Looking for someone like me!(34 Posts)
I am a thirty year old mother of a lovely 10 week old boy and I can't find anyone like me.
My husband and I are very fortunate that our son sleeps very well, he has slept through the night since 5 and a half weeks (on thevery rare occaision that he now wakes earlier than 6am I give him a dummy and he settles very quickly) and has 2 three hour and 2 two hour naps a day. I have followed the advice given by the baby whisperer and after feeding and changing either my husband or I will play with him untill he shows signs of tiredness (usually about 30 mins). Occaisionally he will cry between feeds for a few mins and we leave him to soothe himself - when I know he is warm and safe and isn't hungry then I will leave him for up to 20 mins. Sometimes I worry that I'm doing the wrong thing, but he seems very content and is growing very well.
I dont want to keep him awake for longer as this makes him over tired and whilst I show him high contrast books, read and sing to him etc, I dont use other toys as I don't want to overstimulate him. I am aware that there is so much information that he has to assimilate every time he opens his eyes that at the moment simply calmly looking around the room is enough to entertain him.
All the other ladies with babies who I have met through NCT or prenatal yoga seem to feed completely on demand and because we are using different parenting methods and ideas I feel I dont have a lot in common with them. When we meet up they talk about nothing but their babies, and I would like to talk about my other interests as well and actually use my brain again - its therefore great when I meet up with my childless friends.
I love my baby very much and do all I can for him, the way I do it is just very different from all parents I already know. Please if you have similar parenting methods or ideas please get in touch. I need reasurance that Im not completely alone in what I am doing.
Thanks, I look forward to hearing from you.
Lots of people like routine and it's good that you have found something that works for you. But i would not be comfortable with leaving a ten week old baby to cry for twenty minutes.
Re meeting other mums i found it took a while, trying different groups, to find like minded ones.
I wouldn't leave such a young baby to cry for that long. They can't talk (obviously) so crying is their only way to communicate with you. In my experience babies who sleep through at such a young age (like my dd1) often flip when for example they start teething and are up all night so I would be prepared for change if I was you!
I threw out all of the books, never joined NCT, went on gut instinct and felt pretty left out; but I wouldn't leave a 10 week old to cry. 10 months, yes, but at 10 weeks babies have absolutely no sense of separation from the mother, and no sense of time. For all intents and purposes, you have disappeared as far as he is aware.
That aside, I hope you find some like-minded mothers soon.
If you're not judging them they they shouldn't be judging you. One of the stages of making friends with other parenting is accepting you do things differently but still supporting and being friendly with each other. Then enjoy the emotional connection with other people.
Just don't go round telling people that the reason your DC is so easy is because you used those methods and you'll be fine. Also be aware that babies have a habbit of changing.
Well it's your call about whether you leave a baby to cry or not. But I wonder if part of your issue is that you are focusing on quite a small 'window of opportunity' for getting to know other mums. Though naps and sleep can seem like the be all and end all when a baby is tiny, actually these things are surely not what define a child, or a parent. They can feel all-consuming at the time (and perhaps the reason the other mums seem so obsessed is because they are struggling with sleep etc whereas you have been lucky) but quickly they fade into the background as a million other things come to the fore. And I think if you'r coming at this from the point of view that your child sleeps x hours a night and keeps to a strict routine, and only looking for other people who meet this criteria, you're limiting yourself, frankly. What about all the things you DO have in common with other mums? The experience of becoming a mother, the challenges and joys of watching your baby's personality (not just their sleeping habits!) develop and grow? I've got several mum friends and we all have very different babies and various parenting 'styles' if you want to call it that. It's no barrier to our friendship. And as the months have passed our conversations have widened much farther to include interests, work etc.
Gosh, I don't want to seem rude but how can you bear to leave your ten week old baby crying for you for twenty minutes? Please don't do that. Routine is great if that's what you want, but I don't think ten week olds should be left crying for their mum. It's cruel.
Personally I think you sound very in control of the situation and are doing what feels right for you.
I hope you find some other local people to share this time with but it sounds like you would actually benefit most from being with people who don't have young children and this is all we want to talk about. Finding other stuff to talk to my Mummy friends about is quite hard.
My son is 7 weeks old and I regularly meet with the mums from my antenatal class - at the moment pretty much all we talk about is babies, me included, but I think that's because firstly we're all very new mums and just for the moment babies are taking up most of our head space, and secondly because we don't know each other that well yet and it's the easiest subject. I'm sure it will change as we go on. Maybe consider sticking with your group for a while to see if things get better? I'm sure other mums in the group will also want to talk about something other than babies soon.
Thank you for the comments and helpful advice. I think that sme of what I had said may have been taken wrongly. I know I'm not being creul, the twenty minutes I refered to is for when he fusses on and off, if he cries properly (which is now rare) I go straight to him. He soothes his self very well and this is what I want to encourage, but if I think there is something wrong I go straight to him.
I now wish I hadn't written things as I did. I just sat down and typed the words just flowed and I pressed post before I had read it through and thought about it properly. I guess I was just wanting to speak about what I do to see if anyone understands where I am coming from (not necessarily does the same thing). I feel really lonely in this as everyone I speak to seems to have a different attitude. We are just doing what works for us and our son. I know I have been lucky with his sleeping and I know that its not just down to the routine.
I really hadn't thought through what I wanted to say, I really wanted to find out if anyone else had found the baby whisperer method sucessful. I also didn't mean to offend anyone, the ladies in my NCT group really are lovely and I do like talking about babies with other mothers but I also want to discuss other things as well.
Thanks again for your suggestions.
Hi, Just wanted to say that our baby is sleeping well at the moment without any input from us. DS2 slept very little til he was about 3yo (I'm talking 3.4 hrs out of 24!) and I very nearly went crazy through sleep deprivation so when DS3 was born 5 month ago I was prepared for more of the same. Amazingly he seems to have settled into a routine of his own that involves waking at 6am for a BF then a long morning nap. Lots of fun in the middle of the day, An afternoon nap around 3pm til 5 and bed at 9pm. I guess he's just a very easy baby but I am aware that this could change at any time. Just like your little one, count your blessings while you have them! This time next month he may be nocturnal little screamer!
3*to*4, not 3.4 which makes it look like I was timing him or something!
you might find that they begin to discuss others things once the babies are a little older. At this age it can, for most mothers, be incredibly intense still.
I found that until I got to know the other mothers properly, all we talked about was babies (some still do). But it takes a while to get to know each other, if you go out for a night out without the babies you will probably end up talking of other things. You are lucky with his sleeping! My baby slept all the time at 1st, I had didn't read the baby whisperer till she was 3 months, by then she stopped sleeping all the time so I thought I had done it all wrong! Try not to go insane and think he needs weaning when he is 4 months old and stops sleeping...!
I think these books (baby whisperer etc) are fine for reading, thinking about, looking for ideas, trying some of the stuff . . . but I don't think you necessarily need to follow them to the letter. Sorry if this sounds negative and not the advice you are after, it's just that I know a lot of people who have followed them and regret it later for various reasons.
As for the friends thing, it doesn't matter when you are meeting people which way you are each bringing up your babies. You shouldn't rule people out because they aren't also following the same book as you. And yes new mums talk about their babies at first because it's an enormous life change and way to start a conversation, but as the friendships develop and trust is built the conversation will go to other things.
tbh, i don't want to sound too critical, but i wouldn't leave a baby who is essentially still in the new born phase, to "fuss" for twenty minutes either.
They have the whole of their life to learn to "self sooth" but you never ever get another chance to show a newborn it is loved and build security.
Maybe read up on attachment theory. Try "why love matters" (haven't read it but heard good things) or something more evidence based than the baby whisperer.
attachment theory? because he believes in self soothing for a little bit?
she isn't running an overstuffed romanian orphanage ffs.
op, maybe a quick namechange (name/number to something else) and a new thread with 'anyone like the baby whisperer?' might attract less criticism.
there are as many ways to raise a baby as there are babies, thankfully. at the moment you sound fine, and both you and he seem to have found something that suits you. all good.
baby-rearing fashions change. i fully expect a backlash re the entire demand-led experience any year now.
fwiw, my three were demand-led, but every mum has to work out what suits her and her child. without the well-meaning interfering. it's a shame that you've got the same response on here that you get in rl.
mine are way too old for us to be baby buddies, but there's tons more going on on mn than baby-rearing, so you can avoid the subject and get stuck in to any subject you like, really. enjoy.
I think you've unfairly got harsher than expected responses. There are a lot of routine led, baby whisperer or GF fans on this site so don't worry (they just don't hang out on the parenting board).
One problem with your way of doing things may be that you are dependent on being at home a lot of the time. When my 3 kids were babies I took them everywhere and was constantly out of the house. Babies don't get "overtired" usually; they just fall asleep when they need to, unless you have made them dependant on having exactly the right situation/ lighting/ quiet etc. I think it can be very lonely having little children if it isolates you, so take him out visiting and don't let the visits centre on him and his exact needs. Then you can spend time with lots of different people, and you may be lucky and meet like minded mothers.
Madwoman when i had ds, and friends had their lo's, we got lots of comments along the "rod for your own back" line. Ie, leave the lo alone so they get used to it / learn to self settle etc.
This didn't feel right to me and i now know why as i have done more reading.
Ime there is alot of bs put about about not making bad habits etc and imo a lot of this contradicts the evidence for what is in the lo's best long term interest.
Yes there have been fashions i agree. That's why i suggest the op look for something more evidence based.
She said in her op that she wasn't sure she was doing the right thing.
My friend said almost exactly those words to me. Her dm had told her not to pick up her lo. She was looking to me to essentialy give her permission to pick up her own baby!
I happen to believe attachment theory is relevant to all human infants. It's not about avoiding neglect like romanian orphanages, but about laying the foundations for happy secure adults. As we aren't born knowing about it, it's rarely taught in school and goes against prevelant, old fashioned parenting techniques, i suggested the op might want to look at it. It's not the personal slight you seem to think it is.
Moonface I happen to agree with you fully there. I hate the parenting should be instinct brigade as I feel that just means you become you're own parents and don't think about the consequences of your actions
OP I hope you start other more specific titled threads to get some feedback on other questions you had in your post.
As you baby ages the topic in groups will move away as people become more confident. To start with mothers are normally looking for confirmation of their feelings and babies actions. If you joined a bump and baby class there is normally more general chit chat, or you could look at baby friendly exercise classes. They are so portable at this age. I took DD to the climbing wall when it was quiet and just chatted/pretended to climb until she woke up (car journey took her off). Then a cup of tea and headed home.
Congratulations on your little boy! I'm so pleased that things are going well for you. Generally speaking I reckon that as a parent you make the best decisions you can and don't be made to feel guilty if anyone else is doing it differently.
However this doesn't mean closing yourself off from other views - there is no one right way to parent your child just the best way you have found so far. You are still a very new parent and as some of the other posters have indicated the only thing certain about children is that shortly everything one is doing will be redundant because they'll grow a bit and everything will change again!
Groups of women (esp new mums) can be extremely competitive and vocal about their own views of parenting. I would stick with your group though, it is good to have the support of people going through the same things at the same time. Choices about sleep and routine will be irrelevant as they get older so stick with it.
One final comment, IME the effectiveness of a particular parentling style or method is largely to do with the personality of the child in question. I have twins - the baby whisperer worked pretty well for my Dd, for my DS... well lets just say he clearly hadn't read the book.
If it was as easy as just doing things a certain way then there would be no sleep deprived mothers. If you go on to have more children you may find this out - several of my friends got a bit of a shock on having number 2 when they discovered that it wasn't their superb parenting skills that had led to an easy baby first time round but rather the reverse...!
Just wanted to say that it sounds like you are doing really well. We are in a similar situation, we have quite a good routine going with our 14 week DD. She settled into her own routine and we have adjusted it slightly. Our DD goes down around 7pm, dreamfeeds at 1030 then sleeps through till I wake her at 7-730am.
I also find some of the ladies at NCT can talk endlessly about their babies. However, its slowly getting better and I'm looking forward to an NCT girls night out next week. Some of them are ultra-concerned about everything whereas I'm a bit more laid back so sometimes I get bored during our weekly meetings but its just lovely to get out the house. I get on particularly well with one of the girls and see her much more regularly. We have met some other lovely mums through other things so I recommend getting out and about as much as possible and you will soon meet a likeminded circle of friends!
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