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Ideas needed!!!!! (long)

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  • Ideas needed!!!!! (long)

    My lovely little man is eight months old, happy, healthy, and smart.... he is also quite possibly the worst sleeper EVER! OK, so to give you an idea here is the average day. (times vary, no real 'schedule' as such, just seems to fall at these times most days)

    4:30 wakes
    6:30 Feed, 10-15 min nap
    9:30 Feed, Nap 20 min
    12:00 Feed
    2:30 Feed Nap 20 min
    4:00 Feed
    5:00 - 5:30 Feed, Bed
    6:00 Feed
    8:00 Feed
    9:00 Feed
    10:00 Feed
    12:00 Feed
    2:00 - 4:30 Feed - CONSTANTLY

    He is pretty much asleep all night.... if I feed him. If either DH or I try and get him back to sleep with cuddles, rocking or the sling he just wakes up fully and then its hours before he will go back to sleep, however if I feed him when he starts to wind up then he will go straight back to sleep, that is of course what got us into this mess! I really don't mind feeding him a few times a night but it has been eight months of this now.... worse when he is teething! He co-sleeps which is lovely, we have tried him in a bassinet but he wont sleep unless we are there.

    He has an early bedtime only because he cannot seem to stay awake past 5. I have tried a later nap time but if he is put down any time after 3 he just takes it as bed and then wakes up earlier! Dont mind the early start so much, but really need more sleep to handle it! As far as the short naps go, he wakes up smiling and fully refreshed.... no problems with that.

    We have tried to get him to go to sleep without the breast but he can and will scream forever.... no exaggeration. We have tried but we have never persisted past fifteen min of full on screaming and sweating (all in arms of course) before giving him the breast. We REALLY are not interested in CIO (although I assume you are all the same).

    He has never slept for longer than four hours at a time and that was when he first came home from the hospital... from four months he has not slept longer than two hours.

    I am pretty sure he does not have GER as we have tried infant gaviscol and made no difference. Oh and yes he is on solids (I was hoping that might help). He is a great eater and has three meals a day now plus snacks..... hasnt dropped any milk feeds though - as you can see!

    Any ideas? I am really at the end of my tether, I simply cannot keep this up! I do try and sleep through some of the feeds but am a very light sleeper and its really impossible. I need help. I am falling apart and feel like I am not being as good a Mum as I could be because I just have no energy during the day. I feel like maybe MIL was right and we have created a monster with the AP style parenting.... ok so I know thats not true but I am starting to second guess myself. I am up to try anything.
    Last edited by mumtoone; 06-15-2008, 01:33 AM.

  • #2
    Hi. Have you tried gently inserting a finger to break the suction once DS has fallen asleep? I have to do this or my little one will stay connected and suckle all night long...and let me add that sometimes I have to break it two or three times before he will be content to be without it. If not, try that, while holding him so that he 'knows' that although the suckling is gone you are not. I think that is why my DS usually needs two or three goes before he relaxes back into sleep. Sweet dreams and I hope that helps.


    • #3
      Thank you abundance. We already do that one unfortunately.... I wouldn't be getting ANY sleep if that wee life saver didn't work! Yeah, he feeds for about ten min each time then when he slows the sucking and is obviously asleep I pull away, or sometimes he does as he prefers to sleep on his tummy. When he does the cluster feeding in the morning there is NO WAY he will let you get away, he is in for the long haul! I have also tried feeding him almost to sleep so that he can learn to fall asleep without the breast in the mouth, it always ends in tears and he wakes up so the whole thing has to be started again...... he is a real boobie bandit and no substitute will do!


      • #4
        Originally posted by mumtoone View Post
        he is also quite possibly the worst sleeper EVER!
        i think my ds2 will give you a fight for that title! so, i don't have much advice b/c i was miserable w/the NP until after he turned 2

        the one thing i do see in your schedule is the early bedtime. he's essentially sleeping from 5p - 4a if i understand you correctly. that is an incredibly long time, imo! i think i would probably try getting that bumped much later, like closer to 8p. slow increments, trying to keep him up half hour later every few days. it may not reduce the nightwakings, but he may, at least, sleep until 6 or 7a.


        • #5
          He is pretty much asleep all night.... if I feed him
          Hello, I have an 8m old also, who isn't quite as into night nursing as yours but has some of the same traits. He is very quick to be worked up when the breast is not presented in time! He yells bloody murder within 30 secs if I am not there, hubby will not do! BUT that is only sometimes. If I can make sure he is in deep enough sleep I can sneak away. I also have a 3yr old and babysit a 2yr old so that can be tricky during the day. As a result he dosn't get the quality of naps an only child can get--but not your boy heh?

          A couple of questions. Do you have a quiet house? Noise can actually help babies continue to realize they are safe and with their families during sleep. Does he respond to motion? Do strollers, car rides, carrier rides lull him asleep? Would he sleep longer if you took off the shirt you were wearing all day and put it beside him? Can you introduce things slowly? Even though he gets upset, don't immediately give him the breast, wait 30 secs, not much but enough to show him what you are doing. Then maybe next time wait a minute. Never that much to make him think that you will never nurse him, but enough to give him a second to reorganize his attitude (" Oh, mommy is right there, and she always nurses me when I want, but I am just so tired now so ZZZZZZZ") This has taken my son a month or two to be OK with, but if you don't move slowly towards your intentions, the only other option is abrupt, and babies do not like that! Keep trying, I so hear you need sleep!


          • #6
            Have you thought of making bed time later? Around that age I think ours was going down 11ish. He wouldn't sleep an awful long stretch so it was better for us if he went down later.

            He's also not sleeping much during the day, around 2 hours would be ideal at some point during the day.

            What kind of solids are you trying? Some are better than others when it comes to sleeping.


            • #7
              PaxMamma - hmmmmm, so we have some more of this to look forward to then?
              I agree that his bedtime is very early. We have tried moving it every fifteen min (he used to fall asleep at 4!) but once we reached 5:30 we hit a brick wall and he just has a major meltdown due to tiredness.... SO we tried a later nap in the hope that would push his bedtime out but he will not wake back up from a nap if its after 2:30, he just cries and cries until fed back to sleep. I would LOVE to have him around more in the evening especially for DH as he tends to miss him when he gets home from work! He just seems wired to fall asleep at that time.

              naomifrederickmd - the house is pretty quiet as its just the two of us at home.... he sleeps in a hammock in the living room though for his naps so gets to hear me pottering about, and I always have music on. He will not sleep ANYWHERE but at home. He has been known to stay awake for six hours as he refused to sleep in the car while we were out. Same with the pram. He will however fall asleep in the sling if we are out shopping... only if very tired though. He is just so heavy now that its not an option to go for walks with him in the sling anymore. I will try the holding off little by little, that could work with him. Thanks.

              PoshMama - I would love him to be sleeping more during the day!!!! Oh how wonderful it would be to actually be able to take a shower or something!!!! He just doesnt sleep longer than 20 min, no matter how tired he is when he goes down that seems to be all he needs? He isnt actually tired if you know what I mean?
              He is pretty much eating anything and everything now... we are doing BLW (baby led weaning) so he just eats what we do. last night was pasta, his fav!

              Sorry to put down all your ideas. We feel like we have tired everything. Maybe I am just destined not to get any sleep for awhile yet??


              • #8
                That was useful information, you weren't----
                Sorry to put down all your ideas. We feel like we have tired everything. Maybe I am just destined not to get any sleep for awhile yet
                I have heard about some kids who are not big on sleeping, maybe yours is. Could you describe how he falls asleep at night? Where, then do you get up etc... Is he cold or hot, Are his PJ's an irritating fabric? Have you made sure he has no food sensitivities?
                Have you tried a Mai-tai instead of a sling? Just doing some investigating!


                • #9
                  Just wanted to give you hugs My son is 5mo and is turning into your son too. Never naps well (I have a toddler at home too) and is up a lot now at night....

                  I just try to focus on the light at the end of the tunnel. um...I mean the sleep at the end of the tunnel.


                  • #10
                    naomifrederickmd - Thank you for understanding. I sometimes feel like I ask for help and then just shoot down the ideas.... Its just that we do make a point of being informed parents so a lot of the ideas we get have already been explored.

                    To answer you questions:- He sleeps in a merino sleep sack with the appropriate undergarments for the weather. He has sensitive skin so is always in natural fabrics.
                    He falls asleep within ten min by feeding lying on the bed. I then just roll over and leave. For naps he is fed in a rocking chair then put in the hammock.
                    I have been wondering if he gets reflux from tomatoes so have gone off them (we are into day four) in the hope there may be an improvement. He doesnt seem to wake in pain though. He wakes, whimpers, waits.... if I dont arrive with some mummy milk pronto then he sits up, cries then wakes up fully. So I dont think its related to him being uncomfortable in any way... worth looking into though. Any ideas how I would go about finding what it could be? He eats such a varied diet and of course so do I.
                    Oh and I have a Mai-tai (favorite buy EVER!) but have a bad back and he is now 10kg so can only wear him for short periods at a time.

                    Thank you for taking such an interest. I appreciate your time.

                    Bluebonnet - to you too! I hope that you do have better luck with your son! If I could do it again with DS I would have introduced more variety in the way he falls asleep. I think that could have helped a lot with the problems I am having now. Just a thought!!! GL!


                    • #11
                      Just some ideas I'm throwing out there.

                      Mine slept best in the sling during the day. Also for naps they would be longer if I slept with him, vs reading, going online etc.

                      Some kids don't sleep as much as others, as much as it makes you to hear it, my friend's boy goes to be early, sleeps till almost noon THEN has a nap, I'd so lack to slap her some days LOL

                      We found oatmeal in the morning before nap helped, banana again can make one sleepy, potatoes with cheese with dinner helped

                      If it's too late for afternoon nap, keeping them awake a bit longer may help for bedtime, we've found the late afternoon nap although at the time good, would equal an awful bedtime, so more tears all round in the end.

                      Kids also have their own clocks, my DS is a morning boy, no matter what we do, change time zones by 8 hours and still! Like his body clock knows when it's 6am. If I find a cure, I'll let you know. Try to figure out what your boy's clock is doing, and try not to go too much against it

                      And ((((Hugs)))) One day I promise he'll sleep, he'll be 16 but he'll sleep............ and then the bucket of cold water is waiting, at least for mine LOL