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At 3.00 this morning I had a revalation: My wishy washy baby led parenting is a big bucket of poo.

(136 Posts)
BroccoliSpears Wed 29-Oct-08 09:13:37

I co-sleep.
I bf on demand.
I waited to 26 weeks to BLW.

And as a result I have not had more than 90 minutes sleep in a row for quite a while now.

I spent many hours last night feeling feverishly jealous of my friends who all weaned on to mush at 4 months and "taught the baby to go to sleep by himself" and "didn't make a rod for their own back" and put the baby in a cot on its own in its own room and potty trained their 2-year-olds with sticker charts so no longer have 2 children in nappies. It all seemed suddenly clear - I think they are right and I'm a mug. A sleep deprived, well intentioned, damp hen.

zippitippitoes Wed 29-Oct-08 09:16:22

well I can't imagine anything worse than sleeping with a child in my bed so you are probably right

never too late tho

MrsMattie Wed 29-Oct-08 09:18:05

Their lives aren't as ordered and perfect as they make out, those friends of yours.

Do you ever get a night off?

Anna8888 Wed 29-Oct-08 09:19:00

I feel very sorry for your friends' babies sad

bozza Wed 29-Oct-08 09:19:00

There is middle ground though. I breastfed both mine on demand, didn't cl-sleep very much, weaned onto rice cakes at 5 months to keep her quiet while I was having my tea, followed by mashed rather than mushed food, and potty trained at exactly 24 months with sweetie bribes.

bozza Wed 29-Oct-08 09:19:51

Oh and babies in our room until 6 months.

littleducks Wed 29-Oct-08 09:21:19

how old are you dcs? i had a 'realisation' and changed a few things and didnt let baby lead when i had ds as much as dd, but i think thats normal for a second child, as the first child is there with needs

lets work out what works for you and what you can change to get better

littleducks Wed 29-Oct-08 09:21:53

i second middle ground

witchandchips Wed 29-Oct-08 09:22:23

smile but for every clean + dry well adjusted + behaved + happy supernannied pre-schooler there is another who has issues with food or poo, still has sleep problems, or still tests boundaries.

cory Wed 29-Oct-08 09:22:57

Middle ground, like bozza says. Work out something that suits you, without worrying about your friends. Plus MrsMattie is right: you don't know how happy and successful those friends of yours really feel inside.

I actually sleep better with a child in my bed (but am not prepared to have another one just for the soporific benefits...).

MrsMattie Wed 29-Oct-08 09:24:04

Yes, there is a middle ground@bozza. I was a 'middle grounder', definitely (BF'd on demand, but eventually switched to bottle feeding; didn't co-sleep, but had DS in a cot by my bed for months; couldn't get on with controlled crying, but did try to do a bath/bed wind down thing at about 7pm once my son was a few months old...etc etc...)

You do have to go with your instincts, though, otherwise it all becomes so hard.

Broccoli - I suspect (if you're anything like me) you couldn't do what your friends have done even if you tried. It would go against your gut. But if there are elements of your lifestyle that are becoming unbearable, definitely worth considering what changes might make it a bit easier...

Anna8888 Wed 29-Oct-08 09:24:05

Agree with witchandchips. There are lots of potential dangers in your friends' approach.

Best to take things at the baby's own pace...

notyummy Wed 29-Oct-08 09:25:12

You're not a mug...you did the right thing as you saw it at the time. The weaning thing is a fact, as recommended by the WHO, and a little bit of mushed carrot/banana would be unlikly to make a kid sleep through who is not ready to.

Having said that.....i NEED my sleep. I didn't co-sleep because of that, and I did bf on demand...but that involved stuffing her full of milk all day whenever she showed the slightest interest so she slept at night, plus picking her up for a dream feed...so not really on demand I guess!I suppose what I am saying is that you did what was right for you at the time, but maybe you need to see if anything needs to change now to save your sanity...?

beansprout Wed 29-Oct-08 09:26:26

I am also following this route, but I bet I have a baby who experiences the world a a safe place, and I know this phase will pass. {smile]

BroccoliSpears Wed 29-Oct-08 09:27:29

Middle ground sounds sensible. Not sure where to make adjustments though.

Children are 2.6 and 6 months.

Ds still feeds a lot overnight so the co-sleeping means I am not up and down all night lifting him in and out of his cot. Maybe the weaning will help a bit? But he's really not particularly keen to eat much solids.

No nights off at the moment - husband is away for a few months, no family nearby and dd doesn;t ever go to nursery, so really it's just me and 2 under-3s 24/7. Am probably letting it get on top of me a bit.

RubyRioja Wed 29-Oct-08 09:30:00

I think there is a big difference between baby led and baby sympathetic. Especially the difference between a newborn and a six monther.

If (sleep deprived) memory serves, that was when I started to become a little bit mummy convenient. I don't care what anyone says, a mum who is utterly miserable with sleep deprivation, is not going to do the best job for her baby either.

I'd give some serious thought about what will actually get you some better quality sleep (I think what that thing is varies for every mum/baby combo) and give it a go.

And I did continue to bf and not use formula.

My dd3 was obliged into some kind of a routine by school/pre-school runs and was just as cheerful, well nourished (better actually) than my first two who dominated proceedings.

There is definitely some happier, middle ground.

Well done for surviving this long grin

Don't beat yourself up, you should not be making such important decisions at 3am anyway.

I did not cosleep but never did the controlled crying thing and DD slept from around 14 weeks, DS did not sleep through the night till 2.5years. So it is not about "good" and "bad" parenting (I HATE THAT) it is about the temperament of the child.

Do what feels right for your family.

compo Wed 29-Oct-08 09:31:15

how old is your lo? even if you had bottle fed, got into a routine etc you still might not have had a good sleeper

littleducks Wed 29-Oct-08 09:34:09

Am just the same atm. but ds is nearly 7 months and so has begun weaning, which was going great until they both got ill last week.

Tbh he is feeding less now he has food but i dont think that is due to the food just a concidence as i think just before we started was a grownth spurt/teething (no teeth but very swollen gums) mess.

I co slept with dd in a bedside cot, with ds i had the side up and he is now in a room with dd although i do camp iin there as dd is up a bit in the night.

When i do get into the bath bed at 7 routine it works well. But dh is hardly here at the moment so it sometime just doesnt happen.

RubyRioja Wed 29-Oct-08 09:34:15

Hmm - I remember making a plan with my bf babies who fed every 90 mins at night. I spent a few nights where I comforted them without milk for about 10 mins until they went for 1 h 40 mins. Then 1 hour 50 mins and gradually increasing the interval. I think this encouraged them to eat/feed more in the day. I did not do countrolled cryign or anything, just tried to increase the gaps - vital for me - as there was no-one else to look after them at night.

For your older child, really don't push the potty training. My dd 1 took about 3 months, dd2 about 3 weeks and dd3 about 3 hours - al at about 2y 9 m - I think it is easy when they are ready and hellish when they are not.

Ah, Broccoli, that is the most difficult time, mine are about the same age difference. I was climbing the walls.

Can you get someone to take DD out for a couple of hours in the afternoon, even if it means paying a babysitter? Maybe you could even find someone to take them both to let you have a couple of hours sleep.

Do you have much of a routine? I found that having a set bedtime routine helped to get them settled in the evening.

There is light at the end of the tunnel, my DCs play so well together (most of the time) and leave me lots of time for housework MNetting.

DippyDora Wed 29-Oct-08 09:34:25

I bf till 6 months and then swapped to the bottle.
DD slept in our room, in a moses basket till 6 months and then went into a cot in her own room.
I weaned using Annabel Karmel at 6 months, with a strong emphasis on finger food.

It worked for us. She is now a happy confident little girl.

You have to do what works best for you. A mixture of different techniques is probably what most people use rather than rigidly sticking to one set of 'rules'

littleducks Wed 29-Oct-08 09:38:21

oh and with the potty training, wait till summer. i could have done dd last jan/feb at just under two but i waited till summer as it is easier in so many respects, to clean up and dry wet clothes, play outside etc.

and when you have two in nappies a toilet trained toddler seems great but in reality it has its own issues, finding a toilet, queing for toilets at least with nappies your older child can pee while you breastfeed you dont have to take baby off take toddler to toilet while baby screams (trying at home a PITA in a cafe)

it is a tough stage

ilovemydog Wed 29-Oct-08 09:39:47

Well, I co sleep or whatever it's called because I cannot be asked to schlep DS back and forth. He is starting to snore now though...

DS has a cot that he sleeps in for at least part of the night....

I don't think there is anything wrong with purees. When I lived in France, the mother I was staying with made a family meal of steak, potatoes and salad, and put the whole thing into a liquidizer thing for the baby!!

DD and DS are happy with potatoes, lentils, pureed chicken

Are you sure that your friends aren't putting a bit of a gloss on sleep patterns? My friend assured me that her DD was sleeping through at 3 months which made me jealous. Her husband laughed when I commented that they were so lucky.

Where are you?

Broccoli - we all have those moments when we are going through a particularly bad patch and doubt ourselves.
i can't tell you the number of times i decided (usually at about 3am) that i had had enough and everything was going to change and whatever.
do you really think that if you tried to change everything right now you'd feel better?
like others have said:
a) every child in different
b) don't believe everything other mothers tell you.
you are a great mom who is doing a great job - by youreslf!

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