13 Month Old with Extreme Sleep Issues

(13 Posts)
KitKat36 Wed 19-Oct-16 04:28:23

I need help. We're going through some pretty terrible sleep and, to be honest, if we don't fix it soon, I think we'll divorce.

My lovely 13 month old has had four bugs in the last month and since being on holiday, starting nursery and contracting the first has given up on sleep in his cot.

We get him in there and asleep by 7:30/8 and generally he falls asleep on his own (no rocking or feeding) and he sleeps anything from 90 minutes to four hours then the fun usually begins. He wakes every 45 - 90mins and won't be resettled in the cot.

Sometimes he won't be settled at all and one of us is then stuck sitting up with him. Usually my husband as we're weaning him off his last breastfeed feed. I should say he has been supremely unbothered by losing breastfeeding; the guy seems happy as long as he gets some milk, the source or the type seem irrelevant.

What else?
- He eats solids fine and got his monster appetite back a couple of days ago.
- No obvious allergy symptoms though we think he had silent reflux as a baby.
- lots of cuddling and playing after nursery to reassure him.
- put him carrier while I get his bath ready to help him wind down and settle
- we night weaned him three weeks before the trouble started, feeding him a bottle isn't helping.
- He loves nursery, barely gets upset when I drop him off and eats and (generally) sleeps well there.
- he's massive. Over 82cm tall at 13 months and over 75th percentile for weight
- generally pretty happy though prone to mercurial crankiness.
- I don't want to co-sleep and experience suggests he's not a baby for whom that will work.
- Waiting it is out not really an option anymore if we're to salvage our relationship.

My husband, while stupendously helpful in getting up, has taken the view that I'm a terrible person because I think we should hire a sleep trainer and that cry it out might be our only option. As you can imagine, that's really helping me feel like a great Mum.

Can anyone offer advice and save me from thinking this is the worst thing I've done? The little guy is lovely and amazing, apart from the broken sleep function.

I'm back at work in two weeks and want to be but am seriously considering quitting as I can't function. I have no idea how OH is doing it.

Mostly I just want to love being a Mum to a lovely little boy and while this going on I can't. It pervades everything.

Screamer1 Wed 19-Oct-16 04:36:53

How did he sleep before being ill? I know you say you've weaned his breastfeeding at night, does that mean he's not feeding at night now or are you giving him a bottle?

Whatthefreakinwhatnow Wed 19-Oct-16 05:08:29

Oh OP, I've been where you are. I was so worried for our relationship too, we were so tired all the time that we just snapped all the time, sex went out the window etc. In our case it was me who didn't want to do any sleep training and instead spent every night sat bolt upright with DD on my shoulder, because if she wasn't scratching my face constantly she would scream, it was such a mess.

In the end I decided enough was enough, DD was grey some days she was so tired; she was grumpy and miserable and I had permanent nausea/vomiting and a thumping head 24/7- something had to give.

Decided to do a modified version of supernanny CC so left for very short intervals, 2 mins twice, 3 twice, 4 etc never going longer than 5, would just go in use a stock phrase "night night DD, see you in the morning" and it worked really well!

I felt so awful the first day leading up on it, the guilt was unbelievable but after a couple of days she was fine and (touch wood!) still just goes down without a fuss and sleeps 6.30-5 😀 occasially she stirs early hours once but she settles very quickly.

she was like a new baby once she slept at night, and weirdly it made daytime sleep better too?!

I know CC isn't for everyone, but if you want to talk about it I'd happily share my experience with you

Expecting DC3 now and I won't hesitate to do it again if I need to, though I'm hoping not to get into such a ridiculous position again lol.

KitKat36 Wed 19-Oct-16 06:49:35

He's not feeding at night. We give him water and he seems happy with that. We've given him the odd bottle when he's seemed to need it/ started his hungry cry. HV very gung-ho he should have nothing but water I was more of the opinion that he probably needed just water but that flexibility and judgement needed.

KitKat36 Wed 19-Oct-16 07:57:06

And sleep before he was ill; until we night weaned he was waking four - five times a night for milk and refusing solids as not hungry. After he was waking 1-2 times which is entirely manageable. I'm not expecting him to be a 7-7 baby as he's been an awful sleeper since birth.

Screamer1 Wed 19-Oct-16 08:04:53

I agree with Whatthefreak. We've been where you are and ended up doing as gentle a form of CC as possible. Again, it isn't for everyone, but we did it the point where we felt we really had to, for our DS as much as for us.

But you really need to feel sure that it's what you want to do because it requires commitment and can take a few days, so you really need to stick to it or else you've been letting your baby cry for nothing.

We went in every 2 minutes, we never left it longer than that. We would go in and put our hand on him and say "sleepytime" and then leave. If his crying seemed to be settling or decreasing at any point we wouldn't go back in until it escalated again. If he was really upset we would pick him up give him a cuddle but then put him back down and walk out.

We were lucky, it worked in 1 night. We couldn't believe it. I know it can take longer though.

It's up to you what you need to do, and I'm sure some other people might come along with other suggestions. Good luck!

Hefezopf Wed 19-Oct-16 09:37:38

What often worked for us was sorting out daytime sleep first. If the kids napped well during the day then they tended to sleep well at night. Is he napping well at nursery? Do they stick to a routine with him there or just put him to bed when he looks tired? Maybe this is something you can request that they keep an eye on.

I know that you don't want to co-sleep, but, if you can bear it, it might be worth another try even for a short time. Maybe on a mattress on the floor in his room if you don't want him in your bed? Just saying that because it was the only thing that worked with my own son when I was at the end of my tether. Also because it sounds like he might be showing that he needs parents present at the moment. At the end of the day, if you can't get him to sleep in his cot then you all need to sleep somewhere.

Lots of babies lose it sleep-wise at that age. They have peak separation anxiety, their brains are telling them to get walking, they have constant viruses, routines are evolving etc. But they do get through it eventually. Good luck OP.

Laquila Wed 19-Oct-16 10:21:32

Oh I'm really sorry for you OP. Sleep deprivation is hideous. You've had some good advice here - the only thing I can add is "Your partner is not your enemy...your baby is your shared enemy...that's got me and my husband through some tough nights! Good luck and you're not alone.

KitKat36 Wed 19-Oct-16 11:33:36

Thanks for advice. I am really grateful even if my responses sound negative

In turn: he won't sleep if we try to co-sleep him. We've tried a few times. Everyone gets even less sleep. I've curled up o the floor of his room which didn't help either.

At nursery they stick to his routine other than when he came down with a bug there on one day where they reasonably gave him extra sleep. He settles beautifully for them which makes me feel even more of a failure. They're actually pretty awesome and happy to tell me what they do when stuff working well and I ask them.

The mutual enemy thing. I've tried to say that to DH but he doesn't see it.he just goes back to DS is just a baby and it's not his fault which is absolutely true. I guess I'm selfish but I wish someone would think about me.

What's worse is that our parents can't settle him at all so we can't even get a night off. They also live too far away.

Screamer1 Wed 19-Oct-16 11:51:42

Would your partner consider just speaking to a sleep consultant? There are some that specialise in very gentle methods. Then if you decide not to go with their advice at least you've given it a fair hearing.

I can recommend the lady we used if that helps?

It might be an expensive test, but it sounds like you're in need of something to change.

KitKat36 Wed 19-Oct-16 12:08:07

I don't know but would happily take that recommendation blush

Screamer1 Wed 19-Oct-16 12:48:34

Have DM'd you

KitKat36 Wed 19-Oct-16 12:52:12

Thanks have it and have heard of her

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