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high need babies

(45 Posts)
mamawriggles Fri 06-Jun-14 10:26:29

Hi all, new to here came on looking for support / shared experiences of parenting a high need baby. Found an old thread from a few years ago but guessing most may have moved on so thought I'd start my own

I'm not one for giving a baby any label but having been given the dr sears book I think it's fair to say my 5m DD is high needs: terrible sleeper, hates to be left, super nosey, loves being carried in a sling, hates the car seat and pram, feeds frequently day and night.

Anyone else out there?

Koothrapanties Fri 06-Jun-14 11:02:32

I'd say dd is what Dr Sears calls a high needs baby too.

Are you using an AP sort of approach?

Chickz Fri 06-Jun-14 12:46:37

I have high needs too. Can't be left alone, cries and whinges alot. She is 8 months. We have good days and bad days. Thankfully she's quite a good sleeper but her constant attention wanting is so so tough. I can't wait to go back to work in 4 months.

TheJourney22 Fri 06-Jun-14 13:11:55

High Five all!

I have a high needs DS ... from Day 1 has to be constantly held. It sends me nuts but thank god for slings!

I am keen to follow/ support as some days I could run for the hills (I am also a lone parent)

I too can't wait to go back to work shock

buffythebarbieslayer Fri 06-Jun-14 14:31:59

Im on my third high needs baby! Shall we start a support thread?

Will post more later

buffythebarbieslayer Fri 06-Jun-14 17:38:08

I have often cried to dh 'why won't my babies go in prams?'

It sometimes seems others' babies are snoozing in prams and cars, happily sucking a dummy whilst mine will only suck the breast and scream blue murder when put down in prams.

I've carried in slings for many hours, co slept and comfort fed to get me through. It's lovely and natural to be close to your baby but boy can it be draining.

If it's any comfort my older two, now 8 and 5 are very secure, kind and loving children who sleep great. So finally on number three I'm happy to go with it.

A wrap sling has saved me. You can get stuff done with it as well.

I often wonder if my babies are born like this, or have I made them this way?

mamawriggles Fri 06-Jun-14 17:47:31

Hi all, glad to see we are not alone! Buffy you have my upmost respect we have several nights where we have said DD will be our first and last baby if things carry on this way much longer!

Our biggest issue is sleep or rather the lack of it. From day1 DD has been a rubbish sleeper, I thought it would be better by now but still no end in sight!

Yes I'd say we are pretty much using a AP approach although didn't really know what this was or heard the term high need until recently, just doing what felt right or seemed to work! We feed on demand, co sleep and use the sling and lot. Some days I feel like I am attached 24hrs either by boob or carrying

I'd love to hear what you have found works for you all

buffythebarbieslayer Fri 06-Jun-14 17:53:07

Yes to feeling attached 24 hrs! But I promise it won't be forever. Maybe responding to their needs now, makes for very secure children down the line?

Currently sat in my back garden with baby asleep in sling enjoying the sunshine. Enjoy the nice moments, it's those you remember more when they're skipping off to school!

Koothrapanties Fri 06-Jun-14 18:26:35

My saving grace has been the cosatto co sleeper cot. Without it I would have gone mad from sleep deprivation.

I didn't realise I was doing ap either, I just went with my instincts and with dds personality. I just try to be as nurturing as possible and it seems to help the clinginess.

Koothrapanties Fri 06-Jun-14 18:27:39

How old are your dc by the way? Dd is 8mo. I think she is getting slightly easier as time goes by.

mamawriggles Sat 07-Jun-14 19:28:33

We had a bedside crib but it got too small once she started moving round more and rolling. We tried moving her into the cot (still in our room) but I got fed up of getting up so often we just have her in bed with us.

Up until a couple of weeks ago I could put her down at 6.30ish and she would sleep until at least 9.00 without me there but recently she has started waking up after an hour. I used to enjoy a bit of me time on an evening but now l'm constantly having to go back in and settle her. How / when / where do you put your babies to bed?

mamawriggles Sat 07-Jun-14 19:29:08

We had a bedside crib but it got too small once she started moving round more and rolling. We tried moving her into the cot (still in our room) but I got fed up of getting up so often we just have her in bed with us.

Up until a couple of weeks ago I could put her down at 6.30ish and she would sleep until at least 9.00 without me there but recently she has started waking up after an hour. I used to enjoy a bit of me time on an evening but now l'm constantly having to go back in and settle her. How / when / where do you put your babies to bed?

Koothrapanties Sat 07-Jun-14 19:59:08

Dd goes to bed at 8pm and will usually wake once or twice looking for me before I go to bed. She still wakes a few times through the night, but usually settles quite easily. I still feed her to sleep at bedtime though.

lola88 Sat 07-Jun-14 20:48:13

I had a high needs baby who is now a chilled out good natured 2 year old. Could you do a later bed time then co sleep? I used to put DS in the cot then bring him in with us when he got up once he got his single bed at 17mo-ish he stopped wanting to come in with us sometimes I go in with him sometimes he falls right back sleep without me.

I used to dream of going to work then when I went back DS got so much easier and I quit to be with him

GrumbelinaPicklebottom Sat 07-Jun-14 21:17:13

Yes yes, please sign me up for a support thread.

I'm on my second high needs baby (born 18 months after the first! Don't ask how that happened hmm). I thought DS (now 21 months) was demanding but ... Let's just say his 3 month old little sister is much better at getting her needs met. <cough>

To be fair, they both have reflux bad enough to require medication, which hasn't helped much (especially the sleep issues). Still, holding a baby all day, everyday, does get a bit much. Good thing they're somewhat cute, eh?!

I don't have a great deal of support, alas. I am an Aussie, moved to the UK 6 odd years ago but haven't really managed to forge any enduring friendships. All my family are half a world away.

<Please start playing your violins for me now>

Any sling recommendations? I have an Ergo but DD isn't v happy in it anymore. My sister sent me her didymos (sp?) wrap but it seems a bit faffy, and I always worry I won't do it properly and DD will fall out of it!

Koothrapanties Sat 07-Jun-14 21:27:42

Grum dd has awful reflux too. She's on domperidone and gaviscon. She also has cmpi, so was very poorly and in and out of hospital when she was tiny. I think this has made her a higher needs baby than she would otherwise have been.

Sorry you don't have much support. Where in the UK have you moved to? I have family, but not that many friends, so can feel a bit isolated at times too.

GrumbelinaPicklebottom Sat 07-Jun-14 21:37:56

mamawriggles - with my eldest, I actually spent about a year going to bed at 7:00 with him. He'd sometimes sleep in the cot till his first waking, then co-slept after that. Otherwise he was in the bed with me, on me.

I hardly saw my husband that year. Once, we ordered a pizza and ate it in the hallway outside our bedroom in case DS woke up. It was the first time we'd had dinner together in ages. sad

Having said that, my son is now the most loving, sweet child - he is such a blessing. It was worth every minute (though if anyone told me that at the time, I would have gladly poked their eyes out). I keep telling myself that it will be the same with my daughter, but sometimes I'm so exhausted I feel like poking my own eyes out sad

GrumbelinaPicklebottom Sat 07-Jun-14 21:54:32

koothra thanks for your reply. mine both have CMPI (and probable soy intolerance too). Thankfully, no hospitalisations required, but with really reluctant GPs, we've had to pay to have them seen by a paed privately because things were clearly not going well. My son, at almost 2, still takes omeprazole and has sleep issues - he can wake up to ten times a night (thankfully, that isn't regular). DD is on ranitidine.

I'm in uber glam Birmingham. How about you?

Totally feel you on the isolation front. I think I feel it more because my family are really close, and my 3 sisters are my best friends. Here, it's just hubby and I (and the two LOs now).

I know it's terrible, but the only thing that gets me through some days is seeing 3 or 4 years into the future, when they are both at school and I don't have to wait till my hubby is home so I can have a shower.

I'm BFing DD, so dairy free - can't even console myself with chocolate!

ReallyTired Sun 08-Jun-14 00:03:26

I feel that society has unrealistic expectations of babies. For example its not realistic to expect a ten week old baby or even a year old child to sleep through the night. The majority of babies want to be held constantly. Very few babies are happy to be left on the floor to kick under a baby gym. If you cohose to breastfeed then its unlikely that your baby will go four hours between a feed.

Perhaps the isolation is not wanting to do sleep training or bottle feed to a routine. I suggest going to La leche League meetings to meet like minded mothers.

I suspect that 90% of babies across the world are "high needs". Parents have different perceptions of what an easy baby is.

Chickz Sun 08-Jun-14 16:22:53

My baby is high needs in other ways apart from wanting to be held all the time. She is very fussy, almost angry and is constantly whining. It's so hard and relentless. Any one else out there?

mamawriggles Sun 08-Jun-14 18:33:56

Okay we are going with a later afternoon nap and later bedtime today. I guess I was trying to hang on to the earlier bedtime as I enjoyed having the evening to ourselves but there's no point if I am constantly having to go and settle her.

I feed to sleep pretty much every bedtime now and whenever she wakes at night. It is by far the quickest and least stressful way but I do get a bit fed up that I can't easily go out on an evening.

I started off seeing the other mums from our antenatal class regularly but to be honest I have distanced myself more and more. It's hard being the only one carrying a grumpy baby when the rest are happily asleep in the pram or hearing the mothers moan that they were up once in the night. Once, I should be so lucky!

buffythebarbieslayer Sun 08-Jun-14 20:30:20

I think it's western expectations. In other cultures it's the norm to carry, co sleep and feed constantly.

poocatcherchampion Sun 08-Jun-14 20:44:17

grum are you involved with the Birmingham sling meet? they meet at least once a month and are generally attachment parenty types. I haven't really gone much and we have now moved to Bromsgrove but if you are anywhere near and fancy a coffee I'm up for it. mine aren't really high needs but are 17mo apart and I have eaten supper on the landing with my dh too grin

Koothrapanties Mon 09-Jun-14 10:55:36

Grum I'm down south in Essex. I would have been up for a high needs baby meet up! We could have tried to talk to each other while our babies demanded our attention.

You lot get to eat dinner? Show offs. Dd has an internal alarm that goes off the minute I get something tasty out of the oven.

Oh and I'm now officially stuffed. Dd has stopped feeding to sleep. I was up until 9.40 with her trying to get her to sleep, then up from 3am til 5.30, then up at 6. I'm going to lose my mind.

ShineSmile Mon 09-Jun-14 16:46:15

I have a high needs baby. Was terrible until a few months ago when we cut out multiple allergies from our diet. Now she is a lot more settled thankfully.

It is very very tough and I just can't see myself doing it all over again, though I would have loved to have more.

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