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Be honest with me - if you did all the feeding-to-sleep, co-sleeping, napping-in-buggy things did you indeed Make a Rod for yourself?

(34 Posts)
artifarti Tue 11-Dec-12 20:31:26

That's it really. With DS1 we did a bit of gentle shush-patt and he would nap and fall asleep on his own in his cot, slept through from 7 months and we never felt the need to co-sleep. With DS2 (8 months) it's a different story and I am so knackered/desperate that he spends half the night in my bed guzzling away and has to be pushed round the block to nap (fortunately once he's asleep I can wheel him home and park him up so that's not a big issue). I am starting to wonder though how and when I will be able to get my bed back and whether he will start to settle himself without my boobs (we do manage to get him to sleep without sometimes but he is still pretty obsessed!).

So, if you co-slept and fed/rocked/pushed to sleep, did your DC settle themselves in the end on their own or did you Make a Rod for Your Own Back and have to do something to get them to sleep through the night/in their own cot?

mrscrimbobash Tue 11-Dec-12 20:45:31

It was a nightmare to go from feed sleeping/co sleeping to weaning and solitary sleep. I'm not going to lie, but it was SO worth it just to get some sleep when DD was smaller.

Can you bring the cot to your room so that they are within reach?

TheOldestCat Tue 11-Dec-12 20:48:44

Mine both went fairly smoothly from co-sleeping for the first few months then feeding to sleep at 18 months to settling themselves. In fact, stopping feeding then was the only thing that worked - tried to do shush-pat before that and it didn't work.

So glad I ignored the Rodders! But I was happy to co-sleep and feed to sleep until they were toddlers (no ideology - it was just the laziest option for me to enable sleep which I needed as I was working full-time with DD and part-time with DS).

tasmaniandevilchaser Tue 11-Dec-12 20:49:05

DD naturally grew out of feeding to sleep by about 8 mths. We did have to work at sleeping alone a bit. But she stopped having naps at 18 mths, so napping in buggy became a non- issue.

I'd just do what keeps you sane, you can always change plans later. It might be some work but deal with it when you've got more energy.

Themobstersknife Tue 11-Dec-12 20:52:56

Agree with Tasmanian Devil. I was given advice by a friend when I had DD1 to say just do whatever you can to stay sane, as long as it is safe! I did all of the above things with DD1 and she learnt to self settle brilliantly. On the other hand, DD2 was a good settler early on so I did none of those things with her, and she is now a complete nightmare. Do what you need to do to get through the day, and enjoy your baby!

breatheslowly Tue 11-Dec-12 20:53:30

Co-sleep to sleeping on her own was fine with DD, but she was FF which probably makes a bit of a difference.

Rocking to sleep was a bit of a mistake as it wasn't until about 16 months that we thought to try controlled crying as it was taking 1 hour of holding her to get her to sleep. The controlled crying took less than a week and we did 2 min, 3min etc and she was asleep by 6 or 7 min the first night, dropping away to no crying within the week, so we did regret that we didn't try it early.

Napping in her buggy (with lots of rocking) was also a bit of a mistake as we didn't like to rock the boat and get her to nap in her bed/cot but actually took to it really well when we tried.

So none of it was a rod for our own backs so much as not trying more convienient alternatives and sticking with them for a week to get DD to change.

monstermissy Tue 11-Dec-12 20:55:53

When it comes to small children and me sleeping, i do whatever gets me the most sleep and deal with the rest later.

A couple of mine have gone from co-sleeping to sorting themselves out well, ds1 was in my bed alot but it really never bothered me tbh. Hes 16 now and you will be happy to know he never sleeps in my bed now smile Do whatever is right for you and yours.

iwillsleepagainsomeday Tue 11-Dec-12 20:55:58

depends on how you see it.

with DD1 I tried not to give in (mainly due to social pressure) and went crazy from sleep deprivation and frustration when she didn't go off to sleep without the breast or "as the manuals say". Managed to get to 18months bf which was fine. She started sleeping better but only sleeps really well since she turned more or less 2.

with DD2 I couldn't care less about social pressure. he slept in my bed for at least the first year and was bf well over 2yold. I slept a whole lot more with him as I didn't have to sit up and try to get him back to sleep. He also started to sleep well from about 2,5

neither of them ever took a pacifier or a bottle. Both started fulltime daycare (8am to 4pm) at 6 months without problems as that was the time they started eating solids during the day (they would then "recuperate" during the rest of the evening and night).

both are very happy and independent children. I do not regret having given in to them at times. They still are very cuddly and "physical" kids with me. I couldn't have done it otherwise. Or actually I should have done even more "creating a rod" with DD1 as I might have suffered more from my "failures to follow how things should be done"-

BertieBotts Tue 11-Dec-12 20:56:17

I think it depends on what your expectations are really.

I'm really laid back so although DS's dates for sleeping alone, sleeping through, self settling, stopping breastfeeding etc were later than some (most?) people would be happy with, it worked for me and I was happy to let him get there in his own time.

Also bear in mind my laid-back nature was probably a factor in these taking longer as I've never really gone with anything more than gentle suggestion - perhaps DS could have been persuaded to reach these milestones earlier, I just didn't see the need.

If you're interested, he fed to sleep always until he was 1, and then usually fed before sleep (coming off the breast to fall asleep) until he stopped recently (at 4). He went to sleep fine for babysitters from about 18 months or so, reliably.

Went into own bed at 2.2. Slept through reliably at 2.5. Has only just started being happy with being left alone to fall asleep at 4.

That sounds horrendous grin but for me it wasn't, I didn't mind lying with him until he fell asleep, apart from a couple of bad patches, it's never taken long, max 20 minutes or so? The co-sleeping wasn't an issue for me, and the night wakings were easy because of co-sleeping. When he went into his own bed he tended to either come in with me, or after a few weeks his one and only wake up was before I went to bed anyway, so it didn't disturb my sleep.

GwendolineMaryLacedwithBrandy Tue 11-Dec-12 20:57:50

I have two 'rods' aged 4.11 and 11 months. If anyone knows how to get them out of my bed...?

TwoHats Tue 11-Dec-12 20:58:19

DS1 - around 18/20 months went from co-sleeping to his own bed in his own room with no fuss at all. Around the same age I also stopped cuddling/buggy for all naps, I was able to just tuck him in and leave him to it.

DS2 - is nearly 2 and I have no idea how he'll take it when we stop. Something tells me it will be much harder though, which is why we haven't tried yet.

iwillsleepagainsomeday Tue 11-Dec-12 20:58:30

*I might have suffered LESS from my failures

RufousBartleby Tue 11-Dec-12 21:00:29

Relax OP - you will be fine!

I did all the 'wrong' things just to get some rest/keep my sanity. Some wise MNetters told me to get a cot bed and shove it up next to my bed so I could get some rest, and it turned out to be absolutely brilliant. He is now 30 months and settles to sleep without cuddles/feeding/terrible crying. Its almost like he's just got to the age where he can self-settle and is fine.

The only thing I wish is that someone had told me not to worry and that it would all work out fine and I wouldn't be causing myself long term problems: so let me say to you OP 'You are not setting yourself up for difficulties you are sensibly doing what you need to do to keep sane and rested!'

UnnamedFemaleProtagonist Tue 11-Dec-12 21:01:35

*looks at sleeping 6 year old next to me.
*yes reader, that is six YEARS old.

GwendolineMaryLacedwithBrandy Tue 11-Dec-12 21:07:46

Yay I don't have the oldest co sleeper!

UnacceptableAmountOfSherry Tue 11-Dec-12 21:31:42

artifarti Are you asking because you are worried about potential problems or are you asking because you have had enough and want to move DS on to a bit of independence and want a few tips?
If you are ok with him being in your own bed then I wouldn't worry too much and you could start to wean him off the breast now if it's wearing you out.

I'm not sure I believe that you can make a rod for your own back. I think each child has different needs and some are just 'easier' than others.

I didn't make any rods.

I absolutely 'spoiled' hmm my DC. I did what I felt was easiest and what they seemed to require at the time.

DS1 fed to sleep, co-slept till he got bored with me!
DS2 fed to sleep, buggy napped, minimal co-sleeping possibly due to DS1 being in bed
DS3 fed to sleep, co-slept, napped in buggy/car/arms, spent lots of early toddler hood wrapped around my leg
DD combination of all of the above although she settled better on her own so the co-sleeping didn't happen much.

No problems with getting them weaned or into their own beds when time was right. All very settled secure children.

DS4 whole different ball game. He is very demanding, very hard work. I did the 'whatever' approach with him too and the other children are now older so he's had the opportunity for more 1-1 than any of them.

I stopped breast feeding at around the age of 1 (in part due to him being demanding) and he was fine when I stopped but I had thought he would be difficult. Bedtime has not been so easy. He is finally getting the hang of his own bed (aged 3)

I'm sure it's a personality thing though rather than anything you do/don't allow.

Rhubarbgarden Tue 11-Dec-12 21:32:35

With dd I was v v strict about self settling, never fed her to sleep and did all the text book stuff because I had no idea how babies worked and following a book to the letter worked for me. She slept through from 5 weeks and has always been an excellent sleeper and very independent child.

With ds, I've been rather slack. Dealing with a baby and a toddler is so full on, plus I feel like I know what I'm doing this time around so I'm winging it more instead of referring to Gina constantly. As a result, he's in our bed a lot, because it's easier than all that settling faff. It's laziness really. And it's turning rapidly into a rod - he's starting to expect to be brought into our bed every time he wakes now. Like you, I'm going to have to do something soon...

cowardlylionhere Tue 11-Dec-12 21:43:25

arti, we have dc the same age, we went overdue together! My ds is also 8 mo and I was beginning to think I was making that rod. But actually, on the advice of others, I moved his cot out of my room 2 nights ago and he's pretty much slept right through the night both times. When he was in my room, we would disturb each other, and I would go and get him at the slightest noise and feeed him, which would inevitably end up with me feeding him in bed and him staying attatched what felt like all night. it got to feel a bit stifling to be honest. He's only in the next room and so far I'm not actually getting any more sleep because I'm awake listening out for him, but it's been remarkably easy <touchwood> so far. He's the same for naps though, but I time our outings to coincide with when he needs one. Ds is dc 3 and all of mine have slept much easier in their buggies during the day, I'm just not good enough at routines to get them used to being in their cots in the day. As far as feeding goes, ds has suddenly really got the hand of blw, and that's going brilliantly. I do think his sleeping longer at night is due in no small part to his new found love of potatoes at teatime...Is ds on any solids at all? I know I felt with my last ds that establishing bfing wasn't the problem for me, it was the cutting down, and I'm findign that a bit this time too. 2 nights ago i was convinced I had masitis coming my way as ds didn't feed all night and my norks were like boulders. I've not been great with expressing and in fact haven't bothered for a long time, but I think I'm going to go to bed armed with the pump in the room for any emergencies- the last thing I need is mastitis, I have had it twice with both previous dc and it's not nice. But you have my sympathy, it's tough. But you must do what you feel is right. I was so against moving ds out of my room, the people who all suggested it are the older generations of my family who are all horrified that he doesn't sleeop through, so I'd nbever tell them that we cosleep as well, but actually, having tried it, it's working for us. I may even get to sleep tonight knowing ds is fine. I might give him a dreamfeed when I go up and then hopefully we'll both be settled for the night. He's been a different baby these last few days, presumably because he's getting more sleep.

PacificDogwood Tue 11-Dec-12 21:49:17

Rods, Schmods - bollocks to that grin.

DS1 was a Screamer and turned me into a far more hippy earth mother than I ever intended to be just to Shut Him Up - BFing on demand, sling every upright hour, co-sleeping, praming to sleep etc etc.

DS2 had to teach us to Leave Him Alone - he did not want to be held/rocked/fed to sleep. Poor child had a hard time training his thick parents.

DS3 and 4 were more 'normal' - whatever that is - but certainly not so extremely different in their personalities as they older brothers were and ARE.

So much depends on a baby's personality - I wish somebody had told me that when I was stressing about doing The Right Thing: go with the flow, do whatever works and by the time they are 16 they will no longer sleep in your bed/need to be fed to sleep or anything else - and chances are they will even be potty trained by then!

Stress not, OP, all will be well smile.

PacificDogwood Tue 11-Dec-12 21:53:20

Parents' personalities differ as well of course - a Rod is only a Rod if it bothers you.
If you hate co-sleeping, consider what changes you can make.
If you like it, why do you have to change anything at all??

Smudging Tue 11-Dec-12 21:57:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

EdithWeston Tue 11-Dec-12 22:01:22

So much depends on the baby.

Both DS were fine about learning to sleep through when they became mobile and I decided to move them out of our bed (only took a couple of nights and slept through well). DD, the youngest and who had had much the same hippyish early months was an absolute monster and it took months to get her to sleep well separately. And yes, it did feel like a rod at times.

rrreow Tue 11-Dec-12 22:07:18

Nope. I mean, in my opinion you're creating a rod for your own back in the present while keep trying to do something that isn't working (e.g. put a baby in a cot who just doesn't want to be there) just because of some notion about what's supposed to be 'right'.

Co-slept with DS (now 19m) until he was about 12m. It totally worked for us because he would SLEEP. Especially in the early days it would allow him to do 4 hour stretches which is pretty rare for young babies and I really think it was the co-sleeping that helped him do it. At a certain point we wanted our bed back (especially as he started to wriggle so much and keep us awake - I mean the whole reason for co-sleeping was for everyone to get sleep, so when that was out the window we needed a different plan) so we tackled the sleep when he was 12m.

Probably took about a month to get him into his cot properly (minor set back when he had chicken pox and was in our bed). His cot was right next to our bed. At that point we really worked on his naps as well which helped with bedtime sleep. In terms of actually getting him to sleep in his cot I used the tips in this thread:

At this point in time he is occasionally in our bed (when he is very poorly - he had hand, foot & mouth a while back and was just so miserable - he didn't actually sleep much but at least he felt comforted which was important to me) but every time it happens (maybe once a month) it never means there is any 'regression' (as much as I fear it).

artifarti Tue 11-Dec-12 22:19:24

Thanks everyone smile. A mixed bag of responses, as you would expect. I don't think I am stressing about it at the moment but I also don't think I want to still be BFing and/or co-sleeping at 2 etc. I gave up BFing DS1 at 14 months and suspect I will go to similar with DS2. He is on solids and eats like a piglet so I don't think it's a big hunger issue (although I know it's not unusual for babies to still feed at this age!) but it's very much comfort and habit. He is not at all mobile though which someone mentioned, he's a big shuffling lump, bless him! His cot is in the room next door and he tends to start off in there and then migrate at some point between 10pm and 5am!

cowardlylion - were we on the same whingy overdue thread then?! Have you namechanged?!

Ah, speak of the devil, there he is, waking up again (cold and teething at the moment so no chance whatsoever of sleeping through or sleeping on his own!)

QTPie Tue 11-Dec-12 22:24:47

I fed to sleep (breastfeeding) for 11/12 months, DS napped in buggy between 6 and 14 months. Didn't co-sleep. We did have him on a routine from 3/5 weeks and that was important to me.

Honestly, no "rod for own back" here. Yes, we had to work at settling in the cot (back patting, hand holding until 19 months when we used "Sleep Seperation" technique to edge away and out of the room). DS is the most confident, independent toddler (almost 3 years). However, he is an adaptable childbirth- so we may be lucky (who knows...)

Do what works for you and what you are comfortable with. When the time comes (and you need to change things or want to change things), then work gently but firmly to change things.

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