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I feel like such a failure

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  • I feel like such a failure

    my lo is 14 months old and i love her sooo much. But i feel like i'm letting her down. I'm becoming so angry with her at night time. For 2 months or so nighttime has become such a nightmare i dread it. I know she's teething, which is making it hard for her to settle. So i've been giving her childrens tylenol everynight before bed (i've talked to the dr. about this and he didn't seem overly concerned, some childeren just don't cut teeth well). but i feel like i'm drugging her in hopes she'll sleep better. I also try to tell myself she's having trouble settling because the household has been somewhat of kilter. I'm in the middle of a lawsuit with my previous employer, we just bought a house and are trying to plan a move in a little over a month. But it doesn't seem to stop the frustration i feel when she's acting up at bedtime. Sometimes i almost thinks it's become a game to her. she'll nurse at my breast. start to drift of roll away, smile at me, sit up and start talking and playing. As i've posted before i try as many different things i can to create a structured night time routine and bedtime (which is 7:30pm). But tonight my temper got the best of me. After 2 hrs of struggling with her (in carriers and nursing etc) i put her in a crib and said "if you don't want to go to bed with mommy that's fine mommy's going to go do her chores and you can lay here and play by yourself". I got up out of bed and went to the other side of the room where she couldn't see me. She lost it. I needed a few seconds to take some deep breaths and gain control of my temper. As i was alone at the time i thought it would be the best way to deal with the situation. as soon as my temper was undercontrol i returned to my hysterical daughter and started attempting to parent her to sleep. I could tell this greatly affected her as she was clinging to me and shaking. I feel so horrible. like i've let her down. I spend all my time trying to research different way to help her settle better at night (like the no cry sleep solution), but nothing seems to work. My mom tells me she's just like i was and they ended up doing the cio meathod and it was the best thing they ever did. I really don't want to do that. But i also feel i'm letting her down by observing how bad her seperation anxiety and dependance is on me (as i'm the only one who can get her to sleep period. she wants nothing to do with her father or anyone else that i've tried to encourage a relationship with). My friends also tell me of there children, where they lay them down in the cribs and they gently drift off to sleep. Is my daughter really that abnormal?? IS this the normal anxiety of a first time mom of a toddler? Did anyone else have these sorts of feelings? how did you get over the feelings of guilt all the time? the feelings of being a faliure?
    i'm sorry about the rant but after months of dealing with this i'm sitting at my computer crying with no one here needing to vent. ty for any suggestions you may have.

  • #2
    I'm sorry you're feeling sad and frustrated.

    I don't have bedtime issues, but I do feel guilty about getting frustrated. I have always had a short temper and while I usually have it in check, sometimes I have a short fuse and I feel like I get frustrated too easily. I think I need to control my anger better. I don't yell at my son, but sometimes I talk to him with an angry tone of voice and I don't want to do that.

    I'm sorry I don't have any advice I just wanted to say you're not alone with the guilt thing. I don't blame you for gettiing frustrated. That sounds exhausting. You're right to listen to your mommy instinct though to not do CIO.

    What about a later bedtime? Maybe she just isn't ready to go to bed that early. I guess I don't have bedtime issues because my son goes to sleep when he's ready and I just wait. The time he goes to bed varies by about an hour, but is usually pretty close to the same time every night.

    Good luck.


    • #3
      I do not have suggestion for bed time but as far as teething...have you tried Hyland's Teething Tablets? It is an awesome & safe product! Found it with DS2 & it even helped him nurse better & helped him sleep. Using it now as he has four molars coming in at 15 months old.

      My DS1 always got hyper/excited/irritable/restless when he had Tylenol for teething.


      • #4
        Your stress probably isn't helping, but here are some things that worked with my high needs son.

        First, I made sure daddy was involved, this was not decided by my son, but by myself and dh. I would nurse ds and then daddy took him and they had to spend time together. No option, I needed the break and daddy wanted the relationship. It was alot of tears from all of us at first, as I sat in another room listening to ds cry and dh trying to calm him. But, this, to me, isn't CIO as dh was there the entire time.

        Second, when it was time to sleep, I would nurse, and then if he started to talk and try to stay awake, I turned over. When he settled back down, I rolled back over towards him. If he started to play, I rolled on my other side, and kept this up until he figured out that mommy rolls over when I play.

        Neither of these are quick solutions, and I'm sorry I don't have any quick solutions to offer, but these two things helped me through some rough patches, when CIO was looking VERY appealing.


        • #5
          I used Hylands and for some of the time it worked, but for others it did not. I am a crunchy veggie who grows her own food and has managed to put her Lupus in remission naturally, but also believes that medicine is there to be used. I think because you hear of so many parents grabbing for the meds for every little thing, those of us who don't start to become a bit paranoid. Just being paranoid and coming for help about this is showing that you monitoring the medications used in your household very well. (I so love hylands products, enough that I sell them in my store and co-ops, they are top notch products!)

          There were times Ronnie's teething would get so bad, that his gum's would turn black and blue and his saliva had eaten away at the flesh inside his mouth causing horrible sores and pain. We used Tylenol and his doctor had prescribed something stronger if that wasn't enough and we did use it the first two nights while we waited for the bruising and sores to heal a bit.

          Some children have a really horrible time with teething and some go through what some parents feel is bad, but can be fixed naturally. As a mother who has been on the horrible teething side where the child isn't getting sleep and feeling absolutely miserable, just ask what would you do for yourself?
          If you went to the dentist and had some work done that required the cutting of your gum's or something like the deep cleaning, wouldn't you take Tylenol or in some cases something stronger?

          When people are in severe pain, it lowers their immune system opening them up to infections, which is why some children become feverish when they teeth. Teething does not cause fevers, but children do become ill or their gum's can build up bacteria as they split open for the teeth to come through.

          If your pediatrician isn't concerned, then you shouldn't be. You said you were doing it at night so he can rest better. Who can rest while they are in pain?

          I would suggest continuing to check in with your pedi as the teething progresses and maybe take your little one in to see a dentist if it continues to hurt him on the more painful end of the scale. It could be that a tooth is coming through a bit crooked or an infection in the gum.

          Pain could also be causing the behavior. When children hurt, they cling more and want more of the mama who makes them feel better.

          In our household I have never had a bed time. Not in the 27 years of parenting... I have let my children find their sleep naturally from day one so my children have always said, I need a nap or I am tired it is bed time. Sometimes when parents try to put a child to bed when they are not ready bedtime because an issue, a serious one. The bed becomes a place of anger, sadness and frustration amplifying things to the extreme. Children know how to sleep, they know when they are tired, sometimes I need to hold Ronnie when he has played so hard he can't settle, but I never say we are going to bed or I am putting him to bed or tell him he is tired. I want him to trust his inner self and learn about himself and his physical needs, not me tell him what he is or isn't or when he is or isn't.

          If it were me, I would try a few nights of not pushing the issue and letting her guide herself a bit, but I understand that you may need routine for your own lifestyle so it is only a suggestion.

          Peace & Blessings,

          Last edited by EcoMaMa; 06-14-2009, 09:54 AM.


          • #6
            I am sorry for your frustrations....I have a 11 month old son who at times is hard to parent to bed. We usually try to do our same bedtime routine but if he isnt ready to sleep we just let him crawl and play quietly in the room with us. I find that trying to parent him to sleep when he isnt ready to sleep just stresses the entire faimly out.

            I would also suggest that if you must try CIO to let a family member he is comfortable with hold and rock him to sleep instead of CIO in a crib alone. I got that tib bit of info from Dr Sears Baby Sleep Book.


            • #7
              Originally posted by JillCozza View Post

              I would also suggest that if you must try CIO to let a family member he is comfortable with hold and rock him to sleep instead of CIO in a crib alone. I got that tib bit of info from Dr Sears Baby Sleep Book.
              just want to clarify that a family member holding and comforting a child while he/she is crying is not CIO. CIO is done in isolation, sometimes an adult "checks in", but the baby is left alone.

              here is more info on API's Principle: Ensure Safe Sleep, Physically and Emotionally


              • #8
                thank you for the acticle, and everyones replies. it reminded me on why i'm choosing to parent the way i am. There is a lot of stress in this house, which i'm sure she is picking up on (we've just bought a new house, i'm in the middle of a lawsuite and other legal matters of being wrongfully terminated), on top of that she is teething. I've begun to make changes in relaxing our night time routine. I was getting a lot of "She doesn't have a bed time??" and the "She needs structure you have to get her on a schedual", etc. and being unable to achieve the "She still doesn't sleep through the night?? she should be by her age" had me even more stressed out!
                thank you all for listening and motivating me to continue


                • #9
                  I am sorry that you are going through this. My daughter was also unbelievably cranky because of teething. Hylands was the only thing that worked for her. I just had to give her some this morning, her last tooth is coming in, YAY! Hang in there the teething will be over sooner than you think. I understand the frustration thing; we have been going through a "hitting" stage. I feel the same feelings, especially when she hits, and it actually hurts. I also go into another room, and take deep breaths. I end up crying also because I hate that I get frustrated with her. I truly understand how you feel. As far as with the bedtime thing, Saylor used to be the same way. She and daddy though have become a lot closer, and now she will go upstairs with him every night. She gives me a kissie, and gladly goes to bed in daddy’s arms. I hope some of this helps. Always remember though, YOU ARE a good mother.


                  • #10
                    I wish I had great words of wisdom for you but I don't. What I can offer however is solidarity. I feel like I could have written that email- the simalirites are shocking. My son is also 14 months old and we have suddenly gone from nursing to sleep in 15 or 20 minutes to an all out brawl every night that I too have begun to dread. We've also been trying the no cry sleep book but to no avail. And I too was losing my temper and feeling like a failureas it seemed like everyone else was simply putting their child in bed alone where they drift off to sleep peacefully - every child but mine. So I feel your desperation completely and while I don't wish this kind of frustration on anyone, it is reassuring that I am not alone and neither are you. One thing I have found that helps settle my guy on occasion, after nursing has not, is if we put a really low-key documentary video on at a low volume - we use one called Yufa- that's the Turkish title as we are in Turkey but I think it's called Earth? in English - it helps and it helps me calm a bit too - you know, any little bit can help. Oh and I agree with everyone else on the Hylands - I have my mom ship them from the US and we couldn't have gotten through teething with out them- sometimes they even help him off to sleep. Good luck but you are definately not alone.


                    • #11
                      I have been know to bore my kids to sleep in a pinch too..... Shopping channels or documentaries work really well!


                      • #12
                        I"ve attempted to use this attemp, watching something boring on tv. but she just squirms and fights. she doesn't want to sit still long enough. she wants to get down and play. So i've taken her into the bedroom to relax quietly in there and she gets great happyness at running around the bed and falling and squealing. i "ignore her" and she doesn't really settle. So i'm thinking either i'm not doing it right...or this isn't the route for her.

                        I also tried keeping her up (not done on purpose, they were putting a new roof on the house we're renting and then a couple of late nights just hangning around the house). she knows the sign for sleep. however, even throughtly exhasted she never requested to go to sleep. i eventually carried my crying, clutzy daughter to bed lol So i wanted to know EcoMaMa how you let them tell you they we're ready for bed??


                        • #13
                          I have always watched each child's signs, not as in sign language, but as in cues to being tired. When they are and they want to get a little bit more play in, I usually play with them. I have never had any luck in the ignore them they will get bored route. I also like that bit of quality one on one time before bed, which is probably another reason why they love going to bed. They knew it was an hour or more of just mommy and them doing stuff together.

                          When my kids were tiny, I would watch and see them rub their eyes and yawn a few times and would ask if they could help me read a story or two or other activity.

                          Jackie didn't talk until she was six so I had to really learn to watch her signals for when she was tired. I would have to catch her at that time and start her in the direction that worked for her.
                          Each time that direction could be different. Think about when you are tired, there are times that one thing will work to help you fall asleep and then something else another time.

                          You said she gets down and runs around, so maybe she needs a bit of physical exercise before bed.

                          Perhaps a few dance routines, like the hokey pokey or even just some generic dancing and exercise. (There is a myth that exercise and activity before bed will keep you from falling asleep) It actually helps many people fall asleep and in some cases is the only way some children and adults can sleep. It was from one of those old wives tales was used to keep kids in line and we seemed to cling to it. Same myth as waiting an hour after eating to swim. That would give mothers time to clean up after breakfast / lunch, but had no ill effects on the person swimming. The scientists who figured the sleep thing out when checking into why so many people fall asleep after sex, learning activity before bed really does have that effect on most people, not all. They then branched out into aerobic activity and found the same conclusions.

                          Last year Ronnie had a tough time for a few months and we would take an hour walk, come back and pop in the shower and then nurse to sleep. And as I type this I remember Jackie having a hard time on hot summer nights back in Brooklyn and us going for walks and having bedtime parties. We would dance and have a banana with ice cream. Bananas help with sleep.

                          Always try a few different ways and always give them time to work. It can take a couple of weeks for you to notice if something is working and sometimes longer. Keep a journal and write down each time how long it takes her to get to her happy sleep spot. She also may be a child that really just has a hard time falling asleep. As she gets older it will get easier for her to be able to understand how she feels better afterward.
                          Keep me posted and I will see what other things I can come up with. I know you must be tired.
                          Peace & Blessings & Sleepy Hugs!



                          • #14
                            Originally posted by naomifrederickmd View Post
                            I have been know to bore my kids to sleep in a pinch too..... Shopping channels or documentaries work really well!
                            LOL Shopping channels. Those are so dangerous for me. Just the kitchen gadgets.

                            When Ronnie was really tiny he loved Sunrise Earth, so did Mommy.


                            • #15
                              Or eldest was always very resistant to falling asleep in the car as a toddler...and during a long car trip he needs to sleep some of it! My husband and I would talk about the most uninteresting thing in the most monotone voices and it worked like a charm!