Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sleep Training

Whtitney loves her glow worm. It always makes her smile and calms her down when she is upset.

My little super sleeper is no longer a super sleeper. She used to sleep 9-11 hrs straight. I don't know if it is her age, or the traveling we did at Christmas along with the 3 week cold she had, but she doesn't sleep any more. She started waking up once to eat but she would immediately go back to sleep. These last few weeks she is waking more often, and it is harder to get her back down. She has to be completely out before we put her down and to do this takes FOREVER. I've tried crying it out, and I cave and go to her. The longest we made it was 80 minutes. I know I should have just kept going, but when I realized 80 minutes had gone by it about broke my heart and I had to go to her. We just had a four day weekend and Wade and I took turns putting her back to sleep. We decided to get her to sleep without nursing before we tried any sleep training. Let me just say, it was a mental and physical relief to have Wade help with her. For over eight months it has just been me nursing her back to sleep. Well, she proved to us that she could easily fall asleep without nursing, it was getting back to the crib that was the hard part.

Last night after I had been with her for an hour trying to get her back down, I decided sleep training had to start right then and there. I checked on her every 20 minutes to find her standing in her crib sobbing away. I did not pick her up, I would lay her down and pat her back. After almost two hours of this she finally stayed down when I laid her down and she quickly fell asleep in her crib with me patting her back. I know the goal here is to get them to sleep without you in the room, but I feel like we made some big progress last night with her falling asleep without us holding her. I suppose she just got so wiped out after standing there crying for two hours she had no choice but to sleep! Nap time today didn't go so well, I put her in her crib because I suspected she was sleepy but she cried and cried. Eventually I got her out figuring maybe she just wasn't sleepy yet, but when I nursed her she fell asleep so I put her down for her nap. If she falls asleep while nursing I'm not going to wake her up to put her back down, that would be counter productive. It's going to be a rough go, and I'm not really sure what I am doing. Any past experience or opinions are welcome. PLEASE share with me! I've read this is a difficult age to sleep train since they are learning separation anxiety, which she has figured out, and mentally and physically she is dramatically changing right now. When she stands in her crib I'm not sure she knows how to get back down. Are these sleep habits I need to nip in the bud or will she grow out of this?


  1. Oh no, sorry you are having such a rough time! I don't have any great advice either. BUT I can sympathize, a little. B went to bed at 8:30 last night, woke up at midnight, ate and went back to bed about 30 min later, then was up again at 5:00. I fed her and she fell asleep while I was holding her, but when I put her in bed...screamed! I just moved G into our room, and she did give in after about 20 minutes...so, we are going though it too, just not to the same degree as you guys.
    All I can say is hang in there, and PRAY for God to give you the grace and wisdom to get through it!!!

  2. Stef- 2 things. If she has had a cold and she cries only when you put her down, I would check with the doctor about ear infections. Or fluid behind the eardrum. Jackson was about 5 months when he started doing the same thing as Whitney and it turned out he had ear infections... no fever or anything. Got those taken care of and it really helped!

    Also, if you can have Wade put her down for bedtime for a week. Maybe that will get her out of the habit of eating. Jackson went through a growth spurt a couple of times that first year and he would no longer sleep through the night, but after a month or so, he went back to it.

    Hope it helps!! Good luck!

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