I am currently co-sleeping with my 7.5month old daughter but she doesn't sleep more than 2 hours straight. - Mothering Forums
Co-sleeping and the Family Bed > I am currently co-sleeping with my 7.5month old daughter but she doesn't sleep more than 2 hours straight.
Maggyk's Avatar Maggyk 11:49 AM 03-21-2014

I currently co-sleep with my 7.5 month old daughter.  We started this because at around 5 months or so she started waking every hour and I got no sleep so into bed with mom she went.  She still doesn't give me that magical 5 hour stretch of solid sleep and I don't know why.  I know she is capable of it because she did it for a week back when she was about 4 months old.  Usually we get into bed (6-7pm), I rub her legs if she seems a little unsettled and she nurses on one side, starts falling asleep and I switch her to the other side at which point we lay down.  She'll fall asleep and I just stay there with her because I know within the hour, she will stir again, looking for me (or my breast I should say).  Sometimes I can rub her back and just whisper "It's time for sleep" and she will continue sleeping but other times, it's a no-go.  I would love to know what I am doing wrong here?  She also wakes anywhere from 5-5:40am.  I know this is because I get up at 5am to get ready for work.  If I didn't get up then, she would sleep in much longer so I feel like she needs more sleep.  She has started solids (pureed foods) and still gets breastmilk/formula for her meals.  I believe she is not hungry when she wakes through the night because she will do the quick sucking motion or only nurse for a minute or two.  I've read "No Cry Sleep Solution" but I didn't find it helpful or maybe I didn't try hard enough.  Guess I just want to hear what other mothers have tried.  I also think I want to move her to her own bed.  I believe she would sleep much better there too.  Any suggestions?

BushMama83's Avatar BushMama83 12:56 PM 03-21-2014
You mentioned that you have to get up for work. Do you work outside of the home? When did you start back? I wonder if her night waking is a way to compensate for missing you in the daytime?

Is she getting teeth? Having a growth spurt? These could also be reasons for waking more frequently at night. I think babies change their sleep patterns so often, and that what you're experiencing with your LO is totally normal. I don't have any ideas for helping her to sleep a longer stretch though. If you're worried you might be disturbing her, what about a side car crib or mattress on the floor next to you? Then she's still close enough to nurse at night without you having to get out of bed, but with enough distance to not feel you getting up in the morning or through the night.

Also wanted to say that my 2 and a half year old has always been an early riser. Anywhere from 5-7 am. I never imagined that 7 am would feel like sleeping in! I think that is also quite normal for little ones.

Hopefully someone else can offer advice on transitioning baby to her own bed!
MichelleZB's Avatar MichelleZB 04:06 AM 03-22-2014

I think my 7-month-old was still for sure waking every 2 hours or so. If there's something you can do about it, that's news to me. The best thing I tried was "wait it out".

sageowl's Avatar sageowl 10:49 PM 03-22-2014
DS 2 has pretty much always woken up every 2-3 hours...so I feel ya. It sucks.
tiqa's Avatar tiqa 03:37 PM 03-23-2014

All I can add to this is that it's normal.


Annoying to mamas ;) but normal.

Maggyk's Avatar Maggyk 02:26 PM 03-30-2014
I do work outside the home. I started in November so I don't know what's going on. I don't think she is a natural early riser. For instance, weekends if I nurse her around 4 or 5 am, she will sleep until 640-650 am. If I nurse her around 4 during the week, she will fall asleep but once I get up, she will inevitably wake shortly after me leaving the room. I've tried wrapping my pj top around a pillow for her but it doesn't fool her. I do want her to eventually sleep in her own crib in her own room but right now just trying to conquer naps in her crib & sleeping a little more solidly throughout the night. I might have my husband but a crib up against our bed with the front off so she will have her own sleeping space as one responder suggested. I guess I'm just tired & feeling like a complete failure.
jjmo's Avatar jjmo 02:57 AM 03-31-2014
I also have a 7 month old in the family bed who nurses every 1-2 hours. So glad to see I'm not the only one! It looks like it's more common than I thought, so where I was thinking of doing some night weaning now I feel I can relax and enjoy my time with him. This won't last forever.
Maggyk's Avatar Maggyk 05:19 AM 03-31-2014
Yes, it does seem more common than books or even doctors will lead you to believe. I think I need to relax as well & work on getting the sidecar crib setup so she has her undisturbed sleeping space but will still be able to nurse when she is hungry or thirsty.
Maggyk's Avatar Maggyk 03:16 PM 05-06-2014

Just giving an update on this.  My DD is now a little over 9 months old and (I'm afraid to type this), she has been giving me a good 6-7 hours of straight sleep!  I may have just jinxed myself but oh well.  It also coincides with us trying to transition her to her crib for naps. Could all be coincidence but could be that she is learning to just sleep or that momma is there overnight & she doesn't need to check every 2-3 hours....lol!

ao411's Avatar ao411 07:22 PM 05-14-2014
MaggyK I have an every 1-2 hour waked as well, only he wakes sometimes to nurse, sometimes to pacify but always to get closer (sleeping ON me!) I'm exhausted & sore every morning.. I sure hope it gets better soon though I read some stories of it only eating worse as they get more mobile! My question is how did you transition to naps in the crib? I've tried twice (I still hold DS for 3 naps a day! I literally get nothing done. I've tried wearing him but it lasts about 20-30 mins and then he wakes up crabby!) but can't tolerate the cries/fear in his eyes when he wakes up alone. I fear it's my fault he relies on me so much so who am I to change it on him now? But I could use a little break once in awhile, so could my body, he's getting big! I'm so glad things are going better for you!!
Maggyk's Avatar Maggyk 07:06 AM 05-15-2014

Ao411, transitioning was not easy but she was outgrowing her swing & it was not safe.  She was familiar with her crib because we would have playtime in there everyday for a few minutes.  So basically, I started with the first nap of the day which is always the easiest nap.  One Saturday, I took her into her nursery, turned on her white noise machine, turned off the lights & nursed her.  She fell asleep in my arms and as I was moving her to the crib she woke up but I still placed her in the crib.  I told her it was naptime, that I loved her and that I would be back then I left the room.  She protested (cried with no tears) for at most 4 minutes (seemed like forever) and then proceeded to sleep for about 1.5 hours.  The second nap was about the same with a little more crying (again no tears, just more mad than anything).  The next day I decided I would stay with her until she fell asleep in her crib.  I did this more for myself than for her.  I figured if I was there she wouldn't feel alone or scared or whatever.  Well, 50 minutes later she finally fell asleep.  She did sleep for over an hour but it took her 50 minutes to settle down with me in the room.  So for my little girl, it is better for me not to be in the room.  Now when I put her down for her first nap, she usually just wakes up a little, kind of moans and rolls to her side and is asleep before I have even left the room.  As soon as she hears me say "It's naptime", I get the little protest whine but once drowsy and in her crib, sleep takes over.  If she wakes up before an hour has passed, we give her time to resettle herself which she usually does in a few minutes but if not, we go in, pick her up, calm her down but place her back in the crib to finish the nap.  It was recommended to work only on the first nap of the day but I did all naps like this and if the naps weren't great, then I know she needs to get to bed earlier that night.  Right now we have taken a few steps backwards only because she is teething (her top two incisors are coming in).  Motrin really helps but she is still uncomfortable.  Mind you, I didn't do this all on my own.  I visited babysleepsite.com and actually paid for a sleep plan but they have alot of good ideas on their site.  I am like you and can't stand to hear my baby cry but when I watch her on the monitor, I know she is ok and she is just upset that she is awake (i've read that that is why babies wake up crying...they're still tired and want to be sleeping).  I watch her and make sure she doesn't get too upset.  If I see she is sitting up & crying with no signs that she calm herself down, then I will go and pick her up and just calm her down, get her drowsy again and back in the crib she goes.  I really believe that it is because she is learning to settle herself back to sleep during naps that I was getting 6-7 hours of straight sleep.  I should also mention that I have noticed that if she is too hot, she wakes up a lot more during the night or if she didn't eat that well during the day.  So now no more footie pjs for her.  She sleeps in a long sleeve t-shirt and some leggings and if she didn't eat that well that day then I know to make sure she nurses really well before going to sleep.  We also attached a crib with the side rail removed to our bed (I saw a diy co-sleeper on pinterest) and I will put her on that sleep space and nurse her laying down so when she drifts off to sleep, she is on her own sleep space and I can move freely & stretch out a bit.  Eventually she will end up on our mattress because I have to nurse on the other side but I get a break while she is on the crib mattress.  I hope some of this helped.  If I can answer any other questions, I will be more than happy to give you my experience.  Just know that you are not alone and it will get better.  I never thought it would get better but it did....sloooowly but we're getting there.