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Sleep Fighter/High Needs - Oh Baby! (birth to age one)

Old May 22nd, 2015, 10:30 PM   #1
kteacherga
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Sleep Fighter/High Needs

I really don't know what to do... I can't lay my 6 week old down awake. She freaks out. Screams until she can't breathe. She gets sleepy and fussy every night around 6:30. I can pretty much hold her off til 7:00 but at that point I can't put her down. I tried two nights now to go ahead and do her bedtime at that time. Thankfully, my almost 4 year old was super good and quiet. But both nights as soon as I laid her down her eyes popped open and she wasn't going back to sleep. Tonight I tried a small version of cry it out even though I know she's too young. I had promised DD 1 I would play with her. I just couldn't let her down two nights in a row. So I let DD2 cry for a few minutes at a time while we played a game then went in and calmed her down. I had to do this several times until she finally fell asleep on me when I went in there to calm her down. This gave me enough time to bathe DD1 and get through one story before she was awake and crying again. And now her bedtime routine is all messed up. Up until now I've had to swaddle her and put her in the swing with a sound machine to get through DD1's bedtime routine and that usually only lasts a short time before she's screaming again. I don't know what to do. She's getting sleepy at such a terrible time of day and I can't just lay her down to sleep! On top of that, I've been trying to get back to doing Zumba but my class is at that time when she's fussy like that and both girls are being needy and I feel guilty leaving two times a week and making my mother in law deal with them without a good plan in place. Help!!


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Old May 23rd, 2015, 02:08 AM   #2
RabbitMama85

 
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She's right at that age for a growth spurt...so cluster feeding, cat naps, and general fussiness is pretty normal. I don't know if you remember, but my dd1 was/is a terrible sleeper. Using a baby carrier saved my sanity, for most things. It's not possible to force a baby to sleep before they are ready...you can Swaddle, shush, and all that, but if it doesn't work, they just aren't going to do it. Maybe if she could take a short nap in a carrier...she would be up a little later, but happier with the little bit of extra sleep/extra mommy snuggles. I don't know about you, but the sound of a crying baby drives me batty, I couldn't possibly give my oldest my fullest attention while worrying about my youngest crying. In the early days, dd1 and I did almost everything with baby sleeping on me. And for the longest time, dd2 did take a late 1 hour nap just before bed. So around 6pm she would sleep until 7, bedtime at 8:30-9ish. Maybe that's what she is asking for.

And another thing, if it seems to continue on, seeing a sleep expert can help out so much to understand your baby's needs (which are obviously different than dd1). For me, insurance covered most of a few visits (all I needed was about 3-4) with a referral from my pedi. I think I paid around $30-50ish total for all the visits.


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Old May 23rd, 2015, 07:24 AM   #3
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So sorry you are going through this. It can be so tough! Our baby is now 9 months old but I struggled with the same thing for many months. My little one was very difficult to soothe/comfort at all. And she fights sleep like no other. I found being her parent so hard & she was my 3rd!

And I definitely can't give my attention to Sam & Alex when baby is crying. My BP goes through the roof. I know it doesn't help much now but know things will get better. Hang in there.


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Old May 23rd, 2015, 09:26 AM   #4
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That's pretty normal for a 6 week old. My suggestion would be to follow her cues and stop trying to schedule her. Eventually she will get on a schedule but 6 weeks is just too young, biologically, and fighting her to make her follow your routine just won't don't anything but send her the negative message that her needs can't be met and make you frustrated.

I can also tell you from personal experience that when babies are overtired they will actually have more of an issue with going to sleep and sleeping restfully.


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Old May 23rd, 2015, 06:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by September View Post
That's pretty normal for a 6 week old. My suggestion would be to follow her cues and stop trying to schedule her. Eventually she will get on a schedule but 6 weeks is just too young, biologically, and fighting her to make her follow your routine just won't don't anything but send her the negative message that her needs can't be met and make you frustrated.

I can also tell you from personal experience that when babies are overtired they will actually have more of an issue with going to sleep and sleeping restfully.
All of this. I couldn't set dd down until she was 12 weeks without hysterics...at all...ever. She was continuously held for 3 months. It was a major trial by fire at first but eventually I just followed her cues and now at 4.5, we're starting to be able to set her down with a play mat, in the pack and play for solo naps, etc. I second the recommendation to consider babywearing, also, so that LO can sleep, look around quietly, interact with you, whatever she needs, and you can have your arms free and mobility. You're in the trenches, mama. 6 weeks is a rough age for a lot of people, myself included.


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Old May 23rd, 2015, 06:36 PM   #6
kteacherga
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RabbitMama85 View Post
She's right at that age for a growth spurt...so cluster feeding, cat naps, and general fussiness is pretty normal. I don't know if you remember, but my dd1 was/is a terrible sleeper. Using a baby carrier saved my sanity, for most things. It's not possible to force a baby to sleep before they are ready...you can Swaddle, shush, and all that, but if it doesn't work, they just aren't going to do it. Maybe if she could take a short nap in a carrier...she would be up a little later, but happier with the little bit of extra sleep/extra mommy snuggles. I don't know about you, but the sound of a crying baby drives me batty, I couldn't possibly give my oldest my fullest attention while worrying about my youngest crying. In the early days, dd1 and I did almost everything with baby sleeping on me. And for the longest time, dd2 did take a late 1 hour nap just before bed. So around 6pm she would sleep until 7, bedtime at 8:30-9ish. Maybe that's what she is asking for. And another thing, if it seems to continue on, seeing a sleep expert can help out so much to understand your baby's needs (which are obviously different than dd1). For me, insurance covered most of a few visits (all I needed was about 3-4) with a referral from my pedi. I think I paid around $30-50ish total for all the visits.
Thank you for your advice! She does ok in the Moby most of the time. I guess I need to start making wearing her a part of our nightly routine since I can't do all of the tricks that normally put her to slept when she gets tired and play with DD1 as well.

I didn't realize insurance pays for sleep experts. That's interesting! I'll definitely look into it if I get desperate!


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Old May 23rd, 2015, 06:42 PM   #7
kteacherga
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Originally Posted by September View Post
That's pretty normal for a 6 week old. My suggestion would be to follow her cues and stop trying to schedule her. Eventually she will get on a schedule but 6 weeks is just too young, biologically, and fighting her to make her follow your routine just won't don't anything but send her the negative message that her needs can't be met and make you frustrated. I can also tell you from personal experience that when babies are overtired they will actually have more of an issue with going to sleep and sleeping restfully.
I am definitely following her cues. I've been studying up on the language of babies and I know the difference between her sleepy cry and hungry cry. I do paci and pat her and swaddle her for nap as soon as she shows sleepy cues. I've experienced her when she's overtired on days that she just can't sleep for whatever reason. It's not pretty! So I definitely try to catch her before she gets to that. I wasn't trying to force her into a schedule. I just thought that since she was getting sleepy at that time in the evening I would try making it her bedtime instead of a late nap. The reason being is that it's nearly impossible to get her down for a nap with DD1 needing my attention at the same time.
I think wearing her might be the solution for now until we get through this stage. We'll see!


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Old May 24th, 2015, 11:40 PM   #8
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Swaddling and setting down in the rock n play with the vibrate setting on was a savior for us around that age, even if you just turn it off once the baby is asleep. The "witching hour" is intense, especially when they're so little! You'll figure out what works for you. Then, as soon as you do, the LO will change it up on you. Enjoy the ride!


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