Lately, I feel like I say/think/write the same sentences over and over again:  “I am so tired,” “Henry gave me a run for money last night,” and “Where the hell is my coffee?”  Completely obvious statement of the century:  babies are exhausting.  I feel a little bad complaining about it because – of course – Henry is wonderful, and I also realize that his sleeping could be LOADS worse.  But after three straight months of horrendous sleep, this pattern is really getting to both the Husband and me.  A secondary issue, but it’s also making writing the blog pretty difficult – hence my occasional radio silence!


So – I would love some advice from the experienced mommas out there.  People just keep telling us to ‘wait and pray,’ and that one night, he’ll just sleep better.  Currently, this is what he does:  I put him to sleep around 8 – 9 PM after a bottle; he wakes up anytime from 11 PM – 1 AM for another bottle; and then he’s up at 4, maybe 5, 6, and/or 7.  He’s in bed for a long time; it’s just the constant wake-ups that are killing us.  Occasionally, the timing is ideal and we only get woken up twice, but more often than not, we’re up four times for soothings or feedings (which we split responsibility on – I pump bottles).  Sometimes he eats an entire bottle but sometimes he just snacks.  Up to this point, I’ve just been following his cues, but I’m starting to think that I could do something differently to make it easier.  Thoughts?!


In honor of Henry’s amazing ability to wake up four times in a seven-hour period and still laugh, coo, and smile his way through the day (how?!), here is a fun sleep infographic.  Side note:  not that I need an excuse, but I am eagerly anticipating National Napping Day, which falls on March 11 this year.

sleep infographic

Infographic Source



  • Michelle @ Eat Move Balance September 9, 2012, 11:11 am

    The infographic is sooooo interesting! I apparently sleep like a soldier. 🙂

    And who knew sleep deprivation will kill you before starvation?!? Eek.

  • Brooke September 9, 2012, 11:23 am

    The first couple weeks I think going by cues is best but now that he is older I think a schedule would help. He probably really isn’t hungry he is just eating out of habbit/comfort. If it hasn’t been at least 4-5 hours since his last feeding (at night) then I would try soothing him other ways and laying him back down. With my son I made the mistake of nursing him whenever he woke up and finally at 6 months when he was still getting up every couple of hours and eating I realized it needed to change! It is so hard though because as you know you can’t force them to sleep! With my daughter ( who is now 7 months) I am adamant not to feed her at night unless it’s been a large chunk of sleep. She still wakes up once but that sure beats multiple times. Good luck, it is so hard!!! And remember they can get in a a bad habit so quickly that takes days to break!!

    • Danielle September 9, 2012, 1:42 pm

      I think he needs a schedule too:)

      • Nicole September 9, 2012, 7:50 pm

        Agreed. Take this for what it’s worth (non-mom), but I recommend French Kids Eat Everything. It’s primarily about how French children eat and why it’s so different than Americans. However, there is a secondary part of the book regarding infants and breastfeeding. Most moms put their kids on a schedule immediately so that the child will learn the traditional French way of eating (i.e. scheduled meal times, no snacks). I’d personally suggest putting Henry on a schedule and letting him cry it out/soothing him a little and putting him back down as he adjusts. It’s the only way he’ll learn to sleep through the night.

  • Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) September 9, 2012, 11:33 am

    That’s pretty fascinating! I’m suffer from sleep deprivation these days and my boys are 14 and almost 12! My oldest started high school this year and school starts at 7am! This has led to us waking up at 5:30am most days and since I’m a personal trainer with clients that like to get things done in the morning, I wake up at 4:45 some mornings to train them. It’s hard to get in bed and asleep by 8:45pm to get 8 hours of sleep on those super early days! I’m hoping to used to this schedule soon! My body is just done by Friday! I hope Henry starts to sleep a little more for you guys soon! Sleep deprivation is just so hard!

  • Ellen September 9, 2012, 11:38 am

    My nephew (who I take care of) has always been the same way. He just does NOT like to sleep, and he’s still almost always in a good mood. At 15 months he still gets up at least twice in the middle of the night. I hope you can find a solution so you can nip it in the bud now rather than later. 🙂

  • Morgan September 9, 2012, 11:40 am

    I know this is the worst thing to tell a sleep deprived Mama, but have you thought about cutting caffeine out of your diet? My daughter started sleeping through the night within 3 days of me cutting out all caffeine, so apparently she was feeling it even if it wasn’t obvious. I never fed on a schedule, we did on demand from the time she was born until 14 months when she weaned. However, she was an awesome sleeper, once I cut out the caffeine, sleeping about 12-14 hours at night. I had to feed her more often during the day, every 2 hours until she was about 9 months old, but I think that was just her making up for the night time.

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 11:52 am

      I have thought about it but I’m SOOO SCARED to do it because that means I will be suffering HARDCORE for at least three days. LOL.

      • Morgan September 9, 2012, 11:57 am

        I know, I resisted for a while, and finally did it while my mom was visiting so that she could help me. My husband works very long hours and he is a pilot so he really cannot be up all night with baby, I am pretty sure most people like their pilot to be well rested:)

        It is terrible for a couple of days, but in the end totally worth it if it works!

        • Brittany (healthy slice of life) September 9, 2012, 1:11 pm

          I didn’t drink caffeine either because if I did, I could tell it bothered Hailey. Also, if he’s not hungry I wouldn’t feed him during the night. During the day let him eat all he wants. It worked for us and h was sleeping through the night (10-5ish) by 4 weeks ish. Of course, I contribute it to also being seriously lucky and getting a good sleeper.

      • Tammy Root September 9, 2012, 4:39 pm

        Try cutting it out gradually – do half decaf and half regular for a little bit then 3/4 decaf and 1/4 regular, etc. I cut caffiene when I found out I was pregnant and I still do not drink caffeine. Your body adjusts. It’s pretty amazing. 🙂

        • Tammy Root September 9, 2012, 5:13 pm

          One other piece of advice…my pediatrician recommended I give Marea camomile tea mixed with breast milk. I do one ounce of tea and 3 ozs of milk. She has that every night between 6-7pm. Originally, we used it for evening fussiness and now she just loves it. But, you could try giving that to Henry during one of his late night feedings, maybe it will relax him enough to sleep longer, and/or maybe it will help with weaning him from the feeding because this is essentially watered down milk.

          • Tammy Root September 9, 2012, 5:19 pm

            Oh, thought of something else — 😉 (I read the comments and then think of things!). I think Henry is just not ready to sleep through the night. With Marea she was up as much as Henry and just one day out of the blue she slept 6 hours straight, then 7 hrs, and now she sleeps from about 8pm until 5am with an occasionally midnight feeding. We didn’t do anything different to promote this extra stretch of sleep. She just did it on her own. She is 16 weeks (12 weeks gestationally). I know it might not last — lots of babies have sleep regressions — but we are enjoying it!

          • Jessica September 9, 2012, 8:38 pm

            YES! I totally agree- I think he just isn’t ready to sleep through the night. I honestly think he is too young to be “put on a schedule.” My son is five months tuesday and we really just started within the last week cutting out some night feedings. We are down to two now. If he wakes up and it hasn’t been “long enough” (which I determined thru trial and error to be about five hours at first stretch and then 3.5-4 after) then I send my husband in to sooth him; i am the only one to feed him so he knows that if husband is there, no food just soothe- he adjusted well to this in about a week. Im fine with 2 feedings- some nights it is just one. I didn’t feel he was “ready” for this until he was about 4.5 months. He is on the small side and that contributed to me feeling he wasn’t ready. ALSO he sleeps so poorly in those am hours because these are the hours of least sound sleep. Zach went through those crazy wake ups for about month now but seems to be resolved of it (knock on wood). Ive read up A LOT on this stuff 😉 AAAALLLSSOOO (sorry this is long winded) around 4 months we started trying to put him down a little awake sometimes so he got used to “putting himself back to sleep.” When they develop object permanence, if they fell asleep in your arms, they wake up in their crib and are suuuuper confused (like if you woke up on your front lawn). Anyway, I feel your pain! I definitely nap when he does in the am- it is the only way I can get by!

      • Tricia September 9, 2012, 5:38 pm

        I promise you will survive without caffeine. I had friends who celebrate lent and were whining about how hard lent was, so I did it with them and gave up caffeine. Its been about 4.5 years now, and I don’t miss it!

  • Jessie @ Graze With Me September 9, 2012, 11:41 am

    Wow! Those sleep facts are crazy. Lucky koala mamas.

    Some suggestions: swaddling, earlier bedtime (6-7 pm) with a set routine (bath, pj’s, book/lullaby, nurse), try soothing him in the middle of the night before immediately offering food; maybe every other wake-up?, pacifier can help babies self soothe to sleep, room darkening shades if it’s still light out, sound machine….I’m sure I’ll think of more but that’s all I got for now!

    • Ashley September 9, 2012, 1:27 pm

      All excellent suggestions.

      But honestly? He’s just still too young to expect long periods of sleep just yet. My daughter just started STTN at 6 months old (she’s 9 months now). And yet, she will still have the occasional wake up. Some babies just don’t sleep well or for long periods of time. I second another posters’ suggestion of “sleep when the baby sleeps”. Really, I know we like to be “super moms” most days, but when they are this young, it’s all about survival. Napping is a lifesaver. Do it now when you have just 1, lol. I have a 4 year old son as well, and would KILL to be able to nap when my daughter naps, but that doesn’t work when you have another one at home, lol.

      • megan September 9, 2012, 7:53 pm

        I agree. am not a crying it out fan and i think that is probably the only way to actually get a baby to sleep through the night. and cio just breaks my heart.

      • Heather September 9, 2012, 8:54 pm

        I totally agree. My son is 6 months old and still up 2-3 times per night to nurse. We’ve tried everything and read every book to decrease his night wakings but have just come to accept that it is what it is. Also, he is breastfed…. breastmilk digests SO quickly and easily that your child could still be legitimately hungry during those wakings. My son nursed every 2 hours around the clock until 5 months. Now he goes 2 hours during the day and 3-4 hours at night (he also gets solids 1x a day). Again, it is what it is. He’ll only be a baby once. I know it’s hard. Believe me. There are still nights that I just don’t know how I’ll go on… but somehow… as mommas, we just do! 🙂 Good luck!

  • Alison September 9, 2012, 11:42 am

    Have you considered going back to sleeping in the same room? I know this is a hot topic, but cosleeping is what allows us all to feel rested with a 10 week old. We use the cosleeper for part of the night until he wakes for his first feeding, and then he’s in bed with us until morning, nursing on and off at about the same schedule you’ve described. If cosleeping isn’t for you, perhaps sleeping in his room on a separate bed might minimize the amount of time you’re vertical… simply staying horizontal helps me feel more rested!

    We adhere to Dr. Sears’ school of thought “sleep wherever everyone gets the most sleep”.

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 11:51 am

      I have thought about it but 2 – 4 months is the prime time for SIDS and he’s 3 so I really don’t want to move him out yet.

      • Crystal September 9, 2012, 12:14 pm

        The only way I have ever gotten sleep is cosleeping too. We were up 10 times last night, but I didn’t have to get up so it wasn’t awful. It sucked, but it could be worse.

    • Meredith September 9, 2012, 12:36 pm

      x2 on the co-sleeping. I have a 15 week old and he starts the night in his room and sleeps about 4-5 hours and then comes into bed with me for the rest of the night. He likes to eat every 2 hours or so after the first wake up and it’s just easier to have him in bed where I nurse him side-lying and we both get back to sleep quicker.

    • Elizabeth September 9, 2012, 2:51 pm

      Another cosleeping vote. I was too nervous to do this with our first (now two year old) daughter, but with our second, born August 1, it’s saving my sanity. She goes down in her bassinet for the first stretch so I can get some me time to stretch out in the bed but she’s in our bed after the first wakeup (usually two hours but woohoo four last night!). The thing about cosleeping is that the two hour wakeups don’t kill you because you’re barely awake (esp if your husband does diaper duty). It also allows baby to get that snuggly skin to skin time they crave. I guess if you’re pumping while Henry takes a bottle it different.

      • Amanda September 9, 2012, 4:05 pm

        All about the cosleeping here! It was my life saver. I know they say there are risks associated with it, but it worked miracles for us. To each her own though 🙂

      • Liz23 September 9, 2012, 4:22 pm

        Another cosleeper here! I haven’t ever really complained much about sleeping because since I sleep with my little guy, it doesn’t really bother me much! My guy does not sleep through the night and he’s 16 months! (though last night he actually did!) He gets up at least once to nurse at night (mostly 2 times) but since I’m right there all I got to do is turn over and and we both go back to sleep quickly. I’ve hardly ever had a bad night except when he’s teething.

        • Claire September 9, 2012, 9:38 pm

          We co-sleep as well; up until 4 months we used the arms’ reach co-sleeper (so I just had to pull my daughter over to nurse and then put her back when she was done, I never even had to sit up fully, which was fantastic!) and we’re still bed sharing at 9 months, and I find it’s the best way to bond since I’m at work during the day. My little girl still nurses 1-3 times a night (which is down from an average of 3-6 times up until two months ago!), but I feel really well rested. 4 months was rough due to the 4-month sleep regression, but I work 40-50 hours a week and feel fine, even with the wake-ups. I think bed sharing is part of the reason that I feel good most days.

          Also, I don’t drink caffeine at all – not because I think it would affect my girl’s sleep, but because I know that it comprises MY health! I feel much better without caffeine, it makes a HUGE difference in my general energy levels. In fact, even with the almost full year of sleep deprivation, I feel better generally than before I got pregnant, now that I don’t drink alcohol or caffeine.

          I’m more of an AP type of parent; I don’t believe in sleep training (especially a baby so young, my pediatrician says that some babies even need milk overnight up to a year old!), but I really liked No Cry Sleep Solution by Pantley. Even most of the experts don’t recommended sleep training until at least four months, I believe.

          But all that said, the wake-ups you mention sound really normal, in fact not too bad at all! I’m assuming that you nap regularly, since you work at home and set your own schedule? Even the naps I get to take on weekends help a lot. If you’re that wrecked all the time, with only one or two wake-ups on average, then maybe you should get your thyroid level checked or something? Maybe you’re pushing yourself too hard with work – remember, lots of women are just now returning to work at 3 months! You’re still recovering from birth and everything associated with it, and breastfeeding takes up a lot of energy as well!

  • Erica September 9, 2012, 11:48 am

    Hang in there! I swear…I wanted to smack everyone when they said it will get easier and easier as time goes on and they will FINALLY sleep…but it really does happen!

  • Kristin September 9, 2012, 11:48 am

    Love the info graphic! Especially the sleep positions. Thanks!

  • kim @ vegan mama September 9, 2012, 11:51 am

    You’ve probably already heard of this book, but I love “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child” by Marc Weissbluth. I think he has some really good advice, and he’s not a staunch supporter of either sleep training extremes (crying it out vs. ….not crying it out?)

    Henry is still at that age where a lot of babies just haven’t developed consistent sleep schedules yet. My daughter is 7 months old, and we are just now falling into a schedule, but she’s still up 2 times a night (on a good night).

    I wonder if putting Henry to bed a little earlier might help? I’ve heard around his age, they tend to start needing an earlier bedtime. I’ve also heard the time of 4-6 am people of all ages are the most restless in their sleep, so it make sense that Henry is waking a lot during that time.

    Do you use a white noise machine? Do you have room darkening shades? Both of those things really help us out. Sometimes we run an additional fan while she’s sleeping for extra white noise.

    I know exactly how you’re feeling – I was up 3 times last night. I hope it gets better for you guys soon!

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 11:53 am

      We do use a white noise machine and I think that helps a LOT. We’ve used it since the day he came home.

      RE: going to bed earlier, doesn’t that just mean he’ll get up earlier?!

      • Cassie September 9, 2012, 11:55 am

        Actually yeah, going to bed earlier often does magically work. I can’t explain it either but it is magic.

        Going to bed at 7pm means my daughter is up around 7am. Going to bed at 9pm? She is usually up at 6am (or before!)

      • kim @ vegan mama September 9, 2012, 12:04 pm

        Not necessarily! I know it sounds counter-intuitive, but sleep begets sleep. Obviously, if you put him to bed at like 5:30, he’s going to be ready to start his day pretty early. But you could experiment with gradually putting him down earlier (by 20-30 minutes), and see how that affects his wake-up time. He may surprise you! Whatever you try, give it at least 4-5 days before giving up on it. From what I’ve heard, the 3rd day of trying a new sleep method is often the hardest, but it gets better after that.

        Good luck!

        • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 12:24 pm

          INTERESTING. Will try it.

          • laine September 9, 2012, 12:49 pm

            My sister puts her kids to bed at like 7pm, and they sleep all night. She says they sleep longer when they go to bed earlier. At 4, her oldest still goes to bed then.

          • Brittany (healthy slice of life) September 9, 2012, 1:13 pm

            Agreed again! H goes to bed at 7 and sleeps until 7:30, but if she goes down later, she wakes up earlier. Makes no sense, but it’s true.

          • Gina (fitnessista) September 9, 2012, 1:58 pm

            read “healthy sleep habits” – it will change your life! going to bed earlier helps them sleep better at night. a nap schedule would probably help too! liv has been on a routine since we brought her home from the hospital (eat, play, sleep) and we used a lot of the tips in “the baby whisperer”
            sleep was really awful for the first few months, but by following the tips in those books (and putting her to bed between 6:30-7) she slept through the night around 3 months

        • Brittnie (A Joy Renewed) September 9, 2012, 1:53 pm

          I just finished reading the HSHHC book and we are working on a much earlier bedtime for CLara. We had no clue what we were doing at first and were keeping her up LATE in hopes that she would sleep later. Basically shooting ourselves in the foot. We are on day 6 of sleep training from the HSHHC book and I am already seeing HUGE improvements mostly being 1- i can lay her down awake and she will fall asleep on her own and 2- she is learning to self soothe. The more rested babies are the better they will sleep. We are now working down to an earlier bedtime. Lots of learning going on here!! We are doing the extreme extinction method of CIO which I know a lot of people are not comfortable with but for a post colicky baby (like Clara is) that is the most effective method. GOod luck! These first few months are SO hard!

      • Sarah September 9, 2012, 5:21 pm

        Weirdly enough, earlier bedtime works! At least it did for my son, Sam. We started putting him to to bed between 545 and 6 pm and he goes 10-12 hours before waking up, about 4 nights out of 7. He was SUPER fussy- acid reflux, premature, just kind of cranky for the first two months of his life, so we’re not talking about your typical kid. We had had bedtime between 7 and 9, but moved it up to 6 around 3.5 months and it worked like a charm. We do a bath every night and use soap every other night. Then he gets a baby massage (I put lotion on him, that’s all) a few lullabies, a prayer, and a couple of books and it’s lights out, noise machine on.

  • Anna September 9, 2012, 11:52 am

    That`s a great infographic! I also didn`t know that you die from sleep deprivation faster than not eating. Actually I didn`t even know you could stay up for 10 days! That`s crazy.
    I wonder what it`s like to dream in black and white, also I`d love to know what it feels like to fly in dreams.

  • Cassie September 9, 2012, 11:54 am

    That schedule doesn’t sound too off the mark for a baby his age.

    One thing we did with my daughter was that night time (any time between 8pm and 6pm) was for sleeping or actively being put to sleep. When she would wake up in the middle of the night we would keep most of the lights off, feed her, and rock her to sleep (even though rocking her to sleep often lasted for an hour). I think that really helped cue her when to sleep.

    Another thing that helps (and you’re probably already doing this) is having a very set routine. At 8pm she would get a bath, then we would read a book to her (we went through all seven Harry Potter books when she was an infant), swaddle, feed, and rock her to sleep.

    Also, it helps to remember that “sleeping through the night” at that age is anything over 6 hours. I forget where I read that but 6 continuous hours is easier (and more realistic) to strive for than 8-12.

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 12:25 pm

      six hours would be amazing!

      • Brittnie (A Joy Renewed) September 9, 2012, 1:58 pm

        I agree – another thing I learned from the Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child book is that a set routine for bedtime and naps is essential. We were not doing this at all. It doesn’t have to be extravagant but is just needs to be consistent. So for example HSHHC says for naps either soothe him for a time and then lay him down awake OR soothe him into a deep sleep and then lay him down. Every time. No flip-flopping because this just confuses the baby. Consistency helps set the stage of queuing the baby that its time to hit the sack!

      • Allison k September 9, 2012, 2:00 pm

        My son is about 5 weeks older than yours. Ariund 13 weeks he started sleeping longer chunks on his own…last week he slept for 8.5 hours! And then…hello 4 month sleep regression, back to three hour chunks. I still feed him on demand. I think at this point Henry is too young to CIO, and could be hungry! I agree about cutting out caffeine. After you go through the withdrawals don’t you think it will be worth it for you both to get better sleep?
        Also, check out these two websites: and
        Best two sleep websites I’ve found. Not only down to earth advice, but also great support in the comments!

  • Jennifer September 9, 2012, 11:54 am

    Our guy is 3 months, 1 week and is sleeping relatively well. His first shift of sleep is usually 7 hours, then another 2 hours, then hourly.
    What has helped us is:
    1. Moving him out of our room to his crib.
    2. Making sure his last nap ends at least 2-3 hours before bedtime. Bedtime is currently 7:00, so we make sure he is awake and playing by 5:00 at the latest.
    3. Feeding him as much as he wants/we can before bedtime.
    4. Making sure he gets outside during the 2-3 hours before bedtime. My mother told me that being outdoors is a surefire way to exhaust babies. My husband or I will usually water the garden with him in the Baby Bjorn during this time.
    Hope this helps!

    • Tracy September 9, 2012, 1:28 pm

      I think Ashley at Never Homemaker said it best when she said it makes her laugh when first time moms of young babies think they have their child’s sleep all figured out. I have a 5 month old, and I swear I have done everything everyone else has (my 3 best friends had babies around the time I did) and….Luke is still the worst sleeper of the bunch. Wakes up 2x on a good night, and endlessly on a bad one. We have a consistent bed time and routine, and we nurse or don’t nurse or just comfort and use white noise, and I quit caffeine and then starting drinking it again and read every book on the market. We started rice cereal, we introduced 1 formula bottle at night, then switched back. But you know what? Sometimes he sleeps well, and other times not. No relationship to anything.
      So I know it’s not helpful advice, but a nurse at my pediatrician’s office said it best to me: He’s a baby. Some babies are good sleepers. Others aren’t. Unfortunately Luke falls in the “not” category for sleeping through the night. Comfort him when he wakes up (for now) and try not to get frustrated. And remember that he is happy, expressive and inquisitive and not fussy during the day. Try your best (within reason) and remember that there are other sleepless moms out there, rocking their baby to sleep at 3am, baffled at why their kid isn’t sleeping too. Good luck!

      • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 1:35 pm

        The #zombiemoms hash tag on twitter really helps me!! Haha

      • Ashley M. [at] (never home)maker November 13, 2012, 8:55 pm

        Baahaha I was just Googling some stuff from my blog and it turned up this comment. Thanks for the love, Tracy. Still a first time mom. STILL PERPLEXED by my near one-year-old’s continuing sleep struggles!

    • Sarah September 9, 2012, 2:51 pm

      Love this. Totally agree. Helped us. Routine is key but I followed Gina ford (contraversially) and she covers these points. Bath, story, bottle, swaddle, dark room

  • Lauren @ SassyMolassy September 9, 2012, 11:54 am

    I have no parent experience, but just reading Bringing up Bebe. It was really interesting to read how the French only feed their children (babies included after the first few weeks) at 8am, 12pm, 4pm and 8pm. They don’t snack in between.

    • jessika September 10, 2012, 1:43 am

      I really loved bring up bebe! More for the discipline part than anything else. Anyway, I got lucky and had a “good sleeper”. By 2 months ge was sleeping 7-8 hours, and then he started sleeping 11 hours straight mot too long after that. BUT, when he had a growth spurt,he’d be up all night. So, I think part of it is that you have a hungry boy, part of it may also be that he’s use to being feed. Maybe try for a week and not feed him at night?

  • La September 9, 2012, 11:59 am


    I feel you. I was feeding my daughter three times a night (between 12am-6am) until she was five months old. She’s now six months old and things have improved significantly after we did some sleep training. Since she was only 5 lbs. at birth, my pediatrician told us that we had to wait until she was 12 pounds to do any form of CIO (which we all hate, but unfortunately, actually works for babies who think they need to get up for those feedings). After realizing that she was only taking 1-2 oz. a feeding, I knew that she didn’t need to eat. So a few things I would suggest:

    1. Put Henry to bed earlier. It seems counter intuitive but studies show that babies who nap well during the day and go to bed earlier actually sleep better.

    2. Take out one of those feedings. If he wakes up crying, leave him in his crib, don’t talk to him, and rub his head, belly, or whatever soothes him. If he’ll take a paci, then give that to him. He’ll continue to cry b/c he knows something is different and that you’re deviating from the routine; however, after 5 days of this he should sleep through that feeding and instead wake up for a later one where he’ll eat better.

    3. I would also suggest doing a “dream feed” before y’all go to bed for the night.

    Like I said, these are only suggestions, but I cannot explain what a zombie I was after five months of three-times a night feedings. I knew something needed to change especially since I was going back to work full time when she was 5.5 months old. So this has been our schedule for the past three weeks and it’s been working really well (after a solid week of sleep training, and yes, there were nights, we just had to let her cry).

    6:30-7:30 Bedtime–Rock with a bottle and put her down awake. She squawks (she’s in the “talking” phase now) for about 10 minutes and then goes to sleep.

    10:30-11:00 Change diaper and dream feed

    3:00-4:00 She wakes up, fusses for 2-3 minutes, and then falls back to sleep

    5:00-7:00 Wakes up with a hungry cry; feed her, changer her diaper, and if it’s earlier put her back to bed and if it’s 7 we get up for the day.

    Not sure if this will work for your family, but hope it helps! I know how difficult sleep deprivation can be and you are doing a great job managing everything 🙂
    Obviously this is much better than our previous arrangement.

  • Katheryn September 9, 2012, 12:12 pm

    Cutting caffeine out might help. I know that doesn’t sound great but it probably has something to do with not sleeping well. I would also suggest looking more at his current schedule. How long does he generally drink each time during the night? If its just a few minutes, then he doesnt really need it. Not at this age. If you’re not swaddling, I would go back to that and only offer milk once or twice a night. He’s in a habit of waking now, so expect any changes to take a few days before you see a difference. Good luck!

    • Heather September 9, 2012, 8:59 pm

      Cutting out caffeine did nothing for me! 🙁

  • Jessica September 9, 2012, 12:13 pm

    Hang in there, you’re doing great! All babies are different, and you’re doing what is exactly right for Henry, you know best, you’re the mama!

    My first slept really well, my second, well, I ended up sleeping in her bed for 2 years because it was just easier than getting up 5 times a night. Now she sleeps like a champ.

    But maybe get a sleeping mask. That really helped me sleep deeper when I did get a few hours. And dim the lights before bedtime, and get f.lux for your computer if you have to use it at night or within a few hours of bedtime. Maybe try savasana for 10 minutes before falling asleep to let your nerves and muscles totally relax. And a shot of warm milk and honey 🙂

  • Crystal September 9, 2012, 12:15 pm

    No Cry Sleep Solution?

  • Kelly September 9, 2012, 12:16 pm

    I swear by “The Baby Whisperer” method. My son is now 11 and we have never had sleeping issues with him. No sneaking out of bed or asking for another drink of water. Just a kiss goodnight and he goes to sleep. Even as as infant, once we got the method down we just
    put him in his crib at 7:30 and he would go to sleep. Even if he woke up for feedings, he would go right back to sleep because he learned to self sooth. I think fitnessista uses this method as well. Good luck!

  • loli September 9, 2012, 12:21 pm

    what helped me the most on those day was the advise to sleep when they sleep even if that means napping during the day. Flow with it accept the pattern instead of fighting it. Going through those nights and trying to maintain writing blogging exercising and working as if nothing changed does not make sense and will take a toll on everyone.

  • Melanie September 9, 2012, 12:22 pm

    Hi! I second “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child”- my friend swore by it and I’ve found a lot of info in there very helpful- especially the earlier bed time. The book says that the sleep they get before midnight is the most restorative and even though I was scared about it meaning an earlier wake up, eventually it just helps them sleep for longer periods. My daughter is 17 months but we started applying some of these strategies around 3- 4 months. Another book that might help give you a different perspective is “Bringing up bebe”. I recently read it and was wishing I read it when my daughter was younger!

    It seriously gets better, I promise!

  • Katie @ Talk Less, Say More September 9, 2012, 12:23 pm

    That sleep infographic is super interesting! Especially the part about how 10 days of no sleep can kill you. Before my move, I was so stressed I wasn’t sleeping more than 3-4 hours a night. It was awful and I felt terrible. Probably a good thing I didn’t know that statistic or I would have been even more stressed to sleep and then not slept… 😉

  • Kristen September 9, 2012, 12:27 pm

    I feel for you, Caitlin. My two kids (now aged 9 and 7) didn’t come close to sleeping through the night until they were at least a year old. I know that is not what you want to hear, but I think it is important to be honest. Not all babies sleep as soundly as some mommies claim. Also important to note that technically speaking, pediatricians consider “sleeping through the night” to be a stretch of six hours or something, so if you put Henry down at 8pm then he is “technically” sleeping through the night if he sleeps until 2am. NO baby is going to sleep straight for 10 hours. Soooo, I would actually recommend you keep him up LATER, not put him to bed earlier as another reader suggested. Put him to bed when you are going to bed, so you are on the same schedule and then you can hope for a stretch of 4 or 5 or 6 hours of sleep before he wakes up. Babies honestly do not need to be on this strict 8pm bedtime. KIDS DO, YES, but not babies. As you said above, the earlier you put him to bed, the sooner he is going to wake you up, and that is not working for you.

    I also agree that you should try to soothe him without feeding him. He is training YOU right now, rather then you training HIM, and you probably want to nip that in the bud. He’s not a newborn anymore, so he doesn’t need to eat as frequently. It takes time though, so you have to be willing to push through a difficult two weeks as you stretch out his feedings in the night. Pacifier, back patting, shushing, and rocking! Definitely read that Healthy Sleep Habits book – it is GREAT!

    Good Luck!! Hang in there!!

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 12:30 pm

      I guess the key is just to try lots of different things and see what works best for your baby since everyone is so different.

    • Erin September 9, 2012, 12:47 pm

      Sorry, but my baby does sleep for 10 straight hours, at 10 weeks old!

      • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 1:33 pm

        Tell your baby to come talk to Henry about this lol

        • Erin September 9, 2012, 2:56 pm

          I really am lucky! And she is breast fed. So many people told me breastfed babies don’t sleep through the night. Not true!

    • Kristin September 9, 2012, 9:13 pm

      Once I accepted that most breastfed babies don’t sleep thru the night til closer to 6 months I felt a lot better. Isabelle was sleeping 9pm- 4 am until about 3 and a half months she hit a huge regression that lasted a month. I think either she grew out of it or she realized I wasn’t going to feed her everytime she woke up and she started sleeping better. Now she gets fed one time a night and up for the binky once also. She is 6 months. I’m so sick of ppl acting like there’s something wrong with babies who get up at night…. Mostly older moms who claim their babies were great, I think they forget just how much babies do get up at night! Also I find that closer to 5-6 months babies are just more ready to self soothe and go to sleep on their own. Younger than that they are just not ready. Anyways good luck and I’m hoping all our babies give us a break soon.

  • Allison September 9, 2012, 12:27 pm

    My little boy is a few weeks younger than Henry, but we’re working on the same thing right now. I feed him at 7, then semi-wake him at 10 before I go to bed to feed him. He was waking up again at 1 or 2, then 3 or 4 and then in the morning. We cut out one wake up – just let him cry one night at 2… he only cried for about 2 minutes and went back to sleep! Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child is super helpful 🙂 Our next step is to slowly decrease how much he’s eating at the 3ish feeding and then try to cut that one out. I’m planning to kind of do the same thing, but I’m really interested in what more experienced moms have to say… I’ve only got 8 weeks under my belt 🙂

    AND, I love reading your blog. So, thanks for writing and being open with your life.

  • Sam @ Better With Sprinkles September 9, 2012, 12:28 pm

    Ummm, I usually don’t dream. That’s not particularly reassuring.

  • Erin September 9, 2012, 12:44 pm

    I think some babies are just like this. I really lucked out, my 10 week old sleeps 9-10 hours in a row at night. I get up to pump once. We put her to bed, swaddled, with white noise at 7:15/7:30. We have a bath (not every night), swaddle, nurse routine, and I think she realizes that means bedtime.
    I will say she doesn’t nap for long during the day, more like cat naps.
    And I hate to suggest it, but I don’t have caffeine, and I think it really helps.

  • Mayra B September 9, 2012, 12:45 pm

    I let my girls wake up in the middle of the night for the first 2 weeks after the hospital. They were breastfed too; but after the two weeks, I began putting them in bed at 11 and feeding again at 4. I found out that a big block of sleep was good for everyone. Then, little by little make the sleeping blocks longer. It has worked wonders because they sleep from 8:30 to 6:00 still, and they are 4 and 2 now. Babies wake up out of habit sometimes; but you will know if baby is really hungry, so don’t be afraid to let him cry a bit to see what the cry really means. Your blog is very inspiring. Good luck with everything!

  • Tricia September 9, 2012, 12:48 pm

    I am not a mommy so I don’t really have any advice. But I would like to say that you are not a bad mom for complaining about a lack of sleep! I have a friend on fb that I swear hates her baby. I never hear her say 1 positive thing about her child. And I am not the only one to comment as such. It’s clear you love Henry, otherwise it wouldn’t be so hard for you to away overnight!

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 1:33 pm

      Thanks 🙂

  • K September 9, 2012, 12:48 pm

    Caitlin, the only thing I can say is that, until things get better, it is most worthwhile to work on accepting things as they are. Henry is still SO young! he hasn’t even been alive two dozen weeks! I would seriously discourage you from letting him cry it out at such a young age, but I also think that you are his Mom, know him best and need to do whatever is necessary for all of you. Our guy is almost five months and wakes up a minimum of 4x per night, and I don’t know exactly what shape our sleep training down the road will take (more likely something of the gentler/more time-intensive), but people have told us we need to do EVERYTHING from swaddling to dreamfeeding to earlier/later bedtimes and honestly, some babies just need more time to develop their sleep stuff. We have given many of these strategies an honest effot and our guy just seems to need more time ad nurturing at night. Use Henry as your guide, do whatever YOU feel is right and if Henry does take longer to sleep better, just do your best to smell his sweet little hair and remember that you will (believe it or not) miss the nights you spent together. Good luck, with things. Like the other moms of frequent nightwakers, I agree that sleep deprivation is positively agonizing, but follow your mama heart and remember that the expectations we put on our kids’ sleep emerge from a very parent-centric philosophy of parenting. We need to work to support our families and be able to function (I get it, I work part time from home!), but remember that babies who hardly wake at night are the exception!!! Sorry for the huge post!

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 1:33 pm

      No I appreciate it. For what it’s worth I would never let Henry cry it out. I let him make noises for a bit to make sure he really wants to get up but that spoiled bebe never cries. Lol. I do know he’s still SO young but like you said there’s a pout where it starts to really negatively impact the adults and that’s where we are now. Need to find a balance!

      • K September 9, 2012, 10:44 pm

        And for the record, I wouldn’t judge anyone for using any particular variant of CIO. We are starting to use the principles from “The No-Cry Sleep Solution,” but what makes for a strong community of Moms is that we make the choices that are right for us and keep cheering on one another!

  • Presley @ Run Pretty September 9, 2012, 12:49 pm

    Maddux is on almost the exact same schedule. Asleep around 9-10, awake again around 12-1, awake again around 4-5, awake again around 7-8. Sometimes the actual time he is awake around those times is longer. Those nights are the toughest. For example, he might wake up around 4 and not go back down until 6. I go to work at 6:30. SUCKS. haha And everyone I talk to is like: “My baby was sleeping 7-8 hours straight by now.” Well, thanks guys.

    If you find some sort of miracle cure, let me know!!

  • Mandy B September 9, 2012, 12:49 pm

    I’m wondering about the caffeine as well. I have a really high caffeine sensitivity, so when I have a cup of coffee in the morning I’m up half the night (Three cheers for decaf!). When you think about it, it is a stimulant and would pass through breast milk like any other drug. Perhaps Henry is sensitive to caffeine as well!

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 1:31 pm

      Ugh I should just try it but I really do shudder thinking of having to go a few days without it while I figure it out.

      • Kris September 9, 2012, 3:59 pm

        If you taper off your caffeine, you won’t notice it as much. Just decrease your coffee by an 1/8 or 1/4 cup until you’re off of it. You can switch to a mix of reg and decaf, and once you’re off, have a cup of something else hot.

  • jessica September 9, 2012, 12:56 pm

    Have you thought of breastfeeding the night feedings instead of pumped milk? I know that evening/night breastmilk is different from morning milk–it has “sleep” components in it that help babies sleep. Check out the following article for more info:

    I don’t know if this would help, but it’s worth a try! 🙂 I have two under 3, so I totally understand the chronic lack of sleep thing!! 😉

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 1:30 pm

      That is really cool! I guess he is getting the night milk even when I pump because I wake up at 2 and give him the bottle I pumped at 11 and then pump another which the husband gives him at the next wake up. Probably not as good as bfing it but bfing is beyond difficult at night (I owe a post on this) so it is what it is.

      • Allison k September 9, 2012, 2:11 pm

        So, part of your exhaustion problem is that you pump after you feed him each time? Since you have to be awake longer. If Henry d

        • Allison k September 9, 2012, 2:15 pm

          Damn iPhone. The rest of my comment is…if Henry doesn’t wake up, do you not pump in the middle of the night? Also…I would love to read about what struggles you’ve encountered trying to nurse at night. I had a hard time till We put a great chair in our nursery. He went into his crib at 6 weeks. I can’t sleep with him in our room, I’m too light of a sleeper. My husband is too deep/violent of a sleeper for bed sharing, so nursery was the only option!

          • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 2:42 pm

            We have not had that problem yet haha but I would probably
            Be woken up by my boobs after seven hours regardless

  • Kate September 9, 2012, 12:57 pm

    I haven’t read through all the comments, so I apologize if this is a repeat, but Healthy Sleep Habits, Healthy Baby by Marc Weissbluth saved my sleep deprived life! Wish I had owned it with my first. The best advice in it (for me) was to put my daughter to sleep earlier. I already had established a good nap routine with her, but she was really cranky in the evenings. Once I started putting her down for the night between 6-6:30pm, everything improved. I was initially skeptical… feels wrong to put your baby down to bed at 6:15pm, but it actually stopped the night wakings. HIGHLY recommend this book! Good luck!

  • Alisa September 9, 2012, 1:01 pm

    Is he old enough for cluster feeding yet? Our doc recommended it around 3 months. You cluster the last two feelings of the night close together so baby feels more full and can sleep longer. It might help Henry sleep through the 11 pm feeding. And as he gets older, he can go longer between feelings. Hang in there!

  • Lauren September 9, 2012, 1:08 pm

    I didn’t read all the comments but did anyone suggest or have you researched a dream feed? If you know he wakes at 11 to feed just stay up until 10:30 and stick a boob or bottle in his mouth. That should get him through. Whether he needs food for comfort or hunger it shouldn’t be denied until the year mark.

    But talk to your pediatrician, some can be apathetic, but most have some good tips to get extra sleep. A happier mommy= happier family.

  • Priyanka September 9, 2012, 1:09 pm

    This is exactly what my son has been doing for the past few days. I think it just a pattern for babies around this age to sleep for 6-7 hours during the first stretch, followed by 2 and then 1 hour sleep intervals. Typically, my son wants to sleep by 7:30pm and then wake up between 12-1 for his first bottle. But after that I rarely get any continuous sleep. I have tried everything from rocking, shushing, to giving him a pacifier. A week back he would play from 3-5 am and he wanted attention or crying would definitely follow. The only thing that puts him back to sleep when he wakes up during those wee hours is swaddling and carrying vertically with his face resting on my shoulders and then bouncing.

    I am so sleep deprived that I have stopped complaining.

    Hopefully this is just a phase and they will grow out of it.

  • Sarah September 9, 2012, 1:10 pm

    I hear you!!! The two things that have worked best for us with my daughter is swaddling and white noise. When I get ready to put her down for the night and she is seeming sleepy, I never just lay her down without swaddling her first. That keeps her from waking up so often. I think the white noise helps too because she doesn’t get startled awake by random noises. We have been greatly helped by the DVD “The Happiest Baby on the Block” by Dr. Harvey Karp. He shows how to do a great swaddle. 🙂

  • Lisa September 9, 2012, 1:12 pm

    Oh I hear you! My daughter is 9 months old and sleep has been a huge issue for us. She once, around 3 months old slept 7-8 hours in a row, then the 4 month sleep regression hit and at one point she was up 8-10 times a night! Talk about exhausting! We just had her back to waking only once or twice and then teething struck bad, then she got sick with Roseola and now we are starting to get back to normal (once or twice wakings). We’ve tried sleep training of all sorts- no cry sleep solution, RIE, etc. It did help a bit, but to be honest as soon as she got sick / got a new tooth, etc. we were always back at square one. Now we are at the point that we have done so much sleep training / routine setting / etc. and have learned that for some kids nothing works like magic. I’ll telling you all this to let you know that you are not alone- some kids are just bad sleepers. Hopefully Henry is better than our little one, but if not- it WILL pass! At this point though I think we are finally settling down and accepting that sleep might be challenging now but also realizing that this won’t last for long- her 9 months have flown by! Good luck!

  • Jennifer V. September 9, 2012, 1:13 pm

    Can you try feeding him more during the day? If he is getting up at night because he really is hungry, then maybe he needs to eat more during the day? I know you BF, but if he eats xx ounces in a 24 hour period, you need to try and get that much food in him in a 16-18 hour period. Make sense?

  • Erin September 9, 2012, 1:15 pm

    I hate to say it, but Henry’s sleep sounds pretty good for a 3 month old. If he’s going down around 9, you should be doing that too. And switching off on feeding him sounds good too. He’s obviously too young for sleep training, but you should aim to put him to bed “drowsy but awake” — experiment with seeing whether he can put himself to sleep. My daughter started doing it around that age without crying and would then sleep six hours, two hours, two hours. Hang in there — there’s another big sleep regression at 4 months but once you get over that hump, things start getting (gradually) easier.

    • Samantha @ Mama Notes September 9, 2012, 1:30 pm

      Yeah, I agree. Also consider putting him to bed a little earlier. I tried to get my kids going to bed at a regular time ASAP, even if it meant they woke up more. I wanted to get into the habit of a 7pm bed time ASAP. 🙂 Try putting him down when he almost doesn’t seem tired… he might play for 10 minutes or so by himself and then gradualliy fall asleep on his own.

  • Jenn September 9, 2012, 1:22 pm

    Cut the caffeine. And The EASY schedule is amazing. it saved us, but honestly our 7 month old didn’t sleep much until 1- she started solids 2- she could roll to sleep on stomach. I feel your pain.

  • Jenn September 9, 2012, 1:23 pm

    Oh! And a pacifier.

  • Samantha @ Mama Notes September 9, 2012, 1:29 pm

    I have 2 little boys.

    I breastfed them, like you are doing, and the only way I got any sleeping was to co sleep. It made my life SO much easier and I don’t know why I didn’t try it sooner with #1. He was in bed with me and he slept better, but when he did wake up, it wasn’t like I had to get out of bed, go nurse him, rock him back to sleep, walk back to my room, etc. I just sat up in bed.. and then scooted back down. Or, when he got a little older we nursed while we were laying down/on our side. I would try this if you can, it will change your sleeping life!

    Second, in their room they have a fan (or a white noise machine) and they’ve had that since day one. That helps with a constant noise and keeping out other house noises.

    Also, I will just say, that this is just the way (most) kids are. My kids are almost 2 and 3.5 and oen of them STILL wakes up once a night on occasion. My first child didn’t sleep through the night till.. like age 3 or something. He was up all the time, and I finally I just got used to it and he slept with us and I didn’t fight it.

  • Rachel Starr September 9, 2012, 1:43 pm

    A couple things: I vaguely remember someone saying that it takes 10 days for caffine to leave your system. I was also told that sleeping through the night is a developmental milestone. Each kid reaches in their own time. And sleeping “through the night” only means a minimum of 6 hours straight. But at this point you could definitely do some sleep training & skip a feeding. Just try changing his diaper & laying him back down. Good luck!

  • Danielle September 9, 2012, 1:47 pm

    Thank you for being honest with your struggles. It’s so helpful and wonderful to receive an abundance of advice from people 🙂 you’re an amazing mommy!

  • christy September 9, 2012, 1:49 pm

    This is not what you’re going to want to hear, but I think you might need to adjust your expectations a bit. His night waking sounds kinda normal to me. My baby was still up every 2 hours at 6 months. And I. Tried. Everything. (Short of letting him cry it out). He’s 2 now and still wakes up at least once a night.

    I’m NOT saying this to make you feel bad or discourage you, I’m just letting you know that you’re not doing anything wrong. Keep trying different things (lots of good suggestions here), but try not to get too discouraged if they don’t work. Every baby is an individual, and I’ve learned over the past 2 years that sometimes it’s easier for you to adapt to them than the other way around.

    One of the worst questions people ask new parents is “is he sleeping through the night yet?” It makes it seem like he should be, and that’s not always the case. Don’t let that kind of comment get to you.

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 2:45 pm

      I understand what you mean and appreciate this a lot.

  • Lara September 9, 2012, 1:51 pm

    i’m not sure if others had the same ideas (sorry to repeat but no time to read all comments). try an earlier bedtime (the most important sleep for a baby is before midnight). ours was going to bed at 6:30 (!) some nights.

    also, be aware of the dreaded (but true) 4 month sleep regression (i am sure that others have mentioned it). there is nothing you can do but wait it out. ask moxie ( was a HUGE help for me.

    lots of different opinions on sleep “training” but i feel that anytime before 7/8 months old is too early. and there ARE ways to do it that are not “mean”. just be consistent when you reach that point.

    and caffeine never affected my kids (both pretty good sleepers). i so needed my coffee.

    rock on you’re doing great!

  • Gina (fitnessista) September 9, 2012, 1:59 pm

    moving him out of your room might help, too. i loved having liv next to me in the bassinet, but she got too big for it, and every little sound would wake me up. when we moved her out into her crib in the nursery, she slept so much better. i just put the video monitor on the night stand next to me

  • ash September 9, 2012, 2:00 pm

    Hang in there mama, you are doing a great job!

  • Carol September 9, 2012, 2:08 pm

    I am the mom of an almost four year old and
    Take melatonin. It makes the quality of my
    Sleep so much better, even if I’ve had a night
    Of broken sleep. I wish I’d known about
    It when he was a baby!

  • Erica September 9, 2012, 2:10 pm

    I haven’t read through the other comments so please forgive me if these are repeat suggestions. I have a 5 month old boy who has been sleeping all night since he was 2 months old, and so I can just tell you what worked for us. I’m definitely not an expert and each baby’s needs are different, but now that Henry is nearly 3 months old (how cool is that?!) he might benefit from some changes 🙂 I’ve read Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child and The Baby Whisperer, both invaluable resources.

    The first suggestion I’d make is an earlier bedtime. We started doing a 7 pm bedtime. This means that around 6:30, I nurse him for the last time of day, followed up by a bath (every day. he gets soap every other bath, and the ones in between are splash baths). After this, he gets a few minutes of naked time on the floor on a soft blanket with the lights dimmed, and then in bed by 7:15 at the latest. We also try really hard to be quiet and let him wind down (just like adults need to do at the end of the day before bed) before we put him in the crib. We put him in the crib when he’s awake, and leave the room. Sometimes he fusses for a few minutes but usually he’s right to sleep. I then do a dream feed at 10:00 and he is right back to bed. He then sleeps until we wake him up at 7 AM. At 3 months our son was taking roughly three 90 minute naps a day, and sleeping from 7pm-7am with the 10pm dream feed. I can give you some tips on how his naps go, too, if you are at all interested.

    The second suggestion is moving him to his own room (which is soo hard, I know!). Our little guy sleeps so well in his own room compared to when we share a room with him (like we’ve had to do on trips). I think one of the reasons is that babies have sleep cycles, so Henry may be making a noise (even a cry!) when he’s in one of the lighter stages of sleep, and then when you guys check on him it may actually wake him up. Sleep cycles are 45-50 minutes, so if he’s waking up once an hour, you may be misinterpreting that as an actual wake up. Sometimes our son will whimper or cry for a minute or two (we’ll hear it on the monitor) then he’ll be silent again. Henry may also be a light sleeper (our son is) so if he hears you guys stirring or breathing while he is sleeping, it could wake him up.

    Another thing is that babies are social – so when they see you in the middle of the night they are like, “Oh hey, it’s my person! I like this person, let’s play!” and so make sure that you are being quiet and try not to interact with him much in the middle of the night.

    I hesitate to say “sleep training” or “cry it out” but it might be beneficial to see what happens if you let him fuss for a few moments to see if he falls back asleep without intervention, especially in the middle of the night.

    • Erica September 9, 2012, 2:16 pm

      Honestly I don’t think you need to cut out caffeine. Unless Henry acts irritable or wired when you nurse him after you drink coffee.

      • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 2:41 pm

        He does not! I have never thought it impacted him.

      • christy September 9, 2012, 7:48 pm

        Totally agree with this, I overdid the caffeine ONCE in the 14 months that I breastfed (and I really like my coffee), and wow…if you overdo it, you’ll know. He will LET YOU KNOW.

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 2:44 pm

      Thanks for this comment!

      • Erica September 9, 2012, 3:03 pm

        You’re welcome! Eventually these things work themselves out but uninterrupted sleep is so important for the entire family, even bebes. Seems like Henry has an easy temperament so I’m sure whatever decision or change you make he will adapt easily 🙂

  • Andrea September 9, 2012, 2:12 pm

    I know it’s not for everyone but once we moved our daughter to her own bed in her own room we all started sleeping better. That being said she loves sleep and still naps up to 4 times a day for 1 1/2-2 hours and sleeps at night from 8pm to 5am and then back down until 8am. Another thing I did is I stopped breastfeeding on demand. Our pediatrician mentioned that by now at 2 1/2 months old she can go 3 hours without eating during the day and should go longer at night. So we’ve tried stretching her and lo and behold she certainly can go that long. So we use the pacifier to help soothe those attempts to snack. That being said, it’s everyone’s choice what they decide to do though.

  • Lauren @ The Homeostatic Mindset September 9, 2012, 2:13 pm

    It’s just me I’m taking care of (in addition to being in University!) and I struggle to write my blogs! I don’t know how you have kept up! It must be so rough, but your blog is still just as strong as ever! Hopefully something changes soon so that you can start feeling stronger both physically, as well as emotionally 🙂

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 2:43 pm

      Thanks 🙂 🙂

    • Lindsay @ prettylittleparadise September 9, 2012, 3:53 pm

      I totally agree with you!! I definitely appreciate all of your hard work with the blog since right after you had Henry! I look forward to reading all of your posts every day, so thank 🙂

  • Michelle@Peachy Palate September 9, 2012, 2:16 pm

    How old is he now? I wouldn’t give him the bottle when he wakes up..hold out a bit longer, an hour or so for the last bottle and after a few nights of waking and not getting fed he more than likely won’t wake up, he’s waking for a feed out of habit. 🙂

  • Cindy September 9, 2012, 2:18 pm

    I have been all over the place with sleep issues, but finally at 8 months, we gave into sleep training and now my baby sleeps better and longer! I used the book the sleepeasy solution, I think they recommend waiting on sleep training until 4 months. In the meantime I echo the others – maybe moving up bedtime, I think that was around the age my son started going to sleep by 7. Also, make sure he’s sleeping well during the day, that usually helps too. And just know that it will get better. I survived 8 months of crazy sleep habits and never thought my baby would sleep through the night – but now he does! So you aren’t alone and it will pass! Hang in there!

  • Kate September 9, 2012, 2:38 pm

    When my son was a baby, “scheduling” and “sleep training” and not going in immediately if he cried always made me uncomfortable. (I’m not criticizing people who do any of this, just saying it wasn’t right for me.) So I just nursed on demand for a long time and went in whenever he cried. He didn’t sleep through the night (all night, I mean) till 9 months, either… That took a while!

    The reason I’m saying this is that it was tough (and to tell you the truth, for me the first year is kind of a blur!), but the frequent wake-ups do come to an end! One day this will be in the past. And there are growth spurts and “wonder weeks” ( to consider, too. Hope you get better sleep soon!

    Also, totally off topic, have you ever done a post on the best workout clothes to keep cool? I sweat a lot! 🙂

  • Alex @ Healthy Life Happy Wife September 9, 2012, 2:53 pm

    I love this infographic! Super interesting. My favorite fact is the one about sleep deprivation vs. food deprivation…never would have guessed!

  • Katie @ Peace Love & Oats September 9, 2012, 3:09 pm

    Haha the teenagers wetting the bed thing threw me off at the end there!

  • daphna September 9, 2012, 3:16 pm

    I think that most babies don’t need to eat during the night after 3 months (around 12 lbs), so I would pump and give them a big bottle before bed and when my little ones woke up my husband or I would soothe them and give them a paci but not feed them. I found that they quickly adjusted to eating more during the day and woke up less at night. Also, putting them in their own room helped a lot. Before then I was night nursing in a sidelying position so I was pretty much sleeping while they nursed. My pediatrician was the one telling me they don’t need to eat during the night after the 1st 12 weeks, and considering how sleep-deprived I was with twins I was so glad I tried out her suggestions!

  • Jen September 9, 2012, 3:19 pm

    I skimmed through the comments but didn’t read carefully so these suggestions may have already been given.

    Definitely earlier bedtime – babies need 11-12 hours of nightsleep not counting when they are up for feedings. Try to put him to bed 12 hours from when his natural wake up time is. At his age he should be able to manage a 6 hr stretch for the first part of his night. But, if he goes down early, it would probably be something like 6pm-12am and then eating again around 3-4am.
    If he doesn’t self-soothe yet, you can gently teach him by putting him down awake or drowsy but awake.
    Time awake is a HUGE factor – at his age he should probably be taking 4 naps with about an hour and a half awake between them. Longer awake times than that = overtiredness which screws everything up.

    This chart helped me a lot – it explains typical awake time, number of naps, typical hours of nightsleep, etc for each age.

    Here are links to sleep training help at various ages:

    Here’s basic info for babies in general:

    And basic info for babies 0-4 months:

  • Carol September 9, 2012, 3:26 pm

    It’s so great that you and your husband can
    share night duties. My husband could sleep
    through a tornado, so by the time I woke
    him for his “turn” I was so awake that
    I couldn’t ever go back to sleep

  • Eileen September 9, 2012, 3:27 pm

    I’m no expert but I found dr. Sears’ website on baby sleep patterns, etc. very helpful. Also our baby (breastfed) really responded well to swaddling, which a friend strongly encouraged. It has been miraculous, he wakes once to feed in a 8-10 hr stretch. Best of luck!

  • Jess September 9, 2012, 3:39 pm

    Hello! I love reading your blog, especially because our sons are close in age-mine was born May 28th! My son sleeps 8-5ish. Some suggestions….definitely try eliminating the caffeine. Even if he isn’t irritable it could be making him wound up and unable to truly fall asleep. Also, give him a pacifier when he stirs at night instead of feeding him and he’ll catch on. Resist the urge to pick him up-rock, shush and massage him while he’s in the bassinet. (I know you don’t want to move him to the crib, but my baby started to sleep through the night once we moved him about three weeks ago). Also….I know you nurse more than bottles (I think) but make sure he eats about every 3 hours during the day so he is full and will be able to last the night. My son had major latch issues…I tried everything including the shield. I exclusively pump for him. He gets 6oz every three hours from 5am to 8pm. Sorry if some are repeat suggestions! Good luck =)

    • Jess September 9, 2012, 3:41 pm

      Oh! Also no napping 2 hours before at least! My son is awake from 5:30-6 until he starts to fall asleep 7:30/8 for bed.

    • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 3:44 pm

      I pump exclusively now too. He still eats every 3 hours though!! He’s a big boy these days.

      • Kelly September 9, 2012, 9:18 pm

        I’d be interested in hearing more about this! We had major breastfeeding issues and I ended up exclusively pumping for about a month – it just about killed me. We ended up supplementing with formula, and then eventually switching totally over to formula. Heartbreaking, but I just couldn’t keep up with the pumping (wasn’t a supply issue – like you, I had oversupply – but it was so exhausting, and rough on my body). Have you been exclusively pumping for long?

        • Caitlin September 9, 2012, 10:42 pm

          I started 90% pumping about 5 weeks ago. Not going to lie, in many ways, pumping is not my favorite thing. But neither was BFing because of oversupply and nipple issues. I’ll try to do a post about it this week!

  • Jayce September 9, 2012, 3:48 pm

    My little guy is 5 days younger than Henry. We cosleep and love it! No judgment please! I am only sharing because I honestly think it is amazing. Baby sleeps between me and a toddler bed rail we added. I wake up to the slightest movement, nurse if needed, and we both get back to sleep quickly. Feels like uninterrupted sleep. We do lay him down in the pack n play to start the night around 9, then he sleeps 3-5 hours and comes into bed with us. I love the cuddling and feel completely safe with our safety measures (no blankets or pillows near baby etc). We started this around 5 weeks, and since then my confidence as a mommy has skyrocketed! Different things are right for different families, but just follow your instincts! I do think Henry is too young for an actual schedule, and messing with breastfeeding by denying feedings etc this early could affect your nursing long-term. When I do have a rough day I just remind myself that this phase is so short, and one day I will look back and long for the cuddly baby and frequent nursing and bonding. We will deal with further issues if they arise, but for now I strongly believe the best place for my baby is right next to me. Here is a link to some interesting info/studies on cosleeping from Dr. Sears:

  • Kendra September 9, 2012, 4:03 pm

    I know co-sleeping is a huge hit with many families out there but it wasn’t really a good fit for us. In fact we never had our baby in our bed once and we had a successful sleeper and still formed a strong bond with him. Henry is still in the bassinet in your room, right? Even that didn’t last long for us. We moved our baby to his crib fairly quickly and I have to say all three of us slept much, much better. The first night was really hard on me but once I got over it I slept so very good and our baby did too! Since you are still nursing the bassinet or co-sleeping may be the most convenient option for you for quick feedings but for us, something magical happened when we moved to the crib.

    I hope you find a solution that bests suits your family. It is tough for sure!! We’ve all been tired but man, oh man, is there something completely unique to the type of tired you feel as a new mama. It’s in a league of its own!! Hang in there!

    • Kendra September 9, 2012, 4:07 pm

      P.S. – I also drank coffee in the mornings and didn’t have any issues. It’s down right cruel to tell new mom’s they can’t!!! Of course, if I thought it was effecting my baby’s sleep I would have stopped but it never seemed to bother him. Also, I noticed you are exclusively pumping now… I did the same thing! That comes with its own hurdles but it sure did work well for us. I still had a very strong bond with my baby despite no co-sleeping and not nursing for long.

  • Jill September 9, 2012, 4:06 pm

    Unfortunately he sounds like a very typical infant! Very hard on mom and dad 🙁 We sleep trained my baby at around 5 months and it was absolutely terrible, but I was at my breaking point. She sleeps amazingly well most days now, but it took a year for her to sleep all the way through the night. Just when you think you can’t take anymore, he’ll start sleeping more, I bet.

  • Cailin September 9, 2012, 4:12 pm

    Welcome to motherhood! I haven’t slept well in four years, minus a few nights here and there.
    Just be grateful you work from home and have a somewhat flexible schedule. Many sleep deprived moms out there have to wake up at 5 am and start their day that includes going to work, pumping in a bathroom, and coming home for shift two of being mommy after a long work day.. They can’t nurse from the couch and take little rests between work. I know it’s hard either way, and frankly, being sleep deprived is not fun for mental or physical health- but if I were you I would count your blessings and think of the many who have it much harder !

    • Jessica September 10, 2012, 10:05 am

      I totally agree! When this post went up, I’m sure tons of working moms all across the country were yelling at the computer monitor “You blog from home and set your own schedule! TAKE SOME NAPS!!!”

      Seriously, my baby isn’t a great sleeper (we’re just NOW down to 2 wake-ups a night, at almost a year old) and none of the sleep books or suggestions worked for her, despite every attempt, but I’ve still gotten up at 6 am every morning and gone to work for 9 hours 5 days a week, ever since she was 12 weeks old. I haven’t gotten a stretch of sleep longer than 5 hours (and I can count the number of 5 hour stretches on one hand) since before she was born, and I still consider myself really lucky; my husband is a stay-at-home dad, and I only work 40 hours a week.

      Your body will adjust, you get used to it, and to be honest, it’s just part of motherhood!

      • Caitlin September 10, 2012, 10:13 am

        I do take naps but it’s not always possible to take a nap when the baby sleeps.

        I am very grateful that I work from home, but I just want to throw this out there: I do a LOT of work besides the blog – I help the husband run his business and I do a ton of freelance writing. I don’t blog about my work schedule because quite frankly that is boring, but I have essentially been working 20 – 30 hours a week since the day we came home from the hospital. This is a lot easier than working 40 hours a week from an office, but I am not a purely SAHM. There’s a lot in my life that doesn’t make it onto the blog.

  • Brianne September 9, 2012, 4:17 pm

    Caitlin, I completely feel you on this post. I am a mother of 7-month old twin boys so I have dealt with what you’re going through….times two! haha. The first three months were just a blur/guessing game. We had to roll with the punches and just do whatever worked at the time. Somehow, right after they turned 3 months old, things SLOWLY and magically started to work themselves out. Once your pediactrician oks it and you feel comfortable with it, these are the things that worked for us
    -slowly start to move bedtime earlier and make your bedtime routine consistent so Henry can anticipate it. Our boys start their bedtime bottles at 7 now and are asleep by 7:45.
    -try to start putting Henry down for naps at consistent times during the day (once you can really tell his signs that make it easier to anticipate his sleepiness) We swear by naps. If the boys nap throughout the day, they sleep SO much better at night.
    -slowly start weaning at night. If he is gaining weight like he should be, this should be ok with the pediatrician and relatively easy.

    Those are just a few tips but I could talk for hours about it haha so if you ever have questions feel free to contact me or check out my (new) blog where I will start adding more and more experience based information 🙂 Our boys take three naps a day now, Sleep from 8-6 with rare nighttime wake ups, and soothe themselves back to sleep. I promise between 3-4 months there is a change that slowly starts to happen and Henry will naturally help you figure out what works best for him 🙂 Sorry for blowing up your blog haha

    • Melissa September 10, 2012, 5:37 pm

      Same here….we have 10 month old twins and between 3-4 months was a HUGE turning point! They went from waking up 4x night to once and then none, it was glorious! The big thing was putting them in their nursery! We did this at 12 weeks old and I was scared out of my mind, but they instantly went from 4x night to only one or 2! And with our video monitor, I knew they were okay! Then we did end up letting them CIO which we said we’d never ever do, but I swear, it worked. They now soothe themselves back to sleep SO well! Our pediatrician recommended it because at this age (or later if you aren’t ready) you are teaching them life long sleep habits! But with that being said, you need to do what YOU are okay with, whatever that may be! But chances are at this point, he doesn’t NEED the night time feedings and it’s more habit and not knowing how to fall back asleep on his own! Another thing that helped us, cluster feeding before bed! They’d usually have 4 oz bottles during the day but before bed they’d drink 8-12 oz!!! And it worked. Also as others mentioned, seems odd but early bedtime usually = later sleep! We moved bedtime ahead to 7pm and they now sleep til 7am! It’s really odd and surprising but it’s true!

      Good luck….no matter what, it WILL get better!

  • Morgan September 9, 2012, 4:31 pm

    Caitlin, I could have written this myself. My baby still doesn’t sleep well and she’s 9 months old. I read every sleep book out there, tried every sleep trick in the book and nothing really worked. It just made me angry when moms of good sleepers tried to tell me what they did that magically worked. Trust me, if someone suggested something, I’d probably already tried it multiple times. Sleep deprivation can many you crazy.

    Anyway, here are some things that helped. I’m no expert because my baby still doesn’t really sleep through the night, but I’ve been where you are and noticed that some things worked better than others.

    1. Swaddled her and put her to sleep in the rock n play sleeper. She hated being flat on her back, but I didn’t know that until I tried another way of letting her sleep. At around 5 months old she became a stomach sleeper which helped things out a lot, too. She could roll over by then so it wasn’t a big deal to me. ALso, the swaddle helped with the startle reflex. I know you do this anyway, but the rock n play/swaddle combo magically made her naps go from 30 min to 2 hours. AMAZING.

    2. Give a paci. all the freakin time at night. H is a little young to be able to put it in his own mouth, but when swaddled and in the rock n play, they stay put pretty easily. especially the wubanub.

    3. I stopped putting her in footed pajamas. I dont’ know why, but I noticed a pattern that when she wore non-footed sleepers, so slept better. Now i buy the one-piece pajamas from Baby Gap that don’t have feet, or a shirt/pant combo.

    Hopefully something works for you. My girl was also a snacker, and I noticed a huge change in sleep around 8 months old when she started eating larger bottles during the day. My pedi suggested making her wait for food so she’ll eat more at once. It worked.

    • Brianne September 9, 2012, 4:55 pm

      Rock and play sleeper all the way! Fully agree

      • Melissa September 10, 2012, 5:33 pm

        The rock n play sleepers are AMAZING!!!!!!!!!! We had them for our twins and recommend them x 1,000!!!!!

  • Ellen @ Wannabe Health Nut September 9, 2012, 4:33 pm

    I’m sorry, I don’t have any advice for you! I bet your healthy eating is making your lack of sleep even more bearable than it would be otherwise—consuming lots of nutrients during the day makes it so your body doesn’t need as much sleep to recover. Fingers crossed it gets better soon though!

  • Amykinz @ Foodie 4 Healing September 9, 2012, 4:36 pm

    Have you read “Babywise” by the Ezzo’s yet? It has saved my life w/sleeping w/both of my children. I have created cheat sheets, based on the book, for every age and stage. Let me know if you’d like them and I can email them to you. Another good book to couple w/”Babywise” is “Healthy Sleep Habits”. You will find Mom’s in different opinions about this, but I’m an avid believer that babies need be trained to put themselves to sleep. And also, that they thrive on a routine. Mom decides when nap starts and ends, not Baby (and this means there will be some Cry It Out. Eventually, when baby learns to self soothe, they will fall easily into the schedule that Mom has set for Baby. My baby’s were both sleeping through the night (6+ hours) by 4 months old (my 1st was sleeping through the night at 6 weeks!)

  • Kelly September 9, 2012, 5:25 pm

    I am sorry you are so tired. I don’t have any advice because I don’t have children so instead I will just tell you that I am thinking about you.

    I also thought the sleep information was really interesting. According to sleep positions I am a Yearner. Cool stuff.

  • Farrah September 9, 2012, 5:43 pm

    Hi:) first time commenter long time reader;)
    My little girl is 5 weeks. We bath her at 7:30 ish feed her swaddle her and put her to bed. The last 3 nights she gets up at 9 so we feed her again change her and swaddle. She’s back in her bassinet by about 9:45 or 10 then doesn’t wake till 3. Repeat what we do and then up again at 8. Prior to these last 3 nights she was getting up in between feelings and we used a pacifier to prolong the feed and soothe her. It is working. We did this with my son too ( he is 2 now) but not till he was about 8 weeks. He started sleeping through the night at aboutv4.5 months and still does. Routine is KEY. he sleeps every night from 7:40 to at least 8:15am. Hope this helps. I bet because I said all this my girl will be up all night haha

  • Jennifer (take the day off) September 9, 2012, 6:13 pm

    Another STRONG vote for the tips and tricks in the book Babywise!!

    My little girl (now 4 months) slept through the night for the first time at 6 weeks and made sleeping through the night a habit at 8 weeks. Now she sleeps from about 8pm to 8 am (and I “dreamfeed” her in her sleep at 10:30pm before I go to bed). I would have had no clue what I was doing without the principles in the book. Check out the blog “chronicles of a babywise mom” for great tips on getting little Henry on a schedule and for a bunch of other practical advice. There is are so many different theories out there on baby care, but I find her insight very helpful, well organized and encouraging. Check it out and look forward to everyone in your house sleeping longer, later and better!!

    And PS: you are doing great!!

  • danielle September 9, 2012, 6:16 pm

    I can’t recommend the book “healthy sleep habits, happy child” by Dr. Mark Weissbluth more! The organization of the book leaves a lot to be desired but the approach totally worked for us. Yes some is timing and luck but you really can influence your baby getting the right amount of rest. To this day we have a great sleeper (19 months) and honestly it’s been pretty smooth since month 4 taking this approach. Not like you have time to read now but it’s was a huge help!!

  • Susan September 9, 2012, 6:18 pm

    And this is exactly why you made the right decision to start your family in your 20s, Caitlin. Just imagine if you were in your late 30s and both you and daddy both had to work 40 hour/week 9-5 jobs as a new mommy. That’s what most of America does, so feel blessed that you are young, energetic, and have personal schedule flexibility.

  • Sarah B September 9, 2012, 6:40 pm

    Such a timely post. My wee bairn is 8weeks old today and we have worked out that a feed at 2145 means sleep until about 0130-0200. Then we sleep until about 0500-ish and perhaps again until 0700. We’re still ‘going with the flow’but as a self confessed control freak I really really need more sleep and to be able to control when we sleep. Really interested to read the comments about earlier to bed means more sleep. We will try that.
    Caitlin you are a great Mum, and having thoughts and questions like this blog post just reaffirms that 🙂

  • Vicky (Little Baby, Big City) September 9, 2012, 6:50 pm

    My 7 month old still gets up once or twice a night! I started co-sleeping with him at two months…. So easy to breastfeed and go back to sleep. It’s AWESOME!

  • G September 9, 2012, 6:57 pm

    My kids were terrible sleepers until about 1 year. With my first we did the stay up late (9:30) thinking he would sleep longer. Then at around 4 months I realized every day he would fall asleep at 6 pm. I realized I was so busy trying to figure out how to get him to sleep through the night that I was missing the cues he was giving us. He would still wake up twice or three times a night, but putting him down at 6 would give us a little break, relaxation and sleep until his next wake up around 11. Also, my husband and I did shifts with both kids. I’m a morning person and the husband is night. So he had until 1 a.m. And I would have after. That way sometimes when we were lucky one of us would get to sleep through the night. Another, tip someone gave me was wait 5 minutes before you go see them when they wake up. Nothing terrible is going to happen in five minutes and they might go back to sleep. This helped occasionally. We didnt do thid until around 4 months. It wasn’t magic, but it helped keep things manageable for the year each of no sleep. We still put my 4 and 2 year old down at 7 pm. They are up early 6 am, but we are up getting ready for work so it’s not bad and we get a few hours at night for each other.

  • Sarah September 9, 2012, 7:11 pm

    No advice on the sleeping baby thing (it will eventually happy but kids wake up occasionally at night for years … I was in my 4 1/2 yr olds bed last night at 4am 🙂 )

    But I will say that certainly for me and lots and lots of other Mums I know the 12-16 week mark is tough. I think you hit a wall about now physically/emotionally/mentally. The first adrenaline rush of having a new baby is over – they are now must part of your everyday (which is lovely, but not longer AMAZING). And getting up at night is no longer a novelty and you do wonder if there is light at the end of the tunnel. It is pretty normal to feel worn out about now.

    Just keep eating well, working out and TRY your hardest to sleep when you can. My boys are 4 1/2 and nearly 3 and I STILL go to bed about 8.30-9pm without fail. If I want to get to 6am gym classes or feel sane at 6am if they wake me, that is what I do. And on the three days they are in daycare (I’m a freelance writer) I almost always have an afternoon nap – usually I set my alarm for 45 mins (one sleep cycle) and I find that helps me get through the day.

    • Sarah September 9, 2012, 7:11 pm

      It will eventually happen I should say… you’ll be happy too!!!

  • Pam September 9, 2012, 7:16 pm

    Hi Caitlin,

    I don’t have a baby so I haven’t tried this out yet, but the sleep suggestions in “Bringing Up Bebe” by Pamela Druckerman make a lot of sense. The book goes into it quite extensively, but to summarise, babies may wake or seem like they wake up in the night, but if you leave them for a few minutes, they learn to settle themselves. It didnt advocate letting them cry it out for a long period of time, but just for a few minutes so the baby would calm on his own. The book also recommends not feeding at night, but keeping a schedule in the day of approximately 9, 12, 4, and 7. Again, I don’t have a baby, but the book was great! Worth a read for sure.

  • Fran September 9, 2012, 7:23 pm

    I think some people try an earlier bedtime eg 7-7.30 then they wake up for a feed just before you go to bed, depending on your bedtime! My parents used to ‘ignore’ me if they knew I had eaten enough, so I started to sleep through the night pretty early on. Hope you start to get some more sleep soon.

  • Angela @ Happy Fit Mama September 9, 2012, 7:24 pm

    My twins were sleeping through the night by 3-4 months. It does seem odd but putting them down earlier in the night works. They’ve gone to bed at 6:30 since they were that age. Schedules are key! Good luck! Just know that it will happen someday.

  • GDadHTP September 9, 2012, 7:29 pm

    do what my mom did – a wee dram in the bottle…

  • JenRD September 9, 2012, 8:21 pm

    Two things that saved our sanity: “The Sleepeasy Solution: The Exhausted Parent’s Guide to Getting Your Child to Sleep from Birth to Age 5,” and the Baby Merlin Magic Sleepsuit The fist is a must-have book (dare I say even better than “healthy sleep habits, happy baby”), no matter what camp you are in on sleep training. It gives you simple, straight-forward reasons why your baby may not be sleeping, and what you can do south them (more than just cry-it-out). The second is a sleep suit for babies who have outgrown the swaddle, and still want to be cozy. Our daughter only wanted to sleep in her car seat, and once we got this, was sleeping longer stretches in her crib. Good luck, this too shall pass!

  • Jen September 9, 2012, 8:24 pm

    Oh, and for a laugh, watch a you tube video of Samuel Jackson narrating “Go the F*ck to sleep”.

  • Kelly September 9, 2012, 9:24 pm

    I know a lot of people here are recommending co-sleeping, but we actually found the opposite to be true for us – we all seem to sleep much better with the baby in her crib in her nursery. We put white noise on, swaddle the crap out of her and give her a pacifier. She still wakes up more than we’d like, but it’s better than it used to be when she was in our room. When we travel she sleeps in her Rock n Play next to our bed, and we’ve noticed that every time one of us clears our throat or rolls over in bed it seems to disturb her sleep. Every baby is different and I know co-sleeping works great for a lot of parents, so that’s just some food for thought!

  • Kerry September 9, 2012, 9:37 pm

    Whatever you try do for at least 4 nights.

    This ship may have sailed but don’t pick Henry up. Whenever my daughter would fuss I would only pick her up if instinctively I knew she was hungry, and i was picking her up to feed her. Send clear messages, it is all about symbolism they ate little computer chips at this point. Otherwise, I would shush, soothe while she was in her crib. The miracle blanket and buying 15/20 minutes sticking the paci in taught her she wasn’t hungry. My daughter slept from 7:30-7 at 3 months and still does. She is 13 months. Push the limits now, as it only gets harder as he gets older.

  • Erin September 9, 2012, 10:58 pm

    Hi Caitlin! My daughter is now 19 months old and she slept through the night at 6 weeks, and has been a great sleeper since then with few exceptions (teething, etc). We did all the Happiest Baby tricks that you are doing (swaddling, shushing, white noise), but she was still waking up a lot. We hired a postpartum doula, aka miracle worker, to help me out during my maternity leave since we had no family nearby, and the first thing she suggested was moving the bassinet out of our room so we all wouldn’t wake each other up. She was only 3 weeks old at the time, and she immediately stretched to 4ish hours between night feedings, so we were only up 2 times a night. We then moved her to room with her own crib within the next 2 weeks, and that’s when she started sleeping through from about 8pm to 5am. We also used a crib wedge pillow at the advice of our doula, and that seemed to help her get more comfortable going to sleep rather than being flat on her back. I know it’s controversial, but it worked for us!

    I know a lot of people are against cry it out, but it really is good to let them cry a little to see if they’re serious. You want to get healthy sleep habits in place sooner rather than later, because it only gets more difficult to make changes as babies get older. I have many friends who have co-slept, fed on demand at night, etc and they seem to have a much harder time getting their kids to sleep well once they are toddlers. Don’t set up any habits now that you don’t want to continue until he is 2 or 3!

    Also, once you move him to his room full-time, turn the monitor off at night if your room is close enough. You will be amazed at how much better you will sleep when you don’t hear every little noise he makes. If he is serious and needs something, trust me, you will hear him!

    Hope this helps,

  • ali September 9, 2012, 11:12 pm

    Check out there are so many great articles outlining some really important concepts to help baby sleep in longer stretches. Good luck! I have a 4.5 month old and we are still having some major sleeping issues so we are just starting to sleep train.

  • Lindsay @ Healthforagers September 10, 2012, 12:23 am

    I would recommend a schedule along with cluster feedings and a dream feeding. Feed him with small increments of time in between towards the end of the night and then slip into his room right before you go to bed and feed him a bottle in his crib without changing his diaper or durping. Then offer him a pacifier if he cries in the middle of the night. We have been doing this for about 2.5 weeks now and our daughter normally wakes up once in between 9:30 p.m. and 8: 30 a.m. but I just give her a pacifier and she goes right back to sleep.

  • claire September 10, 2012, 12:58 am

    I feel for you. The reality is, some babies are just more challenging in the sleep department than others. You will get a lot of advice and suggestions, but they just may not work. The only thing you can count on is time. With time, things will improve. Year one can be almost impossibly hard. I was there and I read every book, tried everything I was told and my baby was (and still is) a poor sleeper. You’ll make it through! Hang in there!

  • Emily B September 10, 2012, 7:09 am

    I don’t have any kids but I think, Caitlin, you’re doing a great job with the wind-down period (lullaby, feed, cuddle etc). Even adults benefit from winding down before sleep. Maybe add in a bath before bed as “most” kids find this soothing. I was one of those kids that hating sucking anything, I’d spit pacifiers out and finger/thumb sucking – Mum said I used to spit them out in protest:P Cosleeping isn’t huge where I live, I can see why people like it though – but having the baby in bed with her isn’t something my mum practiced, my Dad snored and we were all lighter sleepers too – but everyone’s parenting is different.

    The consistent feedings will cease and when he’s a teenager you will NOT be able to get him out of bed in the mornings XD so make the most of the younger years. You’re an AMAZING Mum with or without the 8 hours of sleep!

  • Jill September 10, 2012, 8:46 am

    I have a 10 week old and he will sleep in a 6-8 hour stretch BUT it is from 7-2 ish and then he will get up again at 5 and then 7 or 8 for the day. Sometimes I luck out and he only wakes up once. What I discovered is that early on I was picking him up thinking he needed to be fed but he was just coming out of a sleep cycle and I was actually waking him up! That’s why he was just snacking and not eating a full meal. I put his cradle on the the other side of the room and put a loud fan between us so I can’t hear him unless he is actually crying and voila! only 1-2 wakeups a night. I did read Healthy Sleep and got a bunch of great tips (babies need to go back to sleep within 2 hours of wakefulness) from that but I do think some of it works best on a baby 4 mo. plus (out of the 4th trimester).

  • Stephanie @ Food and Fitness 4 Real September 10, 2012, 10:41 am

    Another fun fact with kids – even after you finally get them to sleep through the night as babies, they can develop sleep problems as they get older. My daughter started having night terrors around age 3 – 3 1/2 and we would have to attempt to soothe her for about 10-15 minutes before she would calm down. This is also the age she started crawling into our bed around 1-2 AM and sleeping between us. She just turned 6 and we finally got her to sleep in her own bed about 3 months ago. The problem is my son is 3 and just started having night terrors two weeks ago. I have a feeling we will experience the same thing with him for a couple of years… Sleep deprivation just becomes part of parenthood. My husband and I take turns being the comfortor each night and we take the kids to their grandparents house for a sleepover on weekends so we can have one morning to catch up on sleep!

  • Sonya September 10, 2012, 11:14 am

    Found this article via a friend and thought it may be helpful to you:

  • danielle September 10, 2012, 11:29 am

    Definitely look into Moms on Call! I loved it because it wasn’t just another confusing book with no real plan–this gave schedules, advice, tips, tricks–and it is super breastfeeding friendly! It is put together by real moms (who are nurses) so it is practical and realistic. We have a 7.5month old and haven’t seen his cute little face between the hours of 7pm and 6:30am since he was 12 weeks old. It isn’t just luck, you have to work at it! 🙂 But it is so worth it!

  • Joanie September 10, 2012, 12:52 pm

    At this age, what we did with my son was to take away one night-time feeding at a time. Instead of feeding him, we would go in and rub his back and leave the room. That way he knew we were there but we didn’t feed him. Your pediatrician can probably agree that at his age/weight, he doesn’t need to eat during the night. Good Luck!

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