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High Need Baby

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  • High Need Baby


    I have a 13-14 months old who nurses all night long, i.e. on average every hours. At best I get a 2-2.5 hours stretches. Here is more about our arrangement:

    Most of the time we bed-share a queen bed. We also have a co-sleeping bassinet attached to the bed, but b/c I find it very inconvenient to nurse b/c it's not possible to get it even with the bed and also b/c it puts me in a uncomfortable position while nursing and wakes me up completely. Our baby is between my DH and I. Our baby sleeps on top of the covers; he won't even have his feet covered... he kicks them off which is fine, I prefer it that way.

    I am in the process of reading Chapter 6 of Sears' The baby sleep book : the complete guide to a good night's rest for the whole family which offers suggestions. I had never gone bare all night until last night which helped a bit despite my being a bit chilly since it's winter and I fell back asleep uncovered to my waist.

    His incessant nursing is starting to get me sleep deprived; my nipples are doing just fine, but sometimes he won't latch off and it drives me nuts so I unlatch him which is not a problem with the baby. I do try to nap with him, but often he doesn't nap more than an hour so I wake up more tired than before if I get a chance to fall asleep. I do try to offer comfort by drawing the baby close to me or giving him a pacifier before offering my breast to see if he will fall back to sleep that way, but so far it hasn't worked very well; he is addicted to the breast... he is a boy after all

    He is a bit gassy which was a major issue when he was smaller. However, it is manageable. There are no physical reason for him to wake up as far as I can tell. Not too hot or cold, not too dry or humid...

    That's all I can think about writing for now. I'll keep reading that book when I have energy, meanwhile I'd be interested to read if anyone else is having or had this issue and how they deal or dealt with it.

    Thank you,

    Last edited by melissa_h; 03-06-2009, 07:40 PM. Reason: Edited to remove trademarked term

  • #2
    have you tried offering a sippy cup of water? it took me a while to figure our that ds2 was ravenously thirsty all night long. the air in our house is dry and w/winter setting in, the furnace makes it worse. at 2.5, he still grabs his water several times a night.

    as for the sleep deprivation, oh yeah, so BTDT, and there are dozens of other posts from moms in the same boat as you. it is important for you to stay on top of this and try to get as much rest as possible. sleep-deprivation is no good for anyone. do you go to sleep w/your baby at night? do you stay in bed until he gets up? is there someone to come in a help you during the day so you can get longer naps? can dh help out?

    also, i always recommend Calms Forte. it's a homeopathic sleep aid that you can take at night that will help the sleep you get be more productive. it won't interfere w/you taking care of your baby at night, either.


    • #3
      Not much help from dh in that dept at this point. I also don't have anyone I trust with my son to help out either. DS cannot handle his own sippy yet... until now I didn't see the point into pushing him to use one... I guess it's time to try. Meanwhile, I'll take a bottle of water for him when we go to bed. I do have a humidifier going at night in the bedroom b/c I, myself, am sensitive to low humidity, just like baby so I'm a descent hydrometer for him

      I usually go one hour after DS to bed so I get some "me" time; otherwise, I don't get any. I suppose I should give that up, but it's hard b/c I feel I've lost my identity. I keep telling myself "it's just another phase; he'll outgrow it." I get up when he does, yes. Lately, I have managed to get him to stay in bed a little extra which helps.

      I'll look into the Calms Forte.

      What's BTDT? Is there an acronym list I can check out?

      Thank you for the reply.



      • #4
        if dh has not been helpful up till now, explain to him that you NEED help. he can find many ways to contribute in this area.

        try to look at the extra hour of sleep as "me time" for now, after all, it is totally to YOUR benefit. and, i know it's hard right now, very hard, but it won't be long before you'll get better "me time".

        BTDT - been there, done that
        here's our anacronym list:


        • #5
          If going bare on top at night is helpful but chilly you can wear a shirt with the breast area cut out. Just get a fairly tight top and cut an oval out of the front. It's easy to overestimate the size of the oval needed so, start small and enlarge if necessary.


          • #6
            HI Chicagoland LouLou.
            You deffintly seem like someone who could benifit from a reallife AP group. Ours has developed over the years with many close freinds who will really help each other over the years. Even a playgroup with likeminded parents can give your brain a rest, talking to other understanding adults, going to lay down in a bedroom for an hour nap! I have done that before during hard (sleeping) times!

            I don't know if any of them are near you BUT you should contact the closest and I bet they will know of someone nearish that needs a group too.

            I did a little night weaning with my first easily (he had an easygoing personality) but his brother (now 13mo) is much more hesitant to give up his night nursings. On most nights he will only wake a few times and only HAVE to nurse once or twice, but now he has a cold and am getting some teeth so we are back to to all night thing for a few days.



            • #7
              Thanks for the shirt with holes suggestion. It works nicely.

              I tried the water at night, but my LO has zero interest in it and protests until I offer my breast. So I guess, breast it is. Either way, I'm involved since he is not ready to handle his own water.

              I went to bed with him last night and wound up starring at the ceiling for a couple of hours b/c I didn't have my "me" or down time... I was too wired/stressed from the day to sleep... I'm going to keep that hour for myself and have my cup of tea.

              I found my "local" AP group a couple of month ago, but I'm far from the bulk of the membership which makes it difficult to meet with people. I xposted the same message and found others in the same boat... it does help to know it's indeed a phase albeit a rather long one and I'm at the beginning of it.

              I will have to ride the phase and keep on reading to see if there is anything else I can try.

              Thank you for your replies.