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Please help, my crying baby is upsetting me so much

(6 Posts)
Muse84 Mon 12-Feb-18 15:35:26

I feel so down.

I do not think I have pnd for a variety of reasons so let's skip over that.

I also have a great support network thank goodness.

My 15 week old EBF baby was an angelic perfect baby in every way. Then at 12 weeks he started having crying episodes in the day that rapidly develop into full-on screaming fits. If he is left for more than a couple of minutes the screaming will definitely happen. But sometimes even if picked up and comforted immediately, the screaming still happens. Sometimes the crying will stop. There are never any tears.

It ALWAYS starts when he wakes from a nap, but there's no pattern to duration of nap or situation. For example if he falls asleep in our arms, he could quite easily wake crying 30 mins later, even if we stayed still and silent holding him.

I am absolutely certain he is not unwell or in pain.

We are so lucky that he sleeps very well at night with no crying at all. But I'm gutted that I can't seem to do anything now as he will almost certainly scream and that will mean I have to leave wherever I am (in a pub yesterday lunchtime we had to take him outside to "reset" him, took over half an hour and he was too screams to breastfeed)... Or I go home (today's group exercise in the park was a writeoff). Bizarrely after an episode he's happy and cooing again.

I'm upset because I don't know where my sunny baby disappeared to. It was literally overnight, I can remember the first time.

I'm upset because I don't look forward to doing anything now. What's the point of trying to go anywhere with him?

I'm upset because I don't understand why he is doing this, there literally seems to be no pattern. I have even kept a diary, and taken my stressed self out of the equation with no effect!

And finally I'm upset because I feel trapped and don't know which way to turn. My mum thinks he might stop if he's left alone in a safe place to cry for a bit if all his needs have been met...in other words he's trying to get my attention and I'm reinforcing it. But I believe that he can't manipulate at this age and you can't spoil a baby. And if I do leave him to cry then it will most certainly have the desired effect but this means that he feels I have abandoned him. This upsets me most of all.

Am I just overreacting? I know many babies cry for hours on end at night, which must be soul destroying. This is why I feel like I can't explain to any of my other mum friends with babies who have cried throughout the night. But i just feel so trapped as the second I try to do anything I want, anything small, just for me (stepping one foot inside a shop!) he cries. I'm sitting at home now having abandoned the exercise class (which I couldn't do anyway as it turns out due to my post birth incontinence) with no idea what to do for the rest of the day except stay indoors. I can't face another lap around the park. What can I do? Who can I turn to for advice?! I do wish my mum didn't think that he's playing me, as it makes it hard to ask her for help. Maybe she's right? I give him everything I can, but has it been too much?

Any thoughts would be appreciated

Muse84 Mon 12-Feb-18 15:50:45

I should add to my extremely long rant that I feel so trapped because he also refuses the bottle, despite my practicing with him from about 5 weeks of age. He just decided one day to stop and we've tried every trick in the book to get him to start again. So I can't get away even for half a day!

Sorry for such a whine. I just got home and sat on the doormat and cried so had to vent somewhere.

WeaselsRising Mon 12-Feb-18 17:31:35

You don't say in your OP whether you've asked your GP or HV. If you haven't, that's the best place to start in case there is actually something wrong.

My first used to scream blue murder at the same sort of age, but hers was 3 hours of an evening. Yours doesn't seem to be the same if there's no pattern to it. She was awake all day and I couldn't leave her at all so you have my sympathies.

FWIW mine did stop eventually and none of my others (we have 5) have ever done it. It will pass.

Smellyjo Mon 12-Feb-18 19:10:54

Oh that sounds so hard. Sorry you've had such a rough day. So when you said this started overnight, how long has it been going on? I'm wondering if it could be a developmental leap of some kind, and around 4 months is a time of rapid development. My little one often had crazy phases just before she rolled or crawled, for example.

I also wonder if you ever babywear? It sounds like your baby is telling you he wants to be held a lot so maybe having him often inthe sling would help him feel secure, plus free your hands to get a cup of tea.

Its also worth being aware of how you are feeling affecting him - for example, given it's always happening after a nap, I imagine you'll be feeling really tense when out and about and know he'll wake up soon. Babies are so sensitive to our mood - but controlling anxiety is easier said than done I know! My dd used to scream in the car without fail and I would get so stressed before, during and after car journeys, I'm sure which didn't help her cope with it.

I'm with you on not spoiling a baby. I know there are many different views but I think leaving him to scream is likely to make him feel insecure and make the situation worse. In my experience, letting my dd be as dependent as she wants to (more or less) has led to her becoming independent when she is ready rather than because I have forced it.

It's such a hard time. You have my utmost sympathy. You don't sound depressed to me like you say, and you are definitely not whining. how you are feeling sounds normal and I expect the vast majority of parents have been there, they just don't all admit it. I know it is a cliche, but it really is true that this will pass. Hugs xx

Muse84 Mon 12-Feb-18 19:36:32

Weasels- you're right I haven't asked gp as I dint believe it's a health issue but I still feel I might leave the surgery with ranitidine and advice to cut out dairy!! I will definitely speak to HV thiugh as I feel their masses of experience in the field of babies will help! Thanks for your advice

Jo- thank you for your lovely reply, it had made me feel much better and also that I'm not going mad/being slightky pathetic! My mum is so lovely and supportive but I can't change her views so I'll have to become more confident in doing my own thing (ie wearing my baby) without also wanting her to agree it's the best thing to do!

Oh I hope this is a phase. I know there will always be something but this is I particularly tough as I cannot see why it's happening and so know what I can do (or stop doing) to help it.

buckyou Mon 12-Feb-18 21:13:43

You’ll have lots of ‘phases’ where you don’t know what’s up with them and everyone has an opinion to make you feel even more inadequate!

Stay calm, try and ignore everyone else and do what you think is best. Get used to having your life completely interrupted by small person.

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