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Old 01-08-2013, 10:47 AM   #1
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Please help with sleep problems

Hello!

I've created a monster and I need help. I have a 13 month old who we cosleep with since day 1. I've always loved cosleeping and nursing in bed but I'm ready for him to sleep all night in his own crib in our room. The problem I am having is that he will not fall asleep without nursing and he wakes up NUMEROUS times at night fussing to nurse and I have to keep tossing and turning and switching sides and he does this like 6-8 times all night. I also lay him down around 9 (I lay in bed and nurse him to sleep). After he is asleep I am finally able to sit down and do my school work (trying to finish Masters degree). He is literally up by 11 if not sooner because he tosses and turns and doesn't know how to go back to sleep on his own. So I have to stop my homework and lay with him AGAIN. It's so frustrating. I really really am desperate for a gentle way to get him to sleep in his own crib for naptime and at night. I really don't want to resort to cry it out. thanks so much for the help !!

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Old 01-08-2013, 11:26 AM   #2
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Re: Please help with sleep problems

A few thoughts:
1) Could he have his own room? At 13 months he is so aware, and he'll be able to see you laying right there. Otherwise, potentially some way to use furniture or a curtain so he can't see you while you're sleeping? We only have two bedrooms now, so that is what we plan to do for DS2 once he gets a little older.
2) What worked for us once my son was around that age, and did not need the breastmilk at night (he also ate meals and drank cow's milk starting at 12 months) - I started to set hours that I would try to not nurse him. He was in his own crib in his own room most of the time and had on his own started to only wake a few times a night - unlike the every 1-2 hours he had done as an infant for a loooong time. Anyway, I nursed him before he went to sleep around 7. If he woke up before 9:30 pm or so, my husband walked him around to get him back to sleep. I really needed that time to get stuff done and relax, and finally felt that since he didn't need me as much for nutrition, I could have that "mom time." Later on, I was able to expand my hours to not nursing between 11 pm and 4 am also - again, if he woke during that time, my husband walked him around. This worked because my DH was willing to do it, and because DS had always accepted that form of comfort assuming he wasn't actually hungry.
3) He may also be ready for a new bedtime routine that doesn't revolve only around nursing. We always did bath, nursing, bed. It started taking a really long time for him to fall asleep while nursing, and then oftentimes he really wouldn't fall asleep at all, or would wake in the transition from nursing to being put in the crib. So, then we started bath, story, bed.
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Old 01-08-2013, 01:08 PM   #3
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Re: Please help with sleep problems

What worked for us is once I decided to night wean, about that age, DH would rock DD2 back to sleep. After about 3-4 nights the night waking decreased significantly. But she was also in her own room....
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Old 01-08-2013, 06:03 PM   #4
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Re: Please help with sleep problems

Thanks for the advice. I'll try anything anyone suggests! We currently have a 3 bedroom house but will be moving to a 4 bedroom in 2 weeks. So do you think that it would be better to just put him in his own room right when we move? I was just thinking he would be in a new house, new surroundings, and he would be scared at night... What do you think I should do when we move? Transition him to a crib in our room first and THEN move the crib out or just put him his own room right away?
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:19 PM   #5
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Re: Please help with sleep problems

bumping for anymore suggestions!
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:11 PM   #6
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Re: Please help with sleep problems

Sounds just like my older DD. The thing that worked for us is to have DH put her to bed. She would still wake up a couple hours later, but it didn't take me 45 minutes of nursing to get her to sleep...he could get her to sleep in 10 minutes. Of course it took some getting used to on her part, but she got used to it. But she would wake up a couple hours after he put her to sleep, and I would go in about 3 times to nurse her back to sleep before I went to bed. Then she was up every hour to nurse. I just dealt with it, and eventually she started sleeping longer stretches. By the time she was 2 she was sleeping for 3 hour stretches, and then around 2.5 years, she finally started sleeping long stretches. Around 3, she became a great sleeper, sleeping 12 hours and she still does that at 5 years old. I was sleep deprived for the first 2 years of her life. So I don't really have any advice other than it did help to have DH put her to bed so I could have some time to myself.
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:14 PM   #7
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Re: Please help with sleep problems

At 14 months we were in a similar situation. DH works late so I had to try to get DD down without nursing (ended up weaning) which took a few weeks to get figured out. At the same time she was waking up 8+ times throughout the night. We decided to let her cry it out which only took 4-5 nights before she wasn't waking up anymore. We all needed sleep and now at 2 years DD only comes into our bed during the night 1-2 times during a normal week. Try a routine such as bath, books, etc. and be patient until he's down for the night. We decided on a certain time that we wouldn't go into DD's room (11pm-5am or something similar). I can't remember the source for that but I believe I read it online. It is rough for a few weeks but in the end was definitely worth it for everyone involved.
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