A.B. asks from Newark, CA on April 24, 2009
9 Month Old Will Not Sleep in Crib!
Do any of you mothers have any suggestions for me. My 9 month old son will NOT sleep in his crib. He will only sleep if he is in my bed with either myself, or husband with him, primarily me. He is extremely attached. You see, when he was 6 months old and nearly hospitalized. At that time, the doctor wanted us to keep a very close eye on him and keep him at our bedside to watch his breathing. Well, because of him sleeping in bed w/ us, he got so used to it that he will not sleep on his own. he is still nursed. I've tried the crying it out method, rocking, and as soon as I put him in the crib, he wakes up and cries. once in a while, he will sleep in there, but for only 25-30 minutes. I cannot keep laying down next to him, i have a 3 y/o at home to care for, in addition to other children I provide care for. So, I am afraid he is not getting enough sleep. he goes to bed at night anywhere between 7:30-8:30. The problem is that, because he has such short naps, he is overly tired and sometimes has a hard time falling asleep for his afternoon nap and sometimes bed for the night. Please help!!
So What Happened?™
I appreciate the responses. I don't mind him sleeping with us, but 4 kids later, and a busy day with the childcare, I would appreciate the bed to me and the hubby. Again, I don't mind him sleeping with us, I am also doing if for safety reasons. If he is used to our bed, I'm afraid that at nap time he will fall off the bed! So, here's an update. In the past few days, I did put him in his crib at nap time during the day and for two days in a row, he slept for 2.5 hours. And, at night after bath time, I nursed him a little bit, and he fell asleep in his crib! AMAZING. It all started a few nights back when I left to bible study for the evening, and got back late after chatting with the girls. He was half asleep with my husband when I got in bed, then heard me and woke up very happy to see me. I cuddled and kissed him for a bit. Then I was TIRED so it was time for bed, unfortunately, he didn't want to sleep and wanted to play peek a boo but I could not, for the life of me, stay awake, so I put him in his crib, he fell asleep in a minute! That's the second time he's done that in the past month. So, I think he put together the thought of night time and the crib. He is once again napping in there right now:) I will try some of the pointers you all gave if this doesn't stay consistent, on his end:) Thanks again!
J.P. answers from San Francisco on April 27, 2009
Sounds like you don't enjoy bed sharing, but maybe if you opened up yourself to the idea, you'd feel ok with letting him just sleep with you. My 10 month old still sleeps with my husband and I (our conscious choice), and we love it! Some nights are hard, but most of the time I love all those cuddles! I've just found that it's easier to go along with what feels good for the baby than fight it - I actually end up relaxing and enjoying myself! Good luck!
J.E. answers from San Francisco on April 25, 2009
My son also hated his crib! At a year old, we got him a toddler bed, and a new mattress and he never once wanted to sleep with us again.
My advice is to check the mattress in the crib. It may not be comfortable. The first mattress we had was as hard as a rock :( we were advised that it would be safe against SIDS. We could stand on it and it wouldn't depress down at all. When we got a different mattress, we got one that wasn't as soft as our bed, but definitely more comfy and that helped our son move.
Good luck. J.
K.J. answers from San Francisco on April 25, 2009
ok try putting a warm hot water bottle in his crib
(wrapped in the baby's cover). The key is the night before, you and your husband sleep with the baby's cover in your bed close to your body. Now take that same cover and put in his bed with a hot water bottle wrapped in 1 piece of the cover and the other cover put on the baby in the crib and tuck the cover to make him feel secure. I hope this helps.
J.C. answers from Sacramento on April 25, 2009
I wish I could give you a simple "This always works" answer to get him to sleep in his crib, but if that exists I sure haven't found it. I have 5 boys and all 3 of my youngest ones have done this same thing. My 4 year old was the first to refuse the crib, I tried everything to get him to sleep in his crib, but when he would fall asleep and go in his crib he was up within an hour.
I finally decided to give them what they needed. Babies don't manipulate, so there is no harm in responding to their needs. So he doesn't want to sleep in a crib, I really can't blame him those mattresses are not the most comfortable and being in a cage doesn't sound all that great either. He eventually got old enough to move out of our bed and into the room with his brothers. That was at about 15 months or so. He still tried to sneak in in the middle of night for awhile, but once he was old enough to understand we just told him he was a big boy and could sleep in his own bed. As infants you can't tell them that, but as toddlers they can understand.
My 9 month old sleeps in our bed most nights. I do put him with his brothers, or in his swing so his dad and I can have "alone time". But he always ends up with us. Once he gets old enough to understand we will "wean" him and put him in his own bed like the others. But for now he is comfy cozy in with us.
B.R. answers from Sacramento on April 25, 2009
I wonder if part of the problem may be that your household is too busy with all the other children and he doesn't feel he gets enough time with you during the day. I do home childcare too. We have our three grandchildren and one other child at the present time, and I know how busy it can get. It sounds like your household is at least that busy. I'm thinking what I would try is to get him used to the crib during daytime naps for right now, and not stress too much over having him in the bed with you at night, as long as you and your husband can handle doing it that way. Or you might just want to consider scrapping the crib idea at all. We have fold up cots for our childcare nap times and when our grandson was about six or seven months old we started putting him on one of those cots for naps. He loved it. At home, he was using a crib, but also sleeping part of each night in his parents' bed. Now at 19 months of age, he has his own twin sized bed at home... a trundle bed that's been fastened so that it won't pop up to a regular bed height, so is low to the floor and safe in case he rolls out at night. You might want to consider just having a cot for your little guy for daytime naps and move that to your room at night so you can try to put him in it for part of the night to get him used to sleeping alone. Then move him into a larger bed in his own room... but one close to the floor, even if you just put a mattress directly on the floor until he's old enough to handle a higher bed.
The cots we are using, in case you're interested, are from the Regalo company. We purchased them from WalMart online and had the free delivery to our local store. They cost about $30 each and are much better than the type of daycare stack up cots that most centers use. We have found them easier to store, and we like them for sleeping because they are a bit higher off the floor than the stack up kind, and we feel that's better for the children. Another bonus is that if any of the children are going to be traveling, it's easy to fold up the cot and take it along for a familiar bed to sleep on while they are away. (Of course we limit that to our own grandchildren).