Baby has schedule of sullen teenager

Bandy - posted on 12/29/2013 ( 11 moms have responded )

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My 3.5 month old can sleep 8, sometimes 10 hour stretches but only between the hours of 2 AM to 2 PM. In the evenings she gets fired up with happy, bubbly energy peaking at about 10 PM no matter what kind of day she's had (full of naps, no naps, we kept her up, we let her sleep, etc.). The concept of "bedtime" is completely wasted and frustrates all of us, especially when I tried Dr. Weissbluth's advice and put her to bed super-early for about a week (Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child - a terribly written book, incidentally), she literally laughed at us. I don't see Cry it Out working because she's genuinely awake and wants to socialize, but we'd like our evenings as husband and wife back. Is this doomed to continue?

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Bandy - posted on 01/02/2014

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update: I pushed her bedtime back to 9:00 and focused on keeping her up between 4-9. she still wakes up about an hour later and wants to party from 10-1 AM. I'm starting to think this has more to do with nutrition than sleep so I'm going to pack in as much of her calories in the day as possible, though it will take a few days of pumping to get it right. I feel bad about continuing to wake her at 8 when she's gone to sleep at 1:30, but hopefully we'll get this right soon. We also have not been disciplined about wake up and sleep times as a result of the holidays so it's a reflection of us.

Holly - posted on 12/31/2013

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Something I noticed with my first child, Sh has kinda been making her own hours. At first she slept all the time. Then she didnt want to sleep at night at all and she slept all day long. I fought it and became very frustrated with the whole thing, she just would not sleep when I wanted her too. Then all of the sudden she switched it up again. She now goes to bed at nine every night, sleeps through till about seven. During the day she takes a two hour nap at one . This is everyday like clock work. I'm enjoying this for as long as it keeps up. She has chosen this routine herself, all I do is encourage it and help her maintain it. Most likely your baby will change. If everything else with him/her is normal I would just try to hang in there. I hope this was helpful. This of course is just my idea. You will do the best thing in the end.

Jodi - posted on 12/29/2013

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Not initially. What it comes down to is the number of hours a baby sleeps in a full 24 hour period. At 3 months, a total of 15 hours (give or take an hour) is recommended per day. So if your baby is sleeping from 2am until 2pm, then that is 12 hours right there. Then if she is napping as well, she is already getting her 15 hours sleep - you are never going to get her to sleep again until 2am for the night. You need to reset her schedule. So if that means consistently waking her early and cutting some naps to get the nighttime sleep in place, then that's what you have to do. Once the nighttime sleep is working, THEN you give back the extra daytime nap if necessary.

Somewhere between 3 and 6 months, they cut their 3rd nap anyway as they start to need less sleep.

Bandy - posted on 12/29/2013

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You're right about that! As I sit here at 2:30 AM while she's in the swing, wide awake...

I'll try keeping her awake from 4:00 PM - 9:00 PM and see how that works. I guess I always read/heard/thought that 9/10 PM is way too late a bedtime for a baby, no?

Thanks!

Jodi - posted on 12/29/2013

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Oh, I realise they wouldn't be on purpose. You may just need to be super vigilant for a little bit and wake her quickly if she dozes.

I'm not suggesting keep her awake until midnight, maybe more like 9 or 10pm, and cut out that last nap. It may make her more likely to go down earlier for her night sleep.

It sounds like anything is worth a try :)

Bandy - posted on 12/29/2013

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sorry - I should have been clearer- I'm not doing the catnaps on purpose, they are what happens when I try to impose an 8:00 PM bedtime (and it would happen if I tried for a 5:30 PM bedtime too, Weissbluth readers). Are you suggesting I keep her awake until midnight? And then continue to wake her at 8:00 AM?

Jodi - posted on 12/29/2013

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Stop the catnaps and try to stop Nap #3, no matter how much she fusses. Then try to keep her awake for a bit of the evening. See if that will help.

Bandy - posted on 12/29/2013

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Nap #1: 9:00ish - 11:00AM (I wake her again to eat)
Nap #2: 12:30ish - 2:00PM (again, I wake her)
Nap #3: 4:30 PM - 5:00PM (shortest nap)
Catnaps (about 20 min): 8:30 PM, 11:00 PM, 12:30 AM
Down to sleep about 1:30/2:30 AM

Bandy - posted on 12/29/2013

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I'm trying a new schedule where I wake her at 8 every morning and don't let daytime naps exceed 3 hours. its been 3 days and her night owl tendency has been more pronounced. do you think I should keep at it?

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