A while ago, Joseph went through a phase where he was not sleeping well at all. He was grumpy all day and just never seemed to get enough sleep.
I knew I had to bite a bullet and leave him a bit more to learn how to get to sleep on his own. I found the book Solve your childs sleep problem by Dr. Richard Ferber on Fishpond and bought it.
Dr. Ferber has an approach called progressive waiting. You put a child to bed and they cry. After 3 minutes or so, you go and and reassure them but leave them in their beds. You leave them for longer and longer periods until they put themselves to sleep. I started Dr. Ferber's system 3 weeks and 4 days ago. It has been a long 3 and a half weeks but today was our break through day. It is the first day that Joseph has been put into bed and not cried. He knows that he needs to put himself to sleep. I am still feeding him before each nap and before going to bed at night but he doesn't expect me to carry him around or rock him off to sleep anymore. Even though today was the first day that he didn't cry when I put him to bed, I had seen other improvements in him since starting it.
Firstly, he is a happier baby when he is awake. He use to be unhappy a lot and would cry a lot each day. I also decided right from the start that I wasn't going to feed him through the night anymore. He is over 10 months and doesn't need night time feeding. Since stopping the night time feed, his appetite has improved greatly and he wants to eat at meal times. There is also no more snacking at the breast. He feeds really well 4/5 times a day now.
Going through with leaving him was a hard thing to do but I am so glad we have a happier baby and that I don't feel so drained anymore.