Any new parent will tell you that one of the hardest things to adjust to with a baby is the whole not getting a remotely decent amount of sleep thing. Unless you are one of those one in a million people who wound up with a gem of a baby who slept through the night on day one, I'm sure you've struggled with what you should or should not do when your little one wakes up crying in the middle of the night.
Well, a new study conducted at Temple University in Philadelphia has concluded that letting your baby cry it out is the best plan to ensure that he or she learns how to self-soothe.
Um, that's all well and good -- but listening to your baby cry, moan, and wail for you in the middle of the night and not doing a darn thing about it is way, way easier said than done.
I can't help but wonder if any of the researchers involved are moms, because if they are, they should really know better than to tell us to just let our babies cry and go back to sleep and forget about it.
When my son was a baby, he was not a good sleeper. At all. Granted, he went to bed and fell asleep very easily each night, but he woke up crying at least once or twice until he was around 8 or 9 months old.
And after a few people urged me to let him cry it out with the promise of his waking up in the middle of the night being corrected in a day or two -- I finally did it. And it nearly broke my heart. I listened to him cry incessantly for a good 45 minutes before he finally gave up and fell asleep -- and I'm pretty sure I cried right along with him.
I felt like I'd abandoned him in some way, like he couldn't understand why I wasn't coming for him. And I just couldn't bear the thought of him feeling like I'd forgotten about him or didn't care, which is why the next night, I promptly went into his room when he woke up crying.
Instead of picking him up out of his crib, however, I simply went over and assured him that I was there, rubbed his head a little, gave him his pacifier, and not too long after that, he drifted back off to sleep. The process only took about five or ten minutes, and it was much less stressful than laying in my bed tossing and turning and listening to him cry, that's for sure.
To each his own, but for me, there's no way I'd do the crying it out thing if I had another baby. News flash -- babies cry in the middle of the night, because they're babies and that's what babies do. It's part of the deal, and instead of trying to find a magical one-size-fits-all solution, parents really just need to do whatever works best for them. Seriously, don't these researchers have anything better to analyze?
Have you ever let your baby cry it out?
January 5 at 12:36 PMNope
by BraeBaysMomJanuary 5 at 12:37 PMYes! Not with my first but my second will have nothing wrong just really tired if she cries longer tge 3mins I go to her but usually she just passes out
by YzmaRocksJanuary 5 at 12:48 PMI tried it for one....never again.
Nope. Never. It doesn't make sense biologically. The study showed best at teaching baby to self sooth. Hmmm...that doesn't mean there are no negative effects. It might be the quickest way to get a baby to learn to shut up....I don't think they are supposed to learn to shut up.
by mandapanda82January 5 at 12:51 PM
Yes-only thing that worked for my kids- well the first we did co sleep til 6 mos. then CIO. My new baby would not sleep with us- she's a very light sleeper. She wakes up so easily, she never falls asleep when we're out either.so, the only thing that worked for her was CIO!
by abraJanuary 5 at 1:00 PM
Sort of. Three of my kids needed to be taught how to sleep through the night, and I am uncomfortable with the traditional ferber style method of crying it out. Instead, I did a lot of research and found a rather obscure (at the time) method called compassionate cio which is now advocated by The Baby Whisperer. In Compassionate CIO method, you never allow the child to go past the first "protest" phase. Thereby never allowing your baby to feel abandoned or alone. When you notice the transition from the first to the second "despair" phase, you go back in, pick up your baby and calm them down. Only when they have calmed down completely, and you are sure that they are still clean and fed, do you lay them down again and leave the room. This routine has worked well for our family. What your saying is true though, cio in any form isn't about "just going back to sleep". If my baby is awake, there is no way I am able to sleep. I am awake, monitoring what is going on the whole time and it is so much work. Every one of our natural instincts is to run in a make it better for baby, but that isn't necessarily what is best for baby. Like everything else in this world, anything worthwhile is worth working for. Developing bad sleep habits not only will be harder for baby to break as they get older (ever tried training a willful toddler to sleep on their own when they have only ever coslept? I did ...YIKES!) but it makes it harder for the whole family to get a good nights rest. Allowing baby to set the sleep patterns for the whole family is unkind to everyone else.
I don't think CIO is something every parent should do, it is a lot of work and requires support from your spouse and self discipline and wisdom to do it well, but for us, it was the only method that kept the whole family's best interests as the top priority. I do, however, catch a lot of crap from strangers about my decision. I just learned to ignore it. When you are confident in your decision, people getting on their moral or philosophical high-horse doesn't really make a difference. It does, however, get old. So I probably won't check back on this thread. If someone is looking for support in practicing CCIO, they can message me and I can point them in the right direction. :-)