My almost 9 month-old is getting very difficult to co-sleep with. When I try to put her down for naps or bedtime, she just climbs all over me, crawls around, plays with whatever she can find, stands up on me, etc. She actually refuses to nurse lying down unless she is extremely exhausted. It makes naps and bedtime almost impossible. She used to do almost all her naps in her carrier, and when she's with my husband (about 1/2 the time) he still naps her in the carrier because she won't nap in the bed without nursing first. My problem is that it takes SO long for her to finally go to sleep, I feel like I literally have to wrestle her down first, and then I'm so exhausted by that point that I usually let her just fall asleep on top of me, so I wake up shortly after because my back is killing me (she's a BIG 9 months) and my slightest movement wakes her up, and then we're in this cycle again, and she wants to crawl/stand/play in the middle of the night. I tried putting her in a pack'n'play we have last night, but it just seemed like she felt she was being tortured so I gave up quickly. I don't know what to do. Will this pass? I am so exhausted, I am irritable and not very much fun for the rest of the day. I'm so desperate I'm almost considering CIO, but I know I couldn't actually do it -- even just putting her in the pack'n'play for a few minutes last night was more than I could bear. I feel like we're doing co-sleeping wrong, since it's obviously not working for me -- or her either, really, since I wake her up so frequently because I'm in pain because she's sleeping on top of me. She is an extremely light sleeper and every little thing wakes her up. So am I. Please help -- I am feeling very desperate. I thought the sleep thing would have gotten better by now.
Hi I don't know if I can be of much help but I discovered this when I started transitioning my now 9 month DD to naps in her crib (rather than the swing). I also cannot do CIO so I would put her in her crib and sit there with her until she fell asleep. She would definitely cry but I felt better about it because I was right there, soothing her and letting her know I was there and it was ok to fall asleep. Well it took about 50 minutes before she fell asleep with me there. However, whenever I put her in the crib and left, most of the time there was no crying or a little bit of fussing. Turns out having me there was a distraction for her! Maybe it's the same for your baby? Also, try reading "No Cry Sleep Solution" by Elizabeth Pantley. It gives a lot of options for "sleep training" that don't involve crying out. She suggests using alot of cue words like "it's sleepy time" or "time to sleep" etc. I feel your pain though...it's so tough because you want to be the cheeful, joyful mother but it's hard to be when you are so sleep deprived.
I feel like this is pretty typical. It's been a problem off and on for me for many months. Unfortunately, I sleep between TWO like that. My solution is to have LOTS of space. I share a king mattress next to a full mattress with my twins who are 14 months old (my husband works nights) and it does help to have all that room. Often, one twin winds up on the other bed. Sometimes I wake up to one snuggled on my legs and the other one playing on the floor. I've had to learn to accept the fact that they might get up to play, but hopefully won't tackle me. Or each other. I do think this phase passes. Or at least it comes and goes.
I'm not sure pack-n-plays are all that comfortable for babies - is getting a crib something that you'd be able to consider?