I have no idea when or how much my baby sleeps

(10 Posts)
MissCoffeeNWine Sun 30-Dec-12 16:45:25

I have been toying with the idea of trying to do some kind of routine? with the baby who is 4 months old. Maybe to do with sleep or trying to put her to bed in the evenings, maybe even in a different room. I'm not really bothered by how things are at the moment but I suppose it feels a bit chaotic. Just brought to a head by seeing family babies of similar ages at parties over the festivities I think and hearing that they sleep 8-8 or only wake up once and go straight back to sleep in cots in their own rooms and so on. There were people leaving parties at 7pm to go home and put their babies in bed which made me feel awful because we had only just turned up at that point and ended up staying on till past midnight with the baby sleeping wherever and whenever she wanted - which is what we do most of the time really.

I can just about get an approximate of when she has been asleep over the last 12-24 hours but no idea what is usual or normal or what I should be doing to be honest. It still feels like she's a newborn and we're taking it day by day but she's getting older and it's kind of crept up on us.

At the moment she sleeps when and where she is tired and wakes whenever, same with feeding. She sleeps in a crib or in our bed if she is fussy in the night. I don't really register when she wakes or how long for, I turned off my clock when she was born. I don't feel particularly sleep deprived. But I do feel pretty inept and like I cant join in a single conversation about baby sleep or baby feeding.....please help set me straight and tell me what I should be doing!

HearMyRoar Sun 30-Dec-12 17:40:46

Sounds like you are doing fine to me. If you and your dd are happy then why change things?

We never intentionally introduced a routine and just went with what dd wanted to do, this suited us as we are not really routine people. I found that dd slowly developed a routine of her own over time. Once she got onto eating solids properly around 7 months, naps fell into line with meal times and now, at 9 months, we have a pretty fixed daily routine. To be perfectly honest i now more as the times when she was more flexible and we could stay up with her.

Seriously, if you aren't into the whole routine thing then I would suspect that trying to enforce one will only cause you and your DC stress and serve no other purpose then providing you with some conversation. relax, enjoy your staying up late while you can and find something else to talk to people about smile

I agree - I don't think there is any need to change things if it is working for you.

When DD was a few months old I remember feeling rather inept as I wasn't putting her to bed at 7pm and then a dream feed at 11pm. Instead she would breastfeed all evening and eventually, sometime between 11pm and midnight she would stop feeding, fall into a deep sleep and we could all go to bed.

Our routine (of sorts!) gradually appeared when I started to wean at 6 months. Offering three meals a day kind of gave a structure to hang the rest of the day around. But even now (DD is 22 months old) things can get messed up if she has a particularly early/late nap which can mean "lunch" being served anywhere from 11am-3pm!

Whenever I doubt myself I tell myself that for thousands of years our ancestors didn't rely on routines/clocks etc to raise their children!

Agree with previous posters - if your baby is happy to fall asleep when she is tired wherever she is, that is a good thing in my book!

DS was also like this, and it was only when he reached 6mo that he started to nap with any regularity (of his own accord) - but it can change if we have a late start, etc. DH and I have agreed that starting in January we should have a bit more of a routine, but that is more just to be sure we can fit everything in during the day - it is hard to fit mealtimes in around naps and BFing at the moment, when they are all over the place! He is 8mo now.

Only change things if you feel they are not working for you, not just because others do differently smile

Spuddybean Sun 30-Dec-12 19:24:35

Oh thank god! I thought i was the only one. DS is 15wks old and just sleeps whenever he is tired and lays on the nearest sofa or on me till he wakes. In the evening he tends to be awake till midnight then sleeps in bed with me till 3ish for a feed then sleeps till 7. He cat naps on and off in the day.

We are the only ones from our nct group who do not have a routine and don't have a baby who sleeps from 7-7.

helenlynn Sun 30-Dec-12 19:48:30

ARE YOU MAD? If the baby will sleep "wherever and whenever" and you can still go out in the evening then for heaven's sake DON'T CHANGE ANYTHING! grin

teacher123 Sun 30-Dec-12 20:47:43

We had no feeding routine at all until we started weaning as I bf on demand and ds was a monster who fed every hour and a half till i started weaning him! We however had to create a sleeping structure quite early on as DS will not sleep anywhere apart from his cot, his car seat or his buggy. There was never any dozing off on the sofa, or sleeping in his Moses basket beside us downstairs in the evenings. He would just wail and wail and wail with over tiredness, it was awful. So I am envious! Go with what suits you!

bigkidsdidit Sun 30-Dec-12 20:50:17

Depends if or when you're going backto work I think. I went back at 6mo so DS needed to have a vague routine for the childminder and needed to wake up at 7am.

If you're not going back fr ages or at all don't bother smile

MissCoffeeNWine Mon 31-Dec-12 06:06:32

I'm back at work in six weeks when the baby is 22 weeks but I've already done several test days and we seem to manage OK. I'm lucky in not needing childcare.

I say it all feels a bit chaotic and I suppose it would be nice to have evenings back though I'm guessing most people wait until after 6 months for that?

Good point about meals giving more structure. We're a good ten weeks off weaning though then another several weeks after that I suppose until she has three regular meals.

I thought having a routine (a clue) or something (anything) was a good thing. Perhaps not? Is it really OK to be this clueless!

lightrain Mon 31-Dec-12 06:31:53

It depends what's going to work for you. If you jotted down when your baby slept over the next few days, I bet you'd find it was already in a loose routine anyway. I introduced a bath each night about 5/6 pm, from a few months old, as a sort of signal for bedtime and that has worked well as the baby has got older - DC now almost 3 and we don't bath every night but its a good way to wind down and DC is quite good with going to bed, etc.

Other than that, you can't really do anything to change what a small baby wants to do re. nighttime sleeping anyway! Sounds like you have it sorted if your DC will sleep anywhere! Those with strict routines who need baby's cot and a pitch dark room most likely have babies that are a bit more tricky to get to sleep!

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