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3 week old baby left to cry for 45 mins. by foster carers/parents.I';m concerned.

(50 Posts)
bubble99 Tue 26-Apr-05 22:59:26

An aquaintance of ours has parents who are foster carers. They have been fostering for years and specialise in fostering very young babies. I was talking to her (the aquaintance) a couple of weeks ago and she said that the police and social services had brought a two week old baby to the house in the middle of the night. I spoke to her again a couple of days ago and asked how the baby was doing. She said that her parents had left the baby to cry for 45 minutes during the night to 'teach her to sleep'. I am very concerned about this. This, to me, seems wrong. Tiny babies cry for a reason and I'm really upset to think of this little one crying and crying and not getting any response. I know about controlled crying but that is for older babies, not tiny little scraps. I feel I should do something. Any ideas? Should I contact social services? And if so, what do I say?

soapbox Tue 26-Apr-05 23:06:24

Bubble - I agree with you - 45 minutes must seem an age to a tiny baby like this! How old are the foster parents? Could it be a generational thing???

Having said that we have had a few posters (but nevertheless a very small minority) on here over the years who have thought it appropriate to let very young babies 'learn how to sleep'

emkana Tue 26-Apr-05 23:07:21

Oh my God - a two week old baby? !!!!!!!!
That is terrible. You should definitely do something - I would phone Social Services and explain the situation to them. I think there can be no doubt that two weeks is too young to leave a baby to cry!

God, that really makes me very very ...

Frizbe Tue 26-Apr-05 23:08:14

You could contact social services, but wouldn't it be better to speak with the people involved 1st, especially as you have the information 2nd hand? if it is correct, maybe they just need a reminder not to leave newborns for that long? as they're parents of your 'aquaintance' I assume they're above 50? so may have different parenting ideals, that are a little aged and need a refresh.

hunkermunker Tue 26-Apr-05 23:08:24

Oh, poor baby Babies that young aren't meant to sleep at night, they're meant to sleep and feed at night. And I agree - no tiny baby should be left to cry for 45 mins I have no idea what you should do though - can you talk to your acquaintance again?

(Hi Bubble )

cab Tue 26-Apr-05 23:11:25

Bubble personally I wouldn't do anything as your friend could have got the wrong end of the stick. It could be that the wee soul was crying all night long despite food, cuddles, nappy changes etc and they felt that leaving her to cry herself off to sleep was a very last resort. Can well remember one night my sister's baby screaming the place down regardless of what we all did - including trips out in the pram in the middle of the night, driving around in the car with him etc etc. Leaving the wee soul to cry himself off to sleep would probably have been the more sensible option, but definitely not the easiest for whoever had to listen to it - so the chances are that these people were doing what they thought was best for the baby?

lockets Tue 26-Apr-05 23:19:27

Message withdrawn

bubble99 Tue 26-Apr-05 23:19:43

The aquaintance is 24 and, though I haven't met her parents, I imagine they're in their 50's. She's also told me that her mum 'force feeds' a bottle at midnight to get the baby/ies to sleep. It makes me feel so sad because I think of these tiny babies away from their mummies (for whatever reason) being subjected to such insensitive 'care'.

I think I'll have to bite the bullet and talk to her parents though I'm inclined to 'phone SS's and let them deal with it.

lockets Tue 26-Apr-05 23:19:43

Message withdrawn

bubble99 Tue 26-Apr-05 23:19:46

The aquaintance is 24 and, though I haven't met her parents, I imagine they're in their 50's. She's also told me that her mum 'force feeds' a bottle at midnight to get the baby/ies to sleep. It makes me feel so sad because I think of these tiny babies away from their mummies (for whatever reason) being subjected to such insensitive 'care'.

I think I'll have to bite the bullet and talk to her parents though I'm inclined to 'phone SS's and let them deal with it.

lockets Tue 26-Apr-05 23:19:53

Message withdrawn

bubble99 Tue 26-Apr-05 23:19:54

The aquaintance is 24 and, though I haven't met her parents, I imagine they're in their 50's. She's also told me that her mum 'force feeds' a bottle at midnight to get the baby/ies to sleep. It makes me feel so sad because I think of these tiny babies away from their mummies (for whatever reason) being subjected to such insensitive 'care'.

I think I'll have to bite the bullet and talk to her parents though I'm inclined to 'phone SS's and let them deal with it.

bubble99 Tue 26-Apr-05 23:19:56

The aquaintance is 24 and, though I haven't met her parents, I imagine they're in their 50's. She's also told me that her mum 'force feeds' a bottle at midnight to get the baby/ies to sleep. It makes me feel so sad because I think of these tiny babies away from their mummies (for whatever reason) being subjected to such insensitive 'care'.

I think I'll have to bite the bullet and talk to her parents though I'm inclined to 'phone SS's and let them deal with it.

lockets Tue 26-Apr-05 23:20:01

Message withdrawn

bubble99 Tue 26-Apr-05 23:23:25

The Great God Mumsnet must be updating or archiving, it's all running very slowly. Sorry for multiple posts. I'm impatient.

bubble99 Tue 26-Apr-05 23:27:41

cab, that's the thing. These people are very experienced carers and are involved in vetting/approving potential carers. Am I reading too much into this? Surely an overtired baby would drop off well before 45 minutes?

cab Tue 26-Apr-05 23:33:52

Bubble they're all so different, don't think anyone who wasn't actually there is in any place to judge. No offence intended.

bubble99 Tue 26-Apr-05 23:39:15

None taken cab. This is why mnet is so good. A different person has a different perspective. When your sister's little lad wouldn't settle would he cry for that long?

soapbox Tue 26-Apr-05 23:44:52

On the other hand Bubble you'd kick yourself if something happened and you hadn;t said anything!

Maybe double check the facts and then say something????

cab Tue 26-Apr-05 23:45:19

Jeez bubble he could cry for Britain - he was 2.5 yrs old before his parents got a decent night's sleep!
Never tried it, but I'm sure if my dd (now 4.5yrs old) had cried for that long there would have been a good reason for it, but her cousin was definitely different.

soapbox Tue 26-Apr-05 23:58:07

But Cab any reaonable person would take said baby into bed or get up and cuddle them or whatever it took! You wouldn't just leave it to bawl it out - or at least I wouldn't!

I can understand having a crying baby but I can't understand just leavng it to cry

bubble99 Wed 27-Apr-05 00:03:59

It's a tough one isn't it? I'm not remotely worried about making an arse of myself if I've got it wrong. It's difficult because the baby will be physically well, fed and watered. It's the emotional aspect I worry about. Doesn't help that the aquaintance kept referring to the baby as 'it'- but then, she grew up with babies regularly appearing overnight which probably made her a jealous little girl with a dislike of babies.

cab Wed 27-Apr-05 00:08:55

Soapbox maybe they had tried all of that already? (As foster carers I doubt they would have taken the baby into bed with them - don't think it's recommended cos of risk of cot death?) who knows.

ghosty Wed 27-Apr-05 00:29:25

My DS would cry for hours at night as a small baby ... but I never ever left him for that long. I did cuddles, rocking, feeding blah blah ...
My DS was 3 months when I first left him to cry and tried to teach him to sleep ... yes, I know he was far too young but I had bad advice ... worked for a bit but at 5 yrs he is still a crap sleeper.
I never left DD to cry for longer than a couple of minutes at all and she is a champion sleeper.
Bubble99 perhaps you should talk to the people and find out why they think they should do this? We have friends who have 2 adopted daughters (now grown up) and they say that they always slept through the night from the moment they got them (adopted as young babies ... one was 2 months old, other was 3 weeks old) ... perhaps this is part of the foster carer's 'job' - to 'teach' the baby to sleep?? I don't know, sounds far fetched and awful but maybe they think they are supposed to do this?
Poor baby, away from its mum and left all alone to cry ...

highlander Wed 27-Apr-05 04:11:24

bubble, their approach to parenting young babies is waaaaaaay out of date - but was clearly the norm when they were young parents. Feeding babies on a schedule - FFS, who does that nowadays?

It is now regarded as barbaric to "teach" babies to sleep in this manner, when their sleep cycles are vastly different from that of an adult. Babies need love and cuddles, and lots of it.

They do need reporting to SS, if only to be retrained themsleves.

This story made me cry

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