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Seriously considering CIO!

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Good morning, MDCers. After nearly two months of horrible restless sleep, I am actually considering CIO.
Let me start off by saying I am an extremely light sleeper. Any sort of movement at all wakes me instantaneously. For the past two months, my 8 month old DS has been extremely restless at night. I mean, every half hour or so he's fussing, crying, wiggling, sitting up, whining, beating me in the face, scratching my breast... all night long. I've tried Tylenol and Motrin for teething, long lavender baths before bed, cutting out sugar and caffeine...
I co-slept with my DD, who's now three, until my second trimester with DS. I moved her to my DH's futon upstairs, and they sleep together now. The same thing happened with her: I regretted the family bed after battling PPD, bipolar, and serious sleep deprivation all rolled into one. NOT fun. Now it's starting all over again. I told DH that I wanted to get DS used to the crib from the beginning, and he convinced me that as a newborn, it was safer for DS to sleep with me. I know that's true, but I also know from experience that once it becomes habit, I'm S.O.L.! So now I can't even put him down when he's sleeping. If I move or twitch, he wakes up, and vice versa. And he cannot go to sleep without boob, or stay asleep without being latched on.
My PPD and bipolar are raging again from lack of sleep. HELP!!!!
post #2 of 11
Can your DH take over nighttime duty? No doubt your ds will still cry a lot for a few days, and miss nighttime nursing. But you need to survive this, right? And crying with Daddy through the night would be much better for him emotionally than crying alone through the night. Maybe you can leave the two of them in your bed, and you could sleep in another room with ear plugs or white noise? After a week or two, there is a pretty good chance your ds will start sleeping longer stretches (because he won't be nursing at night) and your dh will get more sleep than you WOULD have as the primary nighttime parents.
post #3 of 11
I agree with Mamaduck. Involve your husband. He sounds very supportive of co-sleeping, so get him to help, at least for half the night.
Also know that it will pass. Before you know it that sweet baby will be all grown up. I don't know what its like to deal with a needy baby plus ppd and bipolar, but I know a needy baby alone can drive you nuts.
But as a loving parent I am sure letting your baby cio would also give you some serious stress. Good luck to you.
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
But as a loving parent I am sure letting your baby cio would also give you some serious stress.
Ahh, yes, you've got me. That's probably why I feel so stressed. In my heart, I know there is nothing I can do. I guess that's why I came to Mothering.com instead of going to a mainstream parenting board to post this issue. Subconsciously I think I was asking for support and forgiveness for feeling this way, not a "CIO" how-to guide!:
Mamaduck, the issue with giving him to my DH is that he works a very long, hard blue collar job. While I just sit here whining, he is actually physically AND mentally busting his butt. Maybe we could try something this weekend, when he doesn't have to get up early the next day, and see how that goes?
Thanks for the quick responses. All other suggestions and input are greatly appreciated, as always.
post #5 of 11
Do you have a copy of the No Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeth Pantley? You might find some helpful tips in there which you help you avoid something you don't want to do. there's quite a bit in the book about both nightweaning and moving baby to their own bed and I found it really helpful when dd wasn't sleeping very well. I agree that CIO probably isn't the solution to your problem, and that getting your husband involved is a better idea. I think 8 months is too young to completely nightwean so maybe having your husband take over for half the night would be an option? You could get a nice stretch of sleep this way and he wouldn't be as exhausted in the morning. This way the nightweaning could also be less traumatic or eveybody involved. I hope things get better for you soon - you have an awful lot to deal with.
post #6 of 11
I am just writing to offer hugs and support. I am sorry you are having such a difficult time.

I got some advice from my midwife when ds was quite young and would wake up everytime I came near him. If I was in the room, he would wake up and only go back to sleep being latched...not eatting...
So she suggested that he probably just needed to suck and that an idea might be to give him a pacifier (something we didn't even buy) and get dad to sleep in a different room with him.
The pacifier worked and he didn't have to leave the room.

I didn't like the idea of a pacifier (probably why I had not bought one) but I soon realized that if mom is tired, irritable, not able to cope, that is NOT good for baby and in turn makes baby upset...so it's really a vicious circle.

I would really consider letting dh take baby and perhaps knowing that he is being cared for by someone who loves him as much as you do, will make it a bit better.

I hope you find a solution that works for you...I feel for you!

post #7 of 11
I know that alot here are against pacifiers as well, but my son neede one, at least at first. I remember he just wanted to suck, and not get food, in fact if I tried to nurse him at that time he would get upset, so he had a pacifier from newborn until he didn't want it anymore at about 9-10 months. So I think that they are fine, my son never wanted his when he was playing and awake, just after he had nursed to finish falling asleep. Also you should make some time for some stress relieving things during the day so that you can sleep better. It is a vicious cycle you are in, because you don't get any sleep, so you feel worse then you can't sleep again. I don't want to get preachy, but I would look into yoga, and eating well so that your emotional state gets better and then hopefully you will be able to sleep better. I know I recently joined a gym and being able to go take care of me for an hour a day has helped my mental status tremendously. I found one that had a nice childcare, and I don't feel guilty leaving him there because it is such a short period of time. Well hope things get better for you, take care of mom because that is the only way to take care of others
post #8 of 11
I second The No-Cry Sleep Solution book. I'm putting it to use now as DD is a frequent night waker and often likes to nurse all night long.

Have you considered a "sidecar" arrangement? You could put baby in an arm's reach cosleeper or on a matress next to yours (but far enough from your body that you both get some sleep). Some baby's do need there own space.

Anyway, good luck!
post #9 of 11
he works a very long, hard blue collar job. While I just sit here whining, he is actually physically AND mentally busting his butt
And what, exactly do you consider yourself to be doing? I don't mean that you should be waking him up, I do 90% of the nighttime parenting here, too. But don't sell yourself short. Trying to care for a waking baby night and day should be equivalent to a long, hard, blue collar job!!! And it sounds like you are busting your mental butt right now.

Are you napping, can you nap at all with the baby? Will your 3 year old lie down for 30 minutes or play quietly in the room while you and baby sleep? Can DH take both children on Saturday morning and let you have an hour of uninterrupted sleep? We do that a lot, and it makes a big difference for me to get an extra hour just once or twice a week.
I'm not offering suggestions to try to talk you out of using a cosleeper if that's what you need to do, but it sounds like you are wanting some other options. Whatever you choose, you are a loving, thoughtful mama and your baby knows that.
Take care,
post #10 of 11
I agree with the pacifier posts. My DS loves to suckle, so we got one of those Mam pacifiers. It's more like a mother's nipple, so I figured it'd be better for him than the others.

Good luck to you, you need some serious 's

And, I understand that your DH needs his sleep too, but you are working a full-time (if not more) job too. I think it's only fair for you to take turns, one night you have night duty, the next night he does.

post #11 of 11
Just throwing this out- could he be hungry? My dd is 28 mths and I night-weaned her about 6 wks ago, but she has been nursing at night again since last week due to a nasty virus. That is when I realized that the reason she was very restless at night- just like you described- she would want to switch sides, nurse, roll over, switch sides, sometimes cry out, etc. on and on and on and on...
I finally just stopped nursing her at night and soon after started working on less daytime nursings (which were, and now b/c of illness are very frequent). Subsequently, she started eating a lot mroe food during the day, and viola! Although she usually comes to bed with me around 12-2:00, she sleeps much more soundly since she is eating more. If we have a day when she doesn't eat as much for some reason, then she is back to the restless nights.
This may not be your problem, but thought I'd suggest it anyway- also, food would not be a cure-all for night nursing, but if hunger is the problem he should ad least sleep more soundly. HTH!
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