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My daughter won't nap???
She will be 7 months soon, and she is downright miserable during the day. I had heard soooo many times from different people NEVER to bring her to bed with us but... our situation demanded it (we didnt have a crib or bassinet for a while when we visited family, and we werent gonna buy something just to use for a month). And honestly, I enjoyed it when we had a queen size bed (now we have a double). But she used to nap on her own just fine. Now however, it seems as if she WILL NOT nap unless I am holding her, or I nurse her laying down and sneek away, but even that will only last for about a 1/2 hour. She will get a total of 40 mins naptime for the whole day, sometimes even less :( I'm going nuts! If I nurse her and put her in the crib once she is right asleep (wont even stir when I stand), and she doesnt mysteriously wake as soon as her body touches the mattress (happens ALOT) then she will sleep for about 5 mins. I've tried letting her cry while I stand there and sooth her, or even leave the room for a bit, but she will SCREAM for like 2 hrs or more, then get about 10 mins sleep for the trouble! I know each child is different, thus there is no specific no-fail strategy, but I would REALLY appreciate any advice (no rude "you shouldnt have done that"'s please), especially from parents who've had this kind of experience... thanks!
i know it may be frowned upon by some, by both of my daughters slept in our bed until they were 2. it was just easier for us and for breastfeeding. i would always have to lay down with them until they fell asleep until they were about 15 mos or so, when i would put them down for a nap by reading a book, then kissing them and saying, "now its time to go to nite-nite" and leaving the room. they cried at first, especially my second one, but after awhile they stopped and after a couple weeks they didnt cry at all. i understand that 'crying it out' just doesnt work for some babies; they get more and more upset and never give in. you just have to see what works i guess; some respond to being checked on every ten minutes but for some that upsets them more. i always tried to put them down awake though, because its easier to break the habit of laying down with them than it is to break the habit of holding them until they sleep. a trick we always used with our second when putting her down asleep was putting a little weight beside her, like a blanket or pillow, though you have to be careful with that; that they are old enough to not suffocate on it. hope this helps.
Swaddling works well for newborns, but you might be surprised how well it works for older babies, too. Try getting a thin, cotton knit blanket and fold the corners together to make a triangle. Lay the baby on the triangle (point-down) and wrap her tightly with her arms to her sides. I have cared for many babies over the years and have been successful in getting great naps out of them this way. Lots will go right to sleep right after you lay them down! Check her often if swaddling makes you nervous, but I think babies feel more secure this way, and it's kind of like being held. Good luck!