Baby fighting sleep - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 12:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My DD is 6 weeks old, and has decided that she doesn't want to go to sleep for the night. I nurse her, put a clean diaper on her, and put her down in her crib and she starts screaming bloody murder. This is the same thing I do during the day with better results. I put her down at the first signs of sleepiness and have tried white noise. She kicks and wiggles and refuses to close her eyes. Tonight we put her in the swing for 30 minutes, she was asleep. Then we tried to put her upstairs in her crib for the night and the fight began. She ends up yelling and we end up frazzled. I offer to nurse her, and she'll nurse for a little and then refuse it. There has to be a better way to get her to sleep rather than just waiting until she exhausts herself and us every night. It took her 5 hours last night to finally exhaust herself and I'd rather not continue this. Any suggestions?
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#2 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 12:21 AM
 
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My DD (9 mos) does this same thing and has since she was quite young. I find that, mostly, she does better when I gently try putting her to sleep and if she's clearly not ready immediately remove her from the crib and try another half hour of awake time. Also, I do generally nurse or rock to sleep and definitely hold her for a few minutes after she is asleep to be sure it is sound sleep. Finally, sometimes she just will not fall into a sound sleep while I'm holding her (too much going on,I guess?) I have to put her in the crib-- sometimes I keep my hand on her back, but sometimes even that is too much stimulation and I have to let her cry a bit (never more than 1-2 minutes... I don't like to do it, but sometimes it's the only way she can fall asleep and I know she is exhausted) Hope that helps!
Bethany

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#3 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 12:38 AM
 
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What happens if you put her in bed with you and all go to sleep together?

-Angela
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#4 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 01:00 AM
 
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Originally Posted by alegna View Post
What happens if you put her in bed with you and all go to sleep together?

-Angela
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I'd give cosleeping a try. Is that an option?

~Marie : Mom to DS(11), DS(10), DD(8), DD(4), DD(2), & Happily Married to DH 12 yrs.!
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#5 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 01:08 AM
 
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Is she still in the nurse-and-poop-each-time phase? Then yeah, you have to keep ding diapers after, but soon enough, you'll be able to switch that - diaper and then nurse. Changing a diaper, even gently, silently and in the dark will wake the baby every time!

What about a basinet in your room if you are opposed to cosleeping? Alone at night in a dark room in a big space (to her!) is probably pretty scary. A basinet's smaller size and close walls may be very comforting.

What about swaddling?

How asleep is the baby when you're trying to put her down? She probably needs to be held longer, and then once you've slipped away she still needs the security of your presence - the basinet and/or swaddling can help with that. Rocking her, swaying and/or bouncing for 10-20 minutes may help as well, and it's a lot easier on everyone than screaming and yelling and getting frazzled.

Is baby "intense"? Holding her head up and making eye contact better than any newborn you've ever heard about? You may have a "High Needs" or "Spirited" baby - nothing wrong with them, they just need to be parented a bit differently.
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#6 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 02:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My usual routine is change, nurse, rock, put down for sleep. If she poops when I nurse her I sadly have to change her after that. In the middle of the night it works great, it's just that initial getting to sleep that's a real pain. We've had her in a co-sleeper before but it's not ideal for us. We're going to try that tonight to see if it works better. We've had her in a bassinet in our room before and she's not too fond of it.

We've swaddled her before and it usually just irritates her more. It's worth another shot though.

My husband held her and rocked her for a good long time, and the moment he stood up, her eyes shot open and the unhappiness began again.

We think she's deep asleep when we try to put her upstairs. Her arms are limp and her face is relaxed.

We can tell she is very tired, but just doesn't want to or can't sleep. Eventually she just physically gives out and falls asleep which can't be good for her. She had her growth spurt earlier this week and maybe this is just a reminant of that. I hate seeing her so tired and unhappy and not being able to fix it.

She may be high-need. She's making lots of eye contact, looking around and holds her head up alot. She has always wanted to be held alot and I've spent whole days either holding her, or playing mattress.
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#7 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 11:21 AM
 
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I would try to have her sleep touching you for a few days. Many babies really do not sleep well isolated in their own space.

-Angela
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#8 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 12:08 PM
 
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She doesn't sound "high need" to me at all. Sounds like a normal baby who wants to sleep with mom.

~Marie : Mom to DS(11), DS(10), DD(8), DD(4), DD(2), & Happily Married to DH 12 yrs.!
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#9 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 12:10 PM
 
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I would suggest swaddling, as well. Dd used to fall asleep pretty well in-arms if she was well swaddled, then we'd transfer her to our bed or her bassinet.

We did try swaddling when dd was first home with us and it didn't work for us (she fussed like crazy), then a few weeks later we tried again and it was a totally different experience. After enough practice, I was able to swaddle in such a way that it was not too hard to change her diapers and keep her arms wrapped up (only undoing the bottom of the swaddle). The book "the happiest baby on the block" really helped us figure out how to get her to sleep at that age.

Good luck!
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#10 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 12:14 PM
 
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Yeah, with more info, she doesn't sound High Need.

But all babies have a high need for touch.

Are you slinging her during the day? A sling or other carrier can be perfect for both baby and mom. Baby gets the touch she needs, mom's arms get a break.
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#11 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 01:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We'll definetely re-try swaddling her and see if that helps her stay asleep for us.

I have been working the sling in more often during the day if I need to get stuff done around the house. I am still learning how to use it and get her in it easily, but it's been a great help when going to the store, or trying to get stuff done around the house. Yesterday afternoon she spent a good 2 hours in the sling sleeping and seemed to enjoy it alot. She also enjoys sitting in her swing next to me, the motion and white noise it plays really helps her sleep.

My friend loaned me her copy of Happiest Baby on the Block and I'll have to look at it again - the shushing and white noise have really helped at times and I could use a refresher.

We'll have her in our room the next couple days since family is coming for the holidays, so that'll give us a chance to see if sleeping in the same room or our bed will calm her better.

Thanks for all the advice and suggestions.
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#12 of 12 Old 12-22-2007, 01:34 PM
 
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n/m

~Marie : Mom to DS(11), DS(10), DD(8), DD(4), DD(2), & Happily Married to DH 12 yrs.!
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