Babies, sleep and stressed out Mama’s!

sleepy vega

Ah! Sleep… it’s one of those things that you don’t know how much you love until suddenly it vanishes! Whoever said ‘sleeping like a baby’ had obviously not met too many babies. We were blessed with a first baby who loved to sleep. She slept through from around 8 weeks old, and slept for 12 hours a night. Every. Single. Night. Teething, illness, outside noise… nothing bothered her. She loved to sleep {and to be fair, she still does!}. We thought we had this parenting lark sussed… scoffed at those who said it was hard, or their babies didn’t sleep. Not us – we had that magic touch. Or so we thought….

To be honest, we’ve not had any really ‘bad sleepers’. Our second slept trhough from around 12 weeks, 12 hours a night until she was 1-ish, then she’d wake at some point in the night and end up in our bed. But that I don’t mind – as long as we sleep, I really don’t mind who sleeps where. The third did the same, slept through form quite little, then from around 10 months or so she’d be in with us {or I in with her}.

I love co-sleeping, truthfully, I just love sleeping. I’m happy for the kids to sleep with us AS LONG AS THEY SLEEP – that was always my rule. You want to sleep in Mama’s bed?? Then sleep and not wriggle. Or chat. Or demand to play!

There are people who say you should never let a child sleep in your bed. For you’ll never get them out. Our second and third both had periods of sleeping in our bed, at least for part of the night. And now at 6 and 9 they no longer sleep in our bed – though they do share a bad the two of them – they love to snuggle up!

Mr Beastie is prob the worst sleeper we’ve had. And he’s pretty good compared to some babies. HE slept through for a while, but currently we’re averaging two wake-ups a night. He generally does actually want to feed – so I don’t mind a food pit-stop. We’ve had a couple of hourly wake-up nights and those are T.O.U.G.H. I’m not one of those people who can survive on 4 hours sleep. Gimme 8 hours solid and I might only need 1 coffee to kick start my system.

Right now, I’m trying to hold on to the fact that he won’t need to feed at night for ever {please tell me he won’t?!} Some nights I really love those middle of the night cuddles. More often than not they’re a quick five minute top up and he’s straight back down in his cot. He’s most likely my last baby, so truthfully I’m relishing all the baby-ness before it is finished. After three other kiddos, I think I have way more patience this time around, that’s not to say some days I struggle, those sleepless nights really do take their toll.

WaterWipes have produced a series of 15 different two-minute, snackable, advice-led videos called “Take 2 for Mums” designed to help first time mums and dads cope as new parents. In this one, Teresa Boardman, Sleep Therapist gives her expert insights on parent’s sleep and stress.

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20 Comments

  1. November 9, 2015 / 10:27

    Oh I can relate to so much of this. My two older kids 5 and 19 months sleep brilliant now but that wasn’t always the way but we’re back to night feed with the 3 month old. They nap together in the morning but I have so much to do with work and the blog that I chose not to nap with them.

    He won’t need night feeds forever ;-)

  2. November 9, 2015 / 11:30

    Ah you’re so lucky with your good sleepers! I love waking up after a night of uninterrupted sleep, bliss! Ebony wakes up once still and usually comes in our bed. I don’t mind, in fact I actually quite like it that we all snuggle up together. I know I’ll miss it when it stops xx

  3. November 9, 2015 / 13:02

    I am laughing (and crying) at this post. I wrote about exactly the same thing today. My eldest is 11 and sleep issues are still alive and kicking in our home :(

  4. November 9, 2015 / 15:21

    How I wish I produced sleepers, none of mine sleep more than 10 hours even now, I to co-sleep for hope they will sleep longer.
    Videos are a fab xx

  5. November 9, 2015 / 15:28

    I love my sleep and need sleep. I can get by on 5 hours when I need to but I’m an eight hour sort of gal. My oldest 2 boys were pretty good sleepers I don’t remember having too many problems with them when they were little. Just hoping the new one due in Jan likes sleep too. #love2blog

  6. Jenna
    November 9, 2015 / 20:42

    Oh the newborn days were easy for us – all my baby did was sleep and boy were we smug! Now she’s 19 months and is a terrible sleeper! That’s teach us!! xx

  7. November 9, 2015 / 21:08

    Oh I do envy you having good sleepers! Sleepless nights are the worst, I’m up most nights with both my girls, the eldest has started suffering with night terrors and the youngest has always been a poor sleeper – we occasionally co-sleep but she’s such a fidget its just as bad as having to keep getting up to her! Hope you get a full night soon x

  8. November 9, 2015 / 21:27

    I wish I had sleepers! I have a co sleeper cot this time which I love but my 3 month old is still up every 2-3 hours.

  9. November 9, 2015 / 22:05

    Pip was a pretty good sleeper – I am praying the next one is too, otherwise I am doomed. I really don’t do well on no sleep!

  10. November 9, 2015 / 22:52

    Sleep deprivation is a hard one! I really experienced it with my first. She slept through from really early on but it turned out that it was her body’s way of conserving energy because she wasn’t getting enough milk! Once we sorted that, she woke up MASSES. I’m talking every hour beyond the first year. Bedsharing was our friend. That and daytime naps with her, as you can do with your first baby. My second was an amazing sleeper, sleeping through FROM THE START. It was such a shock, I really worried about her. But then separation anxiety kicked in at nine months and she started waking up. Some nights it’s just a couple of times, which is fine, I flop a breast out and we both drift back to sleep. But we have phases (teething, illness, developmental or growth spurt) where it’s every half hour and them is tough times! That said, if I decide to go to bed earlier and just do what’s necessary the next day (rather than all the extra things I think I need to do but really don’t), it’s not really an issue. I find the biggest deal with most areas of struggle with the babies is the worry and stress we work ourselves into. Biscuits, chats and an early night. :)

  11. November 9, 2015 / 23:00

    Sleep deprivation is the WORST! And it just makes everything else terrible. Neither of mine have been good sleepers but F is worse and still wakes up every couple of hours. We’ve ended up co-sleeping just to save a bit of sanity. I do love it though x

  12. November 10, 2015 / 09:34

    Wilf spends the night in our bed every night, usually from around midnight, sometimes a bit later but last night he just kept waking up a talking! I think he must have been having crazy dreams as every hour it was ‘mama? What about the owl by the door?’. I woke up with burning tired eyes this morning and thought ‘uh oh! taste of things to come again!’ x

  13. November 10, 2015 / 10:12

    My first was not a sleeper at all so I think he trained me into getting used to no sleep so now when my second who is a fab sleeper has a little blip it is nothing in comparison and I can handle lack of sleep a lot easier.

  14. November 10, 2015 / 11:02

    You are very lucky having good sleepers and I’m sure your little boy will catch. Although I do sometimes wonder whether girls sleep better than boys. From my NCT classes, all if us who had boys (including me) have had lots of sleep problems. The ones with girls not so much. Thankfully Rowan is a brilliant sleeper now but it did take longer and he didn’t sleep through until around 11 months. His naps are a different matter!!! They’ve been a struggle.x

    • November 15, 2015 / 14:04

      I’m hoping he sleeps through soon – he’s not a great napper either!

  15. November 10, 2015 / 14:19

    I’m so used to getting up at night at this stage. Any time between 10 and 12 chloe can cry looking for her dodie but she doesn’t wake. She does it her sleep and she’ll be OK until 5 and I do the same thing then until she wakes at 730. Her brother was the same. I love my sleep too but me and hubby rotate nights.

    • November 15, 2015 / 14:04

      I wish my husband could take turns! Vega still wants boob when he wakes so it has to be me!

  16. November 10, 2015 / 14:23

    The thing I’ve found with my second baby is that sleep is SUCH an emotive thing. We’ve had terrible runs of no sleep and constant wake-ups with her and are only now, at 13 months (cross fingers!) starting to fall into a more reliable, manageable sleep pattern. Sleep deprivation is true torture and has left me questioning my own sanity at some points this past year. But the thing I found really hard was the constant pressure on me as a mum to “get her sleeping” or “sort her out” and the constant negativity about her lack of ability to settle “Ooh, you’ve got a bad baby there” or “Ooh isn’t she naughty”. When I was tired and feeling low anyway, I didn’t want anyone to criticise my baby or make me feel like I was doing something wrong because she wouldn’t sleep!

  17. Jess
    November 12, 2015 / 13:53

    Ahh sleep deprivation! Abbie didn’t sleep through till she was almost 2, and even now it’s not every day! Last week she was poorly too which meant 4.30 wake up on one day! It was horrible! But thankfully she’s back to normal now!! x

    • November 15, 2015 / 14:02

      ugh – it’s harder I think when you’re not used to it isn’t it?!

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