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sleep deprivation

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
so is anyone else only getting 2 hours of sleep at a time? i know, some babies sleep 4 plus hours at night from the get go but mine do not. my son didnt and my new little one doesnt either. i just assumed this was normal for a newborn but i went to my 4 week post partum check up today and my midwife asked me how much i am sleeping at a time and said i looked tired. she went on about how the definition of sleep deprevation is getting less then 4 hours of consecutive sleep per 24 hours ect. she suggested i pump and have dh feed the baby and that i go sleep in another bed for 4 hours. we cosleep and i really dont think that id be able to handle it, knowing my baby wanted to nurse and sleeping seperate from her. i mean what did cave women do? give a bottle so they could sleep more? i know im not a cave woman but i try to follow my instincts and mother in a primal way. should i be worried about myself only sleeping 2 hours at a time and feeding my baby on demand?
post #2 of 15
i know ALL those feelings!

try for a daytime pump & nap. it might be easier than night.
or even a babysitter whilst you nap!

do you co-sleep? that helped me a bit.

good luck!
post #3 of 15
It's funny you mentioned the cavewoman thing because I'm always asking myself when it comes to these types of things "What did they do in primitive times?" and try to go with that.
I'm cosleeping and waking up every 2 hours or so. I just take dd, roll her over (burping her in the process) and repositioning her on the other breast. I'm awake maybe 2 minutes, but definitely not getting 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep. I didn't even get that when I was pregnant. In fact, I haven't had that since dd1 was born Sounds like the same with you.
If I can, I try to take a brief refresher nap when dd1 takes a nap, but it's pretty rare. I feel like this is probably what cavewomen did, too.
I feel like I could probably go to bed earlier at night and that would make me less tired during the day, but it doesn't seem to happen. Overall, I'm doing okay tired-wise.
post #4 of 15
I also usually only get 2hrs of consecutive sleep between feedings, once in a while 3. One night Hubby slept with him in the family room and I got 4hrs of consecutive sleep and couldn't believe how much of a difference that makes, but I don't like doing that often cuz Hubby works and needs sleep too lol. I am getting better at rolling over to feed the baby and falling back asleep, but it still takes a while for me to fall asleep. I really hope Nathan starts sleeping just a little longer between feedings.
post #5 of 15
I don't care how often Matteo wakes up to nurse, but I could really do without the "OH HAI IT'S PARTY TIME @ 4AM!!" that he seems to do every night. Nothing gets him back to sleep- nursing, pacifier-ing, back patting- and it usually lasts an hour and a half. Overall I'm not doing too bad on the tired front... I'm tired but not mind-numbingly exhausted.
post #6 of 15
the best thing i can say is to get rid of the clock in your bedroom.
if you dont know how long its been since the last time you were awake it causes less stress and you will fall back to sleep easier.
it really helped with me.
i set an alarm on my phone if i have to be up at a certain time.

i would say we most likely wake up every 1 1/2 - 2 hours or so and stay in bed for about 10 hours and i feel ok most of the time, still a bit tired but she is only 6 weeks old. i will sleep again eventually!
post #7 of 15
4 hours of uninterrupted sleep?? Maybe before I had Elyse I might have gotten that. Elyse didnt' start sleeping more than 2-3 hours at a time until I was almost due with Lexi. Im happy with 2-3 hours straight which I get about once a night before one or the other (or DH) wakes me up.
post #8 of 15
I think about the cavewoman too but in a bit of a different way. I assume that this cavewoman lived in a community where there were many other women nursing infants/children and were available to help nurse other children as well.

This helps me when I'm feeling extra exhausted and worn out - its just got to be okay for me to get some rest and have DH feed a bottle of breastmilk.

Mommas got to take care of themselves to take care of their babes!
post #9 of 15
DS#1 has been sleeping through the night since he was six months old, so this has been a hard adjustment for us. Especially DH, as he never woke up with DS#1, but DS#2 has a set of LUNGS! He lets the whole neighborhood know when hes not happy. PLus I have to go back to work 1/6, so the stress of knowing I will have to function in the office in a couple of weeks like this is depressing me. DS#2 can go about 3-4 hours, sometimes, but as mentioned by someone else, every night is different. last night he fell asleep at 930, and never woke up til 1. The night before, he was up until 1230, and up every two hours after that. Oh holy night, I dont want to wish my sons life away, but I really cant wait until this stage is over and hes on more of a "schedule". Again, am I a terrible mother?
post #10 of 15
Originally Posted by kgrands View Post
I think about the cavewoman too but in a bit of a different way. I assume that this cavewoman lived in a community where there were many other women nursing infants/children and were available to help nurse other children as well.

This helps me when I'm feeling extra exhausted and worn out - its just got to be okay for me to get some rest and have DH feed a bottle of breastmilk.

Mommas got to take care of themselves to take care of their babes!
I thought about that, too, but somehow never equated a dh with a cavewoman! But that's so true--mamas who try to practice natural family living without the cavewoman's extended community are bound to be exhausted.
post #11 of 15
all my babies have been your typical waking every 2-3 hours (every 1-2 hours during a growth spurt) sleepers/eaters. ds didnt sleep more than 2 hour time slots until 10 months old when we began supplementing at night. i am not doing that this time. it wrecked havoc on my family, and i have to homeschool my older two and we are moving to germany next month as well.

we have tried giving charlotte a bottle 3 seperate times and she hasn't taken to it yet...which is okay with me. i'm not to ready to force it, and i only have dh give it to her when i am at my serious wits end of sleep deprivation...i'm talking walking into things and consistent sudden crying jags. (i started crying the other day in the middle of the commisary..and it was the "ugly" kind of uncontrollable crying. )

yes, it does only last a short while, and i remind myself of that on the really hard nights..but there is diffinitly nothing wrong with getting help (in whatever form that is) every once in a while.
post #12 of 15
Me too. It's been that way with all 3. I thought that was normal. I guess I am sleep deprived then. I don't think I could pump and give a bottle. I'm able to get by, I just go to bed early...heading there now! This time passes and eventually the sleep gets better and this is a fond memory.

It really sucks to be tired though and every one needs different amounts of sleep. I hope you find something that works for you and your baby.
post #13 of 15
I guess everything is relative - to me, 2 hours of sleep straight would be nice!! LOL. How sad is that?!?!?! I rarely get that - Isabelle is one of those babies who would stay latched on 24/7 if she could! At night, she typically nurses in shorter, more frequent spurts as opposed to longer, less frequent nursings. So she probably nurses for 5-10 minutes out of every hour during the night. Yet somehow, I don't really feel sleep-deprived. Maybe I'm just used to it because I've been nursing at least one baby/child for more than 6 years now - I think it's harder to adjust at first, but your body eventually gets used to it - I remember feeling much more sleep-deprived with my first baby, even though she went several hours between nursings, just because the whole interrupted-sleep thing was so new, KWIM?

So, arismama, you said your mw said you look tired, but how do YOU actually feel? If you feel OK, I wouldn't worry or analyze too much. If you're so exhausted you can't function, that's different. But if it's not too much of an issue for you, then I wouldn't worry about what is "average" or what other people's babies are doing, KWIM?

Anyway, ITA with the advice of NOT looking at the clock! It's much better when you don't know what time it is/how long you've been sleeping. I try not to look myself, but I'm usually tempted. And I'm admittedly an extremist on this , but I never do bottles or pacifiers, ever (don't even own any of either). That's just me, though - if someone else were feeding my DD, I wouldn't be able to sleep anyway because it would just feel wrong to me to be separated from her at all (at this age anyway).

So this is why I love co-sleeping so much - I may be nursing on and off all night, but I don't need to wake up fully - most of the night I just leave my shirt up and latch her on while half-asleep, so even though I know she's "waking" me every hour or so, I don't feel like I'm being awakened really, if that makes any sense. I get into bed with some diapers & wipes and a glass of water on my nightstand, and I don't get out of bed for like 10 hours or so, so I feel more rested than I would expect to, knowing how much she nurses at night.

Incidentally, this is how most babies nurse in traditional societies - I learned this when becoming an LLL Leader - when they study mom/baby pairs in cultures that are not influenced by modern media, etc., they find that the babies nurse much more often, but for shorter times, than we typically see in industrialized societies. So maybe the 2-3 hour thing isn't really the "norm" after all...

ETA that I'm not judging anyone who does pump/give a bottle to get more sleep - didn't want it to sound like that. I did try that with my first, and decided it was actually harder for me than just rolling over and nursing her myself!! I also have oversupply though, so for me, going 4 hours without nursing would be painful anyway and I'd probably wake up from engorgement and leaking!
post #14 of 15
Thread Starter 
we're doing fine. my son was a once an hour baby too, i think babies probably do just want to suck all the time naturally. Eliza has been sleeping for 1 2.5-3 hour strech at night now for a few nights, she is 4.5 weeks old, so that has been nice! i can't yet imagine leaving her at night to be fed by dh while i try and sleep else where. i would worry the whole time.
post #15 of 15
I'm glad to see this post. I have a two week old. She wakes to feed every 1.5 to 2 hours. She will only sleep on my chest or my husbands. My lactation consultant suggested that my husband do one pumped bottle feeding each night so that I could get four consecutive hours. But since we started that a few days ago she seems fussier than ever for hours and hours after the bottle. Might just be a coincidence. I know that the four hours of sleep really made me feel like a human being again...not constantly crying and exhausted. But I'm going to skip the bottle feeding for tonight and see if she's less fussy tomorrow. Today it was a 12 hour marathon of fussiness and it wasn't worth the 4 hrs of sleep.

Right now all I can tell myself is that this is temporary and one day it will be different. Also, I try to keep an eye on myself to be sure I'm not getting too depressed b/c of sleep deprivation. My husband and I have discovered that I seem to go downhill pretty fast after dinner- so I try not to take myself too seriously during those hours-- knowing that it's just a lack of sleep.

Right now she's hooked up to me with a moby wrap and we're relaxing on the reclining chair. She's snoozing and I'm going to close my eyes for a bit too...my motto is "sleep when baby sleeps"!
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