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8 week old won't sleep unless being held

(15 Posts)
needcoffee22 Sat 30-Jul-16 22:55:42


My baby is 8 weeks old, we tend to do a 'dream feed' about 10.30pm, he then goes down (whilst sleeping) in his Moses basket till around 2/3am. We already pre warm it with a hot water bottle.

Once he wakes at 2/3am, he has his nappy changed, fed.... Should go back in his Moses basket. He doesn't!! He falls asleep on us and every time we try and put him down he wakes up! The only way to get him to sleep is on us. I hate it and i. So worried about him suffocating. It's making us both really anxious.

He is also very close to growing out his Moses basket, I have no room for a cot in the bedroom so he might have to transition in to his cot soon, was hoping for a bit longer on this.

We try everything we can think of to get him to sleep on his own after that feed. Naps during the day are normally on us also.


middlings Sat 30-Jul-16 23:01:29

I wish I could give you the answer you want, but I can't. DD1 did was she was 'supposed' to do and went back into the basket. DD2 didn't. We eventually did some very gentle sleep training at 6 months. Until then, nothing worked. I wish now I'd just gone with it as I think it would have meant more sleep for me.

We co-slept. I read up on how to do it safely and that was that. You can do it safely.

Good luck.

needcoffee22 Sat 30-Jul-16 23:05:18

Thank you! I seem to be able to get him to sleep with me on the recliner seat with cushions wedged in to the sides and him cradled in my arms. He won't sleep on his back in the bed, he has reflux and is on medication for it. I'm really starting to dread night time because this battle we have with him, we always lose and I'm always scared.

We are just so tired that we don't have it in us to battle all night. We sometimes persist for over two hours with him and we can't function much longer on such little sleep.

middlings Sat 30-Jul-16 23:10:43

Stop persisting. That would be my first bit of advice. Just go with it for now. As dreadful as it sounds, do you have another room your DH can go into and then swap later in the night? We did that and it meant that we both got a bit of decent sleep.

I know this is awful but in the great scheme of things, it really doesn't last that long - promise.

BertieBotts Sat 30-Jul-16 23:11:44

It's quite normal, sorry to say! Remember that until very recently he was always being "held" by you, it's quite alien and must be scary for them to be out in the world without being able to hear your heart so close and smell you.

Do look up about safe co-sleeping - some reflex-friendly positions are baby side-sleeping with you in the "C" shape next to them (safe when you're co-sleeping) or them on their tummy but on your chest with the bed made safe for co-sleeping. If you can fit a bedside cot in that is a nice safety method as it works like a bed guard and gives you a bit more space.

Even if you don't want to encourage bedsharing I remember my NCT teacher saying that the most dangerous thing to do is end up bedsharing (or sofa sharing or chair sharing) unintentionally because you're so tired and it's the only way they settle. It's better to know that your bed is set up to be safe if you do accidentally fall asleep with them there.

Have you tried raising up one end of the basket with some books or similar? That can help with refluxy babies as well.

drinkyourmilk Sat 30-Jul-16 23:15:36

Have you tried a sleepyhead? They cocoon baby so they feel snuggled

BastardBernie Sat 30-Jul-16 23:21:40

I know this sounds bad but can't you not change his nappy in the night? I found this woke my DC up.
No lights, no eye contact and no talking at night time. Make a big thing out of the transition from day to night (blinds closed, lamp on, no television noise hour before bed, I turn a fan on whilst giving last feed in silence etc)
I always do daytime naps in the same room as the cot, next to an open window for traffic noise.
Also, I put blanket on my arm/under DC head and give last feed/daytime nap rock with this so their little head doesn't get cold when putting down.
One more thing -when DC wake up, I don't immediately pick them up. I acknowledge then with a big smile and coo over them, then do something quick (like put away laundry) whilst chatting to them. I think this helps DC learn feel content and safe if I'm not in eyesight.
Just a few tips from me, I am no expert though! smile

BertieBotts Sat 30-Jul-16 23:24:17

YY no nappy change at night unless poo or soaking.

thingamijig1 Sat 30-Jul-16 23:24:33

Sorry to say I agree with pp. my first slept like a dream. My second would only sleep on us. We got into a routine of swapping nights and the person up during the night grabbing a few hours in the morning say 6-8. It's not ideal but you have to do what gets you through. It doesn't last forever and you need your sleep. Find something that works for now and stick to that. Good luck

thingamijig1 Sat 30-Jul-16 23:26:48

Agreed to no nappy and big thing about day vs night. If anything the day vs night thing if not working now will help when sleep training will work ie post 6 months.

MiddleClassProblem Sat 30-Jul-16 23:29:33

Having a co sleeper crib was what worked for up. I still slept in odd positions but found I could eventually get away with just holding DD's feet in one hand (although every nap was in my arms). From 6 months she has slept through in her own room, naps too. Just because they are tricky in the beginning doesn't mean it'll stick

LongDivision Sat 30-Jul-16 23:48:36

I also had one who'd only sleep being held. You're doing nothing wrong. Agree with previous posters that you'll have to work out a schedule to swap holding him. Definitely sleep during those precious evening hours when he's down! With DS, one day (it was a few months in, unfortunately!) I put him down to run to the loo, and lo and behold he continued sleeping! and from that day on has been a fabulous sleeper. And a happy loving child, too - I think that early experience of being held was lovely for him, even though it was exhausting and hellish for us!

LongDivision Sat 30-Jul-16 23:52:24

Also, we put the cot in the living room so that one of us could sleep in the bedroom. Whatever works!

BertieBotts Sun 31-Jul-16 10:09:33

Also I don't know if anyone has said and forgive us if it seems obvious in hindsight but is not from the sleep deprived haze - this stage will not last forever. At 8 weeks you should be getting to the peak of it which means it will start to improve very soon. In the meantime, if shift sleeping works then do it. It's just about surviving at this stage. You'll get through it.

PlanBwastaken Sun 31-Jul-16 14:28:00

Changing to Pampers baby dry nappies made a difference on the nappy front - they only make them in size three though. That, and no more nighttime poos that you have to change...

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