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Napping (or lack thereof) at 6.5 months

(15 Posts)
ARAG Wed 20-Aug-08 22:33:10

Good evening!

My 6.5 month old has such a hard time napping. She resists and resists, even though she is clearly miserable if she doesn't get daytime sleep.

I can force her to nap... co-sleep with my boob in her mouth, or rocking her for the whole of her nap. (She really does not tolerate being transferred. As soon as I try to move her to her cot, boom -- she's awake.)

So the dilemma is: do I do whatever I can to get her to nap (which keeps her happy, aids development b/c she's sleeping, and allows me to introduce a sort of schedule) OR do I not, in the interest of not wanting to develop the habit of her needing me to sleep.

Basically: How do you get a non-napper to nap without setting yourselves up for real hard times in the future?

(Here's the weird thing: she goes down well at night, and sleeps pretty well at night, too. This problem is purely a napping problem. I do count my blessings that she sleeps well at night, but I feel like my current daytime situation means I have to deal with 1. being a human dummy or 2. stalling 'til bedtime with a clearly miserable little girl. Two pretty unhealthy options!)

Nat1H Wed 20-Aug-08 22:42:42

Have you tried her outside - well wrapped up in this weather!
My DS was the same - used to sleep like a dream at night, but in the day..... OMG!!
I found that if I put him in his pram in the garden, under a big tree - he used to go off no problem.
Maybe it was because I couldn't hear the screams as loudly grin

smallwhitecat Thu 21-Aug-08 10:19:41

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smallwhitecat Thu 21-Aug-08 11:27:54

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smallwhitecat Thu 21-Aug-08 12:29:10

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angel1976 Thu 21-Aug-08 14:17:03

Oh gosh, I have the same problem with my 6-month-old DS. He sleeps amazingly well at night - I put him down in his cot, he flips over and goes to sleep without fuss or a dummy. The daytime is another problem, he cries without a dummy, he cries when the dummy falls, he cries, uh, for no reason! Urgh! I have been up and down the stair all afternoon and I think he has slept a total of 30 minutes... [hmm[

smallwhitecat Thu 21-Aug-08 15:48:46

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RhinestoneCowgirl Thu 21-Aug-08 15:54:01

DS was a crap napper at that age, and a crap sleeper at night too, so no respite. ARAG - will your DD sleep in a buggy? At that point I was going out for a walk twice a day just to get DS to snooze a bit. When I felt lazy I did the boob thing at home and had a bit of a rest myself.

DS started napping independently before a year when I went back to work.

smallwhitecat - is your baby old enough to sling on your back? I still occasionally sling DS (2) in the ergo on my back if I need to get stuff done in the kitchen and am fairly mobile (have to be good at squatting tho...) Apologies if you have already tried.

smallwhitecat Thu 21-Aug-08 15:58:28

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RhinestoneCowgirl Thu 21-Aug-08 16:10:25

You might need to improvise a bit, maybe have DS raised up on sofa or bed, so that you can kneel down and change nappy. I've found that it's fine as long as you don't just bend over as normal, as feels like they're going to slip out of the sling (altho I think it would be quite hard for this to happen). I've unloaded dishwasher/washing machine and done cooking.

We mainly got the ergo because it is a fairly 'manly' sling and DH is happy to wear it wink. DC2 is due in December and I am keep to try out less structured slings.

angel1976 Thu 21-Aug-08 16:47:06

Hi SWC, I remember you from a lot of other threads. I was going to <wave> hello but was too shy so here's one now! <WAVES MADLY> I finally gave up at 2:30pm (DS went to sleep at 1pm, woke up at 1:30pm and then on and off till I gave up at 2:30pm!). I took him swimming and of course once I got home, he was rubbing his eyes like crazy and went down like a lead balloon 15 minutes ago! I am getting an Ergo as well (I think. A friend of mine is asking her mum to bring it for me from the States.). I guess I shouldn't really complain if his nighttime sleep is good...

ARAG Tue 26-Aug-08 21:03:30

Thanks for these replies all. I was offline for several days because my computer broke angry.

I was told that once DD gets moving that she'll wear herself out and napping might come more easily. I sure hope that is the case! As it is now, we are half-heartedly employing tactics in the No Cry Sleep Solution book... half-heartedly because 1) she just had a nasty reaction to avocado, poor little poop, and 2) we're off to Chicago for a week on Saturday and I know we'll be back to square one after that holiday.

The pram does work to get her to sleep. We do end up getting a lot of walking in! But I feel like a bit of a schmoe at this stage... nearly 7 months!... everyone else is getting their act together, it seems, and I still feel harried, hurried and struggling to get a bath because DD can only sleep if we're on the move. Sigh... we'll put our noses to the napping grindstone again after the week in Chicago to see the in-laws. Sigh...

Do other parents of non-nappers reckon that this is something that they grow out of? Or does it need concerted parenting to make it work? If the latter is true, what has worked for people?

Angel and SmallWhiteCat... hope you both are faring well with your non-nappers...

preggersplayspop Tue 26-Aug-08 21:22:40

Hi Arag, my DS (now 15 mo) was a terrible napper and not the most brilliant sleeper at night either. I tried some of the tips in the NCSS which helped a bit, but now I just think its the way he is made and he is getting better through growing up and developing rather than any special parenting I have applied.

He started off being unable to get past a 30 min sleep cycle and this went on for months, and he was grumpy a lot of the time because he was obviously so knackered. He's just a very alert baby and can't 'zone out' - forget sleeping in the buggy, I can't remember the last time he did that.

In the end I thought oh sod it, and I stopped fighting the fact he would bf to sleep. I just wanted to focus on what worked, as sleep (rather than how he got to sleep) was the most important thing for me. I made sure I would have a magazine to read while he was dozing, or more often than not I would have a snooze as well. I realise if I have another baby I won't be able to do this, so hoping next time around I have a baby with less fragile sleep patterns!

Over time its got a lot better (and I guess I am better at reading the sleepy signs). He is down to one nap a day (generally) and he will often have at least 2 hours at lunch time and can re-settle himself if he stirs. He's full of beans and happy and rested so it works for us.

PS he is at nursery 4 days a week as well and they get him to nap without bf (obviously) - I've no idea how they do it though!

Mummyfor3 Tue 26-Aug-08 21:31:50

DS1; terrible sleeper, day and night, NCSS helped, ultimatel needed 2 night of CC (20 and 10 min respectively) and has been sleeping v well ever since.

DS2: best sleeper in the world from day 1 and never changed shock.

DS3: now 22 weeks. My return to work forced change from co-sleeping and BF 3-8 times/night [exhausted emoticon]. Having forced him into his own cot, he now sleeps SO much better, it is unbelievable!! Wakes once at night for a feed and starts day between 5 and 6 am, which I can cope with. Also naps better!! Weird, I know. Only problem is, he will only allow DH to put him to bed... which is a bit of a problem during the day, although I find a trip in the pram and then leaving him well wrapped up in the garden often works.

Also agree with other posters: baba getting older seems to help as well as they do get more physically tired when they are more active.

Having said all that, IME personality clearly plays a huge role.

If you come across the magic wand, please share wink.

Mummyfor3 Tue 26-Aug-08 21:32:41

"ultimately", even. Sorry.

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