My baby girl is 6 weeks old and needs to be held ALL the time!

[deleted account] ( 41 moms have responded )

I'm a first time mother at the age of 35 of a beautiful baby girl. She is 6 weeks old and, well let's just say, SPOILED!!! We tried for many years to get pregnant, and just when I gave up hope, it happened. Even at the hospital she needed to be held. When we arrived home my parents came down from Michigan to visit. As well intentioned as the visit was, we were not able to set up any kind of routine for bed time. Sometimes she will sleep in the guest bed with me, but most of the time I find myself in the recliner with her. If I let her "cry it out", she screams so hard and loud that she actually gets sick. Her temperature goes up and she has massive amounts of spit-up. Anyone have any suggestions???? Thanks in advance! Oh, and I looked into snuggle nests. From what I understand, babies grow out of them by 8 weeks. Being that is just 2 weeks away, I don't think that will be helpful.

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Kristin - posted on 03/07/2010

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First, not possble for her to be spoiled at this age. Second, if you don't want to let her "cry it out" don't, it's too hard on everyone. She's gone from literally being held ALL the time to now being on the outside in a very big, kind of lonely world. She misses you. Colic is also a possibility. Mine never really had this, so no help there.

My husband and I really liked the "What to Expect the First Year" book. We have the AAP "Caring for Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to 5 Years" book, also helpful. They let us know what to expect as they were growing an developing. Lots of suggestions for a lot of the questions and challenges that popped up.

I guess how you handle this depends on what you need to have happen. If you want her to sleep in her own bed, have you considered some of the cosleeper bassinets? They are kind of like a larger bassinet that attaches to your bed, but the baby isn't IN your bed. She would be right there so you can rub her back or tummy and still smell you. My first would not sleep unless in contact with either myself or my husband, in the hospital and at home . He just wouldn't do it. I would sleep propped up on pillows with him on my chest until that got to hard for me to breathe and then he was next to me. After about 8-9 weeks he didn't mind being in his swing if he was bolstered, and that kind of freed me to do other stuff. Since I was tired too, I really didn't mind napping with him. I also used our carrier a lot with him, to free up my hands. If you and your husband are okay with it, then maybe this is what you need to do. She will leave your bed/room eventually. And you will get really creative for the grown up stuff you want to do.

The only schedule she really needs right now is to know that night is for sleeping and day is for being awake. She is still going to sleep through most of it, but she should be more alert during the day. Absolutely start a night/bed routine, she will start to make the connection this pattern means it's time for bed. She's going to wake up for feedings at night, do what you need to, but keep it boring and dim. During the day, that's when you interact and talk her for walking naps and all that stuff. As she gets bigger and more alert, you an add to her routine and schedule.

Keep your sense of humor, get some rest, let the unimportant stuff go, and take each day as it comes. Enjoy your miracle and don't sweat the rest.

Sheri - posted on 01/26/2009

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Can I add just one more thing? Don't make yourself crazy... even though new research shows it's healthier to pick up your baby when they want you to (including at night) it doesn't mean you're going to cause her any irrepairable harm by letting her cry every once in a while, for minutes at a time. You will need to make dinner (over a hot stove), you will need to take a shower, you will even need time alone and your baby may disagree with your timing. It happens... and if it's not The Norm, go ahead and give yourself 5 or 10 minutes in another room (with earplugs and a book, if necessary). You will most likely be upset with yourself anyway, but I just wanted to encourage you NOT to feel like a terrible mom if EVER you let your daughter cry for few minutes every once in a while. nowhatimean?

[deleted account]

Newborns DO want to be held all the time. Both mine did. And I DID hold them all the time. I slept with them too. Babies are very needy. You can't "spoil" a newborn, they NEED you.They need that constant touch & affection, they're used to being with you 24/7 when they were in the womb.
I'd say hold them as much as they want/need. They're only tiny once, enjoy it.

Jodi - posted on 03/07/2010

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i got 3 kids ive let them cry it out and it worked with everyone.the baby has 2 get used 2 your roution, try have having music or radio so she gets used to noise around her do u wrap her up if not do so, if she dosn't like her arms wrapped up dont wrap them it will make her feel like she is still in the womb it might settle her.good luck with it

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Karen - posted on 03/07/2010

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Hi everyone great to hear all your good new. Does anyone out there use the Fisher Price Flutterby Swing Chair, is it safe to use?

User - posted on 01/27/2009

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normal, normal!  my daughter was just like this.  she is a junior in h.s. now.  very independent, top of her class grade-wise, has a part-time job.  they all turn out fine!  sometimes i think the more demanding a baby is, the more successful they are as adults!  lol

Paige - posted on 01/27/2009

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I am so happy you finally got the amazing chance to a beautiful baby girl. They are the best gift. My advice is to talk to her pediatrician. Is she formula or bottle fed? My daughter nursed for the first few months then we slowly weined her to formula. The first formula we tried made her stomach upset so she cried all the time except when being help b/c that comforted her. I know it tiring holding her all the time but at this age it simply just what makes them feel secure. When she starts to get a few months older you will be able to help her be independent! Good luck, and really talk to her pediatrician, mine really looked out for me and my husband making sure we were feeling okay, they should give you tips to help with this problem that does not include just letting them cry it out.

Joanna - posted on 01/27/2009

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I am a mom of four, I've been doing this along time. I am 33 and my oldest is 16. you have to figure out why she is crying. It sounds like it might be gas or colic. My youngest is 8 months and we had a hard time trying to get him to burp to relieve the gas pain. I switched his formula to the one that helps gassy babies.  she could also be teething.dont let doctors tell you its not possible because it is. my little guy started before he turned 2 months. now at 8mths he has 8 teeth with more coming in. babies do cry for a reason but you can't constantly hold her, or you will regret it for along time. you won't be able to get anything done. you also want to be able to enjoy her since she is your first.. the experience should be happy. good luck

Sarah - posted on 01/27/2009

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First off congratulations on your baby girl.

I'm not a professional but I really don't think the cry it out is appropriate for a baby that young they simply don't have the ability to self soothe at that age.

Swaddling can work wonders but my little one hated it, it actually made him worse when i swaddled him so i would cradle him very close but with his arms kept down as if he were swaddled and sit on the edge of a seat and rock back and forth with him this sometimes worked.
I also had a fisher price flutterby dreams swing for my little one and when he was desperate for attention or cuddles in the night i would go down to the lounge put him in that with blankets tucked in tight around him and pull it right up next to the sofa so I could lie there next to him hold his hand and sing and the swing would rock him for me!! That way he was rocked off to sleep and I could have a sleep on the sofa too.

You really don't have to worry about them coming to expect it at that age their routines and needs change so frequently that they forget and move onto something else in the blink of an eye, and Jennifer is right in what she says it really is over all too quickly so enjoy your little one while you can because before you know it you will have a fiercely independent little Girl on your hands and cuddles will seem to be a distant memory!

Hope this helps x

Whitney - posted on 01/26/2009

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If you need your hands but she still wants to be held I can't say enough about MOBY WRAPS!!!



www.mobywraps.com



 



I'm in a wheelchair and didn't discover this little beauty until my seond child.  I _need_ my hands because I use a manual chair.  For one, they can't grow out of it unless you say they do, and for two, its so comfortable you barely notice the baby is strapped to you.  Its because the baby is positioned at a place more condusive to your center of balance and they are there securely.  I urge you to check it out.



As for night time, all our kids were co-sleepers until about 3 months old.  Either they were with us in bed in a incliner or they were in a bassinette next to our bed.  I think having mommy and daddy's immediate prescense was comforting to them and we didn't have stub toes or run into things in the middle of the night trying to get to their room.  Plus, I was a scardy-freak about SIDS and liked to have my kids right where I could hear their breathing.  We noticed at about 3-4 months they slept better in their own room than with us.  I also suggest looking into a white noise maker or getting a room fan that has a gentle buzz to it.  That helps soothe babies to sleep because in the womb there were all sorts of noises going on and they're used to it.



I second bouncy seats or swings for when you don't want baby strapped to you (although with a Moby wrap its not like you'll really notice.  Did I mention I love those things?)   When she gets a bit older and her sight is better, sometimes just being able to see you makes them happy so having a positionable one for your house is a good idea.

Emily - posted on 01/26/2009

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A 6 week old baby cannot be spoiled. They are simply expressing a need at that age. I would definitely look into "Attachment Parenting" or AP if I were you. Check out http://www.askdrsears.com/ and http://www.attachmentparenting.org/ for more info. Dr. Sears has some great books about AP, and there's also a great one called "Attachment Parenting" by Katie Gramju.

Get a good sling or wrap and strap the baby to you so you can still have one or two hands free to get things done while you keep her close. :)

Enjoy and congrats!! Babies are the sweetest things in the world. :)

Christine - posted on 01/26/2009

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everything I've read and including my pediatrician says that you can't spoil a baby under 6 months.  Tend to her every need.  This will provide trust and security and in fact, set you up for a much easier time later on.  Research has shown that "attachment parenting" provides a much more stable mindset for the infant and will in fact reduce crying in later months.  Let her let go of you instead of the other way around.  Afterall, you carried her for 9 months and she's just not ready to be separated yet... give her time, the comfort she needs, and give her the ability to trust in you, and believe me, soon enough you will have your days, nights, and arms back!  Keep up the good work mommy!

[deleted account]

Yes, I do know whatcha mean! I've had to let her cry here and there for a few minutes and it just breaks my heart, but sometimes it just can't be helped. She's actually in her swing right now and has been for almost an hour. Woooooohoooooo! It's amazing how much I was able to get done since she's been in there....even had a little time to play online! Thanks again for the advise, it's just nice to know I'm not alone on this!

Anna - posted on 01/25/2009

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www.miracleblanket.com. It is a must have and will last for months (my son grew out of it at 4 months but he was a big baby). Use it for naps as well as at night. It is the one thing I would not do without.

Danialle - posted on 01/25/2009

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I swaddle my son in two blankets. He won't stay asleep if I lay him down unswaddled. I make sure it is tight enough so he can't wiggle out. He sleeps really well now. She will outgrow being held but it may be hard to break her. My son is now 6 months and still needs to be swaddled, Now i need to figure out a way to break that habit! One habit just leads to another that will eventually have to be broken. Good luck!

Junko - posted on 01/25/2009

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It's ok for babies to be held at times when she wants to--it makes her feel secure and don't think its "spoiling"..My daughter was like that,I always end up sleeping on the recliner with her in my arms just to soothe her and go to sleep. Don't worry,it will change and just enjoy the time that you could still swaddle your baby without spoiling her...Yes,I agree to some of the posters. Babies cry for a reason specially on their early stages but there are also some situation when babies cry because they just want to...has anyone here heard of "Purple Crying"???

Anyways,try using a baby carrier to give you time to do housework but at the same time be able to carry your baby with you. At night,you could try putting pillows on her both sides (like a hotdog) and under her legs so that would like mimic that someone is holding her or beside her. Someone also mentioned to me about a "miracle blanket", I checked it out but it turned out that it's just looks like an ordinary swaddling blanket. But then she said eversince she used it,her baby slept properly. I didn't buy the blanket but instead just used my baby's own blanket to swaddle her and somehow it worked. Or if your baby gets too hot, try just bundling her upper body and just put a pillow under her legs. I hope this helps :)

Sarah - posted on 01/25/2009

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my daughter was the same way around 6 weeks...which was bad because my house was on the market and i was always having to clean for a viewing...so i would just put her in a front carrier...i used a bjorn and a sling (not at the same time of course!). I know that doesn't sound very easy to do but trust me she'll grown out of it. It didn't spoil my child and it won't yours either. My daughter is one years old now and is very independent. She just needed a little mommy time. Babies are so close to their moms for 9 months and then when they are born bamm they're expected to content away from you...just give it time.

Nicole - posted on 01/25/2009

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Best of luck! I don't think I would let her cry until she's maybe 3 months or so. Young babies cry for needs insted of wants. Time goes fast enjoy holding her, my 9 month old is on the go!

[deleted account]

My baby is 2 months old, still eating every hour (during the day) and won't sleep unless I'm holding her. We co-sleep and even once she's sound asleep and I try and put her in the sleep positioner inbetween us - she will wake up right away and scream. I agree with others, most babies just want and need to be held. Personally, I think they are waaay to young at this age to let them cry it out.



Sometimes I can get her to entertain herself for a short time in her swing otherwise the only thing else that has been working so I can actually get a few things done around the house is my moby wrap. She loves it, she's being held and I still have use of my arms/hands.

[deleted account]

Wow! Thank you all for your words of wisdom. It's so comforting to know I'm not alone in this. I seriously thought I was doing something wrong, but I guess she's just a cuddly baby. Could be worse, right?? I will look into the sling as that may be my only refuge. I live in a different state as my friends and family, so no help there. I have a couple girlfriends here, but they have busy lives themselves. I guess I will just enjoy this time with her while she still yearns to be close to me and look forward to the day I get to sleep in a bed again. :)

Tiffany - posted on 01/25/2009

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Congratulations! I know it can get overwhelming the first few months but it is completely normal for your daughter to need to be held all the time right now. You won't spoil her from holding her too much. At this age there is also no such thing as a routine to them. It's good for you to keep things consistent with her that way she learns what to expect down the line. If you feel you need a break don't feel guilty for putting her in a swing or bouncer for a little while. And definately ask for help from your hunny, a friend, her grandparents so that you can get a break. I'm sure there are plenty ready to step in and cuddle for a little while.

Crystal - posted on 01/25/2009

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She's only 6 weeks old, she needs to be held. She just left the warm and comfort of your womb where you did hold her all the time. Why should she expect any different right now? If you need your hands then you should look into getting a sling. I still hold my 14 month old in a sling because he sometimes just needs to be held. He is also very independent, but all kids like to be held and loved at some points. There is nothing wrong with crying a little, but when they are that young no, you should not let her cry it out, she doesn't understand and she's crying for a reason, even if that reason is just to be close to you, and IMHO I think it's cruel to allow a baby that young to CIO when all they need and want is you.

Shari - posted on 01/25/2009

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First of all I will say "this too shall pass". My son is too, and I annoy him if I hold him too much, and there was a time when he was around 6 weeks old where I distinctly remembering laying on the couch with him sleeping on me, and me laying here crying feeling so lonely b/c I couldn't even get the phone or anything because I couldn't put him down. Forget the bathroom or eating. At night we had him sleep on me, and between us in our bed. It was the only way we all got sleep. We never had any fancy contraption, and we were all safe. With my second I got a sling and a wrap! Life was good during the day, I would stick him in that and he couldn't stay awake LOL. At night I couldn't put him down and he slept with us too for a while. But 4 months neither was in our bed anymore, and my 9 month old sleeps well through the night on his own. Both my boys needed love, and trust me sometimes I miss them needing to snug me all the time.

Lorilynne - posted on 01/25/2009

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One more thought: I know it can be trying when baby is crying and you need to do something like go to the bathroom.  Do you have a swing or a bouncey seat?  The bouncey seats that vibrate are pretty great.  Not all babies like them, my daughter didn't but my son did.  Just be careful about putting baby in them to fall asleep as you will have a hard time breaking the habit later.  Don't freak out if you put baby in it and she falls asleep, my son would do that occassinally, but I personally wouldn't use it as a tool to get baby to fall asleep.

Karen - posted on 01/25/2009

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my little girl was the same

the only thing that worked for me is a sling it was a live savour you still hold her but u can get on with other stuff my girl now sleeps 12 a day plays happily and is so good

if you get on

www.freedomslings.co.uk or

www.bigmamaslings.co.uk

they do some lovely ones i chose a ring sling they can be used up till 32lbs and are easy to adjust

hope that will help let me know how u get on

k x

so u could use them till they are toddlers

Lorilynne - posted on 01/24/2009

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Hold her.   She's not spoiled.  Babies before six months are not capable of being spoiled as another mom mentioned, it does actually make them feel more secure knowing that you are there to meet their needs.  If your arms are tired from holding her all the time, try wearing her.  You can get a front carrier (face her towards your chest until she can hold her head up well on her own) or try a wrap.  The wraps are pretty great because you can just wrap her right up to your body and she'll be so snug and secure, you will both love it.  Also, swaddling is great.  She'll grow out of this stage before you know it and trust me, you will miss having her fall asleep on your chest.  Do you have a bassinet?  Those are great first beds because you can put it right up to the bed and its nice and small so baby doesn't feel overwhelmed by all the empty space.  We have a bathroom connected to our bedroom and my side of the bed is right by it so I put the bassinet right next to the bed and then turned on the bathroom fan.  That slight noise was enough to keep my son calm so he would fall asleep in the bassinet but in the beginning, I did have to be in the room with him.  I've heard its possible to get babies on a routine at this age but I personally have never known anyone to do it.  Once baby gets a little older you should be able to get her on some sort of nap/bed time schedule.  For me it was around three months.

Brandie - posted on 01/24/2009

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Guess I kept it too simple... Babies do cry to tell you what they need... but , it is also important for there to be a balance. They also need to be able to self sooth.



I have had friends who constantly held there babies and then I am baby sitting and have to wash dishes or cook a meal and the baby is crying the entire time because they are used to being held all hours of the day.



I learned the hard way with my first child... but once I got to 4 kids, I feel I have an understanding of that balance....  as I said, "no baby was ever hurt from crying- it's painless"

Orangegloves - posted on 01/24/2009

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Sheri, there are always extremes in everything... otherwise there couldnt be an average! *grins and hands you the whip*

Sheri - posted on 01/24/2009

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I agree with the post just above mine. Some babies need to be held a ton and some don't seem to. Mine was the former and I was always pretty jealous of the moms who could lay their babies right down on a blanket and they'd be perfectly content! I did a lot of research on the subject since mine was so... "inconvenient", let's say. Well, babies are inconvenient and just because a method "works" doesn't mean it's best. (In generations past, regular whippings kept kids in line but I don't think anyone here believes in that anymore). The idea that a baby can be spoiled is an old-school myth without any scientific backing. Now that they're researching it more, they're finding the opposite is true... holding a baby that wants to be held is teaching them they can trust you and grows confidence (opposite of what everyone used to think). My 4-yr-old is now very independent, confident and secure, and he had very little, if any, separation anxiety as a toddler. Check out askdrsears.com and read up on Attachment Parenting. Be warned though, there are people who've swung way to the other end of the spectrum as well (I call them 'AP Nazis') and like to try to guilt-trip moms who don't subscribe to every little AP theory. Good luck and trust your instincts!!!

Orangegloves - posted on 01/24/2009

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Quoting Brandie:



I'll keep it simple... I am a mom of 4 and no baby was ever hurt from crying- it's painless! You need to let it go or you are going to regret it! Bad habits die hard... The baby will not know how to sooth itself & will always need you to do it :)






I disagree. Babies under 6 months are only crying for a reason - too hot, too cold, too tired, too hungry, whatever. They dont cry just for the sake of it and they need something. Crying it out only works, as has been said in some other replies, when the baby is old enough to understand soothing. Before 6 months they dont have the understanding or concept of cause and effect and if they cry, they need something. After 6 months, then yes, they can start to learn to sooth themselves.



Also, when you have a baby with reflux, crying too much can hurt them. It forces milk back up the oesphagus and into the windpipe which can then cause them to choke or stop breathing. It happened a lot to my daughter for the first 3/4 months and we had to have a breathing monitor and have her at an angle all the time otherwise she would stop breathing. Now that she is older and her sphincter muscle is more developed the problem is lessening but if she gets very wound up the same thing can still happen and it's terrifying to have your baby stop breathing. It's not the same as when a toddler deliberately holds their breathe, it's a genuine medical emergency.



 

Brandie - posted on 01/23/2009

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I'll keep it simple... I am a mom of 4 and no baby was ever hurt from crying- it's painless! You need to let it go or you are going to regret it! Bad habits die hard... The baby will not know how to sooth itself & will always need you to do it :)

[deleted account]

I think you already have some great replies, but there are two things that were my saving grace in the early weeks. The first was my sons swing; the motion and white noise put him out almost every time. Second, a nurse provided me a copy of 'The Happiest Baby on the Block' DVD. There is a book as well, but who needs a book when you can watch a 15 minute DVD with DH. Here's a link to information on the DVD. It looks pretty cheesy, but it was such a lifesaver. I would recommend it to any new parent, regardless of wether they were having problems with a cuddly baby or not.

Linda - posted on 01/23/2009

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My son was the same way, but he was also colic.  He didn't sleep in his crib until he was 6 months old.  I slept on a recliner with him on my chest.  The night  before I went back to work was he first night in his crib.    Well he is now 2 and has been sleeping in his crib for a solid 10 hours every night.  I know have 10 month old twins, and I made sure not to make the same mistake.  Their first night home from the  hospital I put them in their crib and it's been great.  They started sleeping through the night at 7 weeks.  Maybe you can try using a bassinet next to your bed so she can still hear/feel you.  Swaddling also helps.  Good luck, I know I didn't sleep in my own bed for 6 months and it was terrible.

Sarah - posted on 01/23/2009

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I have noticed that babies aren't into a routine until well after six weeks. I don't know if it is because they aren't capable, or what. But I really don't think that you can spoil them when they are that young. I also think that babies learn to self soothe only when they know what soothing is. That comes by example (holding them, comforting them). I know it might be scary to think that you are ruining your chance for some routine, but you will definitely get that chance later when she is older and can understand more. I hope I have helped at all. Good luck, and congratulations on your little sweety pie.

Brooke - posted on 01/23/2009

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I agree that infants do need to be held a LOT.  I used a mei tai carrier and a hotsling and LOVED them both.  I was able to have my hands free for all kinds of tasks and she was happy because she was close to me.  Think about it.  It's confusing for them.  A baby has been in the womb for 9 months where her needs have been met immediately, and now she's in the cold world, not nearly as comfortable as your womb, and she has to cry to get her needs met.  Also, I heard that to babies any need that's not immediately met puts them in survival mode.  She's completely dependant and doesn't yet know she can trust you.  Anyway, she feels safest when she's close to you and can hear your heartbeat - a familiar sound that she heard constantly in your womb.  All of that to say... hold her a lot, BUT you can also start putting her on a schedule.  Read "The Baby Whisperer".  It really helped me put my daughter on a schedule, and helped me know what to expect with each new age.  Her schedule has changed as she's gotten older.  It's a good book.

Valerie - posted on 01/23/2009

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Congratulations on your new little girl!!  I feel for you, I went through the same need to be held with my son who is now 8 months.  I think at 6 weeks she might be a little young to understand crying it out, but it is something that I do believe in a couple months down the road...babies should learn to self soothe because it helps them with sleeping through the night.  It does get better.  One relief for me was the safari bouncy chair.  It vibrated and he liked it for awhile, I think because it still gave him some motion, the swing helped for a little while too.  For sleeping, I would rock with him and turn my blow dryer on high (I would either leave it on the floor or hold it behind him not blowing on him obviously)...as he would start to fall asleep I would put it to low and then off.  It was a life saver for the first few months!!   Sometimes I would put him in the bouncy seat and put the blow dryer under it.  It was nice for a break for my arms.  Hope this helps!

Rebecca - posted on 01/23/2009

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Congrats! I think that you are a great Mom for asking for advice. I have three children and strongly believe that children need to learn to self soothe. However, in order to accomplish this they need to feel comforted and secure. I think that holding your baby as much as she wants is fine. Meeting her needs is what you need to do right now. As she gets older between 8-10 weeks you could start trying to provide more stimulation and getting a basic routinue. Babies who do the same things everyday will quickly learn what to expect and will be much calmer. Also, you might want to try starting to put her down for naps and bed just before she falls asleep. It may not work the first couple of times you try, but she will get it! Than she will learn to put herself to sleep! You may even get a few hours of sleep! Good Luck.

Jennifer - posted on 01/23/2009

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Congratulations on the birth of your baby girl - it is such an exciting time. You probably won't want to hear this but I think that babies at this age simply need to be held much, if not most, of the time. Have you tried a Bjorn or peanut shell (sling) so you are able to do things while she's with you? They didn't really work with my daughter, who also demanded to be held constantly for the first few months of life, but I have many friends who experienced great success. She'll outgrow this phase, and infancy, in the blink of an eye, so try to enjoy these fleeting moments because I promise that you will miss them. Also, young babies do not self-soothe and, according to most of what I have read (and heard from my doctor), should not be left to "cry it out." My husband and I alternated nights walking the halls with my daughter at 2AM until she fell asleep soundly enough to be put down in her crib. Here again, this is fleeting and will soon be a distant memory. Have you tried swaddling? Many babies, including mine, find great comfort in being swaddled. All the best to you in these early weeks...it's a tough time full of adjustments but you'll be through it so quickly.

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