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Baby won't let me put him down, day or night!

(30 Posts)
SVAV2014 Wed 13-Apr-16 17:01:15

Hi there

I am a new mummy to a lovely little boy. Since he was born he hasn't liked being anywhere than on me and my husband. I have indulged him so far as I believe in the fourth trimester principle and that he needed as many cuddles as he wanted. This included not wanting to be put down at night and so co-sleeping with me.

He is now 6 weeks old and I'm starting to become concerned that I have created a habit that I can't break. I need to get things done in the day so I have started to try and put him down, but he just won't have it. I have tried swaddling, I have a sleepyhead, I have slept him on his front and his side but nothing works. He stays down longest on his front but we're talking 10 mins max.

I can't sleep as well with him in the bed and it has meant my husband has had to move to the spare room. I'm at the end of my tether with it as I just need some time where I have both hands, to get a drink or do some washing.

How can I transition him to accepting being put down? I have tried to persevere but he isn't a great sleeper so I have to rock or breast feed him to sleep and it takes quite a long time so by the time he is asleep I really can't face putting him down just for him to wake back up and for me to have to start the whole process again. he is a big baby and I'm only small so it's taking its toll.

Any advice would be much appreciated.

Many thanks!!!

Daffodil90 Wed 13-Apr-16 20:31:35

I think it's because he still has his survival instincts on alert so doesn't like to be left alone. This is what my health visitor told me anyway.

I was given the advice that when you put them down keep a hand on them stroking their head or stroking their nose or belly. This worked well for me. DD will go down now and we all sleep much better (if only for a few hours at a time) and i dont want to pull my hair out!

Hope it's gets better for you soon x

CutYourHairAndGetAJob Wed 13-Apr-16 20:37:32

I have the same problem except my baby is nearly five months old. I cope by carrying him in a sling so I can get things done while he sleeps. We also have a bedside cot / Co sleeper and a king sized bed so there is plenty of room for everyone

CodyKing Wed 13-Apr-16 20:41:12

Does he scream when put down - could be acid - prop him up -

Do you use the pushchair? Does he sleep in that?

fuzzyllama Wed 13-Apr-16 20:41:13

My dd was the same up until 10 weeks, then she just seemed to be okay being in her own bed at night but not in the day. She is now 21 weeks and can be put down in the day too. Still breastfeeding to sleep, it works for us so see no need to change.

Have you got a sling you could pop him in ? Go for a nice walk in the pram ? Should nod off in there and give you a bit of respite, even if you aren't at home getting things done.

I know it seems like a never ending inconvienace at the moment, but it goes so quick. I actually miss not being needed so much! Be kind to yourself, you certainly aren't making any bad habits, just giving your son the love he needs.

Flisspaps Wed 13-Apr-16 20:41:52

Get a sling for day times. Saved my life with whopper DS. He did not like to be put down at all.

EsmesBees Wed 13-Apr-16 20:47:42

You could throw money at it and buy a sleepyhead. Best £90 I ever spent.

However- Don't worry about creating habits. They do things in their own time. Some babies just need a lot of cuddles. It all works out in the end.

dakin1 Wed 13-Apr-16 20:52:03

My DD was like this. I would try putting him in the sleepyhead when he is contented and sleepy, give him a dummy and put your hand on his chest until he sleeps. You can also stroke his nose downwards rhythmically. My DD would sleep in a sling but it got too heavy for me.

SVAV2014 Wed 13-Apr-16 22:09:06

Thanks for your replies!

We do have a sling and he does like that and goes to sleep when I take him out for a walk but I'm only Diddy and he is already 11 and a half pounds so it's hurting my back. He doesn't like the buggy, will tolerate it for about 15 mins but then starts to get cross and he doesn't like his car seat so I'm a bit house bound. I'm finding that hard.

I have tried to give him a dummy but he won't take it, so he does use my boob as a comfort a lot of the time.

We do have a sleepyhead and he did go down in it when we first had him, but now it's like he senses being put down and he just hates it. He doesn't scream straight away; he will writhe around and grunt and then shout and then scream but I don't like leaving him to get to the scream part! It's like he senses that he is being left alone. If I do try to put him in the sleepyhead in the night (we have a snuzpod attached to the bed and I have the sleepyhead inside that) and he starts to protest, the minute I bring him back into bed with me he settles instantly.

Thanks for the reassurance. I am trying to do the best for him by being there for his comfort but I feel that I am a bit trapped inside. When I do manage to get out its stressful because he won't stay in his pram or car seat and so I end up holding him or rocking him which means I can't eat a meal or concentrate on a conversation. I hope it gets easier.


CutYourHairAndGetAJob Thu 14-Apr-16 08:23:13

What kind of sling do you have? I am 5'2 and can carry my five month old for hours at a time in the manduca, I could still carry my dd at two (stopped when I was pregnant). You may just need a more supportive sling.

MargaretCabbage Thu 14-Apr-16 08:38:45

I'm sorry, it sounds incredibly hard but unfortunately quite normal. If you put him down while he's sleeping does he stay asleep? I could manage to transfer my DS to the Sleepyhead when he was asleep at night but all daytime naps were taken on me until he was nine months old as he'd wake up as soon as I moved him.

What sling do you have? I can still comfortably carry DS at 15 months old, and it was a life saver for getting out of the house in the early days.

I did find that when he was old enough to take an interest in batting at toys he would stay in his baby gym contentedly for a short while, enough time to eat a sandwich with two hands.

I can absolutely reassure you it doesn't last forever at least.

Frazzled2207 Thu 14-Apr-16 08:59:16

Don't worry my eldest was like this, would literally scream if I put him down. As they get older they get better, I think at about 7/8 weeks mine consented to sitting in his bouncy chair for short periods. He's now nearly 3 and completely un-clingy.

SVAV2014 Thu 14-Apr-16 09:35:13

I have a close caboo carrier, and it really hurts my upper back and shoulders. There is a sling library where I live and a meet next week so perhaps I'll go and try some different ones.

As an example, I just rocked him to sleep, waited until he was in a deep sleep (around 15 mins) and then slowly transferred him to the sleepyhead. I waited 5 minutes for him to make sure he was asleep and then left the room. A couple of minutes later (unfortunately when I was mid shower) he woke and started screaming hysterically. He was in deep sleep!!!

Now I somehow have to wash my conditioner out!!

SVAV2014 Thu 14-Apr-16 09:36:52

Oh I also have a baby bjorn and he prefers that but I don't feel it supports his head very well

CutYourHairAndGetAJob Thu 14-Apr-16 10:01:45

I had a close caboo which was very supportive till about four months but you do need to make sure it is tied very tightly, and I found it hurt my neck if the cross was too high at the back. Hopefully the sling library can check if you are tying it properly.

If your lo likes the Bjorn then you can get a structured carrier like a manduca or ergo which is similar but more supportive. They are quite ££ but can be used till your baby is quite big - I could still carry my three year old a short distance in mine.

CutYourHairAndGetAJob Thu 14-Apr-16 10:04:40

By the way you could also try having your baby in the bouncer in the bathroom while you shower, the noise of the shower may calm him and even send him to sleep. That used to work with my dd (although unfortunately not with ds so these days I shower in the evening when dp is home)

CodyKing Thu 14-Apr-16 12:30:01

Put a folded towel under the mattress to keep his head higher than his stomach to stop acid burn -

He will scream for 20
Mins then back to sleep?

Then try again??

It's acid

SVAV2014 Thu 14-Apr-16 16:11:59

I really don't think it's acid as he has no other signs of reflux and isn't a sicky baby. He isn't crying a painful cry, it starts out as just protesting and when he realises I'm not picking him up (I try and leave him for a couple of minutes in case he drifts back off) it turns into a proper scream.

I probably missed the protest shouts when in the shower.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Thu 14-Apr-16 16:19:36

Hmmmm. I have 3 DCs, aged 3 and under. The youngest is 20 weeks so got some recent experience re sleep etc.

To me, what you are describing is not normal - I agree about getting him checked out for reflux. Thereafter, my thoughts are that he must be pretty tired. It sounds like he's not having any good long naps in the day. Plus, well for me anyway, it's not feasible ti have a baby who won't sleep in the pram etc and needs to be carried everywhere.

If I were you, I'd get to the GP and have him checked out. Then I'd dedicate a week to getting him to self-settle in his Moses basket/cot and be getting 3 good naps a day.

Put him down, full, clean, not windy etc. I'd then keep resettling him until eventually he falls over to sleep - even I was at it all day. He will get this.

Then move into the pram. With that, often babies can cry when they are overtired. Have you tried just pushing him for an extra 5 minutes or so - as long as he is not purple in the face - to see if he drops off?

Coconut0il Thu 14-Apr-16 16:39:13

DS2 always wanted to be held, very similar situation, he would cry if put down, cry in the pushchair, cry in the car seat. I thought something must be wrong with him as if he wasn't on the boob he was normally crying. He was totally different to DS1 who would be put anywhere with anyone!
As much as you can I would go with it, don't think it makes bad habits as I pretty much carried DS2 all the time. DP cut my food into pieces I could eat with one hand and I stayed on the settee most of the time cuddling him! As he's got older he's got much easier. He stopped the crying in the pushchair and car seat so we could go out without crying and he was happier to sit in his bouncy chair as long as I was in the room talking to him. He's 7 months now and quite happy most of the time to sit and play with his toys. He still does like to be held but no where near as much as at 6 weeks.
Truthfully I already miss those first weeks snuggling on the settee, even though at the time I thought I would never do anything with 2 hands again!

SVAV2014 Thu 14-Apr-16 19:22:06

I don't agree with letting babies cry it out so I don't think it would work for me just letting him stay for another 5 mins while he cries. He does have Long stretches of sleep in the night (albeit in bed with me) so I wouldn't say he is exhausted.

He is a very alert baby and wants to be looking around and taking things in, the health visitor said some babies just don't need to nap as much. I don't think you can really say anything is "normal" because all babies are different.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Thu 14-Apr-16 23:33:17

Pushing a baby in a pram for an extra 2 minutes or so is not letting them "cry it out". Nor is putting a baby awake in a cot and returning to settle them whilst they are in the cot or Moses basket. confused

Plus babies need to sleep during the day - not just at night.

I had thought that you were posting as what you were doing wasn't working for you but obviously it is so hope it all works out

SVAV2014 Fri 15-Apr-16 01:19:31

I am asking for help transitioning him from my arms/my bed from a crib/Moses basket and any tips that people may have relating to that. Thank you for your advice but when you mentioned him going purple I assumed you meant that he would be crying beforehand as it takes a fair amount of build up crying before a baby will turn purple. If I was incorrect to assume that I apologise. Thanks again for taking the time to respond.

Poodilicious Sat 16-Apr-16 14:09:31

Poor you - it's exhausting, I am in the same position with my 4 week old but have found a solution in the past few days!

For some people it's fine to have a baby permanently attached to them, for others (especially those who have other children to look after) it's just not feasible.

I, like you, thought that letting your baby fall asleep on you at such a young age would not create a habit - but trust me - with some babies it does. We went from having a baby that would settle fine in a Moses basket or cot to one that could ONLY fall asleep being held. The more you do it, the worse it gets as they are not learning to self settle and instead depending on you for it. I didn't believe the people saying "you're making a rod for your own back" but I sadly think it's true.

I've just spent the past 2 days trying to break the habit - it's been bloody hard but finally he's sleeping completely on his own & settling beautifully for all naps.

These are my tips:

1. Swaddle very tightly. If it's at ALL loose & they can move their arms then they'll get frustrated. Mine seemed to hate it & struggle against it but I persevered & now it really relaxes & comforts him.
2. Dummy. I was in 2 minds about this but it really helps soothe & comfort them
3. White noise - very loud. I use my baby monitor but you can use your phone or white noise machine

These 3 together really help comfort & soothe the baby which will help them transition from your arms to Moses basket.

The next step - and this is KEY. Make sure you put them down to sleep within 45-60 minutes from waking up. Not from when the feed started but from when they actually wake up. Newborns can't usually stand being awake for longer than this & if they become overtired it really interferes with the self settling process.

So feed, wind, change, swaddle and put down in Moses basket within the hour. Add dummy & white noise if you want extra help. Then leave them to settle. Most likely scenario is that within a few minutes they'll be crying. Go back in, pick them up, give them a cuddle, a pat, rock them - whatever they like. Then put them back down again. You basically just have to keep repeating this process again & again & again until they fall asleep. There's no 'crying it out' and you're not leaving them as you're responding to every whimper. But eventually they get used to the Moses basket being their lovely cosy place & they fall asleep.

I did this yesterday. The first time I went in around 20 times. It was horrendous & felt like it was never going to end. It was so tempting to just hold him in my arms & let him sleep there but I persevered! The second time only had to go in twice. The third only once! And now today he's settled first time for both naps! It's very liberating being able to put them down! Much as it's lovely to have cuddles, to have a baby that can self settle & is also amazing...

Anyway hope this is of help! Good luck! Xxxx

SVAV2014 Sat 16-Apr-16 14:34:50

Thanks Poodilicious for such a detailed response. I'll give it a go! We have had - few naps in the co-sleeper over the last few days and it's been great, only 20-40 mins and only a few times but it's nice to know he can do it, he just doesn't want to! Thanks again!

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