why does my son fight so much when he's tired? what can i do to help him get out of that habit?

Lyndsay - posted on 02/10/2010 ( 11 moms have responded )




When my son is tired he won't fall asleep on his own so i try and put him asleep myself i bounce him and rock him sing to him and he screams and cries and fights me. I make sure he's not hungry or wet or anything before i try and he still gives me a fit.If he is sick i will give him medicine and if he is gassy i will give him gas medicine.I tried giving him juice to see if he is thirsty but after about 4 ounces he screams.I give him is pacifier and shush him i try everything!!Can anyone tell me why my 8 month old son is doing this and what can i do to make him stop? Oh by the way if your not holding him or close by him he wakes right up.


Renae - posted on 02/11/2010




It sounds to me like your baby is getting over-tired. Baby's are a bit backwards!! When they are very tired they have difficulty going to sleep and staying asleep! When they are only slightly tired, they go to sleep more easily and are less likely to wake up. Do some research on "tired signs" or msg me if you like.

How many hours is your baby awake for before going down for a nap or before bedtime? Usually an 8 month old can do 2-3 hours of awake time before becoming tired.

I also think that your baby needs to learn to go to sleep on his own. I am making a big assumption here as I only know what you said in your post - but I think your baby might become a bad night sleeper (if he isn't already) unless he is taught to go to sleep on his own.

From what I know about this situation - which again is limited - I think you should try Tracey Hogg's pick-up/put-down method. I usually dont recommend this method first off, but I think your baby will become over-tired and over-stimulated with some of the other sleep methods.

Here is what you do:

1. Put him in the cot awake (when he first starts to become tired).

2. When he cries pick him up straight away. Do not pat, stroke, rock, bounce or anything you would normally do, just cuddle him close until he completely calms down. Then put him back down in the cot.

3. Repeat... repeat... repeat. If you put him down and he doesn't cry, leave the room and leave him to go to sleep, if he cries go back in and repeat some more. Until you put him down and he goes to sleep.

4. You could be repeating this over 150 times as a worst case and it could take a few hours. Tracy Hogg recommends you count, so you can see how the number of times you have to pick him up is reducing every night.

5. Do this every time he goes to sleep, day and night.

6. I have read lots of blogs that say it takes longer than Tracy says. But Tracy says it the number of times you have to pick him up should halve every night, which means it should take at worst about 4 nights. Although some mums report it can take up to 2 weeks.

You are welcome to contact me with any questions or to discuss alternate methods (including CIO).

Jane - posted on 02/10/2010




it may be that he's in the stage of having a "witching hour". most kids get them where there is no consoling them. our pediatrician said it's the only way they can release stress - i said, "what stress??? she's a baby that's treated like an Egyptian queen!" but she said they have little bits of stress like everyone else.
maybe he doesn't want any stimulation at all, if you just hold him in a quiet dark room, maybe he'll settle down quicker. our kids fall asleep best if i rock them in my arms in their room until they're asleep before putting them in their crib and they've both always slept thru the night.
maybe he's bored, try reading him a book that he can look at.


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[deleted account]

He could have separation anxiety. My second son would HAVE to be fed to sleep (he was breastfed) and if I put him in his own bed he would always wake up. He couldn't be settled by my husband and so he slept beside me and woke up to feed several times a night for the first year of his life. If babysat he would cry the whole time I was gone. After he turned 1 and we weaned him he settled and became less dependent on my company and started sleeping through the night.
Separation anxiety happens to most children at some point during the first year. Some children only get this anxiety at sleep time. It can be quite frightening for them. If it is only happening at sleep time he should eventually grow out of it. But for now he just needs that extra comfort of having you there. You could try getting him to bond with an object like a toy or blanket and have that with him when he falls asleep and eventually this object may be enough to help comfort him. You may want to do some research on separation anxiety on the internet or some books at the library or talk to a health carer for advice on ways you can reassure him and help him get into a good sleeping habit.
Goodluck and may peaceful nights be not too far off:)

[deleted account]

just put him down in the crib.. hes prob so tired that he only wants to go to sleep.. at 8 mos its a good time to let him fall asleep on his own, which is prob what he wants..just have a nice bedtime routine so you can set a bedtime.. change him into pjs , fresh diaper, feed him about an hour before you know when hes usually tired for bed.. rock him a bit, make sure hes burped, put him down while hes awakeish.. you should be good to go girl.. then ur nights wont be so stressful..i found with my boys that when i noticed they were getting tired at this age i would do what i just told you and it worked really well.. go for it

Lyndsay - posted on 02/11/2010




Thank you all of you i am glad i am on here i get other mothers support this away

Brandi - posted on 02/11/2010




monitor his schedule and try to put him down BEFORE that period of being overly tired. a schedule will really help. It takes time.

Shannon - posted on 02/11/2010




My first is three and a half now but man did we have problems with her sleeping when she was younger. I made sure she was dry and full and warm and whatnot when I would put her down for a nap or bedtime and she would scream like there is no tomorrow. My mother eventually told me just to let her cry herself to sleep. I started doing that and she would cry for about 20 minutes and then eventually fall asleep. She definelty was one that could not go a full day without napping if you wanted any hair on your head that is.

Theresa - posted on 02/11/2010




Start putting him to sleep before he gets over tired. When they are over tired they can't calm themselves for sleep.

Cari - posted on 02/11/2010




This is gonna sound really stupid but i have an 8month old and he used to fight me tooth and nail when he was tired. What i found worked for him is the times i would an hour or so before he was due to go to bed sorta turn the lights down. not of but just have less light in the house. They begin to become tired. then i used to bath him in a nice warm bath and have quiet time. that way their bodies have calmed down and is more likely to settle into a sleep. This might not work for you but it did for my little man

Nadine - posted on 02/11/2010




I never got my kid used to rocking him to sleep. why don't you try leaving him in his bed even if he is crying. Eventually he will fall asleep It's hard the first few days, but eventually they will sleep by themselves. Another thing is that when a baby is too tired it is harder to fall asleep. Try putting him to bed earlier. If my son gets overtired when he sleeps he wakes up every little while cries takes a few sips of a bottle and goes back to sleep.

Carrie - posted on 02/10/2010




sounds like the reason he wakes up if your not close by is because you've always held made him hes use to it...maybe not if so after you lay him down and he wakes up don't pick him up, just pat him and see if he goes back to sleep. My son always has FAULT sleep goodness still dose but he listens now i goes hes 4, so its different. Maybe he gets to tried maybe you need to try earlier, also a nice warm bath and bottle read to him don't play with him once the process for bed starts just be quite and lovey, that always made it easier for me.

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