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cosleeping and different bedtimes

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
So the other night it seemed DS was ready for sleep around 7 pm (usually we go to bed together at 9 pm). I thought I would nurse him to sleep as usual and slip out for a few hours before I was ready for bed. As I was getting ready to close the door, he woke up crying. I laid back down with him (which usually would calm him) but it didn't work and the crying escalated. I just brought him back downstairs and dh took him and he went back to sleep.
I don't always want to go to bed at 9 pm (definitely not earlier) so how can we get used to different bedtimes?
And, how do I establish a bedtime routine if he needs to go to bed before I am ready? As it stands now, I put him to sleep downstairs usually until I am ready for bed at which point I need to wake him to change his diaper for the night.
post #2 of 13
I can never get DD to stay asleep w/out me at bedtime, no matter how long I wait into her sleep cycle, etc. It started to feel like such an effort so now we have a bedtime routine, then she goes to sleep "for the night" in a sling in the cradle hold (she's 14 mos) or upright in the Ergo (we usually do this on nights she has a hard time switching off, as she can stay on the boob for comfort while falling asleep). That way I can putter around the house for a few hours. It's not complete "freedom" but then there is no battling at bedtime. Also, DD is usually deeply asleep after a few hours and it's a cinch then to just lay her down and get into bed with her whenever I'm ready. This has definitely limited my ability to leave the house after 7-8pm, but I figure it is for a short amount of time, and I'd rather have a happy DD.

Oh, and if there is a night that I know I want to stay up unusually late (like tonight, when I am glued to the ball game - Go Giants!), I will purposefully put DD in the Ergo so it is easy to nurse her if she stirs around the 2-2.5 hr mark...
post #3 of 13
What we do might not be what you want to hear....DD2 goes to sleep for the night around 7ish. DH usually rocks her to sleep and then one of us holds her on the couch until we are ready for bed, usually around 10:30/11:00. The other kids go to bed about 7:45 or 8:00 so we can take turns with DD2, who is almost one. Sometimes she wakes after about 2 hours and I nurse her back to sleep. DH and I watch TV, read, or play on the computer until our bedtime and then we lay DD2 in our bed with us.
post #4 of 13
we have some difficutly too. I usually do go to bed with her. I even brush teeth, shower etc with her so we are both ready. BUT if I am not too tired I like to get up. The only thing that has helped is some suggestions in No Cry Sleep Solution, specifically the Pull Off. She still wakes many (ugh) times at night BUT she now sleeps solidly for around 3 hours. Before doing this I was a wreck becasue after I got up I know she would wake up crying every 20-40 minutes
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Ok so I usually do something similar but will incorporate an earlier routine if possible. It seems ds has already begun to associate the bedroom with bedtime. He will fuss around 8:30ish and when we go upstairs usually he stops bc he knows what's coming.
I may check out the No Cry book as I've seen lots of references to it.
Thanks for the feedback!
post #6 of 13
I have always had my kids fall asleep on me in the living room (where the noise and movement is) and then when they are fast asleep, I put them down near me in the living room while I get things done... I have done this with all of my kids, starting when they were about 2-3 months old (before that I would hold them until I went to bed). At first they would wake up when I put them down, and I would just repeat the process... then they got used to it...

At the moment my dd falls asleep around 7:30-8... I head to bed between 12 and 1...
post #7 of 13
For us co-sleeping and family bed has always meant family bedtime. I never planned it like this, it's just how DD is. She needs us there all together to sleep. Luckily we all compromised and family bedtime is 9:30 or 10. I couldn't do it if it was any earlier. 7 is rough. When she gets tired early I make her stay up! I never had separate bedtimes work for us but it's always been a dream, like STTN.
post #8 of 13

You know, it's taken a long time...I've been working on this since ds was like 6 months old because I was always SO AWAKE when he would want to go to bed...but now it takes me all of 15 min. to have him conked out deep enough for me to escape until whenever I want to sleep. 


I think the biggest thing for us, was cutting out his nap. DS is 22 months, and we've been going with no nap for 2 months now. He's really variable about his wake up time...anywhere from 5am-9am, but he's out for the night before 8pm these days. Which, is frankly AMAZING after our previous frustrating attempts at bedtimes and bedtime routines. 


He does still nurse down to sleep, but I'm able to slip nipple out after about 10 min. And, he does nurse all night once I come to bed, but normally I can sleep through all that. 


Our routine is to look for big cues from him...requests for "2" books (the number I read to him while he nurses lying down), wash feet (he goes barefoot most days, so this is a must!), or on his more demanding nights, "milk on bed". He washes feet with Daddy and brushes teeth and then picks out two books. We turn the fan on high for noise and lay down to nurse while I read. Whenever he's in deep sleep, I slip away. Works like a CHARM so long as he doesn't take a nap during the day...which he normally doesn't want anyway. 


We only took the nap away once it became such a struggle...like an hour just to get him down resulting in him staying up until midnight and giving hubby and I just no time alone. I will say, I use to think the bedtime routine thing was crazy...how were we going to set up one when his own night routine was different every day! But, now, it seems to cue him right to sleep. Amazing.  And he loves being able to direct us in what comes next!

post #9 of 13

Your babe is just a day older than mine :)


I started around 7 or 8 weeks with a bedtime routine, starting around 7:30pm- bath, massage, swaddle, nurse, and books if he was still awake. Up until last week, I could lay him down awake but drowsy, turn on his little musical seahorse, and lightly rub his face and "sshhh" and he'd fall asleep, and I'd head back downstairs until I was ready for bed. We haven't been able to pull that off since daylight savings, though... He was getting tired earlier, and it took us a few days of adjusting our routine, dinner, etc... We're now working on pushing bedtime back closer to 7:30 or 8, because I (or "we," he'll be coming with me) just got a p/t job and starting two weeks from now won't be home until 6:30 most evenings. But he's been waking up 20 minutes after I put him down, then he gets overtired and cries hard- and this is not a fussy baby- and it's been taking an hour or so of DH and I trading off to get him to sleep.


I'm just trying, and really starting the past two nights or so, to be really consistent about calming him, putting him back in the cosleeper. He cries, I pick him up, calm him, put him back. It's eating up a lot of my evening, time with the husband, time to get stuff done, but I'm hoping it'll pay off.


I started today having him nap in our room with lights off/curtains pulled, swaddled like we do for nighttime, instead of downstairs in the bright kitchen in his swing. I gave in this morning and napped with him in bed with me, and he slept for two hours, but he's just now waking up after a 30 minute nap up there alone. I guess I want to get him used to going to sleep that way, although when he's napping at work with me in a few weeks, I'm sure there'll be some adjustments.


Sorry for rambling- I know that wasn't much help, since I still haven't figured this out on my own. Maybe it's the age? :)

post #10 of 13

I don't have anything to offer but commiseration--I was just coming on here, about to post the SAME QUESTION. My little guy used to sleep ok without us, but the past several weeks, if I leave him in our bed, even if he seems really limp asleep, he wakes up within 30 minutes.


The only exception is his nap, which he takes in his swing in the living room--I often can get 2-3 hours of good sleep for him that way. I'm thinking about maybe having him do the early part of the night in his swing and then taking him to bed when I go.

post #11 of 13
Get a good book, or large stack of good books. I have a dim lamp that I leave on while nursing my babe to sleep, as soon as her eyes are shut, I open my book and read until she is sound asleep. I can usually get up then. But if the book is good enough, you may just not want to. wink1.gif

I know it makes it tough to get things done, but this too shall pass. Just milk the time to relax and enjoy.
post #12 of 13

For the first few months we kept them out with us (in a swing or in arms) until we all went to bed.  Starting between 3 and 6 mos (child dependant) they started to need an earlier bedtime (encouraged by me!) and we could put them down and walk out.  If they woke, they got DH.  The 'no nursing' rule between their bedtime and mine virtually eliminated any waking.  I didn't start that immediately.  Just after I got tired of running down the hall every half hour :)


eta:  thinking now I didn't do that no nursing thing with my son until he was over a year, I think.  I kept hoping that if I 'tanked him up' early in the night he'd sleep better but it was SO the opposite for both of mine.  The more they nursed early in the night the more that set the pattern for the rest of the night. 

Edited by D_McG - 12/1/10 at 5:45am
post #13 of 13

We used to keep the littlest one with us until we went to bed, so even though I'd nurse him down around 7, he'd stay out in the living room with us while we watched a movie or read or whatever until 10-11p. 


At around 6 months, it started to seem like he could no longer sleep through the light and noise.  He now sleeps in the guest room down the hall from the living room and we keep the video monitor on him.  When he wakes, I nurse him back to sleep, but he normally sleeps until it's time to go upstairs if he's tanked up and it's quiet and dark in there.  It has allowed my partner and I to have some much needed time w/o kids around!

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