Does my baby have a naturally late bedtime?

(30 Posts)
blueberrypudding Wed 11-Jun-14 21:46:04

My 11 week old has never settled at her 'bedtime' - we've tried for 7pm every night and she would fall asleep while we rocked her but five minutes after we put her down she'd wake back up again and scream. She can't self-settle and putting her down drowsy just makes her upset.

Cue rocking and repeat non-stop from 7pm till 10.30pm every night, when she just magically drops off and settles for her night sleep, whether or not she's had a late feed. She does wake every two/three hours but settles herself after feeds fairly quickly.

We've tried a bedtime routine (warm bath, big feed, rocking, white noise) and while that gets her down initially in five minutes she's up again! We've done this for two whole months and it's getting exhausting, especially now that she's really easily distracted and often ends up looking around and getting stimulated while we're rocking her.

We've tried waking her earlier in the morning but it hasn't improved her bedtime, just makes her crankier in the day (though it does mean she settles for naps in the car/pram quicker).

Do we just let her sleep at 10.30pm every night instead of trying non-stop to put her down? Surely she's not getting enough sleep? It also means we can't ever do anything in the evenings but pace about in a dark room trying to get her to bed.

Help! Any advice would be great.

jaggythistle Thu 12-Jun-14 07:04:28

Sounds normal to me.

Both mine were probably between 6 months and 1yo by the time they had a bedtime like that.

They just sat on my knee in the living room and bf and dozed at 11 weeks. smile

I had a wee bed in the living room to put then in when asleep, then they came through to the crib in our room when we went to bed.

If bf 'cluster feeding' on and of in the evening us very common

jaggythistle Thu 12-Jun-14 07:06:49

On and off even

Finola1step Thu 12-Jun-14 07:09:30

Sounds normal to me too.

Mine settled into a routine more from about 4 months. My ds always then settled down around 8:45. Now he is 6 and a half, he still falls asleep between half eight and nine most nights, even after a busy day at school. Thank goodness he's not an early riser.

NutellaLawson Thu 12-Jun-14 07:13:38

Sounds like my ds1. His natural bedtime was 9pm. It didn't matter whether we tried to put him down at seven or at ten to nine. He wouldn't settle to sleep until 9pm. So we
Learned we could either take 2 hours to get him to sleep or ten minutes. We chose the latter,.

He is now 2 and we have managed to get his bedtime to between 8 and 9. He wakes 12 hours later. I'm really really glad he's not a 6am waker. I'm sure his late bedtime is the reason for it. .

evertonmint Thu 12-Jun-14 07:22:30

Normal. We fought DC1 on bedtime thinking he needed to be down by 7 because that's what babies do and it was hard. With DC2, we couldn't be bothered and she stayed up with us cluster feeding or snoozing and would settle between 10 and 11. Around 3-4m she would start dropping off around 9ish for the night and by about 6m she was in a 7ish routine and that's when we started settling her upstairs after her bath. We did bath and pyjamas routine at 7 for her with DS from early on
but would just take her back downstairs with us.

NormHonal Thu 12-Jun-14 07:27:19

Yes, normal, both of my two DCs did similar, so we just kept them downstairs with us until they were ready to fall asleep.

Even now they are older, they have both resisted all (numerous!) attempts at earlier bedtimes and we have settled upon 8pm as a time that works.

deepbluetr Thu 12-Jun-14 07:39:41

Same here- no bedtime at 11 weeks- plenty time for that.

I would just brestfeed and cuddle, chat to OH or watch TV until it was my bedtime and take baby upstairs with me.

Nocomet Thu 12-Jun-14 08:02:33

11 weeks is way too early for a child's bedtime.

Not that DD1 ever understood that Children go to bed at 7-7.30 pm.

But at 8pm she would settle like a charm.

beela Thu 12-Jun-14 08:40:13

11 weeks is much too early to try and force it. Just go with it and she will get there eventually.

boopdoop Thu 12-Jun-14 10:43:55

My DS is 12 weeks and we do bath early (7ish), then feed, doze and play etc downstairs dyeif which time I eat my dinner, and then he has a bottle at 9.30pm (bf rest of time) and then goes to sleep between 10.30-11. Looking forward go when he goes down at 7-8, as would like my evenings back, but just haven't been able to get him down any earlier.

boopdoop Thu 12-Jun-14 10:44:23

*during not dyeif!!

blueberrypudding Thu 12-Jun-14 17:29:18

Thanks everyone - someone introduced me to the Gina Ford book and I was going mad thinking that I had the only baby that didn't magically go to sleep at 7pm and sleep through the night! It's good to know it's more common than books like to make out.

Do you think I should let her sleep in later then, if she only goes to sleep properly at 10.30pm? She does wake naturally at around 7/8am but I'm never sure if it's just for a feed or if she's actually properly awake. We've got her up then but at around nine she just gets really cranky as if we've been keeping her awake. On weekends sometimes we lie in and I just bring her into bed with us and side feed her and she sometimes goes back to sleep until 11am so I'm wondering if her circadian rhythm just goes 11 - 11.

evertonmint Thu 12-Jun-14 17:35:07

Let her get up at 7 or so. Mine always wanted a nap about 2 hours after waking and kept this nap until they were around 12 months, so being tired and cranky around 9ish is normal, and not a sign that her bedtime is too late. The bit where she says babies often need a nap after about 2 hours awake was the only bit of that Gina Ford book that was ever useful to me!!!

teacher54321 Thu 12-Jun-14 23:01:13

Children are all so different. DS went to bed at 5.45pm for a year! Couldn't get him to settle at 7 for love nor money-turns out he was overtired. He's now 2 and a bit and is usually in bed somewhere between 6.45-7.15 depending on how tired he is/we are.

mrsmugoo Fri 13-Jun-14 04:41:45

If you get her up at 7am by 9am she would be ready for a nap at 11 weeks.

My 13 week old is waking about 6:45 most days and takes his first nap by 8.

lucy101 Fri 13-Jun-14 05:07:05

My 11 week old falls asleep around 9.30/10. She cluster feeds until then and tends to wake a couple of times in the night at the same times. Her day routine is slightly less predictable as it depends what we do. I haven't attempted any routine.

Lucky29 Fri 13-Jun-14 19:16:25

Exactly the same as my 11 week old, I wouldn't pace around in a dark room alone all evening. Just carry on as normal, sit in the living room watching telly as previous posters have said! My DD falls asleep for her long night sleep between 10-11.

Sleepysheepsleeping Fri 13-Jun-14 19:19:37

Yep this happened to me with my third, took til about 12 weeks to settle by 11pm and then gradually came forward as she became more aware that daytime was daytime and night was quiet and dark, she had a 8pm bedtime by 4 months.
My eldest two got the 7/8pm bedtime thing by about 6 weeks. Just keep keeping it quiet and dark (I did watch telly in dark room or use iPad etc) any tricks to get to sleep in evening use, I ended up with DD3 strapped to me all evening in a wrap sling for several weeks in order to get an evening of quiet, and you might find she starts settling earlier of her own accord

Spotsondots Fri 13-Jun-14 19:25:49

My DS didn't have a 'normal' bedtime until he was 6 months old. He just came down with us until he passed out at around 11pm. It gradually got earlier as he got older.

Don't worry about bedtime this young - they're little and cuddly in the evenings for such a short time in retrospect. Plus most babies haven't read Gina Ford (or any of the other baby books for that matter) except for my DSIL's babies who apparently both read it in the womb grin

Enjoy your little one smile

Sillylass79 Sun 15-Jun-14 01:08:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhizzPopBang Sun 15-Jun-14 10:06:00

We had the same situation up til about 3 months, bed around 7pm and constant not settling and re-waking til about 10/10.30. I'd been so hung up on her not being overtired she'd been having an afternoon nap too close to bedtime, as soon as we kept her up a bit longer from nap to bedtime she settled much better. Can't remember the exact times, but probably about a 2 hour gap.

fledermaus Sun 15-Jun-14 10:12:28

Mine only stayed awake for about an hour, 90 minutes at a stretch, between naps at that age. If I woke them at 7am they'd be back in bed by 8am.

10-11pm is a pretty normal bedtime for a very young baby. Many are still cluster feeding at that age, so the norm would probably be breastfeeding/dozing in your arms on the sofa between 7-11 and then to bed when you go.

Bed time gradually gets earlier as their awake time between naps gets longer and their daytime sleep consolidates into 3/4 longer naps rather than lots of shorter naps.

fledermaus Sun 15-Jun-14 10:14:25

Mine have also needed way more sleep and much more frequent feeds than Gina Ford would ever allow for.

CuteLittleToes Mon 16-Jun-14 05:45:23

I never understood this obsession with 7pm bedtime. I've never even heard if it until I came to the UK. Ok, it does make sense if you have other DCs and have to get them to school/nursery, but if you don't have to get up for anything in the mirn

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