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Do I have unrealistic expectations of a 7 month old?(11 Posts)
My ds is now 7 months old. He's a real character - very headstrong and extremely independent. He's been crawling for almost a month, has to hold his own bottles and is very fiery - going from sunshine and laughter to epic meltdown in a blink. I'm not going to lie I'm really struggling and I don't even really know why. He still cries a lot, I think partly frustration as he wants to be everywhere doing everything, but after 7 months I thought the amount of crying might have reduced a bit. He sleeps wel so I can't complain there, but if I'm totally honest I'm really still not enjoying life and it all still feels like such an uphill struggle. I feel numb when someone asks me about him - I don't hate him but I find it so hard to say I love him. I really struggled to bond with him and I still don't feel like I'm there. We do a lot, go to a lot of groups, and some days are better than others but mainly I just have this huge weight of fear inside me thinking about how horrendous he might be as a toddler. I can't imagine anything but trouble and i can't imagine any of the good bits to come. People kept telling me it gets better at 6 weeks, 3 months, 5 months...and I'm just waiting and waiting for the time to come when I enjoy it! I think I'm struggling to come to terms with the fact I don't have an "easy" baby and that he cries a lot. I feel like I'm wishing my life away waiting for this moment when suddenly I'll enjoy him. I was so looking forward to having a baby and I'm so jealous of those mothers who speak of this al consuming love and when I see the looks they give their babies. I don't even know why I'm writing this I just needed to get it out as it's not even 9am and I'm already really finding the day hard.
OP - has your baby had reflux? I have noticed that some reflux babies continue crying a lot even when they are on medications and no longer in pain. Perhaps, they get used to crying every time they are frustrated or slightly unhappy and persist with this habit.
My DD also cries quite a bit during the day. Her reflux is now under control and she is normally very smiley and giggly but any tiny thing (e.g. unusual noise) can set her off. If she loses a toy, she can go absolutely hysterical. When we went out this weekend and she dropped a piece of bread that she was chewing on, she cried so loudly and desperately that everyone in the restaurant thought she was in major pain. She was absolutely fine - she just wanted a new bread stick.
It is very hard when your baby is high maintenance but I know I felt much better when I got some of "me" time back. I have now got a part-time nanny and being able to get out on my own (even for a couple of hours) feels absolutely incredible. Take any help you can get - from your OH, your family, friends. If your DS sleeps well and you can afford it, get a babysitter in the evening. You may feel differently very soon.
Another thing I found helpful is ensuring my DD gets enough daily sleep. Overtiredness makes babies very grumpy so I am making sure DD naps regularly. Again, for me having a rested baby makes a big difference.
Hang in there! You are doing great and at some point it should get better (I know you have heard it multiple times but - apparently - the darkest hour is just before the dawn).
He did have acid reflux yes - that makes sense that he's used to crying as his go to sound! It's just incredibly disheartening - I don't feel like he's happy, I'm definitely not happy! I know it's just a sit and wait it out, but it scares me that it could be years still!!
We had a difficult few months with DS from 6 to 8 months or so.
I found having baths together seemed to help relax him - he also loved playing with the various bubble and water toys together, plus I think it was it was a fun space to play in, with clear boundaries (i.e. he had no reason to try to climb out of the bath!). It became quite a regular routine.
He would always resist going into the pushchair, but was quite happy once in it, and liked a lot of walks to calm him down, especially when tired.
He started to ADORE the 'toddler & baby" soft play areas. Many a happy afternoon spent together there.
He eventually turned into one of those toddlers who definitely needed LOTS of exercise, but loved anywhere with other toddlers, or slightly older preschoolers to "watch" and "try to copy".
He also always had very strong "highs" and "lows" in mood.
Thanks sunshine a they sound very similar. Bathing tigether is a great idea.
Ds can also be extremely happy and will giggle and giggle but god when it changes it really changes! I get the high highs and the low lows! We had a good day today mostly spent out of the house - which helped both our moods. I was incredibly down in a rut yesterday and couldnt see the light and was obsessing over how everyone's baby was better / nicer / easier / happier - but today DS was charming in front of my friends (til we got home and everything changed!) so it made me realise that they probably think he's v easy..if only they knew!
My first son was a very difficult baby who cried all the time. I got PND as a result of how difficult I found it to mother him. I have to say a low dose antidepressant for 6 months from a very kind GP who listened to me made a world of difference!
Things got much easier when he could walk at 12mo, loads easier again when he could string a sentence together at 19mo and by 2 he was an absolute charmer.
He just hated being a baby!
Are you going back to work soon? If so that might help your mood, spending time with adults who don't cry at you all day work's wonders!
You're not alone, crying babies are very wearying! He will NOT be like this as a toddler or a pre schooler or a 5yo. You just can't see the woods for the trees a thousand the moment cos you're still "in the trenches" of the first year.
If you feel in that dark rut frequently it might be worth a chat with ur GP. It will get better as he grows up and Is able to play with toys and watch a couple of episodes of Iggle Piggle whilst you have a hot shower.
This probably sounds like an impossible pipe dream now (!) but it's only a few months away. Hang in there.
@Firsttimer16 hi there lovely, this may not reach you as I know it’s now a few years down the line since you posted, but I came across this thread after googling ‘why my 7 month is so unhappy’ and to be frank I could have written your post myself. After a year of trying, we eventually fell pregnant with our first born last year and our little bundle was born in February 2019. Unfortunately our little Archie suffered with milk protein allergy, along with reflux and was (still is) a very very unhappy baby. I too kept wishing time away hoping for the next stage where he may become happier and although he’s miles better, he’s still either extremely unhappy or extremely happy- no in between! I was just wondering if your little one has become much happier as he’s grown to a toddler? I just need some hope xxx
Oh wow this sounds JUST like my little boy
Incredibly hard work! He's 11 months old now and all I can say is he gets easier eveey month!
I just wanted to update this in case anyone should come across this thread while having their own issues. DS is now 3, almost 4 and he is an absolute DELIGHT. I couldn't love him more - and it feels like reading about another person's life reading the post I wrote above. DS is a very emotional person still - he's incredibly sensitive and thoughtful and gentle and he did have a lot of tantrums as a 2 year old, but as a 3 year old he has been so easy compared to a lot of my friends 3 year olds! He is very smart and I really think he just hated being a baby! He's very funny, and generally an extremely happy child.
I had a second DS who was a very "easy" baby - rarely cried, very smiley. It made me reaslise what a different experience I had had each time. And how pointless it is to compare yourself to anyone else as you're raising completely different people. Flip side is I think DS2 is going to be far far harder as a toddler / child - he's SO much "naughtier" and doesn't like being told no!
Anyway, I hope this gives some hope to people who are having a tough time - if I ever had a 3rd I would deal with having a "hard" baby so much better knowing that it doesn't dictate their personality for ever.
So nice of you to update this thread!!! I also have a very easy second baby now and can't believe I survived my first being such a terror (now also a delight)! 🥰