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#1 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 01:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We really don't know what to do anymore. Dd is 4.5 months now and sleeps terribly. I know this forum gets a lot of these posts, but we are seriously to the point where we have to do SOMETHING in order to get through another day. We have tried every non-CIO thing and nothing is working.

She is high-needs and extremely fussy since day one. She had episodes of screaming/crying since she was born, which we decided it was allergies (I'm on an extremely limited diet...), but although that has lessened the screaming episodes, it has not helped anything else.

For the first 2 months, she just would not sleep. She didn't sleep at night, she didn't sleep much during the day, and the only way we could get her to sleep and to stay asleep was to bounce her on the exercise ball or walk around with her. The second we stopped, she was awake, no matter how tired she was to begin with.

So around 3 months it slowly started to get better with the night sleeping...meaning she actually attempted to sleep at night. We cosleep, although dh is in another bed because dd is such a light sleeper that anything wakes her up. I have to stay stiff as a board in order to not wake her.

She wakes frequently. I'm talking every hour or less sometimes. She never seems to get in a deep sleep. I started putting her to bed earlier, usually around 7 p.m. She'll nurse down, but then wake up about 8 times until I join her at 9 p.m. I have to keep running into the room to put her to sleep. Then she sleeps for the only 2 hour chunk. Sometimes I have to hold her upright in the crook of my arm (i do this about 50% of the night most nights) to get her to sleep longer.

She's started staying awake from about 2 or 3 a.m. till about 4 or 5 a.m. She fusses and cries because I won't get up and play.

When she wakes up she usually nurses or won't fall back to sleep. She takes a paci now, and sometimes that will help her fall back asleep. However, she is insanely restless all night long. She squirms, wakes herself up, kicks me, hits me, etc.

Let's just cut to the chase here...I'm getting a good 3-4 hours of TOTAL sleep a night and have been for the past 4.5 months. I CAN NOT FUNCTION ON THIS AMOUNT OF SLEEP.

I am angry, depressed, short with her, no fun to be around, mean to dh, etc. because I am so insanely tired. I can't be the loving, fun mother I want to be because I can barely function. I end up actually yelling at her during the day : You have no idea how horrible that makes me feel! I just can't even think. She needs to be in arms 100% of the time and still fusses until I get her just right. I am exhausted!!!!

She doesn't nap during the day, except for 3, 20 minute naps on me. I can't sleep during those. I have to walk her around while she beats her hands into my chest and kicks me, totally fighting the sleep she needs and wants, until she falls asleep, then I slowly and carefully sit down to not wake her. If I change her position she is up right away.

Now, I got 2 hours of total sleep last night, so I may sound a bit angry in this post. But I can not take this anymore. Do NOT tell me that she'll sleep when she needs to sleep, because she doesn't. She is NOT pleasant during the day and is always tired and sleepy, but won't sleep long enough to feel rested. She is EXTREMELY fussy because of this. We had 3 good nights sleep in a row a couple of weeks ago and she was a totally different baby. TOTALLY! I've been wracking my brain to figure out what was different (I keep a food log, a nap log, and nothing was different.).

A friend gave us the book my Weissbluth, which I know most of you hate on here. I am anti-CIO, but can you understand the fact that nothing is working now and we need something to change or I'll end up having a mental breakdown. (Not even joking...) He has a chapter on extremely fussy/colicky babies and why they can't sleep after 4 months and what it does to them, etc. He says it can set them up for permanent sleep problems (I do believe this...) and difficult temperments as they get older (she already has a VERY DIFFICULT temperment from lack of sleep.)

So, really, put yourself in our position. Don't tell me you'd wait it out and hope things will get better. It's getting worse. We've seen a ND, chiro, CST, allergy specialist, gastroenterologist, PED, kinesiologist, etc. and nothing has worked. What would you do?

BTW: she won't go to dh...no matter how much we try. She screams and cries. He can not comfort her or put her to sleep...so it's pretty much me and only me.

Mama to DD 06' Partner to Sasa
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#2 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 01:42 PM
 
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Have you tried an elimination diet? I'm wondering if food could be the culprit here. I'd try getting rid of dairy first and see if that helps.

good luck!

-Angela
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#3 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 01:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Have you tried an elimination diet? I'm wondering if food could be the culprit here. I'd try getting rid of dairy first and see if that helps.

good luck!

-Angela
yes. i stated above that i am on an extremely limited diet...5 veggies, 3 exotic meats, 1 fruit, rice and potatoes.

Mama to DD 06' Partner to Sasa
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#4 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:00 PM
 
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Does she have other allergy symptoms? (mucousy stool etc)

DS (6.06), DD (10.08), DD (05.11).

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#5 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Does she have other allergy symptoms? (mucousy stool etc)
yes...

we've seen many dr.s about this already. the symptoms change depending on what "bad" food i've eaten (mucus in stools, reflux, mucus spit-ups, gas, etc.)

Mama to DD 06' Partner to Sasa
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#6 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:08 PM
 
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What does your gastro suggest - neocate or something like that? :


Have you tried a total elimination diet? (just turkey and rice I think is the most common starting point).

ETA - I understand you are on a limited diet. I'm wondering if it should be limited further. Or I must admit I would consider neocate if I didn't think it could be handled any other way. (I have a dairy and soy allergic baby but that is easy to handle).

DS (6.06), DD (10.08), DD (05.11).

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#7 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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yes...she reacts to turkey.

i appreciate the advice, but i've done all i can as far as the allergies.

Mama to DD 06' Partner to Sasa
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#8 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:16 PM
 
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I guess my question is are you open to weaning to a specialized formula.

ETA: I actually mean more like a trial. That was my own plan if dairy and soy did not work I was going to pump for a week and try a formula. Not a popular suggestion around here but I thought I'd mention it.

DS (6.06), DD (10.08), DD (05.11).

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#9 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I guess my question is are you open to weaning to a specialized formula.
o, i see. well, i've posted about that on mdc and people felt it would be a bad idea. she won't take a bottle now...

i'm really torn on this one. i have been able to add more into my diet, and she no longer screams in pain, but i still wonder if the sleep issues and gasiness at night is caused from food. What if she can't tolerate formula? What if my milk dries up and we are worse off than before?

So there are a lot of things we have to consider and not knowing if it will work or not it scary!!

Mama to DD 06' Partner to Sasa
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#10 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:26 PM
 
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It's a tough call really. I'm someone who has to have 10 contingency plans and that was one of mine. In online support communities I 'know' 2 people who tried it. For one it was like a miracle cure and they haven't looked back. For the other her LO wouldn't take it at all and she finally resolved things with her diet (I think she has 12 things she can eat. One of which is olive oil).

DS (6.06), DD (10.08), DD (05.11).

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#11 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:27 PM
 
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Sorry- I didn't read closely enough!

It really sounds like something else medical is going on here. Has she had the extended newborn screening done? Any other testing? Metabolic testing?

I would guess the sleeping is a symptom of the bigger issue.

-Angela
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#12 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:29 PM
 
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Has she been treated for the reflux? It can be severe and so painful. That is what I thought when I read your post. I would rather try an anti-reflux drug than consider weaning. Have you tried the reflux comfort things?
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#13 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:29 PM
 
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Other thoughts:

Is she hitting milestones? Has she been vaccinated? Is there anything else unusual in her history?

good luck!

-Angela
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#14 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 02:46 PM
 
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Mama, I *really* feel for you (hug). I think the sleep issues are just an indicator of a much bigger underlying issue or issue. I think you know this too, but the stress and sleep deprivation are zapping your life force, and all you want is some much needed restful sleep!

I wonder if your baby is reacting to something else the HCPs haven't thought of. Some babies for instance can not process lactose from birth (their gut doesn't have the ability to produce lactase). I would seriously consider talking with LLL leaders, and ask for a referal to their Professional Liason Department (I believe that's what it's called).

My little one was very much like what your DD seems, though I didn't notice too many symptoms in the very early weeks (for about a month). That could have been only due to the fact that I was so overwhelmed by all the changes another baby brought however!

I do understand the sheer exhaistion. I was fortunate that DP took parental leave for 10 months after DS's birth so we could cope better (we just pinched pennies to live). Had it not been for that, I would have lost all my marbles. Can you have anyone you trust to come and help you out whenever they can? You seriously need a break, if not from caring for baby 24-7, then from at least some of the other tasks you probably have to do.

For my case, after my DS got signisficantly better, I found out my intestines/gut was a mess I was paying no attention to the needs of my own body, and I believe the stress, along with restrictive diets really did a number on me. I have a damaged gut, and am struggling to heal it. My DS isn't totally fine yet either, but I've been trying to focus on us *both* to beat this thing.

Anyway, I need to go now, but I wish you the best, and will be thinking of other tips that might help you.
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#15 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 03:07 PM
 
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Poor mama! That sounds very hard. I really feel for you! You have tried so many things! It must be soooooooo frustrating.

As the mom of another not-great-sleeper, I wanted to give you some links of things I started reading around the time my daughter was around the age yours is now:

Moxie's Quick and Dirty on Sleep
Moxie's explanation of 4 month sleep regression
Kellymom's article on why 4 month olds don't like to sleep

I also had the Weissbluth book because of the so-called "helpful info on babies' sleep" (I planned to ignore the CIO parts) and it had me running scared that my baby would never develop normally if she didn't start sleeping more/better, in the way that he dicated in his book.

Knowing more now, though, it just honestly does not make sense to me that there is only one possible sleeping pattern for babies, as he suggests (and I mean the number of hours and frequency of sleep, not the ways to go to sleep). There is variation for babies in weight, length, head circumfrance, poop frequency, when they start to crawl or walk... Why can't there be more variation in terms of sleep, and still have it be normal? In fact it is very biologically normal for babies to sleep lightly, wake frequently, and sleep for short times!

I also think that book holds up CIO as this awesome easy solution that works great (and maybe some people are only held back from doing it by those psychological consequences which are well-documented on this board). But CIO is not just a magic pill with bad side effects! It does *not* always "work", it often "has to be" repeated over and over after a child is teething, sick or whatever. For example a friend of mine who does CIO tells me she hasn't been sleeping well because her baby keeps waking up all night and she can hear him on the monitor. How is that helping anyone get more sleep? Anyway I am asking you to please not believe the hype that CIO is this great solution to all your problems!

OK gotta finish up because my baby is waking up. She now takes all her naps in the carrier. If you are not doing that, I recommend it... a wrap works for us but you could also try a mei tai or ergo. Easier and more comfy than just holding in arms.

Another piece of unsolicited advice is to stop keeping track of how often she wakes, how little she sleeps, etc. When I kept track, it only made me more crazy/obsessive. I am not saying this will help her sleep or that you should stop trying to help her sleep, I believe many babies like this do need help getting to sleep and won't just "sleep when they are tired". But not looking at the clock may help you feel better.

If all else fails, try telling yourself that babies that don't sleep are smarter than average OK, before everyone with good-sleeping babies flames me, that is not really true, but we mamas of bad sleepers have to do what we gotta do to feel better!
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#16 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 03:54 PM
 
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hugs to you! I could have writtian you post almost two years ago. I know how you feel, BTDT, and it is hard. We are still there and it has gotten a little better now that he has all his teeth but we are still no where near going all night. I would scream would people would say this to would pass because I am still waiting. It is amazing how your body can adjust. I need at least ten hours and have not gotten that since I was about7 monthes preg. I have gotten to the point where I can handle it better but it still hits me harder on somedays more than others. four and half monthes is really little still.
Do you have a sling? I still wear my babe day and night and sometimes that helps and I still nurse on demand but when you have a HN's babe, life is hell and it seems like there is no end in sight. I still wake up feeling like you. Have you had her checked for anything medical? She could be in pain somewhere. If she has GERD than carrring her in a mei tai or wrap can help because she is more upright than a ring sling.
Have you tried the elimination diet? I did it four about six monthes and no change except I lost alot of baby weight tha was not coming off before so that was a plus

When he had gotten to around a year or so and still waking every 20-45 min they admited him for a sleep study and has traumitizing and hellish as it was they found that he has a problem transtitoning from light to deep to light to deep. Ususaly people can flow thru them effortlessly but for whatever reason his little brain has trouble with that and there is nothing we can do but help him thru it. That he will grow out of it one day, not soon. It could take until adolecents

I am sorry if that is not what you wanted to hear: PLEASE pm me if you need an ear or some advice. I know how hard it is when everyone elses babes are sleeping and happy and wonderful and you are battling happiness with this wonderful gift that you struggle loving sometimes, even though you know it sounds horriable and you would never say it, I know how your mindset changes and how hard and ugly that is.I know how you feel so please come to me if you need to talk. I will be thnking about you all.

Living DAIRY AND GLUTEN FREE for my SPD and Aspergers Little Man.
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#17 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 05:01 PM
 
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Something else that I think is important is- you need a break. Can dh take a little run at night where he's in charge and you can sleep? (maybe he's even in charge of latching baby on as needed) Or can you have a friend come over during the day or a baby sitter or even mother's helper so you can get even an hour's nap? Really, you need a break- so that you DON'T break

Maybe dh or another loving caregiver can take her for a long walk or drive just so you can re-claim some sanity.

good luck.

-Angela
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#18 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 05:32 PM
 
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I feel you Mama! DD was/is not a good sleeper. Luckily, she was never too fussy or crying. She just never. would. sleep. Now that she's older, we've started some of the no crying sleep solution stuff. Mainly adding a bit more of a routine to her life and that's helped, but she's teething again so. I wish I could offer some good advice! Have you tried swaddling? Also I'd see if I could glean any new info from the NCSS if you haven't already. It's hard enough to get no sleep with a happy baby, I can't imagaine if DD cried all the time too!!!

Mama to Clara 5/2/06, & Anna 11/4/08 and wife to Dan 6/8/02
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#19 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 06:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay, where to start?

My mother is up for the day to help out and right now I am in the bedroom, and dd is out with grammie SCREAMING her head off. She does this whenever someone else is holding her. I need a break! What can I do? I can't sleep because all I hear is screaming even though I can put the white noise machine on and put in ear plugs. Dh yells at me when I go out because he thinks I am "training" her to be this way by taking her back whenever she cries for more than 5-10 minutes in someone else's arms.

They're trying to give her a bottle which she has never taken. She just gets more frustrated...

To answer some questions:

-No, she has never been vaccinated.
-She's had a stool sample which didn't show anything abnormal (but then I was eating "safe" foods while it was taken.)
-She's never had any blood work done (couldn't bring myself to do it) but had the heel prick test when she was a few days old
-If it was a 4 month milestone thing, why would it be going on for 4.5 months? Yes, it has gotten worse recently, but it goes in and out on a weekly basis.


I'm just at a loss. We've read every no-cry book out there. I don't think that CIO is a magic fix all, but I wonder if she really needs to be able to fall asleep on her own. For anyone who has the book by Weissbluth, there is a story in there by a father under the fussy baby part. The way he describes it is EXACTLY what we are going through. He did say that CIO helped.

Just know that I am sooooo incredibly anti-CIO, wouldn't have even thought of it until now. I don't think I could bring myself to do it, but when I reach the point that I am yelling at her and pissy at everyone else, I have to wonder. I have to wonder if we should give it a go, just because NOTHING else has worked. I have AP'ed all the way and it seems like everything I have done is backfiring. No fair...

I can't hold her for naps anymore. I do it all day long and she sleeps for 20 minutes and then her eyes magically POP right open. It's insane. My back kills, my arms hurt, I've tried the sling, the mei tai, etc. but she hates being confined.

She hates swaddling. Did from day one. No matter how many times we tried it.

Dh set up the baby hammock (which I spent days making while pregnant, but she hated and was never in ) in her room and is VERY upset with me that I won't try the CIO approach. He says that after reading Weissbluth's book, it's the only one that ever made logical sense to him. I think in another couple of nights, he will be forcing me to try it. He has to drive an hour to work everyday and almost goes off the road because he's so tired. We just can't do this anymore...

Dd is now quiet. I am going to try to get some rest.

Mama to DD 06' Partner to Sasa
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#20 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 06:42 PM
 
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I had a baby like this. People kept saying things would get better after 2 months- then 4 months- then 6 months- then 10 months- and it never did. At about 18 months, he stopped crying all the time (though he's still crazy-high-needs and he's now SIX) but he didn't even begin to think about sleeping for more than a two hour stretch 'til after he was three. He also had digestive issues, and we saw all the doctors too, and alternative medicine folks, but nothing helped.

Which may not want to be something you wanted to hear, but my point was to say that I DON'T think you should wait-because-she'll-outgrow-it or whatever. You can't live like that and be a good parent.

A few ideas that you've probably already tried, but just in case:

have her sleep on her stomach
try swaddling even though she protests; if you're able to get her to sleep by dancing with her, whatever after she's swaddled, it might help her stay asleep
sleep separately so you don't wake each other up as much
take turns with your husband- he's on baby-call from 8-1; you're on from 1-6. If she cries with your husband, she's still being comforted by someone who loves her, and you need the rest to survive.

I tried a modified CIO with my son when he was 10 months old and my husband and I were both hallucinating during the day from sleep deprivation. And we put ourselves through hell and it didn't work. I suspect it doesn't usually work on kids who are all-around sad much of the time.

E-mail me if you want someone to commiserate with since I don't always check back here. Some of us know how you feel.
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#21 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 08:14 PM
 
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Have you read The Happiest Baby On The Block? I would try swaddling her. Really, really tight. It sounds to me like she has an extremely sensitive Moro Reflex and she is startling too much to sleep. She might greatly benefit from swaddling. This book saved my life with one of my DDs. You do the 5 S's.

Swaddling
Sucking
Side (laying on side)
Side to side swaying
Shushing (this is where you shush very loudly in their ear to mimic the sound of the womb)

I could generally calm my high needs baby down in about 10 minutes using these techniques. But definitely try swaddling.

ETA: I just read your last post that said your DD hates swaddling. So did mine. She would fight sleep with every inch of her body that's why she didn't like it. I swaddled her anyway and she would finally succumb to sleep and sleep like a log.
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#22 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 08:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by lotsofkids View Post
Have you read The Happiest Baby On The Block? I would try swaddling her. Really, really tight. It sounds to me like she has an extremely sensitive Moro Reflex and she is startling too much to sleep. She might greatly benefit from swaddling. This book saved my life with one of my DDs. You do the 5 S's.

Swaddling
Sucking
Side (laying on side)
Side to side swaying
Shushing (this is where you shush very loudly in their ear to mimic the sound of the womb)

I could generally calm my high needs baby down in about 10 minutes using these techniques. But definitely try swaddling.

ETA: I just read your last post that said your DD hates swaddling. So did mine. She would fight sleep with every inch of her body that's why she didn't like it. I swaddled her anyway and she would finally succumb to sleep and sleep like a log.

Yes. I will try it again I guess. She hates being confined. I don't know why she wakes up after falling asleep. She does not startle herself, there are no noises, etc. Her eyes just pop open. It's so odd...

Mama to DD 06' Partner to Sasa
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#23 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 09:19 PM
 
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Oh my, I could have written your post. I know exactly how you feel. I felt like the worst mother, because I was so sleep deprived that I would freak out at dd.: She was champion of the 20 minute naps. NEVER did she sleep longer. I tried everything. Car rides (she screamed) nursing, patting, rocking, shushing, white noise, no noise, hot, cold, tummy, back, side, on mommy, off mommy, alone, with me, sling, wrap, crib, bed. EVERYTHING. Nothing made her sleep better. I was hallucinating and was fearful of what I'd do. I did let her cry once, for 3 minnutes. It was horrible, and I looked at the clock the entire time. I begged dh not to go to work everyday. It was really awful. I swore off any more children (I have since then changed my mind ) I did do the eliminations diet. I ate nothing but rice, pears, turkey, and water for weeks on end. I went from a size 8 to a size 0. I am 5'10', so a size 0 is NOT pretty. I really can't tell you that anything we did helped. She was healthy, not vaccinated, nothing could explain her sleep disturbances. I can tell you that she now, at 22 months, sleeps for 30-60 minutes at a time and will go back to sleep easily if she wakes from her nap early. And she wakes 2-3x per night, which is a dream compared to before. I did have to partially nightwean her at 20 months, which was not my 'ideal' plan, but I was not healthy. My advice to you is get out of the house everyday, and try to have an hour to yourself (as in, not in the same house as dd) I didn't do that, and I am kicking myself for it. She would have been so much better off taking a break from her stressed out, sleep deprived, impatient mama. Even if your dh or mom or a trusted friend takes her on a walk and you take a nap or bath or read or whatever. Or YOu take a walk with out her. Or go to the mall and have dh take her around while you walk around with a cup or coffee or tea. Please pm me if you ever want to talk. Really I can totally relate.
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#24 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 09:23 PM
 
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I so wish I had words of wisdom for you. I just had to write and let you know you aren't alone. My dd was exactly like yours. Horrible sleeper from the first night with us... I would spend several hours getting her to take a nap, and she'd be awake before I even finished going to the bathroom or making lunch. I was always so angry at dh because I had to go nurse her back to sleep every ten to fifteen minutes until I went to bed. Then, like your dd, she still woke up frequently at night. I hope you find something that works. I know how hard it can be to be in your shoes. Sometimes we have to think about the fact that mom and dad aren't good parents unless they have been taken care of as well.
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#25 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 09:35 PM
 
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Just another big

Have you tried a swing? Rivka woudl only sleep in the swing for a while from about 3 - 6 months. I had to leave it on. She didn't like to be held and she didn't like the confinement of slings / wraps, but she loved the swing.

Sorry I don't have any better advice. She's still pretty high needs but nothing like when she was under 1.

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#26 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 09:45 PM
 
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A friend gave us the book my Weissbluth, which I know most of you hate on here. I am anti-CIO, but can you understand the fact that nothing is working now and we need something to change or I'll end up having a mental breakdown. (Not even joking...) He has a chapter on extremely fussy/colicky babies and why they can't sleep after 4 months and what it does to them, etc. He says it can set them up for permanent sleep problems (I do believe this...) and difficult temperments as they get older (she already has a VERY DIFFICULT temperment from lack of sleep.)

For us this was not the case. Being sleep deprived and high needs never started poor sleeping habits. It has only gotten better. She hit the 4 month mark and all hell broke loose. Literally. I was feeling the EXACT same way you did. Plus, she had reflux that was undiagnosed. The best thing I did was get her on zantac. The second best thing I did was learn about infant stress and crying in arms.

The sooner I stopped trying to "cure" her crying, and just supported her through what ever stress relief she needed to do, the better things got.

Around about 7 months things started to get better, nap wise. Meaning, I didn't have to HOLD her for her naps (which were never longer then 30 minutes) anymore. I could actually lay down with her and she'd fall asleep. Then around 9 months I was able to roll away she'd actually STAY asleep. Bliss!!

Now that we have naps sorted out, I've been working on helping her sleep better at night. I started letting her sleep on her tummy. And like I said above, when I stopped trying to "fix" her sleep problems and just let her get it out of her system, she slept well. Great actually. She is sleeping 3-5 hour stretches now!

I have never abandoned her, I have never denied her the breast, and I never did it to "teach" her anything. Three things I will NEVER do. But I firmly believe that babies, just like adults, sometimes need to "let it out". I was always there for her, and if there was something that I thought would help, I tried, but when it didn't, I just held her assured her that it was Ok to let it all out.

I think we sometimes get wrapped up in trying to prevent crying so much that we inadvertently suppress emotions that are desperate to be expressed, and since they can't speak to us, it only seems natural that sometimes that expression comes out as screaming. I just think it's important to be there for them and to support them through it (something Weissbluth and Ferber encourage against).


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#27 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 09:56 PM
 
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: I really think it was MY stress and fear of ever letting her cry AT ALL that contributed to her stress, and thus her sleeping issues.
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#28 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 10:01 PM
 
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I really think it was MY stress and fear of ever letting her cry AT ALL that contributed to her stress, and thus her sleeping issues.
Totally. When I just held her and looked in her eyes and said "tell mama all about, I'm listening", it's like a weight got lifted off my shoulders. I was no longer stressing about how to get her to stop, but instead I was LISTENING to her. It got progessively better from there.

Frankenstein never scared me. Marsupials do. Because they're FAST.
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#29 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 10:04 PM
 
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Yes. I will try it again I guess. She hates being confined. I don't know why she wakes up after falling asleep. She does not startle herself, there are no noises, etc. Her eyes just pop open. It's so odd...
Babies develop sleep onset associations very early - like during pregnancy. They all like to be held to sleep/nurse to sleep. They've been doing both of these things (well, sucking their thumbs instead of nursing!) for months by the time they join us for their first night of sleep on the "outside"!

Your baby is too old now (sleep habits are too ingrained) to just give them up and change how she falls asleep without protest. It sounds like you have exhausted most every option for what else might be wrong. She might be just so fussy and upset because she is awfully overtired and has a raging headache form it - that's how I feel when I am really overtired.

I am going to step aside from what many have advised you here to do. When my dd was close to your dd's age, I was way overtired from suddenly being up nursing far more than I was during the first few months of her life! It seemed crazy, but she was waking a lot more! I decided that neither of us was happy with this, and that I had helped create this problem and as her mom I had to help fix it. So, when she continued to cry to nurse (a million times a night, after months of not nursing at all at night!!!) I would go and hold her, comfort her, but not nurse her - I realzed that she was just wanting to nurse to fall back to sleep - and when her sleep cycle lightened up (as everyones' does) she was looking to nurse back to sleep again. So, I would comfort her until she was calm, put her down into her crib (where she strongly prefered to sleep) and would leave, The moment she cried out again, i was right there, holding and comforting again until she was calm, put her down . . repeat. The first night was awful - about 4 hours of this. Over and over again. The second night was much better, about 20 minutes, and the third night she just woke briefly once. Nothing ever since (illness excluded, but we never went back to the bad times!). And we were all much happier during the days - even G. And I felt as though I was listening to her - she was tired and unhappy. And I *never* let her cry without responding to her. I held her for every second of it - but no bouncing/walking /rocking, as this would be trading one problem for another

I know this is probably not the advice you were thinking you would get, but I just had to try to offer help - I really feel for you all, and remember those foggy sleepy days all too well! Wishing you better nights to come!
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#30 of 102 Old 02-04-2007, 10:12 PM
 
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One thing I wanted to add (and I've bdtd, too - hugs to you mama!), is that when you can, have your mom or dh take her physically out of the house so that you can rest.
My dh would take dd in the stroller or sling OUTSIDE for a walk whenever the weather cooperated so that I could have an hour or so with no crying or baby noise in the house at all. Then I could finally sleep. DD did cry in the stroller for a while, but she'd eventually fall asleep, and in the sling it was even better because dh was holding her. Then, ask your mom or dh NOT to tell you if she cried the whole time, because that will make you feel guilty and the last thing you need is guilt. Just pretend that she slept the whole time they were gone, and cherish the silent alone nap you just had.

Tons of hugs to you - it sucks, I know. We also did a modified sleep thing at about 10 months (see Dr. Jay Gordon's article - can't find the link, sorry, but you can try it when baby is older than 1 year) because both dh and I almost drove into major accidents at different times because we were so hallucinatingly sleep deprived. After that, dd would sleep in a 6 hour chunk at the beginning of the night, which was heaven.

Anyways, more hugs.
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