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Pick up put down suddenly not working - anyone experienced the same?

(7 Posts)
Sufi Sun 24-Aug-08 09:18:35

DS has always been a c**p sleeper. He's now 9mo. WE used PU/PD at 6mo and he went from waking every 1-2 hours to just 1-2 times a night. When he did wake up, we used PU/PD and he settled quickly and with no fuss.

I was happy with this and it seemed to be helping him learn to sleep - we even had a few nights where he slept through. Most importantly, though, it gave me and DH a strategy to deal with the wakings - felt like we were doing something positive and not so helpless.

But suddenly, when DS1 turned 9mo, he started waking up again. The problem is that instead of being comforted by PU/PD, DS is now furious. He struggles and pushes us away if we pick him up, but screams if he's left in his cot. WE hold his arms (he tends to hit himself in the face otherwise) and that used to help him drift back off to sleep, but now he kicks his legs instead or thrashes his head from side to side. Every time he seems to be going off to sleep, he wakes himself up again.

He's clearly not happy about being awake. Most of the time he's got his eyes closed as he cries and thrashes about. My mum reckons he's 'testing' us but I really don't buy into that 'bad baby' philosophy, never have done, even when I've been out of my mind with tiredness! smile

It can take 2.5 hours to get him back to sleep. It's completely inconsistent, ie. doesn't happen every night but when it does happen it's always at the same time, ie. midnight and/or 4am. I tend to wait a while before going in as he sometimes goes back to sleep but if he doesn't, the crying escalates into a scream so it's not an option for me to let him cry it out.

Has anyone else experienced this? It's very hard not knowing what to do to calm him. Why is PU/PD not working all of a sudden? DH keeps losing his temper with DS so it's left to me to get him back to sleep.

DS has started walking (well, tottering) - could this be related?

I keep hoping that just by being calm and consistent this will pass, but DH's behaviour isn't helping and my mum doesn't really help. Last night DH spent 30 mins with DS and then started hitting the pillows cos he was so frustrated. I wasn't very impressed to say the least - I know it's frustrating as nothing we do seems to help but I just don't think it's DS's fault.

I don't think he's teething, BTW. He has 8 teeth already and we know the drill on that one...

I just don't want to think my baby is 'bad' because I know he's not. All the problems we've had I've tried so hard not to think that way or to make it a battle of wills because even tho I'm tired I want to enjoy my son, and not let this ruin our relationship. And he's such a happy, smiley baby, I feel like it's worth it.

God, sorry, I'm rambling. I'm just after some advice and a 'hang on in there' from someone!!

nowwearefour Sun 24-Aug-08 09:21:25

It will just be a phase. HAng in there! It WILL pass. I have been through similar with my dd2. It is SOOOO hard. I feel for you. But it will pass.

MegBusset Sun 24-Aug-08 09:22:01

We never tried PU/PD but from your post it sounds like the picking up, arm holding etc is just winding him up more. We did cc at 9mo and it worked within three nights, made us realise that everything else we'd tried to make him sleep had actually been stimulating him and stopping him sleeping.

Of course your baby isn't 'bad', he's just normal, but perhaps letting him learn to fall asleep by himself would be a good idea? I know cc isn't for everyone but honestly, it did DS (and us) the world of good and really cracked his sleeping problems.

Sufi Sun 24-Aug-08 09:46:55

Thanks NWAF.

Not sure I want to do cc, Meg. He does know how to fall asleep - I put him into his cot awake at bedtime and sit with him (no intervention) until he falls asleep. It took us ages to get to that point and feel like if I did cc it would break down the trust that DS has in me that I'll be there for him as he falls asleep, if you see what I mean.

That's the frustrating thing. He knows how to fall asleep and he wants to be asleep but he just seems to have forgotten when he wakes up in the night.

MegBusset Sun 24-Aug-08 11:09:35

That's fair enough, Sufi. My experience with DS, though, was that if I was in the room when he fell asleep, then when he stirred in the night and realised I wasn't there he would wake and cry.

I hope you find something that works for you

EffiePerine Sun 24-Aug-08 11:13:41

It could well be related to walking. I'd give it a week or two and see if things improve and, if not, try something else. Babies do change a hell of a lot on that first year, so what worked like a dream at 6 mo may not work at 9.

DS went through this stage, but I didn'y try any form of sleep training until he was 15mo so not thebest person to advise . I just fed and cuddled him and tried to get as much sleep as I could myself! 2.5 hours being awake at night is a killer

EffiePerine Sun 24-Aug-08 11:15:09

I post this link a LOT but it helped me understand why DS was being sucha contrary bugger!

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