AIBU to be struggling with my newborn :((104 Posts)
Have a gorgeous 6 week old baby boy who I adore but I am finding things really tough.
I can only assume he has colic as everyday we have these huge crying/screaming spells which go on for hours and nothing soothes him, we've had him fully checked out and there's nothing wrong with him physically- so we've been told it's colic and will just go away in time.
Add to this the fact he refuses to sleep anywhere but on you - meaning we are seriously sleep deprived. Refuses to sleep in his Moses basket or anywhere else.
Also he refuses to be put down - screams when u lay him down to change his nappy- or put him down to make a cup of tea even. We've tried a sling but half the time he hates that as well and just wants to be carried about.
It's just so tough, I'm exhausted and feel I should be able to cope better.
Should I be managing better than I am?!
Six weeks is often a crappy time, I think it's a developmental milestone or something. My dd certainly upped her feeding and clingyness around that time.
This sounds fairly normal from my experience. Some newborns are really really relentlessly hard work.
There are some things which help. How are you feeding him? How much support do you have? Are you able to spend time with other new mums? What sort of sling are you using?
And yes it's so normal. It gets easier op. If you can get to a baby group you'll hear everyone moaning and you'll feel better!
Sounds like my dd and i felt the same. Yabu. It's a very difficult time. Don't get caught up in 'i should be doing batter's. Unfortunately some babies get colic and you get through it the best you can.
Hi, am formula feeding - did breastfeed for about 4 weeks but he would be on the breast for 4-5 hours and then scream for food again 20 minutes later. I just couldn't sustain it.
I've got food support from my mum but she has her own life, and my partner is great when he's around but works long hours.
I am using a wrap around sling, but am only getting sporadic success
I feel for you op, my ds is 1 now and I can still remember the first 6-12 weeks.
My ds had pre colic, which meant he only screamed for 1.5-2hrs a night . Anyway the doctor rather smugly told us it would magically disappear around 12 weeks, I didn't believe a word of it but suddenly just before 13 weeks it stopped. I hope it is the same for you too.
It's a really tricky time and the sleep deprivation is torture. Ours still sleeps pretty badly, he seems to hit every sleep regression going but most of our friends babies sleep brilliantly so I think we are in the minority.
My advice is get as much help as you can and try not to go mad at each other. I promise you this phase will pass and then it's onto the next one This baby malarkey is pretty tough, much harder than I anticipated but at the same time they become lovely little people. Once you start to get something back - first smiles, laughter, kisses etc it makes it so much better
Mine had reflux so was very smiliar, simply could not be put down and even when held had to be held a specific way. 6 weeks is tiny and most babies will be hard work. I definitely didn't cope, it's ok not to be coping, ask everyone and anyone you can for help and a break. Is the dad around and taking shifts? This part does end, it feels like it won't but it does!
Being a mum is bloody hard work. My little boy would only sleep on me as he would cough and splutter constantly when laid flat. Turns out he had reflux and even elevating his Moses basket didn't help. Oh, I remember my OH would 'hug and hum' with my sons head tucked under his chin as this really calmed my son down.
My HV got me onto a baby massage course and that really helped as he also suffered with trapped wind which I could never get him to release. It also helped being with a group of other women who were also in the same wide-eyed WTF do I do? situation.
It does get better and for those shitty days, there's cake. Loads of cake.
All totally normal. I could have written the exact same post after the birth of my dd 2 years ago. You are doing an amazing job and you're a great mum. It gets a bit easier around the 12 week mark, and eventually it gets so much easier you begin to think having another one sounds like a good idea.
I am right there with you, we have a 2yo and 5 week old twins. Hang in there.
Oh, sh*t, I remember this with my DS2. He was the result of IVF, for pity's sake, and years and years of struggle, and I ended up wanting to throw him out of an upstairs window.
What you describe does sound like colic. What I found helped: getting away from him when possible. Hire what you can afford, hand him off to DP, beg family and friends for respite, etc etc, and don't feel guilty. This isn't a permanent stage but it is unbearable.
When truly desperate, gently place him in a safe place (his cot) and go away and put your head under the shower or something. He's going to cry anyway. He might just cry himself to sleep. And don't feel guilty. Any day is a good day if you don't throw him out the window.
Ask the doctor if simethicone drops might help. They relieve intestinal gas, and worked wonders on DS2.
But I have to admit it took me a good year after he stopped crying to really feel I loved DS2. I think I was unable to forgive myself, and therefore him, for finding him so hard. Don't do this to yourself. If you didn't fundamentally love him, his being so upset and crying wouldn't bother you.
Some babies really are much easier than others -- DS1 was a dream and never cried at all, even after innoculations.
If you're breastfeeding, make sure you are getting plenty of fluids yourself. Newborn babies go through days when they need to up the milk supply by suckling constantly. I once timed how long I was feeding DS1 for, and it was almost 13 hours one particular day!
I found baby massage classes helped with colic, and was nice for both of us. I also met other new mothers, who were all going through the same thing.
Have you anyone who can help, even just holding the baby for a while so you can shower or do whatever you need to.
The 7 year old daughter of a neighbour used to love to come and hold the baby, obviously supervised, but it helped!
The best plan at this age is to go with whatever buys you five minutes/sleep/a sandwich, take the path of least resistance and know that it will pass. I can't guarantee when, it might be a few days or a few weeks, but it will pass.
For nappy changes, as horrible as it is to hear your baby cry, block out the crying and plough through it. That nappy needs changing regardless so get it over with as quickly as possible and then have a cuddle afterwards. DS is 15mo and still hates having his nappy changed except he can run away now! The only bit of it he likes is the opportunity to play with his willy
None of mine had colic but I know there's advice out there on ways to help with it, tummy massages and other techniques. Has your health visitor given you any tips?
Do you have a bouncy seat? All of mine hated the sling and my youngest hated to be put down but they'd happily sit in the baby bouncer in front of me for short periods, especially if I rocked it with my foot. Ditto a swing, we got a second hand one at the car boot sale for a fiver and DD, a total velcro baby, was content to go in it long enough for me to eat.
For baths, trying taking the baby in with you. Mine screamed in the baby bath but enjoyed the big bath and some skin to skin while getting washed.
Most importantly though, do you have supprt either on here or in RL? I joined a MN post natal group and it was invaluable as we were all at the same stage so could help each other through the crap bits and cheer each on in the lovely bits.
Those early weeks can be a total bloody nightmare eh?
Think it would be a lot easier if they told us straight up, when we were PG, that we'd be holding/feeding/comforting the baby literally 24 hours a day for the first couple of months. All those pictures of angelic babies in their Moses baskets, buggies made me feel like a total failure when DD1 arrived & refused to be put down.
With DD2 I took the attitude that her default position was on me, so every minute she wasn't on me was like an amazing bonus 60 seconds of freedom which I could use to have a wee!
This is what they call the fourth trimester. You probably have about 6 more weeks of this before he moves into the next stage. Some babies just need constant human contact. They need to be held. It does not always need to be you - so if anyone else is around then hand him over and go have a rest! But it is very tiring and you should not feel like you have to do everything. Spend time with your baby and get as much help as you can with all the other stuff.
It feels like forever at the time but actually only lasts a short while.
Thanks all- feels better to know in not alone! Yes I know exactly how u feel- obviously I love him so much and would never harm him, but sometimes I just want to scream "stop crying!!! I have done everything I can!!" But I never do of course.
He does also have reflux- and vomits loads after every feed. Soaks me and himself usually. Very frustrating when you've just got him and you dressed
It's just so relentless. My partner does help yes when he can- but he's working late all this week so it's all on me!
First of all OP -
Now as a relatively new dad (my dd is 5 months old) I can definitely sympathise even though I suffered nowhere near as much as my DP who woke up for every feed (breastfed and not expressing) but rest assured this all seems normal and just remember that it definitely won't stay this way forever!!! It's certainly good that your partner is great in your own words and I hope they are doing what they can to not only help with the usual baby things as well as bringing home the Bacon but also providing those little gestures that can keep you sane - for my DP it was giving a foot massage, insisting on running her a bath, doing the nappy changes or cooking a meal. Not huge things but when running on empty they can be a life saver.
Don't be afraid to say to people if it's all getting on top of you either! It's great that you've posted here because MN can be a good source of support and advice but it's also paramount to do this in RL, you'll not be a burden to anyone I'm sure and those who love and care for you guys will assist in those hours when you need them most. It might take a while before baby settles into a routine, DD took until about 3 months before she settled and we've been lucky in that respect tbh, but you'll get there in the end my dear
Congratulations on your wee baby and don't forget it DOES get easier!!!
Oh I feel your pain! Things that sometimes helped:
De-tuned radio ie white noise (no idea where we got that idea)
Going outside ( shuts up so as not ti attract wolves???)
Laying tummy down straddled over your arm or leg, rubbing back
Massaging tummy v gently, clockwise, to encourage gas on its way
Bouncing self and babe over shoulder, to quite loud music
Brandy ( for you!)
The passage of time.
Only the last is a sure fire winner.
In the meantime talk to your hv, and have a good cry. It completely sucks. Accept all offers of help; if someone can take him out in the pram so you can have a bath/doze/quiet read for half an hour SAY YES
I know it sounds like shitty advice designed to fob you off but, getting out of the house helps loads. Even if it's just five minutes around the block with the pram, it's a break from the four walls, it's a change of scene and fresh air, and it's breathing space. At one point I had three under five and used to walk laps around the local park in the pissing rain with the double pushchair and the eldest on a scooter just to get them and me out of the house for a bit
It will pass. Our 15 month old often now sleeps up to ten hours in her own cot. It's approximately 3mm from my side of the bed, but we try not to get too hung up on the details.
But if anyone had told me this a year ago, I probably would have either laughed, cried, or punched them in the face through sheer disbelief.
Hang in there kiddo. It'll get better one day- and then you'll only get broody and submit yourself to the same torture all over again.
Thanks again everyone.
I do worry though that my little one can sense my frustration with him at times - and he might struggle to bond with me because of it
Oh this sounds so familiar op!! Hugs!!
I remember feeling exactly the same and telling my friends (also with newborns) ' I am really struggling' and the generally looked at me like, 'wtf? Babies are lovely and easy!' Very few people will admit, in real life, how hard it is, and everyone just tells you the good bits. Talking to a friend who was really honest about how hard things are, saved me! And reading mumsnet of course.
Six weeks was a particularly bad time for us, I remember crying for hours on end. But all these tough periods - sometimes there is nothing you can do, and you just have to ride it out (I hope someone else has better advice!)
He won't, he really won't. He's bonded with you regardless you're his mum. You're the first home he ever knew, the first face he ever saw, and you'll always be special to him. One of the blessings of babyhood is that they don't remember the shit bits
DS1 is 10 and I can still remember this time, relentless is the exact word. About 12-13 weeks was a huge turning point. Before then we wore holes in carpet as he was only quiet if we moved about. DP used to bounce on an exercise ball with him.
We co-slept as he would not go in his Moses basket or cot.
He would sit in the bouncy chair for about 3 mins- long enough to go to the loo and get a drink. it is hard work! But it does get better, honest.
Is he on meds for the reflux? Friends had babies with reflux and Ranitidine(sp?) changed their lives. Other than that hang on in there, it will get better
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