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1 week old will not sleep. Starting to struggle to cope :-(

(38 Posts)
Ellen996 Wed 29-Jan-14 06:21:28

I am new to both mums net and forums but have been prompted to post as I am reaching a point where I am struggling to cope with my 1 week old.

She sleeps fine during the day but at night will not settle. She repeatedly ask for food so I breast feed constantly swapping from one side to the other and nothing else will comfort her. She falls asleep on my breast but the second I try to put her down in the Moses basket she wakes and starts screaming again. She has only slept for two hours last night and I don't see how this's can be normal as I thought newborns were supposed to spend most of their time asleep!

My husband and I are both so stressed and I'm do tired I'm worried I'll fall asleep with her when in the chair or bed and will end up dropping her.

Please help if anyone had any advice

Pidgy Wed 29-Jan-14 06:30:29

Congratulations on your new arrival!
I have a 2 week old and have to say that she is often the same. I'm led to believe this is pretty normal!
This is my second child and my son wasn't so bad but was still quite nocturnal I'm those early days.

Ways I'm coping:
Sleep in the day if you can.
Doing a shift - DH has her from 8-11pm so I can get at least some sleep.
I find she sometimes sucks for comfort so I use my little finger on the room of her mouth to settle her and she falls asleep.
Once asleep I wait for her to fall into a deep sleep (20 mins) before trying to put her down. Sometimes works, often doesn't!
Probably not advised, but we've both had to let her sleep on out chests (and I have also fallen asleep like this) - I've used a blanket to 'tie' her to me and have been in the middle of the bed with my covers only over my legs.

She will get better and you will get through this!!

Gottalottaquestions Wed 29-Jan-14 06:31:18

Unfortunately this is perfectly normal. My DD slept wonderfully during the day but cried most of the night for the first 7 weeks. Everything is so new and they get so hungry as their tummies are tiny.

The first two weeks you should have no more of an expectation than to survive. The first 6 weeks can be very hard. Try to come up with a strategy to get some sleep - any sleep when you can. DH and I took turns letting DD sleep on us as that was the only thing she wanted. We took turns comforting her. We watched a lot of tv during the night.

You could try co sleeping.

You could make sure she's feeding regularly during the day, rousing her if necessary to get her to latch on if bf.

Mainly though it will just take time but it will get better. Honestly. Be kind to yourself. Lower your sleep expectations and try and work out a way to work as a team so both of you get some sleep. Even if not at the same time.

It will get better.

Pidgy Wed 29-Jan-14 06:33:58

Sorry for the typos!! I'm pretty tired!



KristinaM Wed 29-Jan-14 06:34:14

I'm sorry to hear this, I know it's very hard.

You mentioned that you are constantly swapping her side to side while you are bf. How often you do mean?

Claryrocks Wed 29-Jan-14 06:35:16

Congratulations on your baby but sorry to hear you are struggling. Most mums will completely feel your pain. It's the bit they don't tell you at ante-natal classes. Newborns do sleep a lot but unfortunately for many it's during the day. Both mine were the same and hated the Moses basket.

It does get easier I promise. As they get older they are better at sleeping. My first advice would be sleep as much as you can when they do. I didn't as I wanted to enjoy the day but you need to. Make sure you are feeding regularly through the day. Many babies are nocturnal and don't feed much in the day then come alive at night and play catch up.

Whilst you should feed your baby as often as they want it, it shouldn't be on the breast constantly.

With my first we muddled through and I was exhausted and emotional. By 6 weeks things had got better but 5 more weeks of what you're going through will I know seem unbearable.

With my second I ended up sleeping with him in a double bed in the spare room (my husband didn't want to squash him) and I felt much better but not everyone happy to co-sleep.

Have you got family who could help for one night or day and hold your baby so you can get some sleep?

I promise it gets easier but having my first baby was the hardest thing I did and you're not alone.

Apparentlychilled Wed 29-Jan-14 06:36:29

Same here. Dd is 6 days old. Last night Dh took her till 12.39 so u got a couple of hours uninterrupted sleep. I second comments re 1st few weeks being super tough. Nap when yiy can, take tyrns w DH. Hang in there. It will get better.

SweetPeaPods Wed 29-Jan-14 06:44:49

Congratulations. Ds slept on me or DH for first 4 weeks. They are so tiny and like reassurance that you are there. It won't last promise

woodlandwanderwoman Wed 29-Jan-14 06:55:07

You're doing brilliantly, it DOES get easier. The first few weeks are all about comfort and feeding, as long as baby is getting these there are no rights or wrongs other than to also do what you can to look after yourself.

Swaddling worked brilliantly for us, also a finger for baby to suck on works wonders. Good luck xxx

HalleLouja Wed 29-Jan-14 06:58:00

Sounds normal. With Dc2 I bought a cosleeping crib which meant it was essier to put her down. But I think she slept on or next to me a few times or so. They don't learn the difference between night and day until about 6 weeks iirc.

Hang on in there. It does get better. Also the people who tell you to sleep when they fo are talking sense. It took me a while to get that....

ATruthUniversallyAcknowledged Wed 29-Jan-14 07:03:00

Congratulations thanks

What you're describing is normal, but it will get better.

Some suggestions if you want to keep using the basket:
Line the moses basket with a t shirt you've worn so it smells of you
Put a hot water bottle in the bssket to warm it up before you transfer her to it (take it out uust before you put her in)
Have the basket right next to your bed so you can keep your hand near her

Or, what I did, learn to feed lying down. Co sleep. Snooze while she's feeding (Google safe Co sleeping and you'll find loads of info)

This too will pass.

nervy555 Wed 29-Jan-14 07:45:23

Loads of good advice already! Hope you're feeling moreppositive op. It is so hard but the best thing i did was come on here to hear honest stories of newborn horror (in rl people seem afraid to admit how difficult it is!) I also went to great lengths to make daytime noisy and bright and the night quiet and dark (as much as possible!)


CityDweller Wed 29-Jan-14 20:07:07

Totally normal, disheartening though that may be to hear! I think there's also a growth spurt around this age, which'll make them want to feed constantly.

DD slept on us at night at this age a lot. DH and I took turns to sleep in 2hr shifts while the other one held her. It was knackering, and I remember waiting for the chink of light through the blind when I was doing the 3-5am shift cos that would mean we'd survived another night!

tanimbar Thu 30-Jan-14 20:44:26

Definitely learn to feed lying down - no danger of dropping then. Sleep with the baby, either with her on you, in shifts, or lying in the crook of your arm. It's what new babies do, in real life. Accept it, enjoy her, and don't wish the time away. Don't listen to people who tell you it will all get better at x weeks. It might, it might not. But you will, at some point, miss having a newborn snuggled on your chest.

lilyaldrin Thu 30-Jan-14 20:48:52

Many (most?) babies won't sleep alone at night at first - it's a survival instinct to want to be near you and at the breast.

Agree with others that if you are at risk of falling asleep in a chair, lie down with your baby in a safe bed. This leaflet has some info about safe bedsharing

NickyEds Thu 30-Jan-14 21:41:33

It's normal-my DS wouldn't be put down for the first couple of weeks. It's really really hard- me and OH just did shifts holding him and imagined we were the only ones doing it, thought we were doing it all wrong. This too shall pass! I hated people saying that it would get easier eventually- it's just so difficult to hear when you're in the middle of it but it sounds like you're doing great. I watched DVD,wrote stories about my pregnancy for DS, drank loads of diet coke and generally did everything I could to avoid falling asleep with DS on the sofa, then OH would take over and do the same.
Try to get at least some time together.My sister came over and we went out for a 10 minute walk together before a short nap and it really helped. If someone offers help -take it.

NickyEds Thu 30-Jan-14 21:45:06

Oh meant to say DS is 5 weeks now and it's already much better- but still fresh enough in my memory to feel your pain! Good luck

TimeToPassGo Thu 30-Jan-14 21:50:18

Swaddling was brilliant for us. Also (and sorry if this sounds obvious but it wasn't for me) try and start teaching the difference between day and night asap. So daytime feeds are noisy and chatty, interacting with baby. Night time keep lights off if possible, feed, swaddle and shush. White noise is helpful too, it's meant to replicate the sounds in the womb. It can just be static on a radio or there are free white noise apps.

Get yourself the Harvey Karp book 'Baby Bliss' - I read about it on here and it was the best thing I ever heard of!

Krustyandthekids Thu 30-Jan-14 21:55:18

Congratulations!! I remember so well feeling like this! It WILL get better. As others have said, sleep in the day when you can. It won't be long until she changes her days and nights round.

I resorted to a dummy for about 2 months just so I was sure my DS was feeding properly and found that he did want to suckle. It also meant I didn't get sore nipples and he took better feeds.

Hope you manage to rest and take care of yourself x

Ellen996 Fri 31-Jan-14 04:25:07

Thanks everyone for your comments.

I know really that I'm not alone with these problems but it's difficult none the less.

Night before this one was a little better with 2 2 hour spells of sleep but tonight( hence time of post) we have yet to go to sleep! Currently Bf again. :-(

Sleepless nights with what midwives now suspect is PND following traumatic birth just feel like there's no end in sight.

Will have a look at how you swaddle and give this s go and Dd now taking infacol for terrible wind too. Maybe BF just will have to be another thing to give up on and resort to bottles to see if it helps.

Ellen996 Fri 31-Jan-14 04:29:20

Also meant to add DD now not sleeping during day either , particularly bad in evenings so sleeping during day almost impossible.

My DH also not feeling at all well so trying to leave him to sleep.

Ellen996 Fri 31-Jan-14 04:42:25

Just reading through your comments also want to say have tried my top in crib and hot water bottle. Still terrified of co sleeping after all bad comments you hear about how dangerous it is but think tonight I have fallen asleep with her on me twice already, so not sure what to do about that. either.

Mogz Fri 31-Jan-14 04:50:44

Sorry you're having a hard time, my dd is just over 7 weeks now and we are just about getting out of those foggy sleepless days and nights.
Have you thought about expressing some breast milk whilst your DH has the baby so that he can do one or two of the feeds whilst you have a nap? It really is a godsend if you can make it work for you, but obviously don't put too much pressure on yourself, it's all about finding what works best for you all as a new little unit and keeps you all happy and fed.
Have you joined in with the January antenatal thread on here? You'll find it full of great advice from mums going through the same stages as you.

Ellen996 Fri 31-Jan-14 04:51:24

Just reading through your comments also want to say have tried my top in crib and hot water bottle. Still terrified of co sleeping after all bad comments you hear about how dangerous it is but think tonight I have fallen asleep with her on me twice already, so not sure what to do about that. either.

Ellen996 Fri 31-Jan-14 04:54:30

I haven't joined in that thread yet but will try and find it I think, never used a forum before so just finding my feet. Have to say the support already makes a difference during these sleepless nights.

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