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Thread: Is this the proverbial "rod"?

  1. #1

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    Default Is this the proverbial "rod"?

    I've just had a mini minor melt down today - bursting into sobbing tears a little over an hour ago because all I wanted was a little bit of lunch and DD just didn't want to let that happen. She just won't let me put her down, not even for 5 minutes.

    Two weeks ago, she would fall asleep on me and I could easily put her down in her pram (where she was sleeping at the time) and she'd stay asleep. Most times she'd have a proper sleep of up to 3, sometimes even 4 hours. Lately though, I will have her sound asleep on me, put her down and within easily 1 minute (sometimes immediately) she will be squirming. By 2 minutes there's grunting and by 5 minutes she's fully awake and agitated.



    I then pick her up (as I hate hearing her upset) and proceed to jiggle and bounce my way around the house to get her to settle again. Put her down again and it starts over. The only time she's no physically in my arms is at night time when we're asleep, but we co-sleep so she'll be pressed up against me anyway.

    Last night I passed her to DH when she was happy (ish) and went off to have a shower. By the time I got out she was in full cry mode and very upset. DH was trying to settle her, but hearing the crying escalating and knowing she was getting close to a point of getting so worked up it takes forever to settle her - I took over. Almost immediately, and definitely with in 30 seconds, she calmed down and was happy to just rest her head on my shoulder and cuddle.

    Is this the proverbial rod I've been hearing so much about? Have I made it so that she will only tolerate being carrying literally 24/7 and won't let anyone else hold her? Even her own daddy?

  2. #2

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    hi honey((HUGS))how hard that situation sounds we went through a similar stage early on with my DD she wouldn't go to anybody but me and it really started to upset DH. I too have a really hard time listening to my bubba upset and in the end I had to get her used to falling asleep from awake or she wouldn't go into a proper sleep. Same problem she would be asleep on me and wake immediately when i put her down , so for my own sanity we put her to bed in her bedroom in her cot for daytime sleeps and I used a musical aquarium toy with played music and moved little fish and bubbles. This was hard for a while because she cried hard to start with so I would leave her for 5 mins close the door and wait if the crying continued I would return comfort her without picking her up replace dummy, wrap talk soothingly and try the process again gradually the time between crying and settling became less and then finally my dd got to the point that I could put her in the cot awake and she would fall asleep on her own watching the Aquarium toy,
    hope that helps a little it worked for me eventually but it was hard work emotionally but I did get some sanity back.
    At the sametime I had to try really hard to step back and let my DH find his own link with her and way to manage because I found that by taking over from him when she was not settling I really dented his confidence in handling his DD
    Alliexxxx Goodluck

  3. #3

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    Haydies - It is so tough when they are that young but you are doing the right thing. The fastest way to an insecure child is to not comfort them when they need you. Your bub is only a month old. They will grow up confident and well adjusted if you keep doing exactly why you are doing. Check out this thread as an intro to attachment parenting.
    Attachment Theory - Transcript from Radio National yesterday - BellyBelly Forums ~ Pregnancy, Birth & Baby
    And if you want to read a great book check our 'Parenting for a peaceful world' - awesome!
    Chin up. It will get better. Get as much support as you can from your partner, family and friends. And try and have some snacks always available (eg. cut up veges) as when you get low in sugar it gets harder to cope. I try and eat every three hours and it really helps me cope.
    Big hugs!
    Last edited by krysalyss; November 23rd, 2007 at 02:18 PM. Reason: Forgot to put in link.

  4. #4

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    I don't think I could ever do controlled crying. We've tried wrapping a few times, but she just struggles against it, she's much happier having her arms out. We tried wrapping just her feet but again, she struggles.

    I probably should have elaborated in regards to DH a bit more - but lack of brain today. Up until just recently, I'd say as little as a week ago, DD had no problems being comforted by DH. There's even been quite a few nights where he has taken over and I've gone to bed - he'll just bring her in for a feed and that's it. In fact that's him she's smiling at in my sig pic. It's just something that's happened this week that, for some reason, she won't tolerate anyone but me. I'm just hoping it's not due to a build up of having only me during the week days.

    All of this holding / only me business seems to have come on gradually. The first two weeks she happily went to DH or I and I hardly held her - ie we'd cuddle, she'd fall asleep and I'd put her down until she woke. The only times she stayed asleep on me was because I wanted her there, I didn't want to put her down. Now though, it's not my say... I'm just worried it's my fault.

    krysalyss, thankyou for your reply, and the link. I'm a huge "cuddles and kisses" person - not sure what you call that exactly, and am much more comfortable and sure about picking Savannah up and comforting her if she's upset than leaving her. I have no idea if it's connected or not, but my mum was never a big person for hugs and affection, and I had huge problems growing up and into my early adulthood. Not sure if it's linked, but I know that I love affection and craved it when I was growing up (and didn't get it), so am showering it on Savannah. Course, I've got no idea if SHE wants as many kisses as I give her, but I want them and her head just smells so damn divine!
    Last edited by Haydies; November 23rd, 2007 at 02:25 PM.

  5. #5

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    haydies- your post could have been written by me. my ds is exactly the same and up until this week i was going the whole day without eating or showering as he just wouldn't let me. stick with it as ds has gotten a bit better this week. another thing that has been a real life saver for me has been putting him in a hab so i can get some stuff done and this week i bought a swing which he absolutely loves. i put him in it and can actually make myself some lunch. it's great! sounds like you are doing a great job with your little girl. i'm scared ds is going to have a dint on his forehead from how much i kiss it! i can't stop. i look at him and just have to kiss him!

  6. #6

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    OH MY GAAWD! *runs over and hugs Gracie!!*

    I pass my swing 10 times a day, but as I read your post my head slowly turned around (very horror movie style) and was like BAM! Let's try her in the swing! We bought it two weeks ago and she wasn't really that keen on it. I've put her in it and come back to the computer (it's in the same room, maybe 5 feet away) and started reading again. Just looked over, 10 mins later oops for distraction, and after happily smiling away at the bookshelf... the eyes... they are a closing!

    It's putting her to sleep!!!

  7. #7

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    Haydies congrats!!!!! I know how hard it can be when your baby just wont settle. Good on you for sticking with your lots of love approach! Im so glad you DS is sleeping now. Im excited for you!!!! Enjoy the quiet time
    Last edited by nay23; November 23rd, 2007 at 05:40 PM. Reason: i cant spell :)

  8. #8

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    yah!!! i'm so glad it worked!!!
    i think you're doing a fantastic job. another thing i have been doing is reading a pinky mackay book. it has made me feel amazing, like everything i'm doing- from co-sleeping, to sling wearing, to dancing with ds in my arms is doing him good!! i know it's hard atm, and there's days where i feel like i'm going insane. i even had visions of ds as a 15yo emo kid still sleeping in my bed snuggling up to my bare breast- quite a scarey thought! just trust your instincts, as it sounds like you're doing an amazing job. feel free to pm me if you ever need to chat

  9. #9

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    Oh Haydies it does get better (lol don't ask me when though - i'm still working on it). My baby bjorn and swing were my best friends for a few weeks....but you never hear babies in africa and asia crying long do you - because they are either worn (in a sling) or comforted straight away...I'll do it again next time too.

    You are doing a fantastic job.

  10. #10

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    oh you poor thing, i definately dont believe in the 'proverbial rod". What you are doing is helping her fel secure and loved, you are her main care giver and she loves and depends on you so much that she wants to know that you are always there. Even though it is incredibly exhausting, frustrating and stressful (my 18 month old has HUGE seperation anxirty atm! i am going mental), it is very normal and you are doing the right thing by cuddling her when she wants to be cuddled. What you are doing is not creating a rod for your back, it is teaching her that when she needs you you will always be there for her, so as she gets older she will be more secure cause you have always let her know you are there when she needs you.

    Keep doing what you feel is right, sounds like you are a wonderful oving caring natural mummy!

  11. #11

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    Thankyou all so much for the replies.

    I think my little melt down earlier today was probably very much tired induced. I think I just needed to get it out (the good cry and vent) because I've had such a better afternoon. Savannah had another episode later in the afternoon, but it was much different - not grizzly, but real 'pain' sounding. It broke my heart, but I was able to cope no problems. And after getting her to sleep in the swing, I started to think I wouldn't need to carry her 24 hours of the day.

    In fact, she's currently out in the other room with DH...

    After reading a lot this afternoon, I definitely categorise myself in the 'gentle parenting' group... I think. From everything I have read (especially on this site *hugs Kelly*), I believe that it only does them good to pick them up when they're crying - that they're crying for a reason. I have a sling which was originally purchased for outings to save lugging a big pram around, but have since decided to start using it around the house too. *I* have no problems with this, but I think let my MIL, SIL, Mother and even the bloomin neighbour down the road get in my head and make me think today that I had "done the rod for my own back". I also co-sleep, something I never imagined myself doing and certainly won't be telling MIL etc about.

    It's funny how one bad day can make you doubt yourself so much. I feel in myself that I am doing it right, but after this morning and feeling like I couldn't even put her down to make lunch, I started to worry that this rod I have heard so much about was true...

    Thankyou girls for helping me remember and setting me straight again. Especially your post widdle, much love for that!

  12. #12

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    glad you are feeling better, sometimes all we needis a bit of sleep and everything statrs looking okay again

  13. #13

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    I would just like to add that when I brought dd home, my house was like yours (exept my DH did not like handling dd - she was very small)
    She would sleep in my arms or on my chest and that is where she will stay for the whole day - strange that at night (when she eventually falls asleep - she had colic) she was happy to stay in her cot. When she did wake and could not resettle, I would keep her on my chest and sleep sitting up. (lots of sore necks then ) I sat on my @$$ infront of the TV for two months holding a sleeping baby. But it does change. I am not going to lie to you and say that it does get better. It does, but it gets worse again too and then it gets better again. I don't want to give you something to worry about, but I wish that someone had told me. Just when you think your bundle of joy is in a nice routine and she is sleeping (thank heavens) she changes her routine. It's not something that YOU or DH do, it's just her growing up and becoming more aware. So don't put yourself down when she does something "strange" or out of the ordinary for her.
    There were a time when dd only went to sleep in her pram, then only on her own in her cot, then only infront of the TV on the floor, then only when I hold her.
    There WERE a time when dd slept through. I would get up no more than twice a night (7pm - 7am) to just put her dummy back in. At the moment - she is going to bed anytime between 7pm and 9pm, she wakes twice a night and stay awake for about a hour to hour and a half. *sigh* She only resettle when in bed with me and DH.
    I am having this "to-hell-with" attitude towards ppl saying to me that I am "teaching" my child wrong and that I am, like you said, picking that rod. Just keep hold on and keep doing what you are and what you feel is right and what you are comfy with. I DON"T believe that you can cuddle your child to much or that you can give them too much love. Go ahead, hold her the whole day and let DH bring take-away for dinner

  14. #14
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    Haydies,

    You did great getting through this meltdown....now, for the next time something like this happens...
    Babies are instinctual creatures. They do NOT manipulate or react to learned behaviour until well over 6 months, usually more like 9 or 12. They respond well to routine because it takes more than one go at anything for them to learn and having a routine (however liberal or strict it is) allows them to predict enough in some areas that they can learn in others without feeling insecure and "on guard" all the time. As long as there are some constants they can rely on (which might be "bedtime is at 7" or "booby happens at bedtime, which i decide the timing of myself" or "mummy reads when i go to bed") kids do great. This means that until your bubs is about 6-9 months NOTHING you have done has taught her to behave a certain way. Even CC, which many believe teaches a baby that crying does not attract anyone's attention (which is why they stop crying) is not recommended and does not work until a baby is MUCH older.

    If, when bubs is 8 years old, every time in her whole life she's cried you've immediately given her exactly what she wants no matter what, THEN you might have made a rod for your own back (which by the way is by NO MEANS irreversible, kids are smart and can learn different behaviour much more easily than adults). But comforting your tiny baby? Holding her when she asks for you? Accepting that sometimes life is scary for a bit and only mummy will do to calm her? That is NOT making a rod, that is being a loving parent and you're really good at it so be proud

    Bx

  15. #15

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    Hoobley, you have such a nack for making me feel so much better. Your post just really hit home with me this morning, thankyou.

    I'm slowly getting a bit of a routine down to hopefully help her at nights. DH and I have dinner, and then, usually around 9pm as he gets home so late, I jump into a bath with Savannah. While I'm sitting here washing her, DH sits beside the bath while chatting and playing with her. We let her kick around for however long she wants, and then out we jump. The past couple of days I've been letting DH dry and dress her while I jump in for a shower myself. I'm trying to make this their special time where I am not around (so he doesn't feel self conscious or like I'm watching).

    Then it's quiet time for the rest of the night and usually just feeding and bed. She won't go down right away yet, but maybe one day. At the moment we're usually getting to bed around 11pm ish, with a bad night seeing us reach 2 - 3am. Last night wasn't too bad...

    And she gave me a great sleep in - 10am! And because we co-sleep (just her and I), I must be getting really good at the night feeds as I don't even really wake anymore. And she's getting great at not wanting 15 nappy changes a night and is happy to wait until the morning. Although she only waited until 6am for this one, but ooooh boy when I picked it up I could see why!

    I'm now sitting here in my hug-a-bub as I type this. She's sound asleep and has been all morning. Today's a much better day.

    And P.S. I just HAVE to share, this morning I put her down with DH while I went to pee and wash my hands. Came back to this:

    http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2053/...0c2355c8_o.jpg
    http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2337/...3bf2416e_o.jpg

    I guess it was just a temporary thing that she wouldn't go to him.

  16. #16
    paradise lost Guest

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    Awww! What a pair of cuties!!!

    GLad you're feeling better hun.

    Bx

  17. #17

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    Melts your heart doesn't it? So glad you're having a better day.

  18. #18

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    Those photos are SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO cute!!!

    Go Haydies!! Just remember - mum's rock, that means you!!

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