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Cry it out.

(30 Posts)
notanaturalmum Sat 28-Oct-17 20:05:14

I'm a FTM with a 4.5mth DS. He's lovely but I'm finding the whole mum thing really hard. I haven't really bonded with him but I've never been maternal really so I knew I would be like this. My husband is amazing with him (having a baby was his idea, I just went along with it)
My issue is with naps and sleep. Is it normal for a baby to cry for like 5/10 minutes when you put them to bed?
It's not a permanent cry it's on/off with a couple of whimpers but enough for me to be worried about what the neighbours think. I never leave him, I just kind of watch him in his cot. I'm worried I'm accidentally doing cry it out - that's not my intention. I don't feel the need to pick him up and fawn over him - is that bad?
He always falls asleep but I'm not sure if I'm being mean because I'm not rocking him or singing to him etc?
I don't want him to think I neglect him. I don't. It's just I'm not the huggy kissy song singing type of mum.
I do breastfeed him as I was worried I wouldn't connect with him otherwise. It's kind of helped I think.
So is it normal for them to cry a bit if you put them down awake?

crazycatlady5 Sat 28-Oct-17 20:13:21

Hmm your feelings ring alarm bells to me tbh. I was never maternal and in my mid 20s I didn’t even want kids but I don’t feel the way that you do. Have you talked to anyone about how you’re feeling?

When he is lying there are you reassuring him? Hand on the tummy? Kind words? Shushing? I kinda feel it is cry it out otherwise as he is crying out for your comfort. Does your partner know how you are feeling?

GailTheFish Sat 28-Oct-17 20:15:51

At 2.1 years my DS still sometimes cries while going to sleep, so I think at 4.5 months if your DS is self-settling with a little crying that's pretty good going. He'll know that you're there with him, so I think it's different to him crying it out. I think I've read a few articles about how some babies need to cry while going to sleep, something about realising tension (?). So yes, I think can be normal.

Simmy10 Sat 28-Oct-17 20:23:00

Hi OP. My baby is one month and he tends to wimper/cry for a bit when I put him in his moses basket to go to sleep. Sometimes I pick him up again and he falls asleep in my arms and then I put him back in his moses basket and he sometimes wimpers/cries again and then falls asleep. I think I may have got him used to this way. Does your husband tend to do something similar when he puts baby to bed? It could be that baby is used to a different bedtime routine with husband? I dont think you are being mean or neglecting baby. It's hard being a mum and sometimes the bond can take time. I have heard that babies can pick up on what their mum is feeling. So if you feel anxious at bedtimes this could be why baby cries/wimpers as he can feel that you are unsettled too.

riddles26 Sat 28-Oct-17 20:28:51

Yes some babies do cry a bit before they fall asleep, I work in a children’s hospital and have seen it many times both with and without parents there. When you are with him do you comfort him in another way? There is nothing wrong with not picking him up if he knows you are there in another way (such as patting him). You can just talk to him but babies prefer touch when they are young and it calms them down quicker.

As a professional, I’ve seen many different types of parenting and there is nothing wrong with not being a cuddly song-singing type of Mum - men are not judged for not showing emotions this way so why should women be. It also doesn’t mean you love him any less.

Parenting is a huge adjustment, give it time and your bond will form with him. As a pp said, they do pick up on your anxiety so try and stay calm and confident with him if you can

riddles26 Sat 28-Oct-17 20:31:16

If you’re worried about your feelings towards him, ask yourself what your husband would think if he saw you putting him to sleep..
If he would be happy then you have nothing to worry about

notanaturalmum Sat 28-Oct-17 20:39:28

If he doesn't stop then I say there there etc or pick him up and pat him and put him back.
But I don't feel the need to hold him forever until he falls asleep. So I'm worried that I'm not showing him love.
Simmy you are right. Even in the day when he's crying, it's hard for me to settle him. If I give him to my husband, he calms straightaway. I think he senses that I'm not comfortable around him. And even if I pretend to be all calm and relaxed it doesn't work. He knows.
My hubby knows how I feel and really makes an effort with the baby. More than the average husband I think. I guess because he knows I wasn't 100% up for having kids.
I'm hoping that once the baby gets older then I'll enjoy it more. Right now though I want to be sure I'm not damaging him in any way by letting him cry to sleep. We are right in the middle of a regression and it's so unforgiving. I am not enjoying this at all but it is a phase I guess.
I think other people like my MIL would be uncomfortable with my approach. But I'm not a huggy person. I have been described as sterile in the past.
If my husband saw me, he would probably think it a bit unorthodox but trust that I'm doing the right thing for the baby.

riddles26 Sat 28-Oct-17 21:04:01

You are not damaging him by staying with him, touching and talking to him as he falls asleep so please don’t worry about that.

In my line of work, I see babies who have been in hospital for the first year (or more) of their life. They aren’t held as they fall asleep as it just isn’t possible. Likewise with babies on NICU. I also see babies who come in for a short stay and go home - some of their parents do hold them as they fall asleep. However from all these babies, some cry as they fall asleep, and others don’t. It’s just how they are. In spite of this, almost all of them are happy and content and none are damaged because of how they were or weren’t put to sleep.

You will bond more as time goes on - follow your instinct. Many mums will openly admit to not enjoying the baby stage but loving parenting as they get older.

FATEdestiny Sat 28-Oct-17 21:25:46

Youre not doing Cry It Out, dont worry. cake

crazycatlady5 Sat 28-Oct-17 21:50:28

It sounds like you’re having a really tough time of it OP, take care of yourself and keep talking to your partner if you feel like you need to about your feelings x

donkey86 Sat 28-Oct-17 22:33:32

I'm in a similar situation, though my
daughter is only four weeks. I don't have any bond with her yet so it doesn't really bother me when she cries, apart from it being an annoying noise. She quite often cries a bit when going to sleep. We put her in her own room from three weeks and I try to wait five minutes of crying before going in to her. Sometimes my husband goes to her sooner, because, like yours, he's got a better bond and can soothe her better. But I don't think there's anything wrong with you letting your son cry for a few minutes, hugging babies to sleep isn't compulsory.

seven201 Sat 28-Oct-17 22:59:58

Donkey, 4 weeks is generally considered far too young to just leave them on their own to cry. It’s to do with the baby believing they’ve been abandoned I think. Have you or your husband done any research around controlled crying? I’m not against it at the right age btw (we did it at 6 months as it was the only thing that worked). Sorry you’ve not bonded properly yet. Have you spoken to your midwife about it?

Op, you’re there with the baby, your presence will be offering comfort. If it’s working then carry on.

seven201 Sat 28-Oct-17 23:01:15

Oh and donkey I’m sure you know this but you’re not meant to put the baby in separate room until 6 months. Lowers the risk of cot death I believe.

rhodes2015 Sat 28-Oct-17 23:02:02

Doesn’t sound like that’s “cry it out” op, don’t worry. I’m pretty much trying to do what you are with my 4 month old DD.
I stay with her but I don’t cuddle or rock her to sleep. She has a bit of a cry but then settles off. I pick her up and give her a cuddle if she’s full screaming... (very rare now)
I’m not a natural either. I’m also a FTM and this has honestly been the hardest 4months of my life. My DH has also found it difficult too though but we are both slowly starting to feel a bit better week by week and doesn’t mean we don’t do our absolute best to make sure she’s a happy healthy baby. Sounds like you are doing great to me and definitely not doing anything that will damage him.
Take care of yourself. X

seven201 Sat 28-Oct-17 23:02:11

But many people do anyway. Just wanted to mention in case you didn’t know. Not judging!

Sipperskipper Sun 29-Oct-17 07:51:30

You sound like you are doing amazingly, and that is not cry it out.

I also don't cuddle my DD (5.5 months) to sleep, and never have. I know people say you can't spoil a baby, but I was SO worried about having a baby that wouldn't be put down etc. I'm not super cuddly either, but we have an amazing bond, and she is the happiest baby I've ever met! (And she sleeps really quite well!)

notanaturalmum Sun 29-Oct-17 10:45:24

Thanks everyone. I feel much better now.
Spoke to DH. He says he knows I love the baby because I take care of him. And that I don't need to hug a baby all the time to show love. So that's okay.
Naps and sleeps are still a challenge and I feel like I've been through a battle each time. But it gets easier I've been told.

Oly5 Sun 29-Oct-17 10:51:42

I would never leave a young baby to cry for very long.. as long as you’re with him and soothing him in other ways and we only really crying for five minutes tops before he goes to sleep, then I think it’s ok. If he’s crying for longer than that you need to pick him up and soothe him and try again.
There is nothing wrong with a baby falling asleep in your arms, they are little for such a long time.
Being a new mum is really hard but it does get better and easier.
I do, however, think that if you’re feeling like this in a few months time you should speak to somebody. It’s not normal to feel no bond with your baby and you could have pnd

Oly5 Sun 29-Oct-17 10:52:17

*Little for a short time!

crazycatlady5 Sun 29-Oct-17 11:12:43

That sounds great OP, but I agree with PP pls keep an eye on your feelings.

If he is getting very distressed in the cot maybe you could give him some reassurance until he settles again. You know your family, and you must look after yourself flowers

notanaturalmum Sun 29-Oct-17 21:54:29

It's not that I have no bond. I do in my own way. I just don't show it through hugs and baby goo goo talk etc
But I don't want my baby to think that i don't love him. I smile at him and we do hug when I pick him up.
I was worried I might be damaging him because i don't do what conventional mums do in terms of smothering him with affection.
But I think that's okay. I feed him, keep him warm and clean and I take him out in the pram each day. And I read to him. So it's okay I think.
Thankyou though. I feel better now

Sashkin Sun 29-Oct-17 22:38:22

DS either drops straight to sleep mid-feed or mid-whatever he is doing, or he screams and screams until we pick him up. There’s no mid-point - if he dropped off after 5 mins we’d leave him to it, but he just gets more and more worked up and hysterical and holds his arms out to us to be picked up, so it would feel cruel to just sit and watch him IYSWIM? Patting and shushing makes him worse not better, he tries to grab onto our hands and pulls us towards him. Doesn’t sound like yours does that, or like you would leave him crying if he did.

I’m not really a goo-goo sort of person either, but things I’ve really found nice to do during the day with DS are baby swimming (can start any time from birth but realistically they’re more likely to get something out of it at 3-4 months), “dancing” with DS (Beyoncé on YouTube, waving his arms about in time with the music, singing along with the chorus), and baby music classes (I go to one called Hartbeeps, it’s a franchise so might be one near you).

Also wearing a sling - I bought it because my local station has loads of steps and no lift, and I couldn’t get the buggy up and down easily on my own. But it’s really comfy, and I’ve taken him out on long walks, round museums and all kinds of places in it. He can sit up and look around, I can chat to him and don’t have to drag a buggy round with me. I also noticed I tend to ignore him in the buggy because it’s front-facing and I can’t really see him.

Feel free to ignore, but I’ve really enjoyed those things because I’m close to DS while I’m doing them and we can have fun together, but they’re structured activities so I’m not sitting looking at him wondering what he wants me to do next.

Newborns don’t do much, but once they're past about four months they do start to play with toys and interact with the world. You’ll probably enjoy that phase a bit more.

gamerchick Sun 29-Oct-17 22:44:06

Babies can cry to block out the world. You’re not doing cry it out, he’s not crying very long and you havent just left him. It’s fine. The first year is just about keeping them alive anyway.

Not everyone has to do attachment parenting, stop worrying. The baby days are dull as fuck, they get more interesting as they get older.

Sipperskipper Tue 31-Oct-17 14:54:10

I think you sound like a wonderful mum! It’s so easy to get caught up wondering if we are doing everything exactly right, but you sound like you love your little boy, and are caring for him brilliantly. Agree with PP that not everyone has to follow the attachment parenting ethos (I certainly don’t, and she’s very happy and content!)

riddles26 Tue 31-Oct-17 15:15:15

I completely agree with sipperskipper and gamerchick. You are a great mum and doing a wonderful job. We all have different personalities and not wanting to be cuddly doesn’t mean you love him any less - you have your way of showing him affection and love.

Your husband sounds brilliant and supportive too. The bond with baby will continue to grow - from professional experience I have found that Mums are told that they should feel this instant rush of love when baby comes and those that don’t feel like there is something really wrong when there often isn’t, it just grows more and more with time.

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