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  • Feeling Frustrated w/ Constant Waking

    Hello! I'm new to this site and am really anxious to get some feedback. My 8 month old wakes up at LEAST 10 times a night... more often around 20 times, and only takes two to three 30 minute naps in a a day. She cosleeps with us, so that minimizes how "awake" I have to be to nurse her back to sleep (which usually doesn't take very long), but I'm still exhausted. I feel totally paralyzed! I feel like it could be a million things: habit, from me nursing her to sleep all the time, an allergy, a food sensitivity, reflux. I've even started to feel like I'm not meeting my little wakeful baby's stimulation needs during the day, and that's what causing it. I'm so tired, though, so I struggle to get into a good routine with her. We do a nice bedtime routine nightly, and have experimented with bed clothes, too!
    I don't know what I'm hoping to get here, but I'm feeling a little lost and VERY overwhelmed! I don't know anyone else whose baby wakes up as much as my little one, and it makes me feel a bit isolated. Not to mention the fact that my parenting style (attachment, of course) varies GREATLY from that of my friends. Any thoughts?

  • #2
    Hello, Lusa'sMom
    A couple of thoughts, questions. Have you attempted to offer other types of falling back to sleep help? How is her behavior during the day? Has this always been the case? Is she teething? Did she recently learn how to crawl? Is she nursing less during the day? Eating new solids?

    My 8 month old wakes up at LEAST 10 times a night... more often around 20 times, and only takes two to three 30 minute naps in a a day.
    My 8mo old takes 3 or 4- 1/2 hour to 45min naps which I think is less then some babies too. Also I have had to work hard at gently discouraging the amount of night nursing he did do so at one point he might of figured its not worth the bother! I don't refuse him if he insists but don't automatically offer when he wakes either. He wakes four or five times a night usually at 10pm, 1am, 3am, 5am 6am..and then he is up. Its a process!
    Tell me more please!

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    • #3
      More Info

      Thanks for your response! I've tried to pat her or shush her to sleep at night instead, and she is up for forever (and usually won't go to sleep without nursing). She does mainly nurse to sleep, but she fights sleep so badly! She is a pretty happy during the day most of the time, which is great! Her frequent waking has pretty much always been the case, although she did go through a period for a few months where she only woke three to four times a night. She was one of those "every hour on the hour" nursers as a newborn! Then, it got much better around 3 months. Around 5 months she started waking up with this frequency. She is teething now, but it hasn't really increased in the last few weeks She's not crawling yet (she's a BIG girl... 23 pounds and almost 30 inches at 8.5 months!... it slows her down!), but has started scooting some. She isn't really nursing differently during the day. She nurses ever 1.5 to 3 hours, sometimes longer. I try to load her up
      I hate to say it, but I'm glad to hear your baby wakes up so much! I hear so many parents talking about how their babies sleep 12 hours straight or complaining about their babies "frequent" waking (which, to them is once or twice) that it makes the problem seem even worse, and makes me worry something is wrong with her!
      Lusa used to take 3 to 4 30 minute naps during the day as well, but her awake time has extended here lately, so we're down to two... maybe three!
      She doesn't really eat many solids yet... she's just not that interested, so nothing new there!
      I'm curious what your routines are to put yours down? What is your daytime routine for sleep? What are some ways that work well? Do you put yours down "sleepy yet awake" like "they" say you should? How do you "gently discourage" the nighttime nursing?

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      • #4
        I'm curious what your routines are to put yours down?
        We are really not much on routines so at this point I nurse him down in a chair at he computer or in the living room and hold him or then give him to hubby while watching a show or something. Sometimes I will be together enough to nurse him down in our bed and leave him there, but I prefer having him with us.

        What is your daytime routine for sleep?
        I am still nursing him down. My baby is big too (22 pounds) so I used to walk him to sleep more on walks to the park with my 3yr old and such, but now with the heat AHHH Its hard to do that often or to keep him asleep by still wearing him. So I have had to nurse him then put him in the stroller or our bed and then nurse back to sleep..... Most babies will end up staying asleep if they are truly sleepy!

        What are some ways that work well? Do you put yours down "sleepy yet awake" like "they" say you should?
        No, I have only done that once or twice and I think baby was so exhausted (and already thoroughly nursed) that he just went out! He is very different then my first boy and prefers sleeping with his back arched so when I am holding him he gets fussy at times and uncomfortable so when I lay him down he is happy and able to sleep better. Watch her cues on preferences.

        How do you "gently discourage" the nighttime nursing?
        Really, by not always offering first.. I mean I don't let him cry, but do other stuff first, even if I usually end up nursing anyway, we both had practice doing something else. I also try to nurse for only a short period of time. I de-latch, he insists and I give it back, but a lot now he just rolls over to his favorite position and gos back to sleep. I mean it has been a slow road of slowly doing that, but I have seen the results with no stress on his part. We do some rhythmic shushing too so when we are in the car or he is just almost waking up at home we can shush-shush-shush and that is kind of like family code for "we are still right here, go back to sleep"

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        • #5
          No advice from me but I wanted to let you know that you are not alone... My 7 month old is the same... So I definitely feel your pain...

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          • #6
            Thanks

            Thanks for the support! My little one's ears must have been burning because the NIGHT I originally posted this post, she only woke up every two hours, and last night she only woke up TWICE..... TWICE!!!!! I just started scooting her a little bit away from me and putting a pillow between us (as opposed to right under my arm ) and she's been sleeping MUCH, MUCH better! She's so sensitive to every noise that I think she just needed a little distance! Yeah!

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            • #7
              Yes. I think that helps! Imagine if we had to sleep with a chocolate eclair right at our mouth every night! I'd wake up to eat it! Yeah!

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              • #8
                it seems that, no matter which country we live in, our children behave the same. My 8 mo Greek () DD wakes 4 or 5 times every night, for the last 4 months. We are co-sleeping, because I couldn't get up every night and go back and forth, from my room to hers. I have to be at work at 8.30 and I don't drink coffee!

                I have tried some methods, like the gentle delatching, but with no progress so far. She just got her first two teeth, so I guess, I have a long way ahead. She is very persistent: she wakes up crying (not hard, but you get the picture), and doesn't want cuddling/sushing/patting, she is only rooting for the nipple. The wait just frustrates her even more!

                I got a new idea from you, though. I'll try the pillow between us, see what happens

                another question: I have observed that, most of the times, she cries and then gas comes out it must be one of the reasons for the waking, but how can i deal with this?

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                • #9
                  You are not alone..

                  My 10 mo daughter does the same thing as your baby... It has gotten a little better as of 9 months (maybe something about 9 months in the womb and 9 months out :-) I think that I feel better once I stop trying to fix it (as long as I know there is nothing wrong) and knowing there are other babies who are doing the same thing says to me they are ok, it's just how they sleep. I feel you on the exhaustion and the "no breaks" when they nap for such a short period. Maybe if you have a friend/partner/family member who can help you during the day for a couple of hours so you can get a little rest/break. Also I found that if I sleep with her or at least lie down with her she will nap longer during the day and I usually sneak in a nap myself.

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                  • #10
                    My son just turned one and we are still battling this same issue. He usually wakes anywhere from 6-10 times a night, 4-6 on a good night, and only a few times has be woken up only 2-3 times. We have started putting him in his own space and when my husband is home, he sleeps between my son and me. When he is flying, well, we wake up a lot more. I really wish someone would have suggested helping my son fall back to sleep by not offering milk first...I never thought about it. We are working on that now, but it is an uphill battle.

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                    • #11
                      Frequent night waking: allergies?

                      LISTEN TO ME MAMAS! Learn from my exhaustive experience. If your baby wakes frequently and is in pain and isn't falling back to sleep fast it could really be food allergies. I was a walking, sleeping idiot for MONTHS because my daughter was allergic to milk and gluten.

                      PLEASE consider a restrictive diet as it cured the problem within days. She didn't sleep more than 1 hour at a time, EVER until her 8th month when I went on this affectionately called 'dirt and water' diet. If you have questions you can email me and we can chat over the phone.

                      ESPECIALLY if you see painful gas, that is almost always a milk allergy.

                      She still isn't a great sleeper but we are worlds away from those extremely hard days.

                      -Signingspangler

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                      • #12
                        wow!

                        i know this is an old thread, but i had to comment. It feels like I'm reading a page out of my son's life! He's 3 now (and a GREAT sleeper!!), but we went thru the same thing until 9.5 months, when I just couldnt' handle it anymore. We had a few rough nights, but we moved him out of our room, and he did MUCH better. I had trained him to wake up so often, and he's a very sensitive sleeper,like me. Every time I moved, he woke up, and vice versa. How are things now?

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                        • #13
                          my son didn't like being up against me, either, so we put a crib mattress next to our mattress and he slept better, but i was still able to be attentive to his nighttime needs (and didn't have to get out of bed, huge plus!!!).

                          whatever nighttime arrangements you choose, following your baby's cues and attending to their needs at night, just like in the day, will ensure your baby continues to build a relationship of trust and knows he can count on you. you can read more about API's Ensure Safe Sleep and Nighttime Parenting Principle.

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                          • #14
                            Wear him...

                            I didnt read all the postings and maybe someone else aleardy said this, but wear him during the day. My son was having that problem and I started wearing him more. Because he was so distracted by the world around him during the day he was trying to make up the lost time at night. He got his fill of mommy when I wore him so he could sleep better through the night. Hope this helps. Good luck!

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by novembermommy83 View Post
                              No advice from me but I wanted to let you know that you are not alone... My 7 month old is the same... So I definitely feel your pain...

                              Another one here to say you are not alone - DS is almost 7 months and wakes pretty much every hour - if I'm lucky I'll get one or two - two hour stretches - he's also very restless sleeper. DH is ready for him to move out of the bed - but I'm trying to hold out longer - I know that once DS is sleeping better - DH will enjoy it more. Hopefully that happens soon.

                              I've been trying off and on the Pantley Removal Method from Elizabeth Pantley's "No Cry Sleep Solution" book - when I get frustrated I stop - which I'm sure is why it's not working for me - I'm not diligent at all because I'm oh so tired in the night.

                              I do know some that have had great success with this and have gone from hourly wakings to only 1 or 2 per night. Wish that were me.....

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