I have freaking had it! It's been a WHOLE YEAR!

vkitty's picture
Thu, 09/16/2010 - 07:29 -- vkitty

A WHOLE YEAR of NO SLEEP! I'm at my wits end. I cried for an hour last night trying to get this kid to go back to sleep. I'm sure my crying didn't help, but I was so tired! She woke up at midnight, 1:30, and 3:30. When 4:30 rolled around and she wouldn't go back to sleep, my sweet husband took over and laid down in the guest bed with her and I went back to bed. I fell asleep around 5 and got up at 7.

THAT'S NOT SLEEP! That's a series of naps!!!

Sunshine will be a year old in two weeks. I keep reading these stories of babies who started sleeping through the night at 4 months, or even 7 months. Not my baby. She spent her entire 8th month sleeping all the way through and I thought "Finally!", but it only lasted a month.

I know, you're not "supposed" to feed babies that old in the middle of the night. But let me ask you, when she is screaming and crying and inconsolable and the only thing calming her down is a nice bottle of milk, what am I supposed to do then? So, screw you, pediatricians.

Can anyone give me some little ray of hope to either help Sunshine sleep through the night, or at least to help me cope with her not sleeping? Will she just grow out of it eventually? It's been a whole year since I've had restful sleep. Really, more than that, because I was pregnant all last summer too.

I've asked for advice on this before. I'm asking again, because I can't stand this. (Disclaimer: please don't suggest letting her cry it out. We won't be doing that.)

UPDATE:
For the last three nights, I've gone in to her room when she's woken up and done the usual: replace binky, cover with blanket, rub and pat back... usually this is where she protests so fervently that the only choice left is to pick her up, feed her, and rock her.

However, the last three nights, it's stopped with the back rub. She drifts back to sleep, sometimes within less than a minute. Then, she wakes up around 6:30 or so. It's at that point that I pick her up and lay down in the bed with her. She's been letting me sleep in until 8 or 9, too. I mean, she's still waking up three or so times a night, but she's not wanting to be picked up. I think this bad time is on its way out! What do you think?

Comments

shadeshaman's picture

Fuck doctors, they get all their info from drug reps. yes, you need sleep. Have you tried feeding her a big meal of solid food before you put her down for the night? And have you tried co-sleeping? I seem to remember there was some issue around this, but, fuck, if you can, bring the kid in bed with you. My kids were never good sleepers. "Sleep through the night?" yeh, maybe when they were 3 or 4. But they slept in the bed with us, and if they woke up, I didn't have to get out of bed. And they didn't get the opportunity to wake up all the way while they waited for me to wake up and get out of bed and walk to their room to attend to them.

Anyway, that was part of how I dealt with bad sleepers--feed
em A LOT before bedtime, then sleep with them. And, since you have the luxury of two parents, DH needs to man up and take over "awake kid" duties for you 2-3 nights a week.

And, one more thing. Have you tried talking to your kid? She's a year old, she understands a lot of what we say. Maybe just say, "You're a big girl now. You're a year old! Do you know that when kids are a year old, they stop waking up during the night! I think you can stay asleep all night, too!! Let's work on this together." I shit you not, it might work.

"Mediocrity knows nothing higher than itself; but talent instantly recognizes genius"--Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

vkitty's picture
Submitted by vkitty on

On co-sleeping, our bed is just too small and my husband is obese. It's not only uncomfortable, it's also not safe. However, there's a bed in her room. Normally, she wakes up around 4:30 or 5 (last night was extra bad, not normal), so one of us will go in and lay down with her for the rest of the morning.

On hubby mannin' up, he does. We take turns, about every other night, depending on who has to get up in the morning and who doesn't. He's unemployed right now, so he's been taking extra turns. He is an amazing example of what a good husband and father should be, and I'm incredibly lucky to have him! However, just because I'm not the one getting out of bed every night doesn't mean I don't still wake up. Sometimes, we're both up, because she's just nuts some nights!

I think feeding her a good snack is a great idea. I tried that last week, giving her bread. It sort of worked. I work nights, though, so these last three nights my husband forgot to do that. I think we'll make it part of the routine and see what happens.

"Overcome the angry by non-anger; overcome the wicked by goodness; overcome the miser by generosity; overcome the liar by truth." -Buddha

Laughing-Inside's picture

long line of bad sleepers. I sleep with my kid, and I leave sprout or cartoon network on all night. Sure, Boondocks or Robot Chicken can be kind of demoralizing, but not more dangerous then a sleep deprived mom who resents her place in life and is throwing a caniption fit mid day in a sobbing heap over something like misplaced car keys.

cricketsong's picture

Hi Vkitty,

it sounds like you're working with the food thing, so I'll limit my response to that...
According to the 'No Cry Sleep Solution' (Pantley), some foods are particularly good snacks pre-bed and others are less so. I'll leave out the reasoning/science behind it all, I'm sure you can find the book if you want to know more, or get that info from somewhere...

Foods to avoid (foods that stimulate nervous or digestive system too much):
red meat, bacon and pork, sausage, ham;
caffeine (duh!), chocolate, peppermint, fatty/spicy/greasy foods, citrus juices, cream sauce, butter/margarine, additives/preservatives, MSG, carbonated drinks, sugar, simple carbohydrates (white rice, white potatoes, white bread)

Breast milk and cow's milk are exceptions to these(for the cow's milk it has something to do with containing tryptophan)

Good pre-sleep foods:
turkey, tuna, almonds/cashews/walnuts, natural peanut butter without sugar, cottage cheese, hard cheese, yoghurt, soymilk, tofu, soybeans, eggs, bananas, avocados.

Also, she suggests (and this makes intuitive sense to me), to aim for the snack to be half an hour before bed, or at the beginning of your bed time routine...

I hope that helps a bit.

On a different note: THANK YOU for re-posting. Reading your post, while it made me feel for you so much, also gave me a sense of hope. My daughter is about 17 months old and has barely slept for longer than 3 hours at a time...ever. Any time she's teething/sick (such as for the last few weeks) she's been waking hourly, and/or nursing constantly through the night so even if she doesn't wake fully, I don't get any decent rest for even a couple of hours. And because so much of this is ordinary for her and I, I've taken to minimising the impact of that level of sleep deprivation, for that long a period of time. Reading your post (and other responses) was like a lightbulb flash - it's not normal to have this level of sleep dep and *not* be affected in some way. Whew. That means there's hope...

It's also made me pull out the Pantley book and think about our sleep patterns...something I've been meaning to do for ages. So again, thank you.

And I hope to the goddess of sleep and all things restful, that things get better for you soon.

~c

mamasan's picture
Submitted by mamasan on

My DD slept through the night at 25 or so months. Not very reassuring. We did in the bed, out of the bed, bottles, pacis, everything. Nothing worked until she just decided she was ready to sleep. Now, at 3, she's in our bed and sleeps through the night. I honestly don't know how I survived on 2 hour sleep segments for over 2 years, but I did and now it feels like it was a lifetime ago. And now I'm pregnant with #2. Hopefully s/he will be a better sleeper...

sunflower's picture
Submitted by sunflower on

I am a fan of the blog Ask Moxie in regards to these things, and she has a whole sleep category with lots of Q & As. If all else fails, remember this too shall pass.

I wouldn't say it's inappropriate to feed a baby that small in the middle of the night. A snack before bed, especially something low glycemic (cheese, a slice of turkey, whatever is appropriate depending on her diet) may help, too.

Sunflower the unflower

Mom's Tinfoil Hat
Foodie loves Picky

Aurinel's picture
Submitted by Aurinel on

If co-sleeping in your bed is not possible, maybe it would be a solution to have a madrass for her in your sleeping room? That's what we did when DD could no longer sleep through. We let her sleep there for some weeks and now she is back in her own bed. Some children need the presence of their parents while sleeping, and that's quite natural. Hey, that was common practice for long, long times and still is. Our way of parent's sleeping room and child's sleeping room is part of our modern culture. In most cultures the whole family sleeps in only one room.
And there are children that need longer to develop a night sleep routine, even that is quite natural. If possible try to get naps whenever you can, even in day time.

...the lover, the dreamer, and me (Jim Henson)

tttmom's picture
Submitted by tttmom on

I FEEL YOUR EXHAUSTION AND FRUSTRATION OVER YOUR SLEEPLESS NIGHTS DUE TO BABE. WE WERE BIG FANS OF WHITE NOISE. ALSO BOTTLES..BOTH MY BOYS HAD THEM PAST 2 AND THEY'RE FINE! i HAD THE WEIRDEST ADVICE GIVEN TO ME BY PEOPLE ABOUT SLEEP. sOUR CREAM DOLOPS, CEREAL IN BOTTLE, PASTA BEFORE BED. OUR CHILDREN HEAR BUMPS IN THE NIGHT, HAVE BAD DREAMS, GET TUMMY PAINS AND MORE. iT DOESN'T END AFTER A YAR OR 2 EITHER. I FINALLY RESIGNED MYSELF TO SLEEP DEPRIVATION AS A NORM AT THIS POINT WITH 2 STILL IN DIAPERS. I DO HOWEVER TAKE A XANAX OCCATIONALLY AND PUT DAD ON NIGHT DUTY WHEN I FEEL LIKE I'M GOING TO BREAK IN 2. ALSO WE FOUND A HOTEL STAY (KID FREE) EVERY COUPLE OF MONTHS HAS REPLENISHED US IN WAYS WE NEVER THOUGHT POSSIBE! BE STRONG AND KNOW YOU ARE NOT ALONE...FACT IS ONE NIGHT YOU'LL BE SO TIRED YOU MAY NOT HEAR HER AND SHE'LL DRIFT BACK ON HER OWN.

"SOME PEOPLE NEVER GO CRAZY.WHAT TRULY HORRIBLE LIVES THEY MUST LEAD" -CHARLES BUKOWSKI