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Gradual withdrawal method with 14 mth old!!! Has anyone tried it with their LO?

(16 Posts)
pevie Wed 02-Jul-08 21:25:13

Am doing gradual withdrawal with my LO on advice of a sleep counsellor. We had previously tried CC briefly but it was so hellish we gave up. She previously had reflux but dr did biopsy and said she is ok now but she is still very windy so we thought gradual withdrawal was best idea. However difficulty is this is 2 weeks later and we havent moved on that much. I am still sitting by cot waiting for her to go to sleep at night which is taking about an hour, it used to take about 15 mins rocking her. She stands up a lot and I go out the door when she stands so she knows she must lie down, I go back and say lie down and sit by her. I tried to move further away but this was very traumatic so I just sit close to bed and dont touch her ( i rubbed and then patted for first week or so) We have only tackled beginning of night and not during yet although night has got better most of time since doing it. A couple of nights she has only got up once. anyway my question is about how long it takes, how quickly did you move away and what about during the night. Any comments welcome.

Habbibu Wed 02-Jul-08 21:30:05

Yes, we did, and it did work for us, but the first steps did seem to take aaaagggeess. However, the stages did get quicker and quicker after a while, and we're really really happy we did it. Top tips - radio with earphones, book with a booklight, cup of tea, glass of wine. Then just move the chair a foot away in a few days. The person not doing the sitting by the bed provides tea/wine/chocolate after successful bedtime!

Habbibu Wed 02-Jul-08 21:31:49

I'd say in total at about 10-11 months it took us 6-7 weeks, but the last few weeks were really short stints sitting outside door. Had to do a refresher at about 17 months, and that took about 2 weeks. It's a long haul, but painless and gentle.

pevie Wed 02-Jul-08 21:40:18

Thanks Habbibu. Did your LO stand up or do anything else whilst you sat there? If so, what did you do, did you leave the room or just sit there? I would say our biggest problem is the standing up. Were you feeding in night before you did it and if so did you just stop this, as I am still breast feeding once or twice a night?

Habbibu Wed 02-Jul-08 21:45:56

Yes, the second time we went through it. I'd say "lie down, or mummy will go out" - of course, she wouldn't - I'd walk out, she'd cry, I'd go straight back in, and say "if you lie down, mummy will stay". Took a few goes - probably about 10 days of doing this 3-4 times, but that was it. I didn't leave her crying, just warned her gently, left if she was standing - very quickly she'd lie down as soon as I stood, then I'd praise her gently, and just say "Time to sleep". She wasn't really that fussed on night feeding by that time, but tbh I'd just work on bedtime - do whatever works quickest in the night wakings to get her back to sleep. Once she's happy about going to sleep on her own at bedtime, you can think about cutting out night feeds if that's what you want (but also do feel free to ignore everything - am no expert!)

ScarletPimpernel1976 Wed 02-Jul-08 22:11:45

We're trying the this technique at the moment as had similar traumatic time with CC (her crying just escalated to howling and screaming and i would eventually crack and feed her). Ours was waking once in the evening and then once sometimes twice in the night and i would end up feeding her. Anyway, it has really worked, she has slept through the night for the last week and i haven't fed her during the night for the past 2 weeks. The first night or two it took an hour for her to fall back to sleep and from then on whenever she has woken up it has only taken about 10 minutes or so for her to drop off. Fortunately, she isn't able to stand or sit up from lying down yet (almost 9 months old) so that makes it a lot easier. She also is very good (usually) at going to sleep at bedtime. We had a nursery nurse who worked with the health visitor come round and discuss the technique after we had completed a sleep diary. Her tips were:

- put to bed awake (we already did this)
- the person who has to sit in the room should not be the mum (particularly if you are BF)
- only move the chair very small distances away (i.e. if the first night you have to sit next to them on the bed, next night sit very close to them in the chair)
- don't talk to them or have eye contact that stimulates them. They suggested reading a book while you are in there if you are able to see it without turning on lights.
- If they are really crying hard then you can pick them up and hold them until they calm down (no talking etc) and then lie them back down.
- if they stand or sit up gently return them to lying down but without tlaking etc.
- be prepared for it to take a couple of months!

Hope this helps or gives you some hope that it can work!

Habbibu Wed 02-Jul-08 22:13:40

We did talk, SP, but only the same key phrases, generally "Time to sleep", "Sleep now", very gently, very calm. Invest in a booklight!

pevie Wed 02-Jul-08 22:20:26

Thanks for that. I think there are slight variations on it but I have heard that if they continually sit or stand or jump out of bed you should leave the room but this is when crying occurs. We are also doing it with me sitting there as person we spoke to said that if DH does it she might just revert when I do it again and he is away over night quite a lot, but must admit I am worried about cutting out feeding. She is 14 mths so definately shouldn't need feeding and feeding does give her more wind so definately need to tackle it. she has gone to 5 oclock a few times without feeding so our plan is to try and not to feed her before 4.30 and then move it forward. am dreading it but it does give me hope that it took you hour initially and then got less. Will keep you posted.

Habbibu Wed 02-Jul-08 22:25:06

We did go back instantly when she cried, but if that doesn't work, perhaps just step or turn away, so that your attention is reduced rather than removed completely. DH and I took it in turns - one night one, one night the other. Good luck.

jellybelly25 Thu 03-Jul-08 10:23:01

With the crying thing, at the moment I am trying to sort of do something similar to this technique, but if I pick her up she immediately stops crying, then the second I put her down she starts again, stands there rattling the bars etc. I've been standing there stroking her cheek and lying her down again, because I was worried about picking her up all the time, but she does cry a lot while I do this and I hate letting her cry sad not sure really whether I am beign consistent or not? Should I leave her in the cot?

Last night she went to sleep after lots of patting, lying down, and a couple of pick ups, which took about half an hour, and even thoguh her eyes were closed, and I moved very gradually to the door, and made no sound when I left, she cried the second my foot went onto the landing!!

Out of interest, did your babies go to sleep happily before this? BEcause this is a totally new thing for us. Even when she was still waking to feed she was excellent at going to bed int he first place. V annoying!

mooki Wed 09-Jul-08 22:03:43

Please help gradual withdrawal experts... DD is just 10 months and her self settling has gone out the window since she learned to pull up to standing.

I have only just started gradual withdrawal but tonight was in her room reading for almost 2 hours with no sign of her settling down.

She stops standing and lays down now and again but then thinks of something else important to do (feel the wall, squeak her squeaky giraffe, have a poo, clap etc) and gets up again.

I tried praising her quietly when she lays down but that was just far too exciting and started her off giggling and sitting up again. If I lay her back down she finds that very funny too. Even mummy in tears at the end of her tether is amusing. In fact it's all bloody hilarious until I actually leave the room and then she kicks off.

In the end after over 2 hours I got cross and then felt guilty and then got upset and then ended up cuddling her to sleep as I didn't know what else to do.

I've gone directly to the sitting on the other side of the room bit, should I be staying closer her to her to begin with - I have a feeling that would just be even more entertaining.

oh bum, I think she's woken up...

mooki Thu 10-Jul-08 13:16:26

this morning's nap was just as bad... please help!

ScarletPimpernel1976 Thu 17-Jul-08 13:44:08

Hi Mooki, just seen your posts. Have things improved at all? Mine can't pull herself up to standing yet stand so its easier but the technique has really worked for us (see my earlier post for what we were told to do). Can your partner do the settling in the night? I found that my DD took much longer to settle if i was the one in the room with her. We were advised to start by sitting right next to her cot for a couple of nights and then move gradually nearer the door over a period of a week or two. She also told us not to talk to her or give her any stimulation/eye contact and to gently lie her back down if she sat up etc. Hopefully this post was unnecessary and you're all having lovely full nights sleep!


GreenFingeredMummy Tue 29-Jul-08 20:26:53

Hi Im a nubie to GW my dd is 14mths and has started the whole please dont leave me thing - really annoying as she was so good! I started last night with me standing over the cot but not looking at her and stroking her back, tonight I stood at the bottom of the cot and reduced amount of stroking, should I move away from the cot a little or stay where I am. I just read the bits about not speaking so I will try that as well. Would love to know how everyone else is getting on.

Created Tue 29-Jul-08 21:52:48

Mooki and Green fingered mummy.

My ds is 14 months old and until three weeks ago when we started GW was waking between 2-5 times a night. He had also become gradually more and more difficult to get off to sleep in the evening too, with lots of crying and yelling.

I looked into lots of different methods of GW, and merged two main types into one. This is what we have done.

1. I have done all these steps for four nights each (minimum).
Cuddled him to sleep in my arms.
Cuddled him in the cot,(our cot side comes down completely but some get in the cot with baby)
Arms through the cot
No arms through the cot but he could still touch me
Further away
Near the door.

2. No eye contact after I say goodnight.
3. No speaking/singing at all.
4. No response to anything he does to get my attention. Even if he throws his dummy or soothing blanket out of the cot. It stays where it fell.
5. No response if he gets up, which he does for most of the time. No interaction at all.
6. Keep as still and as quiet as possible myself, so he isn't used to noise in the room.

I think that point 4 has been the most difficult, knowing that if he has his dummy or blanket he would be off to sleep quicker, but it helps him realise that there is no interaction after 'goodnight'.

Point 5 is just tedious. But he needs to learn to get down and sleep himself, and he is much better 3 weeks on.

I am really really pleased with how it has gone so far. At the moment he goes to sleep while I lie on the floor with my head in the landing, I am going to gradually edge out of room a little more each night. It has gone from taking over 1 hour to 15 minutes.

It has been a slow process but I do think consistency has paid off. I have done this routine with his daytime sleep too. It takes patience, but CC is not the route for me.

I hope this helps.

GreenFingeredMummy Thu 31-Jul-08 22:28:39

Argh!!! just had a nightmare bedtime tonight. I was doing so well, two nights in and dd was asleep after 20mins with me standing in the room with her, but tonight she just kept standing up as soon as I turned my back. Think we got up to 80 times!

Am I doing this right? When she stood up I lay her stright back down saying 'go to sleep' as she just repeats 'lie down'. I didnt stroke her or speak to her again. Once she stopped getting up it still took another 40mins for her to fall asleep. I really struggled to keep my cool but after 2 hours she was finally sleeps. Anyone got any tips?

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