Dicipline 7 mo. old - Let him cry? - Mothering Forums

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Old 05-27-2005, 02:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't know what to do about my 7 mo. old crying durring the day. He is totally fine as long as you give him 100% of your attention. I will put him down in his play pen and he will start screeming before he touches the floor. He wants me to hold him and play with him all day and won't let me put him down to even go to the bathroom, he is fine when he is outside of the play pen but in it he is histerical. The Dr said it is a power play and to let him cry but we don't know how long you should let him cry or even if we should let him cry. He has become extreemly clingy since we started letting him "cry it out". Any advice???
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Old 05-27-2005, 02:35 PM
 
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IMHO, babies who are not yet walking are not meant to be put down. They cry because they are biologically driven to have their *need* to be held met. And yes, it is a need. There are 3 reasons for this need -- that I can think off hand. 1) To keep them safe at all times. 2) To help them build a base of complete security and confidence upon which to grow and develop for the rest of their lives. 3) So that they can watch life happening around them from a clear vantage point -- and learn everything they can from observing what people do and how they do it -- being a part of everything from the arms of a caregiver.

Don't put him down until he's ready. Use a sling if you need to. Learn to go about your business with one arm. He won't be spoiled. He'll be secure, and safe, and brilliantly intelligent!
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Old 05-27-2005, 02:39 PM
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I don't agree with letting a child "cry it out"....I feel it is completely ineffective, upsetting to both the child and the parent, does not accomplish anything other than to teach the baby/child that their needs won't be met by the people who are supposed to love them the most... and I feel that frankly, it makes children cry even more--- and when they DO stop crying... they are either so tired out, or they have finally given up.

Do you want that for your child?

Of course not, (I would hope).

This doctor that says a 7 month old BABY... see that... B A B Y ... is doing it as a "power play" is seriously disturbed in my humble opinion... cmon, the kid probably just learned to sit up unnassisted and before that barely mastered head control and you mean to tell me he is devising careful schemes to manipulate you and to control you...what is next...hostile world take over?

I am just illustrating that this is riduculous for your doctor to say... please DO NOT believe that. I feel that whenever a child is crying... ESPECIALLY "hysterically" (as you put it) they are expressing a need...and that need should be met... even if that need is *only* that the playpen makes him feel lonely/scared/upset...

Maybe there is something else that would contain him so you don't have to hold him all the time (like maybe fence in a bigger area?) ... or have you considered a sling? That way you can carry him hands free and not have to worry about it... Maybe try an excersaucer with lots of toys attached.. babies seem to love those....

Crap, I am not even for TV at all, but if a 30 minute baby einstein video can holdhis attention while you go to the bathroom or shower (provided he is safely contained and can't crawl off) ...would be an option to me before crying would be (even though again, I am not an advocate of TV for babies)...

I am just saying, crying it out is VERY VERY detremental to babies and children... imagine if someone left you to cry when you needed or wanted something...even if it was just a hug? You would feel like crap...

Quote:
He has become extreemly clingy since we started letting him "cry it out".
You are already seeing repurcussions of this. Stop doing it. This is not "discipline". It is plain wrong and part of you knows that or you wouldn't have posted.

Good luck to you.
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Old 05-27-2005, 02:41 PM
 
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I am no expert but my suggestions would be to stop the behaviors that seem to make him so upset, don' let him cry it out. I've heard its extremely common for babes to become very clingy if they are left to CIO. You'll probably get lots more advice from more experienced moms about this. When my son was small I would just take him to the bathroom with me. I kept a clean blanket handy and would sit him on it when I had to use the bathroom. This is my first babe and I learned the hard way that the pack n play is definately could have lived without. Good luck to you
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Old 05-27-2005, 02:47 PM
 
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Are you a SAHM and your partner working? Do you have family or friends who can come over a few days a week and spend some time holding him and playing with him and/or help around the house? Does he nap alone or do you have to hold him for naps? Do you sling? Sometimes a few days of slinging almost constantly kinda "resets" my daughter if she's been super cranky and clingy, and she starts to sleep better and get more cheerful.

That doctor is wrong, wrong, wrong. A baby can't be manipulative or do power struggles. Your instincts are telling you the truth, trust your mama instinct! It's a superpower. :LOL

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Old 05-27-2005, 02:50 PM
 
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You have received very good advice already. All I want to add is that, in the words of Jan Hunt, all a baby needs to learn right now is trust. Your child needs to learn first and foremost that you will be there to comfort and love him. He does not need to be 'disciplined.' He needs to understand that you will be there to hold him and love him no matter what. That trust and security is the foundation of your relationship. Without it, discipline cannot occur.

Listen to your heart. If you know it feels wrong, then it is wrong.
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Old 05-27-2005, 02:53 PM
 
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What about putting baby on the floor instead of in a playpen? At 7 months she should be crawling or learning to, so I'd encourage her to explore how much fun it is. Get down on the floor with her. Make sure there are lots of interesting things for her to "find" while she's learning to be more mobile. They don't have to be toys, they could be anything like a spoon or whatever.

I don't think this is a "power" thing at all, we're talking about a baby here. They cry when they are wanting/needing something they aren't getting and I think when a baby cries when they're in a playpen it's probably...because they're in a playpen, and who would want to be in one of those anyway? My DS had one of those jumping things that attached to a doorway...can't remember what they're called but my babe really loved it, they're in a harness and bounce themselves up and down with their feet that might be a good investment. And a sling too if you don't have one.
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Old 05-27-2005, 02:53 PM
 
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My children thought cribs and playpens were jail. People gave them to us when my oldest was born. I could never use them for that purpose. We put toys in the playp[en when we needed to vacuum the floor. The crib held clean clothes. :LOL As a bitty thing my oldest told me that cribs and playpens were jail by screaming if we put her in one. So I didn't do it. Now she is a happy 10yo girl who everyday comes to hug me and tell me that she loves me. Her need to touch and be touched is still very strong. I honor that even though I am not a touch person.
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Old 05-27-2005, 02:57 PM
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Below are two links to articles that do a good job explaining how important it is to respond to your baby when he is crying. Have you read Dr.Sears' Baby Book, by chance? His Fussy Baby book might be enormously helpful too. There are lots of other great Attachment Parenting books, resources, articles etc. we can direct you to if you'd like more information. And just so you know, I do understand how hard it is to manage a high needs baby and one who prefers to be held most of the time. Our baby was colicky in the beginning and continued to be high needs -- I couldn't even put her down for a nap for the first six months. She is now two and she insists on being down, playing independently much of the time. I'm so glad she feels secure and safe and that she has learned to trust that her parents will meet all her needs. There is no greater gift you can give to your child. Oh, and I'm appalled (but not surprised) that your doctor suggested that your baby is pulling a power play. He is merely expressing a need (one that he is hardwired to expect will be met -- to remain close to his caregiver) in the only way he can.

http://www.naturalchild.com/advice/q09.html

http://www.naturalchild.com/guest/li...n_palmer2.html
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Old 05-27-2005, 03:37 PM
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get a sling, that way you can do all your stuff while baby gets his needs met.
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Old 05-27-2005, 03:44 PM
 
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I've never met a baby who liked a playpen. Now is a good time to really childproof at least one room in the house for the baby to crawl around and explore in. If you to to the bathroom, bring the baby with you and just close the door so he can't crawl out. It's normal and natural for a baby to want attention all day.

DD1 7/13/05 DD2 9/20/10
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Old 05-27-2005, 05:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My child is very active and has been crawling for over a mo. now. He has been pulling him self up to stand for over a mo. and is almost walking. He does not want to be held any otherway but facing front and you must use 2 hands to hold him (20lbs 29" long). He has every toy that can amuse a child at this age. We have 2 jumpers, a walker, a pack and play, 2 strollers, 2 slings - you name it he has it and he wants nothing to do with any of it. I have child proofed the house and I let him wander - he is fine when he is not in his play pen (8'x8'). He is a very determinded child and does throw temper tantrums i.e. when his bottle doesn't come fast enough or if he wants to get the dog and we won't let him. This is why I am torn about letting him cry or not. I do not have any friends or family to help and my husband works all day so its just me and the baby. I do appreciate all of the advice but to no avail I have tried just about everything and I was hoping that someone might have a magic solution. None of this behavior started till after he was in swimming lessons and his teeth started to really bother him.
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Old 05-27-2005, 05:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by westbrook
He is a very determinded child and does throw temper tantrums i.e. when his bottle doesn't come fast enough or if he wants to get the dog and we won't let him.
That sounds pretty normal. All of my children have been like that, they don't understand why they have to wait to eat, and why they can't play with the dog. Also, why put him in the playpen if he does fine out of it and your house is childproofed? That doesn't make any sense to me.
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Old 05-27-2005, 05:09 PM
 
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There is no magic solution. But a measure of resignation was helpful to me at that stage. Sometimes you just have to accept that this is how it goes. I'll tell you what -- eventually they get to be 8 or 9 and spend all their time playing with friends or reading in bed... and you sort of miss those early months and years of snuggling and closeness!

Its good you let him roam the house and explore. He needs that.

I wonder he would enjoy riding in a backpack? I used one with my oldest at that age when I was doing housework. He loved it. I had to keep my hair pulled up firmly so he wouldn't pull at it though.

I don't think its a temper tantrum when he cries for a bottle, or expressions frustration at not getting what he wants. After all -- he has no other way to express his feelings than to cry. And the intensity of his cry communicates the measure of his feelings. You don't want him to stifle those feelings, do you? When he is older he will learn to "use words." But for now, his ability to communicate is limited. He don't have to give in or fix every problem, but being sympathetic, comforting and understanding will help him develop.
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Old 05-27-2005, 06:29 PM
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Yes, it's hard -- I hear your frustration and exasperation. My dd has had an absolutely hellish time with teething and was very, very, very clingy and needy during those times (which seemed like almost all of the time for nearly two years). I knew parenting was going to be hard, but I have to say I was unprepared for how hard. The big feelings of a baby and the means by which they express those feelings (crying, whining, screaming, flailing etc) can be very unsettling and disturbing.

Here are some things that helped us: I just really tried to remain compassionate, realizing that she was truly hurting -- doing this really helped shift my perspective -- and then I comforted her the best I could. When my DH came home, I took time for myself -- that went a long way in restoring me and just looking forward to that break could help me get through some rough patches. I napped or rested when she did. I let go of my need for a clean house. Or clean hair. :LOL I surrounded myself with other mamas and enjoyed activities outside of the house (that always seemed to distract dd and she'd generally do better when out playing) and it also helped me feel less isolated and alone in the big job of parenting ( I hear you don't have friends around. Where you can meet up with other mamas? A library story time? A community rec center? The playground?). I breathed. Whenever I felt really fed up, I would really focus on being grateful -- I would think of people who had lost a child or who were not able to have a child. Practicing gratefulness is powerful stuff (though I don't do it nearly enough, I feel so much better when I do). It also helped to think how fast this was all going to go (though it doesn't seem it at the time) and how soon I wouldn't have a little baby to hold and cuddle and keep close. Sometimes I'd call my dh or a friend to cry and whine (we have big feelings too that need expression). I pulled out the bubbles and watched my fussy baby become instantly calm and enchanted (temporarily at least). I danced with her to my favorite music (calming both of us) -- I highly recommend Jack Johnson's On and On). I got into the bath tub with her -- then we could both get clean and have a good half hour or more of fuss free entertainment.

Oh, and know that he won't always be this way -- teething, developmental spurts, coming down with an illness, separation anxiety are some things that can cause a lot of neediness...it will pass. Well, that's all I have for now. Good luck.

Nicole
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Old 05-27-2005, 06:35 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bri276
Now is a good time to really childproof at least one room in the house for the baby to crawl around and explore in. If you to to the bathroom, bring the baby with you and just close the door so he can't crawl out. It's normal and natural for a baby to want attention all day.
yes!

as a btdt, my walking baby wants to be down 90% of the time now. he's just 11 months.
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Old 05-27-2005, 06:40 PM
 
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There is no magic cure - I agree with what OP said. He needs to be held, plain and simple. DS is 6 months old and the same way. He's also crawling around too... holding him all the time will not hurt him in anyway. It will help build security for him until he becomes more independent. He loves you so much that he wants you to hold him a lot.

On a side note - I see you are a newer member. Check out that user agreement to see what this board is all about - especially if you are new to AP/NFL. You'll learn a lot. Your child is completely normal. No worries.

Check out the finding your tribe areas to find other AP moms in your area...

Mothering's Statement of Purpose:
http://www.mothering.com/mdc/web_sta...ofpurpose.html

User Agreement:
http://www.mothering.com/mdc/mdc_useragreement.html

Both are loaded with great information.

Good luck!

Dani, wife to Cullen - 9/2002, mom to CJ 11/2004, Billy 12/2007 and Nora 7/2009
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Old 05-27-2005, 06:49 PM
 
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I agree that you need to ditch the playpen.
I don't think of them as jails, but if there is no need, then why use it?

Put him down on the floor. Let him safely explore.
I don't think "power play" is the right term. Expressing his opinion is a better phrase.
He is saying "Mom, I don't like this"

We made on cupboard a child safe one in our kitchen. We redirect our youngest there to play so I can work in the kitchen. She loves it. It worked for my older one too.

Now sometimes, you have to say no -for example, for the dog. Let it go.. You can redirect his attention, but just a gentle, "Doggie can't play. Let's look at this toy!"

The same with the bottle... my Nazgul, I mean Moo will scream if her bottle isn't there when she wants it. I tell her it is coming and just keep telling her this. I comfort her, but that's not really a power play, she just wants it and she can only scream to tell me that...


There is no magic solution... sorry, but instead of leaving him to cry you can comfort him when you have to put him in the situation of crying....
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Old 05-27-2005, 07:02 PM
 
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Nic's last post had some good advice. If you read anything, I hope you'll read hers.

Teething time can really be trying, for sure. Everytime my daughter seems to go nuts for a few days, it was usually teething.

It's tough, this mothering stuff. Nobody is judging you for wanting to get stuff done. We all do. Right now your baby needs you to be there for him. Let me echo others: your doctor is wrong. Babies do not have the ability to manipulate. He can't even regulate his own feelings yet, much less try to get control of yours.

Have you ever tried something like the Ergo or other kind of back carrier? You can possibly get stuff done then and he can be in close contact with you. Babies may need to have an adult's body help them to discharge energy, and they need close contact to do that. Do you feel like he gets enough time outside? Try taking a daily walk, it will be great for both of you.

Tell us more about your living situation. Stay around. There are mamas who want to support you. Do you have any little indulgences you can do for yourself for maybe 5 minutes a day? Like having a cup of tea and deep breathing, or have a little square of chocolate. You have to mother yourself too. Sometimes I feel lonely and stressed out, it sounds like you may too. Let people know about it here. There are wonderful people here, and they know what it's like.

Finally, please read this article if you get a chance. It talks about how crying it out may actually damage the brain. Let me know if you want more articles, I would have to look them up. http://houseofstrauss.co.uk/modules/....php?storyid=4
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Old 05-27-2005, 07:08 PM
 
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I wanted to second Mamaduck's backpack suggestion...my ds just started full-out crawling and pulling up over the last two weeks (7.5 months old) and it has been a rough two weeks for me as I transition to having a more mobile baby. He goes to work with me. I have started using the backpack more than the sling, and he loves it. He's asleep in it right now as a matter of fact!
Good luck. And DEFINITELY follow your instincts! A 7 month old cannot manipulate...he's just letting you know that he wants/needs to be near you.

Stephanie
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Old 05-28-2005, 03:21 AM
 
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the wanting to only be front facing
do your slings not allow for this? I had a sling that had several positions and I didn't need to hold the munchkins front facing and they were 20lbs plus so maybe you need to find a different sling or like the other mamas suggested a back pack type carrier

and the sentence about how none of it started until after swimming lessons and his teeth started bothering him. Is it possible he may swimmers ear? That hurts and on top of teeth would really hurt and could explain the some of the constant crying. It might not hurt to check into it. My dd had it when she was younger and it hurt her a lot.

and the temper tantrum thing? No. 7 month olds do not have temper tantrums ( my kids are 18, 12, 8 and 7 now one of them is capable of a tantrum! LOL) the 7 month old is not crying because the bottle isn't fast enough he is crying because he is hungry. He or she doesn't understand that mom has to warm up breastmilk or mix formula. The crying is the way he or she has to express to mama that " I am hungry/cold/wet/overstimulated/tired/hurt"
He or she doesn't understand yet that doggy is off limits and won't until a little older

Also it sounds like you are in pretty much isolation with no friends and no support system. Sometimes things seem more intense because of that

the every toy to amuse a child that age. that might be a problem too he may be overstimulated by that many playthings. Try limiting it to just a few like three or four and rotating them unless he has one that has an intense special attachment

There is no magical solution in parenting. Trust me when I say that as a parent of an 18 yr hormonal in puppy love teen.. :LOL

I am so glad you came here though. I think if you take some time to look around you might find some more of what you need/are looking for
and we have some mammas on this board that have tons of helpful information and support

one of mine was very high needs and spent a lot of time in the sling when not on the floor and he is VERY independent now so take heart mama!
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Old 05-28-2005, 11:08 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CerridwenLorelei
I am so glad you came here though. I think if you take some time to look around you might find some more of what you need/are looking for
and we have some mammas on this board that have tons of helpful information and support

one of mine was very high needs and spent a lot of time in the sling when not on the floor and he is VERY independent now so take heart mama!
:

I've gone through this too. MDC and other wise mamas have taught me that "This too shall pass", it's helped me to know that these frustrating stages won't last forever. (But there will probably always be a frustrating stage to deal with! :LOL )

                   
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Old 05-29-2005, 03:49 AM
 
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Originally Posted by westbrook
I don't know what to do about my 7 mo. old crying durring the day. He is totally fine as long as you give him 100% of your attention. I will put him down in his play pen and he will start screeming before he touches the floor. He wants me to hold him and play with him all day and won't let me put him down to even go to the bathroom, he is fine when he is outside of the play pen but in it he is histerical. The Dr said it is a power play and to let him cry but we don't know how long you should let him cry or even if we should let him cry. He has become extreemly clingy since we started letting him "cry it out". Any advice???
My mother's one real regret about how she raised me was listening to morons who told her to just put me down and let me cry (she did pick me up, she just didn't do it as soon as she wanted to). She has no idea if my little brother was also a baby who needed to be held all the time, because she *did* hold him all the time. She even learned to shoot free throws one-handed when she took a basketball class while he was 9-months old.

I daresay the OP's already heard this a thousand times but, : would be my solution.
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Old 05-29-2005, 07:58 AM
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This sounds like my life when dd was this age. I finally got Dr. Sears Fussy Baby book. No magic solutions but it made me feel better about doing the things that needed to be done to keep dd (and me, by default) happy and gave me words to use when family questioned what I was doing. Dd is now a happy, joyful, rambunctious, energetic, smart, loving 2.5 year old and I don't for one minute regret having to hold her as much as I did. By the way, the one thing that gave me some peace was to take her for a walk daily. She loves being outside (we still do this, only she walks) and it gave me some nice, quiet time to do something other than sit around the house and hold her.

Also, I finally sold my pack n play for 1/2 what I paid for it. It was never being used.
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Old 05-29-2005, 12:39 PM
 
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My DS was very much like yours at that age. His teeth really bothered him and he was starting to experience serious mama separation anxiety. I can't tell you how many people told me to just put him down and let him cry. I decided to ignore them because a) it didn't work and b) it made both DS and I more angry and upset with one another.

I surrended to his need to be parented in-arms at that time. I made myself a Mei Tai, a great style of back carrier that keep baby very close to your body and lets him look over your shoulder while you have both hands free to take care of chores, read a book, etc. You can go to www.thebabywearer.com or www.mamatoto.org to learn more about various carriers that will help you parent your DS in-arms while he needs it.

I also learned to let go of chores and just be with DS when he was that age. He seemed to really need me to be with him because he was teething and learning so many new things (crawling, climbing, standing) at that age and it was exciting and overwhelming for him at the same time.

Please be assured that by meeting your son's needs right away is GOOD for him, contrary to what many mainstream caregivers and parents will tell you. Listen to your instincts and what your baby is telling you. He's saying "Mama, I really need to be with your right now"... I know it can be so frustrating when you just want five minutes to pee already ;-) but I used to remind myself that some day he'd be telling me that he didn't want anything to do with me and to try to enjoy his wanting me close for now.

(((hugs))) and please stay here and read and participate. You'll get lots of support and ideas for coping.
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Old 05-29-2005, 11:12 PM
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Ds was like this at around the same age. Right when he learned how to sit on his own. It's like all of a sudden he saw the world and that was it. He also got very vocal at this time and pretty demanding. It is a hard stage. Basically you just need to wait it out. Babies were not meant to be left alone. A baby has a very short attention span and it's tough to amuze them for a long period of time. I never used a playpen for anything but naps at a friends or the IL's house. Playpens are very confining and I know of very few babies who like being in them other than to nap. They are also detremental to their development. Your little guy needs to be exploring in his new world every waking moment. He needs to feel things and grab for stuff and look at stuff. He needs to do what he wants to do, and that's how he is going to connect his brain.

Take him with you into the bathroom. Have some toys he can play with when he's there with you. Just put him on the floor and let him do his thing while you do yours. Nap time is your friend. That is the only time you will get to get your chores done. I'm sorry, but that's just the way it is. As he gets older it will get easier, kind of, but for right now this is how babies are.

Letting a child CIO is not a solution for any problem. It will make things worst and a baby will only stop crying once he realizes his needs will never be met in that particular situation. Then the little trust he has built with you will be destroyed and you will have a whole host of other problems.

A baby at this age is not capable of manipulating you. His mind is not that advanced. There is truth to the saying that babies can not be spoiled before the age of 1. Even after that it's pretty hard to spoil a baby.
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Old 05-29-2005, 11:22 PM
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*puts on flame repellant suit*

Now, it is OKAY to put your child down for a breather. Seriously. If you feel like you are going absolutely batty, it is OKAY to put your child down to take a breather, weather he Cries or not. Sane mom = Happy healthy baby.

you are a PARENT not a Martyr. there are carrying devices to make parenting a baby that doesn't like being put down, easyer, but, Mom's need breathing space too.

Don't feel guilty if you gotta put him down for a little mommy time-out.
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Old 05-30-2005, 08:46 AM
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My daughter HATED play pens (and cribs) also. So I found other means for her to entertain herself.

Excersaucer, cool floor toys, etc. 7 months is an ackward age. It's still very young, give it a bit more time.
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Old 05-30-2005, 08:59 AM
 
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A POWER PLAY? No, impossible for a 7month old to be playing head games with you! I am the mom of a high needs toddler. As an infant (for his first 14 months I'd say) he needed his mama to hold him all the time. A sling is hte best option- do you have one? If not, get one! It'llmake your life so much easier. My ds hated to be confined so I couldn't use a sling and simply had to hold him for 23 1/2 hours a day (I HAD to put him down for like 15 minutes each day to bathe... but that's it... really. He even slept directly on top of me and I had to hold him when I was going to the bathroom! ugh. BUT... That said... he's 26months now and he is an angel baby. Still totally wild and crazy but very bright, independant, brave and happy. And I don't have to hold him all the time! LOL. 7 months is still a little baby. Just keep holding him and catchup on your life when he's older!
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Old 05-30-2005, 09:13 AM
 
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When I’m facing a challenging situation with my child I have to really take some time to sort out the issues. It helps me to have a clear idea of what my feelings are. It’s not clear to me what the main problems with this situation are.

Are you worried that you’re child is ‘playing’ you?
Do you need some time to get something done that you can’t do while holding your child?
Is it important that he be comfortable in the playpen for some reason?
Are you concerned that all these challenging behaviors are related?
Is somethign about this causign you to worry about the future?

If you give some thought into this and come back to post, I’m sure that you’ll get even more great advice. Welcome to MDC!

Mama to DD September 2001 and DD April 2011 *Winner for most typos* eat.gif
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