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Baby doesn't sleep thru the night & I'm working...what to do?

  1. #1
    premama is offline Registered User
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    Baby doesn't sleep thru the night & I'm working...what to do?

    Hello,

    I have a 5 1/2 month old who still wakes up 2 times (sometimes 3) in the night at about 12:00 am and 3 am. I used to wake up for the night time feeds but since I started work, I have asked my helper to feed her (forumula) at night as I was too tired to wake up 2 times in the night.

    I'm not happy with this arrangement because I would really like to "be there" for my baby when she wakes up at night - I'm already experiencing some problems with the baby being too attached to the helper. For the rest of the day while I'm at home and on weekends, I make sure that I take care of the baby completely (bathing, playing, feeding).

    I tried waking up at night to feed but I find myself exhausted at work the next day.

    Has anyone experienced a similar dilemna and how did you solve it?


  2. #2
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    carang is offline Registered User
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    yes, everyone who works both in and out of the home has experienced it.

    there are two things you can do:
    1) go to work tired for the next few months or
    2) get over it and let the helper do it.

    we all feel guilty. BUT we are NOT SUPERWOMEN! it is physically impossible to do everything and do it all well. if working outside the home is a must, then you need to do it properly. you will teach your child a good work ethic. so long as you make the time that you have together count, your child will love you. your child will KNOW who her mother is. it is only natural that if the helper is with the child more that the child will look to her for the first little while.

    my almost 3 yr old has grown up with the same helper since birth, and now my nearly 1 year old loves her too. it doesn't mean that they love me less. sometimes they cry for her, sometimes they cry for me and sometimes, they cry for hubby. that's just the way it goes.

    your child will love you just as much as you love her.

    relax and don't beat yourself up over it.

  3. #3
    snagito is offline Registered User
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    Premama, I know it's hard. If possible, can you get your little one to just be waking up once in the night for a feed? I think at this age it's possible - also I assume you will be starting some solids soon, that will also help in allowing her to go a bit longer. Ideally if you could wake the baby for a feed before you go to bed - around 10 pm maybe, then you could be looking at just the one 3 am waking. I think this would be the first way to make things better. Then, if I were you I would get up myself to feed baby Fri/Sat nights, and then maybe twice in the week, letting the helper tackle the other nights. I think a compromise solution might make you feel a bit better. Hope this helps. Hang in there.

  4. #4
    barbwong_130 is offline Registered User
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    Mothering always seems to be a compromise, especially when you are working as well. But remember the compromise doesn’t always have to be on the baby/family side. Occasionally it can be on the working side too.

    When I worked and felt really tired because of the demands of night time parenting I would take a day off (or half a day off) as sick leave to catch up on sleep. One advantage of the baby being used to you working is that when you take a day off like this is it is actually possible to sleep – as the baby doesn’t expect you to be home. So all you have to do is shut the door and pretend you went to work. I didn’t do this often, maybe only once every two or three months. But sometimes I found it was necessary. I found that one day’s extra sleep could keep me going for a lot of disturbed nights.

  5. #5
    capital is offline Banned
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    I experienced the same thing and was getting up about 2 times/night while working, after about 6 months of this we did do "cry it out" as I was exhausted, and it was time. I didn't go back to work until 12 months though, so baby was about 18 months old and it was definately time to cut out night feedings! The real reason the baby was feeding at night so long was due to my motherguilt over being back at work. I am sure I owuld have cut it out sooner ahd a been at home.

    at 5 months your baby may definatly still need to get up for a feed. Personally if it was me, I would do the night feedings myself,( I have never had any other option though, but if I did have that option of a helper I don't think I could have the helper feed my baby at night. I think that is a mother's role, plus I breastfeed, so unless I wanted a helper/wet nurse it still wouldn't be an option.) make it easier on your self by getting a rocker/recliner so you can stay half asleep during the feed. I had problems falling asleep after, but eventually learned to stay half asleep and that helped me be able to go back to sleep. I also HAD to go to bed earlier, 10:00 at the latest. That is hard to do because finally you have sometime to yourself to unwind, but it really makes you feel better to have that bit more of sleep.

    Good luck with whatever you decide.

  6. #6
    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
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    i forgot to say that i exclusively bf for the first 6 months, even though i was back at work by the time baby was 6 weeks old! i was going to bed by 8pm most nights.

    now baby is on formula and hubby does most of the feeds at night, although i get up and help out.

  7. #7
    joannek is offline Registered User
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    my daughter is 2yr 10mths & she STILL WAKES up at 12midnight & 3 am. sometimes only once before midnight, but mostly twice. during the first year, i beat myself up for letting helper give her the midnight feed & i struggled with trying to let her "cry it out"/ sleeping in her room but waking up the next morning exhausted-in-a-bad-mood-all-day & being non-productive-absent-minded / worrying that she's too attached to the helper/ etc.

    we've all been there. finally, i figured i'll let the helper attend to her at night, so that i'll not snap at my husband/daughter/helper during the day. when your baby turns 18mths, your child will know that you're the mother & you'll feel it. i know it's tough that she's attached to your helper (we've gone thru this topic in other threads), but soon enough, you'll know that you bb knows that you're the mother.

    when my bb was 18mths, i started telling her that daddy, mommy & her, we're in a love bubble, and je je (the helper) is outside the love bubble. and i tell her that we, being in the love bubble can take baths together & sleep in one bed, etc. now she loves being in the love bubble (i actually visualize a love bubble around us & you can tell she can feel it). i've also drew diagrams telling her where everyone is, that je je & the other helpers are outside the love bubble. that they love her very much but it's different than being in the love bubble. she understands & she knows they're hired help.

    the first helper left when my daughter was 22mths. she was extremely attached to her. now when i show her photos of the previous helper, she says the name of the current helper, she doesn't even remember her.

    what i'm trying to say is, don't underestimate the sensitivity of a young child, they can feel your special love to them & the special bond between parents & child. their smell is so sensitive that they can smell somebody who's blood related. (i read this in "what's going on in there?")

  8. #8
    kellyst is offline Registered User
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    yes have been there before, but as others have said, you just need to get over that year. i worked full time and have lots of people i get to be jealous over being close to my daughter. but by the time she's around 18mths, she somehow knows that mommy and daddy are the closest persons to her, even tho we spend the least time at home compare to jeje and grandmothers.
    we all know how hard it is when you're actually going through it, just hang in there for a bit, it will eventually come around.

    also, one suggestion is to sleep earlier, i still need to wake up once to tend to my 2 y.o. at night, but finds it much easier when i try to catch up on sleep soon after she has gone to bed. so you'll need to sacrifice on some evening times with the TV or hubby at night. but i find that it helps me make up for the interrupted sleep.

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