17 answers

6 Month Old Cries at Every Nap/Bedtime

Okay, I am not a new mom, so I thought I knew how it goes with babies and sleep, but this one is throwing me a curve ball. We use the cry it out method (please, I know there are alternatives, but none of them worked for him), and it worked great. He was going down for naps and bedtime with no crying, sleeping long and well, waking happy. And actually, last night was the first time he only ate once at 2:45 a.m. But for the last few weeks, he cries EVERY time I put him down for sleep, and it's breaking my heart. I am okay with the idea of letting them cry to learn to sleep alone (we check on him every few minutes when he's upset), but with my first son, the crying stopped after about a week. I'm not sure I'm okay with him crying every time (5-30 minutes). Does anyone have any advice? Is this normal? He still takes nice long naps and wakes happy. Other factors: he is definitely teething. I give Motrin as often as recommended. He has a lovey. He is very mobile. We have a good nap and bedtime routine that we always stick to. I watch the clock and his tired signs and do not keep him up too long. He stays home with me. He's not hungry when I put him down. I'm not sure I'm helping him wind down very well. He doesn't really like books, and my 2.5 year old often is rambunctious and crazy while we're trying to wind down at nap time. Don't know what to do about that. Any advice, please!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Everyone, thank you for all of your responses. I really want to do what is best for him, and I do hate that he cries each time. I think there are a few things going on: 1) he can be awake longer now that he is older, so sometimes I am putting him down too early. 2) he is really teething pretty badly, and I am going to get some tylenol today so I can give something every three hours if needed. I also got some of the Hyland's teething tablets. 3) I bet having a big brother around makes him want to stay up and play. Soon they will be sharing a room--who knows how that will work out!

For those who suggested cosleeping or rocking him to sleep, I used to do both, but at about four months, he just wanted to play in bed with me, and suddenly rocking didn't work anymore. I would hold him, and he would writhe and scream. Very upsetting for both of us. He has always cried a lot; my first baby did not. I think part of it is personality, and I feel like he gets lots of good sleep, so I guess a few tears are worth it. I just want to minimize them if I can, you know?

Featured Answers

My first born cried all the time. Being a new mom I thought I had to get her to sleep in her own room... after all I did just decorate it for her. One night I finally gave up. My husband was deployed and I was exhausted, so I brought her into my bed. I haven't looked back since. I have two girls 4 and 2, and I have co slept with both of them. The 4 year old has transitioned into her own bed just fine, and now the 2 year old is starting to like her bed too. After I made the decision to co sleep everyone slept better, and my girls never cry to go to bed, in fact they like to go to bed now. I know co sleeping is a touchy subject with moms, but I love it and highly suggest doing some research to see if maybe it could work for you too. Dr. Sears has a lot of great information. Good luck!

3 moms found this helpful

My little guy has been "crying it out" for 6 months now. He cries himself to sleep for every nap and occasionly for bed. I spoke with my doc about it and he says that some kids just resist sleep and might cry it out for a long while. My baby always wakes up happy, so I stopped worrying. Good luck!

2 moms found this helpful

More Answers

okey, dokey....here's the deal: if it's bothering you, & since you are in charge of your own child.....do "what" feels best for you & your son. Forget what worked with your other child, forget what everybody recommends, ......just do what feels best. & if this means rocking your baby to sleep & then transferring to the bed....then do it! If you really want him to self-soothe & fall asleep on his own, then do it. As long as he's not harmed & kept emotionally/physically safe, then the method used is your choice....not our opinions.
With my oldest son, he NEVER/EVER fell asleep on his own...for the 1st year or longer! & woke crying as soon as we laid him in his bed...what a challenge! With our youngest, by 10 months, he was on his own & did not require rocking each night. Every child is different...& some children can self-soothe to sleep by 2 months or earlier. We were never that lucky, but it did not harm any of us...it simply meant more one-on-one time! Good Luck.

3 moms found this helpful

My first born cried all the time. Being a new mom I thought I had to get her to sleep in her own room... after all I did just decorate it for her. One night I finally gave up. My husband was deployed and I was exhausted, so I brought her into my bed. I haven't looked back since. I have two girls 4 and 2, and I have co slept with both of them. The 4 year old has transitioned into her own bed just fine, and now the 2 year old is starting to like her bed too. After I made the decision to co sleep everyone slept better, and my girls never cry to go to bed, in fact they like to go to bed now. I know co sleeping is a touchy subject with moms, but I love it and highly suggest doing some research to see if maybe it could work for you too. Dr. Sears has a lot of great information. Good luck!

3 moms found this helpful

My little guy has been "crying it out" for 6 months now. He cries himself to sleep for every nap and occasionly for bed. I spoke with my doc about it and he says that some kids just resist sleep and might cry it out for a long while. My baby always wakes up happy, so I stopped worrying. Good luck!

2 moms found this helpful

My first Grandson is just a bit younger than your little one...he was born Dec 11th...and his Mom is reporting that she is going through the same struggles with him right now. She has told me that he will no longer nap when they are anywhere but at home...and it is very difficult for her to nurse him if there is ANY activity going on around him at all. I think this age is just so durned interesting for them that they don't want to miss a thing. You have the added distraction of big brother in the house, so your baby has another reason not to give up and go to sleep. It is not possible to separate yourself from the toddler long enough to get the baby settled down so you may need to settle them BOTH down with some quiet activities..does your toddler like to be read to??? That would be something quiet that you could use to get everyone simmered down. How would a nice warm bath do....or bedtime right after everyone has eaten?? Good luck...and remember...this too shall pass!!!
R. Ann

2 moms found this helpful

He may just be in pain its why he is waking, you can always try the Hylands Teething Tablets (can be found at walgreens or walmart), they are homepathic and dissolve in the mouth and work wonders.

1 mom found this helpful

Babies are change artists. Just when you think you have something figured out they change. There are many reasons. They go through teething at various ages. They also go through growth spurts where they are legitimately hungry. On top of that they simply go through a stage where even though they may be able to roll or crawl, they still can't just get up and run around and boredom sets in easily. It's a big scary world that they have no personal control over. So they get scared and need comfort or maybe they just love being held by mommy. They can't tell time. So just because it's dark outside they aren't going to just sleep through the night just because they have for a few weeks. Your baby hasn't been alive long enough to have habits or to have learned how things ought to be.

Only you can choose to use the cry out method or get up with them. Obviously, if you go to them every time they open their peepers they will get used to that and have you running to them anytime it suits them. I guess I fall someplace between the 2 extremes. I believe that if there is no doubt they are tired, not hungry, not wet, not sick and they have had plenty of snuggling for the day, then letting them cry it out is ok. But this is a big list of things that need to be carefully monitored. It greatly distresses me to see so many moms.. and I don't mean you in particular... But in general it seems that so many moms are determined to get their own say with their children come hell or high water. But life isn't so black and white. Maybe I give in too much with my children. But it's easy in this world to feel unloved and neglected or just misunderstood and it starts when they are young.

S.

1 mom found this helpful

you said this has lasted the last few WEEKS...that seems to be a long time if he was "testing" you...i think it'd be breaking my heart by now too. you know, it might be that he's just not ready to go to sleep, and after this long, it might just be habit to cry for awhile, maybe. i have no idea lol. you didn't mention what his nap schedule is, but maybe he's getting to a phase where he doesn't need to sleep as much as you think? it might also just be that he loves his brother (the only person close to his size) and doesn't want to miss anything. just some thoughts. good luck, and hang in there. OH you know what you could do, get a video monitor for his sleeping area. it helped ease my mind a lot. good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

Is it possible that he has an ear infection? That is generally one of the only ways that we were able to tell with our daughter because she would not give us any other clues. I was hesitant to write this because it seems that once he went to sleep that he did not wake up a lot, but I thought that I would throw it out there.

1 mom found this helpful

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