View Full Version : Please Help...5 month old son
05-28-2008, 05:27 PM
I am a military spouse who stays at home, and who does not live close to any family. I have a 5 month old son, I am exhausted, and completely frustrated. My son will not take naps unless I am holding him, as soon as I lay him down he wakes up. From day one my husband and I would put him in his cradle and he hated it...he would just cry and cry. So we would pick him up, he would eat and fall asleep at the breast. He wouldn't sleep in his own bed, so he ended up in our bed. At his 4 month checkup I asked the doctor what to do and he said as long as he is safe in his bed, dry diaper, and isn't hungry he can just cry...well my son cries for 2 hours without one hint of being exhausted from crying. So after 2 hours you have to assume that he is hungry and needs a clean diaper. What should I do from here...should I change him and feed him and then put him back in there? We let him cry for a little more then a week, but he never went to sleep, but now he is going backwards because I can't even leave the room or his side without him screaming his head off. I think he thinks I am going to leave him...so now I cant do anything without him. For example when I take a shower he is in his bouncer in the bathroom with me and he cries the entire time cause he cant see me. I go into the kitchen when he is in the living room and he cries cause he cant see me. I need help...I don't know what to do, both set of grandparents don't have any advice because they never had to deal with this...Please Help Me! I feel like I am about to loose it!
05-28-2008, 08:21 PM
Breathe in. Breathe out. Your situation is unpleasant, but you're the mommy and you'll solve it. :) People are probably SO sick of hearing my mantra, but I HIGHLY recommend "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child", by Marc Weissbluth. I was in a similar situation with my daughter, and this book made all the difference. Someone might slap my face for this, but have you tried letting him sleep on his tummy? My daughter COULD NOT sleep on her back. Flipping her over made all the difference. As long as he has good head/neck control and uses a pacifier when sleeping, I don't think you have to freak about SIDS. My daughter also believed she needed to be in my arms to nap, and we corrected that thinking rather early also. :) Try having him in your room but next to your bed until you get his sleeping figured out. Once he's going to sleep on his own and sleeping in his own space you can get him transitioned to his own room. As he re-establishes some security/attachment with you and his independence in sleeping improves, his independence at others times should naturally improve as well. I know you're wiped out, but this is just a season. You'll get it figured out, and things will be enjoyable. Hang tough. And read that book! Best of luck to you :)
05-30-2008, 08:25 PM
I totally understand what you are going through.. my son does the same... he is soundly asleep in my arms.. like nothing could wake him up.. so I even so gently move from the couch to the crib.. it takes me half hour to get there so slow I go... then I put him down gently, keeping my hands under him to avoid an abrupt release, bring myself up, finally breathing and.... whaaaaaaaaaaaaaa there he goes!!! unbelievable!! he has like a sixth sense or something...
but some days are better than others... so I my hopes are up.. I am sure that you will feel better too. Have you tried the game of peakaboo (sp)? I have read that it teaches babies to learn that people can go away and still exhist.
05-31-2008, 10:43 PM
I'm always in agreement with MommaC on sleep advice. I didn't read the same book, but we have used the same principles with the same outcome. Uninterrupted sleep. :)
It will be rocky for a few days, at least, but you can do it! Consistency and tough love. At 5 mo, you should be able to get him through with only one night feeding if any at all. He is physically old enough to make a 5-7hr stretch, but sometimes that's a lot to break a little one of all at once.
We had to use a gradual method with out DD. We never allowed her to sleep in our bed, so that will be a tougher hurdle for you. Maybe set up his crib IN your room to get him used to a crib. My DD refused to sleep in a bassinet or playpen (unless at Nana's), and we found that she was strictly a tummy sleeper. We put her crib in our room from day one, and then at 8 weeks moved it into her room. She started long stretch at night almost immediately, but anytime an illness caused an all nighter we had to 'retrain' her. When she awoke at night, we didn't take her out of her room. We put in a night light so we could see our way around when needed, and that helped her as well. Also, we ran a fan in the room (still do) for white noise. That was a lifesaver! I would take in a bottle (stopped doing that at 8mo, she went onto only water), change her, soothe her, rock her for about 7 minutes or so (kept an alarm clock on her dresser to make sure I was always consistent) and then into the crib she went. I would give her 5 minutes of fussing before her daddy got sent in to soothe her for a little bit, then back into the crib. The following time, she was allowed to cry for 10 minutes before Daddy went back in. So on and so forth. We had to send Daddy in because seeing me usually put her over the top, and it was only fair that Daddy got to enjoy parenthood at its best. :) We had a few long night after illness having to go through this course, but she always got back into sleeping all night by herself.
A bedtime routine and naptime routine, even at such a young age, are vital. A consistent routine, consistent bed time / nap time, and consistent mommy are all you need. You'll get him through this. And you'll get him through all the phases still ahead. Each hurdle you get past will give you more tools to work with. Try a few different methods to see what works best for your son. Keep with a regular bed time, and nap time, and he'll catch on.
I remember times when I would sit outside her door, bawling right along side her. Never with her, that wasn't what she needed. She needed me to hold her and comfort her, reassure her that I was always there no matter what. After I did that, then I could break down while she wailed in her crib. :)
05-31-2008, 10:46 PM
And when I say "5 minutes of fussing", its probably more accurate to say "5 minutes of screaming/wailing/crying". Fussing is just more of a loving term. :)
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