crying to sleep

Sarah - posted on 06/18/2010 ( 110 moms have responded )

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my daughter is now 2 and a half mos old. bedtime is always a fight with her. we have had the same routine since day 1...starts out by taking a bath, rubbing on some lotion and dressing, taking her vitamin, nursing while i hum a lullaby or 2...and then she is usually asleep so i lay her down.

some nights she doesnt fall asleep while she nurses so i will rock her. this usually leads to a fight in which she cries and cries and cries...and nothing seems to soothe her. she will cry until she falls asleep. she wont take a pacifier (which is not something i wanna force anyways...not a habit i want to start) im just wondering what you do with ur little one.



also, if she is asleep and i lay her down she sleeps for a little bit (maybe 20mins) and will wake back up. im wondering what you guys do...how you handle this. do you pick them up and put them back to sleep? do you let them cry themselves back to sleep? do you nurse them back to sleep? i know for me the only way my girl goes back to sleep is if i let her nurse. thats pretty much the only way to get her to go down at night. not something i wanted to do but its pretty much what she decided. i tried it all and thats the only way she would have it. if i tried to anything else all she did was cry...until she fell asleep. i dont know if im just too soft and dont like her crying or if i feel its wrong to make her cry herself to sleep. idk...thats why im wondering what you all do.

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Karen - posted on 06/19/2010

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I nurse my 19mth old to sleep and co-sleep with her. She normally nurses down in about 20 min while I read and relax, then I either go to sleep early with her or get up and have some time to myself. It works pretty well (although we have gone through months where it didn't work quite as easily). When she wakes up at night I nurse her again and she's asleep again within minutes.
When my baby was your age we were co-sleeping and nursing to sleep as well. As soon as I learned how to nurse in a side-lying position my world brightened up. Although I've never been able to fall asleep while she's nursing, I can be almost asleep the whole time (sooooo much better than almost falling asleep and trying to hold my arms and head up when sitting up).
As far as your LO waking up after 20min ... my suggestion is if you nurse her down in your bed and then lay with her past that 20min mark (this time will shorten as she gets older), then she's more likely to stay asleep. And for those nights when she doesn't fall asleep like you expect, could you try something other than rocking. Maybe try standing up and swaying or patting and shushing.
Go with your mothering instincts and don't let your baby cry. Your mothering instincts are super important and you don't want to make yourself numb to them!

Sarah - posted on 06/19/2010

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If you feel cry it out is wrong DO NOT DO IT! You do not have to go against what you feel is right because it is more socially acceptable to CIO than to comfort your baby to sleep (which is VERY SAD IMO) You have those natural motherly instincts for a reason and there IS a reason why it feels so bad!!!!

There are numerous articles linking CIO to more stressful babies, babies with more stomach issues (it cases them to scream until they throw up!), emotional issues and attachment problems, anger issues and even SIDS.

I would continue rocking her and nursing her to sleep and eventually she will need to be nursed to sleep less and less, if you have to go a sleep training way I would do it gently with you still in the room.

I have a nearly 14 month old that I nursed to sleep for month and she is naturally getting so she does not need it anymore and can go and lay herself down and go take a nap when she is sleepy. I have never let her CIO and it has went great for us!

A great book is the NO-CRY SLEEP SOLUTION by Elizabeth Pantley. It deals with getting your baby to sleep with no tears shed and it WORKS!!!

A 2 month old has no idea where you are as they have no perception of 'there' so when you leave her alone in her crib you cease to exist. Take a moment to think about how scary that must be and how much she loves you and just wants your comforting presence. :)

Sally - posted on 06/24/2010

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Please forgive unfixed typos...my 10 month old is 'helping' me :)

Most of this is based on years of research I have done. If you just want my advice, skip ahead to the last paragraph.

Awww. A sweet baby snuggled in it's its crib dozing peacefully. Nothing could be more natural..

ACTUALLY, that scene was invented by scientists in the US after WWII. For a majority of human history and still in a majority of the world, babies are nursed to sleep by their moms. Then if it's daytime, mom puts them in a carrier and goes about her business; at night she lays down with them so she can nurse them back to sleep without losing any rest herself.

The only way to break thousands of years of human survival conditioning, is to teach your baby that 'From a point I choose at night until a point I choose in the morning, your needs no longer matter to me.' The baby will scream for hours because it belives that mom would help me if she could hear me. Mom will feel like she is jumping out of her skin because 60 years of social conditioning can't beat evolutionary survival homones. (Many moms and grandmas have admitted to sobbing outside their child's room for hours because the doctor told them not to spoil the baby, but every mom hormone in their body was screaming to go pick it up.)

The sleep training books tell us this teaches our children to be independant. The devolpmental specialists tell usthis causes emotional disorders and possibly minor brain damage.

Only you know what works best for your family. You will have to either get some earplugs and hope your willpower is stonger than your child's survival instincts or you will have to give up some adult evening activities and get funny looks from people who prefer the societal conditioning. (If you choose the latter, the honest grandmas will quietly confess they admire you and wish they had done the same--I hear it all the time at the grocery store.)

Read Ferber for sleep training and read Sears for attachment parenting. Decide which combination of those will work best for your family without worrying about what anyone else does in their family. If your family situation or your child's sleep habits change re-evaluate and if neccesary change your methods.

Good luck

Andrea - posted on 06/20/2010

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Your baby is VERY little. WAY too young to be left to cry herself to sleep. PLEASE give it more time. Letting an infant cry herself to sleep, especially such a little baby, is really not a good idea. She'll feel abandoned and scared, and when she finally goes to sleep after crying and crying for you, it's because she's exhausted and feels abandoned. I get that you're tired. There's not a mother on this forum that hasn't been through several sleepless nights, but really, this is what you signed up for when you decided to have a baby. All little babies fall asleep at the breast when they are that young. It's because they feel warm and secure and loved and relaxed. Is that really a bad thing? There are lots of other ways to help her self soothe that don't involve leaving her in a dark room to cry. The methods in the book The No Cry Sleep Solution work really well, but even in that book she outlines why any kind of sleep training is totally useless in a baby that's less than 4 months old. I don't want to preach at you, because I know that';s not what you wanted when you posted this question. It sounds like you are doing a great job. I just feel strongly about speaking against a really outdated sleep training method that I know is not good for infants.

Francesca - posted on 06/18/2010

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Those first few months are pretty tough. It will get easier. I promise.



Even people who believe in CIO will agree, your little one is far too young to do it. Ferber doesn't recommend it until at least 6 months.



Like you, I hate the idea. And have never let my daughter CIO, at least not intentionally. After the first five weeks of bad bedtimes, no sleep and cranky days, I did the unthinkable. I co-slept. I was orignally against it. But, my dad told me, just to lay down for a bit with her and nurse her. Insisted I would end up in the hospital if I didn't get any sleep. So I did it. And it work. We went from cranky zombies to happy family.



Of course, if this is something you are interested in, there are things you will have to do to make your bed safe for baby.



http://www.beststart.org/events/detail/b...



http://www.askdrsears.com/html/7/T071000...



http://www.nd.edu/~jmckenn1/lab/articles...



My 14 month old's bedtime routine consists of bath. Lotioning up and jammies on. Cuddles and some boobie. I lay with her for 20 minutes. And she is out. Then I go and do the laundry and tinker around the house; and join her later. (She still wakes up to feed again just before 1am and again at 5am and she goes right back to sleep without any effort. She sleeps for about 12 hours a night. And she has no problem going to the crib if hubby and I need a little privacy. :)



We can't do any songs. She gets too excited. Even for lullabies. So, thats apart of our wake up routine :)



But thats just what works best for our family. Its not for everyone.

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110 Comments

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Julie - posted on 06/30/2010

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Your baby is a little young to cry back to sleep imo. I didn't let either of my babies cry at that age and really never did until they were over a year and I was right there beside them. I also agree it's wrong to let them cry at this age. Nursing is still new so nurse as often as she asks for it. I for one miss nursing my babies to sleep as much. They grow up so fast! Also, there maybe something wrong like an ear infection or teething if she is fussy at bedtime. Don't forget to consider that as well!

Natalia - posted on 06/30/2010

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yeah i agree...especially with first child the intense need of the baby can be overwhelming especially in a culture where people are conditioned to go back to their "normal" lives asap. no way! you have a baby now...we were given breasts for a reason! use them, i say! my son never took or needed a pacifier and never has sucked his thumb nor clings to any objects of comfort...and i like it.

Luschka - posted on 06/30/2010

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I don't believe in crying to sleep at all - really, the way I see it, how can you expect my teenager to trust me if as a baby she couldn't depend on me? I think it's a phase though - my daughter went through it - I had to nurse, nurse, nurse. And just when we thought we were going to go crazy for lack of sleep, she changed and slept through the night, for a few weeks at least.

We found having her in bed with us (co-sleeping) made a huge difference to how much she sleeps and cuddles and so on. It's a stage - soon enough she won't need me at all :(

Lydia - posted on 06/30/2010

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also at this age around 3 months lots of babies simply cry in the evening for no obvious reason. they want to be near mommy.

Lydia - posted on 06/30/2010

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when she wakes up again, try to leave her in the bed. maybe put your hand on her tummy until she falls asleep... works with my daughter. be calm, speak calm, don't try to many things, that will just make her wake up more. maybe your bedtime is too early... so she is not tired enough to really fall asleep? i had that problem for a week. my daughter goes to sleep at 9:30 but for a while she was really getting fuzzy at around 7:00. so i tried to move her bedtime up, started the routine earlier. it didn't work, i would be busy 2-3 hours until she finally was asleep, so i went back to the old routine at 9:30, and oh surprise i am done in 20 minutes. she still gets fuzzy around 7:00 but i just carry her around for 15 minutes and she is happy again until it's bedtime.

Erika - posted on 06/29/2010

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sorry, i don't have time to read the other replies, but if she stops crying when you nurse her, that's all she needs. Either nurse her and lie her down in the crib after she's asleep for awhile, or learn to co-sleep. I co-slept with both of my children, and my son is now 8 mths old and has been sleeping somewhat well in his crib for the last month or so. Your daughter just wants the warmth of mommy and the comfort of you near. Certainly to be expected at her age and for a while longer.
Good luck and trust your mommy instincts! Don't listen to those who claim "my baby was sleeping thru the night when he was 4 wks old", etc. There's no competition going on, and babies, by design, were meant to be snuggled with their mommy.

Brenda - posted on 06/28/2010

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DO NOT let your baby "cry it out!" She is too young for that right now. I feel very strongly baout this because I've read into it. I too felt desperate like you with my first son and read about it. I recommned you read the book by Dr. Weissbluth called "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child." He is a pediatric sleep expert and who better to take advise from then him. If your baby girl will only go to sleep with you nursing her thats because its soothing for her and hence gets her to sleep. I let my 2-month old nurse whenever he wants and its never been a problem for me. I did this with my first son too and I feel it helped instead of added to the problem. Keep up the good work. I can tell you're a wonderful mommy just by how hard you've been working to figure your new baby out. Stay strong!

Diane - posted on 06/28/2010

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We have a 6 year old, a 3 year old and 10 month old twins and we co-sleep with our babies and I nurse them back to sleep when they wake up and we have never had the bedtime battle that I hear so much about. Even when our routine is disturbed all it really takes is a little extra nursing.

Natalia - posted on 06/27/2010

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hey great website! we are actually going to unschool our kids...and i am much into the less structured way...although for my son he does need some structure mixed in with flexibility...as in the article...he also didn't go for that "bullshit" and we didn't either. as i posted above he is now just turned two and he sleeps between 5 to 7 hours straight...and often is in bed through the night 9-10 hours average and he sleeps a couple hours straight for nap time...it's pretty great...no CIO, no crib...lots of snuggling... and a bond that i know will never be broken especially when he is a teen...again each family, person, belief system is unique and it has to work for all in the family...respect...last thought...i do think that all of the "advice" and "methods" are more about the adults and in efforts to "control" kids unfortuately

Natalia - posted on 06/27/2010

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i thought of something to add here...in case this is news to anyone...i re-read a midwifery book as i am expecting number two :) and she said that much stomach upset in newborns can be avoided if nursing mamas refrain from stroking their babies at the breast!!! imagine that! such a loving act ...but i get it...its way to stimulating for a newborn and excites them while they eat...leading to a likely cause/contribution to colic...hope that is helpful...she suggests just placing a hand on the baby's back and holding firmly without moving much...be well

Katrina - posted on 06/27/2010

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Thank you, Terra! That's an excellent article. What a lot of people don't seem to understand is that breastfeeding infants NEED to nurse every 2-4 hours. It really makes me sad to see so many people put their babies in a cold, dark room and let them cry. That must be terrifying at such a young age. :( Snuggling with our baby at night and allowing him to nurse whenever he needed/wanted to is what saved our sleep! I really have to question the motives and intelligence of any "doctor" who would suggest that a parent ignore their child's cries, regardless of what "type" of cry they *think* it is.

Michelle - posted on 06/26/2010

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Buy, borrow or find a copy of Tizzie Hall's 'save our Sleep' book. It has routines and advice for teaching babies how to self-settle. Around 2-3 months babies start sleeping in 30 minute sleep cycles and this is often when sleep problems start.

Tizzie doesn't recommend control crying and explains in the book the difference between a protest cry (which has breaks in the crying eg waa pause waa waaaa wa pause wa - as your baby falls asleep the breaks between protest cries will get longer) and an emotional cry or hungry cry which is a constant waa waa waa. You can ignore the protest cry as your baby learns to self-settle but never ignore the emotional or hungry cry. I found learning the difference in my childs cry the most important thing that gave me the strength to listen to her protests while she learnt to self-settle. I started teaching her to self-settle at 3 months and she is still a dream to put to bed at 22 months and still sleeping 11-12 hours at night.

Good luck

Carmen - posted on 06/26/2010

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Hello there. my little one is just over three months. I started a method with her when she just turned three months. Its a book called 'Save our Sleep-for babies' by Tizzy Hall and I found it fantastic. Have a read and see what you think. She has different routines for all ages so see what she has written for your little one. Take care and hope all goes well. Carmen

Courtney - posted on 06/26/2010

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oh honey I am currently nursing baby number four in five years and let me tell to follow your heart. I was so concerned about what everyone else was saying with my first two that I think i really missed out on some priceless moments. I not advocating that she sleeps next to your boob until she is a senior in high school,(LOL) but for now give her what she needs , her momma, her milk and mothers natures paci:) Just make sure that you are getting some alone time as some point during the day as that will make your time with her even sweeter. Have a teenager girl come to the house and watch her in her swing or bouncy seat while you take a shower more than five minutes, or take a much needed nap. Just enjoy her right now. Trust me my oldest is going to kindergarten in august and just seems like yesterday all I did was breastfeed her. I wish sometimes I could go back:)

Samantha - posted on 06/26/2010

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well at 2 and 1/2 months my little one did have a nummy for bed I never overly forced bed at that age she would wait till everyone else had gone to sleep ( she would be wide awak till about 10:00 atleast) then I would sit in glider chair with her laying on top of nursing pillow and her favourite blanket I would rock in glider for about 30 mins than go and lay her in her crib she would be out for a good two to three hours

Stephanie - posted on 06/26/2010

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It is ok for her to nurse to sleep. This is totally NORMAL. You might try wrapping her in a bundle so she wouln't feel unsecured and she can feel safe.
She has only been out of that warm, cuddly, safe place for a short time. Just think about it, you go to a party of a friends friends place and you don't know who people are, where the bathroom is you would be a littl nervous. It is the same for them. They are scared and can't wait to see, feel and hear the one person that makes you feel safe. They don't understand what it is ok just sleep in this dark room and nothing is going to scare you. She is telling you that something is wrong so it is ok to answer her with your love, hugs and kisses.

Meaghan - posted on 06/26/2010

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you can try using a baby wrap and wear her. It can help sooth her to sleep. You can then try to put her back wherever she sleeps. You wont spoil your baby by picking her up when she crys. Babies need us for comfort, they are not ready to do it by themselfs yet.

Katrina - posted on 06/26/2010

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Terra I want to read the news article you posted but the link isn't working for me, could you try again? I read similar research several years ago, I think it was specifically about Ezzo's book Baby Wise leading to clinical depression and failure to thrive in infants. I'd really love to read this one too though if you could repost the link. :) Thanks!

Katrina - posted on 06/26/2010

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I'm not sure why you're not comfortable with co-sleeping, but here are some alternatives if you're afraid of her falling off the bed, someone rolling onto her, etc. My husband is the most active sleeper in the world IMO and even he was always aware in his sleep that our baby was there. You can use of the cosleepers listed here on Amazon or even get a rail intended for a toddler bed and put it on the side of your bed so she can sleep between you and the rail. I urge you to consider it or give it a try, you might be surprised how much more rested you both feel!

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?u...

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Did you say your baby was 10 weeks old? There is no need for a night-time routine at this age. When she is so new she needs to be in your arms a lot - to feed and to sleep . A routine will emerge in time. She is not yet capable of what you (or someone else?) is expecting of her right now. It is absolutely right to let her nurse to sleep - then you rest for a while holding her and if she wakes you are right there - reassurance for her. When she is in a deep sleep put her down. Please, please don't let this become a power struggle between you and your precious baby - she is not insisting on her own way, she is operating out of a completely natural set of needs and when they are met she will be ready to move on to more mature sleep habits. hth. and Congratulations!

Wendy - posted on 06/26/2010

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I nurse my son whenever he wants and he goes to sleep when he is tired because it feels natural to me. It is more work for the mom to not be on a routine but it feels right to me to not force my son to do something just for my convenience.. I try to make my battles limited to the more important stuff like brushing teeth...hope that helps

Jennifer - posted on 06/26/2010

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My husband and I read the Co-sleeping book by James G. McKenna and also Connection Parenting by Pam Leo. The co-sleeping book is written from an anthorpological perspective. It basically talks about finding the right sleeping method that works for you and your family. Connection Parenting talks about every human (child or adult) needing human connection to thrive and survive. Our society seems to value individuality over everything else. However, my husband and I have found that in practicing Connection Parenting our son is extremely happy and has very few behavioral problems.

Katrina - posted on 06/25/2010

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I agree with most of the other respondents that your baby is WAY to young to just let her cry, if you insist on doing it at all. Personally I don't think it's ever a good idea. As others have stated your baby needs to know that you care about her, will meet her needs, and will be there to comfort her. My son slept in our bed until he was 2 1/2 and breastfed until he was 2. It was easier for us because I could nurse him throughout the night when he was new without having to wake up, get out of bed, walk down the hall (or even getting him out of his bassinet in our room was a huge challenge after a c-section), get him out of bed and take him somewhere to nurse, then try to sneak him back in bed and go back to bed myself - 45 mins to an hour later. MUCH easier to just pop a boob out and go back to sleep! Also many cases have been documented of infants around 6 months of age being diagnosed with clinical depression and failure to thrive due to not having their needs met. How sad.

I'm sure some will say that's a mistake to take her into your bed, you'll never get her out without a fight, etc. After 2 1/2 years of co-sleeping old my son transitioned just fine to a toddler bed in his own room with no trouble at all. He is confident that if he cries or has a need - even if that need is just that he is scared or lonely and wants to be held - that his need will be met. Dr. Sears has done research and found that co-sleeping has MANY benefits for both mother and baby, and you can read about it here: http://www.askdrsears.com/html/7/T071000...

To quote Dr. Sears, "There is no right or wrong place for baby to sleep. Wherever all family members sleep the best is the right arrangement for you. Remember, over half the world's population sleeps with their baby, and more and more parents in the U.S. are sharing sleep with their little one." Co-sleeping worked wonderfully for us, both with breastfeeding success AND getting a good night's sleep, and I wouldn't trade those midnight cuddles for anything in the world!

Good luck and I really hope you can figure out what will work for you and your daughter!

Heather - posted on 06/25/2010

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How much does your daughter sleep during the day? In my experience with my 1st son, he was getting too much sleep during the day, so he wasn't tired enough at night. I did nurse him to the point of sleep once we got nap times straightened out.

Also, do you have a mobile that plays soft music? That's been a life saver with both of my boys. Esp #2. He's 4 mo. now and I can put him down drowsy and he'll fall asleep within 10 minutes of watching his "friends" and talking to them. My 3 yr old still watches his little aquarium that we bought for him when he was a baby.

I wouldn't dare let my little ones cry it out that young...they are still building trust in you and need to know that you are there to respond to their needs.

Good luck!

Nicole - posted on 06/25/2010

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It sounds as though she may have a bit of colic, aka painful gas bubbles in the stomach, the nursing/breastfeeding comforts her and there is nothing wrong with that. I am a mother of four....and I never let any of my children "cry themselves" to sleep...it's just not natural to me. Let your instincts tell you what to do...and it seems they already are telling you the correct thing....nurse your baby, comfort her, that is how they learn to TRUST and love/be loved......I nursed all 4 of my children to sleep both at naps and at bedtime, I still nurse my youngest to sleep. My older three all go to sleep on their own now, so don't let anyone tell you that they will never sleep on their own....they will when they are ready, when they are more aware of what is going on....good luck to you....

Monica - posted on 06/25/2010

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my son always nursed to sleep, until he was over a year!! he's 4 now and he's great, a wonderful sleeper... If that's what your little girl likes, then why not?! she's still so young, and she cries for a reason... i don't think you're being too soft giving a two month old baby the comfort she needs!!! Sounds great, and it's an easy way for you to get her to sleep as well!!! Good luck, have fun!! If you don't want to do that, you can walk her up and down, take her for a walk, or rub her back and sing, but i think that the nursing is a great bonding and comforting thing for her, they say listen to the babies cues, and this is one of those times!!

Heidi - posted on 06/25/2010

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I'm going to be another NO on the CIO mama. Not only is CIO not good for babies in general, it is most certainly not for babies this young. Comfort your baby when she cries. It is so normal for a baby to wake frequently. Check out some of the links already posted - there is amazing info there.

Ivy - posted on 06/25/2010

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No CIO! Babies at this age often only sleep for short periods of time. You are just to comfort them they way they need. They cry for a reason and you have to figure it out. She might be needing more milk or has gas and needs to burp. Or just needs to wake up for a little bit before falling asleep for the night (4-6hrs is a night for a baby)

Try cuddling in your bed. Yes people think it is a bad habit but I did it with my girls and they go right back to their room with no problem later. Both my 14M and 3yrold sleep in a room together with no issues and we coslept with the first one for 12M and second 8M then they started sleeping together.
http://www.drmomma.org/2009/12/crying-it...
http://www.drmomma.org/2009/12/dangers-o...

Hannah - posted on 06/25/2010

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She's 2 months old! She doesn't get any of this. All she knows is the one safe place is abandoning her. Your mom now. This isn't about what's convenient or even right for you. This is about her. Your one and only job now is to make her safe and feel protected and by dumping her in a crib and walking away when she can barely communicate what she wants let alone understand what your doing is just selfish.

Ella - posted on 06/25/2010

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CIO has some very strong scientific evidence against it.
http://www.drmomma.org/2009/12/dangers-o...

http://www.drmomma.org/2009/12/crying-it...


Dr. Sears has some great input.
If your baby is only 2.5 months and wakes often- thats normal. baby's sleep cycles are very short- thats totally normal. I would recommend reading Dr. Wiesbluths or Dr Sears books on sleep.

If she is very colicky- she might have food allergies. It interferes with digestion and sleep. Try eliminating foods from your diet (diary, soy, wheat are some of the highest allergens).

Clare - posted on 06/25/2010

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Hi, my first was exactly the same. We couldn't bear to leave her crying so my husband and I took it in turns to rock her until she dozed off - sometimes for hours! Bedtime could take anything fron 2 to 4 hours, but we were happy that we were being there for her, supporting her and showing her love and patience. It wasn't her fault she needed a lot of comforting and soothing, thats just the way she is. Anyway, by 6 months she was happy and secure enough for us to be able to put her down drowsy and she would then sleep through the night but we did discover that she didn't like early nights, so we just kept her up with us till she was sleepy - often 8/9pm. She's 3 now and goes to be around 7pm no problems. I know its tough when you're exhausted and they just won't go to sleep, but it doesn't last forever - just think, in a few years time you'll miss this when they're out with their friends and you don't know where they are! Enjoy it whilst they need you. x

April - posted on 06/25/2010

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i still nurse my 18 month old boy down for all naps and as many times as he wishes throughout the night

Sandy - posted on 06/25/2010

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If she is going straight from nursing to sleep there is the possibility that she has wind. Would advise feeding, burping then a story with relaxing music. If she cries when you put her down pick her up give her a cuddle and put down again. If she is still crying when you pick her up chances are she needs a wee burp. Sometimes just talking to them helps e.g there there, sleepy time, mum's here or stroking her head or hand. She is a bit little for crying to sleep. I also used to keep a crinkly book in the bed and when she cried I would crinkle the book to distract her. Babies can only concentrate on two things at a time at this age and music and crinkling books should stop her crying.Good luck.

Amanda - posted on 06/24/2010

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My little girl is the same way! She only takes like little cap naps during the day and some days she will fight sleeping after noon. It is soo stressful sometimes! Sometimes she will not go to sleep for bedtime after I feed her and she starts to whine at the breast. So I sometimes take her for a walk right at sunset and this helps her relax so much that she usually falls asleep while for a walk or about 20 mins after we get back. Also, sometimes I sit on the couch while the tv is on, face her towards to tv and bounce her lightly and she will fall asleep in no time. I have tried the let her cry...and that DOES NOT work for her, she will keep crying and start to hyper ventilate so I feel so bad that I have to go and console her. Also if all else fails I do some baby yoga with her and move her legs around in a circle with a little mix up with a bicycle move every now and again and it makes her relax, the main tool is to let her relax and her body will take over and tell her brain to go to sleep.

Jennifer - posted on 06/24/2010

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2 1/2 months old is still quite young. Read this on normal infant sleep (http://www.kellymom.com/parenting/sleep/...). It's eye-opening and makes you rethink your expectations for sleep. I personally would never let a baby CIO. It is just unnatural and cruel, IMO. There are even studies that show it raises blood pressure and causes mistrust/hopelessness, etc.

I always nursed my son to sleep. If he was hungry or needed comfort, I wanted him to trust he'd receive it. He is now 5 months old rarely needs nursed to sleep. He will nurse and then I'll rock him. I personally enjoy this time with him. I do get exhausted at times, but I just reinvented my idea of sleep. My life is basically a series of naps now...lol...and I'm okay with that. It's not for everyone, and my son is still young yet.

I suggest looking into safe co-sleeping, especially since you're breastfeeding. In fact, MOST co-sleeping related deaths are of bottle-fed babies and by parents who were drinking/drugs. If we had a larger, less fluffy bed, we'd co-sleep. Breastfeeding mothers are proven to be more in tune with their babies and they get more sleep...even more if they co-sleep. Nursing while lying down was one of the best discoveries I made as a mom!

Sarah - posted on 06/24/2010

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thank you all for ur advice! it is appreciated.
a couple of things i wanna add:
-im not comfortable with co-sleeping.
-she decided she doesnt like being swaddled around 1mo old...she would try and wiggle her arms up and get mad she couldnt get them out. she likes to sleep with her arms up by her head.
-im not going to let her CIO...i was just asking opinions and experiences...im sorry if it seemed like thats what i was going for. i know she is FAR too young for that.
last but not least...i am sleep deprived but wouldnt change a thing for this is only the beginning and i know it will get better. im enjoying every minute of it because she will only be little once :D

Janelle - posted on 06/24/2010

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I would like to recommend a book called "Three in a Bed." It may help you feel better about the co-sleeping option.We have been a very happy co-sleeping family from day one. The CIO method seemed a lot like learned helplessness to me so I was never able to get on board with that theory. For those who may not know what learned helplessness is, here is a rough definition. When a beings needs (i.e. baby crying) goes unmet repeatedly, that being learns that its efforts are not worth continuing, thus it gives up. Doesn't sound too bad if you just think that the baby just gives up and quits crying, but the problem lies with the reason they quit crying, because they have learned that no matter how hard or long they cry, no one is going to answer anyway. This ultimately becomes a trust issue. I am not giving you this info to condemn anyone or convince you that my way is best, just to offer up a perspective that perhaps you can find useful. Good Luck! Sleep is so important and can certainly be a challenge. I hope all of you find a method that works for your family:)

Janelle - posted on 06/24/2010

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I would like to recommend a book called "Three in a Bed." It may help you feel better about the co-sleeping option.We have been a very happy co-sleeping family from day one. The CIO method seemed a lot like learned helplessness to me so I was never able to get on board with that theory. For those who may not know what learned helplessness is, here is a rough definition. When a beings needs (i.e. baby crying) goes unmet repeatedly, that being learns that its efforts are not worth continuing, thus it gives up. Doesn't sound too bad if you just think that the baby just gives up and quits crying, but the problem lies with the reason they quit crying, because they have learned that no matter how hard or long they cry, no one is going to answer anyway. This ultimately becomes a trust issue. I am not giving you this info to condemn anyone or convince you that my way is best, just to offer up a perspective that perhaps you can find useful. Good Luck! Sleep is so important and can certainly be a challenge. I hope all of you find a method that works for your family:)

Erica - posted on 06/24/2010

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Sally Backhaus wrote, "The sleep training books tell us this teaches our children to be independant. The devolpmental specialists tell usthis causes emotional disorders and possibly minor brain damage."

I think you should give your resources for this claim and more context. There are a lot of factors to explain the claim that leaving babies to cry can cause any sort of emotional disorders or brain damage.

Way to scare people! Boo!

Lauren - posted on 06/24/2010

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I have always breastfeed my daughter to sleep at night time. Partly because I am tired by this time and would like to have some 'me' time before I go to bed and start the routine again in the morning. My daughter is now 6months old and is able to settle herself to sleep in her cot during the day - its not a hard and fast rule though as teething etc can effect this. I went with a gentle teaching approach and figured that while she was crying she wasn't learning how to settle herself to sleep just how to exhaust herself to sleep. It did take time though - At two and a half months your daughter may just not be ready yet for this big step. Nurse her for a while if you thats what you want and then try again in a few weeks.

Addys - posted on 06/24/2010

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I have a different situation, my almost 3 month daughter starts crying and being fussy every night at 8-9pm. she sleeps 5-10 min and then again, all the way until 11pm that I give her a bath, then her milk and off to sleep, but then she sleeps all night until 6:30-7am. Having a routine to go to sleep every night I think is very important I didn't do it with my oldest but then again by 5 weeks she was sleeping all night, but this one does requires, not all kids are the same and what may work for one may not work for the other one. I do however let her cry from time to time because if she cries and then I pick her up she will realize that crying leads to holding and thats a bad thing specially when you have to leave them later on to go to work or run errands. change things around for your baby, put some music. My daughter knows that bathing leads to long sleeves whole body onec's and then milky and is when she drinks most of her bottle of milk.

Salime - posted on 06/24/2010

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I had the same problem with my now 4 month old. Fortunately, some friends gave me a book on how to make the baby sleep and now it's all happy times when my LO has to go to bed. 1. You should NEVER put baby to bed when he's asleep. ALWAYS get him/her in the crib when he's still awake. If not, imagine you're baby. You fall asleep in mom's arms and suddenly, like all of us, you wake up and find yourself in a completely different environment and, worst of all, mom is gone. 2. Get into a routine when you put him/her to bed. For example, tell him there's your little bunny and he's going to be with you. I love you, goodnight... or whatever words please you more, but try to say the same speech EVERY time (it gives the kids confidence). And 3. The first nights are going to be AWFUL but you must be strong. You make the little speech, put baby in crib and then leave the room. OBVIOUSLY the crying will start. You wait 2 minutes go in to his room and make the same speech again (keeping at ALL times your voice calm, don't let her notice you are nervous). You go out again (inmediately without even thinking of rocking her or taking her out of the crib/bed). You wait 3 more minutes and then again you go and repeat the same speech... you do it as many times as you need and go stretching the minutes you let her cry until you get to seven minutes. The first times are a nightmare listening to the LO cry her brains out... but believe, it's worth it. In a week or two you won't have any trouble... GOOD LUCK!

Lisa - posted on 06/24/2010

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"Heidi what about the deaths from co-sleeping, not from mothers rolling on their children but of the child snuggling in to close to their mothers, breathing in carbon deoxide and sufercating... i usto co sleep with my baby girl until a friend of the familys daughtor of 4 months never woke for her nightly feed and the mother tells it was because of her co sleeping....."

Grace--a mother's breath actually helps the baby sleep better, and when a baby is near the mother they have less sleep apnea. when it does occur the mother automatic takes a deeper breath where upon the baby then also takes a deep breath and starts breathing again.
babies can actually move their faces away--ever nurse a baby and get your boob too close to their nose? you hear a high pitched sucking in that doesn't work too well then a pop and the baby bounces it's head back and breaths loudly. I know cuz sometimes my babies had to do that. I've successfully co-slept with all four of my kids. but I only advocate it if you are a light sleeper. I am extremely aware of my kids while i sleep. I know the exact moment they get a fever, wet the bed, have a burp, or are hungry. I change diapers in bed with my eyes still shut, no nightlight. my baby either sleeps with his tummy to mine and back slightly arched so our faces aren't touching (I actually like fresh air, not already been breathed air), or he sleeps on his other side with his back up against my tummy. either way works. no face or back sleeping.
I have noticed recently when I lay him down to sleep at night if I get back up he wakes up too a little later, but if I stay with him he keeps sleeping---it's completely natural, so I just put him to bed in the bouncer until I'm ready to go to bed, then we do one last diaper change and a nursy and then off to sleep we go.

Lisa - posted on 06/24/2010

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so you nurse? what do you eat? if you eat chocolate or anything with caffeine, even decaffeinated drinks it will come through your milk and be upsetting and keeping your baby awake. So first off, check your diet. No caffeine at all!
secondly, use a bouncer--if you can't nurse your baby to sleep, then lay her down in a bouncer with a soft blanket under her and bounce it up and down gently with your foot. sing a song softly over and over. or use white noise at this age.
This is what I do--I sign, "hush a by, don't you cry, go to sleep little baby" over and over and over. now my son who is 6 months old, likes to pop off and look around while feeding so any noise will wake him right up. so I place him in the bouncer and start bouncing him and singing and he cries a little, looks at me and then turns his head into the blanket and closes his eyes. Sometimes he will be in the bouncer but will be crying like crazy cuz someone else is bouncing him, so I go over and start singing and he's instantly calm and goes to sleep. it's amazing!
when they are tiny newborns they love white noise, a loud fan, tv on fuzz, etc. they also love motion--I suggested a bouncer rather than a swing because they tend to get cold in a swing, and with a bouncer you can bounce them gently then slow it down then stop, but with rocking or swinging they feel it stop and start hollering as soon as it stops.
hope this helps!

Grace - posted on 06/24/2010

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Heidi what about the deaths from co-sleeping, not from mothers rolling on their children but of the child snuggling in to close to their mothers, breathing in carbon deoxide and sufercating... i usto co sleep with my baby girl until a friend of the familys daughtor of 4 months never woke for her nightly feed and the mother tells it was because of her co sleeping.....

[deleted account]

Crying it out is toxic for your baby. http://ecochildsplay.com/2010/04/23/cry-... It creates huge amounts of stress hormones in their little bodies.
You will only be in this stage of life for a very short time. Crying is the only way that a baby can tell you that they need something, when you ignore the crying, you are ignoring the communication. When you baby stops crying, it isn't that they feel confident - they have simply given up.
If you poll your friends with children, you will find that all babies want to nurse to sleep and lay down with their mothers. I don't understand why anyone has such a huge problem with it. And if all babies want to do it, I don't understand why it is perceived as bad or inappropriate - maybe it is just natural? I am glad that something so simple can comfort my son and usher him off to a good peaceful sleep. I have nursed him to bed since he was born and he sleeps with me. Despite a short colicky phase, we have peaceful evenings.

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