Suggestions....please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Updated on April 03, 2008
G.M. asks from Springfield, VA
98 answers

Hello All,
I need some help. I am a first time mom and have NO idea what I am doing. I have a BEAUTIFUL, sweet and funny 12 week old baby girl.
I am having two issues that I need help with. First, my baby does not sleep during the day. She will take 20 minute cat naps here and there, but no long naps. She sleeps good at night, up to 6 hours at a time. Is this normal?
I can not get anything done during the day and by the time I put her down at night I am so exhausted that I go to bed too. I just went back to work, so things are starting to pile up (mostly laundry and dog hair.) I try to put her down while I do things, but if I am not holding her or if she can't see me then she is screaming. Do I just let her cry? If so, for how long? I literally get NOTHING done once I come home from work. My husband works evenings so I am by myself with the baby. She hates the swing...she will sit in the bouncy chair for about 10 minutes...am I just creating a monster? I have tried baby carriers...yeah, she hates those too. She is a really sweet baby; she just likes mama holding her.
My other question is for those who used a bassinet. When should I transfer her to the crib?
Thank you

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B.S.

answers from Roanoke on

I am a mother of a 3 and 5 year old. My suggestion is they are only that little once and the bonding is more important than anything else. Hold her and enjoy. Forget all the piled up work or bribe friends & family to help out. Always sleep when she sleeps!!! Tired mommies are cranky. Enjoy! B.

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L.R.

answers from Washington DC on

I found the book Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth to be extremely helpful when my son was an infant. I think every mother needs to make the decision about how to get their child to sleep and stay asleep based on their own beliefs, and this book offers many ways to do just that! Good luck!

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P.K.

answers from Norfolk on

Sorry you have to work.
How are things going now for you?
Crying isn't bad, they are smarter than ya think! Sometimes they have to sort things out for themselves while crying!
What does the babysitter do with her, it should be the same as you!
Some babies have faster metabolism and need to eat more and seem to sleep less.
Does she have a passy?
Congrates of that sweet little girl!

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A.F.

answers from Washington DC on

I had a daughter like yours. I tought newborns were supposed to just sleep and eat but not her. She was awake most of the day and slept about 6 or 7 hours at night. I breastfed her every two hours. She was very attached to me and did not want me out of her sight. So we did everything together. Hang in there! Don't plan on getting too much done during the day. At 4 months things get better because the baby can entertain herself more holding and sucking on things. About 6 months when she starts creeping or crawling she will sleep longer too. They grow up so fast. Just cherish the moment. You have an alert loving baby. AF

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R.T.

answers from Washington DC on

G.,

I second Amanda's recommendation to check out the GBMC mom's group. In addition to the weekly meetings the moms also have social functions outside of that - we have weekly potlucks and next week are having a moms' night out dinner date. I can give you contact info for the yahoo group if you're interested.

R.

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C.F.

answers from Washington DC on

Don't worry, you aren't going to create a monster and really, you do know what you're doing, you just have to trust yourself.
Take a deep breath and repeat 3 times whenever you are feeling otherwise. = )

I've been there with my first (she's 4 yrs old right now), and I'm going through it again with my second (just turned 5 months.) First, what is happening with her is completely normal - she's used to sleeping like that in utero (whe you moved/walked, you put her to sleep, little naps,etc.). My first would NOT let me put her down, except at night. Congratulations on her sleeping 6hrs+ at night - I know 14 month olds who are still waking every 2-3hours, so you have the makings of a great sleeper on your hands!

A book that helped me a lot was Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth. One thing I learned that I used with my first DD was that babies should be put to sleep after being up for about 1.5/2hours - your daughters cat naps, like mine, might be because she's overtired. I would try that, and let her cry for a few minutes the first time or two you try it - say 10 minutes (watch the clock and don't cheat, now.) Some kids will cry for a couple of minutes, then sack out - some kids are exceptions and will cry forever and make themselves sick over it. Give it a try once or twice to see if it will work for her. There are other good ideas and anecdotes in the book - you are not alone! - check it out of the library, or buy it for easy reference whenever you need it. I'd loan you mine, but with my new one, we're using it again.

Not all advice works with all kids - there are no 'absolutes', so try lots of things until you find what works for her, and for you and then stick with it. (That's another good mantra, for all the helpful advice you'll get through the years. = ) Also, she may not like the bouncy seat/swing/carrier today, but keep trying them, they change immensely in just a few days - once she can focus a little farther away and she can see the toys, etc, she might like them more (that is what happened with my new baby.)

Don't worry too much about the 'stuff' piling up - as long as you can still function (clothes to wear, food to eat) you'll be fine. My DH is doing a lot of traveling right now, leaves the country for a week or two at a time, and I can tell you that with working full time, the 4 yr old, the 5 month old and the dog, there is NO housework being done! You gotta choose your priorities (and keep your sanity.) I also have brought my neighbor's 13-yr old in as a 'mother's helper' for 3 days a week when he leaves. Extra hands to hold the baby while I cook, or set the table or keep the older child company at the dinner table while the baby has to be put to bed. A couple of my friends have done it and it has worked really well for them, so I've just started. So far, its great! The first day she came over, I gave the baby a bath and then took a shower - I think its the first time ever that I showered (when DH was gone) without thinking that the baby was crying, so even though it was quick, it was relaxing and wonderful! I highly recommend it if you have any neighbors kids that you could use. Mine comes over for only about 1-2 hours each night, which works perfectly for my needs and she still has plenty of time to do her homework each night.

The bassinet question: I moved my first into the crib from the bassinet at 8 weeks - we all slept better, keeping our little night noises to ourselves, with the monitor, they aren't as immediate, and you can decide whether you'll actully need to get up. She transitioned well, no problems. My second wouldn't sleep in the bassinet - ended up sleeping with us every night because she wanted to be held. I finally gave up on the bassinet and transitioned her right into the crib at between 10-12 weeks (I had already returned to work, so its kind of hazy due to lack of sleep = D ) In order to make it work, we had to wrap her arms snugly to her sides with a recieving blanket, but leave her feet free - a kinda half-swaddle. Over time, we left it so one arm was loose, only one snug against her, then loosely wrapped with rolled up blankets snugged up along her body starting under her armpits, now we're just at the point where we can take the rolled up blankets out of the crib entirely. (She just turned 5 months last Tuesday.)

Good luck - it isn't easy and it does go too fast, but when you're sleep deprived, I know it feels like it is taking forever! You are not alone!

I'm not far from you - off 7100 at RT 123 - if you need something, feel free to ping me. I'll help as best I can, even if it's only moral support. = )

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M.W.

answers from Washington DC on

Start letting her play by herself for 15 minutes or so and talk to her when she starts crying reassuring her that she is not alone.

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S.S.

answers from Washington DC on

Hey G.! First...you DO know what you're doing, don't be so hard on yourself. Working all day and being solely responsible for a newborn is a tough situation. The bassinet? I usually dump that around 2 months. I coslept with my last two with the Arm's Reach Cosleeper and that worked great. I believe at this age she is really start to be aware of the world around her and it's amazing. My daughter NEVER slept much during the day and, yes, it was frustrating but I promise it won't last forever. Same thing with always holding her. I actually had to go to the doctor because my right arm ended up almost twice the size of my left from doing everything (cooking, cleaning, whatever) while holding her at the same time. If you're alone with her at night, I think you should enjoy the time together. Maybe you and your husband can designate one weekend day to "tag-teaming" with the baby and cleaning and cooking? Also, the crock pot is a huge lifesaver for me!!! Well, good luck and enjoy your baby!:)

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M.M.

answers from Washington DC on

Hello G.,

First of all, congratulations on your baby!

It sounds like you are pretty busy these days. I know it can be daunting trying to do anything with a newborn.

I'm going to share what has worked for me.

First, I got the book "Healthy sleep habits, happy child" by Marc Weissbluth. It is a really good book.

Second, I assigned chores to specific days. For example, on Mondays I do laundry, Tuesdays I pay bills, etc.

This is a very tough time, specially because of the sleep deprivation that you might be experiencing. Try to get some help; recruit the help of a part-time sitter, or family members.

Good luck

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B.E.

answers from Washington DC on

I know how stressful this can be- hang in there! This sounds pretty normal to me- some babies just don't nap well. Mine napped pretty well, but she didn't sleep 6 hrs until she was 7 months old. So I guess its a tradeoff. Have you tried adding some white noise (like the vacuum or radio static- it has to be loud) when you want her to nap? Swaddling? Does she use a pacifier?

As far as letting her cry, I think she is still too young. I think most Dr.'s say you should wait until 4-6 months to start letting them self-soothe.

Transfer her to a crib when you feel comfortable. She will do fine.

Although I don't know your money situation, it may be worth hiring a teenager "mother's helper" to come over a couple hours in the evening to hold your baby and play with her while you stick a load of laundry in and do the dishes. I did this with a trustworthy neighborhood 14 year old and she enjoyed it. I paid her 7 buck an hour and she was thrilled.

Remember- your baby WILL sleep someday. You are doing great. Take care!

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A.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Only you know you and your baby's schedule so when my baby cries I go thru the mental check list of could she be hungry, in need of diaper change...tired...or just needing the reassurance mommy is here if she just woke from a nap..So if you can take care of the list and know she's taken care of in that regard then it's okay to talk to her and let her know you have some chores to do and then get it done and let her cry...that is the one way my babies have learned to self soothe. With my first baby I tended to every whimper and it wasn't until my second that I ever put her on a schedule and my life was much more meaningful and I got things done and enjoyed being mommy much more. I don't get to worked over her cries and by now you can probaby tell when her cries need attended to immediately or not.
good luck ad I'd transfer your baby to a crib when she can start rolling over...a bassinet doesn't seem to be roomy enough by that time. just my thoughts

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J.S.

answers from Washington DC on

i also had 2 daytime cat nappers... they would sleep soundly if i was holding them, but as soon as i tried to lay them down they would wake up...
i would suggest getting a sling to carry the baby in while you get housework done... my favorite (and most comfortable) sling was from www.mayawrap.com - the great thing is that you can even use it with a toddler- to carry the toddler on your hip and still have hands free... my babies were always happy in the sling- next to me and able to see everything...
i'm not big on letting babies cry... esp. only 12 weeks old... it's her only way to communicate- she's trying to tell you something... i'm bored, or lonely... and think about it... you just went back to work... when you're home she wants to be with you... not in a swing or chair... hope the advice helps!
best of luck to you!

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E.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Well, you said you have tried baby carriers, are these the ones that sit mobile or the kind that actually strap to you? If you haven't tried the one that straps to you, then try that. Be VERY thank-ful that she sleeps that well at night. If you know that she isn't hungry,wet or uncomfortable in any way, then I would let her cry for awile. Does she use a binky? (pacifier) She is training you and it should be the other way around. As far as when to switch to a crib... I swithed when my kids were just getting too big for it. Like, when the would outstrech their arms and were hitting the side of the bassinet, or when they were starting to try to turn. Good luck.

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T.C.

answers from Washington DC on

Congrats! I sympathize cause my now 2 year old daughter was similar - she would only sleep during the day if I was actually holding her - the minute I put her down she would wake up - she eventually outgrew that though and while I understand that it is hard, try not to worry about it too much - now I couldn't pay my daughter enough to take a nap on me and boy do I miss it - I look back and think I wish I had enjoyed it more (although I certainly did not think that at the time!) - I agree with someone else who said assign a task a day - you're never going to get it all done and in fact I would suggest not worrying about getting it done at all anyway - I know working full time and having a new born is hard, but they are only babies for a very short time so try to enjoy the time with them - the chores will all get done eventually! DD did take to the carrier - we didn't try a sling, but some friends of mine swear by theirs - also don;t be shy to ask people for help or even to tell DH that he needs to pitch in more

DD was in a bassinet for the first several months and then one day she was fussy and we put her in the crib instead for a change of pace and she fell asleep - she's been there ever since - I don't think there is a tried and true answer for when to do anything with babies (unless DD has outgrown the bassinett or something) - it really is just what works for you guys - find a routine that works for you and her and stick to it

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S.E.

answers from Lynchburg on

Good afternoon. I suggest this book often as it was a lifesaver for me, two sisters and friends. It's BabyWise by Gary Ezzo. Description: On Becoming Babywise brings hope to the tired and bewildered parents looking for an alternative to sleepless nights and fussy babies. The Babywise Parent Directed Feeding concept has enough structure to bring security and order to your baby's world, yet enough flexibility to give mom freedom to respond to any need at any time. It teaches parents how to lovingly guide their baby's day rather than be guided or enslaved to the infant's unknown needs. (You'll notice it's geared toward breastfeeding, but is the same advice/concept if you bottlefeed.) Using this method, my little girl began sleeping from 11 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. at about 5 weeks old and our little boy at about 9 weeks old.
And remember, it is okay to let her cry sometimes. It may be frustrating now, but if she gets her way each time she cries at this age ... it's much more frustrating as they are older.
Good luck and God bless!

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S.D.

answers from Washington DC on

HI,

My son was the same way - It's a phase - One question - what does your daycare provider do? - You may want to start with them and get suggestions. One thing I've tried doing is just holding him for 20-30 minutes after we get home. It helps him adjust back to being with you after daycare. After 30 minutes, try putting her down and just letting her cry it out for 20-30 minutes. (You can start gradually with 5-10 minutes if you like). She may even be so overtired from not napping, that she cries. Believe, me, once she can sit up around 6 months - she will be much happier. Bassinets are good for 3 months or up to 15 lbs. Some may be used for longer if they have higher weight limits, but that's the general rule.

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C.D.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.
Congratulations on your little girl!! my daughter was the same way and sometimes still is like that.. My solution was to get a sling that she can cuddle up in with out me having to hold on to her... this makes it easier to fold laundry, vaccuum etc. I got it at Hotslings.com but i know that the la lache league sells really good comfortable ones that are a little more bulky... mine works great and was cheaper then the la lache ones. Sometimes you might have to let her cry a little, i know its heart breaking but she'll learn to soothe herself... try a mobile in the bassinet

In response to the bassinet question when she starts to roll over and sit up you need to switch to a crib

Good luck!
~C.

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M.M.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.!

Babies sleep all sorts of strange hours, but it seems as though you are actually ahead of the game if yours is sleeping for 6 hours at night. That's great! My son slept for no more than 3 hours at a time for 4 months! As far as getting anything done during the day, try a sling. Go to www.slinglings.com for cheaper ones that are exactly the same as the more expensive kinds. My son did not like it at first, but I would keep him in it for a few minutes at a time until he got used to it. He LOVED it once we both figured it out. I would take him shopping w/ it also.

If that doesn't work, can you guys afford a cleaning lady 1-2 times a month? We hired one just until I developed some sort of routine. Once I felt like things were under control, we stopped having one. It just helps to have someone to dust, vaccuum, clean the bathrooms, etc.

What you are going through is TOTALLY normal. Some day soon you will stop being so overwhelmed and start to feel like you can handle most everything. My son is 9 months old and I think I started to get things under control around 4 months.

Good luck!

...and I just read some of your many responses. I guess by now you've realized that there are pretty much 2 ways people look at sleep training. Cry it out or not. I personally tried the cry-it-out way at 12 weeks and it did not feel natural to me, so I stopped. I tried again at around 3 months and it worked great. Babies do need consistency, but if something doesn't feel natural to you, don't do it. YOU really do know what's right for YOUR baby and every baby is different. I always warn my new mommy friends about reading too many books and listening to too much advice. It can really drive you crazy. Just love your baby as much as you can and she will turn out fine.

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J.D.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G., i am a mother and grandmother and i have owned
a daycare for over 14 years. It is alright that your baby girl
sleeps for 6 hours at night, she is tired from being up all
day. This i have learn over the years, from the time your
daughter enter your womb, she has learned your likes and dis-
likes,she has also felt your emotions. If you have done everything to comfort her it is alright to let her cry for a
moment, it will not hurt her. Talk to her and let her know
that nothing is wrong with her mommie knows what is best for you and when you do talk to her speak to her like you speak
to her father. I find that when you do this they understand
very quickly and will calm down soon. If you do this often
she will realize wow mommie is not playing along with my
games. You can discipline your children starting at birth even in the womb. Start teaching them the word no. Also you need to see if your daycare provider is holding her all day and is
she being active with her to capture her attention reading
to her and even playing games with her. She is not to young
for these things. This will also help you in the evening with
her. Just remember you are her mother, for nine long months
it has always been you and then for another 6 to 8 weeks it
was you and now you have gone back to work, her thoughts are
where is my mother and in the evening she wants you, your
lovening arms,kisses and hugs and the smell of her mother.
Give her time she will adjust. Just let her know that you
love her and everything will be alright, mommie is always
right here for you and i bet you any amount of money she
understands what you are telling her. Now for the bassinet,
she is ready for the crib. But are you ready for the crib.
There comes a new level in your little one's life, more space
and more things to do. Here comes exploring. Take care of
yourself and that baby girl that god has blessed you with.
Please make time for yourself, it's alright it is good for
you to do things for yourself.

J. ( mama d.)

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A.F.

answers from Norfolk on

It is hard when you have a very awake baby.My 21/2 year old was that way when he was very little.He was active and awake in the womb and it was the same when he was born.He only took a few short naps throught the day and all i can say is hang in there girl.There is nouthing you can force or change about it,it will pass in it's own time,or maybe she will be like this forever.My son now takes one realy good nap a day but had been down to one nap a day since he was one while all my other friends with one year olds were takinf 2 or 3 naps a day.Put yourself on a weekly scedual. you say she will go down foe a couple of 20 min naps a day,then monday and thurdays do your vacuming and then tuesdays and fridays throw a load of laundery in while she goes down.It also doesnt hurt to put her down for 5 to 10 minutes while you change the laundry it is important for her to see that even thoe you have left you do come back. As far as the bassente goes i put both of my boys in there crib in there own room when they turned 3 months.Good luck. Love Abby

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J.R.

answers from Norfolk on

Yeah, I know what you mean about the "crying" and no sleep! First, has the doctor stated nothing is wrong? Colic? My son had acid reflux, so it made it difficult for him. So you want to get those types of issues ruled out first! If doctor states all is okay, then I would say let her cry...if you "give in" she is already learning how to "push buttons!" I would let her cry maybe 15 mins, 20 mins at the most...if she hasn't stopped go over and rub her back or something--do not pick her up though! It's hard, but eventually she'll cry herself to sleep. You may need to leave the room...obviously if she is in a bassinet, then she is still in the room with you. Is she able to turn over? If so, crib time! I know when my son was in the bassinet I couldn't sleep at all... every move, breath, I would have to check him...so in the crib he went. Hang in there all of us have gone through those sleepless nights and boy did I feel like such a BAD mom!

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L.G.

answers from Washington DC on

Have you tried swaddling her? That, combined with "white noise" worked like a charm for our son when he was little. We would put on the "static" station on the radio just above the level of his cry. Once he was calm, we would turn down the volume.

In regards to swaddling, at 3 months our little man was able to get out of the regular swaddle so we bought the "Swaddle Me" at Babies R' Us--we swaddled him until 6 months.

As long as she is safe, it is okay to let her cry for a few minutes if you need to get something done or if you are going to lose it:) My opinion in regards to crying it out, at 12 weeks a babies cognitive skills are not developed enough to manipulate parents. In my experience, at that age, crying it out is not appropriate (that is longer than a few minutes as stated above). As newborns they rely on instinct and their instinct serves them well. As a society we are consumed by independency. It is outrageous to think that a newborn can be independent! Honestly, just love your little girl as much as you can and give her what she needs. She truly cannot ask for more than what she needs b/c she hasn't had a taste of chocolate yet--ha ha!!

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T.P.

answers from Washington DC on

Hello G.,
I am the mom of 3 girls 11,10, and 11 months. My 11 month old hated all those things too, the bouncy seat, the swing, and the play yard.
First and foremost if your house gets dirty it'll wait. Prioritize and do the absolute have to be done stuff.
What I always did with my youngest was if I was doing laundry she laid on the floor and I folded my laundry standing above her and talking the whole time. I would tell her whoose I was doing or you know just goofy conversation. Same in the kitchen, when I cooked dinner or cleaned disehes and counters I would lay her on the floor and talk to her the whole time I was doing it. Between hearing my voice and watching me move around her she was fascinated. Sometimes instead of talking I would play cd's and dance around the kitchen while I worked.
And you know what she crawled right when she turned 4 months was cruising by 8 months and has been walking since 10 months.
Just be creative and relax. Worst that happens is things don't get done for a month or so. That's all because in a feww weeks she will develop new skills that will entertain her.

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A.R.

answers from Washington DC on

Hello G.,
Let me start by saying I have an 8 year old and a 4 year old. My kids slept through the night before they were two months old. Just consider yourself blessed. Alot of moms and dads don't get back to a full 6 hours of sleep for months if not YEARS.
My advice is if it doesn't annoy you to the point if a 5 year old was doing it, it would drive you crazy let the baby get into the habit. In other words don't let your baby start doing something habitually you can't see fighting a 5 year old over. Because once they make a habit of it, YOU are going to have to deal with breaking that habit at some point. With that said, one can never hold their baby too much. There is going to come a time when you can't hold them anymore. Sure hugs for all, but you and I both know its not the same. Your baby is mentally stimulated, inquisitive, but physically she can't explore yet. So she is probably crying out of boredom, go, be her entertainment, take her with you to do the laundry, she wants to see what you are doing. But, don't fall into the trap of letting her monopolize all of your time. My kids run the show and it has taken more than a year for them to understand, "mommy and daddy need some time to talk, go find something else to do."
And if you decide to let her cry, don't worry she isn't gonna hurt herself and you aren't gonna hurt her emotionally either. A bond of trust won't be broken. You will help to mold a self sufficent, self assured, little baby. This can come back to bite you too :) my kids trust everyone and everything, will run up to anyone and introduce themselves, wanna play with people, kids, dogs, rabid squirrels :)
And transferring to a crib, if she is sleeping through the night, do it now. I don't know about alot of these other moms but, my kids always did their first roll over straight off the couch, or their first crawl in the middle of my bed while I'm trying to clean. Scary stuff, you have to beat them to it. Don't wait until she could hurt herself, expect her to make that step sooner rather than later.

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A.W.

answers from Lynchburg on

I had the same problem with my son 6 months now what i eventually figured out was he loved a warm bath i always gave him on at night and he slept great what i do now is when we wake up i feed him give him some play time with me on the floor then i give him a 10 min warm bath and put i soft sleeper on him rock him and he is out for at least an hour. He is a crier to when i walk away from him or i dont hold him but one day i just let him cry he cried for about 15 min then just gave up so for a week i let him cry now he has gotten alot better, he still will fuss maby 2 min then entertain himself

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D.T.

answers from Washington DC on

Hey G.!

Breathe...and release... :-)

My daughter has been doing the same thing. She is 5 months old now, but started with the no sleeping very early. She is just very alert and VERY nosy, doesn't want to miss a thing. At daycare, she might take one nap for about 20 minutes, 30-45 is a record.

One thing I would recommend is to get one of those snuggler carrier things that you strap on to you. That way she has the closeness and you can hopefully get things done.

What I did with my daughter was to let her cry some. Also, it will get easier when she starts to experiment with sitting up and playing with toys and more tummy time.

Do you have any sisters, nieces, nephews or friends that can keep her entertained while you try to get some work done? That is another thing I used. Now, I can actually wash, dry and style my hair!

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J.D.

answers from Washington DC on

First, breathe. It all seems so overwhelming at first, and no matter how many books you read or people you talk to, being a first time parent is exciting, draining and frightening all at the same time. Every child is different and it sounds like you need to figure out the best routine for you and your baby. You said you went back to work; do you use day care or a nanny? Either way, ask that caregiver how your little girl is doing during the day. Can that person(s) get her to sleep during the day? If so, ask them what they are doing. If not, then you may want to talk to your doctor about her sleeping and rule out any problems like reflux. You said your husband works evenings and you work days; you should work out some sort of cleaning schedule with him so that you don't have to carry the bulk of the load. As for the bassinet question, with my daughter, we had her in that for 2 months and then transferred her to her crib. If your daughter is already 12 weeks, she's probably getting too big for the bassinet, so you should probably transfer he soon. Good luck!

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A.J.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G. my name is A. i am a mom for 19 years now and im a nanny also. Its ok to let her cry she knows exactly if she cries u will pick her up, make sure she is full and dry then put her down to do your chores this happens alot to new moms. You did not create a monster this is her way of comfort once you started it she gets acustom being held when she cries, so its ok to break that habbit to get stuff done around the house if u have a swaddle wrap her in it before u put her down so she can be comfortable. Its ok to transfer her to her crib so she can get familiar with her room, thats the only way u can get things done and get some relaxation. `

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R.O.

answers from Washington DC on

I have one suggestion and one comment.

First, I suggest the book "Baby 411." I know, you've gotten a lot of suggestions for books and can't read them all. This one is more of a "desk reference" to go to for quick info for immediate needs. I felt like you about a year and a half ago and I relied heavily on this book. But remember, a book is just a book and many of these books are going to disagree. Take what you think is sound advice and don't do anything that you disagree with just because the books says it.

Second, since you have probably gotten advice to do two different things (carry your daughter around all the time and just let her sit and cry it out) please don't panic about choosing the right one. Clearly each side has had fine results. Obviously you care about your daughter and THAT is what is going to keep her from becoming a "monster."

Oh, and regarding the bassinet. I kept my daughter in hers till about 4 or 5 months, but I am not aware of a hard and fast rule. We did transition to a crib in her own room slowly. First we moved the bassinet away from our bed in our room, we played in her room everyday, then moved the bassinet into her own room and then finally switched to her crib. Whole process took about a month and never had any trouble.

Best wishes!

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K.D.

answers from Norfolk on

Well- fortunately or unfortunately, you have a completely normal 12 week old baby girl! :) It sounds like you are doing everything right. Some babies are fussy and don't sleep much and some sleep great and never cry. I had one of each and it was not anything I was doing or not doing so don't be so hard on yourself. My sister has a 6 month old who sounds exactly like your daughter. She literally screams if anyone else tries to hold her or if my sister puts her down for even a second. It is like you flipped a switch when you hand her to my sister- she immediately stops her crying. Sleeping ix hours at a time is normal. Do you have a front pack- like a Bjorn carrier- that you can put her in while you do things around the house? Maybe you said you have already tried that. I would just hold her while you do things and you will both be happy. I bet once she is able to sit unassisted and move around she will be happier. What about sitting her on the counter in one of those Bumbo seats where she is sitting up and close to you while you do the dishes for example? Good luck! I know it seems like forever now but someday she won't want you to hold her anymore. :) Hang in there and know that the crying and neediness will not last forever. A year from now will be very different. The part about never being able to get anything done- mine are 5 and almost 3 and I constantly still feel like that! :)

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C.H.

answers from Washington DC on

First, you are an awesome mom! You're listening to your baby's clues and that is so important. I have 3 young children and my youngest is 10 months. He doesn't sleep either. I have found that white noise really works. I have an air filter that I put next to his bed that hums and seems to help him sleep. I turn it on every time I put him down. I also find that keeping some sort of a routine worked really well with the other two, but I can't seem to get there with #3. I have also invested in a number of baby einstein movies. My husband calls them baby crack. I could put all three kids in the bouncy seat or swing in front of the tv and put in a baby einstein movie and have 30 minutes to get something done - usually shower. :) At 12 weeks, I'd recommend the Mozart movie and then get the neighborhood animals one. It does get easier. If she's holding her head up, you may want to put her in a playsaucer by where you're working. I have one outside my laundry room door and the baby goes in there while I'm sorting/changing loads/folding. He can see me so he's content. And I firmly believe you can't spoil a baby so hold her as much as you want because they grow so fast! I do Flylady to keep up with my house work, but I also think housework can wait for the first year of a baby's life. Hang in there!

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R.W.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.,
the sleep advice that i used i got from a book. it is awesome.
at three months you should be able to put your baby on a schedule-eating and sleeping. she should be taking at least three good long naps a day. of an hour or more. the trick is to put her in her bed, shut the curtains, and leave her. when she wakes after 20 mins, leave her there until she cries herself back to sleep.
it may take afew days to get her adjusted. she may cry for a while (15-30 mins is not unual) but babies NEEEEED a lot of sleep. They require it to be healthy, so when you are hearing her cry and having a hard time, remember it is for her own good to get the sleep she needs to thrive. This of course, is ONE method of child rearing. I'm sure there are others who will say otherwise. But i SWEAR by this method and i have two happy, confident, independent girls who are adaptable BECAUSE we have a strict schedule. good luck! (book: Contented Little Baby book, by Gina Ford) Also, try to swaddle her a nap. That may help. All this being said. you are a Mom and a good one, so trust your instincts when in doubt. And give yourself a lot of credit.

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C.M.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.!

First, take a breath! Bravo to you for taking on being a double duty mom. I have 2 girls and they too bring joy. One suggestion I have is reaching out to your pediatrician and sometimes (like our office) they have classes for new parents and also offer advice on what to do in a pinch. I found with our first I tried everything until it worked. You will find there is little categorized as "normal", as all children are different. Coodoes to you for the 6 hour stretch @ night. Another tip is,and I am sure you may already know is, it takes time to adapt. In terms of "doing" stuff once you get home, I let my children cry , but told them before I left the room "Mommy will be right back" (I know it sounds crazy @ such a young age). But I talked to them like they were older from day one. I gradually increased the time in between my "absence" and once they realized I did indeed come back they were all good. Also, I put music on while I was doing something with them in the room (laundry (gave them clothes to play with/eat/chew (smile), cooking (gave them pots and pans to touch/bang)that also distracted them and also allowed them to explore/ model what mommmy was doing. I hope this all helps. Best to you and you lovely family.

Cris

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E.T.

answers from Washington DC on

Please stop holding your baby.She will cry for you, but put her in her seat and take with you from room to room. It worked for me.

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A.B.

answers from Richmond on

yes you need to let her cry because it builds her lungs up and it lets her know that everytime she cries your not going to pick her up she will get out of that if you stick to it i know sometimes it is hard to do but you just have to be strong and her sleeping 6 hours at night that is awesome what i would suggest is giving her some cereal in her bottle or trying to spoon feed her maybe she needs a little more in the day time to sleep or maybe at night too just try it as far as her bassinet it is when you feel she has out grown it and maybe that is one of the reasons she isn't sleeping well too i went through that with my son he wouldn't sleep in his crib i had to make his bed the love seat in our house so good luck to you and if you want to talk again contact me at [email protected]____.com my name is A.

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J.R.

answers from Washington DC on

You are doing great! You get up each day and somehow get yourself dressed to go to work. That is a huge accomplishment! I would go for 3 days without a shower. You are way ahead! You are not supposed to get anything done. are you eating and is the baby clean? That is all you really have to do. Your husband can do laundry when he is home. You love your beautiful girl and that is a great start. Hang in there. It will start to come together.

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M.B.

answers from Washington DC on

Wow, my daughter was the exact same way about being held all the time! I tried following someone's advice to just put her down and let her cry while i did chores and she screamed for 45 solid minutes (I feel guilty about it to this day). I couldn't shower, couldn't go to the bathroom... my mom and mom-in-law would always say "oh, enjoy these times now, they go so fast etc etc" which was SO unhelpful and made me feel completely inadequate-- every day seemed to take a week and I was so exhausted I'd count the minutes until bedtime.

Anyway, what helped me a lot was getting a Baby Bjorn-- frees up both of your hands and balances the weight of the baby well so you can wear it for longer periods of time.

As for the naps, I don't know. They might be normal. "Experts" say babies should be sleeping 12-14 hours a day at 4 months, about half at night and half during the day. Are you nursing and taking any medications in the morning that might be stimulating-- caffeine, antidepressants, allergy meds? Is she maybe "snacking" and having a bunch of small feeds, and waking up because she's hungry?

A final thought, if you can't fix the baby, maybe there's another way to fix the pile-up? We ended up getting a neighborhood 15-year-old to come over after school and help out for a few hours with chores and sometimes walk the baby around the block so i could nap. It was a huge help.

I really feel for you, I remember those days so well! I hope you find a solution!

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A.W.

answers from Norfolk on

G.,
You are sooo not alone! My daughter did the same thing, and I thought I was going to go crazy, but having some support and trying to find little moments in the day to just sit and breathe helped me a lot. One thing you can try is one of those pouches or front-packs that you can put your baby in (in front of you) and do some things around the house that way. I know you usually put the babies in facing you, but my daughter loved facing outward while I was walking around the house. Sometimes, even if you have nothing else to do, you can do that, just to give your arms a break and get her used to it. I know it is overwhelming right now, but it really gets better! By the time she's 2, you'll be wishing for those days when all she wanted to do was be held! :-) Keep strong and just remember how much you cherish your baby and you will be over it before you know it! Good luck!

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S.G.

answers from Norfolk on

First of all, congratulations on your new baby!
As far as the sleeping during the day goes, I hate to tell you this, but you just need to let her cry. I know it's hard. I am a mother of 5 and the first one, who is now 19, was the same way! I couldn't be out of his sight and if he wasn't entertained he would cry, but, he slept most of the night. I was a young, first time mom, and thought every time they fussed, they were supposed to be picked up. Now, don't confuse me with someone who believes you're "spoiling" your baby by holding her. I'm not from that school of thought. I don't believe babies that young can be "spoiled". However, it sounds like you've started something with her that you need to break. She knows now that every time she cries, she's going to be picked up. If you have things to do and you know she's dry and her belly is full and she's not in pain, go to her and talk to her, rub her, what ever you want to do to let her know you're still around, then walk away. She will be fine. It will break YOUR heart, but she will learn to self-soothe and it's good for her. Then, after you do what you need to do, go to her and pick her up. You may even find that she ends up napping! :-)
Hope this helps. Good luck...

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K.L.

answers from Washington DC on

G.,

I've been there! I have a wonderful 9 month old son and I still find it difficult to get things done around the house. What worked for us in the early days, was to wear my son in either the Baby Bjorn harness while I cooked dinner, folded laundry, etc., or wear him across my body in the Hotsling. He would usually fuss at first, but if I kept moving, the motion would lull him to sleep. I was able to get so much done! But now he is too big to be carried and crawling all over the place-- it's a totally different ballgame!

My other advice would be to find someone who could come over on a weeknight or maybe for a few hours on the weekend-- a friend or relative-- and either hold the baby while you get some things done or, if they don't mind, he or she could chip in with some of the housework. I found that people are usually eager to help, you just have to ask. I didn't and I wish I had! Also, you sort of have to let your standards slide when you have a newborn baby... the house just isn't going to be as clean as it once was. You have new priorities and have to re-prioritize the household duties to reflect that. Some things just have to wait.

About the bassinet, I waited until my son was sleeping through the night to transfer him to his room, which was at about 6 months. I think it just depends on when you and your baby are ready... different for everyone.

I hope my advice helps. Good luck and try to slow down and ENJOY this time with your little one. It goes by SO fast!

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A.H.

answers from Washington DC on

At 12 weeks, I would do like the others said, put her in a sling, baby bjorn, something like that that allows her to get a good clip of sleep-meaning 1 hour or more. Do that for at least one day so she can catch up on her daytime sleep. She's still really young, so do whatever you have to to get her some sleep!

Of course you have to rule out medical things like reflux by talking with her pediatrician.

You said you just went back to work, where is she during the day?

I have posted this a million times for other moms, but my golden piece of advice (yeah right!) is to read up on baby sleep. You don't have to follow the advice the book gives, but just knowing how infant sleep is organized (or isn't) is priceless knowledge.

Another thing I always mention on here is the Mother's Group held at GBMC on Fridays at 10am. The age range is 8 weeks to 1 year and was invaluable for me and about 100 other women I know. I know you said you just went back to work, but maybe you could make it one Friday. My son just turned 1, but I still have questions and I know DeeDee can help me! She's a lactation consultant there, but is also a wealth of knowledge.

Hope that helps and I'm sorry this is so long! :)

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S.C.

answers from Norfolk on

Some babies just need to be held more. If you are back at work then she is just asking for you to make up the time with her when you get home. The housework is not going anywhere. I would suggest enlisting more help from your husband or a friend with the must do housework like dishes and laundry and just relax and enjoy the baby. If it can't get done in the few minutes you get here and there then it wasn't important. You said you have tried carriers. Have you tried a sling? One of my children was only happy being held and it saved my life. I was able to do dishes and laundry and feed her all with the sling. The baby still feels like they are in your arms. My 6th child is sleeping in the sling right now while I write this. I would also say don't let her cry it out. The only thing baby's learn from that is that you won't respond to their cries. Every baby is unique some sleep more in the day and some do not. I would say if she pees, poops, and grows then she is "normal" You are not going to "spoil" a baby by over handling her. You might spoil produce from the store by over handling it but never a baby. NO one goes to therapy as an adult because they felt like they were shown to much love. I would not want to be upset and crying and have my husband tell me that "You had just had dinner,and I know you have not soiled yourself, so I am going to leave you alone."If I am upset I want comfort even if what I am upset about makes no sense or I can't exactly define it. It is cruel to let a child cry and say it is good for them. Parenting is hard work and children will go through many phases but it is worth investing time and care into your children and maintaining a sensitivity to their feelings. As for transferring from bassinet to crib I would say look at the weight restrictions on your bassinet and use that as a guide.

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T.H.

answers from Norfolk on

you can transfer her to crib when she starts to roll over or gets too big for it. so you have tried wearing her in a baby snugli because that was my idea. maybe let her cry for a few minutesat a time if you are trying to throw clothes in the wash or stir dinner or vaccuum (that might even soothe her) will she take a pacifier? vibrations in a ibrating chair? just remeber that if she is ok thn lettting her cry for a few minutes here and there are fine and may even slowely elp her realize that she is fine without mommy holding her all of the time.

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C.C.

answers from Norfolk on

G.,
Any sleep habit is normal for a newborn - at least that is what they told me! My baby is now almost 7 months but she had crazy sleep patterns when she was 0-3 months (and it still is unpredictable). I'll give you the advice that my good friend gave me - the first three months are hell! It is so true. After that, things start to settle down and get a bit more routine. It sounds like your little bundle just prefers not to sleep during the day and has a bit of separation anxiety. I don't think it is anything to worry about although I know it sucks when you can't get anything done at night.

Have you tried a sling or a Bjorn carrier to 'hold' her and still keep your hands free? I did this when I vacuumed the house or did laundry. It didn't always stop her fussing but it at least let me get something done and I could keep an eye on her. I highly recommend it. My baby hated the sling - she only likes the Bjorn so one may be better than the other.

As for the bassinet - as soon as she can start pulling her self up or turning over is a good time for the crib. Some doctors recommend that you keep the baby in the room with you until they are 6 months (that's what I'm doing).

Good luck!!

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N.L.

answers from Washington DC on

hi G. - always good to talk to your pediatrician but I strongly recommend that you get the book Healthy Sleep Habits, Healthy Child. It will transform life for your whole family. it's sensible, not extreme in its information, but sleep is critical to your little one's health, development and YOURS! I will say the book is not very well designed in the sense it can be hard to find exactly what you're looking for sometimes, but when i was in your situaiton, i read the whole thing while holding my fussy baby :) good luck - it will get better. imagine two solid naps a day when you can rest, fold laundry or vaccuum that dog hair. -Nancy

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J.G.

answers from Washington DC on

My daughter was very similar at from 0-4 months old. I worried about getting her on a regular nap schedule too, got absolutely nothing done around the house (let alone take a shower), and she tolerlated carriers only on occasion. The good news? She grew out of it and I'm assuming your little one will too. As for the house? So what if it looks like a hurricane went through it, it will always be there - your child, however, will not.
From what I have read it is not smiled upon to let babies younger than 8 months cry for more than 10-15 minutes. BUT - if you put her safely in her crib and go for a 45 minute walk to keep your sanity all will still be well with the world. =)

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M.K.

answers from Dover on

Well if she sleeps for 20 minutes than try to get things done is those 20 minute cat naps. or maybe u can find a show or a toy or something she enjoys and get her to pay attention to that. even if its only 20 minutes, it 20 minutes to do a load of laundry or to vacuum the floor. not all babys will like a bouncy seat or swing and thats ok. But picking her up all the time is not going to do anything for either of u. u may need to put her on the floor and walk around her to get things done. Unless she is screaming her lungs out, a little crying wont hurt her. She will follow u around with her eyes and that is ok. Just dont pick her up everytime she cries. She knows that gets ur attention and u will pick her up. She is 12 weeks, but they get smart on what works for them really quick. the reason u are worn out is u r at her beck and call 24/7, she demands everything from u. u give no space between the 2 of u b/c when she cries u come and she knows that. I know she is 3 months old and babies are very demanding at that age. But u have to find a medium for both of u. U need to give her a little bit of independence, so she knows u are there, but u dont have to hold her every second. try to go to her when she cries, but dont pick her up. Just let her see u and be like its ok, mommy is here. something small as not picking her up as soon as she cries or everytime she cries for u may work. Good luck and i hope the best for u and ur little one.

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S.W.

answers from Washington DC on

Wow, you are going to get loads of advice and I'm sure it will be all over the board. Here goes- First I wouldn't worry too much. Babies cry, they don't know day from night and they are all different but they do catch on fast. If they learn that mommy will pick them up all the time they will use the only means they have to make it happen-cry-cry-cry. Sure respond to the needs of your baby and absolutly cuddle them but you still have alife and responsibilitiesand if you don't start now it just gets harder. She will not get hurt by crying. Some kind of a schedule usually helps. If she naps for just a few, let her stay in her bed alittle longer and see what happens, try to eliminate many catnaps she needs full cycle sleep. That is awsome for now that she sleeps so long at night that could change so be prepared but then again it may not. You are learning and so is your baby but she can only learn what you teach her, will she learn saelf-soothing or will she depend on you to relax and sleep? I had read a good book called the baby whisperer, it has some good ideas. I have two boys 2 and 9 mo. and I am 33. Good luck and feel free to e-mail if you want. [email protected]____.com Good luck.

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K.B.

answers from Norfolk on

G.,
Go to meetup.com to join a mommy group!! I did and love it. I am a SAHM (stay athome mom) but my friend belongs to the working moms group. It's a wonderful source for friends, advice, going out during day or night, with and with out baby. And CONGRATS on being a mom. I have an almost 3yr old and an 8week old.
I think you are creating a sleep monster girl! I have had great success w/ sleep training my preschooler and new baby. We follow "healthy Sleep Habit, happy child" by Dr. Weissbluth. It's the #1mommy recommendation I have for you and all moms. It is absolutely the most important gift you can give your baby - healthy sleep. It gives you suggestions on how to let baby learn to fall asleep on their own. THere are 3 levels to teaching, in a nut shell; let the cry it out (works fastest but hard on mommies!)- we did it), go to them a lot and work your way out of room...

BUt you have to have a plan and it will work! Good luck! Kimmy

We used "On Becoming Babywise" book for first few months and then "Healthy Sleep Habits" Love them both but you need one or both!!! I see now that other moms have recommended these too!

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J.G.

answers from Washington DC on

My son was exactly like that. Have you tried different types of baby carriers? My son hated being carried in a cradle position but loved upright carriers. We had a bjorn and a wrap that could be tied so that he was in the same position as the bjorn. It gave me my hands back so that I could at least get a few things done. I'm afraid he didn't get into a good nap schedule until he was at least 16-weeks old and that is when he started getting into the two longer naps a day rather than cat naps all day long. Now he is just about a year old and he'll sleep one cat nap in the morning and then 3 hours in the afternoon.

For me, what helped us work-out the nap problem was to try to keep him active and entertained to discourage little cat-naps and then watch for the signs when he was very sleepy. We also started letting him whine it out in his crib. Good luck.

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T.C.

answers from Washington DC on

The doctors say crying is good for babies and as long as she is in a secure place she will be fine. She is controlling you and knows that if she cries you will run to her rescue and you get nothing done around the house. If you allow her to cry more she just might take longer naps and you are blessed that she does sleep during the night because some babies take longer to get to the point of sleeping through the night. You have to train your baby and not allow her to train you.

It's hard not to want to pick them up but you have to let her cry sometimes. Eventually she will stop crying once she realizes you are not responding as quick. I know I loved holding my baby too and it's natural to want to hold them 24/7 because they are so precious and innocent but that's not possible. Holding them every single minute possible can also make it hard for a sitter or your sitter may be holding the baby all day. You can also try getting one of thouse carriers to strap her around you while you take care of chores but you don't want to overdue it because it will become habit forming.

It's difficult to say in any situation because all babies are unique and you really just have to play it out to see what works best for the both of you.

You can transfer her to a crib anytime you want because it has the bars where babies are secure and you can put the little musical windups above her bed to entertain her. Hope this helps.

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P.P.

answers from Washington DC on

Oh do I feel your pain. I spent the first 6 months trapped in the rocking chair watching the dust bunnies dance. Some babies just have to be held. Mine would only sleep 20 minutes or less unless I was holding him, then he slept for an hour or so, but I got nothing done.
Eventually I could put him down on the floor on this http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2266983
then I could do a few things. When he was about 6 months old he loved this http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2508003 The jumparoo is a lifesaver.
In the meantime you just have to learn to do things one handed and make peace with the dust bunnies. They do eventually grow out of it.
Who is watching the baby when you work, what do they do?
Good luck, I know how hard it is.

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P.D.

answers from Richmond on

G.,

Congratulations on your little girl! I have a 4 year old son and a little girl who will be 1 in March. With my son I didn't do any kind of schedule and I really regret it because he hasn't napped for me since about 2 years of age. I started off not having my daughter on a schedule (letting her dictate her own basically), and she wasn't napping for more than 30-45 minutes at a time...really annoying when all you want is a little break! So I decided to start getting her on a schedule for naptime. 2 to 2 1/2 hours after she woke up in the morning I would put her down for a nap. If I had to let her cry for a bit, I would - going in and reassuring her, then going out again. Then do the same thing in the afternoon. She goes to bed at night around 8pm. Right away it didn't seem as though it was working, but after a couple of weeks of being consistent it started paying off with her sleeping better for naps and at night. Now she sleeps anywhere from 1 1/2 - 2 1/2 hours during naptime (2x per day) and nightime if she wakes up I just have to go lay her back down and she goes back to sleep. Start a schedule and stick to it and you and your little girl will be happier for it!
As for the bassinet, when she starts moving around or trying to roll over I would move her to her crib. You don't want to wait too long because she could wake up in the middle of the night and push herself up - that could be dangerous. You will be sleeping, so you won't know what she's up to.
Good luck with everything and enjoy her!

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V.L.

answers from Washington DC on

Hello G.,
I have a 9 month old, who thankfully has been a good sleeper from about 2 months. In the beginning, we had no clue what we were doing either, but everything fell into place. I found that having her sleep in the room with my husband and I was part of the reason she wasn't sleeping well (and neither were we). Since babies are such noisy sleepers, I found myself checking on her every time she made a noise. I decided to put her in the crib at 3 weeks and we all slept better. We were also introduced to the "easy" swaddles. I don't really know how the nurses at the hospital swaddle with just a blanket. I like the Kidapottamous swaddles. You can find them at Babies r' Us. My daughter LOVED these. If she was fussy, they would instantly calm her and they also really helped her to sleep both day and night. We put a small air ionizer in the room for the noise. Check out the "Happiest Baby on the Block" book or video. The combination that helped my daughter sleep was
1. swaddle
2. pacifier
3. white noise

Last, I really think the baby monitor I have helped to transition her to the crib. I use the Summer Babies monitor with a little screen so you can see the baby. This helped to ease my worries when transitioning to the crib. I liked being able to see her. A bit pricey but definately worth it. I completely understand your feeling of not knowing what you're doing. Trust me, it gets better.

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K.D.

answers from San Francisco on

Hi G.. I sympathize with your situation completely. I myself have an 8 week old infant. It seems that I am always attached to her and she sleeps during the day very little. I am very lucky though becuase I have two other girls that help me. In order for you to get house work done, may I suggest two things. One: Split the tasks into sections. Each section put your daughter down and allow her to cry. Believe me...she will be ok if she cries. Second: Try one of those carriers. The ones you strap on so your child is near you. Not only does it allow you to free up your hands, but it keeps your baby near and hopefully without the tears. This should allow you to get some things done.

Bassinet...I agree with one of the responders. When the baby can roll over and lift their head and body up. Especially before they can sit up. Good luck and congratulations!

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M.G.

answers from Washington DC on

What about a baby sling. There are many different kinds, some will allow you to lay the baby inside or sit her up. Its good because you have her with you (on you) but your hands can be free to run that vacuum or throw the clothes in the wash. Another suggestion is can someone else entertain the baby in the evenings, a teenage neighbor maybe for an hour or so. Good luck! I've been there, you'll be fine!

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J.M.

answers from Richmond on

First,Congrads on your new baby!!I think you need to do what feels right to you with the holding vs crying it out thing. I personally held both of mine all the time and my 7 yr old is very independant but my almost 3 yr old is very dependant(she has also had a lot of health problems too though). I think you need to sit down with your husband and see if you can split the chores around the house. If you are both working outside the home then you should both work inside the home as well. This may also help to take off some stress to you and you will not feel as overwelmed. Also if you have friends that come by to see the baby while they are holding the baby slip into the kitchen and get some of your stuff done. With the bassinet thing i have always used as a rule of thumb that its time to come out when they start rolling over and espically when they are starting to lift up their heads. Good luck and just trust your instinks.

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M.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.,

First: The bassinet. Now that she is sleeping through the night is the perfect time to transfer her to her crib. That's what I always do. :-)

Secondly: It seems perfectly normal and healthy that she wants and needs *so* much attention from you - especially since you work full time. I, personally, would suggest that you take the time to sustain your bond - if only to a degree. Use the 10 spurt to do something (while she can see you and you are talking to her). Maybe start playing with her *while* she is in ______ (you fill in the blank). It only gets a degree easier when they can start moving (My 16 mo old is still attached to my thigh most of the day. If there's one thing I've learned over the years is that there are "seasons" in parenting. Right now, your daughter is at a stage where you *will* get less done. Let that be ok. You'll be at another stage all-too-soon. Don't be hesitant to ask for help & let your husband pick up some slack if he's not with your daughter after he wakes up, while he's home, during the day or take turns with her and chores with him on the weekend.

You're doing a great job. Don't be too hard on yourself or expect too much from yourself.

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M.F.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.,

The 20 min naps are normal for a 12 week old. As she gets older the naps will get longer and less frequent. You will see a big differents in 1 or 2 months. If she has a very sharp loud annoying cry she is probably tired the best thing to do is leave her alone so she can sleep.

It is about time to switch her to a crib and get her out of your room around now if she is still in there with you. You will both get more sleep. She is getting more aware of her surroundings if she sees you in bed at night and knows you are near by she will wake up sooner.

Good Luck

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J.F.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi -

I'm not sure if what I have to share will help, but here goes! First of all, I think it's great that you guys have gotten your daughter to the point where she's sleeping well at night and playing during the day - that's the way the rest of the world operates! And if she's a generally happy baby, then the schedule she's worked out is working for her. Obviously, that doesn't make your life any easier, but I think it's very normal for the baby to be running the show at your daughter's age. They aren't yet capable of manipulation, so if she's fussy when you put her down, there's something she's trying to tell you.

My daughter, who is now almost 18 mos., was similar in that it took her awhile to pick up those longer naps during the day. We had alot of 30-45 minute ones, but you are right - it's hard to even stick a shower in that amount of time, let alone get the laundry and housecleaning done. During those first few months, I always felt like I was racing against a clock to get something done before she woke up. Fortunately, she liked her swing, but like your daughter, she wasn't a fan of the carrier until about 4 months. Have you tried a sling? I have heard about lots of people who have had success with them when the regular Bjorns don't work - something about the way the baby is positioned, etc.

My daughter couldn't quite figure out that she could bounce her bouncy seat by moving, kicking her legs, etc., so she liked her vibrating chair better. Does yours have that kind of feature on it? It might be worth a try... Do you have any sort of a Gymini mat or other play gym that might entertain her while you fold laundry, etc.? My daughter loved hers, which was really nice. It didn't entertain her for more than 15 minutes at a time, so I would basically move her from apparatus to apparatus sometimes just to piece together an hour block of time to get stuff down. Also, once your daughter can hold up her head, I suggest trying some sort of Exersaucer, as these REALLY keep them entertained for a bit and keep them in one place (which is great once they start to be on the move). Caroline started using hers earlier than I thought she would because her neck got strong pretty quickly. This was a lifesaver at times.

Even if these suggestions have been tried or just don't work for you, I can promise that it will get better and easier, and not in a matter of years, but in weeks to months. Your daughter will begin to, most likely, merge those short naps into longer ones very soon. I feel like for us, that happened around 4-5 months, and that's when I began to feel human again. In the meantime, I would recommend that you keep trying those things that she has initially not liked (swing, bouncer, etc.), as I found that my daughter warmed up to alot of this stuff when she was a little bigger and could see and explore what was going on around her (ie - she started liking the Bjorn when she could face outward instead of in)...

As for your question about the bassinet - ours happened to be a big one from Pottery Barn Kids, so she fit in it for quite awhile. The rule of thumb is if they are rolling or sitting up, they shouldn't be in it, but until then, if your daughter fits the length, then I say keep using it if you want to. We ended up transitioning to the crib at about 4 1/2 months - and it was much more traumatic for us than her!

As I said before, I have no idea if any of this helps, but at the very least, it sounds like your daughter - and you! - are very normal in what you are going through these days. It will get better, I promise! Good luck!

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K.H.

answers from Dover on

My daughters were the same way. They had to be on me every second they were awake...(and asleep in most cases). The only thing I found that worked was a snuggly that I strapped onto the front of me. I could put them in facing me or out, usually liked towards me, with it loosened a bit, so they could lean a bit away from me and watch me. You said you tried a baby carrier...is that the same type of thing? If not, try it! If it is...maybe try a different one to see if they would like it better. Maybe the one you have is not suiting what they want? Or isn;t comfortable. I would have to say that your baby's sleeping pattern is not the norm, but is not anything to worry about. And I am guessing that there are a lot of moms that would like it...her sleeping that long during the night! And most moms, I think, would be exhausted at the end of the day and heading for bed as soon as they could, wether their baby was up all day or not. Being a new mommy takes it out of you.
If you don't find anything that works, you are probably going to have to let her cry a bit to get a few things done. Maybe she will calm down and understand that you are still there, and will come and pick her up. I would try to find some type of a snuggly that she likes, or just let her cry and work on some chores for very short periods of time. Such as, put her down in a swing, whatever...let her cry why you throw in a load of laundry, Then go back to her. Later, the same while you do a load of dishes. Good luck!
K.

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M.D.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi, G.,

I'm a mom of 3, and (I can't believe it), my youngest just turned four!

My middle child was a cat-napper. As another mom mentioned as a possibility, she was also a "snacker". She would nurse for a little while and fall asleep. I couldn't get her to wake up and finish a feeding, so I'd put her down. Of course, she wouldn't stay asleep for long, since she got hungry quickly.

All of my kids actually liked the swing and I used it for daytime naps with the middle child. Try giving her a pacifier and/or "lovey" in the swing. I used those soft birdseye diapers under their chins when I nursed, so that helped them fall asleep. (There's always a clean one, too.)

Another thing you might try is to let her take a cat nap in the morning and make sure she gets good and tired for a longer afternoon nap. That 15 minute rule sounds pretty good for trying to let them cry it out. Listen to see if she's "winding down" before you go get her at 15 minutes. She may be about to give up.

As for the bassinet, I moved all of mine to the crib between 6 weeks and 3 months. The first time I went to my Mom's house with my oldest, she was not sleeping through the night. She slept all through the night in Grandma's crib, and we realized she was waking herself up in the night because she kept touching the sides of the bassinet. That might even help the nap length, and naps are a good time to try out the new sleeping arrangement. That way, when you go check on her several times, you don't have to stumble through the house in the night!

Happy napping!

-M.

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J.G.

answers from Washington DC on

G.,
I haven't had a chance to read responses although I am sure you've gotten a lot of great advice. I have a Baby Bjorn carrier that I would love to give you if you wanted to try it out. For me I found that baby #3 cried a lot more than the others but then also learned to soothe herself simply because she had too. I also recommend SWADDELING! It was a lifesaver. If you haven't mastered it I am sure you can search the net for the correct way. Bassinet - I transfered mine around 8 weeks. It would depend on the size of your bassinet. I found that mine moved around and hit the sides of the bassinet and would wake them up. Again, swaddeling is a must in my book for sleep - but sounds like your baby can sleep at night.
Good luck. Email me if you want to try that bjorn carrier. [email protected]____.com

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L.P.

answers from Washington DC on

G.,

I'm an old Mom of 16 and 12 year old girls...my older one was like yours - only cat naps during the day. I used to put her in a belly pack while doing laundry and other chores around the house. While awake, we did lots of activitiy, singing and movement, all in the hopes of tiring her out. I did really late last feedings and was lucky in that she did sleep about 5 hours a night.
We used a bassinette, and I shifted to the crib when both girls were about 2 months old, with the monitor turned way up!
The bottom line is that you should relax and enjoy all the play time you have together! So what if you're not able to get all your chores done - believe me, before you know it, you'll be picking out colleges and longing for all the time you spent together!
L.

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J.B.

answers from Norfolk on

Well hello my name is J. and i think i might be able to help you out a little....... well yes let her cry for about 5 minutes or so it is good for her to cry it builds her lungs up and strenghtens them.......... no you are not creating a monster she knows right now that when she crys you will run right over to her and pick her up........ it is hard to do at first but i had to do it with my daughter too and she will stop doing that after a couple of days of you letting her cry for a few minutes..........As far as the bassinet goes i never had one for my daughter i had her in the crib from day one........not sleeping all day long is good for you because then you get some rest at night and sounds like you've got her on a schedule which is a good thing...............My sone on the other hand he was up every 3 hours eating 6 ounces of milk so i got no rest.......... Being a Mom for the first time is not easy but once you get her to stop crying so you can get things done will be good for you...........Hope i helped you out if not write be back and let me know
J.

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A.J.

answers from Washington DC on

I have 15 month old twins. They too took cat naps wherever they were laying, whether they were in a bouncy chair or on the floor with toys, until they were probably 6 months old when I began putting them in their crib for naps. I found when I scheduled the naps, they slept longer and did not cat nap everywhere. I probably should have transitioned them to napping in their cribs earlier, but it hadn't dawned on me that it might actually help. Because there were two, I did not hold them that often. They spent alot of time staring at toys in their bouncy chairs or laying on the floor in the baby gym thing. I normally had music on which seemed to help. I think it just depends on the baby, really. I did read the Baby Wise book that discusses the importance of flexible scheduling. Honestly, I did sometimes let them cry when I was trying to get something done. My mother said she always kept us in the same room with her so we could see what she was doing while she was working. I don't know if I have been helpful or not. Good luck - I feel your frustration.

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J.D.

answers from Roanoke on

12 weeks is still very young. Try to keep putting her in the crib/bassinet to sleep, even for 20-30 minutes. My son, (now 6 months) was not a big sleeper during the day, but the last few months is finally starting to sleep for longer periods. A book, Healty Sleep Habits, Happy Child was very helpful. Stick with it, and it will start to turn around. I started using the crib at 2 months, we all slept better. Good luck

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A.T.

answers from Charlottesville on

Hi G. --
Wow, can I feel your pain! My first child was very similar. My solution ended up being a Baby Bjorn (and I have a friend who had great luck with a sling). I just wore him or carried him all the time. Now, before every other mom jumps on me for "creating a monster" as you put it, I'll say this: it took us 2 1/2 years to get pregnant and I thought I'd never be able to have children, so I was pretty enthralled with my son. I was also lucky enough to have a choice about whether or not to work outside the home and decided to stay home with him. The screaming when not being held thing didn't last forever (about 4 1/2 months or less) and as a happy by-product, he was the most confident child on the planet after that. He never had separation anxiety. I asked my pediatrician about it, and he said that paradoxically enough, children who are held more seem to be more confident and self-assured (apparently there have been studies about it -- I know that's not an absolute, it depends on personality and many other issues, but it made me feel good at the time to think that I might have helped him be more secure). As for sleeping -- after having 3 children, my opinion on sleeping is that there is no definite "normal." Every child has their own issues with sleep. I know that developmental timelines can predict patterns of behavior, but let's face it, they are their own little people from the beginning. I tried everything to avoid making him "cry it out" -- including sleep-sharing at night which worked for us for about 9 months. But, at 9 months I read Weisbluth's Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, and started using some of his methods (which basically seemed to be understanding a little about the developmental sleep stage my son was in, paired with crying it out). It was an awful 2 weeks (I would sit outside his room and cry with him) but it was awesome after that. He is the best sleeper now and has been since 9 months. Obviously only you know all the elements of your situation and as her mother, you are the expert on your child - so don't feel like your gut feeling must be wrong because you're a first-time mom, etc. . . My advice would be to do what you have to do to keep your child healthy and happy and you from going insane (even if it means holding your child constantly). As a mom of 5 once told me -- they won't want you to hold them forever, so try to enjoy this time. I hope some of that helped. If it makes you feel any better, I admire your devotion to your child and your willingness to seek help to make her happier. Good job mom!

A. - stay-at-home mom of a 6 year old, 3 1/2 year old and 1 year old

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S.C.

answers from Richmond on

My daughter was the same way. Being my 3rd child, I needed to be able to keep up with housework and take care of her older brothers. The sling was my best friend while she went through that mommy attachment phase. It allowed me to have my arms free but keep her close. She would nap in it while I went about my chores. And it kept her so much happier than a bouncer, swing or baby seat ever did! My recommendation is the Maya wrap. They can be worn a number of ways and are adjustable. They have a website you can order from.

On a side note. I don't feel letting them cry is the answer. 15 minutes to a baby is a very long time and for a first time mom listening to her baby scream and cry, its horrible. I also feel a baby who is left to cry, develops trust issues. She needs you to comfort her and she needs you close. So foster that bond and get some sort of carrier. It will take some getting used to but you'll burn more calories and build some muscle and this is very special time you'll never get back. My daughter is now 4 and while she still likes to cuddle, she is very indepentent, loving and an all around wonderful child. These clingy phases are short lived. They may feel like they last forever but looking back now, I loved having her so close. Even if it did make things a little tougher at the time.

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D.S.

answers from Washington DC on

She probably gets enough time in bouncy seats at daycare and really needs a hug from you! Most likely she is tired. Swaddle her up after feeding her and let her sleep. Laundry can get done on weekends when your husband is home to help. Enjoy her now!!!
Some babies don't even have a bassinet when they first come home from hospital. Transfer her when you are ready or when she outgrows the bassinet.

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J.D.

answers from Washington DC on

G.,

No worries. None of us knew what we were doing. And, some of us, like me, even after my 3rd in 3 years still don't know what I'm doing half the time. Relax, this is the most challenging job you've ever had, but with absolutely no training. Give yourself time. You're exhausted, probably hungry, and subject to the roller coaster that is your hormones.

The inconsistent sleeping/eating are common, normal and to be expected. If I've learned anything with my 3 boys it that a schedule is only a schedule baby changes it. Do what you think is best, obviously within reason and all for the good of Baby's well being and go with it. If it's a baby idea Baby will tell you and your instinct will kick in and then try something else.

Don't worry about laundry, dog hair and having Kraft mac/cheese 5 nights a week. All that will work itself out in time.

You've just rocked your world. Be kind to yourself and know that your best is absolutely good enough for now.

Good luck, girl. You're no alone. If you want to chat again I'd be happy to hear from you.

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B.D.

answers from Washington DC on

Congrats on your baby girl! First of all, don't worry, every time you are in a stage that you think you can't handle for one more minute, your baby stops doing that and moves onto another stage.
Don't worry about spoiling your daughter, she is too young to be spoiled by constant carrying, and she will actually be more well adjusted and less prone to crying if you do carry her everywhere. Until she is about 6 months old, she needs that constant closeness. Just think, you were carrying her for 9 months in your womb... was she spoiled by that? :) If you do carry her often, she will eventually be more confident than her peers who were encouraged to "cry it out" at such an early age.
I have two recommendations for great baby carriers that you might try. My all time favorite is from the Kangaroo Korner website. It is called the adjustable fleece pouch, and my youngest daughter practically lived in it. You can find them on ebay! Another great carrier is the Ergo, also available on ebay if you don't want to pay full price. If she doesn't seem to like the carriers immediately, give it some time... there is a definite learning curve.
Good luck and good job!

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C.L.

answers from Washington DC on

Try to relax, sometimes babies feel our stress and it stress them out too. Maybe give her a warm bath and just a little down time with you. My perspective comes only from my own experience...I'm 43 and am enjoying my 6th baby, a girl after 5 boys. The boys are 23,22,20,17 and 4 1/2, they grow up so very fast and the "cuddle moments" are gone in no time. Is there someone to help with the dog hair and laundry? Or even the cuddling?

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M.C.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.,

20 minutes cat naps can be perfectly normal. My friend's baby boy actually has this same napping schedule. So I wouldn't worry. And in my experience with my little girl the schedule will change before you know it. It seems that once I developed a routine with my baby girl she changed it on me. So hang in there. I swore by the baby bjorn to get things done around the house. There are many carriers out there but this one was my favorite-if you haven't tried it yet. It's great because the baby can be either facing you or looking out at her new world. It's more expensive but worth every penny. My other suggestion is to lay down for those 20 minutes that your baby is sleeping. It may rejuvenate you enough to actually stay awake to do some laundry in the evening when she goes to bed. Unfortuately during the week it will be difficult to finish the housework but I had to accept the fact that life if different now and it will get done when it gets done. Ask your husband for some extra help too. Just having him throw in a load of wash will give you some relief.
My daughter actually hated her bassinet. She slept in our bed way too long. Its definitely something to nip early on but its really a personal call. If she's in a bassinet it might be easier to transition her into a crib. It was hard for us because she was in our bed and used to sleeping next to me. Just ease her into the transition and give it some time.
good luck!

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K.S.

answers from Washington DC on

G.,
I'm sure you're feeling totally exhausted..I sympathize. I had a child like that, never slept, couldn't put her down for months! Everyone kept telling me to lay her down and let her cry - that didn't work. She would cry for hours without falling asleep. Finally, after she got old enough to sit up on her own, I discovered that she liked being in a jumper seat, the kind that hangs in the doorway. What a relief. My pediatrician told me that this is not uncommon, my daughter was what they call "a high maintenance baby".
As hard as it seems now, this too shall pass, and more quickly than you'll believe. Hold her and love her as much as you can now because they grow up so quickly, you'll never get these days back.
My daughter is now 14 years old and a wonderful teenager and even after what I call 'the nightmare of her first nine months' on this earth, I proceeded to have two more children.
A testament to the fact that you do get past this!!!

You don't need to move your baby to a crib until the bassinet gets too small. If your daughter stretches and can't put her arms or legs out fully, then it's time to move her.

Good luck and enjoy your daughter.

K. S.

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P.S.

answers from Washington DC on

Relax, all babies are different. Your baby feels safe and secure when she is with you. This is why she cries when she is apart from you. Have you tried a "snuggly" or a "Baby Bjorin"? That way you can strap your baby to you, and still have your hands free. I loved mine when my little ones were infants. I would put it on and do my house work, cooking, grocery shopping, or whatever I need to do. It was great.

Good Luck!
P.

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J.S.

answers from Norfolk on

Hello G.! I have a 4 month old and went through the same thing at about the same time. I ended up letting her cry for 10 min. intervals and then returned to comfort her and then leaving again. It was a hard 2 days but she figured it out and just makes noises to get herself to sleep now. Does your daughter take a pacifier? If so, this should be a huge help for comforting her. If not, like my daughter, I waited for her to be able to suck on her hand or fingers so she was able to comfort herself. It was the best thing I have done thus far. As for the bassinet, if she is sleeping 6 hr. periods than I think its time to switch her to her crib. The longer you wait for this...the harder it will be. I used one of those bed positioners for her crib so she had a since of security by being held in place. Lastly, your not creating a monster, but I think they train us more than we train them!! There is nothing wrong with her wanting her mom but it makes it so hard to get things done. Good luck!

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K.A.

answers from Washington DC on

Get a MOBY WRAP. This was the only way I got anything done with my second. It keeps them close, secure, and comforted and you have your hands free to clean, do laundry, dishes....whatever. My daughter would take most of her naps in this and seemed to sleep longer and harder when she was close and could hear my heartbeat and smell me. I could chase my son around and get all the household stuff done as well. There is a listing under local businesses for a great lady who sells them. She'll help you with anything you need! Try it, you won't be sorry!
Feel free to contact me to get the local Moby Wrap consultants phone number!
Hope that helps
Amy

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C.T.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.,
I'm no expert, but I can certainly empathize with your situation. First off I'd say you should count your blessings that your baby is sleeping well at night. 6+ hours at a time is wonderful, and normal for a 12 week old. It was right at this time that I switched my son from the bassinette to the crib and I found that he slept even better once he had a little room to spread out. It is exhausting when the day time sleep gets shorter and shorter, but it's kind of a trade off - babies sleep more at night, thus less during the day. It does make it difficult to get things done, but it's a process, and eventually things will fall in to place. I also think at this point that it is ok to let the baby cry for a little while. You'll undoubtedly get conflicting advice, especially on this topic, but inevitably you'll have to decide what works best for you. First, it's important to understand that babies cry - they don't have another way to communicate really, so even though your daughter might not be in love with the idea of you putting her in the swing or bouncy seat while you change out the laundry, she'll most definitely survive, and probably also learn some valuable self soothing skills (plus she'll see that you do come back and pick her up and play with her). Best of luck to you with returning to work and balancing everything. I know it is a difficult task, but you will get through it :)

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S.D.

answers from Sarasota on

I recommend reading "On Becoming Baby Wise" by Gary Ezzo and Robert Bucknam!

I moved my now 3 year old daughter to a crib at about 3-4 months and my 17 week old boy at about 3 weeks. Every baby is different but I wish I had read that book before having my first daughter who had trouble taking naps as well.

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M.A.

answers from Norfolk on

Hi G... as far as the napping/sleep issues i would highly recommend you read the book baby wise if you haven't already. i used their techniques with my daughter from day one and she has done really well with it. However it is going to require letting her cry some at first so that she learns to put herself to sleep and also so that she learns that she cannot just cry and get mama running..it may sound harsh but it is for her best. She will be a happier and more content child if she can learn to sleep well on her own...plus it will give you some time to get things done, and have some you time:).

Regarding the bassinet i would transfer her now at 12 weeks she is plenty old to be in the crib...use a monitor if it makes you feel better. Eden slept in her crib from day one and we had no problems with it..we just used a monitor.

Good Luck:) hang in there!

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K.C.

answers from Washington DC on

I feel for you, my son was exactly the same way. We used to call him the Feep who wouldn't sleep. Like everyone said, this will get better by about six months. My son was up all night too, so by 12 weeks I was a wreck. I discovered that the trick to getting longer naps was sleeping with him. Then he would take a 3 hour nap in the morning (about 1 hour after getting up) and then cat nap the afternoon away. I was back at work part time, and my babysitter did get him to nap a little longer by keeping him in the car seat, and rocking it when he started to wake up. She would rock him to sleep by swinging the carseat (heavy- he was a chunk at 16lbs by 12 weeks).
You aren't doing anything wrong, and holding her all the time really isn't going to spoil her at this age. Do whatever you need to do to survive the next few months, with the goal of napping in the crib by about 6 months.

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L.D.

answers from Washington DC on

I had similar issues with my daughter. Try letting her cry for 15 minutes. I work for at a doctor's office and one of them told me that the crying usually stops after 15 minutes. I did try that with my daughter when she was about 18 months old and it was 15 minutes to the tee! I used a bassinet and moved my daughter at 6 weeks. Good luck!

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A.C.

answers from Norfolk on

G.,
I am sure that you have gotten a lot of responses for this question, but here goes. If she fusses, let her. She will get used to the idea that laying there and playing or looking around is okay. If she gets hysterical then pick her up, but letting them cry is perfectly okay. My daughter is 19 months old now and I babied her like you are and some days I still can't get anything done! I have learned though that if they are fed, and have clean pants, and you are sure they are all set, then letting them cry will not harm them in any way! Good luck....I know it is hard to hear them cry, but it is okay.
As for the bassinet, our daughter went to a crib at four months.
A.

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T.K.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G.,

You sound like a a busy lady. First, I want to tell you RELAX.! You are not creating a monster by holding her 3 month old when she crys. She is so young and simply needs you. My son was also a very high maintence baby. He wouldn't sleep unless he was next to me for about the first 7 months. Then we "Ferbered" him and he was fine. He's eight now and completely independent at bedtime - but still needs a kiss and hug of course!
You should be proud of yourself for working and being a mom at the same time. It is NOT easy and anyone who says so hasn't done it! I would suggest that you buy a baby bjorn carrier and wear your baby when you are doing your chores around the house. She'll likely fall asleep while you do your thing. If you're lucky, you might be able to transfer her can transfer her to the crib. But if not, don't worry. Hang in there! The more you are there for her now, the less demanding she will be later.
I would suggest moving your daughter to a regular crib once she can push up on her arms and start to roll over. She'll need more room and higher barriers.
Good luck!

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S.

answers from Washington DC on

Lucky you to have a daughter that sleeps at night. Mine had day and night confused and it took a while for her to sleep through the night. I also went back to work when my daughter was 3 months old. There are a lot of opinions out there on the subject, but what worked for us was having her sleep in the bed with us until she was about 10 months old. She just wasn't ready for a bassinet or the crib. You're not creating a monster by holding her when she wants you to, your daughter is obviously very attached to you and keep in mind she's only 3 months old. It goes by so quick, hold has as much as you can, you will miss it one day!

Unfortunatly you're not going to get anything done in terms of chores for a while. If you can, I highly recommend hiring a cleaning service or try having family or friends come over to help you out a little bit. We sent the dog to stay with friends for the first few weeks, it was just too much to take care of a baby and a pet. You might want to ask family or friends if they wouldn't mind doing the same. Believe me it really helps!

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S.S.

answers from Richmond on

Hello G.,
Your baby girl is as normal as she can be! You are lucky too for getting so much sleep at night. Sounds like your baby enjoys and feels most comfortable with your touch and she should. Especially transitioning back to work, she will want to held more as she may be experiencing some separation anxiety. She will gradually work through this stage as she gets a little older but right now she just needs her mama. Around 6 months she will work herself into a 2 nap shcedule (something like 9-11am, and another 2-4pm). But at her age, they do just cat nap and that is actually better because if she gets a good nap during the day, you might have a really bad night. So I suggest you keep trying the bouncey seat and other comfy seats (does she like her car seat?). Right now she is growing and changing so sitting in one position just isnt comfy for her. Everything a baby goes through is temporary. Right when you think you can't take it anymore, they change! Before you know it, she'll be walking and won't want you to hold her (she'll be too busy) and you'll miss these days.
I transitioned my kids to the crib around 16 weeks. Remember the crib is big so I tried to make it "feel" smaller. It also helps if there is some scent of you in the crib.
I'm sure things will get better soon.
Take care,
S.

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A.E.

answers from Washington DC on

Hello,

I am a mother of two and when my husband and I had our first child, I was 32 years of age as well. Responding to your first question, upon your arrival home, you should spend quality time with your new baby. Pamper her in a way that she feels secure....hold her, play with her and kiss her. Talk to her. Feed her and bathe her in warm soothing water...try the "Johnsons baby bath with vapor. Dress her warmly and lay her down. Depending on her weight, you may have to get a crib. If she weighs more that 15 lbs, I would get a crib. Play soft child friendly music for her while you change her and prepare her for bed. This way she will grow accustom to the music and not be afraid to be left alone. As for the laundry and dog hair, just know that the things you used to do will come second. Women are naturally multi tasked so assuming your washer/dryer are in the home with you, wash a load after putting her down each night. If you fall asleep, not to worry, I am sure you get up early enough to put the clothes in the dryer. My husband used to work evenings also when our kids were infants and I just like you had to readjust my schedule and how I did everything. For the most part it is all about reorganizing around your childs time. We all have to do it so don't feel as though you are alone and no one understands. This will give you more patience than you've ever had and more than anything, you will be tired some days but you can rest on the weekends. Also, make Fridays the start of your weekend. Shop Friday evening (put an extra bottle in the bag for the baby). Try to get all that you and the baby need for the following week or two and go home to spend good quality time with the baby. Basically, do a little bit each night to be off on the weekends. God bless you and your family

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L.E.

answers from Richmond on

Hi G.,
First of all you are blessed that your baby sleep at night second you are doing just fine she may just need to feel you close to her, Try one of those baby pouches you ware while you are doing some work in the home until she feels more secure or try laying her down and turning on some music nice soothing music not to loud she may cry for a while the first few times but crying helps with the vocal cords believe me she will not be harmed from crying. transfer from bassinet to crib when they can get up on their knees or lift head up and start pulling up on the side, because if you don't she will be getting out or falling out...GOOD LUCK!!!

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J.S.

answers from Richmond on

Hi, I didn't read all 85 of the prior responses, so I apologize if this duplicates some. But my second son was very similar, except that he did like the swing a lot. But I put him in the baby bjorn while I did housework. He'd just snuggle in where he wanted to be and enjoy the laundry folding or whatever. Regardless of whether this works for you or not, just know that this is almost certainly a phase that she'll grow out of soon. And I know laundry and housework has to be done to a certain extent, but ignore it as much as you possibly can because you only have a few short months of baby, and laundry and housework will be there your whole life :) Good luck!

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R.T.

answers from Dover on

My daughter used to be the same way what I found that worked for me is to put her in the sling I got as a baby shower gift & just do what I needed to do it took a little getting used to wearing & I bumped her into things for the first couple of days until I got used to wearing it.
R.
P.S.
It was great for nursing when we were out too!!

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B.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi, G...
Congratulations on your precious little girl! I have four children and every one has been such a blessing. But I remember having #1 and being a little anxious and overwhelmed. Just remember that you are the parent and you are there to teach her - not the other way around. She's new to the world and isn't exactly savvy to how things work. If you feel it is time to sit in the swing for a little while, then it's time to sit in the swing. Routine is a great thing , starting from birth - it makes little ones feel stable and safe. I would let her sit in her swing every night for 5 minutes, whether she's crying or not, for about a week. By that time, I would think she would start to get used to that routine and may not cry so much. If you feel that more time is good for her in the swing, increase that by a few minutes the next week.
Regarding her inability to sleep more than 20 minutes, I would personally let her cry. Learning to fall asleep is a skill, and sometimes, I've found letting them cry allows them the opportunity to learn that skill. Does she have a set schedule of eating, playing and sleeping during the daytime? Or does she not sleep well all day long? That could make anybody grumpy! (-:
And remember, your life as a wife and woman doesn't change after you have a baby. The baby is a wonderful addition to what you already are and have. She should not take over as the center of the universe once she is born. Don't feel guilty about needing some down time, or time to do the laundry. Doing the other things you need to do doesn't mean you love her any less. Put her in her swing for her routine for a few minutes, to allow you to do some laundry, dishes, or just sit for a few minutes. You will be happier, and in the long run, so will she.
I wish you well - enjoy her!

Also, I would recommend the book Babywise to you, for a point of reference. We and many of our friends have used it and it has done wonders for our family.

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P.L.

answers from Washington DC on

You are spoiling her if you continue you will never get anything done sometimes you have to let her cry for a while not too long but you have to let her no that everything will be alright especially if you know ther is not anything wrong for her and she is not hungry. also to helo her sleep you might want to try and put a pinch or twoof baby cereal in her milk maybe 1 bottle not all of them or maybe a little baby applesause

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H.C.

answers from Washington DC on

G.--WOW!! I remember that SOOOOO well! Needless to say, it does get better. My son is now 9mo and did the EXACT same thing @ 3mo! His "naps"frustrated me so much I almost didn't want to put him down b/c I knew it would upset me to hear him before I could even finish getting a bite to eat and go to the bathroom. He didn't like the front pack until about 4 or 5 mo, so I would carry him to the room I was going to and put him on a blanket on the floor so he could watch me. Child books say that this is what they need at this stage-to see us and know that we're there always. Sometimes he had to cry a little b/c I couldn't physically put clothes away w/ him in my arms. I would talk to him as I did which seemed to soothe him some of the time. Other times I would put him in the front pack facing me so he could hear and feel my heartbeat and even though he might cry a bit, I knew he was safe and I could get a few things done.
The biggest advice I could give would be--do at least 1 of the things you NEED to do before you go to bed. Even if it's just taking the dry clothes out of the dryer and putting them on the couch(or wherever) and putting the next load in--at least you did that 1 thing. The next day while you're w/ your daughter you can fold the clothes w/ her watching. IT DOES GET BETTER!!! If your husband is home during the day does he help w/ household stuff? I know my husband didn't fold things the way I liked, so I would ask him to do things like empty/load the dishwasher, separate the clothes for me, switch the wet/dry clothes. He knew I had certain ways I liked things done, but he would do what he could--he actually liked cleaning the bathrooms and kitchen, so I let him!! :)
Stay positive--my son now takes a 2hr nap in am, 1hr nap around 3, then 1/2hr nap around 5 before going to bed @ 7:30pm until 6am!!
The crib question--We moved him around 3mo b/c he was moving around in the bassinet so much he would wake himself up @ night! Literally as soon as we moved him he slept for about 2 more hours at night!! :) Good luck and write back if you need more ??'s answered! :) Have fun w/ her--she'll love you for it later!! You will also be able to remind her of her own behavior when she has her own baby! :) peace,H.:)

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K.C.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi G...

Congratulations! There's nothing like being a Mom! First, no you absolutely are not creating a monster. Both of my kids loved their swing and took all their naps in it till they were 4 months old. Can your daughter hold her head up on her own? Have you tried a Jolly Jumper? My boys loved it. I didn't use it with my oldest till he was close to out growing it. My youngest would have lived in it if I let him. I also carried my youngest around in one of those baby carriers that you wear like a Baby Bjorn. I'm not one to recommend crying it out, in my opinion they'll have plenty of time for crying later. As for the bassinet - my oldest slept in bed with us till he was 6 months old. I felt I was disturbing him and he wasn't getting a peaceful night's sleep and that's when I put him in the bassinet (yet at 6 months!) He was such a big baby that he had actually outgrown it so that only lasted a couple days. It was a very easy transition to the crib. My youngest slept in a co-sleeper from the time he started sleeping through the night until about 7 months old when he started trying to get out of it. It was an easy transition to the crib for him too.

Good luck!

K. - stay at home Mom of 2 boys, 5 and 22 months.

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W.G.

answers from Washington DC on

I'm an older mom, but I sounds like you are not there in the day and she just needs you when you come home. Let your baby know you are there for her by holding her and talking to her. Try not to worry about the stuff that piles up. If she hates the swing you'll have to respect that. Sounds like she just needs to be held, sweet. Shes just 12 weeks! be close, sing, talk, dance, Get together with other moms and their babes on weekends with your husband so you keep the social network going. W

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C.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Babies that age SHOULD NOT be left alone to cry. Crying is the only means of communication that your baby has with you. If your baby wants you to hold her, then hold her. I really don't understand why people think that it is a bad thing for babies to be held all the time. They are BABIES! Get a moby wrap or maya sling and wear your baby to do the housework and laundry. I recommend following Dr. Sears' advice for sleep/parenting, not any of those "baby trainers".
C.

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