5 month old and Naps - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 02-08-2003, 03:08 AM - Thread Starter
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This isn't really a nightwaking situation, but it does have to do with sleeping...

My son, Noah, is about 5 1/2 months old. From the time he wakes up (about 8:30 am) until about 3:00 pm, he takes about 2 naps. These both last about 15 minutes maximum. He usually takes a nap about an hour after he wakes up, and then another one around 12-1:00. He used to take two-three naps around that time and they lasted atleast 45 minutes.

Anyway, I'm having a hard time getting him to sleep during the day. I NEVER force him to sleep, I don't like lay him down and expect him to fall asleep on his own or anything like that. I only try to help him fall asleep when he starts showing signs that he's very tired. So When he is tired, I usually sit in the rocking chair with him. He'll nurse for about a minute, and then I'll rock him until he falls asleep. It usually takes him about 25 minutes to get into a deep enough sleep to where I can get up and lay him down, and the whole time I'm rocking him he's like in a zone. Then when I lay him down on the couch, he immediatly wakes up and if I don't lay down and start nursing him right then, he starts to panic and cry. I don't ever refuse to nurse him. When I lay him down and he wakes up asking to nurse, I lay down and nurse him. He usually has a good long nursing at this time. Usually about 15 minutes of real nursing. Then when he falls asleep, I try to gently get up, but as soon as the boob's not in his mouth, he starts to panic again, so I lay down and he'll nurse for a few seconds and I'll try again after he's really asleep. Then when I finally am able to get up without him waking, I sit down at the desk and start to catch up on some school work, and 10 minutes later he's wide awake again!

So pretty much, it takes me about an hour at least to get him to sleep for a much needed nap for him, and much needed study time for me, only to end up with 10 minutes of napping. Like I said, it's not like I'm forcing him to sleep when he's not tired or anything like that. I am just beginning to feel like I need a better way of either getting him to sleep faster, or getting him to sleep longer. My mother is the sweetest person and is so supportive of what I decide and choose for me and Noah (we live with her), but when I told her about this, of course the only thing she had to say was her advice that I should put Noah to sleep in a crib, etc., etc. She doesn't think I'm bad for NOT using a crib, I just don't think she really understands wh I don't want to use one.

Anyway, I know this is really long, and I'm rambling, but I just need a little advice if someone can help, please.

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#2 of 3 Old 02-08-2003, 12:40 PM
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It is quite common for sensitive (high needs ) attached, bfed babies to not sleep well in the first year or so, unless in moms' arms. I had one out of my 3 kids who was like this. He would not nap unless I was holding him/lying next to him.

You probably expected to get lots of work done, while he took reliable 2 hour naps once or twice a day, alone in a bed? And now you see he is not that kind of child. Whether it is studying for school, housework, caring for older children, or paid work, moms with these kinds of children have to make adjustments.

Could you get your studying done while he naps, by wearing him in a sling? Or by bringing your book or notes or a laptop to bed, so you can work next to him? Or do your work while your partner, if you have one, cares for him? Or hiring a neighbor girl to entertain him in the house while you work?
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#3 of 3 Old 02-12-2003, 02:34 AM
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I just wanted you to know that my DD has exhibited this exact behaviour....but fortunately for us it doesn't happen very often, and rarely for more than one of her daily naps when it does. But, on those days, it's just what you say. If one of her naps goes that way, for the next nap I'll just resolve myself to holding her while she sleeps b/c she always sleeps better in my arms or my lap and having a nipple "at the ready" can stretch it even further. Or she'll nap while I"m out and about doing errands (in the car or the sling).

Have you tried taking your child for a walk? My DD almost always falls asleep in her sling when we go for a walk and will stay that way as long as I'm walking. I realise this doesn't give you a chance to do any work, but if you are concerned that your baby needs to nap more, it might help. You may just have to resolve yourself to the fact that naptimes are not for "getting things done". Save that for when someone else can watch baby. I know that the second I plan something to do during a nap, that nap lasts a few seconds, lol.

To get him to sleep sooner, have you had anybody else try to get him to sleep? My DH, for whatever reason, is an expert "baby put to sleeper". He just has his own style and it works really well. You might even try something new, you may stumble upon a better (faster) way. Unfortunately, the only way I know to make a nap last longer is to hold them while they nap.

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