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Encouraging stories wanted: older babies who start sleeping through the night

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Would anyone like to tell me a story about their baby who had been waking up frequently and who then started on their own at some point after nine months to wake up less frequently or to sleep through the night? I want to believe that it is possible.

Thanks! orngbiggrin.gif
post #2 of 24

Would it be encouraging enough if the baby was waking less frequently at 18 months than at 9 months, but still rarely slept more than 2 hours at a stretch?  How about if the baby finally slept through the night (not every night, but sometimes), but it didn't happen until she was almost 2 and I nightweaned her?  Those are the most encouraging stories I could come up with about my frequent night waker, but I'm afraid they might not strike you as very encouraging.

post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
That is absolutely encouraging! Your frequent night-waker sometimes slept through the night before she was two? That is definitely hopeful. Thanks!

Any others out there?
post #4 of 24

Another encouraging thing I could add is that nightweaning was really easy and didn't involve real crying, just a bit of sleepy fussing at first.  And that seemed to be what finally did the trick and got her sleeping all night.  On the 5th night of no nursing, she slept through the night for the first time ever.  That was when she was just short of 2, and by the time she was 2 1/2 she was probably sleeping through the night about half the time (and typically waking just once the other nights.)  Nightweaning my second (who was a better sleeper) was also painless for both of us, and once he was nightweaned he immediately starting sleeping through the night every night.  So I'd definitely recommend thinking about nightweaning at some point.  I'm not sure how early I'd try it.  Both my kids were almost 2 and showing definite signs that they were ready for it.  I suspect it wouldn't have gone as well, for DD at least, if I had tried it much earlier.  (I guess I should add, to be completely honest, that with DD we also had to go through Nightweaning Part 2 a few months after I thought she was nightweaned.  After months of never nursing at night, she started waking up in the middle of the night and asking to nurse.  I said no, and there was pitiful crying.  I can't remember how long that lasted - probably no more than a week or so.)

post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Daffodil. That's helpful to hear. It's nice to know that whenever we're ready for night weaning we may get some more sleep!
post #6 of 24

My DD is almost 11 months. She occaisionally slept a number of hours straight over the first 9 months of her life, but it was rare. For a long time she was up every 2-4 hours. I did a couple things that helped:

I believe I was keeping her too hot. She seems like a hot sleeper and doesn't require heavy PJs.

I think she needs more to eat than I thought. She has a fast metabolism or something. She is often too busy to bother with food, and I would just let her skip it a lot, and then she would want to nurse all night. I make a good effort to offer either nursing, a bottle, or solids every 2 hours now. We do lots of snacks during the day (cubes of cheese and bread are a favorite - she stands at the coffee table and eats them. For some reason now that she is mobile, standing and eating is really fun.) We do a puree twice a day so I know some is going down. And lots of opportunities for finger foods.

I got her to fall asleep on her own when going to bed, which immediately transferred to being able to put herslef back to sleep when she was half awake during the night between REM stages or whatever. Before this she had to nurse to go to sleep, and it just wasn't working for me anymore. To do this, we were often standing at the crib or lying in our bed with her. Never CIO, but we would lay her down, when she fussed we came back and laid her back down, rubbed her back, turned the music box back on etc. Just repeated a lot. After a few nights she got the hang of it. First she would go to sleep with us standing there touching her, then sitting in a chair in the room. Now we basically do her bedtime routine, kiss her, and put her down and she will play or look at her books and then pass out whenever she is ready while we enjoy our evenings.

We often do a bottle during the night. She not only takes more milk from it (therefore able to go longer between feedings)  but she also just got the idea that night time is not for nursing. Dad often gives the bottle.  I do still nurse her some during the night, especially when I am too lazy to fix the bottle or don't have time to pump, but for the most part that is the routine she has come to know.
 

post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 
Those are good suggestions, MN Babydust. Thank you!
post #8 of 24

thanks for sharing! It gives me hope...and suggestions to try out!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MN BabyDust View Post

My DD is almost 11 months. She occaisionally slept a number of hours straight over the first 9 months of her life, but it was rare. For a long time she was up every 2-4 hours. I did a couple things that helped:

I believe I was keeping her too hot. She seems like a hot sleeper and doesn't require heavy PJs.

I think she needs more to eat than I thought. She has a fast metabolism or something. She is often too busy to bother with food, and I would just let her skip it a lot, and then she would want to nurse all night. I make a good effort to offer either nursing, a bottle, or solids every 2 hours now. We do lots of snacks during the day (cubes of cheese and bread are a favorite - she stands at the coffee table and eats them. For some reason now that she is mobile, standing and eating is really fun.) We do a puree twice a day so I know some is going down. And lots of opportunities for finger foods.

I got her to fall asleep on her own when going to bed, which immediately transferred to being able to put herslef back to sleep when she was half awake during the night between REM stages or whatever. Before this she had to nurse to go to sleep, and it just wasn't working for me anymore. To do this, we were often standing at the crib or lying in our bed with her. Never CIO, but we would lay her down, when she fussed we came back and laid her back down, rubbed her back, turned the music box back on etc. Just repeated a lot. After a few nights she got the hang of it. First she would go to sleep with us standing there touching her, then sitting in a chair in the room. Now we basically do her bedtime routine, kiss her, and put her down and she will play or look at her books and then pass out whenever she is ready while we enjoy our evenings.

We often do a bottle during the night. She not only takes more milk from it (therefore able to go longer between feedings)  but she also just got the idea that night time is not for nursing. Dad often gives the bottle.  I do still nurse her some during the night, especially when I am too lazy to fix the bottle or don't have time to pump, but for the most part that is the routine she has come to know.
 

post #9 of 24

We also experienced a HUGE change when DS1 night weaned.

For the first 2 years of his life he was up at least every 2 hours, Every. Single. Night. One 3-hour stretch a few times a year was like Christmas to me.

He night weaned in exactly one night with no crying (I just covered up in a long-sleeved, high necked shirt. He fussed for a minute or two and then just gave up) and slept 11 hours straight by night 2.

We went from frequent wakings and a constant need to have my nipple in his mouth, to deep, straight-through sleep in 2 days.

 

DS2 is 5 months and a horrid night sleeper, but I find myself a lot more at ease about it all this time around, knowing that there IS a light at the end of the tunnel and it can (possibly, hopefully) be really easy.
 

post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 
That's a great story. It is nice to know that night weaning might help sleep so much and so quickly. We're probably not going to be ready to night wean for at least a year, but it is great to know that we might get great sleep then! Thanks!
post #11 of 24

DS was up every 1-2 hours for the first 14 months (with very occasional nights where he slept for 4-6 hours at a stretch).  Around 11 months he had a stretch of sleeping all night for a week or two and then we had travel and moved.  Knowing that he could sleep all night if the wind blew in the right direction, as it were, helped me to know that he was mostly waking up to nurse out of habit.  Once we felt settled in our new home at around 14 months we night weaned.  Night weaning involved having DW (the non-lactating mom in our house) respond to all night wakings...I'd nurse him if it was after 3am.  By night three he was sleeping through the night (7:30p-4:00a, then nursing and sleeping for another hour).  By a little over 20 months he was sleeping until at least 6am.  Now (28 months) he sleeps from 7:30p-6:30a (with variation an hour on either side of both times).  There was some crying in arms for the first couple of nights, but not much, and we all benefited from better sleep.

 

Oh, another thing that did help fairly early on...we switched from prefolds to microfiber to help his cloth diapered rump feel "dry" at night...this seemed to help eliminate the waking b/c his bum was cold/wet factor.  

post #12 of 24

we survived until 13m before we had a 'through the night' experience I *think* that the turning point for us was that after 12m we allowed mini-mr to have a duvet over him rather than one of those baby sleeping bags, although I cant be sure that was the trigger.   6 months later and we are woken up only maybe 1-2 nights a week! it seemed to take forever, but hang in there mamma! I assumed before that when the first 'through the night' happened that BAM we would do the same every night, but for us it was (and still is) a gradual process x

post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thanks for those stories! I love the idea that our little guy could start sleeping more in just a few months! It's interesting to consider switching to non-cotton diapers or adding a thicker blanket. Thank you!
post #14 of 24
Oh yes, I was where you were. Every other baby at daycare, even though a few were nap fighters, all seemed to sleep through the night so quickly. And there I was with a 6 month old waking 4-5 times a night, a 9 month old waking 3-4 times a night, a 12 month old waking 2-3 times a night, and 15 month old waking 1-2 times a night, etc. It took a long time, but she does sleep through the night now and started doing it consistently ~21 months, only occasionally waking because of a bad dream or something similar. She's even gotten better about fighting going to sleep in the last couple months (she'll be 3 in November). I don't have any advice on how to get a baby to get there faster, everything we tried was futile unfortunately, just giving in and going with the flow worked best for me. I will too say that night-weaning was a breeze for us too, but it also had little relation to her sleep. Sure, she nursed every-time she woke until weaned, but she wasn't waking to because of hunger after 6-9 months or so, she was just a light sleeper I think who wanted/needed someone to help her back to sleep.

Just know it does get better and your baby will sleep through the night eventually. And every step closer helps immensely. I remember being so thrilled when she was consistently waking up only twice a night, how nice it was to get a few good chunks of sleep! I felt human again! I remember telling the caregivers at daycare and they looked at me like I was nuts since she was so old for that. I remember when she was only waking once a night, oh sweet sweet sleep, then when she finally was sleeping through the night, wow I could stay up late again some nights finally and not be wrecked for days.

But yes, we have BTDT for sure and I know how much it helps to know that you aren't the only one and that there is an end somewhere to it. I know without these and other forums, I would have been so lost with all the other "perfect sleepers" that I was surrounded by.
post #15 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Quinalla. It's very encouraging to hear your story. It does seem like almost every baby I know sleeps through the night (and has for months), while our little guy is still up over and over. It's good to hear that eventually they do sleep.
post #16 of 24

Once she hit 12 months it was a major turning point in the sleep department! Before that it was really back and forth, but mostly she'd wake me up at least every 2 hours the entire night, and for several months I had to go to bed at the same time as her or there was no other way to get her to sleep. The moment I moved to try and sneak out of bed she would wake up, and it was super frustrating. At 10 months we were still co-sleeping, but I night weaned which was a little hard but actually lead to both of us getting better sleep. But around that time she started thrashing around a bunch at night, and crawling out of the bed (we were only about a foot off the floor, but waking up to baby hitting the floor isn't pleasant for anyone). 

 

So I started transitioning her to nap in her crib which took a lot of different tactics, and a bit of crying (not cry it out though). Then started putting her in her crib for the first part of the night, and bringing her to bed later at night when she woke up. When she was just about a year old and after she was sleeping well in her crib, it got moved into her own room and now she is SUCH a good sleeper! I'm amazed! For weeks it was like "OMG, you mean I just put her down and she just goes to sleep?!?!?!" Sometimes she wakes up once or twice in the night and one of us will go in and pick her up, maybe cuddle/rock/sing to her a little bit and lay her back down and she goes right back to sleep. Most of the time she sleeps straight through from 8pm to 8am. 

 

Sleep was so difficult for the first year, but it will improve sooner or later! For us the big transition was her being in her own room, which we weren't ready to do when she was younger, but by 12 months she was a lot more secure and then all of us started to get some actual sleep. 

post #17 of 24
Thread Starter 
Hi Oread! Welcome to MDC! Thanks for sharing your story. It's great to hear that sleep got so much better for you around a year!
post #18 of 24

Yep! 

 

My son woke every 3 hours all night from birth to 10 months.  At 11 months, he started waking once per night (coinciding with when he started getting more mobile).  A week ago (at age 11 months and 3 weeks) he started sleeping through the night.  I never did any sleep training or night weaning or anything.  It just happened.

 

This blog saved my life: http://www.askmoxie.org/2011/06/qa-12-month-old-not-sleeping-through-the-night.html

post #19 of 24
Thread Starter 
That's very encouraging. Thank you!

Thank you also for that blog post. I love it. Lots of great stories there. Thanks!
post #20 of 24

DD woke 1-2 times a night from around 14 months to 24 months. On her own, she started sleeping through the night at 2. I weaned her about 4 months later because she was only nursing 1-2 a day and my milk had dried up from pregnancy.

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