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Thread: From laughing self to sleep to hell in the cot!

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Default From laughing self to sleep to hell in the cot!

    Help! I'm feeling really desperate!
    My four and a half month old son has gone from happily self-settling in his cot in our room from about 8 weeks old, to crying and grizzling fairly consistently upon being put to bed over the past month or so. I don't understand. Our general routine hasn't changed. We have a feed, clean nappy and pjs, cuddle, songs over his cot, kiss goodnight. He used to then laugh and chatter himself to sleep, whereas now he wails up a storm and one of us has to keep coming in and carrying him for cuddles and songs until he usually falls asleep in our arms. Inevitably he wakes when we try and sneak him back into bed, and more and more we are finding it takes 3 or 4 goes before he has worn himself out enough to stay asleep. Sometimes we might get half an hour and then he wakes crying again. And his day sleeps are almost non-existent. He might have two 20-30 minute catnaps through the day, from waking at roughly 7am. Whilst he is often fairly cheery through the day, there are also plenty of other days when he is clearly tired and upset but won't sleep. I have to put him in the pram and go for long walks (which isn't a bad thing per se, but I'd like to not have to do that every time I want him to sleep) and he pretty much only sleeps for the duration of the motion. I can't just walk him around the backyard until he drops off then park him inside while I try and do my own thing for a bit. I guess that is also at the heart of my anxiety and stress - I feel like my entire day is spent trying to settle him then comfort him for not resting then we are back into feeding and playing again and I barely get a break. My partner thinks I am overreacting but it's easy to feel that way when you are only home dealing with it two days out of seven. I just feel that my son should be getting more sleep than he does (for both our sakes), and I don't know how to help him get that.


  2. #2

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    It is a completely normal developmental stage that babies go through at this age where any previous *good* sleeping habits go right out the window along with our sanity LOL. Some babies will get past this stage without so much as a single sleepless night and others will play holy hell. My own baby hasn't had a solid night sleep since he was 5mths old - due to teething and discovering that the world is bigger than just me and him.

    Have you considered investing in a sling? if he likes to go to sleep with motion, then maybe this could be the answer because you can just pop him in and keep going about your daily routine yourself. You wont spoil him by 'wearing' him and it will make him feel secure too.

  3. #3

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    Thank you Trillian!!! I saw my mother's group and we all pretty much decided it was a developmental thing, and I feel much better just for having vented! I have a sling and am going to definitely try it...he didn't like it as a little bub - I think it was too squashy, but now he can sit up it might be worth a go! As long as he is happy in it, I am happy to wear him. I've heard so many good things about baby-wearing!
    (of course, last night he settled quite easily and slept well, so I feel a bit sheepish in retrospect!)

  4. #4

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    No worries! And don't feel sheepish, its hard to know what is within the range of normal behaviour if we don't ask about it.

  5. #5

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    OMG I could have written your post - in fact I just showed DH, I couldn't believe it!
    DS has been a GREAT settler for bed time and then I got a sleeping bag and he started sleeping through - and now in the last 4-5 days (I think?) things have turned to cr*pola! And he's 4.5 months.

    Well...I thought it was something I was doing but obviously not. Maybe his sleep habits are just up the creek for the moment. I hope it doesn't last...for both our sakes!!

  6. #6

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    Zedd and Rahjah- my 5.5 month old has been doing the EXACT same thing for a month now and driving me bananas. I have found the best thing to do it ignore what I did before (timing, naps etc), and now I put her down for a nap as soon as she yawns/rubs her eyes. She usually protests so I turn the vacuum on or the radio on static outside her room. She stops grizzling to listen then falls asleep for 45 mins to 1 hours. I do this up to 4 times a day and it has hugely improved her night sleep to no end. I don't let her cry it out either. But I swear by day naps. If not, she gets overtired and come 9pm (after having gone to sleep at 7pm) she is awake and screaming. Do whatever you can for now to get them to sleep during the day.

  7. #7

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    Yeah actually in DS's case, he's ok in the day now, he's actually getting better! But his bed time wind down seems to be a wind up!

  8. #8

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    It's so funny how things work out! Since I posted, every night has been much better. I am feeding him to sleep in the bedroom and transferring him to the cot and spending maybe ten minutes patting to keep him settled, so it isn't quite as low maintenance as before, but it sure beats an hour and a half of crying and carrying til my arm and back are killing me! We've started bathing in the evening too, so I suspect this might be helping.

    My mantra has become "No phase lasts forever!"

    (My other mantra, for when I get into a bit of a negative spiral is "A bad day isn't a bad week, a bad week isn't a bad month and a bad month isn't a bad year. BUT, a good day is a good week!" )

  9. #9

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    Glad things have improved for you! Me too!

    I decided DS must be trying to extend his bedtime LOL. But it seems to have worked. We have a "new" routine now that means it's not automatically bath, feed, bed, but we have some play time now and he's back to sleeping much better (fingers crossed!).

    DH is away now and I was nervous but he's been brilliant.

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