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4 week old will only sleep on me at night

(9 Posts)
Ellieo Wed 05-Sep-07 12:27:45

DS2 only seems to settle when he's in my arms or on my chest. I breastfeed him to sleep and if he's really deeply asleep I can sometimes put him in his moses basket for the first part of the night. But when he wakes up after that he'll only sleep on me - if I try and put him back in his bed he fusses and eventually cries (I don't really want him to wake DS1 so I always pick him up). It's very tiring for me as I don't sleep well with him on me, plus I'm worried about "creating a habit". Any ideas or suggestions? Am I making a rod for my own back in the long run, or is it OK to go with it for the time being and start thinking about sorting out his sleep when he's a bit older? DS1 never wanted to sleep on me, but turned out to be a nightmare sleeper anyway, not sleeping through until he was 20 months old! Don't want a repeat performance from DS2!

Gipfeli Wed 05-Sep-07 12:44:38

DD was like this. I used to sleep sitting up in bed with her in my arms and wake up with my neck so stiff I had to move it with my hands!! She could tell the moment I laid her down, even if it was right next to me in the bed. Good news is that she did grow out of this. Gradually she started sleeping longer and longer and letting me put her back in her bed after feeding in the night. I didn't do anything particularly. I guess she just needed the security at that young age. I was too tired and worried about waking DS to do anything other than go with the flow. (The less good news is that she was about 5 months old before she did it so if your ds2 is similar you may have a way to go.)

She's a fab little sleeper now (17 months) btw, goes to bed very happily, sleeps all night, can settle herself back to sleep if disturbed and wakes up happy.

Sam100 Wed 05-Sep-07 12:44:41

I have had 2 babies (no 1 and no 3) that would not settle at night and refused to go in the crib we had prepared and would only settle sleeping on me. The other one was fine and slept quite happily in the crib until 5 months old.

I kicked hubby out of the bed onto the couch first time and spare room for no 3 and took the babies into our bed. This is obviously something that health visitors don't or can't advocate as there are risks. But i don't smoke and was not drinking and it worked for us. I slept better with them beside me and they slept better too. I used to put them in their gro bags on top of the duvet, away from the pillows and lie next to them. I never seemed to move when asleep and would wake up in the same position, but felt like I had had a good sleep. I figured this was a better solution than risking falling asleep while sitting on the sofa downstairs trying not to wake everyone else.

I did this with no 1 until she was 10 weeks old then put her into the big cot as I had a bad cold and did not want to be breathing on her at night. She went fine into the cot. If you are not comfortable with the idea of co-sleeping you could try putting the cot right next to your bed and see if baby will settle better - DD1 just seemed to hate the feel of the crib but was happy in the cot.

I did again with no 3 until he was about the same age then put him back in the crib at about 10 weeks. He was all mixed up with the day and would sleep all day and be restless at night.

None of ours have slept through until they were crawling (about 9 months) but all have good sleep patterns now!

Go with what feels right for you - you are the best judge of your baby. I don't really believe you can sleep train them until they are well past 6 months.

Ellieo Wed 05-Sep-07 17:43:55

Thanks for the info - oh dear, maybe I'll have to wait 5 months before it gets better... Part of my problem is that I fall asleep too (though a fitful sleep)and wake up just as DS is starting to be unsettled and need feeding again, so he's never at that deep sleep stage where I can try putting him down. I just really don't want him to get into a bad habit, especially as we'd only just got our nights back when he was born! With ds1 I feel I was a lot more clued up about how to get him into a routine - now I feel like I don't have a clue how to do a routine for ds2 or how to fit that into DS1's routine... god, I feel like such a first-timer!

flowerybeanbag Wed 05-Sep-07 17:47:33

I don't think they can get into bad habits at this early age can they? Please correct me if I'm wrong someone, but I would say you've got a few weeks before you need to worry about that.
And they change so quickly at that age that give it a couple of weeks and he might be sleeping fine in his basket.
congratulations btw

flowerybeanbag Wed 05-Sep-07 17:48:57

And just to add, at 4 weeks I believe I was thinking I would never sleep again.
DS is now nearly 4 months and has slept through every night since his 3 month birthday.. grin

Gipfeli Thu 06-Sep-07 09:21:47

Ellieo, this sounds so much like me and dd. I would wake up from my sitting-up sleep, see her asleep and think "ah I'll just pop her back in her bed" but then she was also not in a deep sleep and as soon as her back hit the mattress she'd be awake and howling.

You know I wouldn't worry about getting into "bad habits" at this stage. In my experience of mine and friends' babies, they are all completely different and there's little point in trying to "make" them do something they don't want to do.

I know you don't sleep very well when ds2 is sleeping on you but if you think you can sleep well enough to get by for a bit longer I would just go with it personally. If you want to change things because you really need more sleep yourself then try something (I have no ideas for what tat "something" might be, sorry!) but if your main concern is making a rod for your own back then I would say don't worry yet. Who knows what the difference in a few weeks might be? I know you've had problems with ds1 but that doesn't mean ds2 will be the same.

Ellieo Thu 06-Sep-07 11:17:33

That;s really good advice. To be honest my main worry is the habit thing, but you're right he is a bit young to be getting any habits yet. I seem to get enough sleep to just about get by on, so maybe I'll just go with it for now and see what happens in acouple of weeks! By then I'll probably have a completely different thing to worry about!

D2Jenx Thu 06-Sep-07 18:47:00

My son is one month old today and he sounds exactly the same, Ellieo. He wakes at 1, has his feed and is fine to go back into his moses. His 4 oclock one comes along and he wakes as soon as he is put back down.
A friend suggested i put him to sleep in the position he falls asleep in (fetal) so i tried it last night and he stayed asleep, even slept an hour longer.
I know some people dont agree with babies sleeping on their fronts, i must say i am one of them, but i thought i would give it a go and it worked. I must admit i did continuously check him.
So now i have to decide whether to stick with it or not. Good luck.

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