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I'm at my wit's end. I'm definitely open for advice.<br>
We have tried to practice "Attachment Parenting" as much as possible since our 22 month old son came into the world.<br>
We have coslept the entire time. Now my son is too squirmy and takes up most of the king bed, so that my husband has to sleep by himself. It is awful for him and for me too not to be able to sleep together. Not to mention awful for any kind of intimacy. How do I get my son to sleep by himself in his own room? I'm definitely ready to be done with co-sleeping if I can't sleep with my husband.<br>
The next major issue that I have is that my son won't play by himself. I don't know if it's just his personality or what, but he has to have me around him most of the time. It's about to drive me crazy. I can barely go to the bathroom without him crying. What do I do? I have absolutely no time to myself and it's really taking a toll. I feel like I'm losing it and not able to be the mom that I want to be because I can't take care of myself mentally.<br>
Please tell me that this will get easier!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>rionnhannah</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10689947"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">The next major issue that I have is that my son won't play by himself. I don't know if it's just his personality or what, but he has to have me around him most of the time. It's about to drive me crazy. I can barely go to the bathroom without him crying. What do I do? I have absolutely no time to myself and it's really taking a toll. I feel like I'm losing it and not able to be the mom that I want to be because I can't take care of myself mentally.<br>
Please tell me that this will get easier!</div>
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Welcome to the world of toddlers. A tincture of time will take care of this. I've got "mommy, mommy" climbing into my lap, so I'm cutting this short.<br><br>
We still co-sleep, so no advice other than does he sleep on the outside of you so you're between him and you're husband? That's what we do so husband and I can cuddle.<br><br>
"Mommy, mommy," gotta go.
 

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Some toddlers are just so mommy oriented and needy while others are more independent. I have two girls. The older one was like your ds. I had to interact with her all the time. I got used to having her non-stop on me/next to me and she still at 4 wants to be with me most of the time. I think it is her personality but I also think our first child gets so much attention that she/he gets used to it and you know what happens next.<br>
Are you able to do other things than play with him? At certain point you need to start including him in daily life activities that are not centered around him. Are you able to invite him to cook with you, help? Clean up the room? Go shopping with him? Even though my older dd wanted mommy's attention all the time she enjoyed outings where she could interact with other people and she liked to cook with me, that kept my sanity. At this age you may ask him for two minutes or whatever time frame works for you to have time to read your email/news and gradually extend that time. However, going to a bathroom alone may not happen soon...<br>
Now, my second dd is different and even though I tried to play with her, she just doesn't like that, she wants to play on her own or with her sister. She still gets a lot of time with me but not a play time.<br><br>
As far as co-sleeping goes, I vote for putting your child on a side of bed and inviting your husband back to your bed. Plus, in my family, we don't use our family bed for intimate time, bed is for sleeping LOL.
 

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Have you read the "No Cry Sleep Solution" book specifically for toddlers and pre-school age children? I know she has a whole chapter on moving from the family bed to a toddler bed.
 

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We have a king and twin in our room, with the them all pushed together up against the wall. Dh on the outside, I'm next to him in the king and ds sleeps in the twin, when he co-sleeps. He initiated moving to his own room around age 5.<br><br>
Consider a mother's helper. Best $5/hr I ever spent.<br><br><br>
Pat
 

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Are you getting any breaks/help? I would definitely consider someone to help-either cleaning or someone to play with your babe while you're home and get to do whatever you need/want around the house. We sleep a few nights a week with ds in the middle, and it seems to work out a few nights a week that I sleep in the middle so dh and I snuggle. It's worth trying out! And our bed is rarely used for intimate time too...
 

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After hearing stories like these...and what my mom is going through...(she started my adopted sister in their bed when my adopted sister was 10months, and she is now 8 going on 9 and STILL sleeps in the same bed...its my stepdad, my mom, then my adopted sister.) I will NEVER do this. I know people say...never say never...but after seeing what my mom goes through, how her marriage is going down the tube and the tantrums my little sister throws when my mom trys to ween her...I won't put myself through that.<br><br>
I would agree, maybe a toddler bed next to your bed. Or maybe make sleeping in his own room an "adventure"...hope this gets easier soon!
 

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Have you tried sidecarring a crib to give him his own space to sleep in?
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lizziebits</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10695186"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Have you tried sidecarring a crib to give him his own space to sleep in?</div>
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we were in your situation and this saved us!!! ds was getting so kicky, none of us were sleeping properly. then dh went on a business trip and it was just ds and me in bed-- we slept soooo well! i considered kicking dh out, if only to sleep again!<br>
but instead, we tried the side car. i nurse ds to sleep in our bed, go about my evening and when dh and i go up to bed, i just scooch him over into the sidecar (many nights he moves over by himself at some point--he loves it in there). we all have a lot of space!<br>
as for the neediness, ds has those days too. sometimes i find that pretending he's happy actually makes him happy (distraction, i guess it would be). tonight he was dragging me away from the kitchen with a cranky whine and i just said, oh do you want to help mommy make dinner? then popped him into his learning tower, gave him some kitchen stuff to play with and kept talking in a happy voice. eventually he forgot he was cranky.<br>
toddlers all have days like this. you'll get through it!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>sarahd25</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10694444"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">After hearing stories like these...and what my mom is going through...(she started my adopted sister in their bed when my adopted sister was 10months, and she is now 8 going on 9 and STILL sleeps in the same bed...its my stepdad, my mom, then my adopted sister.) I will NEVER do this. I know people say...never say never...but after seeing what my mom goes through, how her marriage is going down the tube and the tantrums my little sister throws when my mom trys to ween her...I won't put myself through that.</div>
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My guess is, you've only heard the "horror" stories. People who are happy with the situation don't need to post here.<br><br>
My son is 26 months old. I have NEVER been tired since he was born. Not even when he was nursing every 75 minutes at night. I LOVE co-sleeping. In addition to the ease of night nursing, I also sleep easier because I do not have to worry. He is right there. I can hear every breath he takes. There were recently a lot of break ins in our neighborhood--even at homes with dogs. I would have been so scared if he'd been in another room. Plus, when he has nightmares, I can attend to him without him getting out of control scared.<br><br>
I love waking with him. He snuggles in to nurse. He is now old enough that he says, "Mommy, Daddy, Baby, home." He then climbs in between me and my husband. You could live a week without food just by looking at the feelings of well-being and content on his face.<br><br>
He sleeps on the outside so my husband and I can cuddle through the night. I love that he knows we all sleep together. When we are making the bed, it is "our" bed.<br><br>
So, everyone has to do what works for them, but I hope you will look for the "good" stories before assuming everyone has a hard time. Also, the book "Our Babies, Ourselves," talks about how the choices we make in the way we raise our children have long term effects. She looks at the choices different cultures make and the way the kids react to those choices. Very good book.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>rionnhannah</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10689947"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">The next major issue that I have is that my son won't play by himself. I don't know if it's just his personality or what, but he has to have me around him most of the time. It's about to drive me crazy. I can barely go to the bathroom without him crying. What do I do? I have absolutely no time to myself and it's really taking a toll. I feel like I'm losing it and not able to be the mom that I want to be because I can't take care of myself mentally.<br>
Please tell me that this will get easier!</div>
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As I previously posted, my 26 month is constantly all over me. There are times I just want to pee by myself. But, you know, this will be over so soon and I will miss it so much. I think we have to do a mental game and remind ourselves of this.<br><br>
Babies really should be raised by tribes for just this reason. However, we live in a culture where a group activity has become an individual activity. Your son was made to get lots of attention and you are his only source.<br><br>
We go to a group activity almost every day just so I can have some space. While he's doing his thing (which is often done while clinging to me) I can at least talk to other moms. It makes a HUGE difference. Even at his current story time where I really don't know anyone and he is the only child clinging to mama, I feel a bit freer. Maybe something like that would help you feel better.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">You could live a week without food just by looking at the feelings of well-being and content on his face.</td>
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I know that feeling.<br><br>
My daughter has been attached since birth and she has periods of being mommy's little barnacle and other periods of being a wild donkey. I agree about putting her in a separate sleeping place in the same room if it's bugging you, but before you do that, check out the mainstream forums- you will find that you are not the only one with sleep issues and that they do not only stem from co-sleeping.<br><br>
Not to say not to stop co-sleeping. Just to say, that may or may not be the magic bullet you are looking for.<br><br>
Also, I have an SIL who is the least attached mother I've ever seen. Ever. And her child is also a barnacle child. The difference between our daughters is that hers is always distressed and screaming, and mine is on me. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug"> But she still thinks that hers will "get used" to being "independent", even though after 18 months of holding her as little as possible, she's still the clingiest little thing you ever saw.
 

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Sorry, my last response about sidecarring the crib was a bit short, as DS woke up. Sidecarring has been great -- we all have a bit more room. As far as intimacy, do you have a guestroom? Or could DS start out in his own room at the beginning of the night?<br><br>
For the clinginess, babywearing has been our lifesaver. I pop him on my back in the Mei Tai and am able to do laundry and prep dinner. I also find that when I am busy doing something, DS is better about letting me get it done. For example, if I am cleaning up the living, he is better about playing independently than when I am playing on the computer. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"><br><br>
We spend lots of the day doing chores and running errands, and go to playgroups 2x week. Playgroup is awesome -- DS is soooo independent and I get to sit and just talk!<br><br>
I also try to get in several 10-15 minutes breaks throughout the day where I am entirely focused on DS. For example, if he brings me a book while cleaning, I stop right there and read to him for a while. I find that really focusing for these 10-15 minutes breaks throughout the day allows me to have him be a little more independent.
 

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very briefly:<br><br>
We're starting to move ds (2 1/2) to his own bed, and I've skimmed Jay Gordon's chapter on helping kids transition out of the bed, and it looked good. I'm going to read it more carefully soon!
 

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I just wanted to tell you my experience. We had to move my 19 month old (now 20) out of our bed because we had a baby, and whenever I tried to nurse the baby my son would go crazy. What we did was get a single mattress and put it directly on the floor in his room, and we made a great big deal about his new big boy bed. I lay down every night there and put him to sleep and then sneak out. During the night when he wakes and cries my dh goes in there and gets him back to sleep, sometimes falling asleep himself and staying there. It isnt perfect by any means, but is working. On average he wakes up twice. The first many nights he would cry for me for anywhere from 2-20 minutes, all the while my husband is there holding and loving him...I would like to go in, but most of the time I am nursing the baby. He LOVES his bed and often wants to drink his bottle laying there while I read to him....I am not sure if you have another baby, but if not....maybe this would work and when he wakes in the night you could go to him and get him back to sleep.<br>
Good luck,<br>
Sarah
 

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A thought about the wildness at night. How much caffeine does your son get? Either via breastmilk or directly? If I have even a small amount of chocolate in the morning, my son tosses all night long. He doesn't get any caffeine in his foods--we don't allow sugar so there's not associated caffeine as you'd see in soft drinks or chocolate. Even if we did allow some sugar I wouldn't let him have chocolate. He just can't sleep well at all if he's had ANY chocolate.<br><br>
A friend's daughter was always more "energetic" than my son. Even inutero. Then I found out that mom always drinks at least 2 cups of coffee a day. I avoided chocolate and soft drinks during pregnancy and early months. Wonder if that's part of the difference in the babies.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>rionnhannah</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10689947"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm at my wit's end.<br>
...I can barely go to the bathroom without him crying. What do I do? I have absolutely no time to myself and it's really taking a toll. I feel like I'm losing it and not able to be the mom that I want to be because I can't take care of myself mentally.<br>
Please tell me that this will get easier!</div>
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I could have written this post. Every few months I feel like I'm a failed AP parent and that all the extra child attention means Mommy pays, emotionally, mentally, physically, whatever. But then we make it over whatever hurdle we're facing and I'm back to thinking AP is all good (mostly).<br><br>
When DD was that age we were exactly the same way. Even now (at 34? months) she still screams if I get in the shower when it is just the two of us home alone together. Things are getting better now, in part because I'm pg and with my growing belly I'm less willing to pick her up and hold her all the time. And I figure that with a new baby on the way I have to get her used to being not the only child in my arms. So whenever I feel she can handle it, I don't jump to pick her up immediately when she asks for it. Little steps. We go slowly with this and there are days when she just needs the full attention but more and more frequently she's ok with not being carried around. Not that that specifically is your issue, but just take little steps creating independence. If you don't respond immediately to a request you may find it doesn't get repeated. But you'll know if it is a time when your DC really needs it.<br><br>
DD is also a squirmy, kicky, head-butting, active sleeper. What is it with toddlers and horizontal sleeping? I highly recommend investing in a bed rail. They do make them that fit king sized beds (what we have). That way I can either have DD in the middle or on the side of the bed. It has meant that we call can stay in one bed together. Although I'll admit that if she's extra squirmy (at least one night a week) I am the one who pays and doesn't get much rest.<br><br>
We also transitioned DD out of our bed for the early part of the night. She'd sleep in her toddler bed in her room until 1am-3am ish then call out for us and we'd come get her. She spends the rest of the night in our bed. It doesn't sound like much, but being able to go to sleep snuggling DH was a big deal! And that rest I'd get in the early night was priceless. My hope was that DD would get used to the toddler bed and spend longer and longer in there. No such luck. So now we've moved the toddler bed into our room. She starts the night in the bed and when she wakes she climbs into our bed. There was one night she slept in her own bed until 6am!!! I didn't know what to do with myself! Maybe that will happen again?!?!??!<br><br>
As for the playing by himself... the best way I've dealt with that is to start playing with a toy with DD and then leave her at it. Often this means only that I can do something of my own right there next to her. She hates when I'm out of sight. But sometimes she's so engrossed she doesn't notice I'm no longer playing too. And the more times she has that are fun independant play times, the more she's ok with it. She's gotten a LOT more used to me being in another room for short stints while she's playing.<br><br>
Sorry, I wrote a book, just I so know what you are going through. Hang in there! This phase really doesn't last!!!
 

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I would get a toddler bed and either sidecar it to the side of your bed or just put it in your bedroom. This is what we did a couple of months ago when our 2-year-old got too big and squirmy to share our queen-sized bed.<br><br>
I don't have any advice about the playing by himself. I don't know what I would do if I only had one child, because the only "me" time I get is when my older two are playing together!
 
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