Our fourteen-month-old has never been a particularly good sleeper, and in recent weeks it’s been brutal; she’s squalling in bed every so often, and has a major meltdown in the middle of most nights. Yeah, we’ve read the books and done the research and have tried some things and are trying others, some kids are just lousy sleepers. Time is on our side. I should be going to bed earlier, only it’s summer and the evenings are warm and my work is compelling and everything’s hurtling forward. But I apologize in advance to those I may snarl at inappropriately.


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From: Nick Lothian (Aug 07 2007, at 23:43)

Our boy is 21 months. During the first 20 months we had 10 nights he slept though. Now he's sleeping though at least 2 out of every 3 night...

http://nicklothian.com/blog/2007/08/07/sleep-glorious-sleep/ has some details - basically we went to a sleep specialist and it actually work!!!!


From: Dominic Mitchell (Aug 07 2007, at 23:51)

I wish you well. Right before our daughter was born, a work colleague told me how he'd had little sleep during the first 5 *years*. This petrified me. Thankfully, she's 11 weeks right now and sleeping through the night. But the memory of those first few weeks isn't gone yet. So I sympathise and hope that she starts to appreciate sleep soon.


From: Jason R Briggs (Aug 08 2007, at 01:24)

Tim: have you tried controlled crying? It's an Aussie technique where you comfort the kid until they stop crying, then immediately leave. Once they start crying, you wait a couple of minutes, then go back and comfort again. Each time you wait a minute or so longer. Supposedly works on kids from 6 months of age. Seemed to work on my daughter when she had a bad patch at about one-and-a-half.

Dominic: 11 weeks...? Mwah ha ha ha.

(unsubtle reference to the fact that 11 weeks doesn't even amount to a 'phase').


From: Pete (Aug 08 2007, at 03:20)

I feel your pain... I'm currently living underneath a bunch of party-animal heavy metal types, and look forward to the day when I don't get woken up by bad Metallica covers.


From: Mike (Aug 08 2007, at 05:27)

I have a 17 month old and she is just not interested in sleeping. Too many things to explore and learn about for her to sleep more than 10 hours a day - 9 hours at night and 2 half hour naps. She is not tired and is a very happy, smart baby, so we can't complain too much, except when we are over-tired. We read all of the books and went to the sleep specialist, but nothing has helped. Now we just accept it and move on. It feels less stressful that way at least, compared to trying to fight it.


From: Gerald (Aug 08 2007, at 07:53)

I share your pain - the first 13 months of Melinda's life were - sleepwise - the worst of my life, beating the year in the army.

She started to sleep on a trip to Germany, where we used the typical light-proof shutters to totally darken her room. Back in the U.S. I created an elaborated set of blankets in front of her windows to make sure there would be no light in her bedroom. Worked pretty well for her, but YMMV.


From: len (Aug 08 2007, at 10:43)

My best strategy was to lay them on my chest and sing MnaMna (the song from the Muppets that became a pop hit and used in commecials). It only seemed to work for males and I suspect has something to do with the octave (low tones droning semi-regularly). They would cry if I stopped but they would drift off to sleep.

Don't try it on the co-workers. Apologize and say 'baby hours'. All of the parents understand instantly and no one else cares.

Beautifully true: my 13 year old six foot tall (really!) daughter occasionally comes and lays her head on my shoulder when sad and I am tempted to sing mna mna. My son just shakes my hand. I can wait for grandkids to do it all over again, but I look forward to it a lot.


From: Aleks Totic (Aug 08 2007, at 18:21)

I feel your pain. I work from home, have a 20mo, and my productive time is trending towards 0 since the 12th month. Our kid has been an iffy sleeper since the beginning. Some hints: it might be teetihing, and Motrin helps. Sleep begets sleep (corollary: sleeplessnes begets sleeplessnes). When Ollie would get totally of the sleep track, we'd have sleep camp days where the entire day is focussed on him sleeping. This would sometimes pay off and get him back to sleeping.


From: will (Aug 09 2007, at 13:04)

I'm reminded of a story my father told me recently about how my grandfather (who was working nightshift at a steel mill at the time) went off on him (a 3-year-old) for stomping around during the daytime when he was trying to sleep. The exchange went something like, Father: "Goddamit! Who's stomping around out there? I'm trying to get some goddam sleep in here." Child: "It's me Dad." Father: "Ah, fer crissakes, can't you walk on your goddamn tiptoes?" Child: "Uh, what's tiptoes?" After which my grandfather proceeded to teach him about walking on his tiptoes. Perhaps we need to revive the practice of gratuitous swearing and yelling?


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