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  1. #1
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    Default So what are my options?

    DD is 8mnths and is nowhere near sleeping through, we don't even get a 2 hour block usually. She started sleeping through at 11 weeks, slept through 3 nights in a row, and then I went back to work for 4 hours and that 4 hours has changed our lives dramatically. She now comfort feeds 8-9 times a night. So we co-sleep now. Even still, it doesn't combat the comfort feeding, it just means I don't have to get out of bed, and I wake as she's stirring, I watch her with one eye to see if she's waking or is just sleep moving/talking, and then react accordingly. She doesn't have a dummy, I don't like them, but I have tried one because I'm at my wits end.

    I have tried Elizabeth Pantley's "No-Cry Sleep Solution", and I don't know if I'm some sort of extra-terrestrial, but that did nothing for us. I've been doing the pull-off method she suggests for about 4 months now....and no improvement.

    We've tried the whole sleep routine at night, dinner, bed, pjs, nursery rhymes, feed, bed. She knows when it's bed time. But it's staying asleep that's the problem. Her day naps are good, she's not having too many or too little.

    We tried going to our MCHN nurse for a day sleep service. I was basically put in a room and they taught me to wrap her and pat her and that was it. I was ENCOURAGED to feed her to sleep, when I explained countless times that feeding to sleep is our problem. When she wakes at night she thinks she needs the breast to get back to sleep again. All it has done is made DD want to be wrapped now as well.

    I'm in tears as I'm writing this. I'm so drained. My partner and I fight about her sleeping because it's so frustrating. All my friends are constantly gloating about their precious, perfect children and how they slept through at 6 weeks, blah blah blah.

    I have looked at different authors on the subject and is it just me, or is it "controlled crying" or "it will improve in time"? There's no middle ground...basically, it's practically my fault she's not sleeping through because I'm not doing everything I can, I'm not trying EVERYTHING to get her to sleep better. So what the hell am I supposed to do?? Just deal with it? Because I'm not. I'm tired, and frustrated, and would give ANYTHING for a full nights sleep. I love my daughter dearly, but I wish she would take a bottle so I could just palm her off for a night.

    So what do I do??? I'm not expecting her to sleep 12 hours a night. I would be happy with even one or two wakings.

  2. #2
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    Hmmm firstly
    how is her day feeds?
    eg: how often? how long does she stay attached?
    Is she on solids?
    mixed feeds with formula or strictly breast?
    just wondering if she may be hungry?
    my first born was also like this and its definitely draining!
    a lil reassurance... it does get better!
    my baby right now is 7 months... and gets very restless... i know its his Teething so i try to cater to that best i can so that we both get a good sleep. i also co-sleep other wise he wakes even more often.
    i hope i have been a little helpful to you!
    please keep us updated

  3. #3
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    I know exactly what you are going through. DS was waking as many as 10-12 times per night up until he was 12 months. DH and I were very tired.

    First let me tell you that people lie. Sleeping through the night seems to be this "magical" milestone that everyone talks about and judge each other's parenting skills by. There is NOTHING wrong with your baby because they don't sleep through the night. She might just be a high needs baby- God knows mine is one of those at night and yet he is brilliant during the day. So stop listening to what other people are telling you and do what you think is right.

    Secondly have you tired having DH rock or pat you DD to sleep. We did this when DS was around 12-13 months but could have done this sooner. I BF him and before he was asleep I handed him over to DH who rocked. The first night he cried in DH's arms for over an hour. The second night is was 45 minutes, then 15 minutes until finally he was fine with DH putting him down. Pantley and Dr.Sears believe it's okay to have a baby cry as long as they are being held by a parent (or something like that). The first couple nights are really hard but I promise it gets easier.

    I agree that you could try giving her some cereal or yoghurt right before bed as part of your routine. That worked brilliantly for my sister's LO but not so well for me. It's worth a try.

    We co-slept for awhile as well but DS was too squirmy and I was getting no sleep so we stopped that.

    If it's any consolation my DS only slept through fully for the first time last night and he's 18 months. I had him down to 1-2 wake ups which I know you would love right now.

    Good luck and feel free to PM me if you need some more support.

  4. #4
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    I can honestly say that its not you its bub. My DD had the worst sleep 7-10 mths and it finally improved at 14mths. Between teething/crawling/walking/separation anxiety/winter-flu season it was crap.

    This is what worked for us. We would do the dinner/bath/boob routine and she would go down. Then I would go to sleep immediately and DH was in charge till midnight. There was no reason for her to need a feed for at least 4hrs and I'd get 4hrs uninterrupted sleep. So he would resettle by either rocking/patting/co-sleeping in another bed if needed.

    At midnight I would bring her to me to feed (a full feed - both boobs) and hand her off to DH again till 4am.

    then I would get her to feed and she would stay next to me.

    We did this for a week to break the constant feeds. DH took time off work cos he reckoned he coudlnt work under those sleep conditions. After 4 days she worked out that it was only 2 feeds a night. then after 10 days we just co-slept between the 11-4. She'd wake for a feed at 11, I'd bring her to bed and she'd feed then sleep till 4 where I'd feed her again and transfer her to her cot. that way we all got blocks of sleep. Then at 14mths I used Dr Jay Gordon's nightweaning to completely stop night feeds.

    good luck. its exhausting but it does end. This is the worst age in bubs for sleep. When they work out walking it finally does improve.

  5. #5
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    I just saw the today show and they have a new e book called the gift of sleep!
    It teaches bubs to self settle!
    Google today show and watch the story!
    Hope that helps

  6. #6
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    I have been in your situation exactly . From 3.5 months DS went from waking once (sometimes not at all) to every 1 - 2 hours. I fed back to sleep because nothing else worked (we didn't co-sleep though as he slept worse). When he was about 9 months I got a point where things really needed to change - I was severly sleep deprived and starting to get beyond frustrated with DS.

    I slowly weaned him from feeding to re-settle by timing his feed every time he would wake up, and gradually reducing that. Ie. 1 min for a few nights, take him off the breast and rock/ pat until asleep, put back in cot. Then 45 seconds feed for a few nights and rock/ pat back to sleep, then down to 30 second feeds for a few nights. Then I stopped feeding and picked up and rocked/ patted back to sleep, slowly progressing to putting him to bed awake and finishing by patting in this cot. Then I went to just patting him in his cot. My memory is a bit foggy, but I think this took about a month. It wasn't exactly 'no-cry' - there was some crying when I would take him off the breast, but crying in mums arms and crying alone are 2 very different things to me. He wouldn't cry for very long either - only a minute or so. The night waking still continued for awhile longer, but it was less frequent and he was easy to get back to sleep with a pat on the back. Now at 16 months he mostly settles himself when he wakes up (unless he is sick/ teething).

    There is nothing wrong with you or your baby, some babies just don't sleep well. You will get there eventually.

    ETA: I had tried EVERYTHING imaginable to get DS to sleep better before weaning off feeding to re-settle (more solids, less solids, different bedtimes, night light, dark room, offer water, music - the list goes on!). It was a bit of a difficult road, and ultimately I ended up getting less sleep at the start because re-settling took longer, so if you want to go down that track you need to be prepared to get less sleep. If you choose to wean off feeding at night just remember if it all gets too much for you or bub just stop, get her back to sleep however you need to and try again next time. There is no way I would walk around the house for 2 hours with a screaming baby. If DS got really upset I scrapped my settling technique and fed back to sleep and tried again next wake up.
    Last edited by decemberbubba; 11-05-2012 at 10:14.

  7. #7
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    Sounds like you have it rough.... Below are some options. Apologies if they are already things you've looked at.

    - introduce a dreamfeed around 10pm (babies should be weaning off dreamfeeds at this age but for continual wakers they may be useful In breaking the cycle).
    - increase the amount of solids during the day (especially protein eg meat). Use home cooked food instead of store purchased (much higher in sugar content and other nasties).
    - don't feed bub each time she wakes. A bub at that age should be able To Go 12 hours without a feed. Bub is waking out of habit not need. After a week of no comfort feeding bub will likely learn. If this is too harsh for you offer water to bub or limit to one feed at 3-4am.
    - when bub wakes at night keep things boring (no talking, dim lights, no playing).
    - get rid of all sleep aids (dummy, rocking to sleep, patting, feeding to close to Bedtime). These can interfere with bubs ability to self settle.
    - introduce a comforter with your smell on it (ie that's been shoved down your bra for a day or two). Squares cut from muslin cloth are great as they are breathable.
    - check the temperature. If you can heat bubs room to 22 and dress bub in a 1.0 tog grow bag and a long sleeve bodysuit.
    - try and limit day naps to no more than 3-4 hours. Don't let bub sleep past 4:00pm
    - with the night feed, give bub solids approx 90 minutes before the final milk feed


    Good luck

  8. #8
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    Ok im going to tell you what worked for us. Im against controlled crying. There is a book called save our sleep.
    There are many routines in there to go by. The day routine is important to the night routine.
    I never let my baby cry. Whinge yes, cry no.
    My baby has a dummy and that helps as when she wakes up at night she cries until she finds her dummy and she puts it in and goes back to seep on her own.
    What time are you putting her to bed?
    This is how my routine went at 8 months old. (I did this routine obviously altered a bit from 2 months old. My baby slept through from 6 months old)
    7am breakfast.
    9.30 - nap
    10.30am snack
    12.30 - lunch
    1.30 - nap
    3pm - bottle
    7pm bottle and bed.

    If your baby wakes between these hours do not pick her up but comfort and leave... even if it takes you two hours a night for a week stick to it!

    At 6 months old babies can sleep through without feeding and you feeding her is just giving her a reason to wake.

    You can also introduce a dream feed at 10.30pm when you pick them up while sleeping ans let them eat while sleeping.

    It's important that bed time is consistent for this to work.

    I feel for you... we need our sleep to recharge and I pray this will help you x

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  9. The Following User Says Thank You to knomie For This Useful Post:

    VicPark  (09-06-2012)

  10. #9
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    I feel for you. I have a crappy sleeper too and we have done it all as well. It's definitely NOT your fault. We have found that we just need to keep adjusting and do what works. We've done lots of things to improve sleep and it did get better! Very much better.
    Its a bit of one step at a time though. As I see it, your main issue is cutting down the night feeds and you have some excellent suggestions to try from other posters. I second getting your OH in to settle in between feeds. You could try cutting down to two feeds first and in between let your OH do the settling. She will protest and want you and boob but hopefully she will get on board and learn other ways to be settled. That would be a great first step. If its not working and it's too stressful, try something else. Try to stick with one thing for a few days but if you know in your gut it's not working, you just know. In my case gentle is best.
    Good luck! and hang in there!

  11. #10
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    My son is exactly same, wakes up almost hourly for a boob,nothing can settle him without it . The problem is i think he gets too much wind from sucking and becomes very uncomfortable , which wakes him up as well. I do wanna take some actions not to offer him a boob , but i am too tired to get out of the bed and rock the screaming baby .

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