Sleep Ideas

  • My little girl-Melody is 13.5 months. She has never slept through the night. I know we created a bad habit with middle of the night feedings but she is a special case when it comes to eating due to medical issues (GERD, food allergies, sinus issues, ENT issues, failure to thrive). I have gotten the go ahead from her doctors and specialists to go ahead and start to wean the middle of the night feedings as she is no longer classified as a failure to thrive and medication seems to be helping her conditions. Wahoo!

    Anyway the last 3 months she awakes between 1-4 AM and will not go back to sleep unless she has a middle of the night play session ranging in time from 30 minutes to 2 hours.

    I have taken her to the doctors multiple times and all I ever get: "some babies don't sleep through the night until they are 2 years old. Its perfectly normal... blah blah"

    I have tried everything I can think of including warm formula, humidifier, white noise, rocking her, rubbing her back, giving her a paci,  re-doing her bed time routine, wearing her out til she passes out. I have even let her try to cry it out but she just screams for over two hours with no stopping until she gets her play session.

    She started daycare when she turned a year, so about 6 weeks ago. Daycare does a nap/quiet time from 11-2. My daughter usually naps 30 minutes in the time frame of 1130-130, and its her only nap of the day. She goes to sleep between 730-830 - just usually passes out after bathtime.

    Any suggestions or advice on how to help her sleep through the night or to help wean the middle of the night feedings. I am hitting my wits end, I work full time 12 hours shifts (MWF) and every other Saturday and can't take much more of this, I am physically exhausted and 4 months pregnant.

  • Wow... first of all, I feel great sympathy because it's exhausting just reading your posts. I guess my first thought if docs say there is nothing physically wrong is to get you help more than Melody. Is there a family member or close friend you trust to possibly give you a more frequent break to get some true sleep? The middle of the night play session is something that you recognize has to end but I am also stumped at the moment. What about playing for an hour, then cutting short by about 10 minutes each subsequent time and eventually after a week or so, you have her down to a five minute play time. Does she scream after only a half hour if you put her in? Do you let her play until she collapses? Hoping someone on Strongmoms can help you better than me!

  • You poor thing!  You must be exhausted!  One thing that's helped us with our 2 year old is the toys that project the stars on the ceiling (dreamlites).  After we transitioned her into a big girl bed she had trouble going to sleep because she wanted to play.  The stars on the ceiling gave her something to look at and talk to, so it was kind of like having something to play with.  It's easy for her to turn on by herself (just push a button on its back), so if your daughter woke up in the middle of the night she could have a play session by herself while you slept.  You could also try letting her take a toy that she really likes to bed with her, again so she can play on her own while you get some sleep.  (Although this can turn bad if you lose the toy--we had a mini-meltdown the other night because we couldn't find Princess Belle :) )

    Good luck!!

  • Thanks for the advice. Answerdad, I have tried to call on support people but everyone I know is a flake. They say they will help and then when it comes time, they all of a sudden have different plans. It has happened so much I don't even ask anymore.  Sgmitch, I have a dreamlite for her her it doesn't do anything for her. I turn it on along with her mobile and she just continues on her mission.

    I hit my wits end the other day and had her daddy go in there for the first time. He told her to stop and when she didn't he gave her a spanking and put her in time out. He explained to her that these tantrums would not be rewarded. I tried this and it didn't help, but I think when daddy actually disciplined her for the first time it broke her little heart. She then fussed quietly for 15-20 minutes: then went right back to sleep. I put her to bed the next night and told her if she tantrums daddy will come in. She slept til 330 and awoke just her fer feeding which we are slowly weaning away: After her bottle she went straight to sleep. This has been the case for 3 nights now. Now I just got to figure how to completely wean the bottle!

    I can't believe how refreshed I feel getting some sleep.