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Help! My baby won't let me put her down.
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Help! My baby won't let me put her down.

My little girl is only 5 weeks old and I am having trouble settling her. The only way I can settle her is if I hold her until she falls asleep. If I try to put her down she starts crying and she ends up so hysterical that I can't stand to leave her, so as soon as I pick her up she starts to settle down again. I love having cuddles and holding her but it makes it very difficult for me to get anything done...even having a shower. She will not fall asleep unless I am holding her and when she finally falls asleep I have to wait at least 20 minutes so I know for sure she is in a deep sleep to put her to bed otherwise she just wakes up screaming again until I pick her up. After feeding, it takes at least an hour and a half before she will fall asleep again...is this normal?

She is my first baby so I'm not sure if it's normal, or if I have done something wrong. Does anyone have any ideas on how I can get her to let me put her down without crying?
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138725_tn?1278063590
Honey, I feel your pain.  I think we all went through a patch like this.  I know we did. There was a stage where DH and I would eat in shifts...okay you hold her now and I eat.  My SIL went through the same too.  I know it's tough, but it will pass, just keep working at it.
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213739_tn?1215489609
My daughter did that for the first 18 months of her life.  Nap time meant we settled into the recliner, I had a drink, food, the phone, remote, etc. and I couldn't MOVE once she was asleep or that meant naptime was OVER.  I totally feel your pain and I think it's common for the little ones to want to be held.  However, I think I also created a monster as she is now 6 and still wants to sleep in our bed.  She doesn't but she tries every night!!!  I think it's very common with a first born as we have the TIME to hold them. My son is opposite of this. He won't sleep in my arms, he wants to be in his own bed- it's like torture if he has to sleep with us, and he is an amazing sleeper.  It's so funny to see how different they are. I'm due in 3 weeks with #3 and I'm guessing, he'll be a good sleeper too since with the others, you don't have time to hold them all the time.  It's normal and you may have to let her cry a little.  You can try to establish a routine and try giving her a small lovey.  My little guy won't go to sleep without his blanket and it's a lifesaver because he'd rather the blanket than me rock him.  Sometimes though, letting them cry is the only thing that works. I used to be a parent educator where I trained parents on their children through home visits birth to age 3 and the American Academy of Ped. recommends not letting them cry it out until 6 weeks so I'd give her another week or two and then you can research the different methods such as Ferber, etc.  Just google "infant sleep methods" and you should pull some up.  It might be hard at first but honestly, from experience, if you can establish a good sleep routine early on, it does help. There will always be bumps in the road and kids always change patterns but if they learn to put themselves back to sleep, you will eliminate a lot of the problems.  Good luck!
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Avatar_f_tn
I have a DD that is just the same. You described her perfectly. The first few months were really tough because she only wanted to be held and rocked and no matter what I tried she did not settle on her own (My DSs were much better with this so I am not sure if it is more a girl thing). Anyhow, she is almost 5 months now and I am happy to report that she is getting better because she can entertain herself more and she sleeps a bit longer between feedings (and she is quicker at a feeding). However, I do still have to feed her and wait until I hear her snore before I place her down to sleep. My DSs were all about going to sleep on their own and could care less about the cuddling, so this is new to me too. The one thing that has also helped is the swing- she will nap in it during the day (if she is a bit drowsy when I put her in it). It will get better, don't worry, but yes, it is exhausting. I have come to think it must be normal for some babies to want cuddling and attention and it is wiring their brains for later in life so it's worth it. Hang in there!!
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145992_tn?1341348674
Totally normal.  Some babies can be put down, some want to be close to mommy.  My son I could put down but during the evening hours, he wasn't hearing it.  I used to wear him in my baby bjorn to get dinner done or to wash bottles.  He would wind up falling asleep while I carried him.  He liked the swing as well but not during night time.  When I would put him down for bed, I would have to hold him or lay with him until he was out cold, then I could put him in the bassinet.  They outgrow it at some point and actually carried babies tend to be more secure and independent as they get older.  It's just a short while in the babies life that they are like this.  I know it's exhausting but once you get through this stage it gets a little easier.  Good luck.
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189192_tn?1261345228
My son was the same way. I finally just accepted that everything else could wait and I would just hold him.  Don't worry, it gets better.  My son hardly ever cries now and I really believe that it is at least partly due to how much I held him, and made him feel safe.  I also found that the swing worked wonders. I would hold him tell he fell asleep and then move him to the swing.  He would sleep much longer in the swing than he did the bed.  I also used the bouncy seat.  Sometimes he liked it sometimes he did.  You just have to keep trying different things.  One week he might hate the swing, the next week he'll love it.  

Oh and if you aren't using a paci, I would recommend starting.  It works wonders.. my son is 8 months now. I still let him use it, but only at bed and nap times.  

Good luck to you and your baby.  I say, sit yourself down on the couch grap the remote and just enjoy this time with you baby.  Before you know it, she won't want to be held so much anymore.  She will want to be down on the ground playing with toys and you will wish you could get her attention.  

Enjoy mom...
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Avatar_f_tn
Congratulations energy_train on your third...not long to go :)

Thanks for all your replies and advice. I'm glad to hear it is a normal phase that some babies go through, I was a bit worried something was wrong. Some of my family had been telling me I am picking her up too much as well...I guess that could be why she is like this...It probably hasn't helped..but she has been like it from birth too and it was really hard to let her cry then and still because she is so tiny.

I have heard lots of times now that slings and the swings are really good so I might have to invest in both lol.

xox
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