Megan wanted to know “How can I break my five-month-old's habit of wanting to be held constantly.”
Dr. Sue writes:
In the very first few months of life, you really want to hold that baby all the time, because you don't like to let a newborn cry.
Once they start to get a little older (four to six months) they are thinking, those frontal lobes start to work. So, you have to start slowly, slowly putting your baby down and letting them fuss for a few minutes, picking them up, re-consoling them, and putting them back down.
Patients will say to me “Dr. Sue that takes forever. It's easier just to hold them.” But I tell you, as a mommy and a doctor, it just gets worse if you don't start working on it. Little baby steps will be helpful. Calm your baby, lay them down, and walk out of the room. If they cry again, go back, re-calm them, and repeat the process.
I promise everyone that it does get better with time. Some babies come out and are easy to put down, and for others it takes a while to teach them to calm down.