Leila Petit



Inconsolable, incomprehensible crying at night, what’s going on ?
Dealing with baby’s first few months of crying is not always easy.
Mathilde confides about her difficulties in accepting and understanding her baby’s crying.  


“After an ideal pregnancy, Leo finally points his nose. It’s my first baby and despite my apprehension, everything is going great. The 4 days I spent in the maternity ward allowed me to get to know her, rest and receive a lot of advice from the midwives. Rhythm of feedings and sleep, gestures for the toilet… I’m ready to go home and face our new life.”

The first weeks go by without a hitch. My baby is calm, he drinks his bottle slowly and according to the quantities indicated for his age, he gains weight, he sleeps a lot. We are thrilled to see his first smiles. It’s calm before the storm !

When Leo was 2 months old, he started crying a lot at night. These episodes settled and turned into long periods of crying until a late hour. We were all lacking sleep.

Every night, for many weeks, Leo seems to be in pain, his face turning red, his fists clenched, his forehead wrinkled… Only the hug and the pacifier sometimes manage to calm him down.

I was asking myself 1,000 questions. Is it hunger ? A priori no, crying happens shortly after feeding. Does he suffer from digestive discomfort then ? I made sure that he never had his diaper dirty, that he never got too hot or too cold, that his clothes were not too tight. Is it fear ? I did not understand where such concern could come from…

Convinced he was in pain, I was very anxious. The pediatrician was not worried, Leo suffered neither from reflux, nor constipation, nor intolerance to milk… There was nothing serious. He had no disease. It was going to pass, he told me.

Despite the reassuring words about Leo’s health, I feel helpless and exhausted. I feared the arrival of the evening because I could no longer bear his tears. Not feeling able to endure such a trial, I wondered about my love for him, I wonder if I can become a good mother.

I just needed to be told what Leo’s crying meant and when it would stop. I needed to understand. Today Leo’s crying has stopped and everything is back to normal.

Recently, I discovered an interesting approach to decode a baby’s crying. This method developed by Priscilla Dunstan would have helped me a lot at the time and should be able to help many parents.

We can learn for example that the sound “Nèh” means “I’m hungry” in the newborn or that from 6 months, the baby complains of having gas in his stomach by saying “Eèrh”.


Here is an overview of this method :