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Where to go now - 9 week old and sleeping on his own

(15 Posts)
Pinkzebra21 Wed 05-Aug-15 23:04:44

I'm at my wits end with DS. He's 9 weeks and has not slept for more than 30 minutes in his crib - day or night. At first I didn't mind so much and I was ebf, but after 9 weeks I can't take much more and he is ff now. I need to hold him to get him to sleep & if I put him down he starts to cough, splutter and eventually scream and choke, which is very distressing. It takes about an hour to calm him down after each attempt to leave him in his crib. So I sit up all night with him, pacing the floor, in between 3 hourly feeds and many attempts at putting him down. If I didn't try to put him down, he would sleep soundly on me from around 8pm until 7am, waking only for feeds for 15 minutes or so. I am terrified of nodding off with him sleeping on me, so I just don't sleep.

I've raised one end of the crib, as he has reflux, made no difference. He's on ranitidine and reflux formula and apart from choking and coughing when I put him down, is more or less symptom free now. I also put him down with something I've worn so it's familiar to him. I've tried white noise and lullabies.

Spoke to HV about it a couple of weeks ago and she was no help, said it was fairly common and he would go down eventually. During the day he is mostly awake and is content to lie on his play mat or sit in his rocker and is a happy baby.

I read on here that LOs sleep in their cots/cribs/Moses baskets from the first few weeks, although it is interrupted for feeds. I am so envious of folk that get 2-3 hours of sleep at a time with their babies. Am I asking too much at 9 weeks? I am on my own with DS.
Thanks for reading, having a pity party and feel like the crapest mum ever.

Pinkzebra21 Wed 05-Aug-15 23:14:51

Should also have mentioned - been putting him down while he's sleeping, not self settling.

MrsO501 Thu 06-Aug-15 12:38:57

I don't really have any advice but I wanted to send you support. This sounds so hard and I think you are superwoman. Can you may be try putting him in a sling which would be hands free or can you try to get a baby sitter to slow you some rest. Maybe you could speak to your doctor for some help.

Didiusfalco Thu 06-Aug-15 12:54:47

You're not a crap mum. My DS was a terrible sleeper, didnt sleep through the night until he was two. I also have a 9 week old, and not to make you feel awful, but she will do streches of 6 hours at a time at night. The point I am trying to make is that i have done very little different between the two and whether they sleep or not is mostly down to luck. I remember feeling much the same as you and asked for advice on here. Would you consider a co-sleeping crib? Have you tried swaddling? I think my Ds needed a lot of physical contact to feel secure. I read quite a lot at the time, and i think in terms of risks, falling asleep sat up with your baby on the sofa is riskier than making a conscious decision to co-sleep and removing all quilts, pillows and other potential dangers. You must be on your knees with exhaustion, so it may be worth considering co-sleeping rather than getting to thepoint where you fall asleep accidentally.

TheOddity Thu 06-Aug-15 13:06:03

I think you need to read up on safe cosleeping so you can get some rest. I know it's not for everyone but it saved us at that time. Might not be what you planned and doesn't need to be forever, even just 6 months until the reflux improves for instance. I really feel sorry for you, 9 weeks is a long time without proper sleep. :-(

Pinkzebra21 Thu 06-Aug-15 15:48:37

Thanks for your replies.
MrsO501 Yes, I use a sling during the day, he's quite happy to sleep in it.
Didiusfalco, The Oddity will look into co-sleeping. Does it really settle a baby that won't go down?
Tried swaddling in the first few weeks, but have let it go recently.
Thanks again smile

Cake0rdeath Fri 07-Aug-15 00:01:11

DS has always been a shit sleeper (only just started sleeping through at 18 months-been a loooooong slog). Very similar to you: would sleep for 45m absolute maximum during night and dAy. He had horrific reflux and was just so uncomfortable that he couldn't settle.
We tried EVERYTHING, but the only thing that made a difference was omeprazole from the consultant paediatrician (reflux meant he also refused milk). Ranitidine worked really well to begin with but does stop working so it was the logical next step. It may be worthwhile speaking to your GP and asking for a referral. I know it's not ideal but we had a different baby within a week of starting the meds. Sleep was markedly better (2-3 hours) and it saved my sanity.
on the advice of everyone I never co-slept. I really really wish I'd ignored everyone and just booted DH to the spare room so me and DS could have settled. Yes, it's probably encouraging bad habits but, with hindsight, I would have lived with that for a few hours of interrupted sleep.
Unfortunately, with reflux babies, it's a waiting game. As soon as they're a bit more mobile, the symptoms aren't as severe. I know that's not helpful now BUT the silver lining is that they tend to be mobile much quicker. DS was sitting unsupported at 4 months, standing unsupported at 6 months and walking by 10 months. It seems like an eternity away, I know, but it will come.
Survival is the name of the game right now. If you can afford it, put your DC into nursery one day a week to let you recoup. Drop him first thing, go home and sleep. They will be fine and you can become human again.
If that isn't an option, it's time to call in favours. Ask a friend to watch DC for a few hours in your house while you nap. If you feel you wouldn't be able to switch off while they are there, ask them to go out. One thing I've learned from this baby malarkey is that friends and family WANT to help. You may worry but what's the worst that can happen in a few hours, especially if they're just walking about?
You must look after yourself. The exhaustion is debilitating

Pinkzebra21 Tue 11-Aug-15 07:07:19

Thank you Cake - that all sounds so familiar.
We now have a referral to paediatric consultant. He has started refusing feeds or if he takes them screaming like a banshee when he finishes!
The co-sleeping hasn't worked for us so far, he struggles, cries then screams and wants to be upright.
I think he is going to be mobile soon, he stands up already on me with a bit of support.
It is hard going - a friend is coming over this morning to let me have a few hours sleep. I am the waking dead at the moment!

LittleMissLady Tue 11-Aug-15 07:12:27

I haven't read all the responses but just wanted to say that my 2 were both crappy sleepers.

DS in particular as he had reflux and this suffocating separation anxiety still does at 11months

I did the controversial thing - I put him on his front. I put him down to sleep on his belly and he slept for 4 hours. FOUR HOURS! It was incredible and glorious. Over a series of months he started sleeping longer and longer. 10 hours.
Some nights I would put him on his side instead, and roll a blanket up and put it behind him so he didn't roll onto his back.

I had a sensor mat so I wasn't worried about him stopping berating. Also he started lifting his head very early so I felt comfortable.
Actually both my kids slept on their bellies...

LittleMissLady Tue 11-Aug-15 07:16:07

Just to add though, things went wrong when DS was 6 months old as he had an operation and it messed up his sleeping. Ever since then we have mostly co slept. And that has meant we get hours and hours more sleep.
Plus I get amazing super lovely cuddles most of the night smile

Purpleboa Tue 11-Aug-15 07:16:52

I'm so sorry to read this Pink zebra. flowers for you. I was feeling sorry for myself that my 7 week year old keeps waking hourly from 4am but she is giving me some hours of sleep. Your HV is wrong - this is not normal! Yes we all need to accept that sleep deprivation is part of the deal but it shouldn't be this bad. Agree that you sound like superwoman and a wonderful mum. I'm in awe of you.

Not much more to add on what others have advised. Just take it day to day and do what you can to get sleep in the day. That's good you have the support of your friend.

blueistheonlycolourwefeel Tue 11-Aug-15 07:32:29

My LO was like this - we resorted to him sleeping in a rocking baby chair. Not ideal, but he slept and I knew he was safe! We also co-slept too.
Just to give you hope - he's 4 now, and for the last 2 years, he goes down at 8 and sleeps until 6.30-7. It does get better!

blueistheonlycolourwefeel Tue 11-Aug-15 07:37:14

like this
the chair we used was an adjustable one like this.

Seasidedolly Wed 12-Aug-15 19:24:58

Have you tried seeing a cranial oestopath? Try a quick search on MN, lots of people have had success for a whole range of things including sleep and babies not liking bring put on their backs.

My 18wo son has 2nd app tomorrow for what I thought was reflux but turns out it's just a tight diaphragm, although it doesn't affect his sleep but it does with some babies.

Maybe worth a shot?

Good luck, you have my sympathies

Pinkzebra21 Wed 12-Aug-15 23:13:53

Thanks everyone for the suggestions and support. Not sure how much longer I can keep this up.
Littlemisslady - I caved yesterday and put him down on his tummy and he slept for 2 hours. How do you cope with the separation anxiety? And is the reflux better now?
Blue - good suggestion, but DS not keen on chairs/rockers at the moment, hoping this will change soon!
Seasidedolly - thanks for the suggestion of cranial osteopath, definitely worth a try.
Purpleboa - thank you and sorry to hear you are not getting much sleep either, hope it improves soon.

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