Ask EP: Biting and Sleeping Alone

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I need some advice on biting. My little guy is 11 months old and has 8 teeth that he loves to use. He bites everything. He bit the leather off our couch, he bites all of his toys, the rail on his crib, and most unfortunately people. He actually drew blood on my mom’s arm. People have started telling me that I need to bite him back which is absolutely not an option, but I could use some guidance from moms who have been there including what to say to those with negative recommendations! TIA!

Hi, are you offering him things that he *can* bite on? Sounds like he is teething & needs a bit of a hand finding something to help with the pain. Cold wet washcloths can be helpful as well as cold hard foods like icy poles, carrots etc I would also consider an amber teething necklace to relieve his symptoms a bit.

Regarding what to say to those who suggest biting him, you could always mention that he’s in pain and trying to alleviate it.  Guiding him gently will help him far more than biting him.  Further, how is biting him going to teach him not to bite?  It’s counter-intuitive!


Help! I have a 9 month dd who currently co-sleeps. We also have a 3 yr old who we let CIO until she fell asleep because that’s what my husband and in-laws said that’s what I had to do to get her to sleep on her own. I refuse to do that with my second but I don’t know how to get her out of our bed. However, something needs to happen because it is causing my husband and us to fight. I can usually get her to sleep in her own bed but it’s less than an hour before she is crying for me. Please help me get her to sleep without me!

Hi, what are you fighting about exactly? She is still so little at 9 months and is likely to be experiencing separation anxieties when you aren’t around. Can you put her cot next to your bed with one side removed? It may ease the transition for everyone. It’s normal for babies not to want to sleep alone, and she will learn to do it for longer as she grows. My concern is that you will be getting up & down all night & not getting much sleep, which will affect your husband (and you!) anyway…which is why I initially asked specifically what the issue is.

Follow Up: Well my husband has always said a master bed is just for a husband and wife. That is our time together. Which I understand and respect. But it is so much easier for everyone if she sleeps with me.  She does sleep in our room and I try to sooth her without up picking her up but that just seems to make her more mad.  At what point will those separation anxieties get better?

She is waking up probably hungry & needing to nurse for one reason or another, so she is trying to tell you that by the sound of it  If she is a bit closer to you & on a similar level surface, you could just roll over to nurse her & go back to sleep without barely noticing.

I can’t tell you when she will be happy to sleep alone, but it will naturally happen with time.
You may find these links useful:
I guess my honest perspective really is that she is little & needing you in this way for such a short time in the scheme of things, a temporary compromise for the sake of her needs being met seems quite reasonable. You’ll have many many years sharing the bed alone.
What are your instincts telling you to do?

Follow Up: My instincts are telling me to try and put her dins but not to force it. If she is crying then bring her back to bed. And try again later. My 3 yr old acts out terribly if she doesn’t get enough positive attention and I think it is because we let her CIO.

Dins? I would say that if she regularly cries then she’s just not ready and to wait a month and try again then – if you keep persisting night after night it may become a battle.  Also, here’s a piece I did on partner’s and bedsharing that may help a bit?

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