Since my daughter was born she has never slept through the night. She woke anywhere between two to six times, took short naps throughout the day and just seemed tired all of the time. Team that with my exhaustion and we had no choice but to ‘sleep train’.
As an avid Googler about most things I’d like to think I have done my fair share of research around the topic of how to get your baby to sleep, and we tried co-sleeping, putting down sleepy but awake, the shush-pat method, the pick-up/put-down method before landing on the most controversial sleep-training method of them all.
Cry it out or controlled crying. Neither term I am a particular fan of, as it just seems so harsh. Before reading about controlled crying I was under the impression that you just left your child to cry and they eventually went to sleep. This is not the case.
You can adapt this method in various ways to suit your comfort level but in every variation of this method your baby will, inevitably, cry quite drastically. But eventually they will learn to fall asleep on their own and stay asleep. Ideal!
Before my daughter was born, and in the first few months of her life I told myself, and everyone who questioned her sleeping, that I would never let her cry it out but I was reaching breaking point and I knew the exhaustion was getting the better of me. I am also not afraid to admit that I wanted time off.
She is almost 10 months old and I have never spent any time away from her. I strongly believe that mums should be able to spend some time away from their baby and should do what ever they need to for that to happen.
Since using controlled crying she is able to settle herself to sleep and re-settle herself throughout the night. She still wakes twice to feed but I can manage that. Her daytime naps have also exceeded my expectations. She has gone from having three or four catnaps to having a solid one and a half to two hour nap in the morning and 45 minutes in the afternoon. A win all round in my eyes.
This method may be controversial and it may not work for every baby but I do believe that it’s the best for our situation and has worked wonders for us. She wakes up refreshed and is so much happier in herself. And as for me, well I am like a new woman.
Yes, this method may not be for everyone and yes other mums may not think highly of my choices but that’s ok – I made the best decision for my family and me.
Zoe was selected as a BISS guest blogger after entering our December linky. For your chance to write for GoodtoKnow, check out our Because I Said So platform.