To leave my 4 month old ds to cry?(98 Posts)
Night times are pretty hard work at the moment. My ds tends to wake up 5-6 times a night. He usually just needs a cuddle & his dummy to settle back down, sometimes he takes a teeny amount of milk (1-2 oz). I can deal with the lack of sleep at the moment but will be back at work in about 6 weeks & don't know how I'll cope if he's still doing it then. So - is now the time to start letting him cry it out? Or using the pick up put down method? My heart tells me it's so wrong to sit there listening to him cry & do nothing. But my head tells me if I don't tackle it soon he'll turn into a little sod who cries if he doesn't get his own way. X
He won't turn into a little sod who cries if he doesn't get his own way, he will turn into a sad little soul who has learnt he will be ignored if he cries. His trust in you will be broken, too.
Please do not let him cry it out - it is definitely not recommended under 6 months and there are other ways to deal with his completely normal for his age night time wakings. CIO doesn't teach babies to sleep, it teaches them that they will be ignored if they cry and try to communicate their needs to you so they might as well not bother. Try pick up put down but please do not leave him alone to cry.
No, far too little to let him cry it out. You are doing what he needs - cuddles, comfort and food.
Babies don't cry when they don't get their own way, they cry when their needs aren't being met, there's a big difference.
Babies cry, that's what they do, some sleep and others don't although I can understand you being nervous about going back to work soon.
I'm not totally opposed to controlled crying in older children but your son is far far too young.
I'm not either nancy but same as you, not this young.
Agree, he won't turn into a little sod. Babies can't and don't think like that.
Also agree that even those who agree with CIO don't recommend it for under 6 mths. Plus you might do it but despite what we are lead to believe it doesn't always work and if it does it doesn't always last. I foolishly tried it with DS1 and it worked for about 2 weeks and then it didn't any more - he went back to waking continually for no apparent reason. Don't make the mistake of assuming it is the end to all your troubles if you only you can last those 3 gut wrenching days until they can cry themselves to sleep. It might work and then you still find by the time you go back to work he is waking up again. The only thing you can guarantee with babies is that nothing will stay the same for long!
I would go for pick up and put down personally, if you want to try something or I would just put up with it. He might grow out of it soon anyway. You have no way of knowing of course which is the hard part.
Do you co sleep, is it something you would consider as it sounds like he mainly needs comfort?
What will you do when he's teething?
You cannot spoil a baby by responding to his needs. And if he's crying that's because he needs something.
Please don't even thing of leaving him to cry it out.
I completely disagree with the other posters, I left my last two children to cry it out at about the same time and they are wonderful sleepers now (day and night). They don't have any seperation issues or trust issues either.
You cannot possibly go back to work having been woken up 5-6 times a night.
They do learn that they will get ignored if they cry - because its the middle of the night and they should be asleep. They still do cry if its something serious or they're really hungry.
Thanks for your advice ladies. You've given me the confidence to try for a bit longer & hopefully he'll settle down soon. No valium I don't co sleep. Although I'm not against it - I sometimes being him into bed with me after dp's gone to work in the mornings. X
It's exhausting work, OP, and I can understand your concern about how you'll cope when you go back to work. But he's a tiny baby and I think it would be wrong to leave him to cry. I think it's really tough, but you'll just have to suck it up. Can your DP share the load so that you do a night each?
Karoleann, I'm afraid you sound rather ignorant about child development! You may want your baby to asleep in the middle of the night, but that doesn't mean he should be. It is perfectly normal for a baby to wake in the night at that age, and to ignore him and leave him to cry because it doesn't suit you to get out of your bed to comfort him is selfish and negligent.
It sounds like you're thinking of teaching him that it doesn't matter if he cries, no one will come please don't do that. My dd stopped crying when she realised I'd go as soon as she stirred, so she didn't have to cry. We cosleep so it's just a matter of having the video monitor on before we join her at night.
I can't tell you about your baby, I only know mine. But I promise that if it feels wrong, it is wrong. You're designed for this job and not any other, so trust your instincts.
Please don't leave him to cry. He is so young, and so vulnerable, right now his only trust is that you will be there for him when he needs you.
Babies are designed to wake and to feed in the night, so that combined with the big sleep regression and development spurt that happens at four months equals complete normality.
You will learn to cope with work, your son's needs still need to be a priority.
And please don't refer to him as a little sod, that twisted my heart a little bit.
PIck your times to feed him. If say he wakes befpre 10pm, re settle him with a dummy/ cuddle. First waking after ten feed him. Then again, if he wakes after that but before 3am resettle and after 3, feed.
If it's any consolation I went back to work when dd was 4.5 months and in the middle of horrific 4 month sleep regression (waking every hour). Work turned out to be rather nice. Yes I was (still am) tired and work can be stressful but it's a different kind of stress to looking after dd all day. I get to have a sit down and a coffee occasionally, and nobody screams when I go to the loo.
They do learn that they will get ignored if they cry - because its the middle of the night and they should be asleep.
I used pick up put down with DD and ir worked a charm. Took a couple of nights but they got better pdq.
I'd obviously check it wasn't hunger or pain beforehand though - 1-2oz isn't hunger. When I did 'training' I'd medicate at the first wake up so I knew after 15-20 mins it couldn't be teething pain.
Sorry pressed enter too soon.
Babies don't cry to get their own way and picking them up won't spoil them. I echo what everyone else is saying. Don't let him cry it out.
Yep Hear, I was thinking 4 month sleep regression as well. OP, I'd carry on as you are for now. If it's still no better in 4 weeks or so, maybe look into sleep training methods - but not CIO! I'm with the majority on that.
I took ds's dummy away around that age as he kept waking looking for it and did a sort of pick up put down to settle him instead. Could it be the dummy that is the problem?
"You cannot possibly go back to work having been woken up 5-6 times a night"
Actually it is possible. My 2yr old has started waking up (again after 6 months of only once a night)) at least 4x a night and I do manage to hold down a job (albeit part-time). I do co-sleep though which makes it slightly less disruptive. Depends on the job though. You couldn't go in and teach or do brain surgery.
And I do understand that for some people sleep deprivation is torture. I do find it hard and it does affect me but I suppose I've got used to it.
At 4 months it's perfectly common for babies to be waking through the night. As your DS is doing it so much it might be developmental, might be teething, he might be cold- it will probably change very soon. Most babies go through bad patches/sleep regressions then it seems to get better again.
Maybe worth co-sleeping for a bit if he's as easily resettled as he sounds (cuddle and dummy).
I really hate these threads, I hate knowing that there are people out there that think it's OK to leave a baby to cry.
I don't use the word hate lightly, there is very little that I actually hate,
I'm sorry if me saying this annoys anyone, but it is so incredible sad that people have convinced themselves it is a good thing to leave a distressed baby.
You cannot possibly go back to work having been woken up 5-6 times a night.
You can, actually, Karoleann. I'm going back to work full-time, starting Monday, with a baby that wakes 5-6 times per night. Your body adapts.
Don't make the mistake of assuming it is the end to all your troubles if you only you can last those 3 gut wrenching days until they can cry themselves to sleep. It might work and then you still find by the time you go back to work he is waking up again. The only thing you can guarantee with babies is that nothing will stay the same for long!
^^ This. Totally agree BBB. I did both gradual withdrawal (pre-6 months) and CC (post-6 months) with my 'sleep is for cowards' DS. What little effect either had did not stick. He went straight back to his old ways within weeks, sometimes worse than he was, and I felt like shit for having done it. CC/CIO certainly does work for some people, but it's not guaranteed success and it's certainly not recommended for a baby under 6 months.
What do we say Hear? You just gotta ride the mo fo out!
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