My DS will be 8 months this Tuesday and DH and I are struggling with bedtime. DS is an extraordinarily happy kid during the day, and goes down for naps with very little fuss. Once nighttime comes around and it is time for bed, it is like I have an entirely different child. He screams as soon as he feels sleep coming on, will not take a pacifier, and if I can get him to take the paci (either by nursing him and switching to the bink once he is no longer eating, or by using a bottle with water to trigger his swallow reflex) he will only sleep in my arms and cries when we try and put him in his crib.
This has led us to unintentional co-sleeping, which I wouldn't mind if we had something larger than a queen size bed, and our large retriever didn't sleep with us as well. Most nights DH ends up in the spare bedroom, and I end up exhausted since DS is not sleeping through the night. It's also terrifying when I wake up and can't remember moving him from the crib to my bed! I often find myself nursing him half aleeep- I don't think he is hungry, just can't get himself back to sleep on his own, but it is definitely interfering with my ability to function during the day!
I guess I just want to know if there is anything I can do to help him not fight sleep so much, and work on getting him to self soothe at night. I know that it will get better at some point, but right now this is taking its toll on myself and DH physically, emotionally, and affecting how we relate to one another.
We have tried bedtime routines involving bath time, but that just seems to wake him up. I work alternating hours and DH does not come home until late at night since he goes to school in the city, so I don't even know if a bedtime routine will be a good idea if we can't keep to it, but I'm open to anything! DH is on break from school right now, so this would be an optimal time to try something that needs consistency since he is home every night. We have heard of a baby sleep aid, called triple complex something or other, but I don't know if that's the route we need to take.
I'm going in circles- in this post and real life! Help!