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Discussion Starter #1
My baby boy is 7 1/2 months old, and is in the most frustrating "I DON'T WANT TO SLEEP" phase. He knows how to crawl and has 1 tooth...he might be getting more. We do the family bed and I have no problems cuddling and nursing him down. But now it's not really working anymore. He'll be so exhausted and cranky that he can't really function, yet he won't go to sleep no matter what I do with him. The only thing that really works right now is riding around in the car. But as soon as I take him out of the carseat, he wakes up. If he falls asleep for 5 minutes, he'll wake up and think he's had a full hour nap, but he'll be so cranky that he cries and complains for hours until he gets a little more rest.<br><br>
This is temporary....Right?<br><br>
It makes me almost want to set up the crib, throw him in it and walk away until he sleeps. That is so not my style. I love having him sleep by me and cuddling with him and feeding him in the night. But I can't really stand this phase much longer. And if he's going to be crying while he's awake and tired anyway.....but I don't think I could actually ever go through with it. It doesn't feel right.<br><br>
What can I do? I don't know how to help him. I don't know what he's wanting to tell me. Does he want to move out of our bed? Any advice?
 

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One thing is always true - long or short it is just a phase.<br><br>
7.5 months to about 12 months can be tough because of all the developmental stuff and teething and that you just have to ride out. Is your baby waking a lot at night too? I never found anything to help with that except time and making sure I got as much rest as possible.<br><br>
However, the putting to sleep thing sounds to me like he needs to go to bed earlier or have more naps - what is his daily schedule like? Consistency in naps and bedtime routines really paid off for us. At 7 months he was still on 3 naps a day but every baby is different. We also had to change up how we got him to sleep many times. Have you tried walking/ bouncing in a carrier? It's way easier to transfer.<br><br>
Do you have anyone to help? Bedtime struggles are so frustrating but gradually getting my dh involved gave me breathing room and restored my patience.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I've been wanting to get him to bed earlier and nap more. I do think that would help. It's the implementation that is difficult.<br><br>
What he used to do was get 3 naps per day. 2 of them were about an hour and 20 minutes and another was 40 minues. Then he would go to bed around 8 pm and wake up around 7 or 8 in the morning. He would wake and eat several times during the night and go back to sleep.<br><br>
What he does now is goes to bed around 10 or 11 pm (!!!) and wakes up around 6 or 7 am (!!!) and naps are so sporadic I can't even generalize. He still wakes up and eats at night, but usually he'll cry when he wakes up which isn't something he used to do. Sometimes naps will be 2 1/2 hours or longer because he's so exhausted. But I still think he's not getting as much napping as he used to. When we try to get him in bed around 8 like he used to, he'll treat it like a nap and wake up around 9 wanting to be up and playing...which is why he doesn't fall asleep again until 10 or 11.<br><br>
How can I keep a schedule better?
 

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I would pick an earlier bedtime since he is waking up so early. We actually put ds to bed at 6 to 6:30 when he dropped to 2 naps and had such broken nighttime sleep. I aimed for 12 hours of cumulative sleep, and usually ended up with 11 (minus the really bad nights when he was up for 3 hours).<br><br>
When he wakes up at 9, keep him in the bedroom, dark, no talking etc etc so he doesn't confuse it with a nap. Keep trying to get him to lay down gently. I often had to give up with the extended night wakings and just let him do his thing (in the dark) until he fell asleep again. These episodes completely disappeared when he finished teething.<br><br>
Do you think your DS is ready for a 2-3-4 schedule? First nap 2 hours after waking, second nap 3 hours after the first nap ends, and then going to bed for the night 4 hours after the second nap ends. I would shift bedtime slightly based on when his last nap ended and even wake him up if he was napping too long.<br><br>
I know it's really hard to get a baby to nap. Some don't force the issue, but I did as I just knew DS was so tired and if I took his lead he would have been constantly overtired. DS was a terrible napper - 45 minutes and he'd be up so I had to nap with him to make sure he would sleep for 1.5 hours per nap. Again, now his teeth are through he naps like a champ.<br><br>
Most of all, stick to the schedule (though be sure to note when you need to alter it, like dropping to one nap). You might not think it's working but I think it is really what helped us over the long term. It was predictable to ds and helped dh and I when we were so tired and frustrated - sort of an autopilot.<br><br>
How long has it been going on for? If he's working on a tooth it might be over before you know it but keeping to a routine will help him pick up where he left off - in theory!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I think I will try a 2-3-4 schedule. Sounds like it might be good for us. (good idea! Thanks!) I'll work harder to keep him down when he wakes up at 9 too. It's frustrating that the first thing he does when he wakes up is to sit up. It makes it a lot harder to keep him relaxed lol.<br><br>
He's been restless for about a week and a half now. It might be another tooth. I hope so actually. I hope they come in groups and don't string themselves out so he doesn't have to be miserable for long periods of time.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Wah. So yesterday he napped perfectly and slept well at night. Today I can't get him to nap at all! To top it off, I couldn't fall asleep until 2 AM! last night and so I'm tired and hoping to take a nap with him....but he's just not interested. Plus since he won't nap, he's been making a whiney sound all the time today while he's been playing which just grates on my nerves.<br><br>
This is only a phase.....this is only a phase....this is only a phase......
 

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It is only a phase. He's probably getting more teeth. They often come in in sets of 2 or 4 one right after the other. Also he could be getting ready for other physical milestones. My DD crawled forward and then starting pulling up and cruising in the same week at exactly 7.5 months. Her sleep the previous 3 weeks had been horrible. Her sleep improved immediately and stayed better until her canines started coming in.
 
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