Nighttime Nursing & Parenting

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This post was written as part of The Breastfeeding Cafe’s Carnival. For more info on the Breastfeeding Cafe, go to For more info on the Carnival or if you want to participate, contact Claire at clindstrom2 {at} gmail {dot} com. Today’s post is about nighttime parenting and nursing. Please read the other blogs in today’s carnival listed below and check back for more posts July 18th through the 31st!

The hubby works second shift so he’s never home (during the week) when it’s time to put Ryan to bed. I’m usually in bed too before he gets home…. with my cuddle bug 🙂 I <3 co-sleeping.

I always put Ryan to bed by nursing him. I’ve done this from the very beginning… for awhile I stopped because I got worried by what all “those people” (what people? I don’t know) were telling me. Worried I was creating a bad habit. Worried no one else would ever be able to put him to sleep. And now I say–bad habit? That he wants his mama before bed? I don’t think so. It’s not like he’s going to nurse forever. And other people putting him to bed? My husband does just fine for naps while I’m at work and he puts Ryan down sometimes on the weekends too. Ryan even had his very first overnight at my mom’s a couple weeks ago and he did great! 10 points for nighttime nursing, 0 points for “those people.”

Ryan usually goes to bed around 7pm and most of the time he wakes up one hour later, almost exactly. I always go in and nurse him again–so he’s good and full for the night ahead! He wakes up again (yep, again. He’s almost 7 months old) around 10pm so that’s usually when I just head to bed. We cuddle up and I let him latch on. For awhile I had trouble co-sleeping because he was so restless and he woke me up constantly through the night. Once we decided to swaddle him again, I haven’t had that issue and we both sleep great. People ask how many times he wakes up, how many times he nurses, how long he sleeps at one time and honestly? I couldn’t tell ya. I have NO idea. I never look at the clock anymore. Besides, if he wakes up to nurse or just because, I basically roll toward him, let him latch on, and I’m back asleep. I sleep wonderfully.

I pretty much keep him on one side all night. Around 5am is when he does get a bit restless and doesn’t seem to want to latch on anymore… so I just jump over to the other side of him, let him latch on to the nicely engorged side, he nurses, and sleeps about 2 more hours until around 7am!

I love our nighttime routine. (HA! He just woke up as I typed that. BRB!) So yep, that was his 10:20pm wake up where I usually go to sleep with him.  Yes, we’ve tried the crib. For 4 nights. He woke up once an hour and by the time you get him back to sleep and then fall back asleep yourself, it’s basically almost time for him to wake up again. Steve and I took turns sleeping on the floor in his room. The wood floor. For 4 nights. We both work and this wasn’t happening for us. Back to co-sleeping!

“Aren’t you worried he’ll always want to sleep with you?” No.

“What if he does?” What’s wrong with that? Because society tells you your baby needs to sleep alone, in the other room? He doesn’t need to, we enjoy co-sleeping, and it works for us.

“Don’t you need alone time with your husband?” He works 2nd shift anyway and I’m asleep before he’s even home. But anyway, we get our alone time, we don’t need a bed for it. Can’t you get creative? 😉

Honestly, before I had Ryan I never thought I’d co-sleep. It was one of those parenting things I wouldn’t do. Things change–alot. And I love co-sleeping 🙂

How do nighttime parenting and nursing look for you??? If you don’t co-sleep, how often are you nursing at night? Do you nurse to sleep?


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9 comments to Nighttime Nursing & Parenting

  • Kenisha

    I co-slept with my daughter from day 5. It was something I thought I would never do either, especially since we had renovated her room and made it into a beautiful nursery. I had had a C-section and felt like the getting up and going from our room to her room every 2 hours, was too much for me (and it hurt my incision). My daughter turned 14 months on July 15th and she is finally fully weaned and in her own crib(for 2 weeks now). She(we) would go to bed at 9, and I’d put her to sleep by nursing her. Then she would wake up every couple of hours tossing and turning, and she’d just latch on and nurse. This went on up until 2 weeks ago! I just felt that I was too tired to keep doing it, I succeeded with the 1 year mark, and my husband and I really wanted our bed back. I was having a difficult time getting a good night’s sleep and so was she. So I just put her in her crib one night when she was getting sleepy, kissed her, told her good night, and sat in the rocking chair until she went to sleep. She played for one full hour until she realized she was tired and I was not gonna take her out of the crib. That night she woke up 4 times, but I didn’t nurse her, I just went in and comforted her till she went back to sleep. The next night, I did the same thing, and she played for 30 minutes till she went to sleep; she woke up 4 times again but I didnt nurse her and just comforted her. Next night she cried for 15 minutes at bedtime for me to get her, but I just sat in rocking chair singing to her and then she was out. She woke up twice and I didnt even get out of bed for those cries, she just fell back asleep 5 minutes later. The fourth nite, I kissed her, rocked her, sang to her, and put her in her crib. She cried for 5 minutes and then was knocked out. She only woke up once at 5am, but fell asleep after 5 minutes again. So far the crib is going well, we both get our much needed sleep, and she didnt want to sleep with me forever! But I wouldn’t change any of it if I did it all over again! There’s nothing like that little body next to you, and nothing like knowing you gave your little one the best headstart in life!!


  • I love love love co-sleeping with Mason. B isn’t/wasn’t a fan but I think he’ll get used to it. If not I’ll do what I’ve been doing every time I’m there sleep in our bed with M and then when M wakes up for his feeding I go into our spare bedroom and sleep with him there. B usually comes up to bed around this time. B always ends up waking up cause we’re not there and he joins us in the other room. I think he secretly likes co-sleeping he’s just afraid of rolling over him!


  • My little guy still nurses to sleep and we co-sleep as well. He also nurses during the night about two times…back to sleep…and first thing in the morning and back to sleep for about another hour.

    It’s worked great and like Ryan, my little man just slept better this way. We tried the crib for a while too, but he would wake up every hour or two, so I just brought him into bed.

    My hubby enjoys co-sleeping now too, unless he gets kicked. LOL!


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