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Pls can I have some moral support, starting to teach DS 3mths to self-settle tomorrow!

(29 Posts)
amazonianwoman Thu 07-Jun-07 13:23:51

I just can't take any more of cuddling/rocking/feeding DS (12wks) to sleep, only for him to wake within 10mins of his head hitting the mattress, or waking in his pram the minute I stop pushing and stick the key in the front door, or waking in his car seat the minute I pull up on the drive.

SO, tomorrow we start, except I'm not sure how??!! I don't want to do CC as he's barely 3mths (don't like it anyway and never had to resort to it for DD) I'm re-reading the Baby Whisperer and NCSS tonight for inspiration

Pls wish me luck! I have 4-5 days with DH at home to keep DD out of the way. How long do you think it will take til I can put him in his cot drowsy but not asleep so that he falls asleep himself?????

Gursky Thu 07-Jun-07 13:35:12

Not much advice, I'm afraid - we waited until about 8 months - but still wanted to offer moral support! I remember how draining I found the feeding to sleep, so good luck!

myjobismum Thu 07-Jun-07 13:37:02

sorry what is CC amazonion?

myjobismum Thu 07-Jun-07 13:41:40


castlesintheair Thu 07-Jun-07 13:43:21

cc = controlled crying

IME the 1st 3 months of a baby's life are like a "4th trimester" when they just want to be held.

Good luck amazonianwoman, I've got 3 DCs and after 3 months they all started to 'magically' settle themselves.

Tovik Thu 07-Jun-07 13:45:25

IMO Control crying is horrible horrible horrible to do but very effective. listening to him/her scream for two minutes solid is like five hours of hell. But I did do it with my first. The only way is to prepare yourself to give up sleep for about a week because you're in and out of bed all the time. And I had to use a timer, because I always thought the two minutes was up after about 5 secs. Then of course once they've yelled themselves to sleep you feel you must tiptoe in to make sure they're still breathing and not face down in the mattress at which point they inevitably wake up and it starts all over again. Other tips: white noise from a radio and hanging about endlessly in the bedroom not looking into his eyes. Basically it's all pretty ghastly but will be worth it in the end and if you don't like my tips then I will just offer huge moral support over the next fortnight! good luck with it

lummox Thu 07-Jun-07 13:50:39

Same as castlesintheair here - after ds1 I had a bit more faith that ds2 would do it by himself. As 3 months approached I started to lose that faith and despair, but he really did sort himself out.

We had exactly the same - never napped for more than ten minutes unless in motion/asleep on a person, but at nearly five months I can put him down for naps, kiss him and walk away. And we are down to one wake up in the night.

The only change I made was to really, really try to keep to set times for naps. Oh, and to try to keep ds1 quiet for the first few minutsesafter ds2 went down. This was a bit hard on ds1, who is only 2, but it was definitely worth it.

I'm sure that there are some babies that are just rubbish sleepers, but there also seem to be loads who get much better by themselves around the three month mark.

Good luck. It is a killer when they are so small.

myjobismum Thu 07-Jun-07 14:02:58

oh well i think i might have done CC (if what im thinking it is is right!) the midwife told me to try it at 2weeks old (only because he hadnt slept anywhere but my arms and my breast for 2 weeks - and although i could cope with no sleep, i had terrible mastitis and needed a break from feeding to get him to sleep thing - anyway - 2 weeks old, cried for 2 mins, 5 mins then 7 mins - then fell asleep for 8 hours and has been no problem settling ever since - 8hrs from 2 weeks til 5months, 10hours from 5 months til 11months and now 13hours - he only ever wakes in the night when ill and naps no prob during the day - but different things work for different people!

ProfYaffle Thu 07-Jun-07 14:14:01

I've been doing the same with dd2 (15 weeks) for the last couple of weeks. It was nowhere near as bad as I thought it'd be. The first night we put her in her hammock and she completely floored me by ... gasp ... falling asleep without a murmer!

It didn't last but the most we've had is 20 mins of going in and out to her before she settled down to sleep.

Her sleep isn't perfect, she's still up twice in the night but that's ok at this age I think and she re-settles really quickly and dh and I have our evenings back again. Now if I can just get her to have a good lunchtime nap instead of 4 short ones I'll be a happy mummy!

amazonianwoman Thu 07-Jun-07 14:46:05

Thanks all really appreciate your msgs (typing one handed DS asleep on lap!)

He's actually not too bad thru the night - settles 8pm (fed to sleep then held 4 ages ) wakes btw midnight and 3am, then at 5.15 EVERY MORNING with wind, struggle 2 settle him then. Except last night when he woke at 3, had HUGE breastfeed then chucked it all up then slept til 6.45 on an obviously empty stomach!

I excpect night wakings at this stage, it's the daytime naps where I'm struggling when having to entertain DD too

Will report back tomorrow

[Repeats to self: I must not feed/rock/cuddle to sleep; I can do it!!]

ProfYaffle Thu 07-Jun-07 15:01:05

I have the same problem amazonianwoman, I want dd2 to have decent sleep so that I can have a sleep too on the days when dd1 is at nursery. Still, she's had 2 naps in her hammock today, one was an hour long which is twice as long as normal so hopefully we're making progress there as well.

Good luck tonight.

amazonianwoman Thu 07-Jun-07 15:10:22

PY - an hour is quite good

Was going to start tomorrow! Guess there's no reason why I shouldn't start tonight??!! Yikes

Weegle Thu 07-Jun-07 15:13:17

We did a very slow process of teaching to self-settle which took a good few months to work but we started it very early on so maybe it'll take less time. Basically we used a lot of techniques from the baby whisperer, most notably shush pat whereby the baby stays in the cot but is being actively comforted by you. Then we gradually reduced to patting only. And leaving him more awake. But we did it SO slowly. It worked though and from about 4-5 months he would go down in the cot awake and settle off to sleep and also if he woke in the night. Also for naps. They were hard though, DS is not a natural daytime sleeper. We did end up doing CC when he was about 10 months not because of self-settling but because he was regularly waking in the middle of the night to play and then getting grumpy when he couldn't get back off. Good luck.

charliegal Thu 07-Jun-07 15:19:26

amazonianwoman- his sleep pattern sounds good. My 7 month old wakes up more than that (yawn!)

maxbear Thu 07-Jun-07 15:37:12

Did I start this thread in my sleep and then forget about it? I have a dd who is 2, a ds who is you've guessed it 12 weeks and feeds to sleep and won't self settle. He would at first but seems to have lost the art in the last month. Yesterday evening I decided that I was not going to feed him to sleep so I fed him until he was full to the brim and could not take anymore and then after half an hour awake he started crying having digested enough to make some more room so I fed him again, same thing happened about 3 or 4 times eventually he got bored and just fell asleep on his own However despite feeding a rediculous amount before bed he still woke up lots at night.

bagsundereyes Thu 07-Jun-07 15:54:45

Please keep us posted with your progress - dd is also 13 weeks and is not into this self-settling business either.

amazonianwoman Thu 07-Jun-07 20:38:57

Glad I'm not alone in this lack of self-settling malarky

Weegle - that sounds like the same approach we took with DD - worked a treat and now she's a great sleeper.

Charliegal - that's on a good night, sometimes he wakes every hour!

Maxbear - to falling asleep on his own but to waking up lots. Little monkeys aren't they.

Well, so much for starting tonight. DH rang to say he was going to be v late, DD had big nap this afternoon so was full of beans at bedtime, whereas DS hadn't slept since 2.30 and had gone into meltdown. So I fed him to sleep Crap

MegBusset Fri 08-Jun-07 17:48:22

Greetings... I'm also trying to help DS, 15wks, to self settle.

At the moment our bedtime routine is bath, cover in eczema cream (this can often make him grumpy), put in sleeping bag, BF to sleep then put in cot. But I would like to not BF to sleep, to see if this helps with night wakings.

Trouble is, after the bath etc he is so pooped that he always conks out on the boob - he feeds with his eyes shut so it's hard to tell when exactly he falls asleep (the sucking just gets more and more spaced out but restarts if you try to move iyswim).

So how do I stop him falling asleep on boob? Or should I just wake him after he falls asleep (and risk upset baby)? or move bf to another point in routine??

dueat44 Fri 08-Jun-07 20:32:09

Good luck AW! We had a terrible night on Weds (our wedding anniversary, natch) for some unfathomable reason, but generally our evenings have been much better since we started getting serious about bedtime and insisting that dd goes down without cuddles, dummies, fingers to suck, etc.

amazonianwoman Fri 08-Jun-07 20:52:06

Crap crap crap start

DS was up 4!!! times last night, and wide awake by 6am, so ready for a nap by about 7.30, except things were too hectic around breakfast time so I didn't catch him til 8am by which time he started screaming as soon as I got him to his room. Took ages to calm him, ended up having to rock him til virtually asleep. Into cot - and awake less than half a bloody hour later. Tried to resettle, no luck, gave up after an hour.

Tried again for next nap, caught him by 3rd yawn, same scenario, screaming every time I put him in cot, finally slept for - half an hour Gave up trying to resettle again after another hour.

By 4pm I'd had enough and we went for a walk with him in his sling, and he slept for another half an hour.

My almost 3yr old DD sleeps more than my 3mth old DS - aaarrrgghhhh

He finally settled tonight after falling asleep on the boob, cos I'd fallen asleep too No idea how to get around this problem MegBusset?? DS is the same, as he is during night feeds. I remember when DD was much older I'd feed her then read a story before putting her in her cot, but can't see that working yet.

Flipping babies, I hate the 1st 3-4 months!!!

Leah4 Sat 09-Jun-07 22:20:17

Hi Amazonian, how has your DS been today? You have my sympathies as my DS finds it hard to fall asleep without being breastfed or rocked in buggy. He is almost 5 months, and sleeps for 35 minutes a few times a day. I have posted a message about this. I am going to start putting him in his cot for his naps without feeding him which he currently does but he then goes in his pram, and see how it goes. My DS would also get overtired so quickly at 3 months. I used to try to get him in his pram for a nap two hours after being awake, and this sometimes worked. Would often have to take him out, but he later learnt to associate the buggy with sleep and I then stayed in. Some babies can only stay awake for 1.5 hours before needing a sleep.

DS awoke tonight after I put him in his cot. I was hodling him for ages, as I am so tired today. I patted his chest and left the room. He cried out after 10 minutes, and then DH went in picked him up, and he wen back in cot half awake after 5 minutes. BUT DH has been doing this every night this week so probably DS's new habit! I'm not sure if I should just leave him in the cot, rather than picking him up, and patting him on his back. Has got more upset when I've done that. So confusing!

amazonianwoman Sun 10-Jun-07 21:15:09

Thx for asking Leah. Things are going a little better, although I'm taking it very slowly - I don't want to do controlled crying and reckoned that plonking him in his cot awake when he's used to rocking/feeding etc would be a bit mean...

Yesterday morning he went down for a nap exactly 1.5hrs after he woke, I did rock him a bit and he became v drowsy really quickly, with only a minute of crying (much better than the usual screaming!) - he was virtually asleep when I put him in his cot but not fully. And he slept for 1.5 hrs - grumbled after 40mins but didn't wake. We were out for the rest of the day so he had a couple of naps in his pushchair - again didn't take too long to settle.

This morning he went down really easily again (sit v v drowsy when put into cot, although I'm going to gradually have him more awake over the next week or so ) - he slept for TWO hours, grumbled and cried out once but went back to sleep by himself

2nd nap didn't go quite so well - slept for 40mins and couldn't get him back to sleep, then took ages to get him settled for last nap and gave up in the end as we had friends round for a BBQ so had to put him in sling. He seems to get harder to settle as the day progresses. However he's been a much happier baby this weekend.

Unfortunately during the week it's harder to get him in his cot for his 1st nap as we're usually out & about with DD, but I'll keep perservering..

We can crack it

Leah4 Mon 11-Jun-07 22:30:33

Glad your DS is getting a bit more naps. So hard to extend the short naps to longer ones. At night when my DS was the same age, I used to put a hot water bottle in his cot so that he would not feel the coldness of the sheets after I fed him. Also lavender oild on a piece of cloth near the cot really helped ds to settle in the evenings. Singing the same song or nursery rhyme prior to sleeps acts as postive sleep association.

nairny Thu 14-Jun-07 07:57:46

My DS is 2 months and in the last couple of weeks he has learnt to settle himself and fallen into a good routine. Up to 6/7 weeks I was regularly feeding him to sleep which was easy when he was tiny but was becoming harder and harder and often ended up with him waking 10 mins after placing him in his cot. I eventually became so fed up with this that I decided we had to get sorted.
The best advice I took was from the Baby Whisperer and her 3 stages of tiredness. When I read that all you did was watch for 3 big yawns, give a big cuddle and then lay them in their cot awake to let them fall asleep I couldn't believe it would work. However, it did! He often needs to cry himself to sleep which takes about 6 mins (grisly crying as opposed to screaming)and you can hear him winding down.
This works like magic during the day. Unfortunately we still have an awful time in the evening. He settles fine after his bath but then wakes about half an hour later and will not settle again. He doesn't need food and is too grumpy and tired to get up so we spend ages trying to get him to sleep again. Thankfully he sleeps well during the night so by the morning we have forgotten the pain of the previous evening! Any advice for bad evenings as I would really like a meal with DH in peace???

bagsundereyes Thu 14-Jun-07 08:17:37

nairny, I can only offer sympathy. My LO (3 months) is also really unsettled in the evening. When DH is working in the evenings I live off soup, as it heats in five minutes, and I can wolf it down and prepare for the onslaught. I'll be watching this thread to see if anybody has cracked this one.

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