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And — here are some of our latest threadjacks of interest – working mom questions asked by the commenters!
- If you’re a working parent of an infant with low sleep needs, how do you function at work when you’re in the throes of baby’s sleep regression?
- Should I cut my childcare down to 12 hours a month if I work from home?
- Will my baby have speech delays if we raise her bilingual?
- Has anyone given birth in a teaching hospital?
- My child eats everything, and my friends’ kids do not – how should I handle? In general, what is the best way to handle when your child has some skill/ability and your friend’s child doesn’t have that skill/ability?
- ADHD moms, give me your tips to help with things like behavior in the classroom, attention to detail, etc?
- I think I suffer from mom rage…
- My husband and kids are gone this weekend – how should I enjoy my free time?
- I’m struggling to be compassionate with a SAHM friend who complains she doesn’t have enough hours of childcare.
- If you exclusively formula fed, what tips do you have for in the hospital and coming home?
- Could I take my 4-yo and 8-yo on a 7-8 day trip to Paris, Lyon, and Madrid?
Teens' therapist in NOVA / DC says
Long shot, but can anyone recommend a therapist for a teen in near-in NOVA (Arlington) or DC? Am having a hard time finding a counselor with availability outside school hours.
Thank you very much in advance!
may be too far for you, but wrenn skidmore (near Bethesda) is fantastic with teens! she also does video sessions.
Chain Bridge Psychological Services in McLean
OP here — thank you SO much!
How long did it take your feet to return to normal or settle in size after my birth? After my first, I think my shoe size increased slightly – enough to make tight shoes unwearable but looser shoes then fit perfectly. Now that I’m 3 months pp with my second, I’m wondering if I should wait to buy new shoes or if I’m probably just a half size bigger now. Additionally, anyone have any luck with at home shoe stretchers?
I’m almost 4 year pp and mine never went back to their regular size.
Mine stayed 1/2 a size larger. Birth was over 4 years ago. I think once you get rid of all the extra fluid in the first few weeks, they’re pretty much where they’ll stay.
The fluid that makes your feet chubbier should subside in the first few weeks, but many people’s arches fall, making their feet longer by up to a size. That change is permanent.
This. Fluid retention will go away (pretty fast), fallen arches won’t. Your foot size 3 months postpartum is almost certainly your permanent foot size.
Mine swelled shortly before the birth and returned to their previous size within a few days / weeks.
Is there anything other than staying off your feet that can reduce the likelihood of this? And any research in terms of if it happens with your first is likely to repeat? I was lucky to have a desk job and a driving commute, wore support socks, etc, and still had to sadly donate 99% of my pre baby shoes. I’m now making do with a tiny rotation as we’re trying for #2, and it seems foolish to spend much money if I’m likely to not be able to wear them post.
I think the foot expansion is caused by weight gain and relaxing ligaments. There is very little you can do about #1 and nothing at all about #2.
Emily S. says
My feet grew a half size with baby 1 and not at all with baby 2. 4 years later, I’ve accepted that’s my new size. Buy the shoes that fit now. I tried some spray in shoe stretcher and it worked okay, but it didn’t make the shoes an entire half size bigger, like I needed.
Mine grew by almost full size when I gained and later lost 80+ pounds in my 20s. They didn’t grow at all when I was pregnant in my 30s (gained approx 50 pounds).
DD is 11.5 months and has been resisting bedtime hardcore for the past few days, with early wake ups (530ish) for the past month. She’s always been on the early side of wake ups but last time it was like this I interpreted it as a sign to drop the catnap and things settled down. She is taking two naps a day, of about 2.5 hours total (we have been messing around a bit with the length and whether to do shorter one in the morning or afternoon). Goes to bed around 730, 745.
It’s too early to move to one nap a day, right? We are moving in a week and will lose an hour, plus daylight savings has me thinking that we are looking at 330am wake ups for a while. Any advice?
Many day cares switch kids to one two-hour nap a day at 12 months, so I wouldn’t think it’s too early to make the switch if she seems ready.
yes, we were forced to switch to 1 nap at 12 months whether we were ready or not!
Sleep challenges! It’s like alchemy. You throw a bunch of stuff into the mix and see what works and what explodes.
I think in this case you can disregard the recommendations for nap lengths and consider your individual child. It sounds like she might be ready to go to one nap. In my limited experience: my second (14mo) has been on one 1.5h nap a day since 11-12 months, and she goes down at 7ish and wakes up fairly happy at 6.30. 13 hours seems within the appropriate range for total sleep, so we just roll with it. First kid at the same age was an early riser, a champion napper (2 naps till 15 months, 1 2-3h nap after), and went to bed fairly late (8pm+) for 12-13 total hours of sleep. Maybe try it for a bit? Be prepared to put her down really early if she takes only one early nap!
Daycare had us switch to one nap a day around 11.5 months, and during that month-long transition, our son woke up between 4:30 and 5:30 AM every day. Same bedtime: 7:30 PM. It sucked. At least once he settled into it, he went back to 6:30 AM wake-ups. Good luck, no sleep transition is fun!
My kiddo started dropping her first nap at 10 months. (If she took a mid morning nap, she wouldn’t take an afternoon nap half the time). By one year we’d figured out that lunch needed to be moved up and preferably outside and she’d fall asleep on the walk home. She was totally down to one nap by 12 months.
anon in aerospace says
Has anyone launched or lead a women’s network in their company? Any tips or things you wish you’d known beforehand?
Whatever you do, don’t make it a series of potluck lunches. This was tried at my organization and failed for obvious reasons.
I run one now. We bring in speakers, fund important (to us) initiatives. We also just added an app with a private community for connecting women and it’s worked well.
New Working Mom says
I recently had a baby and will be going back to work soon after being out for 12 weeks. Although I’ve got a great support system at home (husband who takes on his fair share of childcare/household duties & lots of family nearby), I’m pretty anxious about juggling everything. I think most of my anxiety relates to going back to a job that is different from the one I had before I went on leave. I got a promotion shortly before I had my baby and will be returning to a larger case load and taking on a management role supervising a team of ten attorneys (some of whom are more senior than me and practice in areas I’m not well versed in). I guess I’m looking for advice/tips on returning to work after maternity leave. Someone please tell me it’ll all be ok :) Advice on becoming a new manager also greatly appreciated!
You’ll be ok! It will be hard at times (but what isn’t). You’ve got this! Congrats on the promotion
Congrats on all fronts!!!!
I did exactly this with my 2nd… returned from mat leave to a new role in my org, plus still handling my old role, plus baby and preschooler. I am not going to lie, this was not the most fun time in my life.
– find a prepackaged, sturdy, nonperishable something that you like and stock up. This is how I found two specific flavors of KIND bars that are low sugar, yummy, and they work for breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner, midnight nursing snack, etc. stash them EVERYWHERE.
– figure out where your hard lines are and stick to them as much as possible. For me, it was leaving the office to pick up my kids in time for dinner. From the time that I parked the car at daycare until the time both kids were asleep, was 100% focused family time. No emails, no calls, etc. i logged back on later in the evening AND went into work early but would not skip dinner.
-Speaking of dinner (and lots of other things) – low standards. Seriously. You know the saying “So and So runs a tight ship?” Well, I accepted that for a little bit, I was going to be running a pretty freaking loose ship, in ways that weren’t long term detrimental. So sometimes I just used the elliptical at the gym. We had scrambled eggs for dinner AT LEAST once a week. God only knows how infrequently the house was getting cleaned. Figure out what you REALLY care about, and let everything else go.
– figure out how you and your husband can split things consistently. My DH always did AM wakeup and dropoff. Always. So I was free to go into work as early as I wanted, or hit the gym, or just leave the house early and get coffee. I was not beholden to anything at home at that time. The tradeoff was that I was responsible for pickups. DH could stay at work until 10pm if he needed. He does ALL the laundry and I accepted that I should never buy white shirts :-). Etc.
– find some way of taking care of yourself. Take a vacation day every now and then, keep the kid in daycare, and either have a date with DH or just sit quietly by yourself. Or – i occasionally “take the day off” but actually work from home all day, with nobody bothering me.
– prioritize how you spend your day but know your org. Example my role(s) were very meeting-heavy, so I flagged all not-a-complete-emergency emails and responded at night (delay send) or while pumping.
– do you have a trusted assistant or admin or etc? My support person was key to not losing my mind. She took over my incoming meeting requests and would proactively call people to move mtgs, etc when I was double booked. She would notice that I hadn’t eaten and would get people to move meetings. Meetings were kind of an issue for me, lol
– minimize outside commitments unless you really WANT to do them. Save your energy.
– River Site Prime and a Kindle
It will be great and you will be 1200% fine. This is just a very short phase even though it might seem like eons at times. Oddly enough, at work we make frequent reference to some stuff that my team produced at this time and it always gives me flashbacks to working on it late at night while the kids were asleep :-)
Boston Legal Eagle says
Congrats on both fronts! I had a similar though not exactly the same experience after both of my kids – brand new job after baby#1 (not by choice to start a new job) and my boss leaving and taking over that role shortly after baby#2. I hope this comes across correctly but there will probably be times when you feel like you’re not giving your best to your new role or you’re not perfectly qualified and have gaps in expertise, but keep reminding yourself that even this version of you is still the best person for the job! There is a reason you got promoted. Perfection doesn’t exist and you just do the best you can, learn from others, and keep trying. Same on the home front. Your baby doesn’t need some unrealistic, perfect version of a mother, s/he needs you, doing your best and loving him/her. I feel like that last bit is the answer to 90% of the “mom guilt” that comes up here.
For those of you who have little girls, how do you (or do you) explain periods? My 4 year old found my menstrual cup and was playing with it, and, when I tried to explain that it was not a toy, she had about a billion questions about what it is for and why. We try to be pretty frank, use the real names for body parts, that sort of thing, but something about telling her that someday she’ll have blood coming out of her [redacted] sounded a little too intense. I recall a couple years ago, she followed me into the bathroom and saw it in the toilet, and it really freaked her out. (And, hey, it’s not exactly my personal favorite part of life with a uterus, either.)
My 8 year old knows as we’ve had a talk about puberty. I got my period at 10 so I didn’t want her to be surprised if it happened early for her too.
For my 4 year olds, they’ve found my tampons and pads in the bathroom drawer and I just said ‘it’s something for that mommies use and it’s a bit hard to understand so I’ll explain more when they are older.’ Then change the subject.
My son has found period blood in the toilet, and I think I just said something like, it is normal for blood to come out of a woman’s vagina for a few days once every month if they aren’t pregnant. He accepted that without further question IIRC. He’s seven and we still haven’t really had the talk; I keep forgetting to figure out how to do this.
My daughter started asking questions when she was around 4 or 5, after seeing a tampon dispenser in a public restroom.
Our conversation (and subsequent follow-on convos) went something like this: “Women have a part of their body called a uterus. If a woman is going to have a baby, the uterus is the part of the body where the baby will grow. If a woman isn’t going to have a baby, the uterus has to clean itself, and it does that by bleeding for a few days. Tampons [pads/cups] help women with the bleeding so that it doesn’t go on our clothes. It doesn’t hurt [lies! ha.] and it’s just our bodies working the way they’re supposed to when it happens.” I did not mention that it would happen to her, and she hasn’t appeared to connect those dots.
FWIW, this explanation works well for boys too. My son got a similar talk around 5-6 after seeing tampons in our bathroom.
I didn’t really try at 4. I was pretty much the same as anonymous–it’s something mommy uses that we will talk about when you are older. If they pressed, I might try to describe it, but I’m not sure how to go about that in an age-appropriate way at 4.
By 8/9, I had explained everything in gory detail to my older daughter. She’s 11 now and still hasn’t started, but we still discuss it frankly whenever it comes up. She thinks it’s horribly unfair to women, but she’s otherwise very comfortable with what to expect and with discussing it with either me or my husband.
My younger daughter is 6 and we haven’t started discussing it yet. She hasn’t asked, and I haven’t explained because she’s years away.
It is horribly unfair to women!! lol.
The entire thing is horribly unfair to women!
Every month, a grown-up woman’s body prepares a soft place where a baby could grow, just in case she is going to have a baby. Most months, she is not going to have a baby and doesn’t need that place. If the woman is not going to have a baby, at the end of the month her body gets rid of the place for the baby so it can make a new one for the next month. The cup catches the lining of that soft place when it comes out of her body, and then she empties it into the toilet.
After writing this, I read FVNC’s “cleaning” explanation and like hers better. Much simpler. I wish I had thought of that when I had the same conversation with my daughter.
On the flip side, I shy away from words like “dirty” and “clean” to describe the normal state of private parts. I grew up in a house that used a lot of shame words to talk about bodies and s*x and I want to normalize my kids’ bodies for them in a way that I did not have growing up. There is nothing dirty about a woman’s uterus, which is what is inferred when you say that it gets “cleaned.” I recognize I am sensitive to this though!
I feel like my son would hear this and say, “I have an idea. Why don’t you just keep the nice place so you have it for next time?” Why, indeed :-)
I use a similar explanation for my two boys (ages 3 and 5) and have for quite awhile. I use the words “uterus”always and “period” sometimes. For example, “I’m changing my tampon to catch the lining of my uterus.”
For us, I’ve been explaining menstruation for a long time (I’ll get privacy in the bathroom one day!), so there wasn’t ever a time when periods were this new big concept. I build on the explanation as they’re ready. For example, I’ll talk about ovaries with the kids—the 5 year old kinda gets it, but it’s too much abstract detail for the 3 year old).
This is so interesting. My daughter noticed blood on the toilet paper for the first time when she was a bit under 3 and in the bathroom with me. I told her when girls grow up, sometimes blood comes out of their vag**a, and that it doesn’t hurt. She asked if it would happen to her, I said yes, and she (much as the OP predicted) said “I don’t want blood to come out of my vag**a!” and started sobbing. But since then (she’s 3.5), we’ve talked about it many more times and she’s now proud/excited that someday it will happen to her. I did not bother making the connection with uterus/babies — perhaps I should do that soon.
For other reasons, my daughter was obsessed with the idea of her being in my stomach, so I told her that when I was born, I was born with a whole bunch of eggs, and one of them was her egg. So it has been in my stomach until it was its turn to meet a sperm and it “hatched” and turned into a baby that eventually came out. Every month, my body makes a nice home for the egg, but if the egg doesn’t hatch, the house comes out and it looks like blood/has some blood in it.
Coach Laura says
Love the [redacted] and am laughing at it, wondering if you did that or if this s!te did it. Funny. Kids ask really funny questions.
The OP did it. Some comments get caught in m0deration, but Kat and the other admins don’t edit comments.
Seeking advice/commiseration: my son is 17 months old and I am the highly preferred parent. My husband literally cannot do anything for him without a protest from the baby if I am around. Most mornings my husband has to sit with my son while I get ready because he doesn’t want me out of his sight. We have a 4.5 year old as well and I vaguely remember a similar phase, but this is so extreme and so draining on both of us (me: because it has to be mama all the time. My husband: although he is a good sport I am sure the constant rejection is wearing on him to). Any advice?
For background, I was home with my son until 9 months. My husband was home with him from 9-14 months. As of 14 months we were both back at work and son is now home with a mix of nanny/grandparents. Husband’s work hours are shorter than mine and so he is home alone with the kids about 90 minutes every day before I get home from work.
Don’t give into your child’s demands for mommy. He’ll cry at first but then he’ll get used to being alone with daddy.
I found it helped to lean into the physical touch at this age. I used to babywear toddler on my back from the time I got home until supper. This allowed me to also pay attention to the older kid or cook dinner. I left the carrier slung over a dining room chair so toddler could bring it to me at other times when he needed an ‘uppie’. Something about being in the carrier vs just being held seemed to be more soothing. Around 2 years it got better and didn’t need the carrier as much anymore.
I’m so sorry — we’ve gone through stages like this and it was SUPER frustrating. I will tell you what we did just in case it helps, but who knows. My son went through a mama-obsession hardcore at around 15 months (he’s now 19 months) and what helped the most (I think — always hard to establish causality for certain!) was building some consistent routines that Dada *always* did. For us it was (1) the pajama-stories-teeth-bed routine and (2) getting him up in the morning and having some snuggles/toast on the couch. Between both of these things, he had about an hour a day of solo time doing enjoyable, predictable activities with Dada. Things are light-years different than it was a few months ago. I didn’t LOVE this solution because it meant me getting a lot less time with the toddler, but it did seem to work (and my husband is so much happier now — it was really tough on him to be basically rejected constantly).
My baby turns one next week and I’m having a lot of mom guilt because we aren’t having a party. Please tell me it’s fine! We just moved to a new area and don’t know a lot of people, and our family is far away. Her birthday is also on Halloween and we aren’t dressing up or doing anything particularly festive, so it’s like a double whammy of guilt. Everyone seems to be throwing these crazy 1-year-old parties with rented venues and caterers. I intend to bake her a little cake and give her a couple presents from us and family. She won’t remember any of this anyways. It’s ok right?
Mrs. Jones says
Of course it’s ok. She will not remember. If you have a photo with her and a cake, that’s all that you need in my opinion. Happy birthday!
It’s fine! We didn’t do a first birthday party and we might not do a party for 2 either.
100% okay and exactly what I did for all three of my kids. We also bought a few helium balloons because they loved balloons at that age. But balloons and cake are literally all they want for a birthday until they are at least 3-4. Save your party throwing energy for when they insist on parties at 4/5/6.
Yes! My one year old loved his cake and helium balloon. (Make sure you get the foil-aluminum balloon as the regular kind are huge choking hazards – not trying to fear monger but this is something I somehow did not know).
We had close family over, but our LO was completely clueless and slightly confused as to the reason for the gathering anyway.
+1. My thought is…don’t burn out on parties and start to resent them. We are just doing cakes for our twins at one. We might not invite anyone else..just our little family.
Then you can do an awesome party when they are 10 or whatever.
A one-year birthday party is for the parents, not the child. If you don’t want one, don’t have one.
Buy a big cupcake at your local bakery, take a photo, and done.
This is so true. We had donuts on a blanket at a playground with two good friends and their one year olds, because *I* wanted to do something. Do something if you want to – maybe bring the cupcake to a park! But it’s really all about how you feel. Not to discount your mom guilt feelings, but this is one where truly you do what *you* want.
Definitely ok!! A cake, maybe a party hat and a few balloons, snap a few pics, done!
Emily S. says
Totally fine! I started to say that we did a first bday party for my older daughter but not for younger daughter — and then realized I did do a party for 1st birthday, I just don’t remember! So, in the grand scheme of things, please don’t stress over skipping a party you might not remember! We did skip 2nd birthday party. Instead, we had a cake and balloons and grandparents came over for dinner and present opening. It was lovely not to plan and throw a party where the guests are sorely under appreciative. :)
Definitely OK! We did the large 1-year-old birthday party thing, and let’s be real, it was 100% for us. We knew it at the time. We wanted to throw a party because we’re big entertainers and hadn’t thrown a party or really had people over in 2 years and felt like we were emerging from a haze. In other words, it had more to do with us as people than us as parents.
The first birthday I have even vague memories of is my 6 year old birthday party, which was at a roller skating rink. Mostly, I remember begging my mom to have those wax bottles with colored sugar water in the goodie bags because those were the best.
Definitely okay. Maybe plan to celebrate in a small way with your family when you next see them if it seems like everyone would enjoy it (could be too much with the holidays, or maybe too much is appropriate for the holidays?)
Totally OK. We had a party for 1 year because my family wanted to have it. We did not do a 2YO party. TBD whether we do a 3 year old party.
I did not have 12 month parties beyond grandparents over for dinner. I’m SO HAPPY I didn’t spend my non-existent energy on it. In fact, I did the same for 2 years. Celebrate with a little cake and balloons at home and take pictures. Yay you made it through the first year!
Found out today at 9 weeks baby no longer has a heartbeat and has stopped growing. I see my OB tomorrow to discuss options, but based on my research I’m leaning D&C if that’s an option because 1) I don’t think I can emotionally handle essentially flushing my baby down the toliet and 2) I want this over and done with now. I’ve had to tell a few people at work because I’m working from home the rest of the week and trying to juggle a major project deadline on Friday, but any other advice or tips or getting through? Despite knowing this was a possibility because of the chorionic bumps, I thought I would be more emotionally prepared to handle this and I am not.
All the hugs. The majority of my friends who have gone through this have chosen D&C for the reasons you describe.
I’m so very sorry. I had a similar experience and it was heartbreaking. Be kind to yourself and think about letting people close to you know what happened if you haven’t already – I broke down and told a couple close coworkers and I was so glad I did, it helped so much to have someone who knew why I wasn’t myself and was looking out for me.
I am so sorry for your loss. I was pregnant with twins last year and lost one of them at 24 weeks. I don’t have much advice on being able to focus at work, unfortunately, other than maybe set deadlines – say 30 min or 1 hour – for which you will solely focus on work before taking a break. Other than that, miscarriage just sucks, it hurts, it’s ok to break down crying if/when you need to (even in your office with the door shut, if possible), lean on your partner as much as you need to, and be kind to yourself. With time, it does get better. Thinking of you.
anon for this says
I am so sorry for your loss. I had the same no more heartbeat finding at 11w with my first pregnancy. I decided to have a d&c (I think the u/s was Thursday and the d&c was scheduled for Monday — I did not bleed or anything in the intervening time, my body continued to act totally pregnant, puking and all). The prep for the procedure was very emotional for me — crying while getting checked in, etc. — but the procedure was not painful and I was not in a lot of pain immediately afterwards.
I think there’s a lot of misplaced secrecy around talking about early pregnancy and miscarriage, and for the most part, it felt really good to talk about it. I told my work besties when it happened and told others that I had close working relationships with eventually (particularly because I had an extended recovery period due to retained material — however still glad I went with the d&c). Regardless of whether you had indication this might happen, miscarriage just sucks, be gentle with yourself. I actually liked the miscarriage board on the bump dot com, just lots of people telling their stories and supporting each other — their pregnancy boards may be nutso, but I found that particular board supportive and helpful to my healing at the time. Eventually I ended up seeing a therapist that specializes in pregnancy & grief, and she was really helpful.
+1 to all of this – my experience is almost identical to this one, in all ways.
So sorry for your loss. I have no advice, but hugs from an internet stranger.
Irish Midori says
I’m so sorry. No advice, just hugs.
Big hugs to you. I had a miscarriage at 8 weeks in February of 2018. It was my first pregnancy at age 39. (I went on to have my daughter in February of this year at age 40). It was so hard. Be gentle with yourself and allow yourself time to grieve. Lean on your partner and don’t feel like it’s some secret you have to be ashamed of. I did not have the D&C, which I actually got a lot of judgment for from my friends. I took the medication only because my doctor told me that if I could tolerate the pain from the medication, there is less of a chance of complications and infection by taking the medication than a D&C (although I think it is miniscule with the D&C and none of my friends have had complications from their D&Cs). I knew we wanted to quickly try again so I thought I would do it that way and if the medication didn’t work, then I would have the D&C. The medication did work and I did not have any complications from it, but it was tough because of the whole toilet flushing image. I don’t think there is a right choice. Either way it’s hard. Just know you are not alone and you will get through this.
This is late, but I hope you check. I am sorry for your loss. Miscarriage is so, so tough. I have had two—one D&C at what was technically 10/11 weeks, although the fetus hadn’t progressed that far; and one natural MC at 5 weeks.
I, frankly, preferred the D&C. It was good for my mental health to know it was done (it had been a long and complicated process), and recovery was minimal. I was back at work the next day. The natural MC really dragged out and I bled for at least 3 weeks.
Hugs. It will get better. In the meantime, don’t beat yourself up for doing what you need to do to survive—hiring help, relying on your partner/family/friends, etc. I also found it helpful to tell people, once I could keep it together while I talked about it.
another sleep question says
Somewhat related to the sleep question above – my 13 mo has apparently decided to drop to 1 nap. Previously, he would nap for about an hour in the morning and 1-2 hrs in the afternoon. He would go to bed around 8 or 8:30 and get up around 7-ish. Now, he seems to nap from about 11:30 to 1:30 and has decided against sleeping in his crib. I’ve been putting him down around the same time – 8ish – because I’m afraid if I put him down earlier he will wake up too early. But by 8, he’s pretty darn tired. I nurse him to sleep and then put him in his crib, but he usually wakes up after an hour or so and stands up and cries. We’ve done CIO a couple times during his lifetime and it worked after just a couple days. But he seems more upset now that he’s older and he can stand in his crib, so CIO seems harder and sadder! Should I put him to bed earlier? Realistically he doesn’t need to get up until 7:30 a.m. Should we let him CIO if/when he wakes up in his crib? We co-slept with our older child for far too long and I don’t want to do that again, but sometimes sleep wins out and we just bring him to our bed so we can all get some sleep.
Is he hungry? If he’s having a growth spurt, he might be waking up hungry. Someone on here suggested a spoonful of peanut butter before bed helps.
A few thoughts:
Is it possible he is overtired by 8, such that he cannot get into a good sleep? Totally get not wanting to risk an even earlier wake up, but I might try an earlier bedtime to see if that helps.
I think it would be worth trying some sleep training that involves him falling asleep on his own. So not nursing to sleep, but going into his crib drowsy but awake. We like the book Sleepeasy Solution — we read it & started around 5 months, but consult it often when trying to figure out how to deal with some new bedtime issue (kid is now 2.5).
Maybe try an Ok to Wake clock for mornings — set it to the time he usually wakes, and then make a big deal when it goes off about how it’s morning, etc. Then you can try gradually moving the wake time back a bit if you want. I just found it hard to do CIO in the mornings if the kid has no reference point. If your CIO method involves check ins, I found it helpful to say “it’s not time to wake up yet, we will see you when your clock turns green, try to rest more” — otherwise how is a toddler supposed to know if it’s wake up time or not, particularly in a totally dark room with black out curtains (my train of thought…).
I’d definitely put him to bed earlier. When my daughter went down to one nap (11:45-1:30ish) she went to bed lights out at 7pm at the latest. 1:30-8pm is a longggg time for them to stay awake. We also did not nurse to sleep so she could fall asleep on her own. It helps if there’s an interruption like nurse then brush teeth then stories then bed.
another sleep question says
Thanks. I know I should stop nursing him to sleep, but it’s just so nice and easy! And I’m ok with changing the routine and/or weaning at this point. But if I lay him down drowsy but awake, he will pull himself up to standing and cry. And I’m not sure I have the heart to do CIO at this age. So then what?
We did Ferber/CIO but I know many on this board have used other sleep solutions not sure what they are. Honestly Ferber worked like a charm. Cried 30 mins first night, 10 the second, and went to sleep after 5 mins (no crying) the third night. Nursing to sleep is totally natural and your choice, but it’s a sleep assiociation so baby will need it to get back to sleep. I have friends who got stuck (unwillingly) nursing their 2-3 year olds to sleep because they never broke that sleep association.
FWIW – we nursed to sleep until I stopped nursing and then used Pantley’s No Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers. It’s a pretty straightforward read. CIO works for many families but wasn’t right for us, there are other options.
your kid is likely overtired and should go to bed much earlier. and i would also try to break the nurse to sleep association.
11:30 seems early for starting the nap. For reference, my kid wakes around 7:30am and nap is 1-3pm. His bedtime is around 8:30-45 these days (23 months). When he was 13 months, schedule was similar, but bedtime was 8:00.
As a counterpoint, my 16 month old is an 8-8(ish) sleeper and her nap is at noon (based on her daycare class schedule) and she is VERY ready for that nap. On weekends we really struggle to keep her up past 11:30 and she frequently lies down on the floor to “night night” herself sometime between 11:30 and noon. She does fine with the 8 pm bedtime, even when she only sleeps an hour and is up from her nap by 1 pm. She just needs a much longer awake interval in the afternoon/evening than the morning. She’s been like that since she was a young infant. So I do think it varies based on the kid.
I would start with a 7pm bedtime and CIO and see what time he wakes up naturally for a few days. Then if it’s less than ~10.5 hours or so, use an OK to wake clock to extend night sleep as per rosie’s advice. But it does sound like he’s overtired/exhausted by 8 and I suspect an earlier bedtime would help.
From time to time, people ask for recipes on here. I made this over the weekend (and am currently eating some leftovers as I WFH), and it is great. Easy to prepare, looks and tastes fancy. My only tip would be to add a bit of salt. Otherwise if you’re not afraid of butter, try it out!
Sad friend says
I have a friend who is a mom to a 6 month old. We don’t live close, but talk often on the phone. She had a severe case of prenatal/postpartum depression that required hospitalization and treatment. She was doing a lot better when I visited her a few months ago. In the last few weeks, she seems to be off, having delusions. I sent a message to her husband that I found her behavior worrying. I don’t know what I should do to help her. It’s really sad …. Should I continue to talk to her? And how do I respond to her delusions … I don’t know what I am looking for here but just wanted to share this with someone. Mental health issues are so difficult for the person suffering and the people who care about him or her!
Do you think anyone is in danger?
Besides the husband, there are two other adults in the house taking care of the baby. My friend has previously attempted taking life, so everyone is aware of the dangers … but I am thinking about her everyday and worrying….
So Anon says
If you know any of her treating providers (therapist, OB group, PCP, etc.) call and leave a message. They will not be able to call you back, but you can call and report what you are hearing. If there is any concern that someone may be in danger, they need to know.
Yes, keep talking to her. Tell her she is not alone. Tell her you are there to listen. You do not need to solve problems. I get that this may be scary for you (trust me, I know). Ask her if she is talking to someone about these things. Ask her explicitly if she has considered harming herself or her baby. If the answer is yes, ask if she has reported this to her provider. Encourage her to call the help line. If you are getting worried that she may harm herself or her child, call the police, the ER, 911. It is scary, but it is ok to act.
So Anon says
Based on your comment above, one more point. When you reach out to her partner or her providers, tell them what you are hearing with the detail of what she said, how she said it, etc. Reaching out and saying that you are worried is one thing, but reaching out and saying that she said she thought everyone would be better off without her and that she was not crying but said it in a matter of fact tone gives very different information.
When communicating with her husband, be specific in your description of the behaviors and statements you find worrisome. “Jane told me that she was afraid the government was watching her through the baby monitor” is more helpful than “Jane seems to have some delusions” and much more helpful than “Jane is saying weird things and I’m worried.”
If you know her husband well enough, you can be incredibly helpful by calling when she isn’t around to check on him and let him talk if he wants to. A spouse’s mental health crisis is extremely stressful and isolating. Mental health providers tend to treat the spouse extremely poorly–they may avoid communication, refuse to listen to information the spouse has and then later berate the spouse for not providing it, and treat the spouse like a cause of the problem. Her husband probably has to continue working full-time and maintain the appearance that nothing is wrong, and likely has no one or very few people around to support him. He may even feel like he’s going crazy himself because the whole experience is so surreal, and just hearing from someone else that what’s happening is indeed happening can help to ground him.
Thank you. These are all great and helpful suggestions. I really appreciate it. She hasn’t said anything about harming herself but I recognized her mood and the way and things she was talking about was not right or normal for her. I will try to better convey my concerns to her husband.
So Anon says
I agree with Anonymous @ 2:15 that this can be a very isolating and tough experience for the spouse. When you reach out to her husband, ask if you can convey this directly to one of her care providers. Her husband is likely her and her child’s primary care provider (even if there are other adults in the house), and so taking something off of his plate could be a huge relief. Also, information from a spouse is great for a provider, but hearing from more than one source directly can carry more gravity.
Can I just say this is a sad and scary situation for all involved, and you’re a good person and a good friend for helping.
I’m not sure what you mean by “sent a message to” her husband, but I suggest you schedule a phone call with him to talk in more detail. Maybe even offer a regular, standing, phone call if that would be helpful for him. Depending on what kind of delusions your friend is having, this could also avoid the chance of her seeing one of your messages and reacting badly to it.
did anybody else see the article on Sunday Riley’s settlement w/ the FTC for writing fake reviews on Sephora’s website for 2 yrs? I am always suspect of reviews I read…..I much prefer getting rec’s from women on this site!
recs. that apostrophe popped in there and it is bugging me.
Further reflections from salmon mom says
So I checked back on the second salmon mom post and I’m glad I did because of the comments about my contempt and tone. Husband and I are from different backgrounds, my family is not White and I am disabled in a noticeable and generally recognized by other people way while husband’s family is White; there’s no ability to relate to my disability or my kid having autism. I’ve never expected them to accommodate my physical disability (and they don’t) but I am not happy with how my son is treated (I guess we want better for our kids than we get for ourselves). Culturally it’s very bizarre for me the general failure to accommodate on any level, be it provide a chair my kid can actually sit on (they have barstool things), a plate that he can eat with without the risk of china/porcelain breaking (we bring our own and they comment on it every time and refuse to let us keep a plate there) etc. I have always felt that they are hoping the Autism will cure itself if they ignore it and putting up with this for the time before diagnosis and the time after has honestly emotionally bankrupted me. I am very tired.
I appreciate though that the vibe I am putting out is not helping anything. So I’ll try here but honestly everything from the moment we arrive at their house is like watching a horror movie for me. TBH I am very quiet at these dinners and watching my kid like a hawk (if nothing else there is a real risk he will wet himself since he refuses to go to the bathroom on his own at their house, the smart toilet scares him and he cant reach the sink).
Coach Laura says
Salmon mom, my heart breaks for both you and your son. I commented on your very first post that I think that your DH bears a lot of responsibility for the abuse of your son (yes, that’s what it is when you don’t feed your kid) and now, of you. I haven’t seen the other posts.
Given the cultural differences and they way you are treated, I don’t think your contempt is causing this or is making it worse. I don’t see contempt on your part. Your in-laws sound controlling and passive-aggressive and awful. And I agree I think the in-laws see autism as something wrong and hope that by avoiding it, it will go away or he will outgrow it. My twin nieces are also ASD and like I said, my sister and I go out of our way to be helpful to our nieces.
I hope you can find a way to get your husband on your side either through him getting a light-bulb moment or therapy. And I hope that it doesn’t damage your son to be exposed to them.