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Old 05-28-2006, 07:05 AM   #1
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Unhappy I'm exhausted...*long*

I want to start with...I'm really not *whining*...but I'm exhausted with ds2....I *know* he's not being 'manipulative' like the ped says...I firmly believe that he's 'high-needs'...and I swear he's going to be adhd or something when he's older....but man, I just need to vent or get some advice or something..

He's 9mo. He's not breastfed and is nowhere near sleeping through the night. Even interrupted, he doesn't get close to 10-12 hrs of sleep a night. It's like he's an insomniac. At one point he'd gotten to where he was only waking around like midnight or 1 and then getting up at about 5...sometimes he'd go back to bed for a little while, sometimes not. Now, When I manage to get him to sleep...he'll sleep for awhile in my arms...once I lay him down, he'll wake up anywhere from 15 seconds after to 15 min. He's up every 15 min - 1 hr in the middle of the night....but not to eat. I don't know why he's up? Co-sleeping all night isn't any better. For 1, dh gripes...but for 2, ds doens't sleep ANY better...and in fact, sometimes seems irritated by my presence...but most of the time we do co-sleep 1/2 the night...because we end up on the couch.

I think he sleep-crawls too and that's what wakes him sometimes - the fact that he crawls and hits the side of the playpen (his bed). I know he will crawl around in his sleep - because he does that when we're co-sleeping...but I don't know that to be the culprit of his constant night-waking.

During the day/awake times...he'd be happy if I bounced him all day long and talked in silly baby/goofy voices constantly....but that's not an option...I don't have 24/7 to devote to him. Ya know, I have to go to the bathroom sometimes? I have to shower? I have a toddler too! So without the CONSTANT attention, he spends a lot of his time whining and crying. He doesn't appear to have anything physically wrong with him (although he is teething - but this behavior has been going on long before teething). I need to get a sling, but he's not happy just sitting or being held...he's up/down/up/down...never still.

I'm sure there's more but I'm being yelled at (by my 9mo, lol)...when the rest of it comes to me, i'll post it too.

So real quick - ds1 was SO easy....and ds2, is definitely not....I feel like a failure! I don't know how to make him happy....is there something i'm missing? is this just personality? is this something i should take to the ped (different one than the one that said he was manipulative)...? ugh!

I dunno, I'm just at a loss....any advice would be appreciated...but I don't know if I've even presented the situation in a way that would make advice easy to offer. Ack. Thanks for letting me vent.

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Old 05-28-2006, 10:35 AM   #2
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

I posted this same (roughly) issue on a private board run by friends I've known for years...and I'm so sad that these are the responses I got:

"Older babies are hard to change when they have developed a habit. It is possible, but it's going to extremely stressful for you guys. Decide on a plan that you think will help him stop behaving the way he does and STICK TO IT!!! If you give in EVER, he is going to know that his consistent crying and whining will get him what he wants. That's not what YOU want, so you just have to deal with hearing him cry all the time. Eventually he will get the picture."

&

"all i can tell you is do what i said before. Do not continuously hold him, walk by him let him know that you are there for him and he is safe but he doesnt have to be held! I wish i could help more but thats all i know"
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Old 05-28-2006, 10:43 AM   #3
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

I'm very sorry to hear this! How many months has this been? I have a few friends who have had this problem as well. As for teething, what are you doing to relieve his pain? He's probably been having teething pain for quite a while before he actually starting getting teeth. My DS is 4 months and has been having pre-teething pain for almost 2 months. Not that I advocate resorting to "drugs", but this might be a good time to give him a dose of tylenol or motrin to help him cope with the pain. He also may be going through an extended growth spurt causing restless sleeping, or this may just be his temperment.

During the day my DS can be the same way. He gets bored with his environment, so we spend most the day outside watching cars and playing with plants, while I make silly noises and sing songs to him.

I don't know if any of this helps, but I empathize with you. Hope you can figure out a better situation for your family.
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Old 05-28-2006, 11:46 AM   #4
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

He'[s been like this since a few hours after his 4mo vaccinations and he was 9mo last week. Thanks for your words of encouragement...

Oh, and I have been giving him tylenol & orajel.
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Old 05-28-2006, 12:19 PM   #5
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

I might try another ped...he could have something really bothering him, like silent reflux, or ears, or a bunch of stuff...I am so sorry your friends answered you like they did...most 9 month olds aren't capable of CONSTANT manipulation by crying, that is crazy...he may be high needs or it could definitely be something physiological -
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Old 05-28-2006, 12:31 PM   #6
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

Man, the un-AP answers are pretty heart-wrenching, huh? You know their kids' needs are being ignored or only sort of being attended to Lots of hugs and props to you for being such a devoted mommy and meeting his needs so well, even tho it's costing you

I don't really have a lot of advice - my DD is like your first DS - an "easy" baby. She loves being played with, but can easily entertain herself for a while, too. A sling might help you, since it would keep your DS in on all the action, but still allow you to do some things. I find that Isabel loves the hip carry in a sling, but I know she'd hate anything that snuggled her in - she needs to see what's going on! Something like an Ergo, MT or Patapum that would let you do a back carry might be a better option - Drake can see what's going on, but your hands are both freed up and you can get stuff done much easier - even run around with your toddler

If he's an up-down-up-down baby, you'll probably need to build up his baby wearing tolerance, but I think wearing him will really give you a bit more freedom. As if it's really freedom when you have a chubby little dictator strapped to your back, but at least you can grab some chocolate!

Are you getting any caffeine? When I was taking my childbirth class, our instructor said that (if you BF) any caffeine you take in stays in baby's system for 24+ hours, so if you're having coffee at the same time every day, it's actually building up in their little systems. I couldn't find anything online to corroborate her info, but to this day I take in minimal caffeine. Just kind of a side thought.

A friend of mine had a nightwaker (at least once an hour and he was still doing it at 12 months plus) and she said that to curb it she: "basically camped out in his room for a few nights and gradually intervened less as he got more used to getting back to sleep without being in our bed/nursing/being picked up/etc." I'm sure it makes for a couple rough and exhausting nights for mommy, but she's pretty AP also, and couldn't bring herslef to let him CIO.

Isabel wakes every couple hours at night, but usually gets in a good 4-5 hour stretch when I first put her down. What are Drake's naps like? When do you put him down for the night?
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Old 05-28-2006, 12:54 PM   #7
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

Vick, she's not bfing, pay attention!!

Those ideas you heard about making him stick with a routine are not the way to go. Neither is your ped telling you he is manipulative (a manipulative 9 mo??). I am a firm believer in instinctual parenting. I also know how you feel, because my first two dc were very easy, but then I had two more boys and oh my goodness, they are difficult. We've been through kind of a lot trying to figure out if something is wrong with my 3yo. He's been to speech therapy, occupational therapy, had his hearing evaluated...nothing worked.

Now, he is finally starting to get better, at 3 1/2. I believe it's just a personality thing, and I wouldn't, if I were you, allow thoughts of your son being ADHD to invade your thoughts about him. I am very lucky as I am able to homeschool, so I can attend to the individual needs of my kids. I would be worried if I had to put Isaiah in school because he probably would be labeled ADHD or something.

I also might look at possible physical problems. If he is eating table food, is he getting too much sugar? Is he pooping enough? Could be a physical problem.

OTOH, it may just be his personality. LIke I said, I have 2 boys who are much more needy than my first two, and it's just something we've been having to deal with right now, giving them as much attention as possible. When it's not possible, try a carrier, like a Patapum or Ergo - something that keeps him out of your hair a little bit so you can attend to other things.

Hope something I've said has helped, I realize I babbled a lot!
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Old 05-28-2006, 01:45 PM   #8
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

Another long post - and I think I'm mostly rambling?

I appreciate all of the responses I really think it's probably just his personality - but it's hard not to think..ya know...babies are not SUPPOSED to act this way...there has GOT to be something wrong...he can't just be unhappy all of the time for the sake of being unhappy.

He is eating table food, but none of the obvious sugars...ya know, sweet stuff...he gets the things we eat for supper (if not, he screams even more - he HAS to have what we have..he demands it! lol)...so ya know, peas..green beans...mashed potatoes, unmashed potatoes (potatoes are not a regular/frequent thing so the starchs shouldn't be the culprit)...anyway..just your basic stuff....on a very rare occasion my 2yo has some pudding - at which time the baby also gets a little bit of pudding...but it's nowhere near a regular basis..and it's only been as of late - and these problems have been, as i said, since 4months. He poops regularly. He was pooping like once a day in the mornings..then it was several times a day...now it's back to like once in the morning and once more (sometimes) at some other point in the day. He does have reflux...he was on meds for it but I didn't see any significant improvement...but we switched his formula to Alimentum, for other reasons, and he no longer spits up...but we're seeing the ped on Tues for his 9mo checkup and I'll ask about meds again.

Sometimes I wonder if he could be having a urinary problem...I don't really have a good reason to wonder this...i'm definitely a worry-wart...so, and the following may be TMI re: boy parts....i was part of the aug 2005 expecting board on ivillage and one of the babies from there has to have surgery at a very young age (i'm thinking a couple of weeks or a few months?) to 'realign' the path which urine takes to leave the body....LOL...i don't know proper names Apparently the hole was 'off' and had to be fixed. With that said, Drake's 'hole' is a lot lower than Kain's and the skin around his penis where he was circumsized ( if i could turn back time.....) seems to be inflamed a lot...anyway....he doesn't pee very much...SIGNIFICANTLY less than my 2yo....sometimes I wonder if he could be experiencing kidney/bladder pain/discomfort?

But then...if i babble at him and make stupid faces/noises he's happy...so that would lead me to believe that it's not a physical problem...but surely he's not just depressed all the time? I have a Snugli that we use when we're out and about...but he's not a huge fan of it...I'd really like a MT or a sling of some kind..but we're flat broke. I do have "The Original Baby Sling" or something like that..but he doesn't like it either...and it seems bulky to me and not very open for him.

As far as the sleeping, I don't know if I really understand what was said by pp about the friends baby? But...with Drake...a lot of times he'll just pass out on my shoulder as soon as i pick him up...but as soon as i lay him down, he wails. He's VERY dramatic...by that I mean that he doesn't have like a whimper before the wail..it's just all out screaming INSTANTLY...and the boys share a room...so the less crying the better I don't know how else to explain how dramatic he is...but it's not just the way he cries or the sleeping that makes him dramatic..he's just got a very dramatic personality.

Anyway....thanks so much everybody and if you've read through my entire post....

Oh, and to clarify...I *do not* believe that he's manipulative...I don't believe he's like he is just to get what he wants...but because it's either his personality (I absolutely believe he's high-needs) or he's got something physical that I just don't know about..
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Old 05-28-2006, 02:26 PM   #9
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

So he sleeps well when holding him (upright) but wakes when laid down AND has a reflux history??? I'd think its something going on with the reflux or his ears like someone else mentioned. My middle dd has ADHD and even SHE can eventually lay down & go to sleep (pass out). It really doesnt sound like that right now. And he is definately socializing so i would suspect any pervasive developmental disorders. It just might be his personality & he very well MIGHT out grow it, but its gonna be rough in the meantime. My dd was sleeping thru the night until about 9-10mos & is now up at 1 & 5am again for no reason and always wanting my attention. I'm hoping its just a phase. They say that when kids enter rapid growth stages or learning stages their sleep habits & other stuff can be affected.
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Old 05-28-2006, 02:46 PM   #10
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Re: I'm exhausted...*long*

How long did you keep him on the reflux meds?? Sometimes they take awhile to take effectiveness, or he might need the dosage upped, as they are VERY weight sensitive...just because he doesn't spit up doesn't mean he doesn't have reflux, it could be silent reflux, with no spitting up, esp if he is eating solids so well...I would call your Dr or nurse...
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