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Sleep disturbed by separation anxiety - any tips?

(6 Posts)
MrsJamin Thu 02-Oct-08 22:49:11

9 MO DS has been v difficult to settle to sleep for the past few weeks, I'm sure it's separation anxiety but that doesn't really help to resolve it! He just doesn't want to go to sleep by himself and has sometimes taken up to 2 hours to go down for a nap. Has anyone got any tips? Have read the pick up put down method by the baby whisperer author- does this work?

ches Fri 03-Oct-08 02:34:55

Pick Up/Put Down works well for a baby who won't settle in his cot at all. One who is used to falling asleep on the breast, or being rocked to sleep, etc. You put them down and sooth them, but if they get upset you pick them up and sooth them, then put them back down. It can take a very long time initially, but the idea is that they don't get left to cry in bed and develop negative associations to it.

If Separation Anxiety is to blame then he should settle okay with you still in the room. Personally I don't think you'll have much luck with him going to sleep without you in the room until it is past, but that doesn't mean you can't get to the point of doing something else (e.g. reading a book) or sitting out in the hall.

MrsJamin Fri 03-Oct-08 07:38:56

thanks ches, that's really helpful! I too wondered whether it would work if he'd previously fallen asleep by himself ok. I will try staying in the room with a book!

NatLex Tue 07-Oct-08 07:31:10

I had the same problem, but only lasted about a week with me gradually trying to leave him in his room on his own. Gradually he would still cry when I left the room, but got less and less and not so hysterical as at the beginning. Be tough and do the same routine, but leave the room as soon as he'she is in bed. Even if they cry initially, they will eventually realise you are not going to give in. As long as they are not ill, it should be ok.

MrsJamin Tue 07-Oct-08 08:38:19

Actually, he's doing a lot better now, a bigger cry initially when I leave the room but it doesn't last for long. I just make sure he really knows that it's nap time, repeating "It's time to go to sleep" in a reassuring voice!

NatLex Tue 07-Oct-08 12:23:45

great, pleased for you Mrs Jamin. It does work with some perseverance, it is better to bear it for a while than end up with a prolong problem, which just gets him more and more used to it. It worked for me so far.

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