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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Jeanette

Hoping you may be able to help with a little problem we're having. Our lovely daughter Lauren is now 14 1/2 months and in the last 3 weeks has developed sleeping problems, well waking problems really.
Shes a really happy and contented little girl when awake, always laughing and playing and having fun. Doesn't show any signs of over clinginess except maybe when she's tired or feeling poorly and then only wants mummy (which sounds pretty normal to me?).
Its bedtime whcih is now a problem. When I put her down she tries to sit/stand up and starts to cry. Despite all my reassurances she still cries so have adopted the crying it out whcih does work (usually falls a sleep withing 5 - 10 minutes). Not keen on doing this as hate to hear her cry but it does work.
The main problem is she wakes again during the night and again will not lie down and is inconsolable. I can't bear to hear her so upset so she comes into our bed and once she is asleep I place her back in her cot.
As I said this has occured every night for about 3 weeks.
Am I doing anything wrong? It breaks my heart to hear her so upset as its so out of character but Im worried that the sleeping in our bed is becoming a habiit she relies on?
Sorry to ramble but nerves a bit frazzled!
Hope you can help.


Jo

xx
 

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We had problems with one of my twins. He has a cry that can wake the dead 5 miles away. He has a will of iron, and he can easily outlast us.
Anyway, around 15 months he started waking and crying. We put it down to the fact, his routine was disrupted, by visitors. We then went on trips and had more visitors and so on. We found that we had trained to go to sleep from being awake, but not from being partly asleep. So we used to take him out into the garden in the summer evening sunshine and play with him. We then put him back in bed and he would fall asleep immediately. Bizarre!
But 4 months later he was still crying at night, so we made a concerted effort with the controlled crying routine. It just made things worse, till he was waking every hour and crying for an hour. At this point I took him to bed. He promptly fell asleep and we slept solidly for the next 6 hours. Bliss!
For a few days , he slept with me. Hubby got kicked out bed. Then for a few more days, he slept with me in bed in the nursery. Then I put him in his cot and every time he cried, I took him back to bed with me, till he settled, and then put him back in his cot and stroked him till he slept. Then I slept in the nursery and every time he woke, I’d go “shush”. And a few days later I went back to sleep in our bed and just went into the nursery, when he cried.
It took a couple of weeks for this to work. He was just lonely and needed someone to be there for him. This state of peace lasted about 3 weeks, till he caught his next illness. And then he couldn’t bear to be separated from us again. He cried for 3 hours continually one night, fell asleep and woke up 30 mins later and started crying aging. So he came back to bed with me and we started the routine all over again.
Only this time, hubby slept in the nursery for the next 5 months. My twin couldn’t bear to be alone. He had to have someone with him. Why hubby and not me?
My twin is a noisy sleeper. I sleep very lightly and wake up at any sound from the babies, so I wasn’t getting any sleep. Husband on the hand, you could set a 21 gun salute off next to the bed and he wouldn’t hear it. Secondly, I am a quiet sleeper and husband is noisy sleeper, so when my twin woke up, he couldn’t hear me, so he cried out for attention. With hubby, he heard hubby sleeping, knew there was someone there, so he rolled over and went back to sleep.
Once winter was over, with all it’s coughs and colds, he got a lot better. And we took the side off his cot, which meant he can come and find us, if he needs to. So that made him happier too.
But the truth is, age 2.5, I still take him to bed at least once a week. He’ll go to sleep, wake up, 2 hours later and he is inconsolable. So I’ll take him to bed, for a couple of hours and then put him in his own cot. Or he’ll wander in, in the middle of the night and we’ll cuddle up till getting up time. If I put him back to bed, he’ll cry for hours at full volume and I’ll never get any sleep. It’s just easier to take have him in our bed.
He just can’t bear to be parted from mum or dad. Separation anxiety is what I think they call it. We did a web search and tried all the techniques, that were suggested and nothing worked. So hubby slept in the nursery.
The other twin, has slept well since we stopped feeds, at 4 months. OK, we have problems, when he is ill, or his routine is severely disrupted, but that is to be expected. He too suffered separation anxiety, but we filled his cot with stuffed toys and it seems to have worked. He has a comfort towel, he absolutely loves. I brought a towel down, to wipe the twins down, after they had got muddy, playing in the garden and he liked cuddling it so much, I can’t get it back.
I think some children, just feel deserted in the middle of the night and there is nothing you can do, till they grow out of it 1-2 years later. So we will keep sleeping in the nursery, keep taking him to bed, till he can cope on his own.
Sorry not much help,
Lorna.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks a lot for your story Lorna, its nice to knoe we're not alone!
Wow you sound really calm about the whole thing. I get myself a bit stressed about it which I know I shouldn't. I need to listen to my own advise and take each day as it comes and just be there for her.
I read somewhere that a child who gets upset when their parent is away from them but is then happy when they return that this is a good sign that a loving bond has been made and the child is very happy so I should be glad really. Just hard to see it like that when lauren's cries jolt you out of your sleep!!!
Its interesting that your twin was OK with your hubby going to him. Lauren only wants me when she's upset. Not sure if my hubby is glad of this or not! I think he used to feel a bit put out but he realises that he is getting better sleep than me so he doesn't complain so much anymore!
When I've read up about separation anxiety and night waking it seems the advise is to let baby cry it out but this seems to hard and as in your case proved it can only make crying worse anyway. I'm going to do as you have done and continue to be there for Lauren and just hope it doesn't last too long!

Thanks again.

Jo
 

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Hiya!

I will answer over the weekend! I havent forgotton Jo

Love

jeanette xxxxxxxxx
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi Jeanette

Sorry to be a pain but still having same problem with Lauren and would really appreciate your thoughts from a HV point of view. Know you're probably really busy so big thanks in advance.

Jo

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Hiya Jo

Sorry for the delay...I just dont know where the time goes.

Interestingly, around 20% of one year olds awake once or more during the night. So remember, you are not alone. My daughter didnt sleep through the night until she was 2 so I understand how you are feeling as well.

I know you dont like hearing Lauren cry but obviously this does work for her as she is only crying for a short period of time. If you dont want to continue this let me now as I am going to concentrate on the waking up during the night.

Initially, dont go in at the first cry..see what happens.

If Lauren is crying go in..comfort and settle her by stroking her back & head..talking gently to reassure her. Introduce a soft comfort toy (plus her dummy if she uses one) and give this to her. I know this is hard...but dont pick up her. Go out of the room once settled. If the crying doesnt stop after a few moments go back in and repeat the above. Gradually, extend the length of time that you leave her. Lauren will learn that you will comfort her..the soft toy will just help to reassure her when you are not there. This may take up to 2 weeks or more to work. Try and your partner involved as well. But to be honest my daughter is a mummys girl and had her dad gone in..she would have been worse.

Keep the nights down dim. If you speak to her make sure its in a quiet voice. Try not to sing to her as Lauren may feel its playtime.

Alternately..you could sit beside her until she falls asleep. Gradually extend the distance between you so that eventually Lauren learns to fall back to sleep on her own without you having to be in the room.

Try not to let her sleep after 4pm in the afternoon (unless she is ill/ under the weather)

Remember, Lauren will eventually get into a good sleeping pattern. If you let her fall asleep in your bed then move her back to her own Lauren may become upset. Its best to let her sleep in her own bed and keep her there.

Have a read of the above. I can do a sleep diary with you if you feel that will help. Your health visitor may have access to a sleep clinic so it maybe worth you asking.

Please please remember, you are not doing anything wrong Jo. You are also not alone.

Come back to me when you have chance

Love

Jeanette xxxxxxxxxxxxx
 

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Janette,

Mammoth post coming up!

I've read the above and it does seem to make sense but my situation is a little different.

Jessica is 8 months old now. We put her in her own room at 24 weeks and initially, she was brilliant and was sleeping through from 8.30pm until 6am.

For the past 8 weeks or so (although it feels much longer), she has been waking regulary throughout the night. Initially, it would be bang on 10.30pm and then she'd settle again quite quickly. Then it went to 11.30, then 12.30. Now she is waking regularly between 10.30 until about 4am. If she wakes just groaning, we leave her and sometimes she does drift back to sleep. Other times she doesn't and we have to go in to her - hand on chest etc. But recently, she has been waking with a piercing cry that makes it sound like someone is frightening her out of her skin.

I go in, pat her chest and say shhhhhuuuuussssshhhh and she is usually not quite awake but will grab my fingers and pluck at them. After she has settled, I leave but it can be 10 minutes later and she can be awake again and this can carry on most of the night. If I leave her to cry it out, she wakes herself up and it is even harder.

We have a V-Tech lullaby light which kicks in if she cries loudly for more than a few seconds and this used to be great and settling her back down. It still calms her but she doesn't go off with it unless it's an awake period before midnight.

I ws in tears earlier this week. I haven't felt this tired since she was BF on demand through a growth spurt!!! I have the monitor next to me and every time she cries, my heart really jumps. I think I'll give myself a heart attack if this carries on for too much longer.

Now, she has just cut her first 2 teeth in this past week, but as I say, this has been going on for a while. She isn't too interested in her bed toys and if I give her her emergancy dummy, she just takes it out and tries to put the whole thing in her mouth. Thinking it's teeth related, I gave her some Medised but it only made a difference to the early part of the evening. I've tried the gel, the powders and Calpol. The other night, she decided she was only going to wake once for half an hour just after midnight and it was bliss. I've been racking my brains trying to think if we did naything different that day to affect her pattern.

Sorry to ramble. It just seems the hand on chest reassuring thing which initially worked just fine once or twice a night, is now becoming totally ineffective. I picked her up last night and she was making groaning and cooing sounds on my shoulder but soon woke up once she was back in her cot crying. She eventually settled at about 3.45am.

I look forward to your response Janette or anyone else that can help.

Deborah - how are things going for you. Any change??

Love Angexxxxxxxxxx
 
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