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Thread: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    West Virginia

    Default Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    LO is 4 weeks old. Was 3 weeks 4 days premature. Has gained well and is totally breastfed by my daughter. I give him 2 3 oz bottles of her milk during the night.

    The problem is, he will NOT sleep anywhere but in our arms. I can understand how nice this is for him, but I feel he's not getting good sleep and we sure need a rest.

    He will nurse a number of times, some for comfort, and fall asleep on her breast or chest. When either she or I try to move him into his bed, he wakes and cries to the point of screaming.

    Even if we didn't attempt to move him, what he's getting in our arms or on her breast is catnaps. He's not getting a good 1-3 hour nap at any point during the day. I think this is part of why he is crying so much. He's really exhausted. As are we!

    Do any of you have any ideas how to get him to sleep in his bed? Or at least somewhere other than someone's arms? We have tried the car seat, the swinging cradle, and the bassinet. We have swaddled him.

    Very occasionally, he will actually sleep in his bed. And it seems so much more of a restful sleep for him. But it has happened rarely.

    Thanks for any input or ideas.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Northern Cal.

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    I don't have a lot of advice, but lots of sympathy. My baby was like this. A very light sleeper, who never slept for long, and almost always ON a person. It was a triumph when he started sleeping NEXT to me and touching me, rather than ON TOP of me. His bassinet became a fancy dog bed. I coslept for sheer survival. I tried everything, and some things worked great (a baby carrier like the Moby) and others (any type of non-human surface ) never really did.

    He was a really alert, bright baby. He just wasn't a sleeper! Now he's a really wide awake and active boy, always busy!

    At 2.5 years old, he sleeps pretty darn well (especially by his standards!), usually sleeping through the night in his own bed. But I really had to adjust my perception of "normal" infant sleep. Luckily I had some friends with similar babies to commiserate with. Swaddling, baby wearing, and cosleeping (for naps too in the early days, because I was tired!) eventually morphed into sleeping on his own in the crib. But it took a while.

    I'd keep experimenting with different things. Even if this baby is a really light difficult sleeper, I can tell you, things will change up, and he'll get more independent as time goes on.

    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Landof2toddlers, Oregon

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    Scientifically speaking deep sleep is not healthy sleep for a baby. A baby who rouses more is less likely to suffer SIDS. A baby who slept soundly when we were cavemen would have been eaten by a predator. Real scientific studies of healthy infant sleep around the world show that frequent rousing, short sleep periods and near constant contact with a person are the norm.

    I am not sure why your daughter is not night nursing but the best thing she can do for supply and to get sleep is to nurse lying down in bed with the baby. I am also (sorry if this sounds harsh) worried that you are undermining your daughters confidence by telling her it is her fault he is fussy and "not sleeping well" (I know this is not what you men but I also know that new mom's see any questioning like you are doing as blame). This is a brand new baby adjusting to life outside the womb. He needs to be held and fed and time to get used to the world. I suggest a moby wrap he can sleep in while mom does her thing and to free her arms up. He can also nurse in there. DD spent daylight hours in there for her first three months (like a baby joey in a pouch) and her nights in the bed with me.
    proud but exhausted working mammy to two high needs babies

    • my surprise baby: the one and only D-Man born 3 weeks late (5/5/08) at 9 lbs 14 oz and 21.5 inches, and
    • the shock H-Girl born about a week late (10/7/09) at 8lbs 15oz and 20.75 inches.

    If I am here I am covered in baby (probably two) and fighting for control of the keyboard.

    Family beds are awesome

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    cat-naps are typical, especially in the early weeks. I think we all just go into survival mode until they start to develop a routine. Have you tried swaddling? Sometimes babies are more easily transferred to a bassinet/crib/bed if they are swaddled. I found it easier to have my lo fall to sleep on my chest in my bed and then roll him off of me so I could sneak out of the room for a little while. Have you heard of side-caring a crib? (the link has safe ways of doing this) Basically, you take one side off of the crib and attach it to mama's bed, that way baby has a safe place to sleep but he is still close to mama (and mama can scoot him over and catch some zzzzz

    When you lay a baby down to a lower surface they feel like they're floating and they often startle awake. I always found it easier to start off in the place where my son was going to sleep and then I could remove myself from that place if I wanted to.

    mother of 2 boys!

    Birth: 7lbs 12oz, 1 year: 22lbs 11oz
    until he self-weaned 4 days before his third birthday ... still on occasion ... and happily

    ************************************************** ************************************************** *****************
    People need to understand that when they're deciding between breastmilk and formula, they're not deciding between Coke and Pepsi.... They're choosing between a live, pure substance and a dead substance made with the cheapest oils available. ~Chele Marmet

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    Newborns catnap all day and night. That's pretty normal. Will he sleep in bed with mom, nursing? Both of my babies slept just great next to me nursing. They would wake up and at first I would have to sit up to nurse them, but when I figured out how to nurse them laying down, I hardly had to wake up at all.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Northern Cal.

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    I agree that for most women, it's better for supply to nurse at night. The sound of my baby waking and crying would wake me up anyway, so I might as well nurse him myself. And if you keep the baby very close to you, it's also a lot more restful to do that than to pump instead.

    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    with the PPs. Before my first baby was born, I was adamant that she was going to sleep in her crib every night. My determination to make that happen lasted less than 24 hours. Midway through her first day outside the womb, I was co-sleeping with her in the hospital bed, because I didn't have the energy to swaddle her up and put her back in the bassinet. With my second- born, I didn't even bother with a crib until she was about 6 months old. It was so much easier to sleep with her!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  8. #8

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    great advise above, my DS is 9mo and NEVER has he stayed asleep for more than 30min if he wasnt being held or sleeping next to me. I just look at it like: one day they wont *WANT* to sleep next to me

    it wont last forever
    Im Jenn
    Mamma To:
    Kelsey BF 3 months
    Kenneth BF 3 months
    Blaze BF 3.5 years (tandem)
    Bristol BF 3.5 years (tandem)
    Raiden BF 15months & counting


    In need of some


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    My baby is fed via bottles and he is a crummy sleeper. Bottles aren't going to help. It would be easier to just give in and let baby nurse at night by setting them up to safely cosleep.

    Baby wearing helps. My babies take great naps in a sling.
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2010

    Default Re: Will not sleep in a (his) bed

    just wanted to add another regarding night nursing.

    in my experience, night nursing has really helped me to get her back to sleep quickly at night, especially after 6 months of age. a point no one has brought up yet...i know you just want to do the best for both of them, but my concern would be, your daughter isnt getting the experience of night nursing/dealing with night waking baby...are you going to be there helping at night for the entire first year? b/c if not, i think letting her learn to nurse and/or get baby back to sleep at night on her own is an invaluable skill for the future.
    Can't believe I've been and a full-time SAHM to Elena (5/2010) for over 2 yrs!
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