So what do you do if your baby poops REALLY early every single morning? You want to get more sleep. I’ve been there. But baby has other plans. Poop plans.
Today we have a question from a reader in Arkansas:
Q: My 9 month old son doesn’t sleep through the night yet because he is still exclusively breastfed and needs at least one good meal during the night. Well somehow, as he has been learning to use the potty, he has also started waking up at 4:00-6:00 every morning to poop in the potty! It’s habitual! We are SO proud of him for making that a part of his regular daily pattern, and 6:00 is not terrible, but 4:30 wake ups for number two are not my favorite! Any idea how we can get him to shift his morning poo to a slightly later time? ~Jordan J., Camden, AK, USA
A: Hey Jordan! I just love how unique your question is.
My first son used to poop at 6:00am, on the dot, every single morning from months 2 to probably 11. Wasn’t bad, but wasn’t great. :)
My subsequent 4 other babies? They ALSO pooped at 5:30 or 6am every morning. And I always got them back to sleep (on the boob) through 6:30 or 7am, so that was also good.
But 4:30! I feel you...not fun at all!
That said, I am happy that you are at least getting the number twos in the potty consistently every morning!
And, it looks like you’re having a great time ECing….thanks for sending in this photo of your son ECing:
So, yes, back to your question. :)
Check in with all your daily and nighttime routines
I’m certain you’ve already done this, but it warrants a little looksie.
Check in with your bedtime routines, your own daytime and pre-bed and nighttime stress and emotional levels, what else your son is eating throughout the day.
What varies from day-to-day?
What stays the same?
What do you do on the day and night before the 4:30am poop?
What do you do on the day and night before the 6:00am poop?
Write it all down for a 7 day period to see if there is, indeed, any difference. And don’t get all anal about it. We’re just doing a little light research. ;o)
You could always experiment
See what happens if you comfort him and nonverbally ask him to wait (by returning everyone to sleep) at those 4:30am poop signaling times. He could very well just wait and wake up at 6.
It’s worth at least one try. You won’t screw up your EC rhythms by trying this just once.
Was it something you ate?...
It’s possible that something is moving through his system so quickly that he needs to poop a bit prematurely...before dawn!
See if there are any differences between your diet (which is his diet) on a daily or nightly basis...and see if tweaking your intake tweaks his output. ;)
There may not be anything but time that will shift this…
At 9 months old, you’re on the verge of some major changes. Crawling, walking, first words.
Trust that most things will at least gradually change…including this super-early-morning poop habit.
You could even just wait it out.
I KNOW that it will change! Within a few short months, perhaps.
That’s one thing I’ve learned from having 5 babies...things ALWAYS change, the good and bad, eventually.
Bottom line, keep the early-AM poop environment dark, no conversations, in a potty in the sleep room if possible, and get that baby back to sleep. This will change so quickly!
Thanks so much for your question, Jordan!
Everyone, please leave any comments of similar experiences, advice, or whatever…in the comments below.
Thanks! xx Andrea
PS - here’s the video version of this episode in case you prefer to YouTube it. ;)