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Does anybody else feel like they're getting it all wrong?

(17 Posts)
HubbaDubbaDub Wed 09-Jul-08 12:17:49

Do other people feel like this? My DD is four months old and we're going through a bit of a rough patch. She just never seems quite happy - I think this is mainly a sleep issue, as she fights daytime naps and so is always a bit tired. I've tried so many things to get her to sleep but essentially everything seems to involve a fair bit of crying at the moment. Right now, she's upstairs in her cot screaming because she's SO tired but I just can't get her to sleep! I just feel like a rubbish mummy who's getting it all wrong, because I can't make her happy, and I've got this vision of other Mummies putting their baby to sleep and it's all calm and lovely! It's not like that in this household! Is it always like this?

Othersideofthechannel Wed 09-Jul-08 12:27:44

I think everyone feels like they are getting it all wrong at least once if it is any comfort.
I went through the same as you when DS was 12 weeks.

I read somewhere that with babies this age you have to watch like a hawk for first signs of tiredness (eyerubbing for example) and straight away go into calming down and sleep routine. If you wait five minutes the opportunity can be lost. It certainly worked for DS. It was amazing how much he slept once he figured out how to go to sleep. Also I started putting him down on a lambskin which seemed to help him relax.

Good luck.

HubbaDubbaDub Wed 09-Jul-08 12:34:53

Thanks otherside. Yes, I read that too but that seems to make me feel even worse, that I can't catch those signals ... or if I do it doesn't help that much, as she wakes up 20 minutes later still tired and more hysterical! Thanks for the good luck though!

Othersideofthechannel Wed 09-Jul-08 12:42:22

Yes, DS did the waking up thing too. They get so tired that they can't sleep properly. A sleep cycle is 45 mins so they should be sleeping that long or twice as much if they go into a new cycle.

If she doesn't have excema, you could try bathing her when she has been awake for an hour to relax her. Hopefully she will nap better after that.

Also does she sleep ok in pushchair/car/on you? For a few weeks I used to cheat by getting DS to nap in this way just to get over the overwrought stage. Then went back to putting him down in his cot.

OlderNotWiser Wed 09-Jul-08 12:43:28

Oh yes, me too, most days!But I seem to remember that my DS2 went through this at a similar age. I wonder if its the transition from sleeping all the time, like newborns do, to taking proper naps? I think my DS took a while to get the hang of being awake more but certainly got there in time. Initially I did wahtever worked to be honest, mostly sleep in pram at that point (in the garden worked a treat, as it happens! I could see him, and its enclosed etc)I then gradually started to put him into his cot for sleeps so now he'll do either which is handy. Persevere. Its not you at all, its one of those difficult stages they go through.

Othersideofthechannel Wed 09-Jul-08 12:44:58

"its the transition from sleeping all the time, like newborns do, to taking proper naps"

Yes, it is that. They suddenly get alert to what is going on around them and can't switch off. Fresh air is good for getting them to go off as well.

HubbaDubbaDub Wed 09-Jul-08 13:02:15

That does seem to be the problem - she is far more interested in her surroundings now. I've just resorted to lying down with her on the bed and she's gone to sleep. Hooray! But I don't think that's great with regard to helping her self settle?! Oh well, head down and get through this stage I think, as you say.

sundew Wed 09-Jul-08 13:12:02

Hubba I have 2 dds (now 7 and 4 yrs old) I could NEVER get either of them to sleep in the cot during the day. I used to go for a walk in the pram or in the sling to get them to go to sleep.

Some parents are very lucky and their dcs sleep in the cot at the drop of a hat - but a lot aren't.

I found that taking the dds for a walk cleared my head as well and got me out of the house which made me feel a bit more sane grin

Good luck and you are doing a fab job

HubbaDubbaDub Wed 09-Jul-08 13:19:30

Thanks Sundew! I think I've read too many books etc going on about the importance of self settling which make me feel anxious about doing the wrong thing (ie helping her get to sleep through whatever means)! She likes to sleep on me at night, a habit I'm really trying to break, but no wonder she doesn't like her cot much during the day I guess. It's comforting to know that I'm not the only one, the other Mums I meet in RL just seem to have this cracked!

Morloth Wed 09-Jul-08 14:19:59

Hubba, I wouldn't worry about self settling at this stage, just accept any sort of settling you can get really!

DS used to sleep in the sling for daytime sleeps and often breastfed to sleep at night. Also if you are happy for her to sleep on you at night then do that for as long as you both enjoy it. Just do whatever works, when it stops working try something else. Its a great big load of crap that you get "stuck" doing something, they change so much that it really is best to just go with the moment, IYSWIM?

You can't really do the wrong thing if you are trying your hardest, this really hard stuff me.

lizinthesticks Wed 09-Jul-08 15:21:30

It sometimes seems to me that crying occurs for more than one reason. E.g. in this situation I would try a bottle - usually they fall asleep during feeding.

As to whether I feel like I'm getting it all wrong - no, I don't. But then, as me and DP are often around the house for one reason or another, I think that helps loads. If it was me on my own things would probably feel quite different.

zuzkah Wed 09-Jul-08 16:30:08

Hi, you are not alone. I have a 7months old and for the last few days when he goes for his morning nap we do this calming routine. Then I put him in his cot and he starts screaming bloody murder. I found out that it's the same if Im there sitting and trying to settle him....feeling worse than ever cos I cannot. So Im leaving him coming in every 3-5min. What is worse, he has learnt how to pull himself to standing so he does that obsessively. It took us about an hour for him to cry himself to sleep and I HATE IT I HATE IT I HATE IT! But what do you do? I guess it is his self-settling which is not great or just one of these phases...
Good luck to us all and chin up, we are doing a great job!

lizinthesticks Wed 09-Jul-08 18:11:37

Have you tried a bottle? Sometimes they seem to think it's a great idea after crying for 15 mins in their cot - even if before they looked at you like you were out of your mind when you offered it to them. Sometimes a comfort suck is all they need. Not so much a feed as a sort of nibble type thing. * shrugs *

zuzkah Wed 09-Jul-08 20:19:56

lizinthestick - Im still breasfeeding which I do before putting him in his cot. He used to fall asleep sometimes but nowadays he has learnt to fight it. I also have a bottle of water by the bedside which he gladly takes for a bit of a suck for his screaming throat but as soon as he had a few mothfuls he starts again. He even refuses a dummy. Well I think I ll stick with him crying for a few days and will see how that goes. Hopefully he stops and realises he could just peacefully fall asleep. I wish...

gingerninja Wed 09-Jul-08 20:28:18

hell yes, I do almost daily. I do remember the four month mark the hardest though. Classic growth spurt time and seems that sleep because very unsettled. My DD was very very hard work at that age and I really didn't enjoy it or her. It does get better and with each passing month it's got a little easier.

My DH is still trying to settle my DD after taking her to bed at 7 and she's almost 2. She is a blinking PITA at the moment yet a couple of months ago was going to sleep on her own and sleeping all night. It really is swings and roundabouts with children.

Have you got any friends/ family that can offer you any support?

threestars Wed 09-Jul-08 23:44:51

DS was impossible for ages and only his pushchair would work.

We saw he'd push his face into the side padding as he settled, and I guess it felt like being snuggled up to me (he'd been used to falling asleep at the breast in my bed). So we wrapped a teddy bear up in a blanket and put that in his cot very close to him and it did help.

DD is almost 4 months now and becoming more difficult to settle for naps. She won't be cradled in my arms any more. BUT she likes 'snug' too and pushes her face into a small cuddly seal to settle herself and likes a blanket held closely over her shoulders.

I read too many books with DS too and was always thinking I was rubbish. I've adamantly refused them this time, and feel much more relaxed about parenting. Good luck. smile

cupcake78 Thu 10-Jul-08 07:21:03

Your not alone!

I found this stage really difficult. Looking back it was simply ds wanting to be more independant. The cuddles went and he fought sleep at every opportunity. He cried EVERY time he was put in his cot for about 2 months.

Sleep times in my house are now calmer although there is always abit of crying. I have found it gets easier but can totally understand how frustrating and hard it is. Your doing the right thing by putting her in her cot and leaving her to cry for abit. Good luck and I hope it gets better shortly smile

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