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Please help with naps - we can't live like this!

(10 Posts)
MaverickSnoopy Tue 11-Jun-19 10:27:22

Nearly 8mo DD3 isn't napping well. She's currently teething and has full blown cold. Since teething has resumed she has taken to only having approx 1 hour of naps (split into 2 or 3) which has led to lots of night wakings, early starts and said cold. Currently taking me an hour of rocking to get her to sleep.

Normally she has 2-3 naps a day at around 9am, 12:30pm and 4pm (though loosing interest in the latter) and needs bottle and boob in arms to get to sleep.

Neither is ideal as I'm starting childminding in a few months and need to teach her to self settle. She used to do it!!! I don't know how. I have a nearly 3yo at home with me so for naps set her up with books and toys in her room. She lasts about 30 mins before she wants to go downstairs and either talks loudly through the door or gets fed up.

It's not fair on any of us (especially my other DC) and I'm spending so long now trying to get her to sleep I have no time to do anything else. My list of things to do is piling up (things that can't wait - not housework) and I'm pushing midnight before I get to bed and am getting ill myself. Not to mention that she's currently up at 4:30am and wanting to be held in my arms. I am broken and need to get back to me so I am ready to start working soon.

These are the facts/constraints:
* She will sleep a 10 hour stretch over night but wake at 430/5 and only go back to sleep if held and will then sleep until 7 (we have tried leaving her and putting her to bed later and it mucked up daytime sleep for weeks)
* She will not nap out of the house at all
* We are out of the house between 830 - 0915 and 230 - 330 daily for school run
* She will nap in my arms or a sling (I have sciatica and tendonitis so can't really do the latter) but not out of the house
* The more day time sleep she has the better she sleeps at night

I'm totally open to a routine change but it has to fit in around school. I'm happy to sleep train but I'm at a loss as to what would be most suitable with a bored 3yo.

Please please please. Someone help - I've been dealing with her early starts since she was 3mo and she's finished me off with her lack of napping/settling to sleep! I'm exhausted.

MaverickSnoopy Tue 11-Jun-19 14:00:34


Bananarama12 Tue 11-Jun-19 14:04:19

CC worked for us, but obviously not when teething or ill.

MaverickSnoopy Tue 11-Jun-19 15:55:07

Yes this is what I was thinking. It's supposed to be short and sharp isn't it, ie work over a few days? Is it the same as cio?

Only problem is that I don't know how to un-ill her without sleep. Sleep is what makes her well 😣. She's also been teething non stop since she was 3mo with very little gaps. I'm not feeling vastly hopeful that the stars will align!

It's just a nightmare - I tried nap at 130 and just as she got to sleep my 2yo called for the toilet which woke up baby. By this point it was nearly time to go to school. Got to school and baby just asleep (miraculously but by this point had been up for 4 hours) and 7yo wakes her up! Now stood in kitchen trying rock her to sleep and simultaneously cook dinner because 7yo has swimming soon. I don't even know how to fit in homework. On top of that I'm poorly myself (from lack of sleep and no rest). I had it all sussed until the sleep well and truly went to pot. Perhaps I shouldn't care so much. But I do. Sleep is my core belief.

Mississippilessly Tue 11-Jun-19 18:41:13

I have no advide but utter sympathy. My son's naps rule my life and its shit. I look at other mothers who dont seem to care and I'm so envious.

MaverickSnoopy Thu 13-Jun-19 06:58:15

Thanks ☺ It is shit. Have looked at controlled crying but I don't really understand how to do it.

I did try doing something similar about a month ago. Left her and she babbled away for about 5 mins and then was fussy for 5 mins and then started crying and so after 2 or 3 mins went in and gave her a cuddle but she didn't settle in my arms so I put her down and left and she continued crying and I waited a few more mins and repeated, by which point she was utterly hysterical and struggling to breath so I held her until she calmed down, except she didn't really, she just conked out on my shoulder.

I guess I don't really know whether I should be holding her until she calms down or leaving her in a hysterical state. Neither seemed to work. I struggle to make quite decisions in the moment based on her behaviour. If I knew what I should be doing in response to each signal then I could be consistent.

This is probably the fourth time I've posted on MN about this over the last 4 months and each time I have only ever had one or two replies. It's so disheartening. Lots of sympathy which is lovely but I can't help but feel like I've got an impossible challenge. I can't be the first person to go through this surely...

Nighttimenope Thu 13-Jun-19 07:09:45

I’m sorry you haven’t hsd more replies. I once posted on here in sheer desperation (see the username that was borne from the occasion) but received none and it was absolutely rubbish.
Plenty experience with poor napping/sleeping here but not at the specific age and stage you’ve described. CC is how I default when things go out of control with babies (after trying rocking, shush pat etc.) I’ll come back to you on this today as I want to do it justice. It sounds like you’re in a really hard position with older children to care for too and you desperately need real rest yourself. What help/support do you have at home? flowers

DoraNora Thu 13-Jun-19 07:13:40

Poor you! It sounds exhausting. Only one DC myself but I relate to the feeling of their naps ruling your life. Currently trying to teach 5 month old DD to self settle as she literally stopped napping, all the things that used to work including feeding to sleep no longer cut it so we have no choice!

Something that struck me from your last post that tallies with my initial attempt at sleep training is that when you attempted CC (btw controlled crying is going in periodically, cry it out is literally just leaving them to it) you went in after only a couple of minutes. That's a perfectly acceptable amount of time BUT what I've found with my DD is that as soon as I go in and especially if I pick her up she becomes hysterical. Spoke to a sleep consultant who said I'm overstimulating her, so I tried leaving her to fuss for longer .... And she went to sleep! 10 minutes of fussing, 5 minutes of crying (not hysterical) then sleep!

It's only been two days so far (and not worked for afternoon naps) so I REALLY don't want to jinx it but I thought perhaps something similar might be going on with your DD.

Mine apparently needs a blackout blind, white noise and to be left alone!

Good luck x

MoreSlidingDoors Thu 13-Jun-19 07:14:06

8 months is a big sleep regression and peak separation anxiety point. It’s probably the worst time to attempt sleep training - and that’s without the cold and the teething.

Nighttimenope Thu 13-Jun-19 15:00:23

Hi OP- I’m back. I know you’ve given quite a lot of details but just wanting to check a few. Will your DD not sleep in pram or car seat? (Not because I disbelieve you, because I’m just wanting clarity before making suggestions!) Do you have a partner at home, what are their hours/job? How many other children have you got? What do you use to help her with her teething and the cold? How many feeds does she have a day, and what kind? How is weaning going?

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