How to I stop co-sleeping and get my 7 month old to sleep in a cot?

(18 Posts)
SlanketySlank Thu 11-Oct-12 20:22:27

DS2 is 7 months and has never slept without me. I didn't want to co-sleep but didn't really have a choice if I wanted to get any sleep. I wouldn't mind it at all if he went in his cot for the first part of the night and came in with me after that but he won't go in the cot at all.
Until he was 5 months old I tried every night to settle him in his cot and it always ended up with him in bed with me after two hours of him screaming (I never left him), I gave up as it was too stressful.
We live in a furnished house and the bed is really high and isn't against a wall, due to the layout of the room and other furniture there's no option to move it against a wall so I worry about DS2 falling out and can't leave him once he's alseep, this means I have to go to bed when he does (I once left him for 15mins and when I went up, his legs were dangling over the edge of the bed).
DH sleeps on the settee downstairs so his sleep isn't disturbed and he also doesn't want to share a bed with DS, he's keen for DS to sleep in a cot but isn't prepared to help me during the night. I miss spending my evening with DH, I'm just stuck in bed mumsnetting on my phone every evening.
DS2 is breastfed and feeds every 2hrs at night still which is why co-sleeping is so much easier, DH thinks I should start refusing feeds to try and stretch him to 4 hours but if I did this I'd be awake with him all night!
I just don't know what to do, I'm not happy co-sleeping, miss DH and miss sleeping on my front but its the only way DS2 will sleep.
DS1 was a really easy baby and a fantastic sleeper. DS2 is the complete opposite, he's very "high needs" and needs constant attention. Its exhausting! Especially as DS1 is only 2!
Sorry it's so long! Thanks for reading if you've got this far! Has anyone been in a similar situation or can offer any words of advice?
I'm just feeling a bit down tonight and would love my evenings back.

SlanketySlank Thu 11-Oct-12 20:25:45

When I say we live in a furnished house I mean we rent furnished so there's no option to just get rid of the bed and shove the mattress on the floor (which is what I'd love to do).

Lurking for answers. I failed miserably with dd1 who is now 4.9yo and still sleeps in my bed. Now my 9mo has abandoned her cot for the last three months and I can't get her out of the bed either.

SummerSolstice Thu 11-Oct-12 20:32:04

Hi, no suggestions as such but you're not alone. My son (nearly 7 months) is feeding every two hours during the night too. He does go to bed in his cot but inevitably ends up beside me during the very early hours. I think perhaps it could be a case of separation anxiety, rather than hunger - does that sound right to you?

SlanketySlank Thu 11-Oct-12 20:33:47

That's my fear Gwendoline! DH can't sleep on the settee for 5+ years and I'd quite like my bed back and to sleep without fear of squashing a child.
It won't be forever though, they have to move into their own bed at some point!

Brandnewbrighttomorrow Thu 11-Oct-12 20:34:50

Do you have another bed or mattress your baby could sleep on? We moved our 3 out to another bed and put a bed rail to keep them safe. I nursed them off to sleep there then went downstairs for the evening (once I'd woken, usually crashed whilst 'feigning' sleep!) I'd go to sleep initially in my own bed then just climb in with baby once they woke. None of mine would sleep in a cot, we beat ourselves up for an insane length of time with trying with our eldest, didn't bother with the others as they would scream if I even put them in there.

Wowserz129 Thu 11-Oct-12 20:40:06

I could have written this a month ago. Our stories are literally the exact same!

What I did was a gradual movement. I started of by saying he goes to bed at 7 so I will keep him in until 11 and added another 2/3 hours every week or so until he was in there all night.

I could personally could never leave my son to cry so every night I would sit beside his cot and sssh and pat him when he cried until he settled back to sleep. It has taken a hard couple of weeks and a couple of mediocre weeks but he now sleeps in his cot in his room 7-7.

SlanketySlank Thu 11-Oct-12 20:42:47

Coming in to my bed in the early hours would be fine, it's the lack of evening with DH that bothers me the most. It's ok most of the time but I do get down about it, especially when DH gets to do whatever he wants in the evening and gets an uninterrupted nights sleep. He does get up with DS1 though which helps.

Lirogiro Thu 11-Oct-12 20:43:52

Can you get bed rails to keep him safe in the bed?
We've got a cheap IKEA cot for our 7 month old that we use as a sidecar cot with one side off. I get him off to sleep in it and then go downstairs. In the night I just roll over to feed him. It works nicely for us as we've still got the whole bed to sleep in but i don't have to get up.

SlanketySlank Thu 11-Oct-12 21:00:22

Wowserz you have given me some hope! I can't leave him to cry either, he gets really distressed very quickly even I sit by the cot and stroke his head.
Brandnew that would definitely work with him! Ideally I'd just have a double mattress on the floor but we haven't got the space. He's fine once asleep, he rarely cuddles in unless he wants a feed and wouldn't wake up if I left. If we put the cot in DS1's room it's possible we could squeeze a single bed in next to our bed. I'll have to measure the space but that's a very good suggestion! Thanks!

fishcalledwonder Thu 11-Oct-12 21:12:07

I was in exactly the same position 6 months ago, co sleeping with DD and feeding all night while DH slept on sofa bed.

Now my 11mo sleeps 12 hours in her cot each night. For me, I got to the point of exhaustion and had to stop. Unfortunately this meant the end of breastfeeding at night. Not an easy decision, but neither of us were getting enough sleep or enjoying each other in the day.

I prepared myself for hours of sitting next to a crying baby (also can't leave her when upset) but she settled after 30 mins the first night, and it got quicker each night.

May not be the answer for you, but it worked for me. Also kept telling myself she wasn't scared as I never left her side, just cross with me.

SlanketySlank Thu 11-Oct-12 21:19:08

I'd still like him in the cot if possible though as we can't really afford to buy a bed at the moment.
I've decided I'm going to try tomorrow evening, I'll sit by his cot with my hand in on his back or chest and try not to get him out unless he's really upset. I think a huge part of it is overtiredness, he doesn't nap much at all and finds it hard to wind down at night but I don't know how to get him to nap better. He only naps in the pushchair.

fishcalledwonder Thu 11-Oct-12 21:25:02

DD also only slept in pushchair but I found that once sleeping in cot at night was established, naps just sorted themselves. Good luck!

mumnosbest Thu 11-Oct-12 21:26:56

Marking my place as i've put dds cot up today but not tried it yet. Shes 9 months.

SlanketySlank Thu 11-Oct-12 21:27:14

That's really helpful fish, thanks! It's good to know I'm not the only one! I don't know anyone in RL who's ever co-slept.

CuriosityColaKilledTheCat Thu 11-Oct-12 21:27:18

Was in exact same position as you. I had enough room to put my mattress on the floor of ds's nursery. So I could feed him to sleep and then leave him without him waking/falling. Was amazing to have my evenings back!

Then I put his mattress next it and started feeding him their and moving back to mine after. Then put his mattress back in cot. Then moved back to my room baby free! This did coincide with ds naturally reducing feeds. Think it helped feed wasn't so accessible.

I also trialled having his mattress on the floor beside my bed. I kept falling asleep down there with him, while dh had the bed to himself.

Whatever you try, if it becomes stressful your dc probably isn't ready. Another few weeks could make a huge difference.

I also second having a bed guard for when dc is in bed with you.

Hope this helps.

TempusFuckit Thu 11-Oct-12 21:37:22

Yep, was in similar position - co-sleeping at same age, although I would leave him safely on bed with cot acting as a bedrail at the beginning of the night.

We cracked it by stopping feeding to sleep in favour of shh-pat at beginning of night, then making sure he went back in cot after each night feed (that was a killer week, having to stay awake through every feed ...) then what really made the difference was putting his cot in his own room. No more accessible boobs=dramatic drop-off in night feeds.

Now expecting DC2 and if we do end up co-sleeping again, will be starting the process of moving to own room much earlier, so they're in there at 6 months. I was convinced it would never work first time round ...

SlanketySlank Thu 11-Oct-12 21:40:02

He has no daytime routine, he refuses solids mostly and breastfeeds on demand, he won't nap when he's tired as he needs to be on the move to nap. I do think if I get him in the cot at night, he'll start napping in there too and he'll be much happier. He's always overtired. I'm actually thinking about putting him in a very strict routine for a couple of weeks to see if it helps.
DS1 just went into his own routine at about 10 weeks old, he used to nap 2 hours in the morning and 3 hours in the afternoon and sleep 12hrs at night and was (and still is) so happy and laid back. Poor DS2 probably gets about 12hrs total sleep per 24hrs, he's very smiley but always seems tense, he never stops moving and cries lots.
I know some of it just different personalities but I do wonder if he's just overtired all the time.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now