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Old 11-18-2006, 02:21 AM   #1
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Just when I thought it was getting better...(sleep help!)

I need some help from you mamas re: sleep. The only help I'm getting IRL is 'Read 'Baby Wise' which I won't do, and 'Let her cry for a few days--she'll have to do it eventually.'
So...DD is in a co-sleeper in our room. She has never slept much--20 min. naps throughout the day for me (40 min. for MIL), waking every few hrs. thru the night & refusing pacis, but needing to suck my finger to soothe/sleep (or BF). She doesn't know how to suck her thumb and just hits herself in the face w/ her fists at night if I let her try to self-soothe at night...then escalates worse and worse till her face is covered w/ snot and she's hyperventilating. She will carry on for an hour (prob. more but I won't let her go longer than that.) I never let her cry alone, but am there next to her offering a finger, a back rub--but most of the time she pops up on her knees and refuses those things. She screams worse and worse until I feed her.
So...I started reading 'Happy Baby, Healthy Sleep Habits' and have found that she DOES sleep better (and go down for the night w/o too many tears) when she's better rested throughout the day. She even slept for a few hrs. the other night and has gone back to sleep w/ just a hand on her back a few times lately.
Now, she's back to waking often, won't go back to sleep w/o BFing--she's 9 m/o and is down by 7, up by 1, 3, 5:30 and 6:30 (though SOMETIMES she'll sit in her crib looking at her tag book till 7.) I don't get to sleep till 1ish, so I'm sleeping 5 hrs w/ 3 wakings in-between. I'm exhausted. She seems tired most days.
WDID? WWYD? I want to use a gentle approach--I don't want to put her in her crib. I desperately wish I could help her self-soothe, but she just doesn't get how to suck her own finger...yet she can lift up my hand and place my finger in her mouth. I've tried to let her do it on her own and she goes from slightly awake to really, REALLY upset.
Help! I don't know what to do and I've misplaced my book!

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Old 11-18-2006, 09:55 AM   #2
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Re: Just when I thought it was getting better...(sleep help!)

I don't have any answers for you but wanted to say hang in there! My ds just turned 1 and he is not a self-soother either! He never would take a botlle, pacifier or his thumb. He has a "lovey" but that is not enough to help him. We've read The No-Cry Sleep Solution and that has some good ideas also but we've been through lots of sleeping stages, many seem to be related to teething but last week he slept through the whole night (20:30 - 5:30) without nursing! Of course he only did that 1 night but it reminded me that there is light at the end of tunnel. Godd luck!
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Old 11-18-2006, 07:58 PM   #3
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Re: Just when I thought it was getting better...(sleep help!)

My dd is just like this too. She goes to bed around 7 and wakes up anywhere from 3 to 5 times before getting up around 8. I've noticed that it is worse when she is teething, could that be it? The only thing that lets me get any sleep is to be topless and just put her right next to me, then she can latch on by herself and I'm not completely woken up.
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Old 11-18-2006, 08:37 PM   #4
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Re: Just when I thought it was getting better...(sleep help!)

My oldest son was this way too.
He never self soothed, he was up after about 11 every night and I had to nurse him every couple of hours till morning.
It really does get better, I quit talking about it to friends and family that I knew pushed Cry it out, I pretty much just gave up (I called it surrender to parenthood) and followed his lead, instead of trying to push him into a way of sleeping that didn't work for him. I figured parenting him the way that worked for him was my job, at least till he was old enough for me to explain to him why mommy needed to sleep.
He eventually slowed to waking once at night (around 18mths I think) and I had to actually touch him and tell him to lie down, go to sleep.
He also has some sensory problems and is borderline OCD not sure if that is anything to do with the way he slept,. but thats him.
He's on his first year in college and I can't wake him or get him out of bed to save his life. So they doeventually sleep
On a side not, the second baby was sleeping well as soon as he was born, Dh thought there was something wrong with him, seeing he didn't wake up and cry at night.
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Old 11-18-2006, 09:31 PM   #5
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Re: Just when I thought it was getting better...(sleep help!)

Weissbluth does talk about regressions in the book. See if you can get another copy from the library. I love that book.

Have you tried different loveys? DD is really attached to a blankie that has minkee and satin on it. I just gave her a bunch of different things over the course of the few weeks and watched to see what she was more drawn too. She never took a pacifier, and she sucked her thumb ONCE when she was three days old in the Dr's office. I was a thumbsucker and I was so excited that day because I thought she would be one too. I am thrilled she found a blankie that works for her.

How much solid food does she eat during the day? DD always woke up a lot to eat at night when she was about to have a growth spurt. I started giving her more to eat during the day, and she slept better again. 10mo was a big devlopmental month for us....so it could be that too.

Good luck, every once in a while they just wake up a lot for a week or two: teething, growth spurt, change in sleep schedule. It can throw you and dd off for a while, but they do like to keep us on our toes!
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