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Hello,

I'm a second time mama with a new infant. My babe is a bit on the sensitive, fussy side and I'm definitely in the adjustment period! He's a darling, don't get me wrong and we are doing everything we can to soothe him (lots of wearing, co-sleeping etc) but he's difficult to settle.

So I think I need to hear some testimonies from moms who had challenging infants who then developed into more easy going children.

Looking for reassurance...

Deb :
 

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I just pulled out my No Cry Sleep Solution book because I was having some problems with my youngest. I found #2ds's sleep log. OMG!!!! I can't really remember buying it or The Fussy Baby Book. He was really rough for the first 6-8 months, would only nap in my arms for the first 4 months, nursed almost constantly and had to be rocked to sleep screaming most nights. By a year, we had most of that worked out. I do credit my chiropractor for some of it. And the books really helped. And time- time really helped. He is 2 1/2 and goes to sleep like clock work, naps beautifully and is a complete delight. Ok- he is a bit rigid. We can't change anything. He tells me where things go. He doesn't really trust me to be in charge of his baby brother. That is where his difficulty has moved to and it works for us. My oldest was a pretty easy baby and he is a whole nother story.
 

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Grayce (the 9 yr old I nanny) was apparently really difficult as a baby (I wasn't around the but I have heard the horror stories) she basically screamed the first 1.5 yrs of her life and now she is an absolute joy...she is super helpful, very easy-going, very mild-mannered, and almost never needs to be disciplined. Seriously she is one of the best 9 yr olds I know (and I am not biased at all
)
 

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My first dd was a difficult baby, and now she is a trying child. But, she is so smart and funny and definitely has her own way of doing things. Actually, when dd #2 was a baby I thought she was going to be boring
: but it just took her a little longer to find her personality. She is now a little ham, definitely the class clown type.
 

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My dd was born intense and is still incredibly intense, at the age of 5.

She is so sweet and brilliant, though. I've noticed that she is sooooo incredibly in tune with me.... if I have an "off" day, even if I'm not showing it, she'll automatically react to it and act out like crazy. She's super intense... and very intuitive. She has "psychic" dreams a lot.

She feels and reacts to emotions really really strongly. Everything is always all or nothing. But she is just... so... much more *advanced* than other kids I know in so many different ways..... I often feel like I'm the child and she's my teacher.

You may have your hands full, but it will be a wonderful journey and it will be so WORTH IT!
 

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My son was so fussy until he was about 5 months old. I fantasized about pitching him out the window at times, I am ashamed to admit. We worked so hard at trying to help him, and comfort him. Then, one day, it stopped and he was a dream. He was the kind of toddler who would tell me he was tired and go off to bed! He went from not sleeping, to napping twice a day for 2 hours each time AND a full night sleep! He is an easy-going and mild-mannered 6 year old -- the kind of kid teachers love! He is responsible and reliable, and a totally excellent big brother. He is our honey.

My dd on the other hand, was so easy-going as a baby we wondered if she was developmentally-appropriate! Her only requirement was food and constant holding. Then, at a year, she decided to do things differently, and she became really demanding (not always in an unpleasant way). She is almost 5, still sleeps with us because she needs to, and is very cuddly and affectionate with both of us. She is a really neat kid, just tells you her needs really clearly!

Carolynn
 

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My DD was a VERY 'fussy' baby (words like "challenging" come to mind...). Colic, the works.

And then....

She got old enough that she could do things on her own. And she did them. And she was happy. That simple. We concluded that as an infant, she was frustrated because her mental abilities were so far ahead of her physical abilities. Once she'd caught up, she was so much happier. She's been a very, very 'easy' child, so far as you can call any child 'easy.' Tends to listen to us, is heartbroken if she hurts your feelings, takes scolding VERY seriously, tries to do things independently whenever she can but will accept help from us if she is getting frustrated or we insist. Likes to help people. Is generous with her things. Knows her boundaries despite all this (knows when to say no to people). I've always felt like she is her own person, and as a parent I am just along for the ride as she grows and develops.

DS was an easy baby. He's been a tough toddler to parent. Much more taxing on our patience, much less empathetic, much more likely to disobey than his sister is. I feel like I have a more 'parental' shaping-type role with him than I do with my daughter, like I have a lot more influence over who he becomes.

With just two of the world's children, I am hardly qualified to say that there are patterns to it, but I have to say that I felt my children to be more malleable (DS) or more themselves (DD) from when they were very young, and I think that this may be more important than early temperment itself in determining how they are as preschoolers and beyond.
 

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Hi, I am a new mother too, and I have just read a book that helped me a lot... It gives you a better undrerstanding about why some babies are more fussy than others and also gives you some god tips.

The Happiest Baby on the Block (The New Way to Calm Crying and Help Your Newborn Baby Sleep Longer) by Harvey Karp

It definitely worked with our ds... Less
and better


Good luck

(I am a french speaker... Sorry for my bad english)
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by candiland
My dd was born intense and is still incredibly intense, at the age of 5.

She is so sweet and brilliant, though. I've noticed that she is sooooo incredibly in tune with me.... if I have an "off" day, even if I'm not showing it, she'll automatically react to it and act out like crazy.
Mine is 3 (almost 4....acts 8), and is the same way. A challenge, but a wonderful challenge
.

You know, my mother works in an infant daycare and sees LOTS of babies. When I was pregnant, she would say "Oh, I hope you are blessed with an easy baby". Well, I was not
. And then I worried over that, cause she made such a big deal about easy/difficult babies....and then we worried over the future. Would she have trouble in school? Be a difficult teen? Or would she "get it all out" now, and be a well adjusted teen? What if????

But I have learned that it is more important and helpful to meet my child's needs right now (no matter how difficult--and as you clearly are doing) than to speculate on what challenges we may face in the future. Worrying about her future behavior was affecting my parenting in undesirable ways (should I be holding her less? Should I be punishing her more?). And, I've accepted that my dd is perfect just the way she is. Her temperament has positive and negative qualities, just like any other temperament. She is who she is, and I love her for it
 

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My oldest was colicky, grumpy, a CHALLENGE...she's almost 12 and is still a CHALLENGE. She's very bright, musical, well read...that's just her. (Intense is a GREAT description!)

My older DS was clingy, but very quiet and "good"...turns out he had a hearing/speech problem (could have been part of the quietness!) and is now a strong-willed 9 year old who is ALWAYS right and can argue his point into the ground, again INTENSE (hmmmm....could they be a little like Momma? :LOL)

The baby...he was VERY difficult as a newborn, turns out he was reflux-y. Once that was under control, he's been the sweetest even tempered baby I've had....give him a couple of years and he might become just like Momma too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you all for your wonderful stories! It really helps to hear about the variety. And perhaps the wise momma who told me to stay in the present and not worry so much about what the future has in store for us really has the ticket. I do think I need to just concentrate on meeting baby Jesse's needs and not worry that he will be hard to handle forever.

I think because I have a three year old as well , it's hard not to compare and wonder what the similarities and differences are going to be. But of course, Jesse will be his own person and that is the joy of parenting.

Keep the stories coming. They are fabulous.
 

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I have not read the other testimonies, but I want to share mine with you.

My son was born 3/02. He was fussy from day three. He HAD to be constantly walked, bounced and sung/talked to. He slept ONLY on one of us. He woke up to nurse 8-10 times a night. If he was not getting his way, he did this irritating, "uh uh uh uh" constantly. He was never a screamer or a cryer, but man, could he b*&%h up a storm! He was a 24-hour a day baby and definitely a two-parent child. I lost 15 pounds more than my pre-pregnancy weight from the constant walking and bouncing. I had serious ligament damage in my feet from the bouncing (which healed, thankfully).

Fast forward to today. He is darn-near perfect. I could not have a better toddler. He is engaging, cheerful, not a major tantrum thrower (he is two, but not terrible), adventurous, outgoing, not clingy and an amazing kid to be around. I feel like every ounce of energy I poured into him and all of the patience I dug down deep to find and the occasional glass of wine for my nerves ;-) helped create this awesome little person.

I got tons of criticism about the way I handled him. Let him cry. You are spoiling him. Stop nursing at night. Put him down. Just give him a bottle, and he will sleep more. You are creating your own problems. It was awful. Now I look at all those people and really want to flip them off. I know that a lot of it is just who he is. There is a genetic component that has nothing to do with his first 16 months. But I also know that I did the best thing for him, and that if I had not, I could have destroyed all the good traits that he was born with.

It DOES get better, and on my honor, it is worth everything you put into it. It seems like forever to get to the payoff, but when you do--WOW!
 

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As a baby, my now 6 year old screamed so much for so long (nursing didn't help, sling didn't help, nothing helped) that one day I felt like smashing her head into a wall. I had to lay her gently down right where I was and go to the far end of the house and just cry and cry.

Fastforeward 6 years -- she is a super picky eater and can be a bit mellow dramatic BUT she is sweet and friendly and helpful. She loves to help in the kitchen, she makes friends easily, and she is very bright. My parents joke that some kids march to a different drum, and she is the drummer! Her big thing in life right now is being a Brownie Girl Scout.

She is such a fun kid now and it is really had to believe it is same person.
 

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DS was a very difficult baby. He screamed non-stop for hours, in spite of all my best AP efforts. He wouldn't nap unless he was moving, so we went for lots of walks and car rides that first year. He woke endlessly at night and nursed constantly. He cried, a lot! He just wasn't a happy baby at all. My husband is convinced that he just hated being a baby ~ he became much happier once he was mobile.

I can honestly say that he became one of the most easy-going toddlers I know
. He almost never tantrumed, sleeps like a dream, and is happy, creative and full of love.

There is hope
.
 

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My oldest was a fussy cranky baby and the older he gets the easier and more mild-mannered he is. It seems like he craves stimulation and independence, and the more control he has over those things -- the happier and more content he becomes.

My youngest was a sleepy mild-mannered infant, and the older he gets the more demanding I find him! LOL. Its as if he wants to revert back to the tiny thing that could ride around in a sling all day, and the more he has to do for himself the crankier he gets!

I also believe that "difficulty" lies more in the eye of the beholder. What I find challenging in a child will be different than what you find challenging. My own hot spots determine how I see my child and at which ages I view him as difficult. When I am able to confront my own issues, I find parenting even a fussy or cranky child much easier. Does that make any sense?
 

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Just gotta put my 2 cents in while I have a sec.
I had two very fussy, gassy, needing-constant-attention babies. I could not put either of them down.
I indulged their needs and wants and spoiled the heck outta them when they were babies. Now they are easy, communicative, articulate little boys. Obviously challenging as parenting always is but they are definately not esp. difficult kids.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by cam's mama
So I think I need to hear some testimonies from moms who had challenging infants who then developed into more easy going children.

Oh, you only want to hear from the moms of kids who turned into mellow children? I better stop typing
:LOL

Hang in there! 0, 1, 2, 3 and 4 were all really hard but my dd mellowed a bit around age 5! (uh, "mellowed" in comparison to her earlier years - not in comparison to any other kids we know :LOL) And so far 6 is pretty great!
 

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There are two replies on here that I could have written! the first was:

Quote:
She is so sweet and brilliant, though. I've noticed that she is sooooo incredibly in tune with me.... if I have an "off" day, even if I'm not showing it, she'll automatically react to it and act out like crazy. She's super intense... and very intuitive. She has "psychic" dreams a lot.

She feels and reacts to emotions really really strongly. Everything is always all or nothing. But she is just... so... much more *advanced* than other kids I know in so many different ways..... I often feel like I'm the child and she's my teacher.
we must have the same DD.

and the person who said that as soon as DD could do things herself she was a MUCH happier baby - I always sensed from day 1 that DD was unhappy being helpless and that her mental abilities were ahead of her physical ones. She was SUCH a hard baby. Constantly had to be held and entertained and NEVER slept. She nursed constantly and I totally remember flipping out about being a human pacifier for her. But I met her needs. and now she is amazing.

She is nearing 3 and is quite a joy 95% of the time. The other 5% she is downright the spawn of Satan. LOL. She is articulate, smart and funny, very friendly and outgoing and VERY VERY independent. She is even actually reasonable. When people give the terrible 2 comment, I say not her, she's a wonderful child!

My personal philosophy I have shared before is this: If I am going to laugh about it later I may as well laugh about it now. This has saved my sanity.
 
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