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Please help! Having blazing rows with DH about how to manage DS sleep (or lack of)

(28 Posts)
JuneBugJen Tue 19-Aug-08 13:58:48

DS, 11 months, has always been an erratic waker/sleeper. Taken recently to waking at 5-5.30 each morning. I let him cry it out until 6.00.

Doesn't seem to want to eat or really be awake (he seems grumpy) but will drink 7oz bottle. Otherwise has 2 naps in day totals about 2 hours-ish sleep.

He goes to bed about 7.00, I would put him to bed later but he spends from 5.30 onwards rubbing eyes and whinging.

Its making my DH and I have the worst rows. DH feels it is affecting him at work (he's a surgeon) and also affecting my work. (I work 3 days a week) We hardly see each other as I am in bed by 9.00 to cope with the early waking.

My DH wants it 'fixed' and will give Medised if DS wakes in night before 2am.( which pisses me off though as I don't think its a good thing to do.) In fairness DS always seems to have a cold/stomach bug etc and is ALWAYS snotty. The other day we had a screaming match about it and I sent DH to his parents house for 4 nights to get some sleep. DS was still rubbish at sleeping but at least I could deal with him without stressing about DH griping as well.

Feel like I am being torn between the two of them. Any tips with what to do?

JuneBugJen Tue 19-Aug-08 14:04:20

anyone?

megcleary Tue 19-Aug-08 14:05:19

you poor soul theres a thread here somewhere about waking them an hour before they wake early and it may reset their clock to wake later

ThatBigGermanPrison Tue 19-Aug-08 14:05:42

Firstly, bin the medised if your husband is inclined to abuse it. Secondly, take your son to the doctor if he's always snotty (although this might be teething, in which case nurofen is more apprpriate)

Waking at 5.30 is just something children do. Instead of letting him scream and waking the whole household up, get up with him and feed him his bottle.

Your husband cannot 'fix' your baby, there is nothing wrong with him. His behavior is normal and age appropriate, and drugging him is a borderline psychotic thing to do.

Did your husband not want children? Did he not realise that you can't switch them off?

And more importantly, has he not heard that Medised is contraindicated for the under two's?

mears Tue 19-Aug-08 14:08:31

You cannot 'make' the baby sleep - you and your DH need to find ways of getting enough of your own sleep. Do you catch any rest in the day when he is sleeping? I would do that rather than go to bed early all the time. You husband may be missing your company and his anger is more about the situation than the sleep?

Is DS in your room or his own?

gegs73 Tue 19-Aug-08 14:10:23

Its hard when they wake early, but I really don't think there is much you can do about it. Only thing I can suggest is making sure that his room is dark and he's not too cold or hot. Also DS2 went through a phase of early waking and we put books in his bed and toys which he played with for a while when he woke up which helped a little.

If your husband is getting stressed about it, maybe he SHOULD sleep at his parents a few nights a week until it gets better. Also what does he think you should be doing to solve the problem? Maybe get a clear plan of what he thinks you should do and do it a few nights so he at least feels a little more in control??

ChairmumMiaow Tue 19-Aug-08 14:10:39

Definitely bin the medised!

Have you tried putting him to bed earlier. I know it sounds silly, but my 7mo DS now goes to bed between 6 and 6.30 and his sleep is really improving (we've done other things too though). I would personally put him in the bath and get him to bed as soon as the eye rubbing starts - its what we do with DS and he settles much more easily.

My DS now has 2 night feeds (down from 3-10!) between 6 and 6. If you're happy to let DS cry it out (as I have on occasion) try a book called "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child" which I have found helpful with regards to naps helping nighttime sleeping (we haven't personally cracked the naps yet,but life is much more bearable).

I understand the trouble when your sleep is broken, but your DS is still a baby and your DH needs to understand that!

JuneBugJen Tue 19-Aug-08 14:11:10

TBH TBGP, I think he is borderline psychotic with sleep deprivation. He is normally such a kind and gentle soul it is killing me to see him tearing his hair out about this.

Also, I am not a great fan of listening to 'Farming today' at 5.30 either! The reason I wasn't getting him up then is that I thought it would work itself out. (he did used to make it to 6.00 sometimes)
I look like crap at the moment, feel short tempered also and don't know how other parents do it. DD is also finding being woken several times a night exhausting as well.

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 19-Aug-08 14:12:12

Message withdrawn

JuneBugJen Tue 19-Aug-08 14:13:16

Just got those other messages. Thank you, will get that book. Room v dark and nice and warm.

Agree though...will hurl Medised out of window. (but pref not at DH head)

Dropdeadfred Tue 19-Aug-08 14:16:48

How long does he say awake for if he gets up at 5.30am?

mears Tue 19-Aug-08 14:17:39

If he had a feed at 5.30 would he not got back to sleep for a few hours?

JuneBugJen Tue 19-Aug-08 14:23:26

'Gave in' and gave him feed at 5.00 other day, he then went straight back to sleep till 7.00. So can see may be worth continuing this... but have been worried it will become a habit.

Otherwise will stay awake until 8.30 if get him up properly, but seems a bit fractious during that time.

mears Tue 19-Aug-08 14:25:30

Please don't worry about habits that may form in the future because they may never happen. I always fed babies if awake at that time (took them into bed to breastfed) then we all got some more sleep. It is absolutely not worth the agony not to IMO.

Dropdeadfred Tue 19-Aug-08 14:26:16

I would definitely give him morning milk when he wakes, keeping his room dark and quiet and letting him know it still sleep time....hopefully you might be able to get in the habit of getting to him before he makes much noise, so dh and dd could sleep through it or not be disturbed as much?

mears Tue 19-Aug-08 14:26:22

By the way I never had children who had to sleep in my bed all the time and they all became great sleepers in their own beds.

Neeerly3 Tue 19-Aug-08 14:28:40

i'm afraid my dt's are 3.8 and still on occasion wake at 5.30! sometimes can be talked back into bed, other times, they get in with us, nick jnr goes on and me and dh dose for a bit longer. I hate to belittle a situation, but 5.30 isn't VERY early if he's going to bed at 7, still getting 10 hours, and 2 hours in the day, (someone correct me) isn't that enough for a nearly one year old?

When my dt's were around the 1yo mark they would wake perhaps 6am, but i would chuck their bottles in and they would drink and go back to sleep for a few hours, giving me chance to maybe go back to bed, or get up and shower and get ready without 2 screaming children round my ankles.

Not helpful, but if you have evidence that your DS is not the only child like this, your DH maybe a little more understanding.

Could you perhaps share the early morning wakings, alternate days so each of you gets a suitable lie in, in the morning?

Dropdeadfred Tue 19-Aug-08 14:28:44

Have to add that I also BF my dd3 whenever she woke night or early morning...then when she was on cows milk she used to have a bottle whenever she woke...it does not create a habit as they are still so little and they are always changing and evolving their sleep habits etc..he must be genuinely hungry or thirsty to wake up and then go back to sleep again.

JuneBugJen Tue 19-Aug-08 14:28:45

Oh thank you guys... that in some ways is what I wanted to hear.
Really agree that maybe giving into early feed is right thing to do but you are right Mears, the future isn't happening right now and perhaps I need to deal with now better.

JuneBugJen Tue 19-Aug-08 14:32:46

Agree Neeerly3, it doesn't seem that bad, but finding the days way too long as also leave house to see about 40 patients at 7.45 and back at 6.00 on 3 days of the week.

Also, its not just the early waking, its the tense 'through the night extravaganzas'.

Think I thought I must be doing something wrong as DD had slept from 7-7 with 2 hour naps from very early on. So was really spoilt with her!

Neeerly3 Tue 19-Aug-08 14:35:13

i would concur it's not habit forming - if you think about how you feel when you wake up, maybe a bit thirsty, dry mouth - quick sip of water and you can drop back off again. Same for baby, he's been asleep for 10 hours, he's gonna feel a bit dry lipped.

I think my two had morning bottles (whenever they woke, be it 5 or 7) until they were nearly 2. I went away for work one week and when i got back DH had moved them into beds and they had both, through choice, given up morning bottles, job done!

Neeerly3 Tue 19-Aug-08 14:39:40

my two also had night wakings for a period about 18 months old - night terrors kicked in, thye just needed soothing and resettling, but it still broke your night up and i was shattered after having the previous 15 or so months with them sleeping through. The only way we coped with that was again to take it in turns and have a proper agreement that X is doing it tonite and Y is doing it tomorrow, so that Y can sleep knowing that X is dealing with it. It should not be on one persons shoulders as that leads to resentment and bad feeling.

JuneBugJen Tue 19-Aug-08 14:41:16

That is true as well. I think a timetable is a good idea. Perhaps alternate on the days we are both working. And perhaps buy DH some earplugs! Thank you for your help Neeerly

ThatBigGermanPrison Tue 19-Aug-08 15:03:11

JBJ it's nothing you've done wrong, it's a different baby. Ds1 slept like a robot. Ds2 slept like a mayfly. They aren't cake mixes, they are ready baked, and you get what you're given!

ThatBigGermanPrison Tue 19-Aug-08 15:05:02

I think giving him a feed as soon as he wakes but leaving him in his cot migght mean he goes back to sleep for an hour or so.

Ds2 used to do this, to be honest I just fed him to shut him up as I was a single parent and there was nobody else to tell me what to do (or to take the burden!). He sleeps fine now, generally 7 until 7, and he's 2.

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