Listening to DD scream herself sick - help!

(37 Posts)
OPeaches Thu 27-Dec-12 22:10:08

DD is 21 months and never been a good sleeper. She goes down okay - I BF her, put her in bed awake, then either DH or I sits with her until she's asleep.

The problems is that she wakes in the night, comes through to our bed and wants BF. I feed her and take her back to her own bed. This takes 40 mins to an hour and happens twice a night. She comes through at 6/6:30, feeds then that's her up for the day. I'm knackered! DH and I decided that tonight is the night we start tackling this.

She woke up at 9:30, DH went through and she's been screaming ever since. Horrible, forced screaming that is making her retch and throw up. She's screaming for mummy cuddles. It's awful to listen to and I'm finding it very hard not to go through. She's woken her 5 yr old brother up too and he's not amused!

How can we get through this without scarring her, and us, for life?!?!?! It's awful!

aprilrain Thu 27-Dec-12 22:11:16

Is DH still with her?

OPeaches Thu 27-Dec-12 22:14:02

Yes, he's singing to her and sitting by her bed.

aprilrain Thu 27-Dec-12 22:15:51

Could you go and sit with her? I know your DH is trying but she must be really distressed if she is being sick sad

aprilrain Thu 27-Dec-12 22:17:44

Maybe you could explain that there isn't any milk left in the night time, offer her a drink of water and a cuddle. Eventually she'll realise it's not worth waking up for water!

OPeaches Thu 27-Dec-12 22:19:09

I think it'd be worse if it was me as she's used to me feeding her to get back to sleep, and that's the cycle we want to break. The screaming has lessened now. Ill give it ten minutes then go through.

Oh you poor thing. DS is 16mo and has similar sleeping habits. We've had a few attempts at breaking the cycle but always fail because I can't cope with the screaming. Can you update if you persevere so I know it's possible? We're moving house and i'm starting a new job next week and not sure I'll manage it with our current set up.

Good luck x

HollaAtMeSanta Thu 27-Dec-12 22:31:40

Hang in there - it will be OK and worth it!

OPeaches Thu 27-Dec-12 22:32:03

She's asleep! Phew! Who knows how long she'll stay that way though. AtTruth, I'll update and let you know.

CountBapula Thu 27-Dec-12 22:32:45

I night weaned DS at around 18mo by bringing him into bed with us when he woke in the night but refusing to feed him. He cried next to me for a bit then went to sleep eventually. After a few days of that he'd just settle if I lay him next to me. Maybe worth a try? DS has never liked being put in his cot awake - I still bf him fully to sleep at 27mo blush and he didn't sleep through consistently until fairly recently.

<realises OP might not want to take advice from someone with such a crap sleeper>

CountBapula Thu 27-Dec-12 22:35:14

ATruth My DS was the same - a real screamer. We tried night weaning a few times but it didn't work until 18mo. Sometimes it's just that they're not ready. Same with him sleeping through - we didn't do anything, it just happened, despite the fact that he is still fed to sleep every night.

OPeaches Thu 27-Dec-12 22:35:33

count, I've tried that but don't have the willpower not to give in and feed her. blush

Thanks all x

OPeaches Thu 27-Dec-12 22:36:57

Oh, and Count, my DS was 3.6 before he slept through, I'm impressed yours was only 27 months grin

CountBapula Thu 27-Dec-12 22:41:46

I know the feeling, Peaches. Fingers crossed for you.

kickassmomma Thu 27-Dec-12 22:45:04

I swear by control crying. It's not everyone's cup of tea but for me it worked it means your dd wont get used to someone sitting with her but she will still see you or her dad at regular intervals which reassures her. Maybe leave her to cry 10 Minutes and I back in tell her it's bed time and settle her down stay with her for 2 mins then leave and just lengthen the time u wait before going in my dd wouldn't settle by herself but with 4 days of cc she settled and now self soothes during the night too smile

OPeaches Fri 28-Dec-12 07:13:57

Reporting back on night 1 . . . it went surprisingly well after that first horror hour. She woke at 2:40, DH went through and she protested for less than a minute before she went back to sleep!!!!! Miracle! She slept through again until 6 when her brother woke her up, so she would have gone a bit longer I think.

Pretty good result for the first night grin. Lets hope it wasn't a fluke.

RooneyMara Fri 28-Dec-12 07:17:55

Well we kind of just rolled with the milk requirement iyswim...ds ended up in my bed all night, he slept really well, I slept really well, no one had to get up.

No one screamed either which was a bonus smile

Good luck, hope you find things improve.

OPeaches Fri 28-Dec-12 07:28:56

Rooney, that's lovely. I like letting dd sleep with me, but she wakes every 2 hours demanding milk so it ends up being horrible.

RooneyMara Fri 28-Dec-12 07:30:23

no I do understand. It can be pretty awful. Perhaps she was just really fed up/overtired last night.

Hope that tonight is better all round xx

Thanks for the update. You're giving me hope grin

We're just going to roll with what we're doing for now because we don't want to try to introduce anything new at the same time as moving house (and changing nursery, and reducing the amount of time I spend with him... sad) but I have no doubt we'll need to do something drastic pretty soon.

OPeaches Sat 29-Dec-12 08:14:02

Aaaargh, last night was rubbish. I forgot we were staying at my sisters and DD shared a bed. She woke every 2 to 3 hours and fed. Didn't want to try refusing her or she'd scream the house down and wake everyone else.

Back to square one!

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sat 29-Dec-12 08:21:08

Did you explain to her what was going to happen?

We decided to night-wean DS2 who is 21 months last night. We did the same with DS1 at that age and it took 4 nights.

When I gave him his bedtime feed, I explained that my milk wouldn't work in the night anymore, that he could still have it at bedtime and in the morning but not during the night. He understood and was a but upset but we had a cuddle and he went to bed happily enough.
He didn't actually wake until 6, but DH went to him and cuddled him and offered him a drink of water. There were a few sad little sobs but then he went back to sleep until just gone 7.

I think they can understand more than you realise at this age, so explaining and reassuring are the way to go. Hang in there.

cannotbelievehowexpensive Sat 29-Dec-12 08:35:51

I think you need to find another method - letting your daughter cry until she is retching is extremely cruel - sorry if that's not what you want to hear but I think you probably know that yourself if you're honest with yourself. There are kinder, gentler ways to help her sleep than this.

I don't think anyone has mentioned Dr Jay Gordon's night weaning advice I know you're not co-sleeping but it's kinder than leaving her to cry. Worked brilliantly with DS at 15 months and he has a will of iron. Now at 22 months unless he's unwell he goes to sleep by himself (as in with no help) and stays asleep all night and then screams for milk first thing might be worth a go smile

OPeaches Sat 29-Dec-12 09:30:56

cannot, if she was crying/screaming in genuine distress I'd agree with you - I don't believe in CIO. However, she was screaming in anger because she wasn't getting what she wanted. It's still heartbreaking to listen to but it's not really genuine distress, fear and feelings if abandonment. Her daddy was with her the whole time too.

OPeaches Sat 29-Dec-12 11:25:22

I've had a read through jay Gordon now, thanks for that link, hadn't seen it before. It makes good sense I think.

ethelb Sat 29-Dec-12 16:55:40

Sorry you are going through this. My little sister used to scream until she was sick and i dont think she was any more or less ditressed than any other child tbh.

OPeaches Mon 31-Dec-12 06:36:35

Update:
Last night she went to bed happily, chattered a while so not asleep until 8. She didn't wake until 4. She came through, I gave her a quick cuddle and reminded her that milk doesn't work when mummy is sleeping, and DH took her back to her bed. She cried for less than a minute! She got up at 6, had a big BF and us now happily watching peppa pig.

Result!

HollaAtMeSanta Mon 31-Dec-12 10:58:41

Well done smile it is amazing how fast they adapt if you hold your nerve!

OPeaches Mon 31-Dec-12 14:01:40

I know! I thought it would be weeks if torture but its really not too bad. Fingers crossed it stays this way!

homeaway Mon 31-Dec-12 17:28:48

I smiled at the part where "mummy's milk does not work when she is sleeping" . Glad you got the result you wanted. smile

OPeaches Fri 04-Jan-13 07:03:57

SHE SLEPT THROUGH THE NIGHT!!!!!!

She went to sleep last night after nearly an hour of monkeying around, quite a long time for her, and the didn't wake up again until 6:40.

SHE SLEPT THROUGH THE NIGHT!!!!!!! grin grin grin grin

HollaAtMeBaby Fri 04-Jan-13 10:16:11

grin thanks wine grin

Excellent grin

I will be PMing you for tips soon. We moved house today so not going to try anything drastic with unsettled DS just yet but will defo need to change something soon.

I hope tonight is equally wonderful grin

ChippingInLovesChristmasLights Fri 04-Jan-13 22:54:16

Yay smile

Long may it last!!

Next you need to start not sitting with her until she goes to sleep. Put her to bed, tell her you need to go and have a shower and you'll be back in 5 minutes (go back in 10 mins), see how she is - say you need the toilet & you'll be back in 5 minutes (go back after 10), say you need some water (go back in 10) minutes until she's asleep. Couple of nights later stretch it to 15 minutes. You'll soon be in a position of putting her to bed and her completely self settling.

OPeaches Sun 06-Jan-13 08:19:41

The last two nights she's slept through until 4:30. She's gone back to sleep relatively easily and happily for DH, then up again at 6:30/6:45.

I feel like a new woman. After almost two years of three hours sleep at a time max, this is amazing. It's been so much easier than I expected too. grin

ATruth, just go for it!

RandomMess Sun 06-Jan-13 08:22:10

Great news smile

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