need sleeping routine tips please

Joanne - posted on 04/06/2010 ( 21 moms have responded )

10

23

0

Hi,
my son is just over 16 months old and can not settle himself and needs a cuddle to sleep (my own fault i will admit). my partner works away a lot and i used to just end up putting him in our bed in order to get some sleep myself.
we have recently started a new routine of dinner, bath, bed and strictly no getting into mummy's bed but i am having some difficulty, my partner is away and last night i had to get up to my son 6 times with the longest occassion being 1.5 hours, with my partner away for at least 2 weeks and no relatives close by to call upon i cannot see myself lasting long.
we have previously tried controlled crying but unfortunately instead of 'getting over it' he just gets hysterical.
all suggestions would be appreciated.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Tawnya - posted on 04/14/2010

14

16

1

There is a wonderful page on facebook called "attachment parenting" and it is wonderful. It would be a great support for you in following your instincts with co-sleeping and mothering your baby. Remember your baby is a baby, it is unrealistic to expect him to be able to sooth himself when many adults need help soothing themselves. Who doesn't need cuddling when their frightened or upset? I would also suggest contacting your local La Leche League for some additional support since your husband works away from home. You can find a local group at www.llli.org Good luck!

Amy - posted on 04/11/2010

1

0

0

That sounds like my daughter. She just recently started soothing herself to sleep. What I did was do the bedtime routine (brush teeth, turn music on, read a story for the length of two songs, and then I hold her for one song in my bed, then I put her in a pack and play next to my bed and soothed her by holding her hand (or whatever worked that night) until she was asleep. When she woke up in the middle of the night I would talk softly to her, lay her down and tell her it was time for sleep. If she was hysterical and refused to lay down, I would sit on the end of my bed or next to the pack and play and hug her til she calmed down- but I would not pick her up. This took about a week and she was sleeping through the night. Once she did that, I switched the routine to her room and she transitioned really well. Now I do my routine, lay her in bed with her baby and tell her good-night. Sometimes she fusses, but never cries. When she does cry, I go to her and hug her over the crib til she calms down. Then I lay her down and sit next to the crib and hold her hand til she's almost asleep. I rarely have to do that now. I tried letting her cry it out and it did not work for her. Hope you find what works for you and that this helps a little. It's definately not what the books or doctors will tell you to do but it worked for us.

Megan - posted on 04/09/2010

190

6

17

Putting your baby to bed with a bottle can cause severe teeth rot. I have seen this personally and it is not pretty. Babies who eat laying flat on their back are also prone to ear infections. If baby were to bite through the nipple on the bottle it could cause her to choke to death from the rush of milk in her face. Just some things to think about.

I nurse my babies to sleep and co-sleep, works great, my older boys go to sleep by themselves in their own beds without any problems. Everything is a season and seasons change. They are little for such a short time and won't sleep with you forever.

Katrina - posted on 04/08/2010

34

33

0

I feel your pain but please don't beat yourself up on giving cuddles & co-sleeping, every child is different. My daughter, who is now 16mths, has only just managed to settle on her own. I used to let her have her night bottle whilst lying on me & when she was asleep pop her into her crib. I did get into the habit of co-sleeping as I was so damn tired & yes, felt like a failure! The only advice I can give is the methods I undertook with my daughter (tried controlled crying on 3 separate occasions since her birth & each time it just seemd to make her more clingy!)



Once I had regained my sanity from getting some decent sleep via co-sleeping, I would let her in bed when she woke & once she was asleep, pop her back in her crib. Just kept doing this & over time the instances she came into bed got less & less. I decided to make her bedtime later (7/7.30pm as opposed 6pm) I organised & kept to a strict routine. Bath at 5.30, dinner, quiet time & a bottle if she wanted it then come 7/7.30.......read the signs to guage how tired.....say "Right, time for bed, let's go brush your teeth" night kisses for daddy then upstairs,brush teeth "Off to bed" kiss & a cuddle then lay her down awake with cuddle blanket. (This next advice was given to me by my local babyshop owner who's had 3 girls & knows her stuf!!) Each time she sits up lie her back down whilst saying night night, sleepy sleepy......or similar. DON'T engage in conversation & keep saying the same phrase so they associate it with going to sleep. Persevere!! The first night it took over hr & half to get her to settle as different routine, 2nd night 'bout an hr. Keep your phrases the same, don't fuss, engage in conversation, pick them up just gently but firmly lie back down, then sit back & wait. It took about a week/week & a half for her to realise mummy wasn't going to pick her up but mummy was there if she needed me......no hysterical crying or feeling abandoned. I am pleased to report it now oly takes about 10/15mins for her to settle & nod off & more often than not when she wakes in the night,providing I get there quick she soon settles. The trick with my daughter is to ensure she feels safe so I just hang back until I'm sure she's good & sleepy.



I've found as long as she has a fullish belly a dry nappy & is tired enough to sleep but not overtired then we do ok. Mummy knows best to just read the signs....rubbing eyes, whinging etc. Siobhan also has an nap 'bout 10am sometimes for an hr sometimes only half hr. I also try to get out & about in the fresh air each day & let her toddle about as this seems to help her sleep.



Sorry if this is really long winded & sounds a bit 'suck eggs grandma' just letting you know what worked for us as we don't agree with controlled crying. Hope it works, persevere, the first few nights will be BORING!!! & it will seem like they will never settle but they will intime. Good luck sweetie xx

Clara - posted on 04/07/2010

283

10

22

I can imagine what your going through, but we love co-sleeping, there are endless benifites, they grow up so quickly ...

But if this is not working for your family, you can look for advice on: naomialdort.com.

Good luck, and remember to trust your instincts, controlled crying is such a sad thing for me.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

21 Comments

View replies by

Clara - posted on 05/13/2010

283

10

22

Great news Tawya Guldi !!!!!!!!!!!

Our routine is so simple, I switch the lights off, watch my favorite soap, put music on in the background, wait for her to come cuddle. I love the fact that she needs me to fall asleep, and every night by 7 she is fast asleep.

We look at her beautiful, peaceful face and embrace these moments, soon they will only be memories.

Why do we complicate sleeping so much ?

Lisa - posted on 05/12/2010

3

31

0

I am having the same problem Joanne, my doctors have said the same advice as Kris below has said. My daughter has ONLY ever slept in bed with me, even in the hospital after she was born, but on the news the other day, I heard that drop-side cribs have been recalled because of the child deaths that are happening. So, sleeping beside your/my child is not such a bad idea! I am also fed up with the fact that my baby can not go to sleep tho, without me being beside her or her waking up two to three times a night for her "ba-ba",,, I am just praying that she gets bigger and that I can make it through these next few months. I'm sure they won't be like this forever,,I mean they will be 16 someday,,and I'm sure they won't be sleeping beside us and wanting a bottle then!!!LOL

Lindsay - posted on 04/20/2010

1

2

0

My son ha always slept in his own bed; however, i had to rock him to sleep until he was 12 months old in order for him to go to sleep. I am a full time student and my husband worked crazy hours, so the only opportunity I had for studying was after my son was rocked to sleep (which towards the end could take up to an hour or more). It was very hard for me to do, but fortunately my son got accustomed to it very quickly. I started giving him a set bedtime (usually around 7:30) and when it was time for bed, I would tell him goodnight and I would get him in the morning when he wakes up. The first time he cried for, what seemed like, forever. The more he cried, the more I cried! But after only about a week of having the same routine every night, when I would put him into his crib & tell him goodnight, he would just wave and blow me a kiss!! It was been wonderful! You just have to be able to bear to crying for a little bit. It sounds bad to say "bear" the crying, but my son has been so much happier when he wakes up, and he wakes up well rested too!

Hope it helps!

Melanie - posted on 04/15/2010

102

57

5

My 16 Month old has been in the same routine since she was old enough to eat solids 6pm Dinner 6.30pm Play Dance Sing what ever we want to do 7.00pm Bath 7.30pm Bottle and by 8.00pm shes asleep and she will normally go through until 6.00am the next morning we don't allow her to sleep with us and it works perfectly fine with her shes little miss independant anyway I think be strong with the routine your trying to put him it may take a while but he will come around you will find what works best for you

Heather - posted on 04/14/2010

13

27

1

Baby Whisperer! I saw at least one other mom suggested that. Also as Kris said (1st post) - try sleeping in the babies room on the floor & work your way out for a few nights.... the BW books talk about that as a technique. There are several books - one detailed the process for a newborn & another went into detail of how to change habits in older kids.

Toni - posted on 04/14/2010

27

14

2

My son was like this, we both slept better when we could sleep together, but i was told it would cause alot of problems, so I stopped. we attempted it so many times, bcuz it broke my heart hearing him scream like that. we put our little tv in his room & played a movie for him before bed, he fell asleep before it was over so we would turn it off. Then when he knew it was bed time he would go right to sleep,so we stopped playing the movies & just gave him a night light & a couple crackers on his night stand & he goes right to sleep. I stopped doing that though, it was just to help him realize he is tired.. My mother in law who is a head nurse, told me about the cracker trick. It distracts them & they realize they r tired & go to sleep. hope you find something that works. I know how hard it is. I have insomnia, so when he was waking up all night i never slept more than 1 1/2 hours a day, you can imagine how fun i was. serious headaches every day. good luck!!

Micah - posted on 04/14/2010

8

11

0

I say cuddle him. They're only small for so long and it's not like he'll need you to cuddle him to sleep when he's off at college. Right? I nurse my 16 month old to sleep and cosleep with him. He's a great sleeper. :)

Tine - posted on 04/13/2010

279

9

2

Hi! Your son sounds normal for his age. Read 'Nighttime parenting' By Dr Sears, or 'the No Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers' - you are actually fulfilling his needs best by cuddling himto sleep, and co-sleeping (just do it safely if you do).
I still co-sleep with my daughter,and only in the last 3 weeks has she been able to nap alone for 1.5 - 2 hours duringthe day - only because I've persevered with gentle ways of getting her to sleep so she now feels secure that I'm there for her and she is safe (inthe sling at daytime,nursing her to sleep lying down at night).
You were right NOT to go with 'cry it out' - it really does do emotional (and physical) harm to babies and toddlers, and does not work how it's meant to - there's lots and lots of info on how appalling this practice is for babies. Really, trust yourself, you clearly instinctively know what you're doing,you just need support and reassurance. This phase will pass!! I too have NO family or other support, my partner goes away for work, but I have found other people who parent like I do (breastfeeding groups like ABA in AUst or La Leche League elsewhere can be wonderful even if you're not breastfeeding,for support!) and that has saved my sanity!
The only other thing that has helped my 17month old daughter settle is getting her up earlier, and looking out for sleep signs at nap time. The books above are really helpful, you could get them from a library or over the net.
Trust that you're a great mum with great instincts!!!
:-) :-) Tine

Carmen - posted on 04/11/2010

1

6

0

We had quite similar problems. We had to carry him until he felt asleep. During night he woke up 2-5 times und up to 3 hours - all the time we had to carr him. And finally I contacted the sleepfairy - she is just an angel - it took us less than a week and Nick sleeps soundly through the night....
Please see the following link - and do not hesitate -she can help you.... http://babysleepfairy.com/

Terri - posted on 04/09/2010

14

8

1

My son just recently got over the same problem. He was a great sleeper ever since he was about 4 months old and then around 15 months he started screaming every time we put him down for his nap or at night. We took him to the doctor to make sure that he wasn't sick or had an ear infection and the doctor said he was fine. He suggested that it was a developmental phase that many toddlers go through and to handle it in a way we were comfortable with.
I do not co-sleep with him and I am a firm believer in the cry it out method. I let him cry until he fell asleep. I also tried reassuring him after 5 or 10 minutes but it just made him even more mad, so I stopped that. The trick for my son was not to pick him up and to limit the time in his room to 30 seconds. Let him know that it is time to sleep and let him cry it out. It took about a week and a half of consistency and now he sleeps sound again. The key is consistency for sure!

Julie - posted on 04/09/2010

1

3

0

Hi,

We have recently been having problems with our 16 month old, and we found out if we put her to bed with a bottle of warm milk (to feed herself) she seems to settle.

Holly - posted on 04/08/2010

14

45

1

Hiya, just wanted to share what worked for us with our little boy (now 16 months). He was not a good sleeper from the start and the first six months were pretty difficut, but I'd say by 9 months he had it figured out. (It will take time). I read the Baby Whisperer book when I was pregnant and after I had Dylan and really liked a lot of her advice. The routine we ended up doing was:

Bring to bedroom, low lights, lay on changing mat & give bottle
Change nappy and put into pjs and sleeping bag
Give him his dummy (recently he's wanted one in his mouth and one in his hand!)
Rock in rocking chair whilst singing bedtime song (same song every night, only at bedtime though, not at naptime)
When song finished, give kiss and cuddle and lay down in bed.
Turn around and walk out of room and close door.
(These days he falls asleep here and sometimes doesn't wake up until 7:30 the next morning!)
In the early days, if he cried instantly we would wait three minutes (doing something else rather than listen to him cry) and go back in, lay him down, give him his dummy and walk out. We'd then wait three more, then go in and do the exact thing, not saying anything to him or looking at him in his eyes. Three more minutes, etc. If the intensity of his cry started to wane we would wait longer to go in. If he was proper hysterical I would pick him up and hold him until he stopped crying then put him back down and leave.

Basically we could not handle the cry it out method. We didn't want him feeling like we'd abandoned him. This way, we felt like we were teaching him that we weren't leaving him, it was just time to go to sleep and we meant business. We wanted him to know we'd still come to him when he cried, but we wouldn't be doing anything but checking to make sure he was ok, then leaving him to sleep.

Luckily (maybe) he never would sleep in bed with us. We tried to bring him to bed with us once or twice and it got him so excitable that the opposite occured and he woke right up. So we never had the problem of him wanting to sleep in our bed, but we did have many hours worth of toing and froing from the sofa to his room and back. It took a lot of determination and patience. We did this for his naptime and bedtime. But I can tell you it worked for us. He now goes to sleep as soon as I lay him down for his nap (at about 12:30-3) and bedtime (at about 7-7).He understands the cues and knows I'm not leaving him. Worked for us...good luck to you!

Moni - posted on 04/08/2010

92

16

18

Get a routine that works for you and stick with it. It is incredibly difficult to do this on your own (my hubby travels a lot as well), but the payoff in the end is worth it. How well does your kiddo nap? Any difference in your routine for that vs at night? We've found that putting some board books, as well as her snuggles (stuffed kangaroo), in her crib with her and leaving a source of light on makes her quite a happy little camper. We also have a humidifier in her room, we started that when she was sick, but it's working as great white noise for her to fall asleep to.
Is your kiddo teething? Mine is getting slammed with teeth at the moment and I know that's making for some uncomfortable nights as well. It is hard to hear them cry, but it will only take a few days for them to start putting themselves to sleep.

Jessica - posted on 04/08/2010

23

9

1

i had the same problem my son was sleping with us not in his cot and waking six times or more a night i was cranky all the time and just down right tired... what i did was watch my son for a day trying to see what he does when i asked him to get toys from his room or lets go to hunters room everytime he went to my room so i put all his toys except a few into his room and kept telling him we are putting all of hunters toys in hunter room, and i kept at telling him - hunter go get your car or some toy from your room, he picked it up pretty much straight away 2 days i think it took,

then i watched him in the cot and as soon as i put him in he screamed so i pulled the side of the cot off and lowered it so he could get in and out, and he started to like it but it took about 2 weeks for him to go to sleep by himself i had to do steps with that also 1-first patted him, 2-sang but didnt touch 3-didnt look at him but sat on the edge of the bed or carpet 4- gave milk kissed him and walked out he cried a little but it wasn't those screams from before, all that took about 2 weeks and we just kept at it, now he doesn't even cry... its ssooo good

but all babies are different and my friends child she bought a night light that has music and shines light onto the ceiling and that did it for him. routine is great and sticking to it is best whatever you decide just keep at it, we couldn't control cry either thats just too distressing...

Kris - posted on 04/06/2010

24

11

11

Hi Joanne. I understand how hard it is to be getting up so often in the night, escpecially when you are doing all the getting up. I would say, stick with it, it usually only takes a short time (week, maybe less) if you can stick with it. Otherwise everytime you have to start all over again. You could try laying beside his bed when putting him down and then gradually moving farther and farther away until you are out the door. You could also try giving him a special toy or object to sleep with. I have heard that a slept in t-shirt works well, because it will have your scent. Hope that helps! Good luck and stay strong!

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms