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Please only read and comment if you have a 'high needs'/difficult baby

Discussion in 'Parenting' started by bruno71, May 1, 2011.

  1. Hi I don't mean to be rude but I am only looking for some reassurance from others who have/have had difficult babies. I have had plenty of advice from those with content/happy babies and to be honest they just don't have a clue!
    For those of you who have seen my other posts, my LO is 7 months now and has been exceptionally difficult since birth. He screamed all day every day until he was 9 1/2 weeks, then cried most of each day until he was 4 months ish and since then has pretty much cried/whinged most of each day. Out of 7 days a week I would say that he whinges/cries for most of 4 or 5 days. He was diagnosed with colic, silent reflux etc but none of the medication worked and as he had happy periods some days, we deduced that he was just frustrated and this was why he whinged so much and that it wasn't a medical issue at all.
    Our HV describes him as a very difficult and unsettled baby and he continues to be so. Don't get me wrong he is soooooo much better than he was and things that I/we have influence over such as a good routine, eating well, drinking from a cup, socialising him etc, I think that we have come a long long way, but he is still such an unhappy chap for 75% of the time.
    When he is in a cheery mood he is so engaging/smiling/happy, he reaches out for people, kisses them etc but ths time is so short lived and it's killing me. On many days nothing seems to make him happy, he might have 5 mins playing happily with me, or on his playmat, in his jumperoo etc and then he whinges/cries. It's not separation anxiety as he does this even if he is sitting on my/OHs knee or next to us and if he is crying on his mat/jumperoo etc he doesn't stop if we pick him up. It appears to be boredom but I try so hard to engage/stimulate him whilst also ensuring that he learns that he has to entertain himself sometimes.
    As he has always been so diffucult, people have said to us just wait until he's 8 weeks, 12 weeks, 5 months, can sit up by himself etc and he will be better, but as each of these milestones have come and gone and he's the same, I think people have run out of things to say to reassure us. Does anyone out there have a similar experience and can tell me that it got better at 8/9/10 months or when they started crawling/walking etc? Our HV seems to think he is highly intelligent and this is the problem, has anyone else found this?
    We are now 7 months in and still having no enjoyable family time. We go to friends houses with babies/without babies, BBQs, for coffee, to the park, out with the pram, to baby groups, swimming etc and he just whinges. In order to keep ourselves from getting too down, my husband and I both go to gym alternate evenings and have nights out with friends but what we really want is some fun family time. Whereas some couples who have had a baby look at couples wihout children and miss the freedom, we don't feel that at all, we look at couples with babies our age who are happy and just wish we could start to have a bit of what they've got.
    My Mum and Dad have seen just how hard he is (my sister's LO is 6 weeks older and very content, she only cries when tired/hungry etc.) and have offered to look after him, which I have always refused until now as I felt like I should soldier on, but I have given in and they now have him one afternoon a week so that I can do any errands/jobs/relax. Like I say am not really looking for advice as we have seriously tried everything, but reassurance from anyone in a similar situation would be fab! Sorry for the long post, but my OH and I were looking forward to these few days off together so much, we bought LO a new ball pool to put in the garden and tried to have some fun outside like every else seems to be and LO just cried. OH said he would rather be at work and I don't blame him. It makes me feels so down when my sister/friends with babies/people on here talk about enjyoying the nice weather and I just think 'how??'
     
  2. Hi I don't mean to be rude but I am only looking for some reassurance from others who have/have had difficult babies. I have had plenty of advice from those with content/happy babies and to be honest they just don't have a clue!
    For those of you who have seen my other posts, my LO is 7 months now and has been exceptionally difficult since birth. He screamed all day every day until he was 9 1/2 weeks, then cried most of each day until he was 4 months ish and since then has pretty much cried/whinged most of each day. Out of 7 days a week I would say that he whinges/cries for most of 4 or 5 days. He was diagnosed with colic, silent reflux etc but none of the medication worked and as he had happy periods some days, we deduced that he was just frustrated and this was why he whinged so much and that it wasn't a medical issue at all.
    Our HV describes him as a very difficult and unsettled baby and he continues to be so. Don't get me wrong he is soooooo much better than he was and things that I/we have influence over such as a good routine, eating well, drinking from a cup, socialising him etc, I think that we have come a long long way, but he is still such an unhappy chap for 75% of the time.
    When he is in a cheery mood he is so engaging/smiling/happy, he reaches out for people, kisses them etc but ths time is so short lived and it's killing me. On many days nothing seems to make him happy, he might have 5 mins playing happily with me, or on his playmat, in his jumperoo etc and then he whinges/cries. It's not separation anxiety as he does this even if he is sitting on my/OHs knee or next to us and if he is crying on his mat/jumperoo etc he doesn't stop if we pick him up. It appears to be boredom but I try so hard to engage/stimulate him whilst also ensuring that he learns that he has to entertain himself sometimes.
    As he has always been so diffucult, people have said to us just wait until he's 8 weeks, 12 weeks, 5 months, can sit up by himself etc and he will be better, but as each of these milestones have come and gone and he's the same, I think people have run out of things to say to reassure us. Does anyone out there have a similar experience and can tell me that it got better at 8/9/10 months or when they started crawling/walking etc? Our HV seems to think he is highly intelligent and this is the problem, has anyone else found this?
    We are now 7 months in and still having no enjoyable family time. We go to friends houses with babies/without babies, BBQs, for coffee, to the park, out with the pram, to baby groups, swimming etc and he just whinges. In order to keep ourselves from getting too down, my husband and I both go to gym alternate evenings and have nights out with friends but what we really want is some fun family time. Whereas some couples who have had a baby look at couples wihout children and miss the freedom, we don't feel that at all, we look at couples with babies our age who are happy and just wish we could start to have a bit of what they've got.
    My Mum and Dad have seen just how hard he is (my sister's LO is 6 weeks older and very content, she only cries when tired/hungry etc.) and have offered to look after him, which I have always refused until now as I felt like I should soldier on, but I have given in and they now have him one afternoon a week so that I can do any errands/jobs/relax. Like I say am not really looking for advice as we have seriously tried everything, but reassurance from anyone in a similar situation would be fab! Sorry for the long post, but my OH and I were looking forward to these few days off together so much, we bought LO a new ball pool to put in the garden and tried to have some fun outside like every else seems to be and LO just cried. OH said he would rather be at work and I don't blame him. It makes me feels so down when my sister/friends with babies/people on here talk about enjyoying the nice weather and I just think 'how??'
     
  3. I've only experienced 12 weeks of a really difficult baby, the best thing I ever did was take him for cranial osteopathy. Maybe he would have got better at 12 weeks anyway, all I know is 3 sessions later I had a different baby. No idea if it will help your LO but the one we used gave us a free consultation beforehand and were confident they could help before we paid any money. I suppose technically I'm one of those parents of content children giving advice so sorry, just thought it was worth mentioning.
     
  4. Hi thanks for the replies. I really mean no offence by asking for advice just from those who had experienced difficult babies, it's just that I find people who have 'average' or 'content' babies find it so hard to understand just how different our babies are and can't get their heads around why what works for their LOs won't work for all babies.
    I have read a lot of the Dr Sears stuff and my LO pretty much fits into the definition perfectly. He tends to feel things really deeply if you see what I mean, so he's really happy, really upset, really excited, really tired etc. There is no middle ground as the article said. It is reassuring saripop to hear that others are going through the same, as you say he is very switched on and everyone who meets him comments on how intense he stares!! I have alwasy been of the opinion that that is why he is so difficult, he takes EVERYTHING in and your description of not filtering anything out suits him perfectly. I too have started to avoid friends from NCT class as their babies are more or less very placid unless something is wrong-hungry etc., and they can't understand why mine is never happy!! I too am starting to worry that people might see it as my parenting, but I don't know how it can be as this isn't something that he has developed with age, he came out like this! I don't spoil him at all and have quite a strict approach to how he will be discplined when he is old enough to understand, I'm no pushover!
    Thanks pinkgk for the suggestion of cranial ost, unfortunately this was one of the many things that we tried early on to no avail, and £140 later, he was just as bad! Glad it worked for your LO, I have heard many stories of it working wonders for some babies.
     
  5. You said you read Sears stuff, do you attachment parent? I don't necessarily like labelling everything I do, but loosely I suppose I do AP. Or rather I started off that way instinctively, and then my LO didn't act like other babies, so I thought i was doing things wrong. My mum (with good intentions) gave me the Baby whisperer book and then I started driving myself crazy with stressing about how LO couldn't settle herself and we went through months of craziness while I tried to cram my square-shaped baby into a round hole (IYKWIM), finally I found Sears and all the high-needs baby stuff and a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders. It wasn't my sh1tty parenting that made LO the way she was, as you say, she is the way she is because that's just the way she is!!
    So now I do a lot of AP stuff, like I've started wearing her as Sears recommends this, (I'm sure you've read this) because high needs babies can often feel more secure if they've had increased physical contact. I also cuddle her to sleep (although I do then put her down) if she needs it, and occasionally bf her to sleep. But the most important thing is that I am not going to feel guilty for doing these things for my baby just because other people don't need to. I'm not 'spoiling' or smothering her, I always give her a chance to fall asleep independently for example. But if she needs a cuddle or to be rocked to sleep, I'm going to do it without worrying about it.
    I'm amazed by how susceptible to guilt and self-accusation I've become. I never used to question myself...
     
  6. I had a high needs baby. She cried from 1-6 EVERY day for what seemed like forever. all my friends babies happily played on the mat or sat in their bouncy chairs...not mine. All my friends babies slept in their car seats if in the car...or dozed off happily in the pushchair....not mine. All my friends babies were happy to let someone else hold them and take them for walks....not mine.
    She was diagnosed with silent reflux and given rantitidine which helped to a certain extent.
    We spent over £300 on cranial oestoepathy (which we could not afford) because everyone kept telling me it would help and i worried that if we stopped then I would have failed her.
    Then I read Dr Sears...and suddenly someone was describing my little girl.i was not the only one...............Just knowing that made me feel a little better. I got a Didymos wrap and carried her everywhere (she loved sleeping in it) I stopped trying to make her be like other babies and tried really hard to accept her exactly as she was.even if I did get very little sleep (she woke at least 10 times a night..co-sleeping was a must...we BF on demand...
    Now my little girl is 3. She sleeps in her own room, only cries when she is tired, hurt or I have said no chocolate.....She was the only one out of her and my friends children who went to preschool without a single tear (this the child who 12 months previously still would not let me go to the loo without her screaming..) She is a happy, sunny, contented very caring little girl.......
    It feels like it has taken for ever to get to this stage and i will say that there were many many times when i thought we never would..but patience (and a fair few tears on my part) have done the trick.
    Sending you virtual hugs ((((())))))........I know how hard it is!
     
  7. Lizzy, thanks for sharing, it's so good to know that high needs babies can turn out to be contented confident little children. I've often wished I could see into the future and see the effect that my parenting has on my LO! Fingers crossed, we're muddling through ok.
     
  8. My lo is a high needs baby (well toddler now). I found that doing things in an attachment way (bf on demand, carrying her everywhere, baby-led weaning, co-sleeping, etc) made things much easier, and made her happier.
    Everyone describes her as "spirited" or "strong-willed" and she is only happy when the world follows her rules. She's getting much better now, she's 14 months, and has even settled with the childminder, although it took her 3 months of constant complaining before she settled there. We started to turn the corner when she started crawling, but now she's walking the world seems to be a much happier place for her. We still don't get a massive amount of sleep, but we are now in the process of night-weaning, and moving her into her own room (on a mattress on the floor because she HATES her cot with a passion). Life does get better, but it does take a lot of work.
    Good luck with it all and I hope your lo finds something to make him happier.
     
  9. Hi, thanks for the replies and it is so good to hear that he might grow out of it by toddlerhood. I have no problem at all with him being 'demanding' and 'high needs' as this is his personality, but what really gets me down is that he just doesn't seem to enjoy being alive yet. He is hardly ever content and this is what I find so depressing. We have tried so much and have thrown everything at the problem-money, time, affection etc etc. We are starting to think that we should just sell all of the bouncers/jumperoos/playgyms/playtents and clear some space as he doesn't like any of them!
    I have looked at a lot of the info on Dr Sears' site and my LO really seems to fit into his definition, but there's not really any suggestion of what to do about it!! My gut feeling is that he demands stimulation rather than attention and that he just gets bored so easily. I don't know what else we can do to stimulate him though!
     
  10. Hello, I actually never come on this website because my children are far beyond that stage but I clicked in the wrong place and saw your post. I can totally identify with you, my first child sounds very similar to yours. She was an angry baby for a lot of the time. Going out with her quite frankly felt like an embarrasment because she cried quite alot. She seemed to need alot of entertainment and the one thing that calmed her down was learning to crawl. She kept me on my toes as she was in to everthing but she was happy. As a toddler she was just like every other child, and at primary school she was lovely. I understand how low you must feel and I do hope that your baby will follow a similar path that mine did.
     
  11. mine was horrendous until he could walk then all of a sudden he's sunny and smiling about 70% of the time, also - he's eating better now and before he would take formula I think he wasn't getting enough which made him scream far more. I am of the opinion that intelligent babies are more demanding as they can work stuff out in their head but can't action it yet which is why they get better as they can do more stuff like walk., (or i may just be talking total rubbish but thats what I think!!) Finger's x'd your little one gets easier too. xx

     

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