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  1. #1
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    Default settling a baby (6 month old)

    ok so i need help. i absolutely suck at settling babies. i’ll happily admit i have no idea how to do it. i’m impatient i think which works against me as i like to see instant results please hit me with your foolproof failsafe baby settling techniques and ideas.

    dd is now 6 months old and, as the mchn predicted, feeding to sleep appears to have stopped working. last night she woke at 1, 3:25 then again around 5. dh was dealing with ds ping ponging between his bed and our bed, but at 5 he took her (i was trying to sleep propped up in bed with her on my chest but she kept snuffling around and wouldn’t settle) and told me to get some sleep. he took her to her room (i’d had her in the bassinet in our room as she woke previously and i feed her to sleep then pop her back in there as it’s easier) and managed to get her to settle then he got up and prepped dinner for tonight. anyway i digress.

    my point is, how do i settle her to sleep when boob wont work? i just don’t seem to know what i’m aiming for? if i get her to a point where she’s asleep in my arms after a feed, she wakes when i transfer her to cot. if she’s happy and settled in my arms, i pop her in the cot and she starts crying. i don’t really want to do any crying, like i don’t mind letting her grizzle a bit but i don’t find any type of crying really works for me, i get too upset and anxious myself.

    dh seems to be able to settle her better and i’m not sure what i’m doing wrong? is it because he has no boobs and she can’t smell milk on him? he’s definitely more patient than i am.

    and how long does the whole settling thing take? like do i spend 15 mins then if it’s not working i can assume she’s not tired? i just don’t have a clear road map so i don’t really know what i’m aiming for. which in turn results in me feeling confused and frustrated. i feel if i had a clear road map to follow, i’d feel a lot better.

    any ideas welcome. i can’t really compare ds at this same age because by now, he was off boob completely and we’d give him a bottle to settle. which in hindsight, was silly, because it became a huge sleep association for him. i’m hoping to be able to teach dd to self settle and not need us or boob to get to sleep.

    any ideas etc welcome!

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by turquoisecoast View Post
    ok so i need help. i absolutely suck at settling babies. i’ll happily admit i have no idea how to do it. i’m impatient i think which works against me as i like to see instant results please hit me with your foolproof failsafe baby settling techniques and ideas.

    dd is now 6 months old and, as the mchn predicted, feeding to sleep appears to have stopped working. last night she woke at 1, 3:25 then again around 5. dh was dealing with ds ping ponging between his bed and our bed, but at 5 he took her (i was trying to sleep propped up in bed with her on my chest but she kept snuffling around and wouldn’t settle) and told me to get some sleep. he took her to her room (i’d had her in the bassinet in our room as she woke previously and i feed her to sleep then pop her back in there as it’s easier) and managed to get her to settle then he got up and prepped dinner for tonight. anyway i digress.

    my point is, how do i settle her to sleep when boob wont work? i just don’t seem to know what i’m aiming for? if i get her to a point where she’s asleep in my arms after a feed, she wakes when i transfer her to cot. if she’s happy and settled in my arms, i pop her in the cot and she starts crying. i don’t really want to do any crying, like i don’t mind letting her grizzle a bit but i don’t find any type of crying really works for me, i get too upset and anxious myself.

    dh seems to be able to settle her better and i’m not sure what i’m doing wrong? is it because he has no boobs and she can’t smell milk on him? he’s definitely more patient than i am.

    and how long does the whole settling thing take? like do i spend 15 mins then if it’s not working i can assume she’s not tired? i just don’t have a clear road map so i don’t really know what i’m aiming for. which in turn results in me feeling confused and frustrated. i feel if i had a clear road map to follow, i’d feel a lot better.

    any ideas welcome. i can’t really compare ds at this same age because by now, he was off boob completely and we’d give him a bottle to settle. which in hindsight, was silly, because it became a huge sleep association for him. i’m hoping to be able to teach dd to self settle and not need us or boob to get to sleep.

    any ideas etc welcome!
    I feel you.

    I have no advice. I can't do crying either, so I just do whatever works.

    Ds1 had a dummy and was rocked.
    Ds2 was boobed to sleep until 3.5. We went through stages like you're in where he's fight it, but he'd usually give in
    Ds3, well, he's still bobbing. If he's fighting it: I can stand up, and he will usually fall asleep over my shoulder like when being burped. He will fall asleep in the pram or car easily, occasionally with a grizzle.


    I've read of making a strong routine for sleep, actively darkening the room, a sleeping bag, story, music, patting etc... but I find feeding to sleep easier 🤦‍♀️ long term though, it's not. I used to be able to pop ds1 I the cot, music on, and pat his back/ bum for a few mins and he'd sleep.

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    turquoisecoast (31-10-2019)

  4. #3
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    I swear by this book! I think I’ve mentioned it to you before. Not instant results (sorry!) but unfortunately you’d be hard pressed to find anything that is. IMG_7691.jpg
    It’s not a strict routine, it’s all about being flexible and finding what works for you and your baby. What I found most helpful was it actually explains the physiology of sleep and the difference between babies and adults.

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    Bluebirdgirl (31-10-2019),turquoisecoast (31-10-2019)

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    I went to sleep school with dd1 at about six and a half months because she started waking more and more until I was a hot mess. Shushing, patting etc never worked for me, it just seemed to upset her more when she only wanted boob and I was within reach but trying to pat like an idiot instead.

    Bf is pretty much as powerful a sleep association as there is. A lot of babies will need it to settle overnight if that's how they're going to sleep. You could try teaching her to self settle at night, so feeding her and making sure she goes into the cot awake - but I think there is often crying involved, which like you said I don't really have the stomach for if it's any more than grizzling. At sleep school they told us that dh should settle her if the wake-up isn't food related (two feeds overnight is still reasonable for lots of babies at that age), that way she was still held/cuddled but not fed back to sleep. I would feed her a little earlier than usual, then hand her over to dh for rocking to sleep, just to break that bf sleep association. She got it pretty quickly and stopped waking so often - it wasn't easy knowing that it was me she wanted, but I wasn't able to function during the day when I was boobing her constantly overnight, so it was in her interest to have dh be the official settler because it got to the point where I didn't dare drive etc because I could barely keep my eyes open. I think it's fine to do that all night if you've got a village to help you during the day, but most of us don't so need to get some sleep ourselves. If you do this obviously dh needs to be on board, calm etc. She seemed to settle with him because she couldn't smell milk, was held etc, so ended up waking only when genuinely hungry.

    Ultimately for many babies what they have/do as they fall asleep is what they'll need overnight when they wake, so you have to gently and gradually change that sleep association.

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    turquoisecoast (31-10-2019)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalina View Post
    I went to sleep school with dd1 at about six and a half months because she started waking more and more until I was a hot mess. Shushing, patting etc never worked for me, it just seemed to upset her more when she only wanted boob and I was within reach but trying to pat like an idiot instead.

    Bf is pretty much as powerful a sleep association as there is. A lot of babies will need it to settle overnight if that's how they're going to sleep. You could try teaching her to self settle at night, so feeding her and making sure she goes into the cot awake - but I think there is often crying involved, which like you said I don't really have the stomach for if it's any more than grizzling. At sleep school they told us that dh should settle her if the wake-up isn't food related (two feeds overnight is still reasonable for lots of babies at that age), that way she was still held/cuddled but not fed back to sleep. I would feed her a little earlier than usual, then hand her over to dh for rocking to sleep, just to break that bf sleep association. She got it pretty quickly and stopped waking so often - it wasn't easy knowing that it was me she wanted, but I wasn't able to function during the day when I was boobing her constantly overnight, so it was in her interest to have dh be the official settler because it got to the point where I didn't dare drive etc because I could barely keep my eyes open. I think it's fine to do that all night if you've got a village to help you during the day, but most of us don't so need to get some sleep ourselves. If you do this obviously dh needs to be on board, calm etc. She seemed to settle with him because she couldn't smell milk, was held etc, so ended up waking only when genuinely hungry.

    Ultimately for many babies what they have/do as they fall asleep is what they'll need overnight when they wake, so you have to gently and gradually change that sleep association.
    thanks. that’s pretty much what i thought. dh is great, very calm and supportive. he deals with ds in the night though, which could be anything from no wakeups to 7 wakeups a night. dd was sleeping through or was easily fed back to sleep, so it hasn’t been an issue. now i feel like it’s all falling to dh and he’s the one working. i don’t feel too bad yet, but i know a sleep debt accrues pretty fast and i’m horrid when i’m tired. short fuse, anxious and generally irritable and yucky. definitely want to avoid that if i can.

    there’s a drop in mchn session on now so i might head along to that and see what they say. i tried to phone up to book in with my usual one and was told they don’t take bookings for non milestone appointments. i thought the whole point of the service was to support mums and babies??

    anyway thanks for the tip. i’ll chat to dh and see what he thinks.

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    Kalina (31-10-2019)

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    Quote Originally Posted by SheWarrior View Post
    I swear by this book! I think I’ve mentioned it to you before. Not instant results (sorry!) but unfortunately you’d be hard pressed to find anything that is. Attachment 102126
    It’s not a strict routine, it’s all about being flexible and finding what works for you and your baby. What I found most helpful was it actually explains the physiology of sleep and the difference between babies and adults.
    i keep meaning to get it but i don’t have much time to read these days. i’ll try and get my hands on a copy and do a skim read anyway. thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by turquoisecoast View Post
    i keep meaning to get it but i don’t have much time to read these days. i’ll try and get my hands on a copy and do a skim read anyway. thanks!
    I just downloaded it on my phone, then it was easy to just read if I was feeding Bub or cooking dinner.

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    I used the book ''The Happy Sleeper" with DD and it worked well.
    At this stage, you want to be working towards getting your DD to start to self settle. The happy sleeper talks about a soothing ladder- working up the steps until you get to the point of something that settle them. So going into the room is first thing, then maybe talking to them in a quiet voice, and then patting them gently. But the idea is you do the minimum to help them settle, and give them lots of opportunity to do it themselves.
    When I put DS in the bassinette, I sit next to it, where he can see me. If he's happy with that, that's all I do. Once he starts to self settle- touching the back of his head and his face, I'll sneak out of the room and leave him to it. I dont wait for him to be asleep, just not upset.
    We also use white noise as a sleep cue for him (And to cover DD thumping around)
    Last edited by SJ565; 31-10-2019 at 14:01.

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    🤣🤣 ds is like a pack of elephants on the wooden floors upstairs so i use the ipad in dd’s room when i’m putting her to bed to cover the noise.

    so i just saw the mchn. she basically said the same as what’s been said here already and mist of what i sort of suspected.i guess i feel better having heard it consolidated. she also said the qec.org.au website has some helpful settling audio podcast type things which i just had a quick listen to. she suggested feeding dd then handing her to dh to settle to sleep, just to break that boob to sleep association.

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    Kalina (31-10-2019)

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    Quote Originally Posted by turquoisecoast View Post
    🤣🤣 ds is like a pack of elephants on the wooden floors upstairs so i use the ipad in dd’s room when i’m putting her to bed to cover the noise.

    so i just saw the mchn. she basically said the same as what’s been said here already and mist of what i sort of suspected.i guess i feel better having heard it consolidated. she also said the qec.org.au website has some helpful settling audio podcast type things which i just had a quick listen to. she suggested feeding dd then handing her to dh to settle to sleep, just to break that boob to sleep association.
    Why are they super quiet, happy to play on their own, then the minute you put the baby down its like a marauding stampede? And of course, something they URGENTLY need to tell you about a dream, or their toenail or someone at daycare who has a new hair clip

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