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I'm loosing the plot - Help

(13 Posts)
hellypelly Mon 30-Jul-07 10:23:30

I need some advice.

My ds (one and only) is 12m old. He still wakes up three times a night for his dummy (he rolls over and can't find any of them); then come 4am (4.30 at the latest) he's wide awake screaming blue murder and we bring him in to us, but he still won't sleep. We've tried controlled crying but it's not worked. He's at nursery full time and has about 1 1/2 - 2 hours sleep a day (although this makes no difference on how much he has) and come 6.45 he's have to have eaten (or gets overtired and won't eat) so come 7.30 he's fast asleep, plus he's now developed temper-tantrums, won't go to his dad, etc and becoming very clingy to me at w/ends to the extent that I can't leave him.

I'm so sleep-deprived that I'm doing nothing but screaming and shouting at each the both of them(which isn't me) and feel that I can't cope anymore.

IDEAS REALLY NEEDED.

HonoriaGlossop Mon 30-Jul-07 10:46:38

oh wow helly. That sounds hard to cope with!

I think you need to prioritise perhaps? It sounds to me like maybe the waking in the night is the first thing to tackle; which probably means dealing with the dummy issue. Either you need to wean him off them, or just take another approach that makes life easier for all; could you co-sleep so that he can have instant comfort when he needs it?

I think he obviously needs to go to bed when he does as he's ready for it so I wouldn't get tempted to put him down later; often it seems to have no effect on the time they wake, anyway. I think his early waking is possibly more related to his broken sleep and being overtired!

Please take this in the helpful tone it's offered; I'm not judging your decision because I don't know the facts fully, but do you think nursery full time may be contributing to his exhausted-ness? Would a childminder be a possibility instead? Less children and a more homelike environment may be less for him to cope with full-time? Nursery could be a very hectic environment?

With the unwillingness to go to dad, this is SO common! I experienced it and I've read numerous posts on here about it. The concensus seems to be (and what worked like a charm for us) is just insisting that dad and baby have their own time alone together at the weekend. At about your ds age, DH started to take him swimming and it gave them a long morning together. DS was full of tears at leaving me at first but it was fine. They get used to relying on dad for love and care too and it really helps.

Clinginess to you is also very common I'm afraid. I personally feel it's something to give in to as much as possible. If they want their mum, they are asking for what they need for their development; and you shouldn't feel bad about carting them around, etc. However also, if you need to get something done don't agonise, hand him over and get on with it....but in general, if they're clingy I think they get over it best when they get what they want!

cornsilk Mon 30-Jul-07 10:51:57

That sounds very hard helly. When did you try cc? I know lots of mumsnetters are against it but it really worked for my ds2 (not for ds1 so can see where you're coming from. Could he be overtired? My ds 2 gets like that if he goes to bed too late. Have you tried putting him down earlier at night?

Meeely2 Mon 30-Jul-07 11:02:34

needed to respond to the nursery full time comment - my DT's been at nursery full time since they were 5 months, they've never had issues sleeping because of it, so i think you can rule that out. Plus they need consistancy, if you move him to a CM now while he going through a clingy patch could make things worse.

I think my thoughts would be - teething? Molars? Can be very painful. One of my boys went through a phase of waking nightly, i would go in, replace dummy (which used to work) and then leave - screaming! It was totally new, so I actually started lying on their bedroom floor and patting his bottom until he went into a deep sleep. This worked but i was shattered! Eventually one night, screaming was constant, dh came in, sent me to bed and settled dt in approx 5 mins flat! It's been his job ever since (if needed, which isn't often now). I think my lo knew he could wrap mummy round his little finger but daddy, oh no. this could be your issue.

Onto dummies - we went cold turkey just after they were two, was hell for about a week, but we haven't asked for them or mentioned them in months....i would recommend that if you are thinking about it, otherwise leave it til you think you are ready. Weaning them off generally doesn't work - I found it was US that needed weaning not the kids, cos we relied on them so much as a cry stopper when we were out. Glad we did it though, boys look much better with them and without the constant patch of dribble on their t-shirts and red chins.

Last but not least, maybe try meds before bed, if it is teeth, he could be very uncomfortable when he wakes in the night - the meds may take the pain away so could settle himself should he wake in the night.

Good luck, I went on a bit there, but i have always had good sleepers with a few hiccups on the way so feel i have things to offer - consistancy is the key too, if you deal with him the same way each time - he will soon learn to self settle. I NEVER took mine into bed with me so they never expected it or wanted it, they always got 'shush, bedtime now' a kiss and a pat on the bottom. 9ok befor eu send social services round, if they ill obviously they get lots of TLC).

Take care, stick at it and goodluck.

hellypelly Mon 30-Jul-07 11:11:34

can't put him down any earlier as I don't get in until 6.30 after picking him straight up from after work.

HonoriaGlossop Mon 30-Jul-07 11:16:26

glad to hear your DT's were fine meely, but individual children do differ. Some find things exhausting that others wouldn't. I never used nursery though so what do I know! It was just a thought. I am friends with a nursery manager though and she has always said to me that she would not use nursery full time for her own child, partly due to the exhaustion factor, because she has seen children that find it too much.

However all this may be a red herring, possibly not worth pursuing if helly feels it's what she wants to continue with. I do agree meely that consistency is important but it has to be weighed against possible overall benefits; if I'd ONLY thought about consistency I'd not have moved my ds from his first pre-school, but it was the best move we ever made for him in the end!

cornsilk Mon 30-Jul-07 13:47:16

It probably doesn't sound very helpful now, but he will grow out of it. Had same problem with my ds1 when I went back to work full-time and didn't get in till 5/6 ish. Was knackered myself and he always seemed to wake in the night. Would be sat watching tellytubbies with him at 3 in the morning, thinking that I would have to get up in 3 hours! Exhausting. Sounds like you're doing everything you can helly. Look after yourself and make sure you eat properly. Get extra sleep where you can.

juuule Mon 30-Jul-07 14:51:31

Same as Cornsilk. Some of my children were like this. I could often be found sat up around 2 or 3am. They do grow out of it but you have to find a way around it until they do. Perhaps go to bed as soon as your ds does for a few nights, alternate nights with your dh?
Also, it does seem to be down to the individual child's personality as a couple of mine didn't do this very often and some did it every night.

lucyellensmum Mon 30-Jul-07 16:00:15

poor you - i dont really have much advice, other than to say that i have been there and it does improve. My DD has only really just started sleeping through and she is 2 now.

I know this seems like a step back but is there any way you could have his cot back in with you? DD is still in with us due to logistics but i feel it works well, my HV doesnt tend to agree. We used to co sleep, not much sleep for mummy and daddy there then and then i progressed to just letting her fall asleep with us going on to holding her in cot, nightmare which went on for months, up to two hours settling every night. Then one day i had no choice but to leave her to settle, and thats what she did, settle, her sleeping is sooo much better now. She does still wake occasionally and i have to hold her hand til she goes back to sleep and thats only a few minutes. Things are so much better now and i couldnt see the end of the tunnel so to speak.

I never did CC, i dont like the idea of leaving a tot to cry itself to sleep, you can paint it how you like but that is what it is.

It does sound like the poor wee soul is sleep deprived too, temper tantrums etc so it is a case of breaking the cycle somehow, for his sake. Im not sure what advise to offer other than to share our experience and say that it wont be forever, it feels like it but it does get better, honestly.

I think just take queues from your little man, that is what we did, not on purpose but she is the boss after all DD would never have a dummy, is a thumb sucker so never had the dummy retreival issue, is there a way maybe of losing the dummy, i dont have experience of this so i might be asking a lot here. That way, once he is happy without it, he may sleep better.

Sorry, not much help just empathy

lucyellensmum Mon 30-Jul-07 16:00:55

poor you - i dont really have much advice, other than to say that i have been there and it does improve. My DD has only really just started sleeping through and she is 2 now.

I know this seems like a step back but is there any way you could have his cot back in with you? DD is still in with us due to logistics but i feel it works well, my HV doesnt tend to agree. We used to co sleep, not much sleep for mummy and daddy there then and then i progressed to just letting her fall asleep with us going on to holding her in cot, nightmare which went on for months, up to two hours settling every night. Then one day i had no choice but to leave her to settle, and thats what she did, settle, her sleeping is sooo much better now. She does still wake occasionally and i have to hold her hand til she goes back to sleep and thats only a few minutes. Things are so much better now and i couldnt see the end of the tunnel so to speak.

I never did CC, i dont like the idea of leaving a tot to cry itself to sleep, you can paint it how you like but that is what it is.

It does sound like the poor wee soul is sleep deprived too, temper tantrums etc so it is a case of breaking the cycle somehow, for his sake. Im not sure what advise to offer other than to share our experience and say that it wont be forever, it feels like it but it does get better, honestly.

I think just take queues from your little man, that is what we did, not on purpose but she is the boss after all DD would never have a dummy, is a thumb sucker so never had the dummy retreival issue, is there a way maybe of losing the dummy, i dont have experience of this so i might be asking a lot here. That way, once he is happy without it, he may sleep better.

Sorry, not much help just empathy

samandella Mon 30-Jul-07 16:17:19

It sounds horrid and I understand. Both my children are very stubborn and want there own way. Im afraid the only way is to be strong. My son we pandered to when he finally got to 2yrs and at 8 he still will not go to sleep on his own. My daughter we did the cc at almost 2 and now at 4 she is and has been a complete dream at bedtimes. We put her to bed say goodnight and turn the light out and she goes straight to sleep. There is no comparison between them. We were just stronger the second time around.

samandella Mon 30-Jul-07 16:21:38

Sorry I also meant to say that I believe sleep induces sleep, but perhaps try reducing his nap during the day slightly. Also have you tried those contraptions that secure the dummy to a clip that can be attached to the childs clothing or pillow. This may help him to find it on his own.

juuule Mon 30-Jul-07 16:33:28

We, too, thought we'd 'got the hang of this sleeping stuff' with our second child. Not too bad with the third (good sleeper at night but oh lord was she a whirlwind in the day). Then we had our fourth - another one who was a night-owl. So, don't be disheartened if all the things recommended don't work for your ds. Hopefully, something will but I think sometimes it's a case of waiting it out and incorporating night time waking into your 24hr plan.
Cutting down on daytime naps didn't work with them either. Just made them overtired and the night-times would be worse. Eldest would always wake at the same time regardless of naps,no naps, late night, early night. Just meant he was in a bad mood up to his next sleep.
Just keep in mind that it doesn't last forever(no help when it feels like it at the time, I know), it will pass.

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