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Women's Health: Postpartum Community
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377493 tn?1356505749

Seperation Anxiety

Ryder has just turned 7 months.  I am still off work and he and I are pretty much joined at the hip.  DH and I pretty much only participate in things we can bring him to, and just make sure we have quality time at night after he goes to bed (at home..romantic dinner and rent a movie sort of thing, have a few friends over sometimes..that sort of thing). Point is, Ryder should not be feeling insecure.  He gets tonnes and tonnes of attention.  He is going through what I think is pretty normal seperation anxiety where I am concerned.  He gets very very upset if I am out of his sight for even a minute (just to go to the bathroom).  I am working around it and not that big a deal.  The big problem is naps and bedtime.  He needs pretty much 2 naps a day, and 7-8 is usually bath and bedtime.  He absolutey will not sleep in his own bed suddenly.  He will only go to sleep if I am laying next to him.  Now, I am much more comfortable with co-sleeping now that he is bigger, and I do do it safely.  Problem is, I don't want to go to bed at 8..lol.  And I am not comfortable laying down with him until he is asleep, then leaving him in our bed alone. When I try to move him to his own bed, he wakes up and screams his head off. Same thing happens with naps.  Any advice or suggestions? Leaving him to cry it out is not something I am comfortable with.
9 Responses
134578 tn?1546634665
I got the book by Dr. Sears that has the words "Sleep Solutions" in the title.  He sure has a wealth of good suggestions.  You might look it up; I got it on Amazon.  He's a co-sleeping guy, so will not be recommending "cry it out" based stuff.
134578 tn?1546634665
"The Baby Sleep Book: The Complete Guide to a Good Night's Rest for the Whole Family" is the name of the book I was thinking of by Dr. Sears.  I also really liked "The No-Cry Sleep Solution," by Elizabeth Pantley "and William Sears," though I think he mostly just wrote the intro to that book.  On Amazon, her book is more highly rated than his by users.  Both books give you science and gentle, sensible methods, not just lore and stories.
377493 tn?1356505749
The weird thing is, he was doing great in his own bed.  He was doing the odd night of 7 or 8 hours, although for the most part he was waking up every 4.  I just figured I would let him increase the time as he was ready and because I am at home, it really wasn't a big deal.  It's just recently he will not go to bed without me.  Last night he slept 8 hours, but only with me.  I truly have no issue with co sleeping, its just getting him to sleep all of a sudden.  In the last few months, I just watched his cues and as his eyes got heavy (rubbing them) he would go straight down.  Now no matter how tired he is he wont' unless I'm there.  It's really odd...it's like he is going backward or something.  But I will get both those books. I am glad there are alternatives as everyone continues to tell me to just let him scream.  I don't mind letting him fuss a little, but not crying his little eyes out.
1035252 tn?1427231433
hey girl it's completely normal at his age...Kahlan went through the same thing...from about 7-10 months she had to be curled up on my arm to fall asleep...and we just went with it because at that point we weren't planning another baby yet...and it worked out just fine. she continued to co-sleep with us (although after 10 months she no longer needed coddling to go to bed because she felt secure) until she was about 17 months, and then we moved her to her own toddler bed in our room and we thought it would be a big issue...but now she is DONE with mommy and daddy's bed and always asks to be put in "kaykay's bed!"....so I think that a huge part of sleeping solutions is listening to your child and your intuition and doing what feels right...and I think that almost every problem will resolve itself as long as your child doesn't have some underlying issue that keeps them from progressing as an independent sleeper.


plenty of clingy co-sleepers as infants turn into independent toddler and childhood sleepers, in my experience...and it's proven true for Kahlan. she used to need back-rubbing, and shushing, and cuddling..now you put her in bed with a sippy of water, give her a book (after you read the first couple pages of course!), her teddy bear, a blankie and her pillow...and zonk! she's out without any sort of encouragement. some nights it takes longer, but she always does it on her own.


i truly truly do not believe in letting them cry it out. I refused to do that with kahlan, and I will refuse to do it with Grey...I know it works for some people and honestly it's not harmful, I just don't believe in it from my parenting standpoint.
377493 tn?1356505749
Thanks so much again.  

I have a question that sort of relates to this...is it possible that some babies just need less sleep?  In addition to only wanting to sleep with me, Ryder will sleep about 8 hours at night (not necessarily straight though, but still...)  In the last week he takes less naps and for shorter periods of time.  Everything I read says they should sleep at this age app. 14 hours of a 24 hour period. He is not getting even close to that..I would say more like 10.  Yet he is cheerful and happy..no health issues..he just had a check up and all was well.  Could he really need that little sleep?  Or is this just part of the "phase"..lol.  
1035252 tn?1427231433
it could be normal for him...just like adults, all babies are individuals and some need more sleep than others..as long as he's not overly fussy during his awake periods and his appetite stays healthy, I wouldn't worry. you can't force him to sleep and without any indication of a problem you can continue to let him choose his schedule. it's only if he appeared to suffer from lack of sleep then you would need to worry, but you have never given any sort of indication of that and believe me....babies and toddlers are unlivable when they're not getting enough sleep, so you would know LOL.

I can't say entirely from experience though because both of my babies are marathon-sleepers...Kahlan can go 10-13 hours at night and still take a nap during the day (and Heaven save you if you try to wake that child before 930AM), and Grey sleeps even more than she did at this point...but I do have friends whose babies weren't big sleepers and I think that they got around the same amount that you've mentioned with Ryder.

it could also just be a phase...right before they hit a milestone, both of my babies become zombies and sleep WAY less than they normally do (grey was up every 1-2 hours the night before he started smiling)....Kahlan will sometimes only sleep 5-6 hours at night and refuse her naps...and then as soon as they reach the milestone they go back to normal sleeping. I had a friend say that their brains are working extra hard to take that next step so it's hard for them to relax and fall asleep...and as crazy as that sounds i've always noticed it in the days leading up to a milestone. When Kahlan starts sleeping less I always know she's about to learn something new and big...she slept 4 hours a night for the 2 nights before she took her first steps, lol.
176135 tn?1314756238
I read every book on baby sleep I could get my hands on because dd didn't sleep through the night even once until she was 21 months old- and I have the wrinkles and gray hairs to prove it!  My favorite by far was "The No Cry Sleep Solution": it has gentle, effective methods that work.
377493 tn?1356505749
I am definately getting that book.  Just to give you an example...today.  It is now 10:30 pm and he has finally gone to sleep.  He did sleep in a bit today...9:30 am, and has probably napped a total of about an hour and a half, all in short spurts.  He did get a bit cranky tonight, but for the most part is smiley and wants to play.  I tried everything..lol.  I walked him forever, read to him for quite some time (I don't usually let him play with toys after bath as it's supposed to be quiet time), he had his bottle, I rocked him, sat next to him and rubbed his back and forhead gently..nothing worked!!  He just laughs and starts grabbing at my glasses. Impossible not to laugh back of course.  I do hope it's just a phase.  I really don't mind the not sleeping through the night as he is my only child so it's easy to work around his schedule.  But it would be nice to either have him go to bed on his own again, or at least go to bed a bit earlier.  Oh well, I guess they do what they are going to do!  Thanks for the input everyone.
134578 tn?1546634665
Not only is the No Cry Sleep Solution really good, but there is a second book, about toddlers and preschoolers, by the same author.
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