High Needs Baby Support Group (thread V)

(351 Posts)

A new thread for a new year! smile

The original thread was to support those of us with babies fitting the following criteria:

1. Feeds frequently daytime
2. Feeds frequently nighttime
3. Needs to be constantly held
4. Wont sleep alone
5. Hates the car seat/pram
6. Short naps

Some of our babies have grown out of some of those now, but we're still here to support each other through the sleepless nights and noisy car journeys and to offer hugs, chocolate and wine to anyone who's struggling.

So if that list sounds familiar then come and join us as we delight in our active, inquisitive, curious and restless babies or toddlers!

MeAndMyJoeNowHaveRowan Sat 05-Jan-13 11:24:45

Welcome to snuga I am new here too, well not new to mumsnet, been on for years since DS1 was a high needs screamer baby but I'm new to this thread! Ahh a caffine drip, this is what we all need! Or better still a sedative drip for our babies grin !

I went to bed after DS2 did last night and apart from a screaming fit at 10:30pm he actually slept til 7:30am!!!! shock Probably won't happen again but I really needed the sleep and so did he!

Littlemachine I think there must be more high needs/ difficult babies out there than people admit! I felt so alone when I had DS1. Now I know it will pass so it's not so hopeless feeling but it still seems so hard when I am around my 2 friend's placid babies whoi both have slept through sice 4 weeks and hardly murmer during the day. It's hard to not feel like a failure. If only some of my friend's had been through it too and would realise where I'm coming from instead of giving me 'normal baby' advice that would just NOT work for mine! I know they mean well so I just smile and nod but it's very isolating at times. your faebook friends are lucky to have you!

MeAndMyJoeNowHaveRowan Sat 05-Jan-13 11:26:46

typos fat fingers, small laptop sorry haha

MeAndMyJoe - I've said it before on here and I'll say it again. Your baby not sleeping doesn't make you a failure, nor does having a baby with a HN personality. They are both things that are totally out of your control - two of the few things, in fact, that as a parent of a baby, you can't control.

But I know that feeling.

And brilliant news on the sleeping!

MeAndMyJoeNowHaveRowan Sat 05-Jan-13 17:19:12

Thank you littlemachine it's good of you to remind me of this. Rationally I know you're right. There is not a single thing I could do differently, not a single thing I haven't tried to cheer up and settle both of my babies BUT it's so upsetting to see everyone else enjoying their children's babyhood and finding it all so magical while I am just bloody frazzled all the time and exhausted! I remember seeing my friends or people at baby groups with their happy babies drifting off to sleep on their laps, or playing on mats while I had DS1 attached to my boob to comfort him and when I wasn't feeding I was pacing around like a lunatic. He wouldn't ever let me just sit and enjoy him. Such a sad time which sounds horrible beause obviously I adore him but it was just hard work! Same is true of DS2. I have a little mantra I have been repeating to myself for the past year 'It gets better. I have done this before. I can do it again.'

I KNOW I can do it again but it doesn't stop me from being disappointed in having to do it again. Not that I am disappointed in having DS2 at all, it's just that I had hoped to enjoy it slightly more this time but it wasn't to be. sad

How's everyone's day been? We actually have had a pretty lovely day. DS2 is still snotty and seems tired but not overly crabby (for him anyway!). We took the boys to the museum and other than a little melt down from DS2 because I wouldn't let him have one of the plastic models from a display (but I suppose that's kind of normal behavour from a 1 year old) it was a good day. DS1 had fun making 3D models with card and a Roman mosaic thingy. DS2 seemed to want to be part of it which is hard when he just wants to shove everything in his mouth but he enjoyed fiddling with the odd baby safe bits. It's nice to have days where I feel like DS1 isn't suffering too much as a consequence of DS2.

Those with older kids how do you juggle it all? I seem to feel guilty all the time and still after a year I mourn my time with DS1 without feeling guilty for leaving DS2 or having a whinging DS2 on my lap!

I feel the same but I guess DD doesn't remember life before DS (she was 2.5 when he was born) so it's a little easier for me I think. I try to make time for her each day and sometimes leave DS with DH and take DD out somewhere. Even if it's just to the shops, so we can have a nice chat and she gets some 1:1 time. Is that an option?

A bit of a mixed day here. I weighed myself this morning and I've lost over 4lb this week smile (although I then celebrated by baking brownies hmm). But then this afternoon we gave away almost all of our newborn and 0-3m clothes to friends who are expecting their first baby in May. I know it's the right thing to do and I'm trying to view it as a cathartic thing, letting go and all that. But it's painful. sad

Natmu Sat 05-Jan-13 21:02:12

Welcome MeAndMyJoe and Snug. I have DS1 who is 4.9 and was a 'normal' baby and DS2 who is 4 months and HN. I find it really hard to cope with two and feel utterly guilty about neglecting DS1 all the time. He absolutely adores his brother but has found it very difficult to adjust to having him around. He started reception 2 weeks after DS2 was born so he's had massive changes in his little life this year. I'm just as crabby and short tempered as you MeAndMyJoe and have the same attacks of the guilt. I had PND after DS1 despite the fact that he was the most perfect baby anyone could wish for. I've had it again this time but coped a bit better amazingly. I think I was just ready for it this time.

Until I had DS2 I'd never even heard of HN babies but it has completely changed my idea of parenting. Babywearing has been the life saver for me. I'm just praying my back holds out and DS2 enjoys it long term grin

Natmu Sat 05-Jan-13 21:03:03

I'll help you eat those brownies if you like Joyful grin

Back to work today. I'm dreading leaving DS. He's been so good during the holidays and made some big steps. Small steps to most people but big for him, like holding his arms out to his uncle.
I know he's going to go downhill once he's back in nursery. It makes me feel so guilty.

ticklemyboobsofsteel Mon 07-Jan-13 10:15:50

Aww Little <hugs>. I know it's hard but try not to feel guilty. Not that I can really talk. I went back to work full time in March last year (mostly at home, but in the office at least once a week) and I still feel guilty every day, even though I'm lucky enough to be around DS while working at home. It's utter shit <prays for lottery win>

I hope your day goes by swiftly Little - DS will be back in your arms again before you know it.

We had a lovely weekend - my mum came up on Saturday for a visit and we took DS swimming and out for a meal yesterday. As always, it goes too fast though. DH is taking DS to soft play this morning. I know that I'm working and providing a wage for the family, but I just feel like shit every morning when they leave together. I feel like I should be the one taking care of him/taking him places. I know we made the right decision for me to keep working with such a wonderful flexible opportunity as I have been given, but some days I just feel so blue sad

Thanks tickle. I really hope I can give up work in the near future. I hate teaching now anyway, and it just feels so wrong handing DS over.
The Christmas holidays have just confirmed how much of a negative impact nursery has on him, even though it's a wonderful nursery and he's only there for 4 hours a day.

Natmu Mon 07-Jan-13 19:29:18

<hugs> to both of you. I'm still on mat leave atm but lack of money will force me back at the end of May and I'm utterly dreading it. I'm a teacher too Little. I don't know about you but I find I end up resenting all the time I'm putting into other people's children instead of my own. How old are your DC's? How old were they when you both had to start work again? Returning to work was what tipped me over the edge with the pnd last time although I was doing a different job then.

Snugabugz Mon 07-Jan-13 20:09:56

I know what you mean Meandmyjoe about looking at other babies and wondering how come others have it so easy.

Spent the weekend with my cousin whose 12 week old sleeps from 7pm to 8am whilst mg six month old is up every two hours. I went to bed at 8pm whilst everyone else had a lovely evening together.

I must be so boring moaning on about how he wakes so often but it's hard to talk about 'normal' topics, must try harder.

All my family were very supportive but made me sad to miss out just 'cos I am so tired I can barely function.

ticklemyboobsofsteel Mon 07-Jan-13 20:37:33

Ta for the hugs Natmu. DS was 8 months when I started back - DH took the final month of my statutory mat leave as paternity leave. I'm really lucky to have such flexible employers, and see DS throughout the day when DH brings him home for lunch, etc, but I find myself worrying constantly as to how long it will last - so many redundancies and restructurings over the last year or so.

Thankyou Natmu. My day was actually lovely, I was so proud of DS I nearly cried. When we walked into his nursery room he put his arms out to his key worker and didn't cry when I left smile and I had a nice, calm, teaching afternoon with my nursery class.
I went back when DS was 8 months old. The nursery he goes to is onsite, as we have a sure start in our school, but it's not attached to my nursery. I set it up, and I know the staff very well, so it's a best case scenario, nursery-wise. I'm lucky to be part time too. I found the first 4 weeks horrendous, and then when DS ha virus after virus and became doubly HN. He's improved so much in the last 3 weeks, I just really hope being apart from me doesn't undo it.

Natmu Tue 08-Jan-13 03:36:00

Well done DS Little! That's great that he felt so confident going back. You never know it might last smile. I'm part time too doing 3 full days a week. I'm lucky because when I go back MIL will be looking after him.

Had a bit of a discussion with DH about him tonight. We usually read DS1 a story each before bed if we're both here and usually DS2 is asleep in my arms for this but tonight I just felt like I wanted to give DS1 a proper cuddle and my full attention. Of course DS2 had other ideas and ended up working himself into a real state every time I tried to put him down so bedtime was ruined for DS1 again. So then I start questioning myself and wondering again whether all this attachment parenting for DS2 is the right thing to do because he utterly dictates life around here and I am getting resentful and DS1 is suffering. I guess I was looking for a bit of reassurance and a confidence boost from DH but he said if it was up to him he would do cc. He thinks DS1 is being pushed aside too much and that it's not fair to ask MIL to look after DS2 when I go back to work if he is still behaving in this way. Now I'm all over the place mentally. I just never seem to have any confidence in what I'm doing.

Sorry for another ramble.

Does DS2 see your MIL often Natmu? I was so worried about DS starting nursery, because he is so attached to me, but after an initial horrendous week there he settled well enough for me to be happyish.

Is your MIL happy to hold him as much as he needs etc? It's so hard having to leave them, no matter what.

Hmm a hard discussion to have with your DH. Are you against cc, or do you just not think it will work for DS2?
Will DS2 settle with your DH while you do story time and you could alternate?

You're parenting the way your DS needs you to. He needs the attachment at the moment so that's why you're doing it. It doesn't mean he'll rule the roost indefinitely, because you'll still be able to put behavioural boundaries in when he's developmentally ready.

I never intended to be an attachment parent. I was willing to give bf a go for the first few months, but I never thought I'd co-sleep or 'baby wear' or be an extended bfer. I totally don't fit that profile! But I had to adapt my ideas of parenting to suit DS and his needs.

You'll know what's best for you all.

Nightmoves Tue 08-Jan-13 21:39:21

natmu having very similar discussions with my DH at the mo. so difficult. Doubly worse by fact that DS seems to have hit 9 month sleep regression, I didnt think it could get bloody worse! Now in addition to waking all the time he is taking ages to settle even with feeding him and lying beside him, and up during the night despite cometely co-sleeping!!! We are all exhausted and I have nothing left. Feel DH thinks I am making excuses for him when I explain about HN and sleep regressions. I wonder too if I am, but for me cc just doesn't feel right. I am seriously considering forking out for sleep constant when he is 1 or when I feel ready, as just feel all my confidence is gone and don't want to wreck DS by doing something wrong. Oh the joys... And I don't even have any more DC!! Will be interested to know what you decide to do.

Natmu Wed 09-Jan-13 03:46:35

He sees MIL at least twice a week and I left him with her last night (although it was only for about half an hour). He was very grumpy as he'd hardly slept all day but she coped very well with his screaming and he was smiling at her when I got back. I think she probably will hold him quite a bit although she prefers to stick them in the pushchair and go out walking. I don't think she'd just let him cry.

Reassuring words Little thank you. I just wish I could have faith in my decisions. I have never tried cc to it's full extent. With DS1 when he was a bit older, he got into a habit of waking up for cuddles so I used a pick him up, settle, put him down, he'd start to cry and we'd repeat method. It worked well for him because he never got distressed but he eventually got the message that nighttime was for sleeping (but then he was sleeping through the night by 10 weeks so easier all round really). I think I would be against cc and I'm also very doubtful that it would even work with DS2.

Nightmoves I'm sure my DH thinks the same re making excuses. I got him to read a bit of Sears and Sears about sleeping and cc etc but he just said 'well I could show you a dozen books which argue thd opposite point of view. It's just an opinion.' Ultimately I don't think I'm capable of putting him through cc and I don't want to inflict the sleepless nights on DS1 either because it's an all or nothing kind of approach and he would keep us all awake if I let him scream.

Ho hum. The pitfalls of parenthood eh? Hope you are both having a decent night anyway. Good to talk all this out. Helps bolster my confidence. Thanks.

MeAndMyJoeNowHaveRowan Thu 10-Jan-13 11:55:04

Arrrrrrgh!!! DS2 has cried and whined all day long. What the hell is going on?? I know DS1 was the same but surely it's not normal for a 1 year old to still be so unsettled??! Sorry all me me me but just wanted to vent.

Olivess Thu 10-Jan-13 13:55:38

Hi everyone. I'm starting to realise that I may have a HN baby! Actually I've suspected it for a while but the past few days has been awful. She's 12 weeks old. From the moment she was born she cried and cried - she wanted to be fed constantly. In fact the first night in hospital she did not settle at all - the midwife had to take her off me at 4am because she was so wound up, wanting to be fed and wouldn't be put down in the crib.

Her sleeping has been poor from the start, for the first few weeks she was unputdownable. She hated the Moses basket, pram, car seat. We have gradually got her used to the Moses basket and pram and she does sleep in both for short periods. We co- slept for a while to survive and that worked quite well but wasn't a long term solution for us. She hates the car seat and screams in it unless we time it perfectly when she may fall asleep.

The past week her sleep has completely gone to pot. She is sleeping for maybe 2 hours but often less, waking every hour or so. She will not self-settle and goes from a little grumble to full on crying in a matter of seconds. Last night was awful - she hardly slept and nor did we. She cried between 3 and 5. Then slept for 20 mins and then woke up again. I feel terrible, have had a cold/flu but can't catch up on any sleep which I need so desperately.

This morning we went to our baby massage class. I timed it really well so she had a nap before we went but it started half an hour later than I was told so she had half an hour of being delightful while we were waiting and then a total meltdown when it began. She screamed and screamed and i just felt so inadequate with all the other mother there with their calm, quiet babies. It took me 30 mins to rock her to sleep, we walked home and then she woke up straight away screaming and it took me another 30 mins to settle her again. I'm driving myself mad trying to work out how to improve her sleep but nothing seems to be working.

Sorry for the long post - just needed to get it off my chest and a bit of hand-holding really. She is such a gorgeous baby and can be so delightful and happy but the lack of sleep is really getting to me.

Natmu Thu 10-Jan-13 19:40:28

Welcome Olivess and don't worry MeAndMyJoe, I've had some meltdowns on here. It's the perfect place.

Olivess sorry to hear you're going through such a rough patch. Can I ask why co-sleeping didn't work for you? It's the only way either me or DS2 ever get any sleep and he's waking every couple of hours too.

Here's a hand to hold both of you. Hope you have better nights tonight. I live by Joyful's mantra now.....this too will pass.

Nightmoves Thu 10-Jan-13 19:50:58

Hi olivess. Sorry to hear you're having a rough time of it. You will get lots of commiseration and support here!! Your story brings back lovely memories of my DS screaming his head off at that age so you're not alone don't worry. I left a baby yoga class in tears and never went back and ditto with the massage. Although for us the sereneness of the activity was definitely a contributing factor - he needed something more engaging. Also with the pram etc. People used to say "oh wow you must be loving bring able to get out and about with him in the pram" and I would nod and smile when actually I was petrified and carried him screaming whilst pushing the pram on many occasions. He has settled a bit (now 9 months) and found a wee routine, albeit everchanging, which I can use to plan our activities and minimise unhappiness. Also co-sleeping has saved me in terms of sleep. And majorly adjusting my expectations, which MN and this thread have been great for. Hang in there.

<sneaks in>

<puts on fresh brew and leaves out tray of warm brownies>

Hi all and welcome Olivess! Sorry I've been mostly absent this week, the mental health demons are interfering with normal function. hmm I've been avoiding anything like social interaction unless it's via social media, when I can keep everyone at arm's length. I am lurking though, and send hugs to you all. smile

<sneaks back out again>

Natmu Sat 12-Jan-13 01:44:43

Ah Joyful love. Sending hugs right back at ya. Was wondering where you were hiding. Hope you can banish those demons back from whence they came and hastily.

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