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  5. I feel like I am the worst Mother EVER

I feel like I am the worst Mother EVER Lock Rss

My boy is 4 months old. He has been wrapped from day one, and has had a dummy since about 4 weeks. And has never ever slept very well since birth.

For the last 5 weeks he has continued to wake every 45 minutes during the day, and about every 2-3 hours during the night. I am completly sleep deprived and slowly lossing faith in my parenting ability. He is happy for only half an hour once he wakes because he obviously needs more sleep. I only manage about 1 our of 5 times to resettle him and get him back into a good sleep, and that can take me around half an hour to and hour.

I have been re admitted to hospital, a sloeep day stay unit, have read a million books and just yesterday went to a child psychologist who mind you cost me $156 an hour.

I have just done a million changes to my babys routine, and i can't help but second guess most if not all of my parenting skills. I am in tears right now. I feel horrible. I have tried lettingm y baby cry himself to sleep, and now am feeling guilty for letting him do that, and have now decided to refuse to do that. I have tryed taking his dummy away and now he has decided to suck his lip and has a very red lip and i feel horrible for that.

This stupid psychologist told me yesterday that babies who have sleep problems are connected with ADD and ADHD, so now i am constantly worried about that. Really I am going insane. Any other mummies feel like this?

Your baby has only been in this world for 4 months so is still learning things like how to sleep properly etc. Dont listen to the psychologist saying that, it is ridiculous for them to say a 4 month old will have ADD because they havent learned to sleep well yet.
Also, dont question your parenting ability because, like your bubs, you have only been at this for 4 months and you are still learning too. I have found pretty much all of motherhood is hit and miss, your bubs has a problem and you try something, it doesnt work, so you try something else and so on until you hit on the thing that works best for your bubs.
I know its hard but you are not alone in feeling exhaustion, but it does get better, give it time and dont give up. When it gets to much, dont be ashamed to ask family or friends for help. Even if you just ask them to come over in the day to watch bubs while you catch up on an hour of rest.

Good luck smile
You seem like an amazing mum to me! Its obvious that you love him and care for him so much. It sounds like you need a bit of a break yourself so that you can be more relaxed. I think the right thing to do is to go with your gut instincts and everything will fall into place. No one knows him like you do. The best advice I've been given is to say "yes" every time someone offers help. Things will get easier- in a couple of months he'll be starting on solids and he won't wake up hungry as much.
I know its easy for us who have been through all this before to tell you that it will get easier but thats not much consolation for you at the moment.

First of all, stop listening to others, stop reading books and start listening to your gut instinct as a mother. You are far from being a bad mum, the feelings you are having are a sign that you are a fantastic mum who genuinely cares for your baby. That is why its distressing you so much. As a suggestion, have you considered taking him to a chiropractor? Especially if you might have had a long or difficult labour or if he was born via c-section. Have known of countless mums at their wits end who have given this a go with amazing results. Are you breast or bottle feeding? Congratulations if you are breast feeding but dont feel too despondant if you have to give the bottle a go.

Chin up, in a few months time you will look back and realize it wasnt 'that bad' besides thats why we go back for a 2nd and 3rd time, its all forgotten until we are going throuhg it again! lol

My boy is 4 months old. He has been wrapped from day one, and has had a dummy since about 4 weeks. And has never ever slept very well since birth.

For the last 5 weeks he has continued to wake every 45 minutes during the day, and about every 2-3 hours during the night. I am completly sleep deprived and slowly lossing faith in my parenting ability. He is happy for only half an hour once he wakes because he obviously needs more sleep. I only manage about 1 our of 5 times to resettle him and get him back into a good sleep, and that can take me around half an hour to and hour.

I have been re admitted to hospital, a sloeep day stay unit, have read a million books and just yesterday went to a child psychologist who mind you cost me $156 an hour.

I have just done a million changes to my babys routine, and i can't help but second guess most if not all of my parenting skills. I am in tears right now. I feel horrible. I have tried lettingm y baby cry himself to sleep, and now am feeling guilty for letting him do that, and have now decided to refuse to do that. I have tryed taking his dummy away and now he has decided to suck his lip and has a very red lip and i feel horrible for that.

This stupid psychologist told me yesterday that babies who have sleep problems are connected with ADD and ADHD, so now i am constantly worried about that. Really I am going insane. Any other mummies feel like this?


Oh love i have to tell you - get rid of the child psychologist! All you are doing is handing her money for nothing! Your baby is only 4 months old for crying out loud - dont listen to that crap she is telling you about ADHD - its all s**t!

I understand where you are coming from as i had PND up until my son was 2 months old (he is now 4 months) and what i found helpful was setting a strict routine (to the minute) and staying with it no matter what. It was a hard road getting there but after 2 weeks my son knew what was coming so fell into the routine quite easily. Here what i do:
7am - wake up and feed. 8.15am back to bed till 9.45am (he does not get out of bed no matter how much he cried - after 2 weeks he stopped crying cos he realised it wasent getting him anywhere and i wouldnt pick him up)
10am - feed then a kick with no nappy on for exercise. 11am - walk in the pram till 12pm where he will sleep for about 1/2 an hour. then back home and more play time. 1pm feed then 1.30 off to bed till at least 3.30pm. If he wants to sleep till 4pm thats fine. 4pm feed then more play time. Then 5.30pm walk in the pram where he has another little sleep. 6pm bathtime then cuddles and quite time. 6.45pm feed then bed at 7pm. About once a fortnight he will wake for a feed in the night so i feed him and change his nappy and he goes straight back to bed - i dont talk to him or smile at him, he get no response from me as this is not a play time. Other wise he sleeps thru till about 7am.
To start it is hard listening to them cry but you have to switch off and ignore it. My son can put some real effort into his scream but it only takes me about 5 min before he just goes to sleep again. If he wakes up i go straight in and pat his bum so he knows im there. I never leave him to scream on his own. I take a book in with me so i can read while patting him bum and waiting it out.
I know some people will frown at me for this but hey, my son sleeps for 12 hours a night so i must be doing something right aye!
Also, i do not deviate from this routine - EVER! I figure 6 months of me giving up any kind of social life is an easy thing to do if i have a child who is happy and well rested will lead to a child who will sleep anywhere because he knows when bed time it.
Good luck and i hope this helps you.
Both my girls aren't good sleepers so you're definitely not alone there. I'm not sure if it's something I do or don't do but I'm hoping by the next one I'll have the secret grin If you're not getting much sleep now then you have nothing to loose by trying to stick to a routine like Paulahm suggests. I wish I'd done that with my 2nd DD but she is getting better. Or she was til she started cutting teeth!
They always seem to settle down around 6mths and maybe once solids are introduced that may help too. He doesn't have reflux or silent reflux does he? And I think that ADHD and babies that don't sleep link is a load of bull!
Keep up the good work and you sound like a fantastic caring mum who's doing a great job.
Hi

You have just described my first DD. I too tried to do as the books said and thought what am I doing so wrong that she wont do what the books say? She just wouldnt sleep like they suggested she should, not even close. Our turning point was after a good 2 months of trying to force a routine onto her and try to get her to sleep as the books suggested... was to let it go and go with the flow. Every baby is unique, a one size fits all approach does not work. Some babies respond to the routines in books and some dont. After we decided this the stress in our house reduced dramatically. Our first DD slept 40 mins max during the day, you could set your watch by her and at night she'd also wake 2-3 hourly.

So what we did was during the day if she woke after 40 mins we'd get her up, feed her if that's what she wanted and then after an hour or so try and put her back to bed - we rocked her for a few mins and off she went. The thing I learnt was it was all about getting the right timing for our bub, some babies can handle more awake time than others, some less... oh and just when you figure out what a good rythym is... it changes smile By about six months our DD got a lot more settled and didnt want rocking to sleep anymore. The only consistent timing in her day was a 7pm bedtime and that has served us well in the long run, she's now four and still goes to bed at 7pm, 6.45pm if I can swing it - she was a hard case in the first 6-8 months but since then has been a very good sleeper. Once they hit six months or so you can drop to two day sleeps and bed by 7pm. I think it gets a bit easier then but at 4 months they are still so new and going through growth spurts all the time (4 months is a big growth spurt).

Personally I dont think under six months you can impose a rigid routine that does not allow to get them out of the cot no matter how much they cry, all that does is teach them to give up and that they cant rely on you because no matter how much they cry you arent going to help them. There are too many variables at this young age, growth spurts, developmental leaps, possibly teething and needing closeness... that's a biggie and sometimes a bit of rocking is all it takes to sooth them. No "expert" recommends controlled crying under six months, patting their bum or not, you might be patting their bum but that's not actually dealing with why they are crying, that's telling them that's all your going to do so dont bother crying. I think the only thing they learn is to give up and that's a bit sad.

So my advice is if baby only wants to sleep 45 mins and wont resettle then dont persist with trying, if its taking up to an hour then obviously sleep is not what baby wants to do. It was amazing the weight that lifted from our shoulders when we gave up the expectation that baby must sleep longer than that. All was well when she didnt!

With our second DD it was a completely different story... because she was a completely different baby. Straight away she slept for longer periods of time, she took larger volume feeds, the only thing we did differently was a dreamfeed at 10pm and I think that worked a treat. It made a lot more sense to get her up and feed her before we went to bed rather than go to bed and be woken up shortly after. And she started sleeping through at 4 months, is now 18 months and has been sleeping from 7pm till around 7-8am since. We didnt bother with resettling her during the day at all, once she woke we got her up.

Sorry for the long post but just wanted to let you know that you are not alone, you are not doing it wrong, no one tells you how hard it will be and your baby hasnt read any of the books - so work out what works for him and go with the flow. I know it doesnt seem like it but it wont be like this forever... best wishes and dont be so hard on yourself smile
You poor thing - dont be so hard on yourself. It's hard especially with your first baby just learning to be a mum. Obviously you care very about your bub otherwise you wouldnt be asking for help!

dont listen to that child psych - what an awful thing to say and even more to someone suffering severe sleep deprivation!

some babies are born settled and others arent! i have had both. My 1st was extremely unsettled, never slept night or day.... well 2 hours a night only and i have never been so tired in my life - it was torture. he had terrible silent reflux, maybe your bub has something like that? we didnt know that though we just thought the not sleeping and crying was normal. anyway along with colic which he had infacol for he started taking medication for reflux and became more settled. he was also a breech baby and could only turn his head one way so went to chiro which sorted out his neck and colic. he slept for 6 hours that night at 3 months - it was his longest sleep ever.

we went to a sleep school for a day at 3months then back for a week at 5 months. they really helped and to this day he is a great self settler - he wasnt before that as he associated lying down with pain from his reflux. we came home with a routine and a baby who slept - they truly saved my life.

some tips
- throw away books
- dont see that psych again
- try chiro
- if people ask 'is he a good baby?' (i hate that qu!) tell them no he doesnt sleep and im exhausted but i love him anyway .... they may offer to help or have some good advice
- do you have family who can hold him so you can sleep in the day for a few hours?
- if you have a trusted dr have a chat about possibility of reflux

what state are you in? if you are in WA contact Ngala they are great.

dont lose confidence in yourself, there are lots of us who have been through this so we understand how you are feeling and are here to support you

Good luck x
If you are in Sydney you could call Tresillian or Karitane. Even if you're not there should be some sort of organistion in your state and they're number should be on the back of your baby's health book (blue book).
Also just a suggestion, my some hates being wrapped. The most he will sleep at night wrapped is 1-2 hrs but he is a great sleeper unwrapped. Have you tried that? You never know what might work. Also some babies sleep better in their mums bed.
Baby steps...sometimes to cheer up a bit I read this, or anything be Elizabeth Pantley-

http://www.askdrsears.com/html/7/t070300.asp

Because even when it feels like nothing is improving, the tiny little changes and gradations you keep making are making a difference in the long run smile

Being calm, aware of your baby, and content that you two will get through this alive is half the battle! I always think that so long as I'm calm and happy, my baby isn't going to need to breastfeed to sleep/have a dummy/sleep in my bed when she's 7 years old!- there is an ending to this period in their lives and your job is to get you both through this period.

I keep a list of things to check on with bubs in the night- same music/dry nappy/fed/warm/wrapped, and we're working on how she gets to sleep. Progress with settling is the important bit- if the rest of the boxes are ticked then I know I'm a good mum and being a great (better rested!) mum is the next step. NOT "if my baby sleeps through the night, I'll be considered a good mother." (that is bulls*** and cut anyone out who tells you otherwise!)
Sorry to hear about all that you are going through. Sleep deprivation is such a ngihtmare. It can feel like you are the only one on the planet going through it but believe me - we know what you are going through. You sound like you are doing such a great job trying to find out what is wrong and obviously love your baby boy. He sounds just like my DS was earlier on. It was all hit & miss at first trying to find out what was wrong. Turned out he had/has severe reflux & was in pain with burning acid coming up when lying down. We elevated everything and he was put on Losec which worked brilliantly. I found when I weaned him from BF onto a bottle of formula at night he would sleep for longer. Another issue was that his shoulder and neck were out from his emergency c-section delivery - went & saw a chiro & physio about that which seemed to help. Also is the room he sleeps in warm enough? My son never slept well on his own at first. It is only in the last month or two that he has been going down in his cot & sleeping through. I used to give up & just put him in the bed with us - he would always fall fast asleep on my chest where he was warm and could hear my heartbeat. Just know it will get better I promise. Feel free to chat or vent anytime!

Hi, just to ease your mind - the only PROVEN links to ADD/ADHD and childrens developmental milestones are if they skip crawling and go straight to walking. Its something to do with the two halves of the brain communicating when crawling.
It also DOESN'T mean that just cos they DON'T crawl they are going to get ADD/ADHD, its just one of the main links they have found in common with many of the kids with these problems.
My goodness - could you imagine just how prevalent this issue would have been FOREVER if sleep was the trigger? It is a relatively new diagnosis - only about the past 20 yrs so...
hope that eases some of your concerns - bet it doesn't make you feel great about spending all that money, sorry.
Keep faith - you will sort it all out very soon, OR bubs will grow out of it grin

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