Attachment Issues

Updated on March 21, 2007
F.G. asks from Austin, TX
9 answers

My baby girl is almost 7 months old. She has always gone to sleep on her own and was always very good about sleeping through the night. However, lately she has been screaming when I put her down to bed by herself. She wants to be held more often and she wakes up a lot at night. We just moved into a new house last weekend, so I'm wondering if the new place has her off balance. I made sure to take her to the new house and we spent a lot of time here together before we moved in so that she could get used to it. Also, I made sure that I surrounded her with familiar objects to make the transition easier. I just don't know what to do. I never wanted to let her scream it out, but that seems to be the only way she'll go to sleep on her own. I also read somewhere that around 7 months babies begin to become attached to their mothers and fathers (or those giving them constant care). We have always had a consistent routine with her so that she always feels secure, and sometimes we try to rock her to sleep. That used to work, but lately when we try to rock her she makes her body stiff and she gets mad. I tried giving her her pacifier and rubbing and patting her back and butt, but she won't let me do that. I'm at my wits end. I can't hold her all day long no matter how much I want to. Any ideas about on how to get my baby back to normal?

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So What Happened?

Thanks to everybody for your comments. I tried giving her a message after bath time with special focus on her legs. (She did just start cruising recently so they're probably sore.) Also, I had noticed her chewing a lot lately, so I also gave her a little Tylenol. She ate once right before bed, and then slept 10 hours last night! I was elated! Also, I put her in a front carrier today and have been carrying her around with me. She's a lot more relaxed. She fell asleep for a nap today without a peep. I just layed her down as soon as she was out, and she slept for about an hour which is usual for her. Thanks again!

More Answers



answers from Odessa on

I am also 23 SAHM and I have a baby girl who is almost 9 months. Your issue sound like what I was going through and still am it's just a phase they go through a little bit of independence. I used to rock my baby to sleep she won't let me do it anymore. She's on a schedule still but she just plays until she gets tired. Falls asleep drinking her bottle, just don't lay them down until your sure they are asleep.
At night a bath helps to relax, I don't like to let her nap after 7 p.m. She is usually in bed by 10p.m. I used to have trouble sleeping myself because she needed her night feeding. I stopped doing that around 6 months. She is a wild sleeper so I don't leave any toys or anything in her bed. She whines a bit so I turn her baby monitor on my end as low as I can because i'm a light sleeper. She has had some bad nights when I have to wake up when she was cold or she is also teething, so I just comfort her and she goes back to sleep, I don't usually turn on the light because she may think it's okay to wake up. She wakes when my husband kisses her in the morning between 4 a.m. and 7 a.m. but I just leave her until 8 a.m. she sometimes plays and sometimes cries a bit but goes back to sleep.



answers from San Antonio on

Is it possible she is teething?



answers from Wichita Falls on

Ferrel G,
I have a 15-month old little boy and we have gone through the same thing you are describing. He goes through times every couple of months where he has seperation anxiety from Me and my husband. He wakes up screaming wanting us to come into his room and hold him. I talked to our pediatrician who said it is just a stage and we have to let him cry it out for a few nights. We go in the first time to make sure everything is ok (no fever, give him his pacifier, cover him up, get him a drink, etc.), then that's it. He cries for about 3-minutes and then figures out we are not coming back, so he goes back to sleep. If you keep going in to comfort them, they will continue to wake up and think they need you to go back to sleep. It is very hard, but you have to be strong and they will be better sleepers for it. Hope this helps.



answers from Philadelphia on

I can feel your pain but in a different way. I used to co-sleep with my daughter and when we switched to her crib, she started getting upset with me and my husband. She would cry and we would go pick her up and rock her back to sleep (even if it took until midnight). Finally, when she hit near six months, we decided to do a softer version of Ferber's technique. I think babies are smarter than we give them credit for. Your baby may know by now that her screaming or crankiness will result in more love from you.

Am I rambling? Anyway - I am also a SAHM. So, during the day, I flood my precious princess with love and attention and when her routine bedtime occurs and she cries, I go in as scheduled, but no more. This has been going on for over a week now, but she seems very happy and secure.

If you have to let her cry a tiny bit, it will be okay. It hurts us more than it hurts them.

This is such a sketchy subject, but I hope I at least let you know that you are not alone in your struggle.



answers from El Paso on

Even with the steady routine that you have her on, the move just put a huge rift in it. She had her space where she slept before and now it isn't the same.

As far as attachments beginig at around 7 months old, I'm a SAHM to 5 children. I've never experienced that with any of them. The only times I've experienced the excessive need to be held was when there was a shift in their routine. And more often then not, it was due to a move. It happened with 2 of my children.

As far as what could possibly help, try music or something that you know normally helps to soother her. I'd like to recommend Baby Einstein or Little Einstein. My children are very fond of it and it helps to relax even the oldest, and he is 11. If that doesn't help. Go to your local Wal-Mart. In the furniture area they have a collection of CD's. Many are of different regions around the world and some are simply soothing noises in nature and stuff like that. Those may help as well.



answers from Dallas on

I do belive in letting my kids cry it out (with in reason), however when my 1st son was around the same age he figured out that if he screamed we would come running. And scream he did. Nothing was wrong he just didn't want to go to bed. We had to let him scream it out and after a few weeks he quit.

Also, have you considered that she might be teething? That's when I usually see the biggest attachment/personality changes in my son.



answers from Odessa on

I wouldn't let her cry it out, unless you feel that it's simply a temper tantrum. Maybe if you put her in her bed, and you sit in a chair beside the bed to talk, sing, and pat. My youngest child had to be held all of the time, and she acts like a very happy, secure child now. She's almost 8 years old, and thinks that she can take on the world. She still wants me around her the majority of the time, but what I mean to say, is that the attachment didn't really "spoil" her. In fact, if you go to and look up The Natural Child Project, you will find some information about your issue, and why the extreme closeness with your baby is a great idea. I don't know if I've been helpful, but just remember that every baby is different, and they go through crazy changes just like we do.



answers from Waco on

Your baby girl is probly just a little anxious about the new home i know that when we moved both of my boys seemed to have restless sleep. They would both wake up in the night and want to get in bed with us but i was consistant with them and they are now used to it.



answers from San Antonio on

Every baby is diffrent and moving could have caused some of her behavior. However, babies learn after awhile if I cry they will pick me up. I have been through this twice with my own babies. The best thing you can do is be consitant, the routine, fimiluar things, check diaper, think when was last feeding,does she have a fever? and if you did all that then its ok to let her cry, this will drive you nuts for the first week but in time will get better. She will learn that when it is time for bed, that it is time for bed eventually waking up less.

Next question: What Are Other People's Self-soothing Techniques for Helping Baby to Bed?