replies
BeccaBaby1 - May 22

My little girl is 4 months and she sleeps from about 8 pm - 2am, eats, goes back to sleep until about 6 am. I think she's doing wonderful on this schedule and I don't mind the night feeding but I don't want it to become a learned habit instead of a hungry necessity. A couple of times I've tried just comforting her and putting her back to bed, or trying to rock her back to sleep, but that hasn't done the trick. She certainly seems hungry and if she needs it I want her to have it, but again I don't want to get her into a bad habit that will be difficult to break later. Any advice?

 

Kiersten - May 22

Becca, when my ds was 4 months I dropped his late night feeding (10:00) and that first night I did he slept 11 hours!!! He now eats at 7:00, quiet play, jammies, story and bed. (He's almost 6 months now) If she's definitely hungry, then she still needs that feeding. Maybe try cluster feeding before bed? I've heard that works for some...sorry I wasn't much help. Hope you find the balance that works for you two. Good luck!

 

kimberly - May 23

All 3 of my babies still had a bottle during the night at 4 months. Some babies need it and some don't. I would give her a bottle if it were me.

 

Crystal83 - May 23

My lo had her night feeding until she was about 6 months old, although; sometimes she slept right through anyway. I've had no problems with keeping a night feeding as long as baby goes right back to sleep after. I have noticed if I feed my dd more before bed time she does sleep longer. Her bedtime is between 9-10 pm and she sleeps till about 8-9 am, but once in awhile she wakes up between 4-5 am for a bottle. I won't feed her before 4 am unless she is adamant about it, I usually just put her pacifier in her mouth and make her more comfortable (sometimes she rolls around too much and wakes herself up) and she usually goes right back to sleep.She is almost 9 mos. old now. It all depends on the baby and how the mom feels about getting up at night I guess. This is my 3rd dd so getting up in the night doesn't bother me like it used to with my first. Never been so tired in my life as I was with my first, lol! I pretty much let all of my plans go out the window and just go with the flow until about 1 years old, because by then they know what bedtime is and definetly don't need a night feeding.

 

BeccaBaby1 - May 23

Thanks for your replies. I think I'll try cluster feeding and if that doesn't work I'll just keep the feeding for another month or so. I don't mind getting up with her and she does seem hungry.

 

DDT - May 24

Read "The Baby Whisperer"....great book!

 

Cathy2 - May 30

I think it's really important not to place your own time lines on the baby. By deciding that you will not feed int he middle of the night as of x months old, is really ignoring your childs ability to know if they are hungry and what to do about it. Many babies need a feed between 4 and 5 am till they are a year old. They just have little tummies. I wouldn't worry about creating a "habit"...My daughter is 8 months old and goes from having one bottle night to sleeping straightt through on and off. It often depends on whether she's teething or not (in which case she may not have eaten as much during the day as usual) or whether she's going through a growth spurt. But they know their bodies and they most certainly know if they're hungry. I always say that if I offer the bottle and she drinks 3 oz or more, she's doesn't just want comfort..she's hungry!

 

BeccaBaby1 - June 1

Cathy, I certainly am not imposing a time line on my little one. I'm nurturing her and feeding her when she is hungry.

 

Malica - June 1

I'm not looking to start an argument, but why then are you looking to drop the night feeding if you have already said that she is hungry when she wakes up in the middle of the night?

 

BeccaBaby1 - June 2

Malica. No fight taken :) If you read my question and my subsequent response I think you'll see that I'm now not looking to drop the feeding. Rather I wanted some rea__surance that I wasn't doing something that wasn't best for my little girl. I tried soothing her back to sleep without a feeding to see if it actually wasn't hunger... but as I said above that doesn't seem to be that case. The reason behind this post is that my younger siblings were sleeping through the night at 13 weeks, my sister in law's son at 11 weeks, and my sister's boys at 9 weeks. So, you can see why I might feel concerned that at 4 months my kiddo is still getting up. Also, my pediatrician said that at this age she is physically able to sleep for 10+ hrs without a feeding. This mom stuff is confusing and guilt-ridden (especially for a first timer) because no matter what you choose to do someone says you're doing it wrong. So, that's why I came here. I wanted to hear that I wasn't being an irresponsible mother by feeding her in the night. And that's why perhaps I was a bit defensive with Cathy, because if anything I feel like I've thrown the timeline (the typical one in my family) out the window. Whew, sorry that was a long answer to a simple question.

 

J.J. - June 2

Setting all this snarkiness aside, Becca, it's a totally legit question b/c some things become a habit, but not really a necessity, as you mention in your question. My question is: are you b___st feeding or giving a bottle, and in either case, is your daughter legitimately eating? I think if she's consuming 2-3 ounces or nursing strongly for a while, then she needs this feeding for at least the short term....I can recall my pediatrician telling me to please stop "sleep feeding" my daughter a bottle at 10 pm (we were putting her down at 8 pm, then feeding her a bottle before we went to sleep, to get her thru the nite). This was around 4 months of age. I said "okay" and totally ignored her b/c this is what we did w/my son and it worked for him. We finally cut that feeding out a month ago. She's now 7 months and will go from 8 pm to 6 am as long as we stuff her full of food at dinner (both stage one soilds and bottle). Bottom line, go with your gut, keep the extra feeding in if you feel she needs it. Otherwise, try cutting it out and move on to better/longer sleep habits.

 

BeccaBaby1 - June 2

Thank you J.J., your words seem wise! I nurse my little one and she heartily gulps down on both sides. So, I think her hunger is legit. I will reevaluate at an unspecified later date. Now... I'm putting this post to bed and I will not let it get up for a night feeding. It'll just have to cry it out into the forum archives.

 

iemc19 - June 2

LOL!!!

 

Crystal83 - June 2

LOL! Goodnight!

 

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