Baby waking minutes after settling at night - HELP!

(18 Posts)
Jam177 Tue 08-Dec-20 14:51:38

Hi ladies! Looking for some advice/reassurance about my 8mo LGs sleep...After the 4 month regression her sleep was pretty good, 1 or 2 wakes a night & easily settled back to sleep. So we moved her out of the next2me in our room & into her crib in the nursery. All was well for a few weeks but the last month sleep has become so difficult! I assume it is the 8 month regression - she is waking very often through the night but the thing that is killing me is that when I settle her back down in her crib, I'm sure she's fast asleep but then she will wake again somewhere between 2-20 minutes later (normally once I've got comfy back in bed!). I usually end up caving at some point in the night and bringing her into bed with me, where she stays much more settled.

Has anyone experienced this? Am I doing something wrong? Is it a separation anxiety thing? I just can't understand why she wakes so soon, way before the end of a sleep cycle. I'm also concerned that by bed-sharing I'm making it worse, because her sleep is becoming more dependent on being next to me; does that sound likely?

I'm really hoping someone can give me some reassurance that things will get better. All I seem to read is the two extremes - 1. CIO parents who say sleep got better in one night (CIO is not something I want to do) and 2. Attachment parents saying baby will be ready in her own time & that their LO finally slept in their own bed at 3yo (I'm all for responsive parenting but I'd really like my marital bed back sooner than that!!!) Any thoughts very welcome. Thanks in advance xx

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olderthanyouthink Tue 08-Dec-20 15:08:46

I don't think your making it worse, we're more on the side of when they're ready but DD is fed to sleep in our bed then put in hers and every time she wakes she's put back (unless sick or something) till we're in bed then from there she's in our bed (somewhere from midnight to 3am). She's just 2 now, there's progress it's just slow. I think she was older when I started putting her in the cot for the first part of the night but I also started with putting her there for naps because she was less likely to snap away instantly that way.

Also the, err, marital sofa or floor also workswink

Jam177 Tue 08-Dec-20 20:23:36

Haha! Thanks for your reply smile my husband currently sleeps in the spare room because I'm not sure any of us would sleep well if we bedshare all together sad

Do you have any thoughts on the very quick waking after settling? I understand if she wakes after a sleep cycle and needs me, but it's often just 5 or 10 minutes.

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S082018 Tue 08-Dec-20 22:22:18

@Jam177 I could have written your post OP! Happens almost every night with my 10mo. And I always cave and bring him in the bed too. Hubby also sleeps in the spare room!! Sorry I have no advice but just wanted you to know you're not alone 😊

Jam177 Wed 09-Dec-20 14:50:24

Oh bless you! It's so hard isn't it? How long has it been going on for you? Can I ask how daytime naps are with your LO? Mine rarely does more than 30mins at a time and I'm wondering if over-tiredness is playing a role...

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satsumasaturday Wed 09-Dec-20 19:44:00

I could have written your post 4-6 weeks back @Jam177. At the time my 7.5 month old was doing exactly the same - waking anywhere between 3 and 20 minutes after going back to sleep. So the time it took me to warm back up in bed again. I started to just bring him into our bed and Cosleep the rest of the night worrying about whether this would be how it was until he was 13 and feeling bad every morning! Then about 2 weeks ago at about 2am he wouldn't fall back to sleep in our bed and just kept rolling about. Eventually after about an hour I took him back to his room and he went to sleep on my lap and back into his cot for the rest of the night... he's slept there every night since. So hopefully just a phase for you as well and one day soon you'll reclaim your bed!

skkyelark Wed 09-Dec-20 20:59:16

My wee girl did the same thing when she was a bit younger than your little one, and in her case, it definitely was separation anxiety. Before she woke up, her little hand would be reaching out – if her hand found me, everything was fine, and she'd stay asleep. If not, awake and 'oh no oh no oh no where's mummy?!?!?' For her, it also coincided with very clear separation anxiety during the day.

We did cosleep to get through it, and for everyone's sanity, that was definitely the right choice. I did try to gently encourage her towards more independent sleep, but I can't say for certain how much that helped or how much it was just time.

If you think she's not napping enough, does she nap well in the buggy or in the car? Or even on you? It might help to get her into a pattern of decent naps by whatever means necessary, and then tackle where she naps.


S082018 Wed 09-Dec-20 22:38:26

@Jam177 it's been ongoing for months now! Occasionally we will get a chunk of about 2 hours of sleep but never more than that at one time. Then the wakings start and even continue when I bring him in the bed. It's just easier to settle him when he's next to me!
My LO is on two naps a day. One at around 10am and another at around 2pm (roughly). I am for his naps to end by 3.30pm so that he's ready for bed by 7.30pm.
Nap lengths can vary though! Sometimes he will do two 1.5 hour naps a day. But today his morning nap was 40 minutes but his afternoon nap was 1 hour and 50 minutes!
Have you tried adjustibg your LO's awake windows between naps? I did this and noticed a huge difference. My LO also used to be a notorious 30 minute napper.

GirlCalledJames Wed 09-Dec-20 22:51:49

We did the gradual retreat at 8 months and it got better in one night, but without crying.

Tangledtresses Wed 09-Dec-20 23:04:08

Okay this happened to me
So I put a very smelly slept in t. Shirt of mine under his sheet head height in his cot so it was secure and it really helped settle him as he could smell me! Worked a treat!

Zelda93 Wed 09-Dec-20 23:14:48

Hi my dd did the same at 8mnth and for six months she would end up in bed with me but I got very little sleep as she is a wriggler and would role about and nearly off the bed!! I ended up doing the leave her to cry .. I know some totally disagree with the method but it took 3 nights and she sleeps through now ! If she occasionally wakes which is may be 2 times in a month she cries for 10mins and goes straight back to sleep.. I watch her on the camera and I can tell if it's a poorly cry and if that's the case I do go into to her but I know she won't re settle in her cot once I go in.

RichTeaCheddars Wed 09-Dec-20 23:18:30

This is happening to me now too. My baby is 6 months old. We had a really bad regression for 3 weeks that started at 4 months. She would wake and scream and be so upset and daytime naps....forget it!!

We'd just started to see the light at the end of the tunnel and at end of last week it all started again.

She seems asleep in my arms, but as soon as I put her down she wakes up. Or will very shortly. We've tried putting her down awake but it won't work!

I'm hoping it's "just" another 3 week phase...

Hold in there OP!!

Jam177 Thu 10-Dec-20 12:08:51

Thank you all so much for your replies smile I'm desperately hoping it's just a phase that will improve without intervention, it's just sooo hard at the moment!

With regard naps, I'm just so bloody confused! There seems to be two entirely opposing stances - one saying sleep breeds sleep and baby needs enough naptime to ensure she doesn't get overtired for the night, and the other saying you need to build sleep pressure (so limit daytime sleep as much as possible) to ensure better nighttime sleep. Does anyone have any opinions on this? I've tried playing with wake windows but I'm just not confident I'm even striving for the right thing! LO seemed to drop her third nap recently, but I'm wondering if I should try and add it back in because when she only does 30mins it's ever such a long time to stay awake in between.

@GirlCalledJames what is the gradual retreat?

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Jam177 Thu 10-Dec-20 12:13:12

@skkyelark unfortunately she only seems to do 30mins wherever she naps, even in the car or sling! She will occasionally throw in 1.5hr nap but there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason behind it.

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Mmsnet101 Thu 10-Dec-20 12:19:50

I found the huckleberry app great for tracking sleep /food /poo routines as my lo went through the same thing, which I'm sure was partly sleep regression and partly weaning playing tricks on her pooping schedule, and she just doesn't sleep well if she needs a poo! She also hates doing it in her sleep! Once I worked that out it was easier to try and make sure she'd done her business before bed etc and that really helped.

She went from Co sleeping every night to in her own bed every night, however now she's 15m and we're back to a similar cosleeping /poo pattern, but now it's not so bad as I know it won't be forever.

This might just be my strange little one, but she's always been a multiple times a day pooper and has never been happy going to sleep needing one since she was tiny lol

In terms of naps /over tiredness... My LO will definitely not sleep as well if overtired and gets really cranky when awake so good awake windows are important for her. However if overtired she will eventually get past that to just knackered in which case she'll go down easily too. I try to just not put pressure on it, try her for sleep and if she won't go, then try again later rather than anxiously trying to battle her to bed, if that makes sense?

GirlCalledJames Thu 10-Dec-20 12:25:55

Just one page, there are plenty others, it’s not one of those methods that belong to an expert. The NHS recommend it too.
It’s a process but we went from 12 wake-ups per night to two the first night and one the second, and a few weeks after 11h unbroken sleep that have continued to age 3 and counting. (It did not work on baby no. 2, he was never extreme like this, but also took much longer to sleep through.)
I think for baby no. 1 what she was missing was the ability to fall asleep alone. Once she got it, she could link her sleep cycles, it was like flicking a switch.

Jam177 Fri 11-Dec-20 18:55:25

@GirlCalledJames thank you! Sorry if I'm being stupid here but after the first step of sitting with a hand on the baby, how is it any different from leaving the room? If I'm sitting a few feet away from the crib in a dark room, can baby actually sense you're nearby or something?

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Jam177 Sat 12-Dec-20 08:58:24

Also do you stick to the same method throughout night wakes, or just when putting baby down at the start of the night? TIA x

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