Cry-Babies...

Sunshine - posted on 04/07/2010 ( 36 moms have responded )

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So since I am sitting here listening to my son cry. I have done everything. From changing his diaper, feeding him, checking his temp, playing with him & all of the above I pick him up and he stops.. But this isn't just one time all he wants me to do is hold him.. So my QUESTION:

How long is it okay to let him/her cry?


I have read that letting them cry isn't good for them but then I have read other things sayin its good for them so it will help their lungs. Well I have no choice to let mine cry.. The longest I have let him cry was probably 30 minutes and it sounds mean to me but there wasn't anything else I can do.. I know he isn't sick or anything.

Alot of you are smart & have been through this a time or 2...:)

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Johnny - posted on 04/08/2010

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No one here thinks that you are a bad mother at all. You clearly care very much for your son to be asking this question. You wanted to know our opinions on how long to let a child cry, and you received the usual variety of answers. Some people think that you should never let a child just cry by themselves, some people think 5 or 10 minutes is fine, and a few will tell you to let them cry until they puke and pass out. There really are as many answers to this question as there are mothers. And really, we each think that we are right.


You clearly feel that it is necessary to leave a child to cry on their own for a while. You need to follow your gut instinct and do what you think is best for your son and for you when dealing with the PPD. You need to decide how much time you need to yourself when not holding him and how long you are comfortable listening to him cry. This is not really about what anyone else thinks.

Around 5 months, for many babies, the long crying periods do begin to wind down and they start being more easily soothed by people other than mom. Starting around his age, some children will respond well to being left to CIO for a time and will become independent youngsters. Others may feel abandoned and become needy. Just like how some kids who are held all the time will decide that they like it that way and will be spoiled & coddled, while others feel secure and able to explore their independence. I honestly think it depends on how their personalities react with your parenting style.

Kyle - posted on 04/07/2010

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Lisa- She NEVER said she WANTED to let him cry- "Why do you WANT to let him cry? Why not hold him if he needs it?" She said she doesn't feel she has a choice but to let him cry. And NO you do not ALWAYS have a choice. What if she does pick him up and he STILL is crying? then what? She has to let him CRY. It's not like she can tell him to be quiet and he will listen. Why don't you stop being judgmental and actually try to give some HELPFUL or SUPPORTIVE advice /:

Lyndsay - posted on 04/10/2010

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I think it depends partially on the age of the baby, and also on how you want to raise your child. I have always wanted my son to be independent, from the very beginning. I do think that its important to give your baby love and affection (especially when they're really small and unable to entertain themselves), but I also think its important to establish boundaries and personal space and have your children recognize that sometimes mommy needs to get things done. When my son was really small I would lay him on the floor for tummy time (which is good for them anyway) and try to clean up during that time. He wasn't a huge fan of it at first, but I would go like 10 minutes one day, 15 minutes the next, 20 the next, and so on.. until eventually he got used to it and it became part of his routine. Now he's 2 and a half and he has a very strong personality, he likes to do things for himself, and he doesn't require attention 24/7.

Jackie - posted on 04/09/2010

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I also want to reinforce that what Sally (and others have implied) said about how CIO kids cant' be independent is not true. My daughter has gone to sleep on her own since 4 mos of age, she always sleeps in her own bed, sleeps through the nite all the time (for 10-12 hours), she does not cry when I leave, she loves to be on the floor playing by herself.... Letting her fuss herself to sleep has certainly NOT created a clingy insecure child.

And with the PPD you certainly have another very strong reason why sometimes you prob. do need to let her cry. As Gillian said I think it was...you def. need to take care of yourself in the meantime, but also just understand what your limits are and that putting the baby down IS the best and safest option. Not implying you would do any harm, but you don't want your stress level to get to that breaking point either. I had a colicky baby so trust me, I know what the endless screaming can feel like...and I can't imagine having to deal with it if I had PPD.

Sally - posted on 04/08/2010

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Sunshine-

Holding your child will not turn him into a Mamas Boy. In fact, it is being proven that the more a child is held and comforted in the early years, the more secure and independent they are later on. Babies need to be held. A babies cry is his/her only way to tell you they need something. And yes, sometimes it is not convienent. Tough. He needs you. Give him time now and he will give it back to you later. Clingy kids are often the ones who don't get enough so they grab and whine for more. I promise it is better to fill the needs he has now then push him away. You cannot spoil a baby. Not possible.

This from a mom who held for as long a she wanted. And now at 3+ she is an independent little girl. The one who does not sleep in our bed, who wants to do it all herself, who knows Mom will always be there to help so she trys it all on her own first.

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Charlene - posted on 04/10/2010

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CIO = Cry it out. :)

I just wanted to say that yes, you may always have a choice, but sometimes that means you have to choose between letting baby cry for a moment or changing your pants because you wet yourself. I haven't wet myself since I was potty training so I think I'll choose letting my daughter sook for a minute. ;)



Do what you think is best. I don't think fussing for a moment or two is a big deal, IMHO.



Also, @ Kylie, I let my daughter chew on the rubber part of an empty tylenol bottle too. It's her favourite thing over any of her teething toys. =^/

Sunshine - posted on 04/10/2010

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@ Carol-Thanks yes.. My PPD isn't as bad as it used to be.. As long as I put him down in his crib or pack N Play for a couple minutes get my composure back then I am fine I go back & pick him up.. It gets hard when their are days like that cause I just wanna go crazy lol cause I wanna do everything I can to stop him but sometimes nothing will work so crying is something I have to do:( What is CIO?

@Gillian-Sad to say I haven't talked to no one bout PPD.. Cuz it isnt as bad as it was. I can handle it a lot better then other people can:) I don't always feel like that just when he has episodes of non stop crying that I cant handle even different people holding him don't work.. & thats why I put him down.. Cuz no matter what I do he cries.. :( He is better today & he was better yesterday so thats a pLUS.. I do BELIEVE it gets better everyone has told me this when he was younger he cried every day b/c of course you have to learn your child who they are and what their cries were well thanks to my BF she helped me learn that... So I am a lot better with him then ever we get to know each other every day:) :)

@Jackie-My son sleeps in his own room & own bed:) Since 2 months old.. But after that we get up in the morning he wants me to hold him.. I put him on the floor the ONLY way he will stay down there is if I am there so I have just learned to stay on the floor and play with him.. Just sometimes I need time for myself and go clean something.. lol:) PPD is def. NOT fun thats why I asked how long it is okay to let him cry. Cause when I have done everything I can to stop him from crying an it don't work I put him in his room for a lil but then go back once I have calmed down.. Cause I too wouldn't wanna do anything to hurt him which I don't believe I would lol...

@Kristin-I put him in a bouncer etc he will sit in there for so long but he has to have my full attention or he will start fussin..

I bought a bumbo & i will sit him on the floor & let him see what i am doin & he us content for sooo long.. He is in my arms right now tryna get the blue lights off my computer

Kristin - posted on 04/09/2010

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It up to you as to how long you let him cry. He just wants to be with you. You don't say how old he is. There could be a medical reason or just discomfort thing that's got him really needing the extra comforting; ear infection or teething.

When you can't hold him, have you tried out a bouncer, jumper, or swing? Each of these is age dependent, but you get the idea. He can be with you, but not on you. Just be sure that when he's in something that you are still talking and looking at him lots. My first was super clingy (static had nothing on him), and I spent a lot of time just hanging with him in arms, lap, snugli, whatever. I did let a lot of housekeeping stuff slide until his dad got home and the crockpot was my best friend then.

Lady - posted on 04/09/2010

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Really well said Carol.
Sunshine I hope you are getting some really good help with your PPD depression because it could well be something to do with haveing a whiny baby. Children will pick up on moods and he could just be reflecting yours right back at you.
You need to take care of yourself, you need to be healthy and truly believe you are doing the best you can. Putting him down for a while to take some deep breaths and to stop yourself from going mad is not going to harm him. Every new mum had a hard time of it and is unsure of what they are doing at times but it does get easier. The first child is deffinatley the hardest, with my first son it was sometimes a contest between me and him as to who was crying the loudest.
All 5 month old babies are mama's boys, in some ways my 11 year old still is - he's very much a right boy, football, scateboarding, mountain biking, hanging out with his mates and he has some cheek at the moment but he still likes his cuddles and is always happy when I come back if I go away which is really lovely. Like Carol said all children are different but I've never known one that was spoiled by too much love.
Don't worry too much about holding or not holding just do what you have to to get through this not so great time - no one is a super mum, no one can do everything just give youself a break and try not too stress.

Sunshine - posted on 04/08/2010

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@Teresa-He HATES anything cold in his mouth.. Not sure why but he cries & acts like I am gagging him, lol!

@Sally-I understand all that but you don't have to hold them all the time. I need time for my self sometimes.. I have PPD & I AM NOT AFRAID TO ADMIT IT... When he cries I do everything I can to STOP him but if nothing works I just lay him down & let him cry I JUST WANNA KNOW how long its okay to let him cry! Im not gonna sit & hold him if thats what he is gonna do is cry NO THANK YOU.. & he is a Mama's boy JUST from me holding him.. He never wants NO ONE but me.. I believe you can spoil a baby. A lot of people say that.. You can spoil a child when you hold them I strongly believe that and my son is just that.. & if I don't have to hold him I won't I am with him 24/7 there is a time where I need ME TIME.. We all do.. I don't care what anyone says I know I have a child & I take DAMN good care of him.. But I will be DAMNED if he wants me to hold him all the time I am sorry..
My son don't sleep with me AT ALL:) He is in his OWN room & OWN bed & he has been there since he was 2 months:) :) But he slept in his bassinet before..

You can also NOT hold your child & they can me independent I have a lot of friends who try to break their child from being held all the time & they do fine:) Majority of the day I have him.. Im not gonna sit & hold him when he cries.. No.. Sorry. If you may think I am a bad person which I don't believe I am..

I think I am doing a pretty good job.. Like I said I just wanted to know how long to let a child cry.. Im not like most people..

Sally - posted on 04/08/2010

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Carol-
Mine does the same thing when she fals or gets hurt. Does not want or need comfort. It has to be really bad for her to even let me look at it. And I too, was told you are going to spoil her, she'll never leave you alone if you don't put her down. Let her cry it out, it is good for her. Ha! The one I know who CIO, won't leave her parents bed and cries at the slightest bump. CIO does not work. And may hurt in the long run.

Johnny - posted on 04/08/2010

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I must agree with Sally, I always held my daughter when she was a little, whenever she needed it. I still do. Now she is an insanely independent 20 month old who rarely runs to mommy, even if she hurts herself . She'll cry a tiny bit, and before I can even get to her, she picks herself up, dusts herself off, and says, "all done" and just goes back to playing. When anyone leaves her, including mommy & daddy, she just waves and says "bye". Never any tears or grabbing onto the leg. She loves to play on her own. People warned me that by "coddling" my baby that I was going to get a "clingy" child. I'm very happy to say that was not the case at all.

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Hey, if it's teething I remember something that my girls LOVED.... knawing on the bottom of a closed, cold soda can. It was their favorite teething 'toy'. :) Worth a shot if you've got some unopened soda/juice/beer cans.

Sunshine - posted on 04/08/2010

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Well you can tell the difference in your childs cry I know I can and he certainly is NOT hurt, lol!! He even does this cough to get my attention lol

Emma - posted on 04/08/2010

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It all depends, when my kids where very little i would often be couch bound as there was nothing more to try than just holding them and i gave up on the bloody sling as all i got was back ache to match the head ache.
As they got older i would let them cry a bit on there own if i needed to do stuff
Now it depends on the cry if its the ill cry or hurt cry than they have my undivided attention if it the im throwing a huge tantrum then they must just cry

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I didn't let my baby cry until she was about 8 months. If you think he's cutting teeth you can give him baby tylenol.

Nikki - posted on 04/08/2010

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My daughter is the same at home, she is 5 months, she has only started it in the last month, before she started rolling she would play happily for 20 minutes without her toys, now it is a different story. So I either wear her in a sling or I have a little swing and I just move her from room to room as I clean and talk to her. It's just a phase before you now it they will be crawling and getting into everything!

Sunny - posted on 04/07/2010

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its my given name too lol, but for some reason fb wouldnt let me have it lol, (it was playing up that day so online im Sunny)
Im sunshine mary milne lol i love it :)

Good to hear he's asleep....

Mines 3 and still cries when i put him to bed lol

Sunshine - posted on 04/07/2010

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thanks ladies...
yes my name is Sunshine, lol funny thing its my birth given name:) :)

When he stops cryin i do pick him up then when he cries i put him down!

he finally is asleep now. he does do it a lot.. its just hard sometimes!
cant you tell im a first time momma lol

Sunny - posted on 04/07/2010

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oh wow lol i just realised your name is sunshine too! Ive never meet another sunshine! :)

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If you can get him to stop crying then I think it's best to hold him as much as possible. If he's screaming anyway then putting him down for a bit is FINE.



When my girls were 4-5 months old they got 'spoiled' by my ex's family coming to visit. It was great that they got held so much more, but then when the family left... they still wanted held. Well, 2 of them and only one of me (a very SMALL one of me at that too)..... I had no choice and had to 'break' my one daughter (the other was more adaptable w/ it) of being held all the time since it wasn't a physical possibility.



Then.... I became a single mom when my son was born. Not going to trust my then 6 year olds to hold a newborn unattended, so sometimes he HAD to cry. It was never for more than a few minutes at a time, but you have to do what you have to do to survive.



I hope he settles down more soon!!!

Sunny - posted on 04/07/2010

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My son was 4 1/2 months old when he was admitted to a sleep center. He would not sleep unless being rocked and even then it was for only 15 mins at a time. We were told and shown how to do controlled crying and it was in 40 min intervals. We went there more than 3 times for over a week at a time. All the professionals said there is no problem with controlled crying. It takes a few days but they do learn how to self settle. It seems harsh but sometimes it really is the best thing for mum and baby, and when done with the help of experienced professionals i dont see the problem. Its also not a matter of putting a baby in a cot and walking away while they scream, there is a process of feed, play, sleep and you slowly move from the cot to the other side of the room, to the door, to outside the door, talking so they know your there still and if they cry or grizzle for a while than thats ok, you just start the whole process again. Its not like she is going to let the baby scream till its blue and not breathing.

Sunshine - posted on 04/07/2010

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@Jackie- he is almost 5 months old in 6 days. I even asked my doctor about letting him cry & they said no limit its ok to let him cry.. Maybe b/c they know how old he is I HATE letting him cry but I DONT wanna hold him all the time it sucks;( Yeah & thats what I have done here lately I let him cry for a bit then look at him he will stop crying then I will pick him up!!:(

@Lisa-He is ALWAYS I mean ALWAYS in my hands.. No matter where I go what I do I am holding him I wnna put him down and do my own thing like clean while he plays etc but I can't the ONLY time I can do that is when he is asleep & then I can't be too loud he will wake up so I am stuck not being able too.. He likes the sling but he is heavy he starts to hurt my shoulders after awhile. & when I do hold him he starts crying don't matter what I do he cries so YES "I HAVE NO CHOICE!" :( :(


@Amy-Yeah I don't wanna get to that point in going crazy lol.. I would never hurt my son but man I wanna cry when he does this:( But now he will cry STOP look around & cry some more.. I don't know lol we just got back from the doctor. NOTHING. He isn't colicky doesn't have a fever or anything.

I think it may be teeth he does have 2 teeth at the bottom trying to cut but he isn't always like this.. I have given him a lot of stuff to chew on etc he doesnt like anything cold. I have teething tablets and tylenol none of that works lol..
Maybe I am just not gonna have no luck haha!
But like Ive said he does it while I hold him Im NOT gonna hold him while he cries.. I have got such a head ache cause its been all day!!!:( :(

Amy - posted on 04/07/2010

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How old is he? It could be teething and just wants the comfort. My son sometimes will fuss a bit when he just wants his way - to be held. But he's a year old and sometimes I just have to cook supper and he has to stay down so he doesn't lunge at the stove. how old and how often he does it will get you some better answers. :)

C. - posted on 04/07/2010

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First of all, how old is he? It isn't recommended that a child under the age of 6 months is left to cry it out, so if he's younger than that, please don't let him cry that long (I can understand long enough to run to the bathroom quickly, that's not what I mean). While crying IS good for their lungs, it is also bad for them if you let them cry too long (like when people say too much of a good thing isn't good).. Anyway, 10-15 minutes is the usual time frame in which to let them CIO (cry it out). You said the longest was 30 minutes.. I definitely wouldn't do that too often at all. I am not judging you or anything. I'll admit that I have let my son cry for about 30 minutes once or twice just around his first birthday, but I literally felt like I was going to crack from all the stress that was going on at the time, so it was either that or blow up at him.



But anyway, about 10-15 minutes is the limit. Just be persistent. Babies go through phases, sometimes they just want to be cuddled for a little bit- especially when they are teething. But just keep it up (if he's older than 6m) and he'll eventually learn how to go to sleep on his own or play by himself. Good luck!

Lady - posted on 04/07/2010

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Yes Lisa you have a choice, you can let the baby cry or you can lift them up and get nothing else done. Personally I have done almost everything while holding a crying baby from peeling potatoes to going to the toilet and so much else but there has always been some point when I have had to put them down because that's just life and as long as they are safe and not left for hours on end then it won't do them much harm once in a while.

Johnny - posted on 04/07/2010

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I've always chosen to hold my baby when she cried. When she got to be over a year, less so, but before that time, I believe that she needed my comforting. From my own research and reading, I do not believe that it is developmentally appropriate to leave a child under 6 months to cry on their own. But like Jackie said, it can be hard to put everything else on hold to do so. I solved this problem by using a baby carrier. Sometimes a sling, sometimes an Ergo, and sometimes a Moby Wrap. I was able to get things done while making sure she was getting the support she needed. My daughter had colic from 4-5 months, so she would cry even when held. But from what I have been able to understand, even if they are still crying, the presence of their caregiver does still provide soothing.

Amy - posted on 04/07/2010

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my son cried for over an hour at times. We tried everything and when you try everything you get frustrated, and it's better to let your son stay in there crib crying then to do something out of frustration (not that we ever really got to that point, but many parents do).

We also spent a lot of time working on getting to why he cried, he was colicky, and after a month or so we figured out it was me eating dairy that made him cry, I stopped and then he was happy (until we put him to bed). He's 2 and still crys when we put him to bed (but usually lasts like 5 min protest of not wanting to go to bed). He's very healthy and happy.

For us, holding our son made no difference, he was in pain and there was nothing we could do until the dairy was out of my system and his.

Jackie - posted on 04/07/2010

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Lisa you don't ALWAYS have a choice unless you have zero responsibility in your life other than your child...and many of us do not live that life of luxury.

Minnie - posted on 04/07/2010

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Why do you WANT to let him cry? Why not hold him if he needs it?



Many mothers find a sling or other baby carrier helps a ton with getting things done while comforting their little ones.



"Well I have no choice to let mine cry."



You ALWAYS have a choice. Crying in mother's comforting arms is magnitudes better than crying alone.

Jackie - posted on 04/07/2010

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How old is he? It is not healthy to let a child UNDER 6 mos cry....older than 6 mos is when you can begin CIO at night, so no reason why that wouldn't apply during the day too. If you are talking toddler there is a very good chance he has just created a habit of being attached and wants to get his way.



You could of course mention it to the pedi just to see what they say. But I would just try to help him find activities to entertain himself on the floor....so he learns to do fun things alone. It'll prob. take some time, but by constantly picking him up for the SOLE purpose of making him stop crying is going to just perpetuate the issue.

Kylie - posted on 04/07/2010

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Personally I think it depends on the age and personality of the baby. When my baby was young he cried alot. I never ever let him cry it out, as he was premature (13 weeks early) very low birth weight, and crying uses a lot of calories!



Sometimes babies just want to be held and cuddled and I think that's ok.



I ended up using a sling with Joseph and carried him around with me everywhere. And now he's a very independent 11 month old, who can entertain himself.



If he cries and wants cuddling I cuddle him.

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