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How to reduce stress response to 14wko

(33 Posts)
Cosmo89 Thu 27-Sep-12 04:24:25

DS is loud. Very loud. Always has been.

When he cries, he yells full throttle, and it goes right through me. I obviously try and avoid him crying but I can't avoid them completely. He fights sleeP - yells instead. He hates the buggy now - yells when we're moving about. I'm not saying he cries all the time, but enough and intensely- its the no-one looks at u on a train kind of cry/ someone comes up to you to tell u what's wrong with ur baby (and everyone seems to know- usually (actually!) he's just tired)

Im starting to feel constantly on edge, I've got that rush of adrenalin always rushing through me ll the time. DM says he picks up in my anxiety but I don't know how I can reduce it. At night now, DP has had to settle him a few times because I get so stressed when my efforts to get him back to sleep fail. Even when I do settle him, I can't get back to sleep because I feel so anxious.

What's wrong with me? How can I sort this- part of me thinks it's unsortable without some good time off- not happening!

MyGoldenNotebook Thu 27-Sep-12 09:54:32

Well I'm not an expert, and I don't have a magic cure, but what I do have is a 14 week of DD who is just like your DS so I can sympathise smile

For me, I find music helps. My DD and I are enjoying Corrine Bailey Rae and Miles Davies at the moment. It certainly helps me to calm down a little. My DD also enjoys baby massage ... when she's in the mood! Or taking a bath together. It breaks the day up a bit too. Also, boring as it is, not expecting too much from the day and not putting any pressure on myself to get a certain amount of things done or even to go out much. We both know that this stage will not last forever. It sounds like you DH is very supportive so maybe he would give you a bit of 'time off' in the evening so you could have a bath and listen to the radio? Just a bit of space works wonders.

It's very hard when you're not getting a lot of sleep. I felt so grumpy this morning I could have screamed and there she was whinging away. It's hard. I think this must be a difficult time for them too as they're becoming so much more alert and yet they can't do anything. It's also one of those classic growth spurt ages too.

To quote an old mumsnet saying 'this too will pass' - take the pleasure that is there and don't worry too much about the rest. You sound like a really caring mum, your DS is very lucky smile

Cosmo89 Thu 27-Sep-12 13:56:26

yeah - I kind of think he's in a developmental phase at the moment- seems ultra ratty and clingy, wants to feed more often etc. I think he's more affected by hte buggy because he is more stimulated by the noise/images he hears/sees than he was. So he finds it uncomfortable and a bit weird.

I do worry about it though - I'm constantly on edge, wired. Last night I felt a surge of anger (as he was clawing at my neck whilst I was trying to settle him) and had to put him down in his cot - then went back into the bedroom and collapsed in tears.

It's not PND, just lack of sleep and him going through a testing time, but I feel ashamed of myself that I felt so violently (in the sense of the extreme nature of the emotion) angry towards him.

And I don't find the joy really - I love ds to pieces but I don't like my life in this early baby phase. So much so that I'm sneakily looking at our finances, wondering whether we couldn't put forward him going to nursery to 9-10 months instead of a year.

Isnt' that awful? DP would be so much better at this than I am. He's got much more patience and isn't so sensitive.

Rubirosa Thu 27-Sep-12 13:58:56

Have you trued using a sling at all?

Cosmo89 Thu 27-Sep-12 14:56:18

Yes. Hates it - more of a kick around baby.

Had to just leave him to scream because I couldn't do it
Feel awful about it

EBDTeacher Thu 27-Sep-12 15:01:10

A friend of mine found that she was quite noise sensitive to her DS crying. He had reflux so he cried a lot and sometimes there just wasn't anything she could do to console him (poor mite- it was eventually solved with medication).

She actually bought building site type ear defenders and would then go about her housework etc with him in a sling! She said it helped her a bit (at home obviously- she never went as far as wearing her head gear in Tesco).

McPhee Thu 27-Sep-12 15:08:54

I think you have my Dds twin.....she's 12 weeks and exactly the same as your Ds. She is ultra physical, shouts at you, and pretty much everything you have described. And her screaming/crying can be heard from space blush

And if we're being honest here, it makes me feel very uptight, stressed, like I'm doing something wrong. Yesterday I got so stressed about it, because I'm always feeling on edge, that I cried about peeling potatoes hmm

Cosmo89 Thu 27-Sep-12 16:02:52

They. Must. Never. Meet.


I don't know what to think really. I have a very irritating, smug friend, with a dopey calm baby who's too daft to engage with the world who slept through from birth and who proudly keeps telling me that it's all to do with her 'mindset' during her birth (easy) and after it.

And no, I don't talk to her at the moment.

I really challenge anyone NOT to get anxious in this situation - it makes moving around so much harder, for one thing. My DM says that people aren't judging me on the train etc but, I'm sorry, they blatantly are. I'm getting to the stage with this that I'm not going to go out anymore, which I know will make things worse but at least it limits the screaming somewhat

MyGoldenNotebook Thu 27-Sep-12 16:27:11

Yes - it can make going out difficult. Me and DD go to baby swimming, massage etc and she often cries. I just got it out in the open in the first couple of sessions and explained to the other mums 'She cries a lot - I'm sorry' and everyone has been really understanding. We went to the library today and she cried for most of the visit (one woman did keep giving me dirty looks but I ignored her) but you're right, you can't lock yourself up! I don't go out that much though. All of my baby groups are in the village. You're very brave going off on trains and things. I did that in the first few weeks but looking back I was pushing myself too hard. It's good to be a five / ten minute walk from home.

If you need him to go to nursery earlier than expected that's fine. But having an older DS I can say that babies change very quickly. He could be very settled in a couple of months. He may soon come into his own! And you would have to be a saint to never feel surges of real annoyance when faced with a constantly crying baby. Luckily the thought police do not exist, and it isn't a crime to be finding all this very hard.

Smug mums are the worst - but childhood is long! Her little one will have his / her difficult phase. She is being VERY annoying though. I can never believe some women actually say things like that!

narmada Thu 27-Sep-12 16:33:29

Second the industrial ear defenders. Brutal but if you are cuddling, feeding, bouncing, etc then you are doing all you can do. My baby had reflux too and this was the only way we could cope until the medication kicked in. Poor baby.

Does the crying stop at all when you shove a boob/ bottle/ dummy in his mouth?

One thing I wanted to say is that there is nothing abnormal about how you're feeling when your baby cries. Actually, it's a biological stress response of a mother to her baby's cry. Normal normal normal. But, if you are anxious at other times too then please don't put up with it, go and have a chat with the GP or alternatively (and if you have the energy) get out and do some physical exercise. Appreciate that this is tricky tho with a pram-and sling-resistant baby.

lola88 Thu 27-Sep-12 19:30:30

My DS is the same he's 8 months and such a moaner he spends half the day moaning and crying! I find it helps to rant all the anger away pushing it down doesn't help i txt DP says terrible things like 'this little shit won't bloody go to sleep he won't bloody shut up and give me peace' shocking i know but it makes me feel better. I've got to the point now i'm just used to him a friend told me the other day no way could she cope with her baby if she cried like DS i nearly died laughing because he was having a good day just a bit moany. I think the easiest way to deal with it is just accept your baby is a grump nothing you do will change that it's who they are. when people ask/tell me whats wrong with DS i tell them no he's just a grumpy little shit that usually shuts them up.

DS got a lot better once he could sit up alone then better again when he started moving around now he can crawl (only backwards) and pull himself up he's happier again, most of his problem is he wants to be independant. It's a running Joke at mother and toddlers taking bets to see how long he lasts without a melt down he's started being able to play through the 2 hours without moaning and crying now.

The upside to him wanting to do everything DS has done things a lot quicker than my friends 'angel baby' who's the same age her DD is happy to just sit and let the world go by but DS is much funnier and noisier crawling around backwards shouting at people to talk to him, it makes me feel better that he has his perks too.

lola88 Thu 27-Sep-12 19:45:27

Just seen this

diyqueen Thu 27-Sep-12 21:31:30

I feel for you as I can remember dd being like that (from birth pretty much - she kept the whole ward awake screaming while I tried to persuade her to feed, milk dripping all over her face..) and there is no feeling like it, I used to end up in tears too sometimes. At about that age I can remember spending a whole afternoon trying to get her to stop screaming and feed, dp came home from work to find me sitting half naked under a blanket with dd finally asleep on my chest, I didn't dare move as couldn't face the screaming starting again. She used to scream every time the car stopped at a junction/traffic lights, I'd be gripping the steering wheel with white knuckles...!

I read Dr Sears' 'fussy baby book' and that really helped me to see that it wasn't my inept parenting as I'd thought, but just that she was (is) a sensitive soul. I would say that you don't want to distance yourself, just try to get some perspective - your baby is sensitive and good at expressing their discomfort, you are sleep deprived and shattered and feeling the normal biological response to your baby's cries. Try to see the funny side where you can, and try and imagine how your baby might be seeing the world. And do whatever helps both of you, anything for an easy life, you won't make a rod for your own back whatever anyone says.

It will get easier, either as you get better at dealing with it or as he gets more settled, who knows? Dd is 18mo now and a gorgeous, affectionate, energetic little girl - but my god you know when she's not happy, still! It hasn't been easy and we had different problems as she got older - but I think working through it all has strengthened our bond and I wouldn't change her for the world.

SuperDuperTrooper Fri 28-Sep-12 09:56:47

I'm actually finding it refreshing to hear what some of you have to say about your LO's. I too have a grumpy baby, he is now 9 months old.

At 14 weeks I wouldn't stray more than 5 to 10 minutes from home incase he had a meltdown. I was on eggshells the whole time. This improved a lot and am now happy to be out and about with him as you learn better how to deal with their meltdowns.

At 9 months I still feel I am still on eggshells to a certain extent even though he doesn't actually cry that much now - but boy does he moan and whinge! I have just been searching for a counsellor to help me try and change because I'm fed up of feeling on edge and getting angry over seemingly nothing. I never had much of a temper and now I see red at the flick of a switch. It's scary! I know I would never physically hurt my baby but am worried that my anger and anxieties are affecting him in other ways. I do wish I sought help sooner than this but I thought I'd get over it in time.

People always told me it will get better - and it has. I personally feel I have developed a habit of reacting in this way to him and just feel someone needs to help me to do change this. Counselling, and maybe CBT, are definitely worth a go if you feel you need to change your reactions and thought processes.

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 28-Sep-12 14:21:30

Have you been in touch with Cry-sis. Please have a look at their website, and give them a ring.

My DS was very much like this and would only ever shut up when he'd got my tit in his mouth. It was exhausting.

If you are ff I'd change the formula and if you are bfing I'd speak to a BFC, either in person or on one of the Bfing Helplines.

It will get better, my DS is now a happy and confident 8 year old, but please don't feel that you just have to put up with this. Go to your GP, explain how stressed you are and ask for CBT.

Just out of interest, how was the birth?

colditz Fri 28-Sep-12 14:23:04

Has anyone suggested war plugs?

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 28-Sep-12 14:30:13

Thought you might like this book smile.

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 28-Sep-12 14:30:59

colditz what are war plugs? Are they to stop her falling out with her DH?

Cosmo89 Mon 01-Oct-12 04:41:23

Yes, I'm going to have to do something about it.
Not helping that this past fortnight DS just isn't settling after 2. We've been up for 2.5 hours now and I've just had to leave him- there's nothing I can do. He's ok- not screaming , doing the occasional wail.
I never thought I could leave him but there's nothing else I can do- all out of ideas. He's not hungry. Windy , cold or hot.
Away staying with DP's parents for GP time with DS. DP st home working (getting a break!!! As far as I can see) a d I just want to sob and sob and sob,
I will go to the drs and ask for cbt to help me cope better but, to be honest, it's the situation thsts impossible, with his screaming during the day and not sleeping st night
I hate to say this but right this moment I honestly feel that I wish I'd never had him. And it makes me feel so guilty and so low.

DoubleLifeIsALifeHalved Mon 01-Oct-12 05:10:28

Can you get a night or twos break? Stay with parents or something?

You just sound shattered & on edge & basically at wits end. Poor you.

tootiredtothinkofanickname Mon 01-Oct-12 11:03:01

Poor you. I think the adrenaline rush when you hear him cry is natural, rushing to them when they cry is instinctive, but please don't beat yourself up about him crying when you can do nothing to stop it. The most important thing is that you are comforting him as much as you can. I would take him to the GP for a check, to make sure he doesn't cry because he is in pain (ear infection, teething, reflux or anything else). He might have a big growth spurt and will hopefully become more settled soon. Also, if he is fighting sleep, can you try to get him down by any means before he starts full blown screming?

Ignore your friend, what a load of rubbish!Also, I would recommend reading the Wonder Weeks for detailed info about their growth spurts and how it affects them (and the mums!). Can your DH look after DS alone for a couple of hours at least at the week-end, so you can go out, have a coffee or just a walk in peace? Also, can he give you a lie-in one morning a week? Sleep deprivation is horrible and I sympathise.

narmada Mon 01-Oct-12 13:10:23

oh you poor thing. been there. is awful.

I would rule out the following for him- illness; milk allergy (can affect BF babies) ; reflux. All of these can cause endless screaming, and in my DCs cases it was the last two of these.

narmada Mon 01-Oct-12 13:14:43

ps your smug friend is a tit for saying that. Ilness in babies, or a difficult temperament has been shown to be a causative factor in PND among others. Happened to me.

Cosmo89 Tue 02-Oct-12 11:15:44

thanks everyone.
I'm just so tired it's difficult to make decisions and follow them through. I don't know how to put him down for a nap now, for instance. I was swaddling and doing shush pat (which worked 75% of the time) but I can't do that anymore as I find his raging (which he goes through because he's overtired, as he goes from 0 - 60) too stressful and upsetting. I've tried putting him in the cot, fed, warm and winded, but he cries too. I then go in a pick him up and comfort him, but he's used to going to sleep with help and that's help I can't give him at the moment.
Yesterday I had to leave him raging in his cot for an hour because I was shaking so much and so upset that it was worse for him me being in there. He cried for an hour. Was silent for 30 minutes. I then went back in when he started up again. I have no idea if he slept - probably not.
I never wanted to leave him, never even imagined it, but felt I had no choice - I was paralysed. This wasn't really an attempt on CC - I'm sure that has it's procedures and steps etc that need to be followed - I just couldn't do anything else.

He's started waking for 2.5-3 hours at 2 or 3 am now so as well as getting no sleep in the day, I'm getting none at night. I don't sleep after he finally goes for another good 30 mins (if I'm lucky) or more like over an hour, I'm so wound up.

I feel like I want to find a schedule or routine/method of putting him to sleep that I can follow but don't have any decision making powers that might help me to investigate my options and weigh up the pros and cons.

We were doing reasonably well on an EASY routine (which made sense to me, and wasnt rigid on timings) but I feel I've completely lost any kind of structure or ability to regulate my environment. Don't get me wrong - I don't expect to work to timings and expect behaviour and certain points during the day...But I would like to be able to be able to help him get to sleep when he's tired and feed him within a 2.5 -4 hour window, but still on demand iykwim.

I feel like I'm on the road to PND here, narmada, it's the lowest I've ever felt, both in terms of physical tiredness but also I've completely lost faith in my abilities to do anything. Nothing I do works for him. I'm a complete failure as a mother.

cloudhands Tue 02-Oct-12 11:42:49

it can be so hard to listen to our babies cry sometimes can't it? these new parenting podcasts were a godsend when DD was small, there are quite a few
about how to deal with crying, especially when it triggers your own strong emotions, you are not the first parent to feel like this and you won't be the last! good luck
New Parent Podcasts

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