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10 month feeds to sleep or cries for ages- will she ever go to sleep on her own?

(13 Posts)
skyebluepink Sun 17-Jul-11 19:44:10

My 10 month dd always used to bf to sleep . Now it happens less and less and she starts sort of lolling around half open eyed across the bed where I feed her. So I put her in her cot and she cries and cries. How do I get her to learn how to go to sleep without the crying.

I do a sort of controlled crying in that I put her down and leave her for short periods of time till she lies down sobbing and eventually closes her eyes with me in the room with my hand on her back, or I BF her again. So that method doesn't seem to really work for us. I do it out of sheer desperation rather than thinking that there is some kind of sleep training going on.

Will she just learn on her own?

aichi Sun 17-Jul-11 21:47:03

I can relate to this and watching this thread with interest.
My dd is 8 months and she does exactly the same and I'm also desperate for advice too. We've tried controlled crying but it doesnt seen to work or I given in...She's not been well last few weeks so I'm leaving it til she's better and try again.

She's very clingy and seen to be going through separation anxiety just now...

Mondaybaby Mon 18-Jul-11 11:33:48

I also have a 10.5 month old dd who has always been bf to sleep and seems resistant to any change. I was making some small positive steps to getting her to self settle by putting her down when very drowsy but then last week she became sick and now things are worse than ever. I know consistency is the most important thing when making changes but I also give in after an hour of trying to get her to settle without feeding her. It is just too emotionally draining to see her so distressed. So, I have decided to take the path of least resistance right now and hope things get better naturally. I have come to the conclusion that you have to trust your instincts as what works well for one baby will not work for another.

JoinTheDots Mon 18-Jul-11 12:35:08

The No Cry Sleep Solution is good for this - I would recommend having a read of it. It is a slow, long term change plan which should mean you do not have to resort to the little one crying in order to get to sleep.

Alternatively, they do all grow out of it, so you can always keep going until it ends naturally (disclaimer, I can't tell you when this will happen)

SleepDeprivedGrumpyBum Mon 18-Jul-11 21:11:26

My Ds was exactly the same at nearly 9 months (god that's gone quickly) but as I'm back to work next week I decided i needed to tackle his sleep issues sooner rather than later.
The first thing i did was change his routine around a bit. From about 7 weeks he's been in a bath, feed and bed routine; more often than not going into his cot asleep rather than awake. So one night last I changed it and fed him before his bath to try and break to feed/sleep association that I think he had developed.

So after his bath i read DS "each peach pear plum" (which I have used as a bedtime cue before) in his room, followed by a couple of lullabies ending with twinkle twinkle little star (again because we've used this to soothe him at other points in his bedtime routine, it's just what works for him) I then put him in his cot awake and then basically got strict. I didn't leave him on his own to cry at all, but every time he sat up i just gently laid him back down, no interaction, no eye contact; and eventually he just rolled on his side and went to sleep. He did cry quite a bit for the first night, it took about 40 minutes and numerous time of laying him back down. But the next night it took no where near as long, the night after that I only had to lay him back down 3 times, and for the past 4 nights he's fallen asleep on his own in his cot after about 5 minutes. I'm now working on moving further and further away from the cot until I don't have to be in the room for him to fall asleep.

I think one bit of advice i would give would be on his original bedtime routine DS was going to bed by 7pm without fail. When i started making changes I waited until i knew he was sleepy, rather than sticking to a rigid timetable as i felt i had more chance of success with anything new if i knew he was tired IYKWIM.

Sorry for the long post!

skyebluepink Mon 18-Jul-11 22:05:12

Hi everyone thank you for your posts

Monday - I get quite stressed about consistency, precisely because I am so inconsistent. Sometimes I pick her up, sometimes I leave her, sometimes I sit in the room and so on. Useless! I think I get so stressed in the moment that I forget about the bigger picture.

GrumpyBUm, your post may be long but it was very useful and has given me some really good ideas about how I can go about implementing change, gently. Interesting also that you don't think you need to be rigid about times.

Jointhedots, thanks for that - is that something that you have experience of? I know it sounds lame given that I am posting about this topic and asking for help, but I have a slight aversion to any kind of 'manual' as I feel like it might interfere with my instinct, as Monday mentions.

Aitchi, I hope your baby gets better soon and i hope this won't sound patronising and what the hell do I know but I think you are right to wait a bit. I wonder if for me 10 months was too early to start really, though my DD is very advanced grin

Newbabynewmum Mon 18-Jul-11 22:21:35

This sort of thing happened to me. My 9mo stopped having bottles - she just decided she didn't want them anymore - she used to feed to sleep so I was a bit stuck in that area!

I basically sat with her and "shhh patted" her to sleep for a few weeks. Continual "shh" noises and patting her back. She got a bit upset sometimes but I felt like I was helping her.

Now (a few weeks later) I put her in her cot - she has a couple of minutes wander about - an intermittent cry or two then lies down and goes to sleep!

She learnt herself basically! She was a very clingy baby and always fed to sleep so I'm amazed she's doing so well smile

Hope that helps a bit. Do what you think is best.

KD0706 Mon 18-Jul-11 23:49:32

At 10 months old my DD needed fed or rocked to sleep and usually woke twice in the night for another feed. Now she's 14 months and for the past month or so has been sleeping through the night (with just a couple of blips) and much better at self soothing.

I've never really left her to cry. The odd time I leave her for a minute or so if I need to nip to the loo or something. But other than that I've just not wanted to do any sleep training. Just my personal choice. And in in the lucky position to be a SAHM so when she was sleeping badly I could nap with her in the days.

But she does seem to have grown out of needing soothed to sleep (for now!)

Dr Sears calls it children needing patented to sleep. It's not for everyone , but for us it just felt right to give her what reassurance we felt she needed, and let her do things at her own pace. Any of the dr Sears books would be a good read if you think this approach might be for you.

KD0706 Mon 18-Jul-11 23:50:41

That should read parented to sleep...

JarethTheGoblinKing Mon 18-Jul-11 23:51:29

Is she too old for a Dummy?

JoinTheDots Tue 19-Jul-11 10:02:38

Hi there

yes, I have used the No Cry Sleep Solution, and I agree on the manual front! Not really keen.

For me though, the methods used (things like introducing cues, and looking at routine, as well as breaking habits you do not want your little one to have - falling asleep on the boob for example) were very instinctive, but when written down and put into a kind of "you can do this" plan made them seem more possible. It was more an aid to get me to decide what I wanted to change and then choose the ways I was going to do it and stick to them.

If you don't want to buy a copy of the book, get it out of the library. The author is/was a co-sleeping, breast feeding mother who was not keen letting her little ones associate crying with bedtime. She also has case studies and comments from other parents in there on what they have done and what has worked for them. None of the methods she employs let the baby cry though (even if you are there with them) which I liked, as I am weak!

SleepDeprivedGrumpyBum Tue 19-Jul-11 17:48:58

Skyebluepink I'm glad my post gave you some ideas. The thing about not being rigid with times was because my DS doesn't really have a nap schedule as such; and if we've been out in the afternoon and he's had a later nap I know he might not be as tired at bedtime. For example this afternoon he fell asleep on the way home from my friends and slept until 5pm, so tonight i probably wont start bedtime until 7ish so he's in his cot about half past. I try to get the balance somewhere between tired but not overtired as otherwise i know it will be so much harder to settle Ds.

My Dp is away for the next couple of nights so I'm now aiming to do the gentle laying back down during the night as well ( i usually give up by about 1am and co-sleep and feed Ds back to sleep) as co-sleeping isn't really working anymore as Ds is so fidgety.

Has there been any improvements in your DD? or have you had anymore thoughts about how you might tackle her not settling?

skyebluepink Wed 20-Jul-11 09:30:22

Grumpy Bum I am definitely going to look at the recommendations given to me - the Sears book and No Cry sleep. I have thought about changing the routine around but whatever I do I still end up with a baby that won't sleep for an hour or so - she either cries or plays and so I either comfort her or leave her. last night I thought she seemed exceptionally tired so she was ready for bed 5,45 all ready to go but there was no chance and as ever she went to sleep at 8pm.

Generally I do dinner at 5.30. bath and story for 6.30 and feeding for 6.45/7 ( more or less) but for about a month she hasn't gone down before 8pm.
My DP reckons she just wants to go to bed at 8! Whereas I think that is a co-incidence and that generally after and hour and a half of fannying around she is too tired to fight it anymore. I think 8 is far too late as she has 2 short naps in the day and generally doesnt wake later than 7am.

We do co-sleep anyway and so she comes in with us from anywhere between 10-12 and stays there!

It is amazing how different babies are. Newmum, my DD isn't at all clingy- barely notices my existence! yet at bedtime she is inconsolable. Well done your DD for getting to sleep on her own.

KD thanks for your advice - I do leave her to cry when I need to do stuff too but I hate doing it so I'll have a look at the Sears books.

Dots, it's not about being weak! I do think I need to have a rethink about cues and routine perhaps.

jareth, yes dummies were never really an option for my DD.

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