For those who didn't sleep train...

(18 Posts)
WeDontTalkAboutLove Wed 17-Feb-21 19:34:07

...how did you cope when your second child came along if your first was/is a terrible sleeper?

DD still wakes 1-2 times a night which in itself is fine, it doesn't bother either of us 90% of the time as she settles quickly, however we still have to hold her to fall asleep. No rocking, feeding bouncing etc but if we put her in the cot whilst still awake, she becomes hysterical alarmingly fast.
Last week, I had a bit of a panic with regards to how I am going to get her down for her nap with a newborn around and had a go at some degree of sleep training. I put her in the cot when she was nearly asleep, then left the room. She cried immediately so I decided to go to the loo (to keep myself preoccupied hmm) and by the time I had returned, less than 2 minutes later, she had vomited through crying so hard.

So I guess my questions are, for those who didn't, wont or can't sleep train:
How did you get one down for a nap when alone? (this is my biggest concern)
How long did it take your first born to sleep through?

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WeDontTalkAboutLove Wed 17-Feb-21 19:36:18

Sorry, I should add - baby 2 is due in 5 weeks!

OP’s posts: |
WeDontTalkAboutLove Fri 19-Feb-21 20:12:09

Anyone? sad

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hodgepodge21 Sat 20-Feb-21 09:39:24

How old is your DD? When did you try leaving her - was it at nap time or bed time? The easiest time to practice self settling is at bedtime as this is when they are the tiredest. Methods for this depend how old she is!

crazychemist Sat 20-Feb-21 16:38:14

How old is your DD? Crying from vomiting sounds like sleep training might not be a good option.

Isadora2007 Sat 20-Feb-21 16:42:12

Daddy slept in a double bed with the older one and I had the newborn. Slept through around 3.5 years old. Needed some company until then tbh.

NC866 Sat 20-Feb-21 16:53:59

I still had to settle my 2 year old to sleep when I had another baby. It wasn’t that bad to be honest, just brought the newborn up with me and they chilled out in their bouncer / sleepyhead or if they weren’t quiet id feed them while sat next to my toddlers bed holding her hand. I think I got out of the habit of physically holding her to go to sleep before the baby came as I found it too hard whilst heavily pregnant to lift her into the cot gently etc. She quickly moved into a bed after baby came which helped. To be honest you will just find a way so don’t stress about it, things just work themselves out smile

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DaisyF1986 Sat 20-Feb-21 18:50:09

My dd was 4.5 when ds came along and she still wasn't sleeping through sad waking perhaps 4-5 times a night. It increased to roughly every hour when he arrived and in the end we hired a sleep consultant to help. It was the best money we've ever spent and I wish we'd done it sooner. I then didn't hesitate to train my son when he got to 18 weeks.
I'm now training as a sleep consultant myself as I see so much benefit in helping families to get sleep. It literally changed our lives.
The training with my dd was very gentle and she was not left to cry at all. Let me know if you want any more information on what we did xx

WeDontTalkAboutLove Sat 20-Feb-21 19:57:07

Thank you for replying everyone.

DD is 16 months. I know it's not abnormal to still have night wakings at this age but it absolutely feels it when absolutely everyone else I know with a baby is shocked that we are still getting up with her!

I tried leaving her at bedtime, post cuddle and she was definitely very sleepy when she went into the cot. The crying started as soon as I had laid her down but I expected to have enough time to pop next door to the loo and back. Her escalating to the point of vomiting in that short time was quite shocking.

@crazychemist I don't have any wish to attempt sleep training again following this incident. It really upset me. Hence asking what people did if they chose not to sleep train!

@NC866 This is incredibly reassuring, thank you. I suppose there isn't really any other option than, even at the worst times, we will get through it!

@DaisyF1986 I would love to hear what worked for your DD or any tips at all! I definitely don't think I could leave her to cry but I am getting a bit desperate.

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NC866 Sat 20-Feb-21 20:02:57

Oh gosh only 16 months OP, definitely completely normal that she wakes in the night and needs you there to get to sleep! Don’t worry what anyone else says. You’re definitely not the only one in this boat. You will find your way when the baby gets here, you just have to! Make sure your partner is helping though. I found that my dd developed a stronger bond with her dad as he had to do more bedtimes and night wakings etc once the new baby arrived and she would more readily accept him instead of me than she did before. Which made me both happy and sad! Basically you’ll muddle through and find your own ways that work for you.

NC866 Sat 20-Feb-21 20:04:56

Also just to add that my dd was the same when we tried leaving her to cry, would end up being sick and I just couldn’t do it. She started sleeping through of her own accord just before she turned 2. They all get there in the end.

smeerf Sat 20-Feb-21 20:08:33

Dad takes all responsibility for the elder child's bedtime/night waking. Mum cares for newborn.

When I took the side off DS1's cot at 20m, it really helped. He just couldn't stand being trapped in the cot. Just an idea for when they're a bit older.

Tier500 Sat 20-Feb-21 20:11:55

Didn’t sleep train. DD woke once in the night from 13 months and would come into our bed from that waking (usually around 4am). At 2 exactly she started sleeping through abs also falling asleep without us in the room. We started popping out to get something/go to the loo and one time she fell asleep while we were out and that was that. Baby 2 was born when she was 2.5 and is 3 months - all of her naps are in the sling on me.

DaisyF1986 Sat 20-Feb-21 20:18:37

@WeDontTalkAboutLove we used a gradual retreat where you gradually wean them off needing you to fall asleep. So first few nights you're right next to them, patting, shushing etc until they fall asleep. Then every few nights move a little further away. Same if they wake in the night. My daughter didn't cry at all because we were right there with her. It took a few weeks and we had to try really hard to be consistent especially if she had a bad night, but she now sleeps 6.30-6 pretty much every night!
Good luck with whatever you do xx

WeDontTalkAboutLove Sat 20-Feb-21 20:28:48

Thank you all - I do appreciate you all taking the time to reply.

She is very young and really, if we didn't have the pressure of the second baby arriving soon, we wouldn't try to change anything. Neither of us mind holding her to sleep as it isn't strenuous and she settles fast most of the time. Her night time waking isn't ideal but it is predictable and neither of us feel like total zombies!

Thank you @DaisyF1986, I think we will try that very gently over the next few weeks.

I think I also need to relax a bit about it - it's only naps where I will be alone and my husband can take on one when he is home!

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MsChatterbox Sat 20-Feb-21 20:44:31

Does she fall asleep in the pushchair? If so you could wear baby and get her to sleep on a walk and then leave her in there to nap?

Radglags Sat 20-Feb-21 20:48:29

Expecting to be in a similar situation (18 month cosleeping through night and naps in pram in living room).
Overnight she will cosleep with dad and I will sleep with baby in next to me crib, daytime I think baby will just be in a sling a lot so I’m not for seeing too many issues with naps.
Car naps are always a back up for us too so can just take them both for a drive in the day if things are going pear shaped!

crazychemist Sat 20-Feb-21 21:59:04

Ah, 16 months is still quite small. Tough to have such a small age gap! I can’t empathise with that very easily, we have a much larger gap (just the way it worked out).

My DH is on duty in case of night wakings (although DD is much older than yours, so it’s really rare, but in case of nightmare or needing a wee etc...). If your DH can settle her then I’d suggest you divvy it up - you are in charge of the new baby, he is charge of your toddler. That’s quite hard on you, because you’ll bear the brunt of it, but you’ll also be the one on maternity leave (I assume).

Car naps and pram naps? As a way to get both asleep at the same time they can’t be beaten. As I say, I haven’t done it with my older one as she’s past napping, but I do it with my twins as otherwise getting them to sleep at the same time can be a nightmare. Hopefully your new baby will like sleeping in a sling sometimes too.

You will manage, please don’t feel stressed. You’ll fall into a routine in no time and find a way that works for you and your family.

I never did sleep training. Don’t feel that you have to unless it works for you - the DO grow out of waking and you won’t still be up at night when they are older just because you didn’t sleep train them as a baby. My DD has slept incredibly well since she was about 2.5, with no input from us. If left till her own devices she’ll happily snooze till about 9am (which is great!). Do what works for you now. If it doesn’t work for you in the future, you can always make changes then.

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