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is a 5 month old to young to use control crying?

(27 Posts)
simba1 Wed 17-Sep-08 21:24:45

Is a five month old baby being manipulative if at night he screams hysterically for about an hour before eventually falling asleep. We rock him and sing to him for an hour every night as soon as he starts crying and i am wondering if he is manipulating us. Is it worth control crying? We did try last night but he got so upset!!!!!

Oliveoil Wed 17-Sep-08 21:28:13

babies CANNOT be manipulative imo

and 5 months is too young to leave them to cry I think

is he overtired? does he nap in the day? bedtime routine?

dd2 was a demon child if she got overtired and therefore was too tired to sleep iyswim

my two got tired after being awake about 2-3 hours later. so if they were awake at 6am, I put them down awake at about 9ish for a nap

then did a bottle at midday (ish), then in cot for nap etc

just jig it about to suit your day to day running about

bring bed time forward etc

BecauseImWorthIt Wed 17-Sep-08 21:30:59

He isn't manipulating you - he can't possibly be doing that at this age. But you are training him, by rocking him to sleep. He does have to learn how to go to sleep on his own.

CC isn't for everyone, and there are lots of very anti folk on this forum.

I used it when DS1 was 4 1/2 months old, because he used to wake up every time his dummy fell out, but couldn't put it back in, so we had to wean him off the dummy.

I bought a fab book called "How to Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems" (sorry, don't know if it's still in print, or who the author was) and it outlined the way to go about it.

Essentially it was about leaving him for very short periods, and gradually building up the time he was left. I can't remember the specifics of it now, as this was 16 years ago!

But we started on Thursday and by Sunday he was sleeping through with no dummy.

The longest he was ever left to cry was 10 minutes.

glasgowgal Wed 17-Sep-08 21:32:19

Yes- far too young. He will think you are abandoning him. Why are you waiting for him to start crying before you rock him to sleep? Agree he may be over tired by this time. Try to get him used to a nice nighttime routine, bath, milk, etc and he may be a bit happier. Hope this helps.

RubySlippers Wed 17-Sep-08 21:34:11

as PPs have said a 5 month old cannot manipulate you

he is probably over tired and over stimulated

try putting him down ealier

Knakard Wed 17-Sep-08 21:35:47

Far too young, hes cry because he needs you. If a three year old toddles into your room at night and said muumy ive had a nasty dream and dont want to be alone can i have a cuddle would you march them straight back to bed with no cuddle? Only difference is small baby cant articulate the problem.

nappyaddict Wed 17-Sep-08 21:36:54

please read this

have you tried the baby whisperer ways? she uses the EASY and PU/PD method.

Knakard Wed 17-Sep-08 21:37:11

Sorry didnt mean to seem abrupt, i know how the tiredness can get. Just feel really stringly on this issue. Hope it gets etter for you

osborne Wed 17-Sep-08 21:46:59

my third is five months and have problems ttoo. am trying to get her to sleep at the same times every day by whatebver means, driving around, rocking etc. the habit is then formed and they feel tired at times you have established and is easier to adjust the way they fall asleep. or so the theory goes...

callmemitey Wed 17-Sep-08 21:48:05

I did it to some extent. DD was BFing to sleep but suddenly could not sleep and would cry for hours even in my arms. I decided she was over stimulated by me so we did CC. I was heartbroken to think I could resort to that. However she really did respond to it.

IIRC I did 2 minutes - go in and put my hand on her and said "shh sleepy time", then 5, 7 and 9. On the first night she did not make 9 mins as she was asleep. From there on in I used it whenever I needed to. If she was sick or teething I just went with the flow - an ill child can't sleep and I never did it to her. However now at 2 years she sometimes finds it hard to sleep so we do the same routine, she has milk and cuddles in her room then is put in her bed. Sometimes she cries out, and now even talks to us. However she is always asleep within the first 5 minutes.

Naps are a very different matter hmm

morocco Wed 17-Sep-08 23:14:17

about that age, all of mine have wanted a bit of space at night when tired. they get more cross if rocked etc. worth trying putting him down just before he gets cross (if he has a regular time) so he doesn't get over stimulated

definitely too early for cc

seeker Wed 17-Sep-08 23:22:31

No. He's 5 months old - he can't manipulate you. He's a baby - he wants to be with you. It won't go on forever - go with him.

mamazee Wed 17-Sep-08 23:23:37

no he cannot manipulate you.
5 months is way to young to do controlled crying IMHO.

pinata Thu 18-Sep-08 10:36:01

i don't think he's being manipulative at that age, but i would say leaving him to cry every now and then, if nothing else is wrong, is an option you should consider.

if you're rocking and singing for a whole hour and he's still screaming, maybe he just needs to be left alone for a bit. certainly my DD (who's a bit bigger at 9 months) now physically fights me off her if she's over tired and just wants to sleep, and has never been partial to shushing or patting - it just makes her cross

just make sure you have his bedtime set for when he naturally gets tired and of course that he's clean and fed and give it 5 or 10 minutes and see what happens. you might be pleasantly surprised...

TrinityRhino Thu 18-Sep-08 10:43:01

jesus chirst
You dont actually think he is manipulating you do you??
I mean come one

he has been outside you tummy for 5 months

not a long time at all to get used to the world
stop thinking he is out to get you and turn on your instincts
he wants to be with you becuase you are the thing in the world that makes him feel more secure and comfortable than anything else in the world
it does sound like he may be overtired
try putting him down earlier

and dont leave him to cry, its pointless and IMO mean

use other ways to find how he can become calm

and I am not speaking form the point of veiw of a mother whos children sleep

I have three girls who didn;t feel they could sleep throuhg the night or on their own till they were past two

the older two are now 8 and 3 and sleep in their own room, on their own all night

gecko is 19 months and begginning to show signs of feeling secure enough to gointo her own bed

an I knwo your tired
I;ve got that t shirt in spoons

gecko was born before dd2 was sleeping through
I have had three and a bit years of not getting more than 3 hours sleep in a stretch
and being woken up for the morning before 7am

pinata Thu 18-Sep-08 10:53:32

i don't think leaving a baby to cry is necessarily mean - if you've done what you can to calm them, they're tired and they cry even when they're picked up, it can be the best option. it depends on the baby, but like i said, my DD was never one for things like rocking, shushing etc.

and if it makes them go to sleep in a quarter of the time spent trying to calm them in other ways, it's the very opposite of pointless

i'm not advocating uncontrolled screaming for hours, but 5, 10 or even 20 minutes can be well worth it, IME

Overmydeadbody Thu 18-Sep-08 10:55:41

A baby cannot be manipulative. Poor thing.

IMO, a child is never old enough to use controlled crying.

witchandchips Thu 18-Sep-08 10:56:40

5 months is too early for cc imo but some babies do cry for 5 mins or so before going to sleep even if there is nothing wrong so leaving them for a little bit is okay. - This crying turns into talking/babling/singing when they get a bit older

Becky77 Thu 18-Sep-08 11:03:58

I agree with pinata... If they would cry for less time when you leave them to self settle surely that's the better option? I've recently started weaning my DD of her dummy and she'll cry for longer if I try to settle her than if I put her down. I'm not leaving her I sit beside her and watch incase she gets really worked up but I've found after 5 minutes max she settles herself... Surely that's the best thing for her?

But I agree it's completely impossible for a baby that age to be manipulative. I'd also say it sounds like she's overtired. We only ever get that shrill persistant crying if our LO is overtired. Is the room he's in completely dark? You want to remove all stimulation and then he should be able to settle himself better... Perhaps the rocking and singing is too stimulating too?

seeker Thu 18-Sep-08 12:11:14

I can't think that leaving a baby to cry alone for 20 minutes is EVER a good thing. EVER.

pudding25 Thu 18-Sep-08 12:22:06

Of course he's not manipulating you. He is a tiny baby. However, to echo others, he sounds like he is overtired.

At 5 mths old, he can only stay awake for around 2hrs at most at a time. Try and get him to nap 2 hrs after he last woke (look out for tired signs). If he won't nap in the cot, to begin with, you may need to take him out in the car/pram.

Have you got a good bedtime routine going? Bath, feed, bed (we also do a small feed before bath so DD is not too hungry) around 7pm.

All that rocking and shushing is probably too much stimulation plus they will soom become a prop to help him sleep.

Once you have a good nap/bedtime routine established, put him in to cot and let him try to settle himself. You could do a mild form of cc but what you could do, which is easier is make a plan to sit with him, hold his hand/stroke his hair for 20 mins, leave for 5 mins, go in for 10, leave for 10mins until he is asleep. First night my take a bit of sitting and going in and out and then it will get less and less until he settle himself.

But make sure you look out for his sleepy signs (yawning, getting grumpy, ear rubbing).

My dd hates being picked up when she is overtired. It drives her into a frenzy.

pinata Thu 18-Sep-08 17:25:28

it's sometimes the only way - not my preferred route, necessarily, but tired + knowing DD will get more distressed with me holding, rocking and generally bothering her, 20 mins of crying a bit (not extended screaming herself purple) is absolutely fine. and afterwards she goes to sleep for an hour or 2 or whatever.

it's just about knowing what's a distress cry and what's just "powering down" - in our case, it's cries with gaps in between that get longer and longer and then lovely silence

don't get me wrong, i much prefer her not to cry, and do my best to calm and settle her before puttng her down (bit of head massage very popular here), but if it doesn't do the trick, eventually i do have to try leaving her for a bit. it's just an additional option

callmemitey Thu 18-Sep-08 20:30:57

You have all said what I meant earlier. A stressed crying baby v 5 mins (or less) of her letting off steam was a real blessing to all of us.

I would not have been able to leave her screaming for half an hour or more - imo that would mean she needed something else. But if it is just a few minutes of self settling then I think that is different. Yes labelled CC but in practice a different thing. I never wanted to "break" DD of feeding when she needed it at night - she just needed to learn how to fall asleep alone.

nappyaddict Fri 19-Sep-08 10:02:52

It is true that some babies need to cry for a little bit before going to sleep but try soothing him by stroking him or holding his hand etc. imo that will make him settle a lot better than being left on his own to cry.

macaco Fri 19-Sep-08 12:01:14

what oliveoil said.

Not advocating CC myself here particularly but nappyaddict your link is written by a BF expert not a sleep expert.

OP I'd say try not to let baby get overtired. about 2 hours after waking soothe and put in cot for a nap. See if he cries less. Might help the hysterical crying. Cos if he's hysterical he's not going to be able to get to sleep.

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