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Baby can't fall asleep on his own

(8 Posts)
Cline Tue 04-Oct-11 20:23:59

Hi all
I have a 14 week old boy who will only fall asleep if he is bounced in his chair or rocked for a very long period of time or also by sucking the bottle. This makes it very hard if I am out at someone elses house,I have to resort to taking his chair with me or else he cries for ages while I try and rock him to sleep. As he sucks on a bottle to sleep I have tried giving him a dummy but he isn't interested in it. I really don't feel comfortable leaving him to cry,does anyone have any suggestions or been in a similar situation? Do you think he might grow out of it? Thank you

beetlebat Tue 04-Oct-11 20:54:27

This won't be of much comfort, but I don't think your DS is at all unusual. In fact, I know of a fair few 12-18 mth olds that have always and still need help of some sort to self settle. Until recently I was the cocky mother of a 16 mth old who had self settled (without ever being left to cry) from a few weeks of age so I thought it was all really easy!. However she has now decided she needs company to go to sleep so it's egg on face time now. I can only advise to keep doing what you're doing but gradually try to reduce the amount of help you give over time. I also would never leave a baby this young (or of any age, but many would disagree) to cry themselves to sleep.

Beaurevage Tue 04-Oct-11 21:09:59

Till about 3 months (or when all the visitors finally went home) our DS could only fall asleep if someone was holding him. This carried on for a little while when it was just me at home with him during the day (as I enjoyed it!!).

But slowly I started to want some more time to myself, so I started to put him in his crib more and more often. I would have to wait till he was sound asleep at first. Then I slowly started to put him down sooner and sooner till the point where his eyes had only just closed. It took about a month.

Then (and still really blush) I started to put him down when he was still awake. We're still working on it (now 6.5 mths) but he's getting much better and I'd say 50% of the time he'll settle himself to sleep.

Beaurevage Tue 04-Oct-11 21:10:40

Oh, and I'm not one for crying to sleep either....but then maybe I just haven't been pushed far enough...

RandomMess Tue 04-Oct-11 21:16:43

I used pick up put down with mine. So rock until he is drowsy/relaxed, put him down in the cot, he cries, you pick him up and rock again until the crying has stopped, but down in cot etc etc etc

It takes time and persistance but I approached it from the point of view that baby needed to learn it was okay to be tired yet awake in the cot, that they were safe and if they did cry someone would appear! On my 5 day old baby it worked in one day but the older they are the longer it will take.

The problem with rocking etc is eventually they get to heavy to do it!

AngelDog Wed 05-Oct-11 09:48:31

I agree with previous posters - it's totally normal.

I still rock my 2.5 stone 21 month old to sleep - I use a rocking chair so his weight isn't a problem. I mostly feed him to sleep though but I rock him when it doesn't work.

Pick up put down isn't recommended for babies under 3/4 months, and for some babies not until 5 or 6 months. It comes from the baby whisperer so I'd recommend reading up about it properly if you want to consider it. Some children get increasingly distressed by it though.

You could try getting him to sleep after a shorter time awake as once babies are overtired they really struggle to sleep. Most can only stay awake about 1.5-2 hours at that age.

NinkyNonker Thu 06-Oct-11 19:21:08

I still rock my 14 month old to sleep, happily. Very normal.

RitaMorgan Thu 06-Oct-11 19:26:59

I did pick-up/put-down when ds was about 5-6 months, but he still needed to be sshed and patted to sleep in his cot for a while after that. He wasn't reliably falling asleep without help til he was about 9 months old - and even now sometimes needs help at 14 months.

At 3 months old though he was definitely only falling asleep if fed or prammed/slinged!

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