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I just can't do this anymore- UPDATE!! #44

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
It is 6:30a here and I have been up since 12:58a. My eyes are so red and puffy from crying and sleep deprivation and I just can't cope anymore. DH is turning into a monster at night from lack of sleep- he blames me, yells at me, etc. DS is up every 20-45 minutes. It takes 15-30 minutes to get him back to sleep and then he's up again. and again. and again. He's been like this since he was 2 months old- he's now 5 months. Most mornings he's wide awake around 4:30 and doesn't go back to sleep until 5:30 or 6. We co-sleep, ebf on demand, I'm a sahm, he's growing well, happy during the day, etc. He is a terrible napper though- everything wakes him up. Naps last 20-45 minutes. We've tried a side-carred co-sleeper, teething tablets, colic calm, tylenol, white noise, being "ready" right before he wakes.

He's sitting on my shoulder fighting sleep now and pulling my hair out. I just can't cope. I need sleep. I can't remember the last time I has any real sleep. I know this isn't "normal", so please don't just tell me that. I can't take being told it's teething, it's a growth spurt, it's milestones, etc. It's just not.

We have no family here and are spending the holidays here because we just can't travel like this. We have no friends that can help out- most don't have kids.

Please, help. Anything? I can't do this anymore.
post #2 of 49
Mama. I have so been there. I'm sorry you are going through this, it is a rough rough spot.

Can you have a friend or family member come watch your DS for you while you take a nap for a few hours?

Have you taken your DS to see a ped? Have you ruled out reflux or food allergies? I would start there.

post #3 of 49
post #4 of 49


nak

But I just couldn't read and not respond.

I've Soooo been there, done that. It sucks. DS1 was just like that. I won't tell you how long it took for him to outgrow it. Just know that he did eventually start sleeping. I basically just white knuckled my way through it...and we survived. The one thing we didn't try that I wish we had was craniosacral (sp?) therapy. Lots of mamas say it was a miracle worker for their LOs. It might be worth a shot if you are at the end of your rope.

Hang in there...it will get better.
post #5 of 49


Have you investigated allergies? Dairy is the usual first choice to eliminate.

good luck!

-Angela
post #6 of 49
I'm so sorry. I remember issues like this with DD3 and it's one of my biggest fears with the new baby.

I also recommend checking out food allergies as a culprit. I ended up going on a full elimination diet with DS when he started showing similar signs as DD3 and it helped tremendously. He was like a different baby.

Have you also tried swaddling him really really tight? A swing? Music?

I'm so so sorry. I wish you had someone close to come relieve you for a nap! Motherhood can be so very difficult. It really does take a village.
post #7 of 49

My son was like that until I let him sleep on his belly, he was three months. Changed everything! Of course, I laid there and stared at him I was so scared of something happening to him, but DH and DS slept!
post #8 of 49
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone! This is the next best thing to a real shoulder to cry on. I just feel like I am doing everything wrong. In the past five hours, DS has taken 3 naps so I know he is just exhausted. You have all made some great suggestions- I have a call into the ped (but we were there 2 weeks ago and they said "normal"), and I love the idea of craniosacral therapy. Our insurance doesn't pay but at this point I'd rather be broke and healthy than save money and wither away from sleep deprivation. Unfortunately everyone is closed for the holidays.

We started to put DS on his tummy a few weeks ago and it helped some. His is quick to flip if he wants so I felt comfortable doing it. I also like the idea of trying to swaddle again. DS hated swaddling from the start and always wiggled out, but my guess is just that we were doing it poorly. We do have a swing that he never cared for but maybe he will enjoy it now.

I have been very reluctant to try an elimination diet because we have never seen any other symptoms of food allergies. We had spoke with the ped about it and she said she doubted that it was a problem. She said their practice rarely sees any true food sensitivities and most problems are explained by other issues. Anyway, maybe it is time to cut dairy just to see (maybe after tomorrow )

I just feel so hopeless. Up until now I kept deluding myself thinking that each night was *the* night and I would forget how bad it was. Now I just feel depressed, like it will never get better and everything will keep falling apart around me.
post #9 of 49
I always thought that sleep deprivation was by far the #1 most difficult thing about becoming a parent. Pregnancy was okay, labor I did not enjoy but survived... but the sleep part, man... that was tough.

I was lucky in that my son never cried - never had colic or any of that stuff... it's just that he also didn't sleep! I didn't feel comfortable just going off taking a nap and leaving my infant sitting there alone unattended, so I never slept either. All those "new motherhood" books that said "Sleep when the baby sleeps".... HA! I threw them away. He had 5 or 6 broken hours of sleep a night, and 45 mins. - one hour each day. That was IT. He seemed fine, but it was killing me.

And then.... when he was 13 months old we moved. I have no idea if it was the new surroundings, or if he would have anyway, but he began to nap every day for 3 solid hours!!!!! 1-4pm. Just like that. At night he still woke up once or twice, but went back to sleep quickly. I became a new woman.

So hang in there... this won't go on forever and will come when you least expect it. I promise he'll grow and eventually sleep!
post #10 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by penstamon View Post
I have been very reluctant to try an elimination diet because we have never seen any other symptoms of food allergies. We had spoke with the ped about it and she said she doubted that it was a problem. She said their practice rarely sees any true food sensitivities and most problems are explained by other issues. Anyway, maybe it is time to cut dairy just to see (maybe after tomorrow )
I've yet to find a dr who didn't completely discount any connection between food issues with ANYTHING else.

I was a terrible sleeper. I took hours to fall asleep even though I was completely exhausted, woke frequently, couldn't go back to sleep, always falling asleep during the day. It all changed when I discovered a gluten allergy. Once I cut it out of my diet, my sleep improved 100%. I can fall asleep in 15 minutes, I no longer wake up several times a night, and I can make it all day without passing out on the couch the moment I sit down.

Your digestive tract is the second largest system in your body (next to skin). You get all your nutrition from it, it is the main eliminator of waste. If there is something wrong there, you can bet it can affect just about ever other part of the body. Remember, food allergies do not always manifest in typical ways.

It may take a while to sort out, but if you do it seriously, at the very least you'll determine that food is NOT be the problem.

Good luck.
post #11 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by penstamon View Post
I know this isn't "normal", so please don't just tell me that. I can't take being told it's teething, it's a growth spurt, it's milestones, etc. It's just not.

Please, help. Anything? I can't do this anymore.
I'm in this place now, too. The thing for me is that no matter what the real reason is-- teething, white noise, light sleeper, growth spurt, milestone, etc, I will never *really* know what is causing it because DD can't tell me. And so it doesn't matter, and I try to adopt a one-day-at-a-time mentality. Sometimes it's one hour at a time. I keep telling myself to get rid of any preconceived notions of what my baby "should" be like. Yes, it has brought me to the edge MANY times. It helps me to get rid of any expectations whatsoever--so what little good stuff I get is very, very good. When I expect a few solid hours of sleep and don't get it, I am devastated. When I expect nothing but a hellish night and I get two hours back to back, I am surprisingly okay with it.

(I don't mean this to sound snarky at all, so I hope it doesn't come across that way.) Big hugs, mama.

It kind of makes me feel like I really *can* run that marathon someday, because if I can do this...
post #12 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by penstamon View Post
I also like the idea of trying to swaddle again. DS hated swaddling from the start and always wiggled out, but my guess is just that we were doing it poorly. We do have a swing that he never cared for but maybe he will enjoy it now.
If you have the resources, get a Miracle Blanket. It can make all the difference. You just can't swaddle like that with a receiving blanket or any of those velcro swaddlers. They also have incredible customer service. 100% money back guarantee (including shipping!) any time in the first 30 days for ANY reason. They'll also replace it if it's defective no matter how long you've had it, and will replace it if it's been destroyed (like if your dog decides it looks delicious) for the first 4 months.

I plan to get at least 2 for the new baby because heaven forbid one is in the wash. It's the only way my SIL could get my nephew to sleep for months.
post #13 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by sehbub View Post
If you have the resources, get a Miracle Blanket.
I agree!!!! My DD went from sleeping in 60-90 minute stretches to 4 hour stretches!!

Tummy sleeping helps her sleep longer too--not quite as much as the Miracle Blanket, but still pretty good.

I always meant to try sacrocranial therapy with my first DD because of the difficult birth, but I never did.

And getting rid of dairy completely REALLY helped with my first DD's sleep!
post #14 of 49
the first thing that somes to mind is silent reflux. Google it and investigate.. my dd had this, and while it did get better with age; I remember where you are at. In the meantime, see if elevating you bed will help, or making sure the baby is sleeping at a 30 degree angle using a pillow wedge. We had a tucker sling at that age. Elimination diet would also be a good thing to look into, not to be gross, but how is you lo's stool? I would rule out all things "medical".. in the meantime, make yourself nap when the baby does. DH would give me a break and I would make sure to take a 2 hr nap when he got home. This will get better, really. It could take 2 weeks to get all the dairy out of your system, but it could really help in the longrun. We did have to put dd on reflux meds to ease the pain. Hugs!!!!
post #15 of 49


After my DS was born, I felt like I finally knew why sleep deprivation was a form of torture. I found he slept best swaddles in the swing (with a side to side motion) and rain sounds. He also was one who did not sleep for long stretches at a time. I would suggest gining your DH a night off one night and having him sleep elsewhere, then have him watch DS the next day so you can sleep a few hours. This has worked really well for us.
post #16 of 49
This may sound crazy if you've never heard of elimination communication but it can totally work.
When your baby wakes, before you nurse, remove the diaper and put the baby over a little receptacle (either a little potty or Tupperware container) and say, "shhhhhhhh" the baby may pee and let the baby fully eliminate. Your babe may go back to sleep without needing t nurse or with just little suck for comfort.
Often babies are uncomfortable with a full bladder and they are not born wanting to pee on themselves.
check out the EC forum on this board for more info..(If that interests you)
post #17 of 49
I think you've gotten lots of good advice here.

DD was, and is still (at 30 months) a terrible sleeper. It's midnight, she's been in bed since 9pm and has been up twice already. Luckily, now that she's older, when she gets up in the night she comes in to sleep with me and sleeps more soundly (I do not though, which is why she starts the night in her own bed).

Things that helped when she was a baby:
- swaddling (I have 1.5yd square peices of flannel, I swaddled her until she was 14 months)
- gripe water (she has an allergy to garlic and was affected even when I ate and then nursed her)
- nightweaning (but I waited until 14 months, she was still so reliant on BM before that and not eating solids that I just couldn't do it, her health depended on it)
- tummy sleeping (even swaddled she could turn her head from side to side and usually could get her hands out to push herself up)

And frankly, I'd ignore the doc. While I'm not one to put a lot of stake in the "eat right for your type" and other sorts of diets, I do believe wholeheartedly that a LOT of people suffer from food sensitivitites. My DD can't handle garlic and onions, I can't have red food dyes, my DS can't have aspartame... when I eat red dyes I am up for nights on end, it's awful. It can take up to a week to get it out of my system enough to get a decent night's sleep. When I drink diet sodas my DS has a REALLY rough night. The same baby that usually sleeps 4-6 hours at a time will be up every 30-45 minutes all night long.
post #18 of 49
My 4 year old was JUST like that as an infant and it turned out to be reflux. Nursed every 45 minutes, even at night and just cried and screamed all the time...he also felt a little better on his tummy than his back, but eventually had to sleep partially upright. It took a very long time for it to get better, but at 4 he is an amazing sleeper and starting out with the WORST kid has made the others feel like a breeze.

Also (and I might catch hell for this) but our 18 month old was going to be a cosleeper just like our first. We have the arm's reach side car as well as the little center-of-bed snuggle nest. We noticed that when we put him down on the bed for naps he would wake up cranky and irritable as soon as we got into bed...but if we put him in a different room in the packnplay he stayed asleep until he needed to eat. He would fall asleep again after eating, and then become irritable if we touched him or moved on the bed (or made even a slight noise) whereas in the totally dark closed off room he would fall solidly asleep again. We ran out to get a moniter, borrowed a crib and we had our first non-cosleeper at about a month old. It did suck to get up and walk across the hallway to nurse, but the boy just literally could not handle the stimulation of being near us, so it was better than having him cranky and sleep deprived all night! To this day he has to be put into his crib when he gets tired (no CIO...he calms instantly when he sees his crib) because ANYWHERE else he just stays awake and miserable. He won't fall asleep in the car, a sling, a stroller, or laying on or carried by me or DH...only in HIS room, in HIS crib. God forbid we ever had to sleep somewhere other than home because he would NOT be able to do it.

So in summary:

1) Check for reflux, and know it WILL get better.

2) Check to see if maybe he just has a sensory overload...I wouldn't have believed it, but there really are some babies that just can't handle being around other people while trying to sleep.

3) Good luck! The other suggestions here have been excellent as well!
post #19 of 49
I agree with everyone who's suggested trying to eliminate some things from your diet. The first 6 weeks after my daughter was born was just how you'd describe. At about 6 weeks I was going back to work and we also had an appointment with a lactation consultant because of some latch issues. During our appointment, the LC asked if there was anything else we had questions about, so we mentioned that she just wouldn't settle down at night and wouldn't sleep anywhere but on our chests. She said to try eliminating dairy because milk and particularly ice cream could be very irritating to her (and I was eating ice cream like almost every night!). I stopped eating all dairy and within a few days it was SO much better! She started going to bed at a regular time, and was even sleeping through the night. She's almost 10 months now, and I can eat some dairy, but if I go overboard I do notice a difference in her sleep qualities.

I really hope you're able to get some good rest and figure this out! Good luck
post #20 of 49
Try a different sleeping position maybe. My son only sleeps well on his tummy. Once we put him on his tummy at night around a month he started sleeping around 6 hours stretches. I know every doctor says not to do that, but you know, my son is healthy and he sleep great this way.

Also, dairy or other food sensitivities like soy. I have 5 food allergies and when I found out what they were and cut them out of my diet I felt rested and fell asleep so much better in addition to other benefits in my health. My son sleeps horribly if we do any other formula (we had to formula feed due to my medical conditions, not enough milk) other than Similac Sensitive. He'll start to wake up frequently at night. He can't even tolerate the off brand Parents Choice sensitivity which is also lactose free. We had tried that and after a week he started waking every hour and would just cry and cry. Once he was back on Similac Sensitive he went back to sleeping up to 12 hour stretches.

So I'd try that. Start with dairy and if you see an improvement then you know. If you see only a slight improvement move onto Soy. Those 2 are the biggest culprits.

Good Luck
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