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Help me. 7mo DS won't sleep alone, I'm exhausted and going back to work in 2 weeks

(4 Posts)
RayeB Wed 12-Oct-11 10:12:41

Hi

I really need some advice. My second child (DS) is 7 months old. We had a rocky start in that he was unwell and we had a week long hospital stay at 4 weeks old, then numerous scary tests which really unsettled him. So I have had him sleeping in his cot at the bottom of our bed rather than move his cot into his own room at 6 months. Well to be honest, he was in there from 6.30pm bedtime until I came up to bed 10pm ish, disturbed him and he cried so I put him in middle of me and husband. Then he wouldn't go back into cot unless completely asleep as he won't fall asleep unless holding my hand... Not great. Husband moved into guest bedroom to give me and DS more space but I think at 7 months now is the time to get him settled in his own room. I would like my husband back! And more importantly I start work in 2 weeks and I would disturb him getting up early to get ready, which is not ideal.

We moved his cot in his bedroom 4 nights ago and it's been hell. It's not a room he is not used to as it's next door to his 3 yr old sister so every night we go in there and play while we get ready for bed etc, so he's been in there on and off since newborn. He just won't sleep alone. He falls asleep after bottle at bedtime at 6.30pm but by 10.15pm on the dot, he wakes and cries and cries until I eventually have to bring him into our bed from sheer exhaustion. Once he's in there, he sleeps. My husband can go up to him and he will hold his hand and fall asleep, he has been camping on floor with his hand through railings. Not great as he's up early for work but if I go up, it's game over, he cries until he's sleeping next to me.

Sorry for the long post but i am stuck. I don't want to try controlled crying as it would wake his sister and at 3 yrs old she needs her sleep. How do I get my baby to sleep alone without me and also to sleep in his own room? By the way, he is completely 100% healthy now and no scary or unsettling tests have been done for a while now so I don't feel I need to cuddle him as he's unsettled from that.

Thanks in advance.

Raye

nearlytherenow Wed 12-Oct-11 10:21:10

We used a sleep clinic (Millpond, but there are others) with our similar aged son. Worked wonders. We did a gradual retreat programme - slowly moving from feeding / rocking to sleep to him going to sleep on his own. It took about 3 weeks, but there was a big improvement after a few days (he started going to sleep on his own with me just sitting by the cot). If you really need it sorted quickly I'd definitely recommend using a clinic / consultant - think we paid about £250 a couple of years ago, and I still see it as pretty much the best money we have ever spent.

addictedtofrazzles Wed 12-Oct-11 11:41:13

Sorry but if you really want to sort then you are going to have to do a CC of some sort. It will only take a couple of nights - can you move your dd into a travel cot in your room? Can she stay with a relative? Worst case if she wakes (I have always been surprised how little they wake with the loudest noises!!) perhaps she will resettle quickly?

You know your son is not unwell - he has sleep associations and needs to unlearn them. He is not going to unlearn them if you cave and go and hold his hand in the cot. For me, I have let them cry at 5 minute intervals, gone in and shh'd and patted etc. The first night can take hours but they soon learn how to sleep without the props. It is doable but you have to be strong!!!

It is not easy but you may well surprise yourself and him. And just think, you can all function on a decent nights sleep with your husband in your bed. There are no magic solutions - it takes a bit of hard work but is really possible.

Good luck.

RayeB Wed 12-Oct-11 20:19:37

Hi, thanks. I can't afford a sleep clinic at the moment, 9 months of mat leave has depleted all savings.

Dear Addictedtofrazzles - I think you are right, going to have to try doing it. I've arranged for mum to have my daughter on Friday night and will do it then. I know it will take longer than one night so I guess she can sleep in our room or in the guest room until it's done. Thank you.

Just need the confidence to try it now and I've no idea how to do it.
Will do some reading unless anyone can give me a quick precis?

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