Last night he woke around 3am. The night before it was 5.30am. It's been the same for the past few weeks - at some point during the night but not the same time each night. We hear him babble and whoop for ages, hoping he'll go back to sleep, before he gets bored and starts whingeing, then crying. So I go in, get him out of the cot, cuddle him for about half an hour until he's sleepy again, put him back in and more often than not he goes back.
I just find it weird that he's obviously got into a habit of waking and I think it is loneliness. I don't want to let him cry. In some ways it would be easier if he woke crying and in need of something.
Anyway, the only thing I've tried before was a tip from the 'No Cry Sleep Solution' for extending naps, which was to go in as soon as you hear a peep, and shhh and pat their back and sooth them back off before they properly wake up. I did this with DS about 2 months ago to extend his 45 minute naps to 1 1/2-2 hour ones and it worked in about a week. I might try the same - set up a bed in DS's room and try it for a few nights.
Don't really know what else to do! Does anyone have any other suggestions? Think DH might have exacerbated the habit by turning the hall light on when he goes to put the dummy in, could he have reinforced the waking habit? We can't go on like this...