Please help...trying to work out what next move is, feel helpless with 9 month old DS sleeplessness!

(86 Posts)
welshbetty77 Mon 02-Jun-14 07:18:36

Hello...first post on here but not sure where else to turn to. Ds who is 9 months old has never been a great sleeper...he's NEVER slept through the night (yawn!) however recently, this last week things have taken a turn for the (even) worse and I'm finding things impossible. Firstly, he has a really bad cough and cold at the moment which I know is adding to difficulties but still, I'll explain.
'Routine' is something like this, tea at 5.30 (before he was poorly he was eating really well), a little play, in the night garden at 6.20 ( just on in background whilst he plays with his dad on his mat...I thought perhaps music etc may start to become familiar with bedtime) bath at 6.50 for approx ten minutes, pyjamas then book in room and breastfeed to sleep (I know, I know!). Firstly he starts to 'kick off' being dried and laid on change mat for nappy and pyjamas, we just sort of work through this with songs/chatting/ musical mobile etc, whatever it takes to get through. Usually I'd be able to feed him to sleep put him in cot, there may be a few wake ups which my partner could settle him for, then I'd feed him when he woke through the night, up to four times. I know this sounds bad but I wasn't entirely unhappy with this, he would feed for a relatively short time and I'd be able to put him back into cot asleep. He'd wake at about 5/5.30 at which point I'd bring him into bed with us and he'd feed on and off until we got up...sometimes we'd lie in til 8.30/9 depending on how tired I was!
But recently things have taken a whole new turn for the worst..his bedtime is a lot more difficult, feeding to sleep doesn't work as quickly anymore, I usually try to pull him off the breast at which point he wakes a little and I pop him in cot to shush pat him to sleep, sometimes this works, but now more often than not he pushes himself up and sits up crying, won't be placed back to lying down again and crying escalates until I pick him up and start feeding/rocking/walking/pacing again. Sometimes I'm in there an hour before he's down, at which point he'll usually wake again after 60/90 minutes again and need resettling. My partner goes in, usually tries to settle in cot (difficult as he's screaming, rolling around and sitting up etc) then more often than not I have to take over and end up feeding again. Each time this happens the more difficult he is to get back in cot, to the point that he's been in bed with me these last few nights and pretty much feeding nonstop, just so that I can get some zzzz's. Co sleeping with us both is now impossible, he is big and likes to be ON me which usually results in me balancing on about a millimetre of bed space and not actually sleeping at all, at least with dp not in bed I can move ds across bed frequently, until he decides to snake over again smile.
The thing is, I love the cuddles but it's getting to the point where I know it's not good for either of us anymore, this complete lack of consistent sleep, and to be honest the whole thing is feeling wild and out of control now...I don't know where to start to fix it. Dp thinks we should sometimes let him cry more before we go in to settle (but knows nothing about the technicalities of any 'sleep training' -cc methods of which I'm totally not into anyway) Oh and I should mention, he's not easily 'cuddled' either, arches away, kicks legs out pushes away, all resulting in waking himself up further!i ACTUALLY don't know what to do other than keep bringing him into bed with me every night, which I don't what to do for the foreseeable as it's not fair on dp having the sofa bed every night! Ds is still poorly at the moment but I just know is getting into a bad habit and when he's better will want to keep on sharing my bed! HELP.....where on earth do I bloody start?! sad

sososotired Thu 12-Jun-14 19:06:39

GeorgieJo I have no magic answer and as you can see from this thread my DS is not that good at sleeping and his 10 months next week!

What I can say is that dropping his 3am feed was hard but made a massive difference and also teaching him to fall asleep in his bed at bed time which is hit and miss some nights I put him down and walk out and he just goes off and tonight I've been sitting next to his bed for 30 minutes waiting for him to drop off but since we've made those changes on a good night he only wakes once smile

I did see a HV at baby clinic today who said babies often struggle to sleep when they are learning a new skill, we are learning to crawl and stand up which may explain our 2 sleepless nights!!

Don't give up and try to be consistent it helps the baby to know what to expect!

GeorgieJo Thu 12-Jun-14 15:28:43

New to this thread - but have an 8 month old who is going through some of the same issues: multiple nighttime wake ups, really angry crying (and kicking his legs on the mattress) if I don't immediately pick him up and feed him back to sleep, plus starts the day between 5 and 530am.

I am shattered!

Realise I am part of the problem because I am not consistent - will often give in and feed, or take him into bed with me on a really bad night. Just have no strength to do anything else at 1/2/3/4am...

Hoping that someone will provide the magic answer!

sososotired Wed 11-Jun-14 06:19:47

Last night was terrible!!! He did so well with only 1 wake up for ages now, then last night he woke up so many times he ended up sleeping with me from 11-3 then popped him in his own bed and he slept till 5 then till 6 sad I'm so tired. And I start back at work full time on Monday I was hoping that he would be sleeping by now! sad sad sad

sososotired Tue 10-Jun-14 16:51:15

How is everyone getting on?

sososotired Mon 09-Jun-14 10:04:17

Thanks beccajoh!! He gets up between 5 and 5;45 so I tried his naps at 9:30 he likes just one nap after lunch! I thought I would try giving him a bottle at 10 and the. Nap at 10:30/11 and just let him sleep as long as he likes hoping for 2/3 hours?? And then lunch after that.

beccajoh Mon 09-Jun-14 09:17:44

She still has a two hour nap, 12.30-14.30.

beccajoh Mon 09-Jun-14 09:17:01

waking up not work up!

beccajoh Mon 09-Jun-14 09:16:25

What time is he napping versus what time work up? At that age my daughter transitioned to one longer nap at lunch time 2-3 hours, but she had to be in bed no later than 4.5 hours after she first woke or she got horribly overtired. She was usually up at 7am, so I did lunch stupidly early at 10.45 and then she was asleep by 11.30. More often than not she was asleep by 6.30pm for the night (she didn't STTN though). The early bed time definitely helped her not get too over tired. Sleep begets sleep. Even now at 23m she's often asleep by 7pm and sleeps until at least 7am. I've noticed on days where she's overtired she sleeps worse and will often wake up early the following morning.

That's what works for her, anyway...

sososotired Mon 09-Jun-14 09:01:26

Experiencing something new, DS is throwing MASSIVE tantrums when I try to put him down for a nap regardless of being rocked in his pushchair or being put in bed awake. Arching his back going red in the face and screaming??? Anyone ever experience this if so what did you do?

riskit4abiskit Mon 09-Jun-14 09:01:07

Hello. Soso you are doing brilliantly and I am green with envy! Took two feeds to get asleep last night then up at 3, 5,up for the day at 7. Also needed white noising when stirred before 12.

I also keep giving up and bringing ds into my bed but his little chubby legs are so squeeeee I just have no resistance. sad

If you have any questions about supply I heartily recommend the breastfeeding support network phone line I called them for the first time yesterday and the lady was fab and very knowledgeable.

sososotired Mon 09-Jun-14 07:06:14

How did every one get on last night?

We had a ok night 7-2:30 bottle refused to settle so he came to bed with me popped him on his bed at 4 fast asleep and woke at 5:30 smile

welshbetty77 Sun 08-Jun-14 22:20:23

Thanks smartie that's good to know, I'm sure the comfort and habit is more me than him to be honest! wink

Smartiepants79 Sun 08-Jun-14 22:11:39

I dropped to mornings and evenings only and then just bedtimes at the end.
My supply did not seem to be affected at all. My DDs never seemed to feel that there wasn't enough. At some point they are no longer really feeding for food just comfort and habit.

welshbetty77 Sun 08-Jun-14 21:10:03

Ooh, also ladies, interested to know from those of you who've dropped the night feeds but still breastfeed in morning and night...did you find it has affected your supply at all? Am keen to keep feeding him myself in morning and night for as long as possible so unsure wether I'm better off keeping my one feed during the night to do this...? TIA

sososotired Sun 08-Jun-14 20:30:33

avocado good luck for dropping that feed, we were met with a lot of resistance but only lasted a few night smile
With regards to putting your LO in bed with you I found that if it's every now and then he doesn't fuss the next night if he has to stay in his room I just needed to break the habit first!

Tonight was hard for us! DS was unhappy all day I think he is teething! So when it came to bed time he was screaming and arching his back... I ended up lying in his bed till he fell asleep!! I'm hoping for a good night though!!

Good luck to everyone!

welshbetty77 Sun 08-Jun-14 20:25:34

Hi ladies! Wow, looks like we really are all getting somewhere hey? My little bubs went down awake tonight without crying at all, for the first time!?! He tried to get up in his cot and rolled around for a bit but definitely went to sleep quicker and NO CRYYYINNNNG! Wahoo! I'm still feeding once a night, usually around 3am, then wake up is usually around 5am, at which point my will and resolve is as tired as I am, and I bring him into bed with me for (delicious!) cuddles and we usually go back to sleep til 7/7.30ish! I'm definitely tweaking and playing with bedtimes....optimum time at the mo seems to be between 6.50-7.10pm. I think day naps are getting slightly better too, but honestly think he doesn't need any longer than 40 mins-1 hour in the afternoon as well as the morning, anyone else like this?

avocadoadvantage Sun 08-Jun-14 08:25:03

Sounds good Soso. I'm not sure about solving early waking. We've not yet added that to our list of sleep woes. wink

Bed at 8.30 as short nap in car until 6. Woke at 12 and 3 to feed and up at 7:40.

If this continues I might try knocking the 12 feed on the head and see if we can just have the 3am wake. Also I guess I'll need to be stricter about going back in her cot at 3am but it's just sooo much easier to take her to bed to feed! (Lazy mama alert!)

sososotired Sun 08-Jun-14 05:55:44

Well done avocado I like following sleep cues smile and the sound of a relaxing bath my DS loves his bath but I don't think it's relaxing he splashes and turns stands up giggles smile

We've done brilliantly last night smile went to bed at 7 woke at 2:30 for a feed and up for the day at 5:30 so no nice lay ins for me but atleast he started sleeping nice long stretches!!
So far blacking out his room has no effect smile

avocadoadvantage Sat 07-Jun-14 23:27:55

Another decent night. We decided to look for her sleep cues more rather than trying to force a 7pm bedtime as noticed she often goes off at 8 whenever we begin.

Last night relaxed bath, boob and story routine then a lovely cuddle and into the cot where she snuggled down and went to sleep at 9pm. Woke at 12 and 3 for feeds. Came into bed at 3am and woke at 7 but smiled at me and went back to sleep until 7:45am. Lovely lie in! Hehe

She went down brilliantly at 8ish tonight and is still asleep.. Fingers crossed :-)

How are you all getting on?

riskit4abiskit Sat 07-Jun-14 23:13:16

Avacado I agree with you about not letting them cry. My mum keeps telling me 'its the only way' but as soon as babybiskit even squeaks in the day she says 'oh he wants his mummy!' And hands him over for a cuddle!

Yesterday we put a blanket over top of curtains to try and block more light out. Dont know if its having any effect

catyloopylou Sat 07-Jun-14 19:01:50

sososo I'll be watching with interest!

sososotired Sat 07-Jun-14 13:47:15

Catyloop as you can see from my posts I have an early riser, and he is ready for the day when he wakes at 5 non of this I will feed and go back to sleep or go in my bed nonsense smile I've been thinking that maybe it's the fact that it gets light so early so will be blocking out all light with foil for a few days as a test!! This morning doesn't count due to our horrific night last! But I will post my findings smile

catyloopylou Sat 07-Jun-14 10:59:45

Really glad I've seen this thread. DS2 is just 9 months and I'm struggling with early wake ups, from 5am. Anything after 6am feels like a lie in.

He usually goes down ok between 7.30 and 8pm (I'm working on getting this earlier but struggle with DS1 3 years to see to as well when DH is late home) after bath, breastfeed and cuddles. He usually feeds to sleep despite my best efforts to keep him awake long enough for a good feed. The last week he's been waking at 9.30pm, grouching then crying and only once have I been able to resettle him without feeding.

I was hoping to cut out his 10.30pm dreamfeed but I don't want to do that while he's waking so soon after putting down. He is in our room and probably will be for another few months till we can move him into his own room.

When he wakes at 5ish he quickly gets upset if I don't pick him up immediately and I don't want him crying too long incase it wakes DS1. I then take him into bed for a feed and occasionally we doze for a bit, then up at 7 for the day.

During the day he has 2 naps, one around 9.30 or 10am, then another at 3pm. Depending on what we're doing and playgroup pickups etc one nap will be 1.5 hours and the other around 45 minutes. He doesn't like napping in his cot but will in the car or buggy if out. Of course, that is if DS1 doesn't wake him up to play!

does anyone have any suggestions for trying to encourage him to wake up later in the morning? I'm feeling so tired at the moment I end up being a real grump which isn't fair for DS1, who was the most amazing sleeper from really young so never had to do anything.

sososotired Sat 07-Jun-14 07:15:19

What a night!! He woke very upset at 2 & 4 took an hour and a half to settle him again at 4 with a bottle etc and he woke up again at 6:15 sad I feel like I've had a night on the town sad!

How was everyone else's night?

sososotired Sat 07-Jun-14 00:02:18

Riskit I ended up with him lying on my chest in bed so I just felt if he moans in right there so he's not lonely or scared smile did also give him a nice dose of paracetamol incase it's teeth! And fingers crossed he's been asleep for 30 mins or so with no moaning!!

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