To get wound up about MN and sleep advice

(387 Posts)
LittleMilla Sun 16-Feb-14 21:00:47

I love MN and will often come on to get advice...can normally count on it for sensible pointers for everything except for sleep.

AIBU to wonder why noone on MN seems to want their children to sleep through the night? I no of noone in RL who co-sleeps - but everyone on MN seems to? And people seem to think it's entorely normal for a 8 month old baby to wake repeatedly through the night.

I just don't get it. So much valuable advice...yet everyone on here seems to go madly soft when it comes to sleep.

Am I the only one?

inlawsareasses Sun 16-Feb-14 21:02:05

Nope I think this is as well

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 21:04:43

I don't think its about being soft, it is about being realistic. And if someone thinks its abonormal for a child to not sleep through at 8 months then I would say it is them who would be giving the wrong message.

Co-sleeping is great for some (and a way to get more sleep for many parents!).

Each child is different and one of the biggest issues surrounding sleeping through is this expectation that a) children will sleep through at a young age and b) all children are the same

Koothrapanties Sun 16-Feb-14 21:04:55

I agree. I posted asking for advice about my baby waking up at 4am ready for the day and explained how I was really struggling with this. The majority of replies said I should be gratefull that she is sleeping until then. Not much constructive advice really, not very helpful.

Superworm Sun 16-Feb-14 21:05:41


I think most parents want their child to sleep through. Some just don't. MN normalises that.

FudgefaceMcZ Sun 16-Feb-14 21:06:08

WTF? I expect my 12 and 4 year old to sleep through the night (barring noise/bad dreams/illness). That is not in any way the same thing as expecting an 8 month old baby to sleep through the night (which neither of them did).

I would guess you are probably the only one who can't see a substantive difference between a child and a baby, yes. I think most people manage this distinction before leaving primary school.

Steben Sun 16-Feb-14 21:08:08

I agree (although expect this to kick off) no one seems to want their dc to sleep in own rooms! On quite a few threads I have seen the answer to most sleep problems is co sleeping which whilst fine for some is my worst nightmare (and no one sleeps)...

MatryoshkaDoll Sun 16-Feb-14 21:09:15

Slight tangent but can someone explain the logistics of co-sleeping for me?

There's just no way I'd do it with DD. I'd be terrified of smothering her. How do you do it? Put them on top of the duvet between you both and cover them with a blanket? Or have them under the duvet with you?

I can't imagine how you could do it and it be safe.

Janethegirl Sun 16-Feb-14 21:09:37

Personally I think it totally depends on the child. DD1 slept through from around 6 weeks, DS1 however was a complete nightmare, waking every 2 hours until around 24 months. And they were treated the same. I just went with the flow, with DS1 I just got up in the night and dealt with him without even waking smile

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:09:50

most eight month babies DON'T sleep through the night. I agree that MN normalises this. Lots of people I know co-sleep.

I tried everything to get my first child to sleep through and none of it worked. I felt better when I realised my expectations were a tad unrealistic.

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:10:08

I agree tbh.

Both mine slept through from young. Though DD2 was later to do it than DD1. And I couldn't co sleep at all. Just couldn't relax enough.

Sleep is one of the things that I have to have sorted. DD1 had a dummy til she was nearly 3, and DD2 still takes a bottle at 15 months. But sleep is something I was keen to get a routine going and keep it.

MyNameIsAnAnagram Sun 16-Feb-14 21:10:36

I don't know any 8mo babies who sleep through the night. That is entirely normal.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:11:42

I was keen to get a routine going too Panda, it just didn't work grin

TheGreatHunt Sun 16-Feb-14 21:11:46

People are probably too embarrassed to admit they co sleep in real life. Or admit they have any other sleep problems. Because they fear they'll be judged.

I remember mums talking about how easily their babies slept then let slip about problems another time. Or once I got to know someone they'd be a bit more honest...

Martorana Sun 16-Feb-14 21:11:56

It's fantastic if babies sleep through the night. And that is what everyone wants. The problem is that many don't. And if you have one that doesn't, you are made to feel that a) yours is the only one that doesn't and b) that you are doing something wrong.

There is so much emphasis on sleeping through that it's good to remind people that it's not the norm. And that actually there isn't much you can to make it happen, but there are things you can do that make it easier to cope until they do.

Oh, and people lie about how long their baby sleeps and whether or not they co sleep more than anything else. Except possibly how much they smoke.

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 21:12:34

Sleep is one of the things that I have to have sorted.

Comments like this, espcially from someone who was lucky enough to have children who sleep through from a young age make me laugh.

Some children no amount of routine, dummies or anything else will make them sleep through at young age. Some people are bad sleepers whether baby, child or adult. Yes there are things you can do to try to help that but its not something you can just sort and sometimes nothing works!

TheGreatHunt Sun 16-Feb-14 21:13:37

And everyone wants their baby to sleep through, what a ridiculous idea to think otherwise.

People suggest cosleeping as a way of coping because it worked for them.

I've also been around on the sleep boards for long enough to know that people also suggest cc as if it were the magic bullet!

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:13:52

Me and DH are terrible insomniacs, I don't know why I expected a sleeping baby.

arethereanyleftatall Sun 16-Feb-14 21:13:53

I agree with you. In rl I don't know any children beyond 6 months who don't sleep through. Can't dare suggest that on here, in a sleeping thread where leaving your baby to cry for, shock, horror, a second, is vile.

BonaDea Sun 16-Feb-14 21:14:36

I think the issue, OP, is that in real life people would have you believe that an 8mo sleeping through the night is guaranteed or to be expected, when in fact many many 8mo babies are in reality too small to do that yet. Of course it is the ideal, but it helps to realise that all babies don't so this and that there isn't a magic bullet.

The intense focus that bloody everyone in your life - when you have a young baby - places on sleep can be incredible. And of course the helpful comments of having to give formula, having to make sure they eat xyz during the day etc can be exhausting and it helps to have some more realistic expectations sometimes.

Fairylea Sun 16-Feb-14 21:15:03

Yanbu to a degree but I think there's a balance between expecting an 8 month old to sleep through and then turning to crying it out when they don't (I'm not saying that's what you're suggesting before everyone flames me!)

I was lucky that both my dc slept 7-7 from about 12 weeks but I think a lot of that was me being very rigid about routine (not feeding, I fed on demand I just mean not letting them nap longer than 2.5 hours in the day without a feed being offered and creating a day and night from an early and also going against sids advice and putting them in their own rooms from about 8 weeks, I do understand the sids advice, I just made a choice based on the risk etc).

I could never have co slept. I struggle to sleep with my dh let alone a baby as well.

I did pick up and put down, neither dc were ever left to cry.

I also think similarly about the advice on here to always suggest a sling straight away anytime anyone has an unsettled baby. I must have very odd babies because both of mine absolutely hated a sling!

TheProsAndConsOfHitchhiking Sun 16-Feb-14 21:15:09

I have never contributed to a sleep thread but I have read them a few times with a face like this hmm

I completely understand what You are saying Op!

Jeregrette Sun 16-Feb-14 21:15:37

My 3 year old still wakes up once or twice. Just recently she's gone through on occasion. I might have cracked the holy grail.

Of course I always wished she'd sleep through the night but breast feeding and co-sleeping and perhaps my refusal to force her to night wean too soon got in the way.

Lots of people I know have bad sleepers in one way or another. Mine are always in bed by 7 but I know lots of people who can't get theirs to stay in bed in the first place.

dietcokeandwine Sun 16-Feb-14 21:16:04

I agree, OP (although I also agree with Steben - this will kick off!).

The general attitude to sleep on MN seems to be almost entirely based around the theory that 'you either get a good sleeper or you don't; it's all down to luck.'

Which I just don't get.

Imagine someone starting a thread asking about how you teach children good manners and getting responses saying 'oh, you either get a well mannered child or you don't, it's all down to luck!'

Surely with all these things there is the nature/nurture argument, and to be fair in most other aspects of life there seems to be a healthy acknowledgement on MN that all children are different, but that parental support and involvement and sensible strategies can influence outcomes - i.e. that a reluctant reader can be helped to enjoy it, that a fussy eater can be encouraged to try new things, etc etc.

But not with sleep. Oh no, not sleep. Sleep is all down to luck.

I thought this was going to be about all the advice to do sleep training of some sort!

I know people who co-sleep and people who don't.
I don't know any babies who slept through consistently at 8 months.

I do know people lie about babies sleep. I did, it saves unwanted advice!

WillowB Sun 16-Feb-14 21:16:16

Ok slightly different perspective. I would say nearly all of my friends babies and my own slept through by 8 months. My DS was one of the last & he cracked it at about 6 months. I don't think its unreasonable to expect an 8 month old to sleep through.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:16:19

well some children were left to cry for a little bit in the hope they would self settle and IT DIDN'T WORK

fgs we would all rather get some sleep you know

StickEmUpBigStyle Sun 16-Feb-14 21:17:34

My friend co sleeps. I believe her and her son in 1 bedroom, her dh in another.

ProfessorSkullyMental Sun 16-Feb-14 21:17:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:18:11

But even MY children started to sleep through at some point. Just not when they were babies. The manners analogy is not really that helpful, most children don't have particularly good manners when they are too young to get it, just as most babies don't sleep through until they are old enough to get it.

MigGril Sun 16-Feb-14 21:19:00

well not many 8 month old sleep through the night. I know lots of so called bad sleepers, but I think it's actually totally normal.
I know a few people who cosleep, and we had a bedside cot for DS. But I know that doesn't work for everyone, and cosleeping isn't recommended if your bottle feeding.
I wish I'd been on MN when I had DD she didn't sleep great but I was too scared to cosleep. Wish I'd had more support to, I would have had more sleep then instead of spending hours awake in her room in the middle of the night.

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:19:40

Was I lucky though? Really?

So if a child sleeps through its just luck and has nothing to do with the fucking effort the parent has put in to getting that child to sleep through?

Jesus. I should just give up with this "parenting" malarkey then. I should quit the effort and just wait and see how my kids turn out.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:19:48

When the baby wakes up we try to get them to go back to sleep! We don't just give up and get up in the middle of the night. We are training them to sleep, it is just that it takes a fair while to work.

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 21:20:02

are people really comparing teaching manners to a child to 'teaching' them to sleep through?

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:20:24

And if you are lucky it happens sooner rather than later, that is where the luck comes in

mrscog Sun 16-Feb-14 21:20:35

Martroshkadoll it depends on the age of the baby/child. When DS was tiny (8 months and under, I would clear my side of the bed of pillows and duvets, making a nice expanse of mattress. I'd then wear a dressing gown to bed and just have a duvet over my waist and DS would be next to me in a sleeping bag or with an extra blanket over him. Once they get to 8/9 months they're big enough just to plonk in with you as they move around tons anyway.

anothernumberone Sun 16-Feb-14 21:20:54

TBH I think a fixation with sleeping though comes from not feeding lying down in bed asleep I know plenty of women who cosleep and I did on my last child, you can sleep almost right though feeds yourself once you get a boob out so baby sleeping through does not matter too much. When I ff the older ones, sleeping through mattered as a bottle took up to 40 minutes to do in the middle of the night feeds and you needed to be wide awake for them.

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 21:21:19

and parents who have children who don't sleep through don't put in effort? Bloody hell this gets better. Do you think they CHOOSE to be up constantly through the night? That they don't try things to help them sleep better?

I really hope nobody struggling with sleep deprivation due to a bad sleeper reads this thread

TheGreatHunt Sun 16-Feb-14 21:21:41

There was a study that showed that 50% of babies were sleeping through by 6 months.

So it's hardly unusual when babies don't.

Wossname Sun 16-Feb-14 21:21:44

My first slept fine, pretty much. Never for 12 hours or past 5.30am, but it was manageable. My second only slept if lying next to me, holding my hand and snuggled into my arm. I cannot tell you how obnoxious I find the mum I know with one 2 month old who now sleeps 12 hours without a night feed, in their own room. 12 hours! And she of course thinks it because she's 'doing it right' and others do it wrong.

God it annoys me grin

treaclesoda Sun 16-Feb-14 21:21:49

Nearly everyone I know in real life has co slept at some point, because it's either that or not sleep at all. When DC were small, we put them in their gro-bag, between us and outside the duvet. I was never worried about rolling over on them because I was very aware of them being there and I'm not a heavy sleeper anyway. DS is a toddler and still sleeps between us a lot of the time. It's not ideal but I'd rather this than spend hours and hours trying to settle him back in his own bed. He'll grow out of it when he doesn't need us as much, and if I'm honest I'll miss it, I love that he feels happiest with us.

Jeregrette Sun 16-Feb-14 21:22:19

Matryoshka doll "How do you do it? Put them on top of the duvet between you both and cover them with a blanket? Or have them under the duvet with you?"

I slept on a futon mattress downstairs (DH upstairs). I had a duvet over me. DD slept under blankets next to me on futon but not under or on duvet. You should never have them under the duvet with you. That's very dangerous (risk of smothering and overheating). I always personally slept very lightly when she was waking me up every hour/two hours or so.

Smartiepants79 Sun 16-Feb-14 21:22:29

I agree to a certain extent.
Within my circle of acquaintances it is not particularly normal for an 8 month old to be waking thru the night.
I do also agree with the co-sleeping thing. I have never met anyone who co-sleeps and No it is not the answer to most people's sleep problems.
However, I would expect most people want their baby to sleep thru but just can't stomach what you have to go thru to get that.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:23:07

I know Sirzy, I am that person struggling with a bad sleeper grin

Really people, I would bloody LOVE it if my child would sleep all night. Short of leaving them to cry on and on and on and on, what do you suggest?

AgentZigzag Sun 16-Feb-14 21:23:47

Putting the DDs in their cots when they first went down and in with us when they woke up was the best time ever, nothing like it. Not just because they'd go straight back to sleep, but it just felt so right. I reveled in it.

Possibly because of the hormones, but I didn't sleep as deeply when they were babies and always knew they were there or woke up as soon as they stirred.

We have two single duvets and DD2 was in a gro-bag in between us, she stayed there until she was 2/3 YO then went in her own bed no probs.

I'm not sure why me saying what worked for us would wind anyone up though, or why it makes me soft. I enjoyed having them in bed next to me as babies, why would I do anything else just because of what other people have found works for them?

TheGreatHunt Sun 16-Feb-14 21:24:10

I will also add, as smug sleep spokes people get on my tits, that many sleep issues are not caused by parents "who don't want their babies to sleep through" but by factors such as intolerances, reflux, tongue tie which are not widely understood and go undiagnosed.
Having suffered with two non sleepers despite my best efforts I can only say well done to those who had it easy but it was all down to their hard work

Lemonfairydust Sun 16-Feb-14 21:24:28

Erm... Because it IS normal for an 8 month old baby to wake through the night?

What advice from MNers makes you suggest that they don't want babies to sleep through?

I'm going to assume it's because people tend not to immediately suggest CIO? If people want a thread of people telling them to try CIO, then they should say so, not then comment that the advice given is unhelpful because no-one eased their guilt suggesting it

sleepyhead Sun 16-Feb-14 21:24:38

In rl I know many babies who don't sleep through. I'm quite surprised you don't know any.

Mine for one. A textbook 7-7er from around 12 weeks to 23 weeks, and then woke every 2 hours because of teething for a few weeks and now occasionally sleeps through but more often wakes once or twice. Same routine as when he was tiny and no cosleeping. His elder brother didn't have nearly such a good routine and we coslept for the first 6 weeks, but he was sleeping through long before this. Go figure.

My friend with 2yr old twins has one twin who goes 7-7 and the other wakes 2 or 3 times a night. They have a rock solid routine and were in their own room from very early on. Same routine used with their older sister who went 7-7 from 8 weeks. Again, go figure.

We'd all of us like a good night's sleep. Have a little empathy.

BeeInYourBonnet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:26:10

Totally agree OP.

There are often VERY unhelpful posts about sleep.

And babies waking up multiple times at 8mo is not my experience or that of most mums I know (apart from a couple who have struggled with years of lack of sleep).

I always feel frustrated that there never seems to be anywhere in the middle of GF v cosleeping.

TeacupDrama Sun 16-Feb-14 21:26:29

I am sort of with you OP I would not expect an 8 month old never ever ever to wake but I think most babies do sleep 6-8 hour stretches at least by that age,I only know 2 families in RL that had prolonged sleeping problems my DD slept from 11pm to 5.30-6am when 8 weeks old I know that is highly unusual but most people i know babies were sleeping from 7-8pm to 6am by 6 months the majority of the time

I do not know anyone who co-sleeps as a definite choice from birth to toddler stage, know lots who breast fed and maybe kept baby in bed after 2/3am feed but not that continued co-sleeping past 4-6 months

TBH I think people whose babies did sleep regularly through night keep quiet so not too make other mums feel bad and also to protect themselves from accusations that they must have done Gina ford or controlled crying because it does not happen naturally; or they will have sleep regression etc; when in my opinion with my child it just did happen naturally and carried on that way, this does not mean some children and babies do not have real problems sleeping etc but maybe as with everything else in life positive things are repeated less often if people go to a really good restaurant on average they tell 3 people a bad restaurant they tell 11, same with horrible childbirth stories etc

it's just life you can boast about your child's sporting or music achievements but do not mention they are better than average at maths or any other academic subject

if your child sleeps through night before 6 months, does not projectile vomit; does not need a change of clothes 3-4 times a day just keep quiet

Timpani Sun 16-Feb-14 21:26:59

Sleep is one of the things that I have to have sorted.

Lucky you! Some children don't sleep through til much older - totally normal! Why don't you read about infants and sleep? The Isis website with research from Durham University is very good. Babies aren't meant to sleep through from a young age - it's about instincts and survival. My DS didn't sleep through reliably til he was 18 months. Nothing we did or didn't do. And of course I wanted more sleep but I was prepared to put up with it because I knew it was normal. Giving people the idea that it's not sets them up to fail!

I co-slept and know loads of other who have too. Do you know how most cultures co-sleep? As humans it's completely natural, like with other mammals. Again, do some reading around and you'll see!

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:27:11

and parents who have children who don't sleep through don't put in effort? Bloody hell this gets better. Do you think they CHOOSE to be up constantly through the night? That they don't try things to help them sleep better?

Where did I say that?

By saying that I am LUCKY you are implying I didn't have to do fuck all to get my kids to sleep. When that's just not true.

Don't twist my words.

I dragged dd into bed to desperately try for sleep between 2 days and 11mths. It works if bf. Unsure if bottle.

I selot on my side along the edge. Dh slept other edge. Dd slept in middle. Both of us wore jumpers as a duvet so kept that lower down. I had moments of being terrified but never actually squashed her. I never drank though. Didnt dare.

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:28:38

And ofcourse I am LUCKY so I never read up about sleep!!! Oh no. Not at all.


SS3J Sun 16-Feb-14 21:28:39

Yanbu. I cannot stand the assumption that it's just fine to survive on no sleep. But I got this a lot in real life, haven't so much experience of mn sleep advice. I just remember feeling such despair when asking for help as dd only slept 45 mins at a time day or night and being told by everyone that 'it's normal'. That is not helpful when you feel as if you are going to die from sleep deprivation. To be honest, I'd rather have had someone say 'get her in a routine - here are some tips'! Eventually I figured it out for myself, but much pain could have been avoided!

Superworm Sun 16-Feb-14 21:28:43

People lie about this.

My friend whose baby 'sleeps through' gets up 2-3 times a night to replace a blankie.

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 21:29:41

Erm I have a 22 month and frankly would be amazed if she slept through the night and most people I know apart from the sleep trainers are the same.....I had no expectation of sleeping through at 8 months. Some babies do but none I know of. But then everyone I know breastfeeds and does the whole attachment parenting thing. Depends who you hang out with I think. But I just accept babies are wired to wake up to feed. I hope by two to be maybe sleeping till dawn...that would be amazing.

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 21:30:17

Panda,, I am not twisting your words. I am going off what you have said. You are putting the idea that hard work = child sleeping through. Therefore implying that people who don't have children who sleep through don't work hard to try to change things.

No twisting of words but if you start putting things down to hard work then surely you have to see why people will take that badly?

a lot of whether a child sleeps well is down to luck, as can be seen by the amount of people who have more than one child but with very different sleeping patterns/routines.

dietcokeandwine Sun 16-Feb-14 21:30:59

Sirzy, you are missing the point a bit.

What I was trying (probably badly) to explain was my perception that the MN view is that there is no point in trying to help a child to sleep any better. No point in doing anything, because luck and only luck is what ensures a child will sleep.

Which is unutterable bollocks. It isn't all down to luck. Nothing about parenting is all down to luck! Any aspect of parenting, whether it's sleep, food, behaviour, whatever, is going to be influenced by a mixutre of what you do as a parent, and what your child's nature is, surely?

Some children will naturally be better sleepers than others, of course they will. But there are thing that parents can do that might help poorer sleepers sleep better, and by the same token things they can do that might make things worse. Surely it's only common sense to acknowledge that?

Sleep is not down to luck and luck alone!

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 21:31:46

Most people I know co sleep. My neighbour uses a crib but the wife works and dad stays home so they really work better that way as she stopped breastfeeding earlier. I think they sleep longer on formula is my impression. Whatever works for you. I cannot bear to think of the cortisone flooding the brain with the crying when I know I can so easily comfort by feeding.

TheOnlySeven Sun 16-Feb-14 21:31:56

DD1 is 2 and always comes into our bed in the night . She was sleeping through and then was ill and sleep has been a problem since. We co sleep because it's better than no sleep, but I don't like it and long for her to spend all night in her own bed!

anothernumberone Sun 16-Feb-14 21:32:11

I have to say when I had only the bottle feeding experience to go on I thought everyone whose lo's didn't sleep through must have been shattered all the time. That was not my experience of bf. It honestly did not bother me that he was not sleeping. When I went back to work he woke even more, reverse cycling as he was missing daytime feeds and I loved it because it meant I got snuggles in the nighttime. He wasn't co sleeping at that stage, 1 year but he would wake up and climb out of his bed and climb into ours for feeds. As long as they are not up for the day at an ungodly hour which would drive me crazy I am happy enough and I love my sleep.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:34:51

dietcokeandwine, but what do you think we DO when our babies wake up? We try to get them to go back to sleep!

arethereanyleftatall Sun 16-Feb-14 21:34:51

Well said tea cup and diet coke.

sleepyhead Sun 16-Feb-14 21:35:27

Well it's not if you're going in to the room and poking the baby with a stick, or putting Red Bull in its bottle, but otherwise... Yeh, my experience is that it's largely down to luck.

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 21:35:44

I have already said there are things you can do to help encourage sleep but that doesn't guarantee they will sleep which is why comparing it to something much easier to control such as teaching manners is madness.

I think the worst thing we can ever do though for a parent who is struggling is to try to make out that it is abnormal for a young child to be a bad sleeper - it isn't and realising that helps so much in trying to deal with it.

BeeInYourBonnet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:35:56

Agree with Teacup - I never used to 'go on' about my DCs sleeping through, in case someone punched me grin

Some people are okay with cosleeping, responding to every little sound etc. But some people are going INSANE from lack of sleep and desperately need help. Telling them this is completely normal til 2yo or whenever, is not helpful.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:36:07

Also no one has answered my question - except for CIO, what do you suggest I do?

Koothrapanties Sun 16-Feb-14 21:36:24

Ss3j that is what annoyed me. I was getting to the point where dd waking at stupid o clock in the morning ready to play was making me incredibly sleep deprived and run down that I couldn't cope. To be told that it was normal and given very little constructive advice was really quite souls destroying. I was told by one poster to watch tv! That isn't going to help when i can barely function during the day!

DomesticSlobbess Sun 16-Feb-14 21:36:25

YANBU. Everytime I see a sleep related thread I know the general consensus will be to bring baby in with you or just accept. There will be a few who will offer advice to get baby to sleep, but the majority seem to accept co-sleeping or not much sleep!

DS was in his own room at 4 months and his sleep improved drastically compared to being in a room with us where just one cough would wake him up. I can't remember when exactly, but he was definitely sleeping all the way through at 8 months. 7pm-6am. His is 3 now and on the rare occassion will wake in the night but it take two seconds to get him to go back to sleep. I personally wouldn't co-sleep and DS having his own room since 4 months has worked out fine for us.

bakingaddict Sun 16-Feb-14 21:36:52

You do know mumsnet is a cross section of parenthood. Some people will have babies that sleep others wont. Some people spout shit others post useful advice. Take the good advice and the bad or failing that seek proper advice from a health visitor but to be all sanctimonious is just plain nasty

ExcuseTypos Sun 16-Feb-14 21:36:58

Babies are ALL different.

DD1- slept through from 3 months. Not a peep from her form 7.00- 6.00

Dd2 slept through at 2 and a halfhmm. I did cosleep or I think I would have died from tiredness.

Lots of 8 month old babies don't sleep through the night. It is quite common.

arethereanyleftatall Sun 16-Feb-14 21:38:04

I am sure there are some babies where it doesn't matter what you do, they will not sleep through.
But, I believe there are also cases where it is indeed the parents 'fault' - going in every 2 seconds, to check they're ok, over panicking etc

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:38:31

But sirzy, I have been told on this thread to read up on sleep. Because I am so LUCKY that it is assumed that I would never have had to do that. Wtf is that all about?

I had sleepless nights with both my kids. I had (and am still having) sleep regressions. Night waking here and there. But by and large my kids sleep through 7-7 because it is a routine that isn't broken. I don't read bedtime stories because I believe they overstimulate and I respond to night waking on a case by case basis. Genuine need is responded to. A bit of a cry is ignored. My kids are both happy and well adjusted.

From my experience of threads on here about non sleepers, when CC or CIO is suggested the OP immediately shuts it down. I am sure there are parents who have tried everything and it doesn't work, but that doesn't make them UNLUCKY.

To say I am LUCKY is so patronizing and undermining its unreal.

maras2 Sun 16-Feb-14 21:39:22

Ahh. Some babies sleep, some don't. Can't remember much about my 2 but I have never , ever had a child in my bed. Now I have DGC's overnight every so often; one sleeps 12 hours the other two are little monkeys but eventually settle.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:39:40

still, no actual advice on what I should do

it is dark
it is quiet
my baby had reflux so has to be propped up
I don't feed with every waking

what should I be doing?

My DD slept through from 8 weeks 7-7. No going in for blankets, dummy replacement or anything else. Can count on one hand the times she has woken through the night and she's now 4. DS on the other hand has been less good. Still started sleeping through at 16 weeks, but is a bit more hit and miss in terms of the fact that we can go several months without any night waking and then maybe have a week or so where he wakes once per night, generally for a bottle. So I know it's dependent on the individual child and I have friends whose children really struggle with sleeping.

I agree to an extent though OP and it annoys me when posters on here suggest that anyone who says their baby sleeps through is lying or economical with the truth... They are all different.

MamaPain Sun 16-Feb-14 21:41:54

Completely agree OP, yanbu.

The thing is you won't catch me or others like me on a sleep thread that often. In the past I've tried to post what I believe to be genuinely helpful advice only to be told I'm being unrealistic, despite the fact I have had very real success with numerous very real babies.

I've never co-slept because I have always been someone, who even with a newborn, sleeps like a log, DH has on occasion had to slap or shake me to wake me up so for our family it would have been dangerous.

I also would expect an 8month old baby to sleep through the night and would consider one that didn't to be a bad sleeper and in need of some attention in that area.

I actually think mn loves a bit of sleep martyrdom, and all this I didn't sleep properly for 3/5/7/15 years can get a bit competitive. People who feel they've been through hell, and that's what sleep deprivation is, probably find it hard to hear someone else had it worse. Also I think there can be an element of the 'being a good mother' by suffering for your child, similar to those who love going on about not having a night out since their child was born. I say let them crack on, I don't give a shit, I get 8 hours a night minimum.

FadBook Sun 16-Feb-14 21:42:44

Superworm said this earlier and I think it is spot on:

I think most parents want their child to sleep through. Some just don't. MN normalises that

It's not about not wanting babies to sleep through, it's about babies naturally and instinctively waking regularly for milk or a cuddle. How many times do you, as an adult, wake in the night for a sip of water, or a squeeze with the other half? It's normal for humans to do this, but for some reason it's become very normal to expect a baby (and toddler) to sleep 12 hours each night. Some parents' (not all) perceptions are skewed in western society IMO.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:42:48

none of you have any useful information on what I should be doing, do you?

Except for leaving them to cry.

BeeInYourBonnet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:43:00

If my friends DD doesn't go to sleep and starts grizzling, my friends gets her back out of bed and brings her downstairs. She could try MANY other ways of dealing with this that would reinforce better sleeping.

Another friend has spent the last FIVE years spending upwards of 3 HOURS a night in her DDs room to 'help' her try to get to sleep. She seems to think the only alternative is for her to leave her crying.

And I have a number of friends who suddenly decided one day that 'enough was enough' and expected babies who have previously never been encouraged to self settle, to get themselves to sleep using CIO!

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:44:17

DS was in his own room at 4 months and his sleep improved drastically compared to being in a room with us where just one cough would wake him up.

We struggled on with dd2 until nearly 7 months because her room is at the other side of the house to ours. But once we moved her she went from waking regularly to sleeping through. We assumed it was our snoring/coughing/bed creaking that was disturbing her.

thegreylady Sun 16-Feb-14 21:44:49

I have never known a baby over about 8 months who does not usually sleep through for 10 hours unless they are ill or teething. I had 2 dc and 9 dgc and this was so however I feel it is more luck than good management.

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 21:44:50

But a lot of it IS down to luck, not all of it but some of it. It really is and you don't seem to want to accept that but it is the case. Just like a lot of other things to do with children are down to 'luck'

Seriously though, this idea that people have that all children are the same and will all conform to the same norms of what we want from them is so wrong. Why can't we just accept that differnet children will struggle with different things and provide support rather than trying to make out that you are someone who doesn't struggle with that is somehow 'superior' as a parent?

I am lucky that DS eats well, but I would never attempt to make out that meant that other parents who struggle to get their child to eat have done something wrong, or aren't trying enough or any of the other things which have suggested/implied by posters on this thread with regards to sleeping.

It is good to here peoples different experiences, and different peoples approaches can help parents consider new things which may help with whatever struggle they have. Hearing other parents are in the same boat also helps massively but some of the comments on here would simply make a parent feel rubbish and is that what we really want?

TisforTiger Sun 16-Feb-14 21:45:28

Can't be arsed to read the whole thread. But in reponse to OP.

I would Love my 15mo (yes read that 15 mo) to sleep through. But he does not. It is not because I do not want him to or because I have not tried (ha ha ha you have no idea) but HE does not sleep through.

I don't know of your DC is your PFB but not all children are the same and not all solutions are the same. Why be so judgy? Also I have some news for you that I learnt early on from MN as a new parent your friends will be not telling you the truth. I know this because all my friends believe that my DS sleeps through "unless he has a cold/teething".

Please don't suggest that other people are making poor choices when it comes to trying to get their children to sleep. You do not know. If you don't like advice you have been given on MN ignore it and move on to the advice you agree with (which seems pointless to me).

Good luck with your DC sleep though as one thing we can all be united in is that sleep deprivation sucks.

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 21:47:02

Look some babies just don,t sleep through.....I am knackered but I accept it. I do not want to CIO. But if I was going insane with sleep deprivation maybe I would have to out my beds above the bay so I did not go under but till that point I put up with two night wakings because I do not want my child distressed when I can ease that distress. I guess that is my parenting philosophy. My child' s needs are more important than mine within reason, because my child cannot address their needs but is relying on me until she is older. I think cribs are a weird concept but I realise that is just because of what I have done. I worked with an anthropologist once and suffice to say the babies I encountered never cried in the night as they were co sleeping. That made such an impression on me that when I had my own I tried it and I do not know how anyone rests easy with a small baby in a crib. I realise this is because I am so at ease with co sleeping. Many babies take a long time to sleep more than 5 or 6 hours. I take that as a norm.

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 21:47:35

I would have to put my needs above my baby.s needs I meant!

SS3J Sun 16-Feb-14 21:48:08

HumphreyCobbler, I would live to give you some advice, but unfortunately, as this thread shows, it's really difficult to do without knowing you and your baby. What finally worked for me was starting a feeding routine during the day so that I was sure she was feeding well then. I then gradually cut down night feeds (you don't have to leave him/her to cry, but use other ways of settling). It worked for me, but obviously won't for everyone. Feeding on demand was not healthy for me and my dd but I know most people swear by it.

Koothrapanties Sun 16-Feb-14 21:49:09

Humphrey - I'm not sure if u actually want advice or are trying to prove a point but dd is a reflux baby and we are really getting there with her sleep.

I have found that immediately responding when she wakes and feeding if it has been a while since last feed usually settles her back down. I know the advice is not to feed to sleep, but it seems to work. If too soon since last feed I start by trying shh shh pat, stroking her head or tummy and trying to soothe her like that. If that fails I pick her up and pat her bum until she goes to sleep before putting her back down. No talking, no eye contact. Repeat ad nauseum!

If she gets in a pickle and cries every time I put her down, I do a reset. I get up with her, play, change her bum and ten start bedtime again.

Gradually she has stretched out the time between wakings, no cc or anything.

sleepyhead Sun 16-Feb-14 21:51:03

Hmm, see I think "unless ill or teething" is a little disingenuous if you're talking about an 8 month old. Both my dss cut their first tooth at 4 months. By 1 year they both had at least 8 teeth. Factor in winter colds and they spent the greater part of their first year either ill or teething. Ds2 is still a rubbish 10mo sleeper though.

TodayIsAGoodDay Sun 16-Feb-14 21:52:35

The fact is, sleep threads are far more likely to be read by parents whose babies aren't sleeping well. I was an avid follower when dd was younger but rarely bother now as touches wood she seems very settled.

It also seems that in RL, parents like to lie boast about how 'good' their babies are, but on MN we're more at ease about sharing our woes. If that makes sense...

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 21:53:08

But I am not claiming to be a superior parent. And I don't go on sleep threads for the very reason that I don't want to be called that.

My kids eat well too. So I tend to stay away from the picky eaters threads too.

Honestly, what I did was I watched my aunts and uncles have babies (I was oldest of my generation, and there's 10 years between me and the oldest of my cousins) and I saw all the things they did, and the consequences of those things, and when I had my babies I made a conscious effort that if my babies were NT they were not going to need their back rubbed for 3 hours every single night to get them to sleep. And they were not going to poke their dinner round their plate for an hour and then be given crisps. And they were not going to get to the age of 6 with no respect for other people.

Its not been easy. It might make me sound like a knob. It might make me sound super strict.

I am none of those things. I rarely tell anyone that, and I don't judge other people for doing it differently. I just resent being called LUCKY.

LittleMilla Sun 16-Feb-14 21:53:14

Pleased that I'm not the only one.

I have two boys - one is 7.5 mo and the other will be 3 in May. Their sleep is a precious commodity that requires continuous work. Ds2 first slept through at 8 weeks shock but has been ill/teething since. He's now sleeping through again but it hasn't been easy.

I just cannot understand why there are so few pointers. DH often asks me to ask MN (as we usually do for everything behaviour etc related) but I said the other day there's no point.

I made the conscious choice to co-sleep from Birth.

I am from Native American background and it is normal to do this, that is how I was influenced by the women in my family who I listened to and observed growing up.

I couldn't sleep unless my babies were next to me.

The same with BF for up to two years old.

I couldn't be bothered "justifying" this, to others, so I lied.

But so do others, I can remember overhearing two Mums, one from over the road and one living at the back of me, talking about how "good" their baby's were. Both used to wake me more than my own ever did. They both used the CIO method, which seemed to go on for weeks.

I now have the confidence to "admit" to co-sleeping. When I have my Nephew overnight, I co-slept with him, as his Mum does. We know how to co-sleep safely and the HV, or anyone else has been told this clearly.

I don't care what anyone else does, as long as it isn't abusive.

GoshAnneGorilla Sun 16-Feb-14 21:53:57

YANBU! I cannot bear the competitive martyrdom on the subject. Sleep and "How I suffered to breastfeed" always seems to bring out tons of posters trying to outdo each other in a bizarre mix of misery and smugness.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:54:01

SS3J, thanks for responding

I make sure I feed regularly through the day, my other children did too, but it still didn't make them sleep through at eight months!

I was trying to make the point that all of us who have reluctant sleepers DO do stuff to try and help, that the OP is false in her premise that we just give up in the face of sleeplessness.

arethereanyleftatall Sun 16-Feb-14 21:54:10

Great post mama pain.
It appears on MN as if noones child sleeps through, because for all of us whose children do, if we post on any sleep thread we are immediately flamed for being 'smug' or 'lucky'. So, noone posts, except posters whose kids also don't sleep. And then it appears as if no child ever sleeps thru.

MamaPain Sun 16-Feb-14 21:55:11

Humphrey, I read back through your posts but I couldn't see certain things.

How old is your baby?
What is her current sleep pattern?
Where/How does she sleep?
Does she nap during the day?
What is the bedtime routine?
When do you feed her during the day and run up to bedtime?

DC3 had terrible reflux and I really had to put the hours in to achieve good sleep.

dietcokeandwine Sun 16-Feb-14 21:55:20

Sirzy I am trying to say pretty much the same things as you but you are probably expressing it better grin I have had wine I apologise for the manners analogy but it was the first one that came into my head.

Yes luck is always involved - to some extent - but surely parents can have an influence to some degree in any aspect of parenting. It is the MN view that any good sleeper is down to luck alone and nothing the parent can do will have any effect whatsoever that drives me doo la lally bonkers.

katese11 Sun 16-Feb-14 21:55:35

My 8 mo Co sleeper slept just fine. At 21mo in her own room? Not so well....She's had different patterns at different times. And her brother was different again. I don't understand people who think they have sleep sorted when every child is different!

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 21:55:56

I haven't said that you are lucky they sleep i said a LOT of it is down to luck and that is what you seem to be missing. Great that those choices you made and worked hard for worked for you and your family but that doesn't mean the same will work for other families. it also doesn't mean if you had another child the same will work again. Everyone is different.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 21:56:20

Gosh Pandafeet, do you think that ALL people who have picky eaters give in and offer crisps? Is that why you think all people with non sleepers get up and have a party in the middle of the night when baby wakes us?

FWIW my older children sleep brilliantly now...

CoteDAzur Sun 16-Feb-14 21:56:24

YANBU. I've never heard of people like the mums on MN sleep threads, who cosleep and breastfeed on demand until their 'babies' are 2, 3 or whatever, who would rather be delirious with sleep deprivation than sleep train their babies.

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 21:57:20

A lucky super strict knob Panda?
That was a joke. Good for you. But the sleeping is different from manners which kids do not really get till they are older anyway....some kids do sleep better than others. You cannot stop your child waking. They wake. You deal with it. Or you let them cry themselves back to sleep. But you cannot control, if they wake.

TisforTiger Sun 16-Feb-14 21:58:24

humphry - no advice apart from surely our children will sleep through at some point! (And then we can join all the judgy MN posters about how patents of non sleepers must not be trying hard enough).

Jeregrette Sun 16-Feb-14 21:58:30

I once met someone who said their baby slept through at a week old. That I just can't believe (surely a newborn can't drink enough to keep them going all night) but I suppose on the spectrum it is possible,

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 21:59:58

Yes, if sleep training involves leaving a baby to cry, I take mild delirium. Parenting puts you in this state anyway to some degree. What is a bit more delirium....really over teaching
a baby that it can not communicate its need....well it can , but it must learn it will be ignored. That I find very peculiar and unnurturing.

undecidedindecisive Sun 16-Feb-14 22:00:46

It looks a bit like the people who have experienced babies who will sleep long stretches find it annoying to be called lucky. And the people whose babies wake frequently are finding it annoying that they are being blamed for 'not wanting their babies to sleep through the night' - i.e. not trying hard enough.

So Group A have babies who sleep long stretches and so are more rested and cross about not having the credit for this.
Group B have babies who wake lots and so are tired (understatement) and are cross about being blamed for this.

I'd kind of prefer to have the sleep and mild irritation about not getting parenting brownie points. I'm sure that feeling a bit more sane and having longer sleep stretches would have enabled me to cope with this particular parenting critique. On the other hand, when I was barely keeping it together with sleep deprivation, the idea that it was all my own fault and I just hadn't tried hard enough was enough to make me sob.

BeeInYourBonnet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:02:08

I'm not judgy about people who's dcs don't sleep through. But I am a bit judgy about people who moan about it but don't do anything positive to encourage better sleeping (like the examples I mentioned upthread). And then try to make out people who have worked very hard to encourage better sleep (and NOT by CC, CIO etc) are just lucky.

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:02:26

Gosh Pandafeet, do you think that ALL people who have picky eaters give in and offer crisps? Is that why you think all people with non sleepers get up and have a party in the middle of the night when baby wakes us?

Gosh Humphrey, are you purposely trying to twist what I am saying?

I posted about what I witnessed in my family. Not about what I think other mumsnetters do in their own homes.

My brother is a picky eater, as is my partner. Neither my mum or MIL gave crisps after dinner.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 22:02:38

mamapain, thank you for your offer to help

DS3 is five months
He is fed on demand
He naps half an hour at nine, an hour or two at midday and half an hour at five.
He goes down to sleep at eight in the carseat after a feed (his other naps he is not fed to sleep) as he needs propping up and I am keeping him in the room due to SIDS advice.
I have tried an amby nest but it didn't help.
We co sleep out of desperation.
I am really hoping that solid food will help as his current waking pattern is completely random.

My point is still that I AM trying, I DO try, I don't just give just doesn't work for my babies until about 14 months

alarkthatcouldpray Sun 16-Feb-14 22:03:07

Definitely luck involved in whether your baby sleeps or not! DD1 slept (kind of), DD2 most certainly didn't. Parented the same way (not sure how parenting would vary very much at that stage anyway if you take feeding style and weaning out of the equation, which I seem to remember from my own reading have little impact on sleep). They were both breastfed and weaned at six months onto finger foods.

No bedtime story = a good sleeper? Okaaaay. Now that is patronising. To think the patents of poor sleepers haven't tried every bloody permutation of routine going in order to try and secure some sleep.

You may as well say whether you have a vaginal delivery, manage to breast feed, have a child who bites or not, one who tantrums or not is all down to Moral Fibre or lack thereof. All of which would be utter nonsense.

I am astounded at the complete lack of sympathy some people have for the parents of non sleepers. I encountered it in RL as well. And despite this I never lied about it. It was about showing solidarity to be honest about how crap it was.

OP YANBU - there are gentle methods of sleep training but they are involve lengthy explanation and have to be quite specifically tailored to your baby and what exact stage they are at re sleep. I never venture onto the sleep threads as it would bring back bad memories even though I could probably help in some cases. The No Cry Sleep Solution basically lays out what I tried to do instinctively.

TodayIsAGoodDay Sun 16-Feb-14 22:03:07

Spot on undecidedindecisive

MamaPain Sun 16-Feb-14 22:03:22

Fadbook, I'm really surprised by your post. I personally don't wake up at all during the night unless something happens to wake me (cat jumping on my head, child screaming, phone ringing, that sort of thing), I would say I generally sleep through solidly. Now I am aware that I'm a deep sleeper, but a quick survey of the 7 adults in our house and only one of them wakes regularly during the night, even then it's a recent thing put down to age. All the children in this house also sleep through.

Is regular waking during the night very common in adults?

I am not talking about insomnia by the way, which I have experienced as part of an intense case of stress, and is very different to waking for sips of water.

BeeInYourBonnet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:03:38

And people who have had success in improving sleeping patterns, should be able to provide advice to those asking for advice, without being labelled as smug, lucky or some vicious CC advocate.

soupmaker Sun 16-Feb-14 22:04:36

Oh, how marvellous. A thread full of experts who can tell me what I'm doing wrong when it comes to getting my 6 month old DD2 to sleep through the night.

I mean clearly I am getting it all wrong, but I really, really want her to sleep through.

So come on then, what's the solution when you have a generally very happy baby, who is EBF and feeds well during the day, naps brilliantly, self settles for naps and at bed time with very little fuss, and rarely cries during the day unless hurt or really knackered. She feeds at least twice overnight and can be difficult to get back to sleep if awake after 4am.

So looking forward to being put right.

RabbitRabbit78 Sun 16-Feb-14 22:04:46

YANBU because so is everyone else on this thread apparently..!

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 22:05:05

forgive me Pandafeet, I am somewhat sleep deprived grin

actually though, you were lucky in that what you did worked. I am UNlucky in that what I did, didn't work.

HearMyRoar Sun 16-Feb-14 22:05:41

After a while of feeling crap about it I made a conscious decision to be very open and honest in real life about dd's crap sleep. I found once I started telling people that she woke multiple times and we coslept it really surprised me how many parents who i had thought had perfect sleeping babies were in exactly the same position.

The fact is in real life there is a bit of a stigma attached to having a child that doesnt magically sleep all night by 6 months. You are given the impression that it is your fault, you are a bad parent and should try harder. That is way so many people give the impression that their babies sleep through the night when in fact they don't. So if you think that you don't know anyone whose 8 month old doesnt sleep through I would think again.

Sirzy Sun 16-Feb-14 22:07:21

Is regular waking during the night very common in adults?

I was away with a group of friends this weekend and we had this converstion, 3 out of 7 of us didn't "sleep through" to differing extents. Some people can literally sleep standing, others struggle to fall asleep. Some people sleep until there alarm others will wake up for a wee, or spend an hour staring at the ceiling reglalry.

Littleen Sun 16-Feb-14 22:07:39

Not got my baby just yet (hurry up out!), but just wanted to say that I will on purpose lie to people about how baby sleeps, as the amounts of advice given, to an as of yet unborn baby, is mental. Can't imagine how it will be once he's here, so it's easier to just say it's fine. I wouldn't expect and 8 month old to consistently sleep through though, and got to agree it's very random smile I sleep so light anything wakes me up, if I get to sleep at all! My other half however shuts his eyes, goes to sleep and wakes up for the alarm. So it's very individual as adults anyway smile

Let me get this straight- You're getting angry at being told you're lucky?...So you must be doing something we're not doing to get your babies to sleep through at 8 months?Well aren't you the best mum ever. Well done.
Please can you just leave other people alone to get a bit of support when they need it. Sleep is so important and if we have to co-sleep or rub our babies back to get some then why on earth does it bother you? confused

FadBook Sun 16-Feb-14 22:08:08

Mama - maybe it's just me and my family then grin If I go to bed too early, I wake in the night. I have a deep sleep for no longer than 2 hours, then fairly light sleep after then, or sometime dreaming and wake up all flustered because of dream.

I suppose, for me, it's normal, but for you and your family, it isn't. Kind of brings home my point that every adult is very different!

LittleMilla Sun 16-Feb-14 22:08:19

I think that the simply point that sleep threads are usually frequented by parents of rubbish sleepers probably explains the lack of constructive advice (and no I'm not talking just Cc or CIO).

I wasn't being sanctimonious grin. Just genuinely perplexed about why it all goes to shit when you ask for some constructive advice.

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:09:07

If an OP posted that her FOUR year old wouldn't go to sleep/ was waking regularly, then yes, I would tell her to cut out the bedtime story AS ONE SUGGESTION.

There are people on this thread asking for advice, and when someone gives a bit of advice they are mocked. Can't win.

SingMoreWhenYoureWinning Sun 16-Feb-14 22:09:13

none of you have any useful information on what I should be doing, do you?

Here is what I did to 'sleep train' my two. Ds1 slept through from 8 weeks, ds2 from 14 weeks. They'd both go 12 hours.

From a few weeks old:
*Bed time was ALWAYS at 7pm. At 7pm, we went to the bedroom...obviously that meant I would need to go too when they were tiny, so i'd read in bed from that time.
* I never, ever, ever took them back downstairs after bedtime. For no reason. I can count on one hand the times either of my dc have been downstairs after this time, which would only be when they're ill (they are now 6 and nearly 4)
*We would get up at 7am every morning and go downstairs. Even if we'd been up half the night. Even if the baby had only gone back to sleep at 5am.
* I did not engage with them at all between 7pm and 7am. I would rock them if needed, feed them, change their nappy. I would try and leave them in the crib as much as possible. I never played, talked to them etc. Feed, burp, bum change, back down. Cry = soothe, back down.
* I never co slept when they were babies. The exception was past 6 months (by which time, the routine was well established), if they were ill, they would possibly sleep in with me and dp.

arethereanyleftatall Sun 16-Feb-14 22:09:42

I really disagree pit. I love my children, I nurture them, I cuddle them and engage with them all day long. They are well aware they are extremely loved. 7pm onwards is grownup time. Always has been since they were about a month old. I did cio with both my girls around a month old I think. I would say they have cried in total less than 20 minutes all together their whole lives- ten minutes each day for two days,, then never cried again.I would imagine that's cumatively far far less crying than a child still waking at night and crying out at 2 yrs old.
It also means we are always all rested out to enjoy the next day. Far better for the child imo.
But, each to their own.

CoteDAzur Sun 16-Feb-14 22:10:41

"if sleep training involves leaving a baby to cry, I take mild delirium. What is a bit more delirium... over teaching a baby that it can not communicate its need....well it can , but it must learn it will be ignored."

This is a really bizarre meme. You don't know that. It is an improbable theory.

Your baby will grow and be a child. That child will want things and cry. You will sometimes need to leave him to cry for a bit rather than give him what he wants, whether it's sweets rather than food or TV at all hours.

When that happens, your child will not be taught he "can't communicate his need" or "learn he will be ignored".

A baby who is loved, taken care of, and shown affection all day every day cries for a bit for a few nights - so what, really? That doesn't mean he is being neglected, learning that nobody loves him, or his needs are ignored whatever he does. That is just absurd, and based on no evidence whatsoever.

GrumpyInYorkshire Sun 16-Feb-14 22:11:29

When I was delirious with sleep deprivation, when DS was around 9 months old and waking 3 or 4 times a night, I met up with a friend who said her two had both slept through from six weeks.

You're lucky, I said. She replied that no, it was all down to her wonderful DH and his 15-minute rule.

From birth, her two would only be responded to after 15 minutes of crying. He would apparently sit outside their room with a stopwatch (yes, separate rooms from birth) and refuse to let her see to them. No bloody wonder they both slept, then.

The point of this story? That it's rare you know what goes on in other people's homes. That what us abhorrent to one parent is normal to another. And,that, when she shared that tale with me, I was quite happy to have DS carry on waking rather than do the same.

Fwiw he began sleeping through at 10 months. Sheer luck, I didn't change a thing...

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:11:58

Let me get this straight- You're getting angry at being told you're lucky?...So you must be doing something we're not doing to get your babies to sleep through at 8 months?Well aren't you the best mum ever. Well done.
Please can you just leave other people alone to get a bit of support when they need it. Sleep is so important and if we have to co-sleep or rub our babies back to get some then why on earth does it bother you?

Do I go on sleep threads? No.

Is this a thread asking for sleep advice? No.

Is this a thread talking about sleep and sleep advice? Yes.

I won't leave anyone alone because there is no one that I am specifically targetting.

What an odd post.

MamaPain Sun 16-Feb-14 22:11:59

Humphrey, have you considered weaning him earlier? Obviously it is easier for me to consider that as I first became a parent quite a while ago when there weren't these restrictions ages to start weaning.

Is the issue currently that he just wakes up in the night or is there ever a problem getting him to sleep in the first place?

Does he have a dummy?

Also when you say you're keeping him in the room, do you mean you don't want him moved out of where you sleep or that he is always in the same room as you, such as if you were reading in the kitchen when he slept, he would be there too

May be a strange question, but do you ever just give him water rather than milk?

Can i just say both mine are teenagers now, They sleep all night and all day given the choice, when they were babies, i think they were both waking up at least once a night a night at 8 months but i cant remember, so in the end all children will sleep, Of course now i wake up three times a night and cant sleep at all, that would have been handy 17 years ago...

Re this luck issue, there are crudely put three kinds of babies:
1. Babies who sleep well even if their parents practice bad'sleep hygiene'
2. Babies who sleep well (only) if their parents practice good 'sleep hygiene'
3. Babies who sleep badly no matter what their parents do.

If your baby falls into group 1 or 2 you are lucky.
If your baby falls into group 3 you are unlucky.


I honestly haven't the faintest idea at what age my DDs slept through the night.

I'm not convinced any such age exists. Most toddlers and pre school DCs still want cuddles when they are ill, have a nightmare or just want company. How often this happens reduces, but I never found it a great problem.

Yes sleep deprivation with tinies is really tough, but a cuddle, a breast feed and a fall asleep hugging a six month old who co-sleeps perfectly motionless and happily goes back to her own bed when your arm goes dead is no great problem.

DD1 didn't co-sleep, she was a diabolical fidget, but she two was pretty easy to get back to sleep in her own cot.

Sleeping through was never a big deal. Sleeping between 5-8 am was!

I'm a night owl, 3am I can be quite nice, 6am I'm NOT!

dietcokeandwine Sun 16-Feb-14 22:15:18

Pitmountainpony - Sleep training does not always involve leaving a baby to cry.

Humphrey you will probably flame me for this but I coslept with my DS3 (my worst sleeper) for periods around the 5m stage and without doubt this made his sleep far far far worse. There is also no way on earth he'd have slept more than 45 minutes when kept in the same room as us during the evening.

I found that when we moved him to his own room he still woke up, a bit, and I went straight away to feed him, but he woke far less than he did when cosleeping, simply because we were not disturbing him.

When cosleeping he'd wake 5-8 times a night.

When in his own room he'd wake say 2-3 times a night, which IMO would be totally normal for a 5mo.

Obviously everyone is different but I preferred getting up those 2-3 times a night, and sitting on a chair in his room to do a feed, because I slept better in between said feeds. When cosleeping I never slept properly, and used to wake feeling like death warmed up, but I fully accept that that's just me, and that others sleep very well with their babies beside them.

Difficult I know because of the SIDS advice, but if you are asking for advice (that doesn't involve CIO) I'd say put him in his own room. I can't advise on reflux though as mine never had it, and in that I will absolutely agree that I was 100% lucky. Reflux must be a living hell for you and LO and I'm really sorry you and DS are having to cope with it.

BeeInYourBonnet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:15:34

Oh no Cote you must NEVER reveal on MN that you have left your baby to cry for ANY reason!

I once received my worst ever slating when I mentioned I'd left my 3mo to cry for a few minutes whilst I cleared up my 2.5yo who had wet herself. Apparently I should have left my DD to cry, and the wee seep into the carpet, whilst I put DS in a sling. Evil mother - putting a CARPET before her poor BABY!

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 22:15:44

He won't have a dummy <gutted>
He is breastfed, so no water
He is in the room with me for naps and sleeping till six months and sleeps better through noise.
Will wait till six months due to multiple allergies in the family
He goes to sleep fine but doesn't stay that way..

honestly MamaPain, it is so nice of you to bother

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 22:18:14

dietcoke, no flaming but I know it wouldn't work... he would just be awake and screaming. I am not a natural co sleeper, I really would rather not do it.

I am just trying to make the point that I am not responsible for the waking, I and everyone else with a wakeful baby, wants them to sleep.

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 22:18:21

Great....if so little crying out was involved when you sleep trained. But that is not the case for some kids that are left to cry for much longer.
I disagree with it and actually there is evidence that it is not good for the developing be flooded with stress hormones because they want to be comforted. We know very little about the brain so our understanding is developing but the stuff I read by people that do know about the brain and how stress hormones affect it, well you will not find them advocating leaving children to cry for long periods. Because those hormones affect the brain. Who knows how that can manifest I later life. Personally I would rather be a bit more knackered than you are anyway for a few years.....clearly when children are older you can speak to them and explain so it is not as stressful on the brain, but a baby that is crying and wanting comfort that does not come, that is a stressful situation because they are learning that their needs are not as important as mummy and daddy having grown up time. How can a small child possibly understand that?

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:18:46

Oh and Humphrey.

At 5 months, honestly I don't think you need to be trying anything else. DD2 slept in the carseat a few nights. She was never diagnosed with reflux or anything, but she was a vomity baby and went through a period where she hated sleeping flat. We got her a vibrating bouncy chair which seemed to help.

During the day she was basically lying on me all the time. I demand fed. At night she went into the moses basket. Every night. Nights where she was bad with wind/vomity I put her in the bouncy chair or carseat and I dozed, with the bedside lamp on. I can't sleep with lights on so it kept me alert enough to wake of she needed me.

Like I said upthread, it wasn't until nearly 7 months that she slept through in her own room. But by then the vomiting had stopped. I would imagine that a reflux baby would need to be kept with you for much longer and I wouldn't expect him to be sleeping through.

MamaPain Sun 16-Feb-14 22:19:24

I must get faster at posting. Sirzy and Fadbook, that's interesting as for us sleeping through is the norm. Although not all the adults in our house at the moment are family (joys of having adult children).

Perhaps and overall attitude towards sleep as a family plays a part? I don't have any evidence to support that, am just musing. I suppose my DC from a very young age would be aware that waking in the night, getting up or whatever is just not on in this house so I expect if they did wake up for silly reasons would probably have gone back to sleep quite quickly.

That's not to say I haven't had my fair share of wakings!

FadBook Sun 16-Feb-14 22:19:32

Humphrey - have you read "no cry sleep solution" by Elizabeth Pantley? Kind of a tool box of different things you can try.

Locketjuice Sun 16-Feb-14 22:20:00

I co-sleep with my 2yr old.. My 6 month old sleeps in her cot... They are mini people who prefer different things I'm not soft.. Just a mum who wants sleep.. And co sleeping is the only way I will get it hmm

And people seem to think it's entorely normal for a 8 month old baby to wake repeatedly through the night.

It is normal - Evidence based research

CoteDAzur Sun 16-Feb-14 22:21:10

Bee grin

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:23:30


What is a long period of crying though?

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 22:23:33

They cannot understand but they do come to learn that when they communicate a need it will be ignored when it is not convenient for its carers. I just do not think that is an optimum situation for a child. I realise that people who do do cry it out reject that research but frankly I respect the research and because there are so few conclusions in science of a new frontier like brain research, all you can go on is what research is available, and I am convinced by the research that shows how cortisole ( sp?)
affects brain pathways. Daniel seagal is interesting on this stuff.

HumphreyCobbler Sun 16-Feb-14 22:24:32

I am feeling the support ladies <flowers>
I have that book Fadbook, will dig it out

off to bed now <hollow laugh>

Oh I'm sorry, I thought you must have been on a sleep thread seeing as that is the subject of your OP. I will leave you to slag of the parents of sleepless children in peace.

I co slept with #2 because he would only sleep at night while physically touching me. Now at 12 months he'll come in from side cot for a feed then often roll back into cot to sleep afterwards. He has slowly, gradually been able to sleep with more and more distance between us.

He slept much better as a young baby than my eldest who was in a Moses basket to start, even if he insisted on being nose-to-boob at the time, so I counted myself as lucky.

Of my group at baby group, most babies still woke at 8 months. A few still do at 12m. My eldest only stopped waking most nights at 2.5 years.

dietcokeandwine Sun 16-Feb-14 22:25:38

Humphrey I agree with Panda, I don't think you can do anything else tbh. 5m is still pretty little and if you have allergies and reflux in the mix these are bound to have an effect. When you posted originally I assumed your DS was much much older than 5m.

CoteDAzur Sun 16-Feb-14 22:25:59

If "normal" is what commonly happens, then no, it's not really normal for an 8mo to wake & feed in the night. That is because many parents take steps to hurry babies to sleep through the night rather than wait for them to take their sweet time doing it.

Pitmountainpony Sun 16-Feb-14 22:27:18

I think crying for a few minutes is very different from crying for long chunks. I have friends who let them cry for half an hour and longer. I am unable to do this. Of course sleep training with no crying is different and great if you can do that...of course we all want more sleep...I just think that our needs come second unless we are in changer of getting ill and then other strategies have to be found.

FadBook Sun 16-Feb-14 22:28:16

Mama - my dp is entirely different to me. He needs his 8 hour plus a night or turns into a monster grin

Dd knew from very early on, dark time is sleepy time day time is play time. We had a routine (bath, massage, stories etc), dd would go down like a dream,sleep 5 hours but wake (around 12 midnight), and then wake every 2-3 hours, sometimes less. We did everything we could, bar CIO / CC as that isn't for us personally. But at the same time we had a very relaxed attitude to her sleep.

Her long sleep was always from bed time till midnight and I could never change that. For some, that's a dream; it was never an issue to me - I would look after myself and would catch a nap some days; or hand dd over to MIL for an hour etc. We got a sleep through (7-6am) at 19 months when we took the side off the cot. Could it have been that, god knows!

Cakesnbeer Sun 16-Feb-14 22:30:07

Leggyblonde has it entirely correctsmile

I couldn't give a fig about sleep, encourage no sleep hygiene, bf for every squeak, co sleep forever, don't settle them upstairs until past one, bf to sleep and for every waking.

Am very rarely tired and when I am it is usually hangover related so can't blame the kids. My four all slept differently and grew into their sleep needs. One slept through early and easily one very late, both sleep fine as big kids.

My very good friend implements good sleep hygiene and it worked for 4/5, number five would have been her only had she been born as number one. She woke more remorselessly than any of mine, sleep hygiene didn't make much difference and any improvements were alwYs short lived.

I find sleep in the real world much less controversial doubtless my friend thinks me a loon for feeding toddlers back yo sleep or getting them up if they wake, or having no bed time routine whilst I couldn't do it her way. Can't say as it upsets either of us.

MamaPain Sun 16-Feb-14 22:30:40

Humphrey- I must confess I didn't do that much breastfeeding because it was just something I HATED, the thing is with DC3 my reflux ridden baby, I found that giving warm water really helped and that combined with a dummy is how I achieved sleep. It may be different as your baby is breastfed.

I think if I was you, with your limitations I would try to establish more of a routine feeding schedule. Consider something that can make a small amount of noise while he sleeps during the night, consider putting him in a crib/basket that you can reach him in and sleep with a hand on him and gently moving away from him over a week or so. I'd persevere with a dummy, maybe when you're out so DH has to do it.

Its easy for me to say what I would be doing but I didn't have the same rules as you. I had to share a room with my first 3 DC until DC3 was 11 months because we couldn't afford more space. That is probably what lead to be being totally persistent and determined with sleep. I

haveyourselfashandy Sun 16-Feb-14 22:31:36

Both of mine have slept through from 3 months ish.I feel like the LUCKIEST MUM IN THE WORLD.It's unusual amongst people I know.I don't know anyone in rl who co-sleeps every night though.It seems to be a last resort!People ask me how I did it and I don't know how to reply because I'm sure most of us do the same thing.With both dc's I did story then bath at 7.30pm,bottle/supper then quick kiss and cuddle then bed.I've always been able to put them down awake and leave them to drift off no problem.This isn't me boasting by the way I'm just stating I don't think its anything I've done.They have both napped during the day,my eldest only stopped when he started reception and I think my dd will do the same.I am very very lucky.

Actually I think a lot of people in RL exaggerate their LO's sleeping well. They're not lying, they genuinely believe they have a DC who sleeps through.

But when you actually discuss the previous week, month, whatever, you find out the DC has woken up a lot of nights.

Because the parent is able to justify the wakings due to being unwell, teething, being cold, being hot or any other number of reasons, they just somehow seem not to count it as 'not sleeping through the night'.

I even remember one mother of a younger child telling me how well her DC was doing sleeping through the night and how she only woke to feed! She genuinely couldn't see the contradiction in what she was saying.

KonkeyDong Sun 16-Feb-14 22:31:59

Is regular waking during the night very common in adults?

In this house, yes.

I have always woken twice in the night to use the loo, DH rarely wakes. My sister and mum are the same. DD takes after me, shes 9 months old and sporadically will do 6hours in a row. I'm calling that a success.

Maybe I am a shit parent for not working as hard as I can to get her to sleep hmm - but at stupid O'clock in the morning if getting her back to sleep means getting in bed with us, she can get in.

Not many people will admit to cosleeping, I always do.

For us it works - superking bed, no covers or blankets for me, a bed rail and some thermals. It's not forever, and this too shall pass.

arethereanyleftatall Sun 16-Feb-14 22:32:52

Pit - you mentioned before that negative affects of cio manifests in later life. Do you know when and how please? (genuinely interested!)

haveyourselfashandy Sun 16-Feb-14 22:33:31

I'm still shattered all the time too,I really don't know how I would have coped if they had been bad sleepers.I read some threads on here and I could cry for those parents whose dc only sleep an hour at a time.I don't know how they do it.

PandaFeet Sun 16-Feb-14 22:33:32

Oh I'm sorry, I thought you must have been on a sleep thread seeing as that is the subject of your OP. I will leave you to slag of the parents of sleepless children in peace.

I'm not the OP of this thread.


I have left mine to cry at night, but never longer than 5 minutes and even that was painful for me and had me pacing. Emotionally I was dying to go and lift them, comfort them, sit up all night with them. But I am a horrible person when I am tired and ultimately it would have been worse for us all to have to live with me on no sleep. So they were left to cry.

They were left to grizzle for longer than that though. Because to me there is a difference. And it certainly seems as though they used the grizzling as part of their self soothing. My 5 year old still talks to herself or sings before going over to sleep.

IMO there's a difference between a moany cry and a distressed needing comfort cry.

Dwerf Sun 16-Feb-14 22:33:43

Dd2 was a terrible sleeper (and taught dd3 well). Over the course of five years I tried co-sleeping (she bounced around the bed for hours), leaving her to cry (except she wasn't crying, just bouncing), returning her to bed, the entire winding down bath-story-bed thing, no naps in the afternoons, encouraging her to have naps in the afternoons... eventually she just grew out of it. She just seemed to need very little sleep, she wasn't tired until late, then would wake a few hours later for some more up-time. And it wasn't like she was sleeping in late in the mornings, because I had a school run to do. I think the only thing I didn't try was drugs, and I was sorely tempted. I don't even remember most of her early years, it's all a haze of sleep-deprived fug.

Thankfully she' 12 now, and she (and dd3) are down and out for the count by 9:30.

FadBook Sun 16-Feb-14 22:35:48

arethereanyleftatall this link sites several studies and methodology on CIO. It's an interesting read

CraftyBuddhist Sun 16-Feb-14 22:40:05

I'm feeling cheeky so here goes. I also have a non sleeping one year old baby. We cosleep.

I made this choice -to cosleep- from birth this time til necessary. Reason? My non sleeping PFB - I attracted no end of criticism. I didn't cosleep much, tried all manner of things. And exhausted myself. Never in my life had I felt so exhausted. This time? I'm perky as hell. I've accepted it. Some babies sleep long stretches. Some don't. They will when they are ready. Like walking. Like teeth cutting. Like talking.

I occasionally combat criticism of - the horror - having a freak child who doesn't sleep through ever at a year with the comment 'well my children must be very bright, their brains are wired up and they struggle to sleep with all this amazing development going on. Perhaps the best sleepers are simply dimwits'. Because, you know, many babies simply do not sleep through till well into their second year. Parents who accept this night be happier not fighting it.

anothernumberone Sun 16-Feb-14 22:40:38

Highlander what were you thinking introducing actual research what has that ever had to do with a good barney on Mumsnet where we all know that the evidence is down to between 1 and 6 children or even on occasion the children you have not had yet. You are not playing by the rules angry.

arethereanyleftatall Sun 16-Feb-14 22:42:22

Thanks fad. I think I'm ok then as I never left to cio as long as they refer to in the article. Phew.
Interestingly, I was thinking about this the other day when the girls were.playing dollies. I asked them how they remembered going to sleep themselves when they were babies. Both answered that I cuddled them to sleep.

dietcokeandwine Sun 16-Feb-14 22:44:10

The cosleeping thing does depend, though, on whether you yourself sleep well. I have no problems with confessing that I did it, I just don't like it!

I have 3 DC, I have coslept with all of them for short periods of time as younger babies. I really don't sleep well when I cosleep, so it wasn't really much of an advantage, just a survival method on the really bad nights. So there was far more impetus on me to try and get them to sleep in their own beds. If I coslept, I'd sleep so rigidly and awkwardly that I'd wake feeling about a hundred and five. Aching to buggery and with the most splitting headache. But if baby was in their cot, cried for a feed and I got up to feed them, I'd be back in bed within 10 minutes and I would sleep really well between feeds, and wake feeling (vaguely) human.

Personally, I'd rather get up 3 times in the night (as I did for months on end with DS3) and walk across the landing to feed him in his room, then go back to a nice quiet comfy bed without him in it, than suffer the physical discomfort of trying to cosleep.

But that's just me. I am just not one of life's natural cosleepers, I cheerfully acknowledge that not everyone feels like that.

anothernumberone Sun 16-Feb-14 22:48:00

dietcoke when I co slept the baby did sleep in their own space because I am a bit like you describe. I had 3 sides of a cot beside me in the bed in the early day and the baby was on a blanket when he looked for a feed I moved him and the blanket over to me and if I woke up again I moved him back on the blanket so he sayed the same temperature. I doubt I could have co slept in the same bed all night. I need elbow room.

YarnyStasher Sun 16-Feb-14 22:52:55

I agree, op.

DS slept through at 7 months. DD is just 6mo and has been sleeping until 5 or 6am for a week.

I'm not 'lucky'. Both woke 1-4 (or more) times a night until we night-weaned and did controlled crying. Not many on MN do that... Or not many that frequent the sleep threads. But I know a few in real life who have done cry it out.

Highlander what were you thinking introducing actual research what has that ever had to do with a good barney on Mumsnet where we all know that the evidence is down to between 1 and 6 children or even on occasion the children you have not had yet. You are not playing by the rules angry

Haha, erm sorry anothernumberone I thought it was more valid than my research base of one toddler who is 2 next month, who has slept more than 6 hours straight about 10 times in her life.

She always wakes at least once.

ShadowFall Sun 16-Feb-14 22:57:12

Both of my DS's started to sleep through most nights between 3 - 4 months. This wasn't down to any deliberate attempt at sleep training, they just did it by themselves. DH is a very good sleeper, so maybe they've inherited that from him.

DS1 (2.5yrs) has backslid a bit and now wakes more frequently - this is generally because he kicks his covers off and then gets cold. He's now too big for gro-bags.

However, I rarely talk about their sleeping, because I've come across a number of parents in RL with wakeful children who've reacted very very badly if I mentioned that I got a good night's sleep because my DC slept through. Even if I've mentioned this as a response to a direct "How did your DS sleep last night?" type question. There's a fair amount of competitive tiredness going on amongst the parents I know.

I don't tend to post much time on threads about sleeping - partly for the same reasons as in RL, and also because I don't feel that I need advice about sleep.

BlueFrenchHorn Sun 16-Feb-14 22:59:18

The reason you don't hear about ppl co sleeping IRL is because alot of ppl lie about their babies sleeping behaviour.

cogitosum Sun 16-Feb-14 23:14:55

Has anyone got any advice then? Ds is nearly 7 months and I consider a night when he does 5 hours + a good night. Also after one waking he'll wake every hour or so.

He self settles at night and for naps but wakes up and screams if he's on his own (if we're there he doesn't cry). He also needs settling at least once and needs a feed (bf) after about 5 hours. He sleeps in the cot with side down next to our bed as it's the only way we get any sleep.

He is bf on demand but has actually been in a routine of feeds and naps during the day for months. He also now has solids and has 3 meals a day plus snacks (blw but really taken to it and eats loads)

katese11 Sun 16-Feb-14 23:20:30

Dd2 was a terrible sleeper (and taught dd3 well). Over the course of five years I tried co-sleeping (she bounced around the bed for hours), leaving her to cry (except she wasn't crying, just bouncing), returning her to bed, the entire winding down bath-story-bed thing, no naps in the afternoons, encouraging her to have naps in the afternoons... eventually she just grew out of it. She just seemed to need very little sleep, she wasn't tired until late, then would wake a few hours later for some more up-time. And it wasn't like she was sleeping in late in the mornings, because I had a school run to do

Oh my this sounds like my dc2. She just doesn't seem to think she needs much sleep. She's 21mo now...hope she'll grow out of it before she's 12!

WestieMamma Sun 16-Feb-14 23:26:00

DS is 10 months old and wakes at least twice a night. Sometimes he goes back down very quickly, other times nothing will get him back to sleep. Last night DH ended up walking the streets at 4.00am with DS in his pushchair to try and get him to sleep. He eventually fell asleep for an hour. sad

Thanks to this thread I now know it's because we don't work hard enough at it. sad

He's been up 3 times already tonight. sad

anothernumberone Sun 16-Feb-14 23:27:23

Haha, erm sorry anothernumberone I thought it was more valid than my research base of one toddler who is 2 next month, who has slept more than 6 hours straight about 10 times in her life

You have one toddler such you can extrapolate that out to the teenage years at least. smile

GranolaMam Sun 16-Feb-14 23:32:01

WestieMamma - you sound like you're working very hard. Hang on in there…it does get easier!

MrRected Sun 16-Feb-14 23:33:54

Totally agree with you OP.

MN is mostly amazing but I do sometimes wonder who are the children and who are the parents.

alarkthatcouldpray Sun 16-Feb-14 23:34:22

Re-read my last post Westie - you are not alone. Don't despair. It will pass. Mine got the sleeping through the night thing around 14-15 months. Nothing I did or didn't do made a difference. DD2 was a dreadful sleeper but things just fell into place eventually. She was wide awake from 3am til 5am until she was about 10 months old. It was a nightmare especially as DD1 then got up at 6am.

They both sleep 12 hrs consistently now - I really never thought I would be able to write that.

I breastfed easily and had easy deliveries with minimal pain relief. I think luck played a major role in both these scenarios. Rubbing people's faces in it when their baby won't 'play ball' is pretty shoddy. Especially when this particular 'deficit' leaves you exhausted, emotionally vulnerable and at times depressed and desperate.

Dwerf Sun 16-Feb-14 23:37:08

Katese she was in reception when she started reliably sleeping through, I guess a full day at school knackered her out. dd3 was sleeping through at nursery. I mean they weren't going to bed at 7pm or anything, but they weren't waking at 1 or 2am either.

Last year she came home from a school trip and announced "I need my bed" and I crowed with delight. Now she will happily slope off to bed early even! Hang in there, it gets better.

My 2 year old granddaughter isn't sleeping through reliably either.

widdle Mon 17-Feb-14 01:13:39

To imply that people with babies who don't sleep through aren't doing anything (noone on mn seems to want their baby to sleep through) is being a bit naive.

I have sleep trained DS in that he goes to sleep on his own (usins Elizabeth Pantley not CIO) and he sleeps through sometimes but no - definitely not the majority of time. He is 8 months old and I just think that there is so much going on at that age that they do find it hard to sleep. That is where the luck comes in - even with gentle sleep training some babies will just not sleep through. Whether its teething, illness or trying out new skills something always seems to mess around with his sleep.

knowing that this is common in rl (even if others have great sleeping babies) makes the pain that much easier to bear!

widdle Mon 17-Feb-14 01:21:14

Hi Humphrey Cobbler - we did gentle sleep training after having established a really good night time routine. It used to be bath feed until the baby was asleep then into bed. We switched it round so that we did feed, bath then I would take DS to the bedroom and sing (blowin in the wind is favourite - can't stand lullabies - haha). In the beginning there was a fair bit of crying but I stayed in the room with him. After about a week no crying - sometimes he talks for a bit sometimes out like a light. I always stay in the room with him.

saying all that though he still doesnt actually sleep through the night so maybe my advice is bollocks smile

MoominsYonisAreScary Mon 17-Feb-14 01:35:14

ds1,2 &3 didnt sleep through until 2ish

ds4 slwpt through from about 8 weeks and is now very hit and miss.

it really does depend on the dc.

my friends first 3 slept through from early on, her 4th is up ever 1.5 hours even now at 8 months

im sure if youd asked her after the first 3, she qould have put it down to parenting and good routine. it obviously wasnt though!

LuisCarol Mon 17-Feb-14 02:20:25

judgey judgey judgey judgey, ahahahahaahaahh

rabbitlady Mon 17-Feb-14 02:58:06

i co-slept, thirty years ago, and dd and her dh co-sleep with their dd. because it works. and because its lovely.

ok then, don't snuggle in with your babies. don't breastfeed. don't be happy. mostly i don't care.

but i'd rather my dgd lived in a world full of people whose parents treated them the way they'd want to be treated.

puntasticusername Mon 17-Feb-14 06:47:07


It never fails to amaze me that people feel completely comfortable criticising sleep training on the basis of very little knowledge about it. It does NOT have to involve crying. And it most certainly is NOT about ignoring babies' needs for the convenience of caregivers hmm

To return to the dreaded comparison with teaching kids manners - I spent some time yesterday with a dear friend who is being driven up the wall by her daughter's naughty behaviour. She spent the vast majority of our meeting desperately trying to manage and improve it. She had no luck (ha!), however, as unfortunately she was not practising many of the correct techniques required to keep a lively six year old girl in tow (eg praise and reinforcement of positive behaviour; establishment of appropriate boundaries; ignoring poor behaviour as far as possible; giving her suitable outlets for her vast energy; establishing sanctions for really unacceptable behaviour, and then following through with these; refraining from criticising her in front of others ("and THIS is why she's an only child!" angry).

I would never in a million years say that she's not trying to improve her daughter's behaviour, because she does nothing but. However, due to a lack of skill in her part, she's simply not doing it that well unfortunately. My kid behaves much better, I think largely because his parents have much better parenting skills. Luck undoubtedly plays some part, by determining the temperament your child is born with, but I believe that far more of it is down to how you parent your children.

plummyjam Mon 17-Feb-14 07:07:56

I think the advice you get on the sleep boards is skewed because most of the posters replying there have babies with sleep problems. It's more like a support group.

I frequented that board a lot as my DD was a crap sleeper - we were BFing and co-sleeping but it had to finish as I was going back to work. I eventually took some RL advice from friends and family and did controlled crying which worked really well. Now she sleeps through in her cot (mostly).

Now I don't go on the sleep board but if I did I'd recommend CC for older babies. However a lot of the threads there start off by the OP saying they won't consider CC which is fair enough but does really limit the sort of advice that's given out.

Fakebook Mon 17-Feb-14 07:28:17

I've luckily had 3 brilliant sleepers. My dd2 was born in November and will sleep 5-6 hours at a stretch through the night. But none of the older 2 slept through at 8 months and neither will this baby. That is just unrealistic. They've just literally started weaning at that age, how can they go 8-12 hours without a milk feed? confused. Tbh, I've never met anyone in RL with a baby that sleeps through at that age.

HungryHorace Mon 17-Feb-14 07:32:04

DD - almost 8 months - hasn't been the world's best sleeper.

It's only in the last month or so that we've had stints of 6+ hours (aside from a one off 7 hours just after she went into her own room at 4.5 months). On Sat night just gone, we got 9.5 hours. (She was still noisy in her sleep, waking us though!)

We haven't done any sleep training at all. She is able to self settle, and seems to do this better at night than during the day when she fights it more.

She's been mostly asleep since about 6.30 last night, waking for food at about 9.20 and 5.20. Normally we get about 11 hours in total between 7.30pm - 8.30am.

We are very baby led with feeding and sleep, letting her take her time to get her own pattern. I never thought I would be like this, but it's not too bad.

About the same time as she started to sleep longer she adjusted her feeds to every 4 or so hours, so some timing thing has maybe clicked somewhere? I've no idea, but I have every sympathy for people whose babies sleep badly.

HungryHorace Mon 17-Feb-14 07:34:33

Oh, apparently sleeping through is technically 6 hours, not all night. So many babies sleep through, even if it's not what people think of as sleeping through!

merrymouse Mon 17-Feb-14 07:48:23

I don't think it's as simple as believing that the vast majority of 8 month olds can sleep through the night (whatever that means to you).

For most people the reality is that once they get past one child it is quite normal to have some kind of combination of one child being on the verge of dropping a nap and not wanting to sleep till 11pm, one child waking at 5 every morning, one child suffering from night terrors, one child waking up to want to go to the loo, one child teething, one child having a cold, etc. etc. etc.

And some children, like some adults are just awful sleepers.

I wouldn't criticise anybody for using CC to ensure that they can earn a living/operate heavy machinery/smile occasionally during the day.

However, sometimes the line of least resistance, musical beds, also works. You only get a few years where you get to snuggle in with a small child smelling of sleep.

MichaelFinnigan Mon 17-Feb-14 07:53:47

Surely it's not one thing or another, always? Mine slept a good 10 hours from very early on, with no effort whatsoever from me. But sometimes they didn't, when i'd either feed them or take them into my bed, sometimes not, it depended on the specific situation. Sometimes my 'good sleepers' would have a cold or a growth spurt or be teething, at which point they stopped sleeping through. Once it was over they went beck to it

It's not some definitive thing that's static and un changing. So sometimes they 'slept through' sometimes they were 'bad sleepers' sometimes I 'co/slept'. I'm sure lots of is do a bit of each

differentnameforthis Mon 17-Feb-14 10:05:10

I don't co sleep.

Seff Mon 17-Feb-14 10:16:12

With the "5-6 hour" rule, DD first slept through at 4 days old. For about 3 days.

She's 3 now, sometimes she wakes in the night, sometimes she doesn't. Sometimes she can roll over and go straight back to sleep, other times she can't. I was the same before I was pregnant, as is DH. Sometimes we wake to use the toilet, sometimes for a drink.

Yes, some babies will not disturb their parents at night from a fairly young age, but when it's talked about as 'normal' and new mums are told that all babies are capable of sleeping all night at 4 months old (as I was, by a HV) it can make them feel like they aren't doing a good enough job. Luckily, I knew enough people who had babies and toddlers that didn't sleep through, and knew that was also on the big scale of normal-ness, but other mums in our group genuinely worried about the fact that their tiny 4 month old was waking in the night.

anothernumberone Mon 17-Feb-14 10:18:52

I was thinking about this thread last night in the middle of the night when one of our 2 amazing sleep through the night babies was up again aged 5 having growing pains. She has them probably at least once or twice a month. When she was a teeny baby even bf in the very early weeks she slept really well. I used to feed a dream feed and while she would not sleep immediately she would not wake again for maybe 5 hours once she did. The other great sleeper from about 3 years on woke more than once a week with tummy pains for 2 years which after years of investigation turned out to be intolerance to cows milk. She would be up for hours with them in crippling pain. Both slept 'through' from 2 ish months with absolutely no prompting from us. The other thing about the older ones was as you would expect with ff babies they were sick a hell of a lot more than their bf brother who in 2.5 years (bf still) has never been sick enough to consider a doctor. These meant nights pacing the floor with sick children. It just made me realise that it is the whole picture you need to compare not just the early sleepers.

NewtRipley Mon 17-Feb-14 10:21:20

I have older children, and I did the whole She Who Must Not Be Named routine, albeit with a massive pinch of salt.

It did not, and still does not seem remotely controversial to me. To me, it seems guidance at how to allow your baby to do what it wanted to do naturally.

Was v surprised when I came on here years later how there was no expectation from some people at the ability of babies to sleep.

Co-sleeping seemed to me something we all do at some point to get through the hard times, not a philosophy for life

I also agree with Teacups post on page 1

NewtRipley Mon 17-Feb-14 10:26:50

Oh and I don't know how many times I've had to point out that Controlled Crying and Crying it Out are different things

lljkk Mon 17-Feb-14 10:33:01

I slept thru from 6 weeks old (rice in the bottle helped).
I don't sleep-thru now. I haven't for many yrs.
I'm not sure I'd expect a baby to master the sleeping-thru skill; not sure why that would be "normal".
Friend was proud of how her babies slept thru from 3-4 months (controlled crying & solids seemed to help). She mentioned twinges of guilt when her 6m old baby awoke & stayed quite hysterical for a while due to November fireworks. But she didn't want to go in & break the routine, iyswim.

I know she did what she had to, to keep sane, but I couldn't have done the same.

Isn't it great we're not all the same?

SooticaTheWitchesCat Mon 17-Feb-14 10:37:37

Neither of my girls slept through the night as babies. DD1 woke through the night loads of times until she was 2. DD2 wasn't so bad but even now she is 7 she still wakes up every night at least once.

I still have both girls in my bed at night.

I'm not sure why mine never slept but we all get through these issues in our own way and co-sleeping was the best option for us. Both me and DH are happy to have the girls with us and we all slepp fine together smile

dietcokeandwine Mon 17-Feb-14 10:39:53

anothernumber I was also thinking about this thread in the wee small hours (up trying to comfort 12mo DS3, who has tonsillitis for the third time in his little life sad). Of course you need to consider the whole picture. My Ds2 was a brilliant sleeper as a baby, but now at 4yo is very prone to night terrors due to an overactive imagination, bless him. DS1 never did the night terrors but had chronic separation anxiety at 1yo, which DS2 never did.

Different children, different issues. But I still maintain that parents can influence how well their babies sleep. Not guarantee them sleeping through. But influence it. In the same way that they can influence how well they eat, even if a lot is also dependent on the nature of that child.

The thing is, there is a world of difference in what babies will do, at different ages, and of course it is great that posters come on to reassure parents that not all babies sleep through at certain ages etc etc. Where it becomes unhelpful, IMO, is say when a parent posts in desperation because their 8mo is waking hourly through the night and has to breastfeed back to sleep, asking for tips on how to help, and is told over and over 'oh that's normal, just co sleep!'. And when it is implied that any sleep training is wrong, and cruel, etc etc. I always feel so sorry for the poor posters in these scenarios but know there is no point trying to post any alternative suggestions because the 'oh it's normal' crew will shoot you down in flames and say that all sleep training is evil.

And in that scenario - the thing is that an 8mo who can generally settle themselves to sleep, can also resettle themselves when they stir in the night, but perhaps wakes a couple of times in the night for a feed = absolutely normal and will sleep through when good and ready to drop those feeds.

An 8mo who can only fall asleep with a breast/dummy in their mouth, or when rocked/cuddled to sleep, who then wakes up hourly through the night = would probably sleep better if parents tried some different techniques. Might not sleep through, sure. But would almost certainly wake less.

Not, however, according to the MN 'it's all luck' crew.

PuddingAndHotMilk Mon 17-Feb-14 10:39:59

YABU. I think MN and RL are the same in this regard. In fact ppl I know in RL seem to have more night wakings. It is NOT normal for an 8mo to sleep through the night. Damn I'm 40 and I wake up for a drink or fancying a cuddle most nights wink

Seff Mon 17-Feb-14 10:40:57

All that matters is you do what works for you, your baby and your family.

What I object to is mums being pressured into doing something they don't feel comfortable with (whether that's CC or co sleeping or anything else) because people say that their baby is not normal.

dietcoke - just because you raise that scenario ...

there's a friend of mine on here who had an 8mo just like that. She now has a 2 year old just like that. They have tried EVERYTHING. Including CC. There really are some babies who are extreme-athletes of sleep-problems who just won't respond to parental adjustments.

This child may go one to be an insomiac adult, or he may suddenly sleep really well in a year or two. I was a terrible sleeper until I was 3 (according to my mother!).

All sleep patterns exist on a continuum of malleability.

dietcokeandwine Mon 17-Feb-14 10:56:07

I'm sure that's true, Leggy.

In the same way that there will always be 'extreme' fussy eaters no matter what their poor parents do (I suspect my Aspie DS1 will end up being one sad).

But whilst there will always be extreme examples, for many children - I'd even go so far as to say the majority of children - the techniques will help, even if only a bit.

My 11 yo (yes 11) still doesn't sleep through, it's like musical beds in our house. it's not for the want of trying on both parts, we have tried everything and nothing works. We can have discussions, set plans in motion (obv when he was little try all the bath, bottle bed etc etc) but in the middle of the night it all goes tits up!

He will grow out of it one day I'm sure so I try not to let it stress me out too much.

CoteDAzur Mon 17-Feb-14 11:35:47

For me, "sleeping through the night" is exactly what it sounds like - not waking up from when they fall asleep to when it is the morning.

That is what DD did at 4 months and DS at 5 months, after several days of sleep training. This is what their pediatrician suggested we do, and it was the single best advice I have ever received in my life.

TwoThreeFourSix Mon 17-Feb-14 12:09:30

Well this is damn depressing for a mum of a 2.4 year old who still doesn't sleep through. And its not from lack of trying either - I have tried loads of stuff.

I find it amazing that people can say "my baby slept through from X age"

DS is 2.4 years and I can easily identify at least 8 different sleep patterns he's been through from birth. When he was waking up cos of reflux (which finally stopped aged 18 months), or a sleep regression (which went on for months), or because he was learning to crawl/sit up/walk (I would spend hours watching him roll round our bed whilst asleep - in his cot he hit the sides and woke up all the time), or, or, or...

In fact, I find the lack of sleep easier in a way now (also helped by co-sleeping!) because with hindsight I see all his different needs at different ages and know that I really couldn't do anything to solve them.

With reflux I went to him when he cried because more often than not he'd then throw up everywhere. No way was I going to CC with that going on.

With him moving in his sleep and hitting the padded bars - well, what the hell as I supposed to do about that? (BTW I am a sleepwalker/talker which he seems to have inherited).

I won't go into more detail but I do not think DS' sleeping is my fault/my bad parenting. It's just fucking unlucky and exhausting.

One thing I will say though is that I disagree that the sleep boards don't provide ideas. I have read many threads and seen many different ideas suggested (a huge thread was called "this is what worked for us" and seemed to help a great number of parents).

I won't go into more detail but I do not think DS' sleeping is my fault/my bad parenting. It's just fucking unlucky and exhausting

Totally mum was an insomniac and DH and I both are crap sleepers too, DS never had a chance really. My answer was to buy him a double bed so at least we are comfy now smile

bigkidsdidit Mon 17-Feb-14 12:14:44

I think there are three groups of babies

One - fantastic sleepers from 6 weeks ish, sleep through no matter what the parents do
Two - bad sleepers because they are in bad habits, wih some sleep training will sleep much better
Three - terrible sleepers no matter what the parents do.

Both of mine were in group two. I sleep trained both at 6 months (no crying, gradual retreat) and both slept through after that. I have many, many friends for whom the same has been true.

However, I think some babies really are in group three and are very resistant to sleep. And mothers of those babies are more likely to be here in the sleep boards, so are perhaps over-represented.

purplebaubles Mon 17-Feb-14 12:20:13

My baby has slept through since about 7 weeks, 11pm - 7am, and then from 16 weeks 7-7 (when we dropped the 11pm feed)

The only time she doesn't, is if she's poorly or teething (to be expected I think!)

Sorry, I don't think it's down to luck - I put a lot of bloody hard work in!

BUT I also don't think it's necessarily a parent's fault if their child doesn't sleep through, and it also doesn't mean that they haven't tried hard too. I'm sure there are plenty of parents out there who have tried everything and for whatever reason, nothing works. However, there are also a lot who accept it though too (the likes of, oh it's normal not to sleep through..really?! Is it?! I don't think so!)

But it does also annoy me when people say, oh you're just lucky.

I certainly wouldn't accept an 11yr old waking me up at night!!!! I'd be allowing him to wake himself up as much as he liked, but god help him if he woke me up too!> Seriously, 11?!

Yes seriously 11!! Easy to say that though when you aren't in that situation.

Seff Mon 17-Feb-14 12:27:09

If most babies were meant to be sleeping through the night that early, why is it such hard work?

purplebaubles Mon 17-Feb-14 12:28:43

I'm sure. But then I remember being a 4 year old myself, (in the days before Gro Clocks grin ) and knowing that I was not allowed to wake mum and dad up before a certain time. I just wouldn't have dared get out of bed, and wake the household up. Fine that I was awake at 6am or whatever, but I knew that I had to stay put in my room and play.

I just can't see why an 11yr old is able and allowed to disrupt your sleep? hmm

MinesAPintOfTea Mon 17-Feb-14 12:33:52

DS has slept through generally from 8 weeks. But considering this as a bonus was essential every time he hit a blasted sleep regression and stopped sleeping for weeks. It meant that I spent time working out what was wrong and going through gradual retreat again until he's back to being put in his cot and left to settle himself to sleep again.

But luck did pay a large part and if that's not on your side I can fully understand not going through anything stricter than gradual retreat with a baby.

Although as a child insomniac by 11 it was certainly clear to me that I was only permitted to read, not wake parents etc if I woke in the night and couldn't settle straight back to sleep.

But I think there is a big difference between not wanting to get in trouble for waking mum and dad and waking up in the night scared. DS is genuinely scared although of what god knows....he doesn't get up but he will wake up and call out.....we have tried ignoring him but he is genuinly frightened and I am not willing to put him through that when I can just nip into his bed and get him to sleep in a few mins.....or I could leave him to call out and get really upset and worried for hours!

I suppose it's a case of how hard we want to be but personally for me having him upset, frightened and just really stressed is not an option. Maybe if he would go back to sleep quickly I would leave him but he doesnt and I need sleep however I get it! He wants to crack it as much as we want him to but in the cold light of day (or dark of night) he just can't help it......he will get there one day though and in the meantime I'm not letting it get us down.

purplebaubles Mon 17-Feb-14 12:42:20

I think if he's got to 11 and still is scared, then yes, you're right, you have to continue to support him. Far too late to be 'cruel to be kind' now sad Although at 11, he should be able now to verbalise what the problem is? But if he's always done this, it's going to be a habit that only age and time will now solve probably.

When my DC1 was, say, 12 months I would have said that I didn't know any babies in RL his age who didn't sleep through (in the colloquial sense of "all night" rather than the technical sense which I believe is "a block of five hours' sleep" or something like that). FWIW he slept through from around 9 months but went through a bad sleeping patch between 18 months and 2 years.

Then at the round of third birthday parties for his nursery friends loads of parents admitted that their children hadn't slept through for ages -- in a couple of cases at least until 2.5 or so. In fact, the majority of the children hadn't been sleeping through at eight months or twelve months. But no one admitted that when it was still going on, or in fact at all until they had a couple of glasses of wine and other people were admitting it too.

So now any time anyone says "In rl I don't know any children beyond 6 months who don't sleep through" I tend to be doubtful. Because there was a time that I would have said that, but I would have been wrong -- it was just that in rl other parents were afraid of being judged.

I also would have said that I didn't know anyone else who coslept, except that now I am up-front and mention it first it turns out that loads of people did (not the majority or anything like it, but a lot of people) either regularly or from time to time. They just don't mention it unless they know they are with like-minded people because they are afraid of being judged. Similarly with natural term bf. Now that I am old and don't really care whether I am judged any more it's amazing how many more people I suddenly know in rl whose children didn't sleep, or who coslept or bf for a couple of years. And all without meeting any new people...

CPtart Mon 17-Feb-14 12:52:59

My DS have both slept through consistantly from about 3 -4 months. They are 8 and 11 now and sleep has never been a problem since. We are very lucky.
Btw, neither has ever slept in our bed, ever. I encouraged reliance on teddies and blankets for comfort.
But each to their own.

Bootoyou2 Mon 17-Feb-14 13:02:20

As a parent of a 2.2 yr old non sleeper this thread is hard to read without getting cross. The implication that the parents of good sleepers have put more effort in / got into a good routine is laughable .....

My Dc falls firmly into group 3! I have always had the same routine, dark, no interaction, breast fed etc etc....if only it were that simple.

What twothreefoursix said rings most true about different problems at different ages. I think in hindsight Dc must have had silent reflux or cows milk intolerance as she used to wake up screaming up to every 45 mins and passing noisy wind. Sometimes she was soothed by breast milk. This made it impossible to do any sort of CC as I was never sure whether she was in pain. Suddenly at 18m she slept flat on her tummy and didn't move for hours wherease she used to thrash around with bottom in air curling her knees up under her.

I tried all gentle methods of sleep control but they rely on you being able to soothe- shush pat etc doesn't work on a screaming hysterical baby.

All teeth are through at 2 yrs- that was one step forward with sleep then back to weeks of disturbed nights......and the colds and illnesses.

And yes also extremely active in cot, getting stuck at each development stage and immediately pulling to stand and scream before even properly asleep.

And severe separation anxiety

And yes at times I have resorted to co sleeping because I was too physically exhausted to go through to the nursery and sitting for hours in nursery chair waiting for sleep only for the screaming to start when I put DC down or tried to leave was hurting my back.

I think she is highly intelligent and now has an over active imagination and nightmares too.....

The smugness and lack of empathy of some posters is unbelievable.

halfwildlingwoman Mon 17-Feb-14 13:02:59

Everybody wants their children to sleep through the night. What kind of crazy person would WANT disturbed sleep every night for 7 years? Who doesn't long for an angelic cherub that goes to sleep at 7.30 pm and wakes up exactly 12 hours later with a smile and a dry nappy? Of course we want our children to sleep.

sadbodyblue Mon 17-Feb-14 13:03:10

all I can add is cc literally saved my sanity. have done it with all of my kids at 7 months onwards and it worked like a magic wand for us.

MinesAPintOfTea Mon 17-Feb-14 13:10:22

Betty in that case you have my sincere sympathies. It takes a week, maybe two of disturbed sleep to bring me to my knees.

exhaustedmummymoo Mon 17-Feb-14 13:11:59

purplebaubles, that's a bit contradictory saying its down to bloody hard work, but acknowledging some parents try everything! By the way what was the 'bloody hard work'. I tried all the techniques known when dd was a baby and then toddler, but nothing worked. It's shite being sleep deprived and yes I did co sleep and no no feelings of guilt, after all how many other animals leave their babies, even crocs sleep with their young!
Dd now 3:6 sleeps through, unless she sleep walks/ has a bad dream.
My ds was fab sleeper till he started teething at about 6 months and has been up and down ever since he's now just over two. I can't help thinking if you have another you may not be so 'lucky' yes I know you resent people using that term. Of course if you really have found the key to vegetating a good night please tell me I'm fed up with sleep deprivation, maybe you could make your millions by writing a book, I'd pay any mount to get a whole 7 nights sleep without being woken up by screaming at 3 am!!!

JassyRadlett Mon 17-Feb-14 13:17:29

I think parents can have some influence over sleep - but not control it. You have to do what you can with the baby you have. If your baby is the sort who will not lie crying in their cot without settling but will instead work themselves into hysterics quickly, then controlled crying may not work. If you have a hungry baby struggling with solids, you may need a more slow and sophisticated approach to dealing with a baby who's genuinely hungry at night.

Also people should recognise that a fuckload of people lie about whether their babies sleep through the night as they think it's a judgement on their baby/their parenting if they have a poor sleeper. smile

I had to try all manner of sleep training methods before I hit on one that worked for DS after he went from a good sleeper to a shit one at around 7 months. I could have lost a lot of time and spent a lot of energy sticking with things that were pointless because someone else had said it was infallible and I must do it, my kid was able to sleep through the night. He simply wasn't for a range of perfectly valid reasons.

A pick-and-mix of techniques worked in the end but for me I had to decide I cared most about: what is best for him and for me, and what does the evidence say (eg on newborns sleeping solo, how many babies still need feeds at night, recommended ages for different training approaches.

For me it's about having the courage of your convictions that you've done what's right for your situation, and not heeding the rest of the world to be Just Like You.

whatsthatcomingoverthehill Mon 17-Feb-14 13:24:36

I haven't seen people be judgy on MN for co-sleeping but I have seen plenty of judginess about leaving your baby to cry even for a minute, or having them in a different room before 6 months.

And there are things you can do that will affect how they sleep. I have a friend whose DD had a dummy in the night. Every night for nearly a year she would be going in when the dummy fell out and her DD would start crying. This would happen 8-10 times a night. Finally she took the dummy away, and her DD cried for 15 minutes before going to sleep. The next night she slept straight through with no crying.

purplebaubles Mon 17-Feb-14 13:35:23

exhausted I know, I didn't phrase it particularly well!

I guess I agree with the poster who said there are 3 types of babies.

CC is hard, and heartbreaking. I did it. It wasn't easy. My friends who struggle with their babies/toddlers waking in the night freely admit that they just don't have the heart to do it. So to my mind, to some extent, they accept that their child is going to wake?

I think there are some parents (you may be one of these!) who have tried everything and still to no avail. But honestly? I think most people who have sleepless nights, it's because they can't/won't go through sleep training.

You should try a small snack of banana and peanut butter on brown toast by the way about 6pm. Whenever we've missed it, DD has woken up at 3am wink We are actually due no2, and I'll report back and let you know if it were luck (or if I'm actually just hard, with a view of being cruel to be kind in the long run!!)

Chipandspuds Mon 17-Feb-14 13:46:08

I must admit I get quite stressed reading some if the sleep advice on MN. I personally can't function on a few hours sleep and I actually find 10 hours a nighty ideal. I managed with DS when he was little by napping in the daytime when he napped, but he was sleeping through the night for 12 hours by 5 months.

I personally hate co-sleeping, it's uncomfortable for me to get kicked in the back by DS and sleep on the very edge of the bed and DH is a light sleeper and also can't bear co-sleeping.

I think I did controlled crying by accident a few times as it was so obvious DS was tired it was better to make him sleep and be persistent about it than to let him get even more tired.

I don't like the way some people compare CC or CIO to child abuse. As long as the child is well looked after physical & emotionally, I think crying before sleep isn't going to hurt them as much as disturbed sleep patterns over a period of years.

I think we sometimes set impossible ideals these days in regards to parenting and we all feel guilty that we're not doing a good enough job.

TulipOHare Mon 17-Feb-14 14:00:36

I think sleeping all night unaided is a developmental stage, not much different from walking and talking. It would be silly to get het up about a baby not walking by 8 months, or to congratulate yourself for excellent parenting if your baby walks at 10 months, because we get that babies walk when they're ready to do so. I think sleeping is similar and that it is perfectly normal for children to take a few years to reach readiness for this.

I had a bit of a paradigm shift when DD, who was bf / rocked / cuddled to sleep until toddlerhood and who had free access to our bed, chose to decamp to her own bed aged 3, shortly after DS was born. She just did it, and ever since then has slept beautifully.

DS has just started choosing his own bed now, aged 5. It's a gradual process and is entirely his choice - he goes in his bed for a few nights, then comes back to mine, I don't express an opinion either way. Very similar actually to how he stopped bf - he decided he didn't need it any more for a couple of days, then came back to it, then stopped entirely (this was aged 4). I think that if there had been a younger sibling, he'd have decamped sooner, like DD.

I suspect there is a spectrum - some children will be ready and willing to sleep all night unaided by an early age (and I think 8 months is very early), and some will need much longer. Of those who need longer, some can be pushed or encouraged via sleep-training techniques, and some cannot. Personality and emotional needs play a part here.

I think MN presents quite a variety of viewpoints on infant sleeping, and this is a GOOD thing. I, for one, would have appreciated someone to tell me that DD at 6 months was still tiny, did not need to be "sleeping through" and that her need for me was normal, healthy and valid and would remain so for years to come. The prevailing dogma of "babies must sleep through by 6 months and if not here's what you must do to make them!!" is unhelpful if unchallenged, and I'm extremely glad I did not go down any sleep-training route. The DCs are fine and secure and happy, they spent zero time sobbing in cots, I had very little sleep deprivation after the newborn days and we all loved sleeping together. It worked for us.

Megrim Mon 17-Feb-14 14:59:21

I obviously did everything wrong, according to the lore of MN. Didn't breast feed, put DCs straight into a cot or Moses basket at night, moved them to their own room after 6 weeks or so, weaned them at 4 months. Left them to grizzle at night if need be. Gave them both a dummy. Ensured they had a proper bedtime routine. Swaddled them. Never took them into my own bed. Did not encourage chat or lift them on the odd occasion they properly woke up, unless it was a bad dream, in which case they would be lifted and cuddled and reassured. They both slept through reliably from 3 or 4 months old. Of course, it was just luck, wasn't it?


I agree with everything you say re sleeping through being developmental.

Bootoyou2 Mon 17-Feb-14 15:36:08

Megrim you were lucky you didn't have a screaming refluxy baby because your description doesn't sound like you did.

I always get wound up by those who are anti-CC basing their argument on the fact that CC raises cortisol levels.

Well, they're right - it does. But what they're conveniently forgetting to mention is that one of the main causes of high cortisol levels in babies is from the stress of continued sleep deprivation. So over time those babies who have been successfully sleep-trained by CC (and I appreciate it doesn't work for everyone) have much lower cortisol levels than those babies who are knackered from their nights of being awake every 3 hours.

Fine to be against CC, just don't use bad science to back it up!

ShatzePage Mon 17-Feb-14 15:45:06

Yanbu op-I have 2 excellent sleepers but that is because I was extremely strict/anal about routines,naps,dinner times etc. With dc3 I was far more lax due to knackereness and he is still coming into our bed most nights at the age of 3!

Its entirely my own fault as I am just too lazy now to implement a strict regime. All the parents I know-not with standing dcs with medical issues-have children who wake in the night because the parents are too soft too implement any sort of sleep regime.

TwoThreeFourSix Mon 17-Feb-14 15:49:35

I agree with Boo

"grizzle" could never be used to describe DS. He has never grizzled. He is either happy or very distressed.

His sleep is terrible. My only comfort is that aged 2.4 he is a very happy, determined but at the same time easy-going chap in the day. Yes he survives on 9 hours a night, but isn't grumpy the next day.

At night however he is very distressed when left/when he wakes alone. And as he is a light sleeper and we live in a noisy place, well, lots of things to wake him up!

And in the last couple of months we've entered nightmare territory...most nights he wakes screaming and trembling all over.

purplebaubles Mon 17-Feb-14 15:50:53

I did the same as Megrim ...

Sirzy Mon 17-Feb-14 15:57:45

I did the same as Megrim. DS is 4 YEARS now and will occasionally sleep through.

So yes Megrim a lot of it is down to luck.

sillylittleperson Mon 17-Feb-14 16:00:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

formerbabe Mon 17-Feb-14 16:00:59

My kids sleep for 12 hours straight and have done since 6months. I am a rubbish person all round when I don't sleep well. I can't understand people who don't tackle this issue. Its not good for children, couples, family as a whole.

gemdrop84 Mon 17-Feb-14 16:01:36

Well everyone's different and I don't really see what the problem is. Some babies just don't sleep through and it's not for want of trying or effort. DD slept through the night from 5 wks and was a generally chilled out easy baby/toddler. She had 2 hour naps each day until she was 2. Ds has just turned 1 is only just sleeping through, still getting up in the night and napping is sporadic. He's also been a really clingy baby. To get some sleep we have co slept.

Sirzy Mon 17-Feb-14 16:03:52

I can't understand people who don't tackle this issue

Do you really think people with children who don't sleep well sit back and think "ahh they wont sleep lets leave them to it" I am yet to meet anyone who is happy to have night after night of disturbed sleep, or who isn't trying every method they can find to resolve the issue.

sillylittleperson Mon 17-Feb-14 16:05:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

formerbabe Mon 17-Feb-14 16:07:08

My dd was not a good sleeper, so I used sleep training. We now have a bedtime routine and it works well for her. I know mums who post on fb about how little sleep they get like its a badge of honour.

I can't understand people who don't tackle this issue

We've tried it all.....for years......nothing works. We've been strict.....shouted, calm, routined, non routined.....left him to cry.....been in the room but no name it, we've done it.

I'm used to not ever getting a whole nights sleep now and in fact when I am in bed I can't sleep because I am waiting for him to call out. Luckily, I have a fab DH and we take it in turns.

TwirlyCat Mon 17-Feb-14 16:31:54

What I dislike is parents of sleepers congratulating themselves for all their 'hard work'.

What is hard work is reading every sleep book under the sun, try every gentle sleep training method going. Getting no results. Surviving the day on 5 hours broken sleep, just like every sodding day for the past 14 months.

In RL I know plenty of parents of non sleepers, thank god, otherwise posts like this would make me cry.

LaGuardia Mon 17-Feb-14 16:54:21

We've tried it all.....for years......nothing works. We've been strict.....shouted, calm, routined, non routined.....left him to cry.....been in the room but no name it, we've done it.

So no actual system then, BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack?

Both of my DCs slept right through from six weeks and have continued happily ever since. I just do not understand what parents are doing wrong.

Yes but as he is 11 we have had time to do lots............

and bully for you!

Sirzy Mon 17-Feb-14 17:02:58

I just do not understand what parents are doing wrong.

What makes you think they are doing something wrong? What a horrible way of looking at it

WWOOWW Mon 17-Feb-14 17:05:19

I trained like a dog both my kids to sleep through from 6-10 weeks. I do not know anyone who co- sleeps nor do I know many babies who are not sleeping through the night by 8 months.

olympicsrock Mon 17-Feb-14 17:05:47

My 2 year old son is a crap sleeper, on average we get up with him 3 times a night. We are doing well if its a quick "It's nighttime" and tuck him back in.
We've worked really hard with bed time routine, room temperature, nightlight, groclock, naughty corner and star chart buy we still struggle far more than most of my friends.
I find it helpful to know from mums net that we are not alone.

HumphreyCobbler Mon 17-Feb-14 17:06:45

I do not understand how some people think all children are the same and will respond in the same way.

formerbabe Mon 17-Feb-14 17:08:53

One thing I told my ds was, if he does wake up or can't sleep, then that's fine but I expect him to stay in bed as his body will still be resting. It seemed to help him.

IfNotNowThenWhen Mon 17-Feb-14 17:21:42

Nrft, although I bet its kicked off! I agree to some extent Op, in that the culture on here is almost agressively " its Normal" and you shouldn't even want your baby to sleep.
I had a non sleeper, but I was desperate to get him out of my bed, into his cot, and sleeping thru (he did by one). While it certainly wasn't helpful when family members said " most babies" are sleeping thru at six months, I couldn't have handled more than a year of it.
I never had Mn , so at the time, I stopped feeding in the night at around six months, when I started weaning. I think on mn people tend to expect to be doing night feeds way longer than that. I didn't totally feed on demand, I did have a three hourly routine in the day, and tbh, that was the best thing I could have done, because he got a full belly at his last feed, and I think it helped him go thru. Of course, some would think that not feeding 24/7 once they are over the newborn stage newbie is akin to child abuse, so I won't mention the ( very) controlled crying I did at ten months..

tallulah Mon 17-Feb-14 17:29:56

My DC1 slept through from 7 weeks. DC2 was still waking several times a night at 2 1/2 years. We didn't do anything different, they were just different children.

DC3 and DC4 I can't even remember (they are in their 20s). DC5 co-slept from birth and I have no idea how old she was when she slept through. After the first month or so she just helped herself to a BF when she woke, and didn't disturb me at all. She certainly never cried.

NewtRipley Mon 17-Feb-14 18:18:44


Yes, that's what I was getting at. I think there are some people who aren't even aware it's possible to try and get a baby into a routine from early on - judging by some of the advice I've read on here.

Also, Lord knows how I'd have coped if the advice in my day had been to keep the baby in the room with you for 6 months (as it is now)

BrandNewIggi Mon 17-Feb-14 18:33:06

LaGuardia - have been sitting on my first ever biscuit but I think you deserve it hmm What a ridiculous post.

ElleBellyBeeblebrox Mon 17-Feb-14 18:34:24

Well my eight month old is a shit sleeper. So I feel exhausted and emotional quite regularly. It's really helpful to know it's because I'm lazy, not willing to tackle it, and that I'm not trying hard enough.
There's some really irritating smug posters on this thread. I guess you think a strict routine and "trying harder" would have stopped him having such disrupted sleep when he got six teeth through in the space of two weeks?
I can't think of many other aspects of parenting where if people were struggling they'd be told that they're not trying hard enough.
So you're fortunate enough to have a good sleeper, well congratuwellfuckingdone.

NewtRipley Mon 17-Feb-14 19:56:44


No, I understand. Mine all went tits up with teething, colds, etc. It's horrible, and it went on and on until I did CC

MrsNPattz Mon 17-Feb-14 20:16:29

My son is 17 months old and we still cosleep/breast feed/wake in the night - what a lazy parent I must be!

anothernumberone Mon 17-Feb-14 20:58:16

Too the smug posters. I am even better than you because through good breeding I got the best results, sleeping though by 8 weeks with no interventions at all from us.

<shines even smugger than the 'smugs' medal>

then they started waking up when they were older

<scuffs medal a little>

--then came the non sleeper who we love anyway even though he just does not need sleep, but he is so cute>

<throws medal into a pile of rubbish, beside our parenting skills and gazes admiringly at the smugs who got it so right.>

IfNotNowThenWhen Mon 17-Feb-14 20:59:30

But it's not laziness! Whatever you choose to do has to work for you, and, as a lone parent, being totally shattered all the time just didn't work for me. I am an anxious person, and had insomnia when ds was tiny, as in, I found it hard to sleep between feeds, so co sleeping, although I did feed him in bed and fall asleep, could never be a long term solution for me.
If people are genuinely OK with broken nights, and co sleeping for years, then great, I don't care-why would i?!
FWIW, ds is nearly 8, and if he has a bad dream, or is ill, he is in my bed, and that's OK, but for me, the bedtime routine, the bath, the set bedtime and the not feeding in the night (or really interacting when he woke in the night, other than to say "shh-it's sleep time" helped.
I tried cc at six months, and couldnt do it, as I found it too upsetting, but at ten months was totally different; ds knew I was there, and I took the advice of a lovely HV who told me not to go past 10 minutes. He never actually cried as long as that in the end, and I felt like, after a couple of days of doing it, he was relieved to find that he could fall asleep with me not holding him. I was pottering about outside his room saying "shh, go to sleep" a little bit, so not being totally absent, but just "looks, it's night time, and I am not going to pick you up, so go to sleep!"
Sure, some children have real problems with sleeping, and sometimes people can have two that sleep, and one that doesn't, and some of it is luck, but believe me, I had a very wilful and stubborn night owl, and certain methods did help.
He sleeps like a little log now. I could vacuum round him right now, and he wouldn't notice!
My point is, that it's OK to not just accept years of bad sleep, and it's OK to try (and fail sometimes) tried and tested methods to help them learn to sleep.

katese11 Mon 17-Feb-14 20:59:30

Megrim...If you didn't breastfeed then your babies probably did sleep better. Bfed babies tend to sleep more lightly than ff ones. so you can't use your experience of friends babies and extrapolate it to how bf babies sleep...They are just different. Advantages and disadvantages to both but just different things!

katese11 Mon 17-Feb-14 21:02:01

*ff babies not friends babies!

slightlyconfused85 Mon 17-Feb-14 21:05:10

Yanbu. The op didn't say an 8 month old should sleeping through, but perhaps not waking repeatedly which I agree with. And why shouldn't an 8 month old that eats well during the day and is in general good health not be expected to sleep through most nights? I don't know any co sleepers and most of my friends babies were mostly sleeping through at this age. Mumsnet advice is sometimes soft. Also the response to early waking is usually that you are lucky if your child wakes at five if they went to bed at seven or eight. How is this lucky?

I have a great eater and a lousy sleeper. I worked and tried and read and struggled with sleep. Eating was easy because SHE was easy about food.

I don't tell all my friends, relatives and strangers on the internet that I know everything about picky eaters because I know NOTHING about picky eaters. I don't have one. I do know a lot about sleep because of DD who didn't sleep until she was 2. The idea that I didn't want her to sleep... I would have done anything, except CIO, to get her to sleep. She just didn't need that much sleep.

Now, at 3, she is the best sleeper of all my 'baby' friends' kids. All the people who told me to FF, put her in a different room at a few weeks old and CIO have worse sleepers than me. I could be smug and say that my way was magical and it was all my hard work and that I know better than them. I could, but why when next week their kids might sleep and mine might not.

LittleMilla Mon 17-Feb-14 21:25:10

Thanks slightly - that is exactly the sentiment I was trying to get across.

I've received helpful advice on faddy eating, tantrums etc. but bugger all on sleep. Whilst I agree that there's a certain amount of nature vs nurture. The latter does play a part and I've rarely got many helpful pointers.

And my expectations (and those of most of my rl friends) of what babies and children ought to do seem to vary wildly when compared to mn.

I would never accuse anyone with a shit sleeper of being lazy. But I too take offence to people saying I'm lucky if my children do sleep through. Every time ds2 gets derailed by teeth and illness we wait until he's better and DH and I work together to get him sleeping through again.

My original post was genuine. I've come on here to look for any pointers during these stages and simply been met with "he should be allowed to be awake at that age" or "co sleep". Neither of which I'm happy with.

Sirzy Mon 17-Feb-14 21:28:40

But it is PARTLY down to luck that your work works. Others can do the same or more and it won't make a difference. It not hard to see that surely?

LittleMilla Mon 17-Feb-14 21:42:02

My main luck is having a DH who is so strong willed that he is willing to keep on going when I'm ready to crack and feed them!

Reading that back it sounds harsh - it's not. We just agree that until 'x'am he'll go in to settle them.

Of my two children I'd say that ds2 is far more 'textbook' and had he not been so ill he would've slept through without much help much earlier. So I will concede that by nature I've been lucky with him. We've still had plenty of long periods of being awake at stupid o'clock, mind!

Ds1 however is not a natural sleeper.

Martorana Mon 17-Feb-14 21:47:09

Yep- sounds harsh.

CoteDAzur Mon 17-Feb-14 21:50:03

Why is his own father going to comfort a baby "harsh"?

slightlyconfused85 Mon 17-Feb-14 21:51:40

There's a bit of luck involved as to how much sleep a child needs, but I also think that people who can cope with a bit of crying/grizzling/waiting a few mins before feeding will find their children more likely to sleep eventually. Also those who find the time and energy to teach self settling, and encourage sleep in the child's own cot often find things easier in the end. It is certainly not lazy to not do these things as it is exhausting and hard to do so, but those who don't often find crap sleeping goes on well into toddlerhood. I am not being smug, I am lucky that my children need quite a bit of sleep but so do I, so I helped them learn. My children often wake up with teeth pain, colds etc but when this is over we go back to normal routines. I fear that I will have my throat jumped down but the above techniques work whether people like doing them or not, even with an eight month old!

slightlyconfused85 Mon 17-Feb-14 21:55:04

Which bit was harsh? The OPs husband is comforting the baby, but not with milk as he has slept through without it before right? Right approach IMO.

violator Mon 17-Feb-14 22:14:33

Haven't read the whole thread but YANBU.

Look, if you have the kind of days where you CAN be knackered from multiple wakings, co-sleeping with an octopus, then knock yourself out.
If you can't function on snatched minutes of sleep here and there and you find your mental health is suffering, then do something about it.

My friends who followed the 'never ever let your baby whimper' mantra have 4 and 5 year olds up and down half the night and they are knackered, their jobs are suffering, their marriages are suffering and their health is suffering.

Babies rarely magically start sleeping for 10-12 hours without some kind of parental nudge.

I tried the whole cosleeping, BFing to sleep gig for as long as I could before I had a breakdown and ended up in hospital with PND. It had got to the point where I was so fucking exhausted and wired that I couldn't sleep.

deakymom Mon 17-Feb-14 23:19:40

i have three children one is a great sleeper one who was almost as good and one who does not flipping sleep (who is the youngest 13 months) he has slept in my bed occasionally but not all night usually just for an hour or two after four am ive dozed next to him for a bit he sleeps on top of the duvet with his own blanket on top (or just my dressing gown) we have only ever done it when we are desperate or freezing he always falls asleep with me on the sofa then gets transferred to bed he has not gone to his cot awake since he was ill and ended up in hospital my other son was like this right till he had a bed he has many many bad sleeping habits but he will sleep sometimes and thats all i can expect really

traininthedistance Mon 17-Feb-14 23:27:09

I'm not sure the "three types of babies" thing really works. There are lots of types of babies. I think TulipOHare has it right about being long periods of sleep being a developmental stage, like walking or talking - and likewise probably related to all sorts of individual things, physiological and cognitive and developmental, like the baby's muscle tone, temperament and digestive motility (yes, there is a huge normal range in the time it takes for the gut to empty, whether in babies or adults - hence why the frequency of baby (or adult!) pooing is so wide!) Despite generalised HV-style folk wisdom, some babies do need a feed during the night longe than others do - perhaps their gut simply empties quicker. It's well known that bf babies' guts empty quicker compared to ff babies, so they tend to wake more often.

OP are you sure most of the difference isn't just in knowing people who mostly ff rather than bf? The whole way you practice so-called "sleep hygiene" is different if you are EBF or extended BFing. Nearly everyone I know breastfeeds and cosleeps, so clearly it depends on your circle. Most mothers and fathers I know are mid-late thirties or early forties, work (normally flexibly), do attachment parenting, don't wean until 6mo, share childcare equally between mum and dad, and talk endlessly about how their baby doesn't sleep through the night. It's definitely not thought of as normal for an 8mo to "sleep through".

My DD wasn't a "bad sleeper". She slept great: she just didn't sleep for a long period without waking up for a quick feed and resettling, which is a very different thing an totally normal, physiologically, for a breastfed 8mo. FWIW she had/has an excellent "routine", and will sleep for a 12hr block overnight 8-8 like clockwork - but until 12m she also woke up every 3hrs for a feed, from birth and also like clockwork. She wasn't crying or distressed, just a bit hungry, and would feed back to sleep happily. I'm not sure what I could have done to make her not need those feeds! On turning 1 she has just suddenly started sleeping for periods of 8hrs+ without waking. I think I would have caused myself a lot of fuss and heartache trying to force her to change something that she was going to outgrow naturally anyway. (Leaving DD to cry even for a short period produced meltdown - she is not one of those babies who will grizzle then stop. She works herself up into hysterics. CC or CIO would not have worked.) DD was also a baby who did not sleep much in the day - from about 2months you could get at most two 30-min naps out of her. Nothing kept her asleep longer. But she is probably not temperamentally a sleepy baby - she has always been very lively: strong muscle tone from birth (trying to lift head right from birth), loads of energy, sat and walked early, beady eyes following everything - she was just a bit hyper during the day and not keen on sleeping. That's just how she is. I couldn't have made her nap more, or stop waking every 3hrs in the night to eat, any more than it was somehow some achievement of mine that she had unusually strong neck muscles at birth. That's how she came!

Anyway, why is there this ingrained cultural assumption that not "sleeping through" without waking is "poor" or "bad" sleeping? As others on the thread have pointed out, tiny babies are designed to wake up every few hours to feed and to wake you up. This is so they don't die. Routines, sleep training and "sleep hygiene" are ways of managing and overriding this to make it fit our desires and lives. Not many people on the thread have mentioned SIDS, but it's worth saying again: the main risk period for SIDS is up until 6 months (but it's not risk-free after), hence the recommendation for babies not to sleep alone until then (and 8mo is not that much older than 6mo). And waking frequently in the night is a physiological protection for the baby; it's known to be a risk factor for SIDS for a baby to sleep too long without arousal out of a deep sleep state. In that context, "good" sleeping looks very different: it isn't a flaw in the baby that it wakes in the night; it's what it is meant to do, and different babies grow out of that physiological stage at different times and rates. Ultimately yes I was tired, but I was actually quite reassured that my DD woke regularly: it meant that she was doing what healthy babies routinely do.

MoominsYonisAreScary Mon 17-Feb-14 23:42:15

My good sleeper went to pot when we introduced solid food.

IfNotNowThenWhen Mon 17-Feb-14 23:52:05

I don't think an 8 month old needs food in the night though, really. I did do the " dream feed" thing until around 6/7 months(despite my MIL furiously denying that a baby could feed while asleep!") whereby I would lift the sleeping baby out of bed and he would latch on for a feed, then place him back in the cot, still asleep. I do think, however, that implying that babies need to wake several times a night past the newborn stage or they might die is basically rubbish.
My sisters dd's both slept thru from about 3 weeks old, and she would dream feed them at around 11, and then nothing until morning. They are, miraculously, still living.
I have a few friends, made from toddler groups, like your friends traininthedistance-older parents, lots of theories about slings and co sleeping, and I remember one couple who would cuddle/rock their toddler to sleep at night, and took turns getting into bed with him at night when he woke (six times a night) The woman was so frickin grumpy all the time due to lack of sleep, and never wanted to play with her kids, or read to them, or have any fun really. I would rather feel human in the day, so that I can interact with my children than martyr myself to some theory, based on the fear that my constant nighttime ministrations are the only thing keeping them from a cot death.

IfNotNowThenWhen Mon 17-Feb-14 23:55:39

Oh, and I also think it's untrue that EBF babies don't sleep as well. Breast milk is better digested and causes less irritation and wind. It's just that bf ing mothers are instructed to feed 24/7, "because of nature", and so end up getting no sleep!

I don't think an 8 month old needs food in the night though, really. Who knows? My 3 yo eats like a horse and always has. Hungry all the time. She's below average BMI just always running and moving. She eats three squares and about four snacks a day including just before bed. At 8 mo, she was always hungry too. Maybe just a hungry baby...

MoominsYonisAreScary Tue 18-Feb-14 00:03:37

My ebf baby was the only one who slept well

anothernumberone Tue 18-Feb-14 00:05:41

OP are you sure most of the difference isn't just in knowing people who mostly ff rather than bf? The whole way you practice so-called "sleep hygiene" is different if you are EBF or extended BFing. Nearly everyone I know breastfeeds and cosleeps, so clearly it depends on your circle. Most mothers and fathers I know are mid-late thirties or early forties, work (normally flexibly), do attachment parenting, don't wean until 6mo, share childcare equally between mum and dad, and talk endlessly about how their baby doesn't sleep through the night. It's definitely not thought of as normal for an 8mo to "sleep through

This is my suspicion too. I know from my formula feeding days how important it was that a child slept through because night time feeds are soooo painful. When I had DS I had the same expectations as with the other 2 but once I met people who bf longer term it was obvious that I needed to change expectations. I remember at my first bf meeting lots of talk about babies not sleeping and I knew mine would be different, like my other 2 smile but he wasn't. I was also surprised by how it was less important as the lacating hormones knock you out and you get the sleep you need so long as you don't get up and about duirng the night.

The reality is that it is only since industralisation and really the Victorian era that the circumstance has developed where we try to toughen our babies up and make them stand on their own two feet before they can even stand on their own two feet. For generations everyone slept well because mothers and babies slept together and that was how it was. That practice still goes on across the world. Modern advice which supposedly is trying to encourage bf even discourages co sleeping which shows just how out of touch the establishment is with what is normal or often even really possible for bf babies.

traininthedistance Tue 18-Feb-14 00:08:15

ifnotnow <sigh> my point was that tiny babies do wake in the night so they don't die - they feed, they get their needs met from a carer to prevent neglect. And the current direction of SIDS research is exactly that routine waking stops a baby from entering too- deep sleep states during which the autonomic nervous system may shut down (currently though to be one of the mechanisms of SIDS). So yes, little babies wake to keep themselves alive. But who says when a baby "should" have "grown out of" that? Since we now know a lot more about the age-linked risk profile of SIDS (hence the advice to avoid lone sleeping before 6m), why should folk wisdom about when babies should or shouldn't sleep through still get parroted about? Most advice I was given by well meaning people (including HCPs) was totally free of any evidence base and mostly dated from years ago and/or is based on mainly FF babies. Eg. where's your evidence that all 8 month olds don't need to eat in the night? Why not?

traininthedistance Tue 18-Feb-14 00:10:42

And it's not true that bf mothers are just told to feed 24/7 (!) formula takes longer to be digested by the gut compared the breast milk; this may be a reason why ff babies tend to wake less often for feeding (though it doesn't apply to all babies of course).

ElleBellyBeeblebrox Tue 18-Feb-14 00:12:33

Anyway, babies gain more from feeding at night than just a full tummy.

bigkidsdidit Tue 18-Feb-14 06:15:03

According to large observational studies there are no differences in the sleep of bf and ff babies.

BeeInYourBonnet Tue 18-Feb-14 07:02:07

Both my ebf babies slept through the night from 4/5m. From my own unscientific study ( people I know who bf/off!) Feeding method made no difference to sleep patterns.

Squitten Tue 18-Feb-14 07:43:58

I've also been blessed with kids who don't want to sleep through the night until they are about 2.

Did you know that ADULTS didn't sleep through the night before the invention of electric lights? Sleep was staggered and there was an awake period in the middle of the night when people would be up doing all sorts. Sleep patterns changed once everyone had to shift to industrial work patterns. We are trying to train these natural habits out of kids and, whilst it's great of they can do it, some find it difficult.

Do whatever makes your life easiest but there is no "right" way.

purplebaubles Tue 18-Feb-14 08:41:28

No one has really pointed out the obvious which is that no baby actually sleeps totally through the night. Every baby/child wakes up. They sleep in cycles. It's how they cope when they wake up that is the difference.

Babies that are secure in their beds/not in pain/not stressed/basically quite happy will merely mooch a little and then simply go back to sleep.

This is the 'training' (which is a bad choice of word, but there really isn't another one!) which needs to take place as early as possible. I'm pretty sure once the baby gets to 6months+ it's too late and if your baby is going to wake up and scream the place down/climb the cot walls/wail uncontrollably, they're going to continue to do it until such an age where you can enforce them staying in bed.

I will get flamed for this, but I do remember, we put DD in her cot and her own room at 8 weeks. I also recall saying to DH when she was 6 months, thank god we hadn't waited that long, or else they'd be no chance she'd be happy to go off in her own little room, she'd be scared/worried/missing us etc etc. She was such an independent miss at 6 months. (also just to say, her room is next door to ours, and we could hear everything, plus had a video monitor)

Megrim Tue 18-Feb-14 09:58:23

I'm with you on this purple - I know my kids would wake as babies but they could settle themselves back to sleep. They weren't hungry, as had been fed at 11pm and could go happily until 7am. My midwife told me that formula takes longer to digest than breast milk so formula fed babies tend to sleep longer.

As my DH pointed out, why would a co-sleeping baby want to settle itself back to sleep if there is boobies and food and a willing parent on tap?

MoominsYonisAreScary Tue 18-Feb-14 10:07:17

Well mine self settled and slept through until 7 months so not sure what happened there!

LaQueenOfHearts Tue 18-Feb-14 10:20:26

I think it depends on how you want your life to be, once you have children?

For me, it was very important that our DDs kept to a good bed time routine, and slept in their own rooms and slept through. This is because, I like my life to be calm and orderly, and I love my sleep.

So, I set out to achieve this - and by the time the DDs were 7/8 months, we had it down pat - sleeping though 7-6ish virtually every night. To this day, they always sleep through, unless they're ill.

Most of my friends were exactly the same - loved their children, but also loved to see them go to bed, and have the evening to themselves, and their beds to themselves.

The few friends I know, who had a far more chaotic approach to bedtimes/sleeping etc - ended up never getting a full night's sleep...and years later they had 4/5/6 year olds who still woke in the night, every night.

And, 5 years after that, they have pre-teens who still just don't sleep well.

lljkk Tue 18-Feb-14 10:33:05

Of course I wanted my life to be hectic & disorganised and never have any time to myself, so that's why I "allowed" my children to be bad sleepers. Silly me, not to realise that before.


LaQueenOfHearts Tue 18-Feb-14 10:35:58

I have no idea of your circumstances lljk - I only know of my friend's circumstances.

I don't suppose they especially enjoyed the sleepless nights, and the waking etc - but, looking at their lives pre-children, they had always been able to tolerate a level of disorganisation/chaos/randomness, far higher than I would ever have been comfortable with.

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 11:07:08

With you purple and Megrim. My DD often wakes in the night and has a little chat/sing/move around her cot. Then she happily goes back to sleep on her own unless she is in pain. She also went into her own cot at 5 weeks, and her own room about 10 weeks. This room was right next to us with a video monitor. She is very secure about spending the night alone, without food or drink, and I think this has a lot to do with the help we gave her early on to sleep without too much assistance.

MinesAPintOfTea Tue 18-Feb-14 11:13:44

slightlyconfused85 DS went into his own room at just after 1 year and does exactly the same as your DD. We kept him there because I restarted an intense degree course just after he passed six months (I worry about SIDS) and couldn't afford to disrupt the fact that he was sleeping through.

When a bad patch of sleep coincided with a lull in my studies we put the effort in to move his room. It took less than a week and he went back to sleeping through.

Its luck, not moving your baby to their room early that makes the difference.

MinesAPintOfTea Tue 18-Feb-14 11:15:15

* We kept him in our room for so long

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 11:26:33

At the almost certainty of being flamed I don't think it has that much to do with luck after the 4/5 month point. You are lucky if you have a newborn or very young baby that sleeps through, after that point I think it's down to a lot of other things, but not really luck.

The only thing that is lucky is if you have a 12 hour sleeper rather than a 8/9/10. I believe that all children, even babies, can sleep a fairly long chunk without food or a lot of parental assistance.

I have a friend who was still struggling to get her baby to sleep at 8/9 months. She got tough with night feeds/sleeping in own cot and by 10 months he was doing 11 hours with only the occasional wake up.

My mum said I was her worst sleeper, but I just slept for less hours so had to go to bed later. I also slept for a long chunk, just not as long as my siblings.

Madasabox Tue 18-Feb-14 11:34:14

I have never ever had my two in my bed no matter how many times I had to get up. I think that is a slippery slope. Similarly when my two transitioned to a bed, I never had prolonged problems with them getting out of it. Sure they tried at first, but they soon realised that that was going to be met with nothing but implacable resistance from me. My DD1 slept through from a really early age (she's naturally a good sleeper), my DS1 is much more variable and was much more tricky. Even now at 2.5 if he sleeps through then I view it as a huge positive as he is more typically awake a couple of times a night. I would still never ever co-sleep though I have slept on his floor before when he was tiny! I think there are elements of luck in the whole thing in that it is dependent on the child's nature, BUT I also think that parental approach makes a big difference. In the friends I have who have consistently good sleepers versus consistently bad sleepers, their approach to sleep is typical of most other aspects of their parenting. Incidentally (and I know I will get flamed for this) I firmly believe that there is no excuse for a child of 3 and above to be waking its parents up consistently (unless a medical reason, sickness etc). 3 year olds are easily old enough to understand what is acceptable behaviour and what is not.

traininthedistance Tue 18-Feb-14 11:45:45

So, those who advocate moving the baby to their own room early on, are you suggesting that people should ignore current NHS guidelines that babies should not sleep alone (not even for naps) until at least six months?

The research suggests that it isn't just about keeping an eye on them (by monitor etc.): the physical presence of the parent - noises, and especially breathing and the regulation of carbon dioxide in the room by the patent's breathing, help prevent the baby from falling into too deep a sleep and not being able to arouse. Current thinking on SIDS is that it is linked to a failure to arouse properly from deep sleep states.

To suggest that those whose babies "fail" to "sleep through" haven't been assiduous enough in their sleep training, including not putting the baby in its own room before six months, goes directly against current (evidence based) medical advice.

Concerned about SIDS? Nah, you just want your baby to sleep badly! hmm

anothernumberone Tue 18-Feb-14 11:54:29

Slightly confused as I said up thread my DDs did all of what you say from 8 weeks with absolutely no encouragement from either of us other than to put them in bed.

I do believe formula contributes to that because I have more experience of formula fed kids in my own family and there is a definite expectation that kids need to sleep through the night from early on from family members.

When I went on to bf number 3 for longer than his sisters, he did not sleep and I met a lot of bf mums through bf groups and I found that for them not sleeping was totally normal. In fact the women who bf is accordance with bf norms had no expectation of kids sleeping at all because everything 'evidence based' you read about bf babies explains that this is relatively rare although obviously still possible.

I think it is well and good for posters to say sleeping through is normal but you need to remember that is a cultural norm and not a biological norm. Biologically babies are programmed to wake up.

anothernumberone Tue 18-Feb-14 11:57:03

Feck sake my phone is actung up and I posted too soon again.

But what I trying to say is that they are programmed to wake for feeds.

JassyRadlett Tue 18-Feb-14 12:00:11

Slightly, is that working on an assumption of no reflux, eating issues, or general temperament that makes many forms of sleep training utterly futile? Or is just a general blanket statement based on... I don't know? Your gut feeling?

I was full of smuggery about what a good (nighttime) sleeper I had until DS was six or seven months. Then it all went to utter shit and we tried all manner of strategies - committing to each in turn until it became obvious that it was pointless - until we cracked it. The fact that cracking it coincided with several other things vastly improving was of course not coincidental at all.

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 12:02:02

I am the bloody queen of organisation, routine and need for time for myself. My children still didn't bloody sleep until they were 18 months.

My ds (five months) woke every 45 minutes last night. If he had been lying flat in a cot, even propped up, he simply wouldn't have slept. Co sleeping is the only way I get any sleep AT ALL. Not co sleeping would be the act of a masochist.

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 12:05:21

too many bloodys
i am a bit tired

Madasabox Tue 18-Feb-14 12:11:06

I agree with the poster who pointed out that of course all children wake up during the night. The difference is what they do when they wake up - do they lie there and talk to themselves until they go back to sleep like DD1 or do they yell for mummy like DS1. All I know is that I was much more strict with DD1 as I was still working and needed my sleep and much more indulgent with DS1, so I have made a rod for my own back with his waking and not being able to self-settle. DD1 is a heavy sleeper though and DS1 is a very light sleeper, but I still put some of that down to me rather than him. Still I would never co-sleep, I would never feed during the night once they were weaned and I would never ever let them come downstairs once they had had their bath and pyjamas on. I would also never let them come out of their rooms once they had been put to bed unless they needed to go to the toilet and even then it is straight there, straight back, no talking. I also do not let them come out of their room before 7am in the morning. My DD1 wakes up between 6am and 6:30am, but she knows the rules. No getting up until 7am.

kungfupannda Tue 18-Feb-14 12:24:05

I think a huge amount of it is luck. We were pretty slapdash with DS1 - no bedtime routine, and just letting him get on with what he seemed to want to do - and he slept through from 6 weeks and has never regressed once.

With DS2, we were probably slightly more routine-based, just because DS2 had more of a routine by then, but we still co-slept, fed whenever, and made no attempts to sleep train. He was more of a "normal" sleeper, but still pretty good - so sleeping in quite long stretches by about 4 months, but still waking once a night until about 8 or 9 months, and then waking sporadically until fairly recently - he's now 2.

A friend of mine whose DCs are almost exactly the same age as my two did pretty much the same thing and they both woke multiple times a night and are still poor sleepers.

Some babies might respond better to one approach or another, but I think some are just naturally inclined to sleep for long stretches.

We can't claim any credit for any of it - we just got lucky.

Megrim Tue 18-Feb-14 12:26:44

train there was no such advice on room sharing to help avoid SIDS when my children were babies. We were still dealing with the MMR fallout. Given the major risk factors for SIDS (maternal age, smoking, baby birth weight etc) I would still be comfortable to move them into their own room at 4 months.

TheRaniOfYawn Tue 18-Feb-14 12:37:53

My kids were both terrible sleepers as babies. But they both went from waking up 8-10 times a night to sleeping through most nights in the space of a couple of weeks when they tray in much the same way that they started walking. In their case, sleeping through was something that they started doing when they were developmentally ready at the age of 2 (DD) and 3 (DS).

DS is 4 and sometimes still climbs into bed with us at 5am if he wakes up and feels lonely. The visits are getting fewer and fewer. DD is 7 and comes into bed with us of she has s nightmare about twice a year. Her only sleep problem is trying to read after lights out, which I have to be strict about.

So non sleeping children are not doomed to a lifetime of insomnia. Mine just weren't ready to sleep through the night until they were toddlers.

Elderberri Tue 18-Feb-14 12:43:28

I know over a dozen families who co sleep. Maybe it's the circles you mix in.

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 12:47:09

Everything I think is of course based on healthy babies who eat well. Not babies with reflux/low birth weight/feeding issues/poor eaters.

I am just of the opinion that there is a lot more than luck involved in healthy children that can sleep through a fair chunk of the night after a few months, with the right encouragement. I don't think BF or FF has an awful lot to do with it.

I completely agree that all children wake in the night and this is biologically normal, but as a previous poster said it is what they do when they wake.

I know people with two or more children whom they have treated differently over sleep for varying reasons. The ones that they were a bit stricter with after a certain point are, with no exceptions, better sleepers than the ones that co-slept and got milk feeds into their second year.

My opinion is based on what I think yes, just like everybody else on here. If people think it is down to luck then that is their completely valid opinion, but I disagree based on personal exprerience and the experience of friends and family.

Handsoff7 Tue 18-Feb-14 12:55:00

Traininthedistance, I can't believe you're citing SIDS as a reason TO co-sleep.

Co-sleeping although only praticed by around 21% of the population is associated with 57% of the SIDS deaths

If you follow the numbers through, around 100 excess infant deaths per year can be attributed to co-sleeping.

For comparison, 24 under 1s died in accidents in 2012 (all accidents and not just motor accidents are included in this number)

These numbers are still pretty small overall and there are safer & less safe ways to co-sleep but the SIDs risk is still massively increased not decreased.

I always find it odd the way MN obsesses about extended rear facing car seats and ignores the risks of co-sleeping.

JassyRadlett Tue 18-Feb-14 13:04:01

Train was talking about keeping children in your room, not co-sleeping, unless I've missed something.

Slightly - any evidence, or just gut feeling/anecdote? Particularly on the FF/BF divide or non-divide?

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 13:08:49

Jassy I guess I was just thinking of the original post, but in terms of SIDS advice I think that people have to make their own decisions on this. My DD slept on her back, in a smoke free home and was a very healthy birthweight so we chose to have her in her own room with a video recorder after 10 weeks. This incidentally, helped to to stop waking everytime we coughed or moved. In terms of co-sleeping, I'm pretty sure SIDS advice is not to anyway!? My HV was very keen to discourage when my DD was a newborn as I'm sure there is a lot of evidence pointing at this being unsafe.

No I don't have official evidence, only personal experience and a lot of friends and family with babies. The only difference I can see with BF/FF is that breast feeding mothers often co-sleep because it is easier to organise the feed (I get this) and then babies seem to have milk on tap all night. I can't imagine that this encourages children to sleep through the night when they are past newborn/little baby stage.

traininthedistance Tue 18-Feb-14 13:11:04

If you read my post properly I was writing about the current NHS guidelines to keep babies in the same room as you during all sleeps until 6 months. Seeing as many posters on thus thread have cited putting their babies in their own rooms earlier than that to encourage "sleeping through".

Your reading of the research on cosleeping deaths is flawed, though, for a variety of reasons, no less than at least 50% of the population regularly or occasionally cosleep according to most studies. Even the most recent big metastudy only found a tiny potential increase in SIDS rush due to cosleeping in the lowest risk infants and that only under 3 months.

traininthedistance Tue 18-Feb-14 13:14:41

And that study also suggested that the elevated risk factor of baby in separate room was higher than the risk attributed to cosleeping in the lowest-risk groups (healthy bf non smokers), who tend to be the people who do cosleep. Unsafe cosleeping by high risk groups is not the same thing at all. There is also an elevated risk associated with parents having drunk large amounts of alcohol even if not cosleeping and baby in separate room.

nickEcave Tue 18-Feb-14 13:23:20

I completely understand why you would want your 8 month old baby to sleep through the night. If you are returning to work around the nine month mark you probably need to try and find a way to get your 8 month old baby to sleep through the night if you are going to function at work. This does not mean that 8 month old babies can or will sleep through the night! My first DD slept for 10 hours a night (except during bouts of teething) from the age of 5 months. Second DD rarely slept an entire night until she was three. Both were treated identically

LaQueenOfHearts Tue 18-Feb-14 13:24:44

I found that the harder I worked to instill good sleeping habits in my DDs, the luckier I got with them sleeping well wink

Handsoff7 Tue 18-Feb-14 13:29:40

The study compared a control group for a random night and a group of SIDs victims for the night the infant died.

21% of controls co-slept and 57% of the infants that died co-slept.

The proportion occasionally co-sleeping is higher than 21% I agree but this isn't relevant to the risks assessed here.

The study also agrees that in a cot in the same room is the best option. On a sofa is by far the worst and the survey noted the risk of recommending avoidance of co-sleeping
could lead to accidental sofa co-sleeping.

Please let me know if there was anything else I've misread about the survey and give a link to the meta-study as this is important stuff to know.

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 13:34:35

It is fine to co sleep if you want Train or anyone else for that matter, people can do whatever they like with their babies! You don't need to get worked up about it, it's just that the OP said this is the advice she always gets when asking about sleep advice and she doesn't find it helpful. Safe or not, babies are not likely to sleep through while they share beds with their parents, and some parents don't really like co-sleeping. My DD slept in her own room because that was our choice, just like co-sleeping is yours. This was not to 'make' her sleep through - it was so she was not disturbed my me and my DH who are fidgety sleepers. Incidentally, I expect it helped her sleep through but this was not the only reason. I think we have established my children only sleep through because I am lucky, and luck is an established sleep training technique on MN.

Megrim Tue 18-Feb-14 13:48:39

Perhaps someone should write a book on how to get lucky wink

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 13:52:17

well, my two older children sleep well now so perhaps I should back off and stop being annoyed by smug people, remembering that ds2 is only 5 months old with reflux

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 13:52:39

grin Megrim I think it would look an awful lot like some of the existing sleep training books.

I'm going to run for cover now

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 13:53:17

Refluxy and ill babies obviously are clearly a different case entirely.

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 13:54:02

well you are lucky if your child doesn't have reflux

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 13:56:42

x post grin

God, this thread is giving me such a rage. And if you think about it, both my older children slept well by 18 months. So I could be smug and judgemental about other parents. But do you know, I am not because I can imagine that not all children are the same, and that having experienced lack of sleep on a daily basis I assume that people WILL be trying their best to get their child to sleep?

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 13:57:40

perhaps we should write a book on how to avoid being a smug git

<runs for cover>

see how annoying that is?

KonkeyDong Tue 18-Feb-14 14:03:10

Humphrey you have my sympathies, we've just been through the waking every 45mins weeks. There's light at the end of the tunnel, DD went 3hours solidly lasts night.

JassyRadlett Tue 18-Feb-14 14:06:07

What Humphrey said.

widdle Tue 18-Feb-14 14:12:01

DS (8 months) is on a strict routine, in bed by 7pm every night, not fed/rocked to sleep, goes to sleep happily, nice and healthy..... for the last 2 weeks has woken up 2 hours later screaming and screaming and screaming!!

Advice? Anyone? Anyone? Anyone?

You can do every thing 'right' and by the book and STILL have a cr ap sleeper - do you really think every single baby is exactly the same? Bizarre

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 14:13:36

It doesn't annoy me one bit Humphrey. It is okay to be a little lighthearted now and again.

I am not in anyway smug, I just think I have helped my daughter to sleep to the best of her ability. She still wakes up sometimes, I still have shit nights, She still only eats two varieties of vegetables, she still throws almighty tantrums. I will also be teaching her to manage these things to the best of her and my ability with varying degrees of scucess. Not smug, just doing my level best at parenting as I'm sure you are - we just have different approaches to sleep.

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 14:15:25

Smug is another MN favourite isn't it? If your baby or child does something well then you are a definitely a smug parent. This is a very emotional forum sometimes with people getting way too wound up about different approaches and opinions. Using your own child as an example is not smug, it is just an example.

PoorOldCat Tue 18-Feb-14 14:18:37

OP, your last post makes it very clear that neither of your babies have slept well at all. See if this was me, this would indicate (anecdotally) to me that it isn't actually normal for babies to sleep a lot/at adult times when they are tiny.

' He's now sleeping through again but it hasn't been easy. '

That's because it isn't supposed to be the case. You are swimming against the tide.

Fwiw all three of mine have slept pretty well - in my bed, fed on demand, without crying. It isn't rocket science.

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 14:19:36

but slightlyconfused85, imagine if I said to you that your child's fussy eating was the result of your lack of parenting. And then added <runs for cover>. WOuldn't you find it annoying?

I am assuming that you do your best to get your daughter to eat vegetables. You should assume that we are doing our best to get our children to sleep.

Megrim Tue 18-Feb-14 14:19:59

What is equally annoying is when you're called "lucky" when you've put thought, research, time and effort into developing and applying a consistent routine that works for you and your baby.

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 14:24:09

not nearly as annoying as putting thought, research, time and effort into developing and applying a consistent routine that COMPLETELY FAILS TO WORK and being called lazy and disorganised for it.

It is lucky not to get a non sleeper.

widdle Tue 18-Feb-14 14:25:01

To all those who really do think they have it cracked I would genuinely like to hear what advice you can give me re my post above...

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 14:26:19

but ok, i do accept that people try to get the children sleeping and their efforts often do work

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 14:30:23

When have I ever said that you are not doing your best? I have never said this humphrey I just said we have different approaches to sleep.

No I wouldn't find it annoying, because although I do my best to get her to eat vegetables, I'm sure there is something I could have done/do to have more success. I would most definitely also be open to help and suggestions from people who have more luck than me. What would annoy me is if people said 'Well, some people are just lucky and their kids eat vegetables, and the rest of us we have to suffer and muddle along in whatever way, until the child is 3 or 4 and is naturally developmentally ready to eat vegetables'. That is what would annoy me. I would also not consider the mothers of good eaters to be 'smug', simply that they have cracked a technique or stumbled upon an idea that I haven't yet tried. I certainly wouldn't jump down their throat for making suggestions,or get annoyed with them. But we're all different hey.

Megrim Tue 18-Feb-14 14:36:30

Humphrey I would not call you lazy and disorganised?

I reserve that for the family I know where the children are allowed to be up and playing at 3 am and are then too tired for school, and so are allowed to stay home and sleep instead.

HumphreyCobbler Tue 18-Feb-14 14:37:55

but why would you assume we have a massively different attitude to sleep? Is it because I am co sleeping?

you seem to equate having a bad sleeper with not trying
most of us tried it all
I am open to suggestions

you are smug if you think that only your superior parenting skills are the reason your child sleeps and mine doesn't - if you don't think that then fair enough

BeeInYourBonnet Tue 18-Feb-14 14:42:34

I have a great eater and a terrible eater.
Both treated exactly the same, both good/bad eaters/drinkers from birth.

But in response to my DS's poor eating, I have not just fed him any old crap, I have persevered in encouraging him to try new tastes, in different ways. It has been nightmarish at times, hiding veg in sauces, cooking healthy dinners that go uneaten, being nagged for snacks, epic mealtimes. But I have read up on it, tried different approaches with quite a lot of success and some compromises.

I have friends with bad eaters who constantly give into demands for unhealthy snacks, allow these snacks close to mealtimes and then act surprised that dinner goes uneaten.

In relation to the sleep analogy, I don't feel like I have failed in getting my son to eat well, I think I have tried everything I can with some success. If I gave in on every bad-eating whim I would feel I'd failed.

Same is true with sleep. If you can make some in roads into achieving good sleeping, then you have made a positive difference.

JassyRadlett Tue 18-Feb-14 14:44:00

Slightly, if your child does something well and you claim credit for it when there is real debate about how much influence you had over it, then yep, that's smug.

Statements like 'I don't think it has that much to do with luck after the 4/5 month point. You are lucky if you have a newborn or very young baby that sleeps through, after that point I think it's down to a lot of other things, but not really luck.' in the context of your own children who have cracked sleep relatively early does come across as smug.

I tried very hard not to be smug when I had a 10 week old who went down to sleep at 7pm every night, having set his own bedtime, had a dream feed at 11pm and then slept until 6am because that was nothing to do with me, really.

Just like when it all went horribly wrong between 7 months and 18 months, it wasn't my fault and others weren't superior parents because, having tried the same strategies and put the same amount of effort in, their children had responded and mine hadn't.

For the record, he's a brilliant sleeper now at 2.5. But we had to put a lot of effort it and, crucially, recognise at some points that he was not ready, even though other people's children might have been.

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 14:46:09

I don't understand why you think I've said you don't try hard? If you are co-sleeping then yes we have different attitudes. I also believe that it is ok for children to cry a little, and I think that self-settling, and sleeping in their own cot is extremely important and means that by 8 months, many healthy children are able to sleep through most nights, from early evening until early morning. Do you think this? If not we have different attitudes.

If someone asked me for advice, this would be it and as the OP said she never gets any useful advice for sleeping, than that's what I would give her based on my own children and the children of my friends.

My children sleep through most of the time so it works for me- I have no idea what works or doesn't for you and your family. I am not smug, but I don't really care if anyone thinks that I am - I do my best for my children as I'm sure you do.

BeeInYourBonnet Tue 18-Feb-14 14:48:19

In response to my DS not eating, I have posted for constructive advice. If posters told me things which worked for them, I wouldn't be annoyed or think them smug. I'd learn from , not get defensive. Someone saying 'oh well lo's don't eat well, that's just how they are' isn't much use to me.

I think that's what the OP is talking about.

slightlyconfused85 Tue 18-Feb-14 14:52:58

Agreed Bee. This thread was originally about the giving of helpful advice, not telling people to just accept that children do things badly if there are techniques which MIGHT make things easier for them.

It doesn't make anyone smug, lazy, lucky, or anything else.

JassyRadlett Tue 18-Feb-14 14:53:15

Slightly, I took it as implied when you said that 'I don't think it has that much to do with luck after the 4/5 month point' that, rather than luck of the draw with the child you have, you felt that poor sleepers after that age were the result of something external. What did you mean by that if you didn't mean it was because of something the parents did or did not do?

I've provided lots of sleep advice to people having trouble cracking it based on my own experiences of what was effective and what wasn't for the sort of child who, when younger, didn't have a 'grizzle' mode (either calm or hysterics). Part of that is saying - well, DS was actually still hungry. When we got enough food into him during the day he slept better but sometimes that was physically impossible. Recognising that was crucial for us. Recognising that CC or gradual retreat just don't work for a lot of babies was also important, and knowing that there are other strategies out there including those that minimise, rather than eliminate, the wake-ups.

Statements like the OP's that everyone on MN goes 'wildly soft' when it comes to sleep and yours that 'it's not luck' are pretty galling in the circumstances.

I've never co-slept, for the record. Neither DS or nor I were fans. He went into his own room at 8 months.

BeeInYourBonnet Tue 18-Feb-14 15:02:14

But going back to the eating analogy, it is totally down to good luck that my DD eats well IMO. It is bad luck that my DS eats badly. But it is NOT luck that we have been successful in improving his eating habits.