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6 month Old Won’t Nap!!

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  • 6 month Old Won’t Nap!!

    Roughly 3 months ago I quit my job to babysit my boyfriend’s 2 nieces (7/5) and nephew (almost 4) for his sister because she’s recently split and needed the help, plus her current babysitter had too many kids and did not care for her kids very well.
    When I quit, I opened up to take in a few other kids. I watch a 7 year old boy occasionally, but The only one I watch consistently (3-5 days a week) is a 6 month old boy. I’ve watched him since he was 3 months old. When I first got him, he only liked being held. He didn’t want to have tummy time, or back time, or toys. Had a issue napping, but I assumed it was from my nieces and nephew. However, their mom lost her job and car so I haven’t been watching them for a month, and I won’t until she can get a new job. The problem is the 6mo baby won’t sleep. If his mom drops him off and he’s asleep, she leaves him in his seat and he’ll nap for a full hour-2hours. He’s better at playing by himself and not needing held all the time, but after that initial nap he won’t nap again unless I hold him the whole time. He’ll eat, get a clean but, he’ll be rubbing his eyes and getting drowsy, and the second I pick him up and hold him he starts to fall asleep. But the second I lay him down he cries and won’t stop. Doesn’t matter if it’s in a bed with pillows to keep him from rolling, a play pin, the couch, unless it’s in my arms he won’t sleep for more than 30 minutes. He’ll still be obviously tired and will fall back asleep when I pick him up, but the second I put him down or 5 minutes after I put him down he’s back up.
    His mom cosleeps and says when he fusses at night she gives him a bottle, so I feel like this has to be a big part, but even when I lay down with him until he falls asleep he feels when I wake up.
    I’m scared that when I start watching my nieces and nephews again, or when I have the 7yo boy this weekend it will be even worse or the other kids will be missing out on time I should be giving them while the baby is napping because I’ll be holding the baby his entire naps. I’m at a loss at this point what to do

  • #2
    And to add-he does not self soothe well at all. When he’s napping, I’ll see his arms jolt and if he still has his paci in his mouth he’ll suck on it for a second and not wake up. But if he actually wakes up in the slightest or tries to reach to grab your face or hand and can’t find it, he cries. Seems like sometimes he doesn’t even wake up, it’s like he just cries in his sleep because he can sense/feel you’re not holding him.

    Comment


    • #3
      That’s tough to deal with! Have you tried a sleep sack?

      I also wanted to point out how dangerous it is to let a baby nap in a car seat, when not actually riding in a vehicle. Please don’t allow that!

      Comment


      • INnewbie
        INnewbie commented
        Editing a comment
        I very much dislike that she leaves him in the seat, but taking him out he instantly wakes up and there is no getting him back down-then he ends up refusing all other naps, even if he’s held. I’ve tried taking him out and moving him before ):
        I have not, I’m not sure if his mom has any. He typically likes being swaddled, but he doesn’t like his arms being swaddled in because he likes to move them around up to his face or to grab the person rocking him.

    • #4
      Originally posted by Rockgirl View Post
      That’s tough to deal with! Have you tried a sleep sack?

      I also wanted to point out how dangerous it is to let a baby nap in a car seat, when not actually riding in a vehicle. Please don’t allow that!
      …and napping with pillows
      Babies under 12 months need to be laid on their backs without pillows or blankets (unless it’s a wearable blanket/sleep sack) on a firm mattress in an approved crib or PNP

      Anything else and you’re liable for anything bad that could happen

      other threads about sleep issues
      https://www.daycare.com/forum/tags.php?tag=nap+issues

      Comment


      • INnewbie
        INnewbie commented
        Editing a comment
        I only lay the pillows towards the edges of the bed so he doesn’t roll to the edge and fall off. He rarely rolls close enough to the pillows to be an issue. But he can and does move his face if he puts something in his face and can’t breath. Like I said-his mom cosleeps

    • #5
      A previous post on a 6 month old that won’t sleep: https://www.daycare.com/forum/showthread.php?t=81709

      Comment


      • #6
        If you’re committed to caring for this baby, he absolutely needs a crib. Placing him on a bed is extremely dangerous, with or without pillows. Allowing him to sleep anywhere except for an approved crib is dangerous.

        Comment


        • #7
          He needs to be in a crib. No bed. No car seat. If he wakes up when you take him out, oh well. Morning nap won’t be long after. It’s not worth risking that baby dying from unsafe sleep practices.

          This is what I do.

          I use a sleep sack or swaddle. Then Google wake times for 6 month olds and follow that chart. It’s always worked for me for the most part. Lets you know about how long they can stay awake between naps. So when you’re getting close to that time and you see he’s getting tired, and he’s full, lay him down on his back in a safe place and let him fuss. You can do 5 min checks and pat him or talk to him, but he will catch on. I gage the fussing. If it’s screaming like they are dying, I wait 5 to 10 min and see if they calm down. Most do. If they don’t, I’ll hold and rock an few seconds and lay them back down and wait another 5 to 10 min and see if they calm down. The key is putting them down at the right time and when you know they’re tired. That’s where the chart has always come handy for me. They usually will just fuss and just protest wimper and then pass out. After a week you have a great napper. Usually. If they’re reflexes that they can’t control yet are still pretty bad at 6 months, it makes it harder. You might have better luck waiting to 7 months. This varies on the baby.

          The only way to break the habits of them being held or rocked to sleep is to just not do it. They will learn to self soothe. Controversial statement, don’t care. Lol

          These ages are easier to me. You mold them perfectly into your schedule and you can make an amazing napper.

          Comment


          • INnewbie
            INnewbie commented
            Editing a comment
            I’ve been trying so hard to just let him CIO but he’ll cry for and hour or 2 (with me checking on him) but nothing seems to help

        • #8
          I’m in your state, too!

          While I’m sure you’re legally unlicensed, just like I am, make sure the infant is in a pack ‘n play or a crib. Even if he comes in sleeping. No matter what the parent says, you’re still liable if there was an accident. The parent can (and likely will) come after you legally if there is an accident. Personally, I don’t enroll infants.

          What else is mom and dad doing at home besides co-sleeping and feeding him a bottle when he wakes? Is he constantly being held by mom or dad? Is there any independent play time at home? Is he rocked to sleep, patted on the butt, swaddled? At six months, could the child be at growth leap and fighting sleep?

          Try the swaddle idea. The parents should provide one for you. Remember, we are not allowed to swaddle the infant’s arms in our state.

          In our state, children must be in sight OR sound at all times, so you can use a baby monitor. After a clean diaper and a bottle, swaddle him, place him in a separate room (in a PNP or crib,) turn on a baby monitor and walk out. Go in and check on him every 5-10 mins like flyingjewels suggested and walk out. Advise the parents to do the same, as it is their responsibly to prepare the child for daycare. Consistency is key.

          I Google how long a child should sleep at every age, too.

          Comment


          • INnewbie
            INnewbie commented
            Editing a comment
            Yep legally unlicensed! I have no problem moving him out of his seat and into the right spot. I just can’t get him down for naps. He screams and screams for an hour-2hours (i check on him consistently) until I finally give up and hold him until he sleeps. Mom is a young, single momma so she won’t stop cosleeping. I’ve mentioned to he that he has a hard time napping and her response is always “wow that’s crazy cause he sleeps through the dogs barking at home” or repeating that she cosleeps and feeds when he fusses but that’s it, never any other helpful tips. Otherwise, he’s a very happy baby besides wanting to be held more than other babies I’ve dealt with, so I feel so bad he has such a hard time napping without being held

        • #9
          I should add that when I said swaddle, I meant arms out. I just use it like a sleep sack. Makes them feel more secure I feel like. When and if I swaddle with their arms, it’s when they are 8 to 12 weeks old going through that screaming developmental leap that’s terrible. Lol. But I’m always with them. I don’t leave babies that little out of my sight. My state may not allow it now. It has been 4 years now since I’ve had an infant.

          Comment


          • INnewbie
            INnewbie commented
            Editing a comment
            DCM never brings me any swaddle blankets (I’ve only seen the same 2 blankets so I don’t think she has any) but one she usually sends is very thin so I’ve been using that to try and swaddle him with arms out. Been faster for him to fall asleep doing it, but it hasn’t helped him stay asleep, especially when I put him down

        • #10
          INnewbie Now I understand better. You’ve been doing these things and there’s been no improvement.

          I was in your situation when I first opened two years ago. If I wasn’t holding DCG (also 6 months) she would scream. It was the worst scream/cry I’d ever heard! Like you, I went to the internet for suggestions and I found this Forum.

          Here’s the biggest takeaway I got from this forum: It’s the parents responsibility to prepare the infant for daycare. If you have tried everything you possibly can with no improvement and the mother isn’t doing anything to help the situation, then you need to terminate services. It’s not fair to you or the other children in your daycare to listen to this all day. It’s also poses a safety issue for the other children because you’re devoting yourself to focus on and care for one child all day long. It’s unfair.

          In my case (very similar to yours) the mother was a single parent, living at home with her parents. DCG was the first grandchild and great grandchild… so if mom wasn’t holding her, someone else was. I can’t tell you how many times I heard, “we have a lot of hands at home to pass her around!” 🙄 I asked one day how DCM could take a shower without her screaming - she said she put her in front of an iPad with cartoons. 🙄

          After trying all the suggestions from this Forum, I finally told the mother that DCG needed one-on-one care and I couldn’t provide that for her.

          It was truly the best decision I ever made for myself, my DCK and my business. I’ve since stopped enrolling infants entirely and enroll children from 18 months to 5 years.
          Last edited by GirlMomma; 1 week ago.

          Comment


          • Rockgirl
            Rockgirl commented
            Editing a comment
            This 100%. I had to do the same with a screaming baby. It was affecting everyone here.

          • INnewbie
            INnewbie commented
            Editing a comment
            Thankfully for him, as of right now he’s getting one-on-one care with me. DCB is the only one I watch right now with my SIL being out of work, or if I have one of my occasional kiddos it’s usually on a day I don’t have him. I really don’t want to terminate since he’s my most consistent kiddo, so I’ve been relying on my weekly pay from DCM, but I’m really frustrated because I know this can’t go on when I start watch SIL’s kids again. Gonna check with DCM again today on if there’s anything she does for naps at home that I’m missing, and if things don’t change soon I may just have to term and figure something else out until SIL’s kids are back in my care

          • GirlMomma
            GirlMomma commented
            Editing a comment
            INnewbie maybe give her a warning/plan of action. If you don’t see improvement in two weeks, then you’ll term. That’s whipped some of my parents into shape real fast.

            Advertise on Fb that you have an opening. My SIL just started her own daycare business and filled up pretty quickly. When I opened, I was full within two weeks. Good luck!! 💕

        • #11
          1 week update:
          DCM finally brought me back a playpen, but it’s a different one and wayyyy lower, so I’m back to trying to get him use to it again. Talked to DCM and made it clear that he’s having issues napping here and when I asked her what she does at home she said “I usually just hold him, but if I lay him down I just give him one of his stuffed animals on top so he feels something” DCB falling asleep on his own after about an hour/hour and a half of crying and checking on him, but he won’t stay asleep. He cries for a while, then falls quiet like he’s asleep for a few minutes, then repeats. Hoping sticking with it for a few more weeks helps. I only have him every other weekend and 3 days a week, so I’m hoping DCM is following thru or having her sister follow thru when she has him. DCM’s sister has 2 others and is pregnant with a 3rd so I’m hoping she stresses to DCM how important it is to help get him use to sleeping on his own without being held

          Comment


          • INnewbie
            INnewbie commented
            Editing a comment
            He’s currently laying in the play pen asleep, but crying. Even when I go up to it, put his paci in his mouth, he’ll stop crying for a few, keep his eyes closed, and slow down his breathing. Then it’s like he realizes he’s aslee and cries, or he’s crying in his sleep

          • Annalee
            Annalee commented
            Editing a comment
            sounds like the product of co-sleeping with parents.

          • INnewbie
            INnewbie commented
            Editing a comment
            Annalee yeah DCM said she usually holds him for naps and always cosleeps at night and just gives him a bottle if he fusses. Says he eats 20 oz a night (didn’t give specific times, I’m assuming she means 9p-5a or sooner? Idk explains why I struggle to get him to eat half a 6oz bottle every 4/5 hours when she wants him to eat a whole 6oz bottle every 6 hours

        • #12
          Ugh! I am so sorry you are dealing with this. It sounds so awfully stressful. It's sad for the baby as well as he is simply resisting anything other than what he is being taught at home. I understand working parents and needing to sleep but this mom is setting her child up for all sorts of future issues in whatever care situation he is in.

          It's so important for her to understand SAFE sleep as well as QUALITY sleep and she isn't doing that from what baby is showing you.

          I would try to learn and gather as much info you can about safe sleep and quality sleep and try sharing with mom. Maybe just, maybe she will get on board with what needs to be done for not only the safety of baby but for the sanity of you and anyone else that cares for him

          ((hugs)) Good for you for reaching out to others and trying to find a solution.
          Sleep issues are by far THE hardest to deal with when caring for children in my opinion.

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