Newborn baby doesn't sleep at all at night- to co sleep not?

(26 Posts)
Tweet2tweet Mon 15-Apr-13 13:31:57

Hi there
Have been home 4 nights with little darling and although I am so happy that she is here safely, sleep is becoming a real downer. She sleeps some during the day but basically is awake from 9pm until 4am. At 4am I am so exhausted that she goes to sleep in my arms whilst I am in a chair until 5/6ish.
However last night I tried feeding her lying down whilst DH was in spare room and we both fell asleep. She seemed to be totally settled and slept on and off from 12-6, with bf in between.
So should I take this approach for the next few weeks? MW says a big no no and I'm making a rod for my back and dd will never go down in her own bed if I don't stop this now. However after a quick google general view seems to be this is good approach and baby will go down in own bed after if you make sure you don't co sleep for months and months.
Has anyone done this? How did it work out for you? Also is a co sleep crib worth thinking about??
We didn't co sleep with dc1 but dd2 seems a lot more in need of hugs and I don't want to deprive her of closeness.

SanneSannes Mon 15-Apr-13 14:33:17

Congratulations with your baby!!

I don't agree that you are making a rod for your own back when baby is so tiny. I would do whatever works for you in these early days and whatever enables you to get some sleep too!

Our DC2 is now 7 mo, happily falls asleep by herself and wakes up once for a nightfeed which I think is fine at that age. She was very attached to me/my boob in the first months so we ended up co-sleeping for several weeks initially (never did this with DC1 either!) and also had a couple of weeks when she would only sleep on me (which I found very hard as I was not able to sleep then as too scared that something could happen...) As co-sleeping did never really work for me (loved having her close to me but could never sleep myself that way) we very gradually moved her from me into Sleepyhead (she hated mosesbasket and I liked the sleepyhead as you can put it between you and your DP in your bed as well as anywhere else plus baby seemed to love it), then into cot and into own room when she was 6mo. No issues and no tears but when I say gradually I mean this whole process took months.

Congratulations on your new baby.

Cosleeping is fab - it's a shame it's not promoted more here, it's normal in most places for children to sleep with their parents.

Can you pull the Moses Basket close to the bed so that you're in close physical proximity? We side-car attached a cot bed to our bed. It meant I could just roll over to feed, and everyone had their own space.

Your MW is speaking out of her arse - babies are designed to sleep close to their mother, it's how humans have lived for thousands of years. The idea of keeping a baby separate from its parents at night time is a very recent thing.

RainDancer Mon 15-Apr-13 18:45:29

I had no intention to co-sleep, until I realised that my DD simply would not go to sleep in her crib or carrycot! After a week or two of pacing the floor all night, a midwife at the breastfeeding clinic told me I would never get any sleep unless I co-slept! So I did for a few weeks to save my sanity (although I never slept that well - I think some people are happier co- sleeping than others). Then, despite owning a lovely John Lewis swinging crib ( now redundant!) I hired an NCT bed nest which she has been in ever since (I definitely recommend it). She is 17 weeks now and sleeping better all the time. Do what you need to and don't worry about rods for backs, that midwife is talking nonsense. My LO does things differently every single week and is definitely not forming habits this young. Good luck!

Tweet2tweet Mon 15-Apr-13 19:16:40

Thanks so much everyone for tips and advice. I feel a lot better, it's good to know that you have all co slept with good results. I saw the NCT bedside crib but read a review that said it doesn't sit flush with a wooden bed, only a divan.

I've pulled the Moses basket to be next to the bed. Sometimes I think that it's also the Moses basket at dc1 didn't seem to like it either. Anyway I'm going to go with what seems to work best. Will try crib a few times and then be if it's not happening.

Spem Mon 15-Apr-13 19:58:15

My now 9 wo did just this and I gave in and let her cosleep which saved my sanity for a few weeks but wasn't really what I wanted. I kept offering the Moses basket when I could be arsed and wasn't totally knackered and at 5 weeks she decided she liked it a lot better. She now sleeps in there EVERY night, all night from 7pm. I write this enjoying some peace with a glass of wine. Ignore yr MW, mine was more sensible, am sorry yours wasn't x

Splinters Mon 15-Apr-13 21:11:56

The phrase "making a rod" is a MASSIVE sign that the person saying it is totally talking out of her/his arse IME! New babies need to be close to their mothers, and you need sleep. My baby is nearly 8 weeks now and already going down in her basket most of the time, but having the spare bed so I could sleep with her was a lifesaver during the first month.

BlingLoving Mon 15-Apr-13 21:53:08

There's a strong theory that for the first 12 weeks the baby should be treated as if its still n your womb ie co sleeping is fine. We didn't co sleep a lot but I felt no guilt when we did. Do what works!

pooka Mon 15-Apr-13 22:00:16

This is an excellent thing to do!

I'm all for doing what will make life easier and the early weeks can be hellish, particularly when babies are at the stage where they haven't worked out night from day.

I had a bedside crib for dc2. He stayed in my bed/room until about 9 months. Was a super sleeper though. DC1 didn't co sleep and was very unsettled with colic. I wish I had co-slept. DC3, I used the bedside crib, but mostly for muslin/nappy/wipes storage!

Sparklyboots Mon 15-Apr-13 22:02:06

Oo, we co-sleep and we really love it. DS is 2.3 now and we think it's a lovely thing, to crawl into bed next to him at night/ wake up with him. He's not the greatest sleeper but that's never been a massive problem cos he's right next to us and can be resettled very quickly. I'm not hugely concerned about the transition to his own bed, I reckon we could put in him one already to start the night, but it seems a bit pointless given that we're in a one-bedroomed flat. His Dsis is due to arrive in three weeks - just in case anyone had any concerns about marital relations...

OP, I know lots of co-sleepers, loads still doing it, many stopped when it was no longer convenient for them, everyone totally happy with their choice and no one feeling like they'd made 'a rod...'

Floweryhat Mon 15-Apr-13 22:03:27

Do you smoke?
Did you smoke in pregnancy?
Do you drink alcohol?
Do you take any drugs (prescription or illegal!)?

If the answer to the above is all no for both you and anyone else in the bed then the risks are not high for a breastfed baby.

Do you have a firm mattress?
Will baby be unable to roll out of bed or get trapped between bed and wall?

If yes to both, then again should be OK.

Baby should be dressed like you -overheating is the main risk. Ditch the duvet and use blankets, and keep baby's bedding separate.

Thought-through and planned for bedsharing is safer by far than risking falling asleep on a sofa or chair. That is the most high risk scenario.

Even if you intend to put the baby back after a feed, you may fall asleep so safer to set yourself up as if you intend to bedshare.

Some people ask their DH/DP to sleep elsewhere for a short while, as that might reduce the risk of overlaying and/or mum and baby find they sleep better without another person in the bed. DH/DP also may get better sleep that way!

Sparklyboots Mon 15-Apr-13 22:04:06

Oh, and as a side effect, he's never resisted going to bed, sometimes he even announces he's tired and it's time for bed. I think that this is co-sleep related, well, insofar as bed times have always been lovely cosy cuddly times...

dietcokeandwine Mon 15-Apr-13 22:05:47

Definitely cosleep for the moment, as long as you are following guidelines and doing it safely you and baby should be absolutely fine. 4 days old is still so tiny, it's kinder on both of you to go with what works for her for the moment. It is such an adjustment period for a newborn, everything is just so new, of course they just want to be kept close to their mothers!

And as for the 'rod for your own back' thing, it's rubbish, things change so much with small babies in the first few weeks. I coslept a fair amount with DS3 in the first few weeks, as I'd done with his two older brothers before him. It worked, it kept him calm, it helped me get some sleep. But I knew cosleeping long-term wasn't for us, so continued to try settling him into the moses basket for sleeps every few days, as well as letting him have some awake time in there as well. Gradually, he started to be happy to settle in the basket and the nights of cosleeping grew more infrequent.

I found that after six weeks things became a lot more predictable in terms of settling and now, at 11 weeks, he goes down in his big cot from 7pm-11pm and then transfers happily to the moses basket in our room after his 11pm feed. Generally tends to wake once in the night after that and feeds and settles straight back into basket till morning. But at 4 days he was much the same as your DD.

RainDancer Mon 15-Apr-13 22:22:22

Tweet, we have a wooden framed bed and the NCT bed nest works really well with it.

ratbagcatbag Mon 15-Apr-13 23:54:34

Reading this with interest desperation I have a four and half week old, we've struggled to settlem her in Moses basket due to reflux, and her choking when lying down, I've now got this under control with meds but she still has to be kept upright after every feed so falls asleep on me, when I try and settle her she wakes up, the past few nights I've fallen asleep with her in the crook of my arm but er are nowhere near set up for co sleeping and am worried sad

olivertheoctopus Tue 16-Apr-13 00:39:52

Good god, stick her in your bed and ignore any bullshit from MW about rods. You need to do what you need to do to survive and that's get some sleep. Don't sweat it.

BeCool Netherlands Tue 16-Apr-13 00:40:02

The rod thing is bullshit.

I co slept (and still do) with both dc. It's great - really worked for us and I got good sleeps.

Best advice I received is "babies are random" - especially for the first couple of months. Catch sleep when you can as wee ones aren't used to night and day for a while.

Congratulations smile

ClipClapClop Tue 16-Apr-13 00:59:32

Really good advice about co-sleeping, but to add something different to the mix, have you tried swaddling? We used one of those special Velcro swaddling blankets with DD, which made her feel like she was being held but meant I could put her down and get some decent sleep myself. Definitely worth trying whilst your LO is still tiny.

sparklekitty Tue 16-Apr-13 10:34:19

We have a metal framed bed and NCT bed nest fits perfectly, just a different way of attaching it.

We co-sleep for the same reasons, at 4 days old our DD refused to sleep anywhere else. My wonderful, amazing midwife suggested cosleeping to us. We're still doing it at 6.5mo

I have found it tricky getting her into her own cot/room but I think that has more to do with the fact that I have always fed DD to sleep so she's never learnt to self settle.

I would say go for it and enjoy it but later down the line (not now she's still weeny) make sure you teach her to self settle so you don't fall into the problems we have smile

plummyjam Tue 16-Apr-13 19:30:33

I did this for first 8 weeks with DD as she wouldn't go in her Moses basket without screaming to be picked up. It was brilliant and I felt so refreshed each morning (although a bit achy from lying very still so as not to roll on her). I am in the spare room on a double bed, DH in main bedroom.

Have reluctantly stopped as DD is a bit reflux and doesn't sleep well lying flat, but will now happily go in Moses basket propped up a bit next to bed. If I could have carried on co-sleeping I definitely would have done.

Tweet2tweet Thu 18-Apr-13 10:52:29

Thanks everyone for all of your helpful comments. I feel a lot better and dd is much more settled, she s allowing me to put her down in ram during day from time to time!

MrsHoarder Thu 18-Apr-13 11:03:08

ratbag if your LO is still tiny (ie not rolling) the most important things are to loose the duvet for blankets and to keep them well away from pillows or being able to get trapped anywhere and unable to breath. Also that they should be against a bf mother rather than the father.. If you have a few blankets lying around you might be able to sort all that out whilst LO is in the bouncy chair today.

ratbagcatbag Fri 19-Apr-13 01:23:32

Thanks mrs. We have a plan for tomorrow which involves a new reflux sleep wedge which hopefully will help and moving the big cot with us, she's happy on her own just likes sprawling and needs head propping up because of bad reflux, DH is in spare bed, dd is sprawled on his side, I've not got a blanket on me as room is 21.3c so I'm red hot anyway. smile good tempory solution for tonight, but thanks to everyone for not making me feel awful, a lot of mw etc do not like co sleeping at all. smile

Sephy Mon 22-Apr-13 08:54:51

Not sure if this thread has died out now, but just wanted to ask some advice about co sleeping too.
I'm only 14 weeks pregnant, so plenty of timeti see how these things pan out, but I was really keen to get a bedside cot like the nct one after reading excellent reviews in here.
My MIL, who I know is just trying to help and do what's best, has said that it won't help our sleeping at all, as I'll still have to get out of bed every time s/he wakes up to feed as I'll need to change nappy. I'm quite anxious about the sleep side of things and really want to make things as easy as possible for me, DH and DC to get as much sleep as possible - would I be wasting my money on a co-sleeping cot or can they really help?

Obviously I'm pretty clueless so any advice appreciated!

MrsHoarder Mon 22-Apr-13 09:28:15

I've needed to change ds's nappy at night twice, he's 11mo. Changed it unnecessarily a few more times when he's been unsettled felt very silly one night when after spending 2 hours resettling I realised he had a dirty nappy

Did your mil use Terry nappies? Modern disposables can hold a lot of pee.

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