Why is my DS2 so unhappy at bedtime feed?

(11 Posts)
ilovetosleep Sun 15-Jun-14 19:52:54

He is 9 weeks old. For a good while now he has fed after a bath at 6.30/7pm and gone to sleep for 5-6 hours. The last week has been awful, I take him up to our bed for a feed and the screaming begins. He refuses the breast, arches his back, kicks his legs and just screams. I try to offer him the breast and he behaves like I am torturing him. On occasion i have tried to shove it in which I think might lead to negative associations so I know I need to stop this. Eventually ( after an hour or so) he might conk out or take the boob for a few half hearted sucks before falling asleep. He'll then wake after half an hour for a slightly better feed, but still not a big one. Night wakings have increased.

I have suspected reflux as he rarely likes to be on his back (sleeps ok at night though) and his 'possets' are curdy, and if they don't come up I can hear him swallowing them, and his breath smells acidic. But, he only screams at bedtime. He'll take the boob happily during the day, around every 2.5-3 hours.

I am worried that he doesn't want to feed at bedtime either because supply is low then or he is in pain. But I know if he doens't feed then my supply won't increase! Never had supply issues in the past.

DS1 was the same, he screamed at bedtime for several months and I had pnd and never really forgave myself for not being able to comfort him. I just don't know why my babies won't settle and I am dreading the months ahead. All my friends second babies have been in bed with a lovely bedtime with their older siblings and all asleep by 7.30. In our house my DS2 screams and keeps DS1 not only awake but upset with the crying sad

what could it be?

carolinementzer Mon 16-Jun-14 09:13:02

Does he look in pain? Is he colicky do you think?

ilovetosleep Mon 16-Jun-14 16:49:48

Thanks for replying. I don't know really. I think so but the screaming starts every night just as I offer the boob for that last feed at 7pm. I just don't get why. I suppose he could not be that hungry having had a feed around 5pm but I thought bf babies fed for comfort and sleep as well as food!!
Not sure about colic. It doesn't go on for hours and hours like I imagine colic to do and it seems to be linked to feeding rather than just nothing at all.

DustyRusty Tue 17-Jun-14 10:16:59

Mine's the same. Do you feed him with the lights dimmed? I do, and wonder if he associates this with the fact he's about to be put to bed & consequently gets upset? Might try feeding him in the light tonight. I think a lot of it with mine is overtiredness, then we get into the too tired to eat, too hungry to sleep problem! It's my DC2 too, so hard fitting round toddler's routine. I just keep chanting 'it'll get easier' through gritted teeth!

minipie Tue 17-Jun-14 12:54:10

My first thought would be overtiredness. How much does he get in the way of naps in the day?

Seeline Tue 17-Jun-14 12:58:48

Is he actually hungry? Little ones routines change as they grow. Just because a bath and feed have worked in the previous weeks, does not necessarily mean that it is right at the moment. When is his previous feed, and how long does he go between feeds at other times of the day?

ilovetosleep Wed 18-Jun-14 22:15:04

Over tiredness was a thought of mine too. He naps on and off during the day, sometimes lots of 45 mins naps and sometimes a couple of long ones. He can't really stay awake longer than 1hr 20 and so I try to stick to that, but usually by bed time e will hve been awake 2 hrs as its hard to get a nap in at 5 pm with toddler dinner going on. Today he had 2 x 45 mins in the morning, 2 hr nap in the afternoon and then a 20min cat nap at 6pm. He didnt scream this evening, but he also wasnt really that tired. We DS tom him to sleep around 8pm though which is ok.

As for hunger, again I suppose it's a possibility as we are feeding on demand during the day (2-3 hourly) yet the last feed is always offered rather than requested. I guess he usually has a feed around 530 white toddler eats dinner, so yes 7 pm might be too soon.

So I guess what this is implying is that if I want him to have a routine at bed time I need to implement one during te day? Or if I wing it during the day I need to me more flexible around bedtime?

minipie Wed 18-Jun-14 22:55:44

yes I think so! if he feeds and sleeps differently each day, he won't want bedtime feed/sleep at the same time each day.... Naps sound ok to me.

DustyRusty Sun 22-Jun-14 14:33:01

How's it going? We had the same problem, now expressing every evening after baby's in bed, then giving that milk in a bottle as his bedtime feed the next day. Has stopped all the screaming!

ilovetosleep Sun 22-Jun-14 14:42:06

Thats interesting dusty. Do you think he wasn't getting enough milk at the bedtime feed? I must admit I don't think DS gets a lot at that time of day because he's tired, a bit sloppy at the latch and very on and off.

He's stopped crying actually but its getting harder and harder to settle him. I'll feed to sleep, put him down, wake up, feed again, repeat. He just seems wired now rather than upset. Night wakings have massively increased though, from 2 to every 1.5-2 hours. I wonder if giving an ebm bottle would help that, but I loved bedtime feed with DS2 and I really want to keep at it... I had considered expressing after bedtime feed though to up supply?

DustyRusty Sun 22-Jun-14 20:59:02

I think he was too tired to breastfeed properly, and if the flow was a bit too fast/slow he would cry, whereas in the daytime he would be able to deal with it better. Possibly also a bit of colic/reflux, and the more upright position of bottle-feeding may help with that.

I too loved bedtime feeds with my older DC, and am hoping this is just a phase. But for now I'm going to use formula/expressed milk, and in a few weeks I'll try going back to breast. Hopefully my supply will be unaffected, as I pump every evening.

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