Breezing through life and loving every moment…

Sleep Training…To Cry or Not to Cry?

on September 14, 2010

At four months two weeks, Maddy still needs to be held and rocked or nursed to sleep. It is much easier for bedtime at nights when after her last feed, she would just doze off and putting her down onto her crib hardly wakes her up. But for daytime naps, she would stir the moment I put her down or even if she doesn’t, she would stir after about thirty minutes. So most of the time I hold her during naps, or lie next to her and nurse her back to sleep; that way she would nap for at least an hour or more and wake up a happier baby.

I have been thinking, if she should be sleep-trained by now…whether I should stop the rocking and nursing and cuddling? Part of me feel that I should let her settle into her own sleeping pattern, and part of me wonder if I am ‘spoiling’ her and as she grows older she might never learn to self soothe?

Last night, I experimented a little with control-crying, when after putting Maddy down in her crib half asleep, she was not to be picked up even when she cried. I was only to calm her down by patting and reassurance. She yelled her head off for about 45 minutes on and off, after which I picked her up to calm her because she was crying too hard and she immediately fell asleep. I put her down onto her crib and she slept soundly after that, most probably from exhaustion. I have broken the most basic rule of control-crying sleep training :


Now, how could that sound wrong?? I don’t know…I have been obsessively going through baby and motherhood forums and there were no shortage of mothers who wrote ‘it was the best thing that happened to them.’ They wrote to persevere for a few weeks and it will pay off. By the end of it, it will result in a baby who would blissfully fall asleep on his/her own after being placed in the crib. And that would mean happier parents with longer uninterrupted sleep. They wrote that it would break your heart to hear the babies cry non stop for 2-3 hours initially sometimes but it will pay off!

Personally, I do not think that to let a baby cry – controlled or otherwise – is natural. I do admit that there were times when it took Maddy hours to fall asleep and I was so tempted to let her cry-it-out and she would fall asleep from exhaustion. But within minutes of listening to her cries, my heart told me that this was not right. Perhaps some babies would just whimper or just moan using this method…but Maddy would scream and get all tensed up that her whole body would be drenched in sweat! Could that be okay to be left to continue? My heart tells me ‘NO’.

Maddy is not a cry-baby…has never been. She is happy, giggly and smiley almost all day long with the slightest bit of fussiness whenever she gets too tired. She probably cries about a few minutes in a whole day or never at all. Doesn’t it sound so wrong that if I start control-crying, I would be the one to MAKE HER CRY?!

I think I am going to put any drastic sleep training off for now..not going to let her cry. So she needs to be cuddled, but it doesn’t take too long for her to fall asleep. It is keeping her from stirring which is the problem. Let me try my own methods first, and will update her progress here.


2 responses to “Sleep Training…To Cry or Not to Cry?

  1. Maranda says:

    Oh darling. Our little girls are the same age! I know you’ve told me before but when was your Maddy born? Daisy was born May 3rd. 🙂 Just my opinion… I HATE all of that sleep-training literature. I think it’s crazy. It’s so un-natural! Just the sound of it “sleep….training…” Training a baby to sleep? Teaching them? Do we teach them to eat? Do we teach them to pee?

    Daisy still falls asleep for naps and bedtime in my arms then I lay her down. I also always pick her up right when she crys (I’m really into attachment parenting) It’s a little more work but Daisy sleep 8-10 hours a night! And takes 1-2 hour naps durng the day and is completely calm when layed down. I think that security is good for her. I think that, eventually, she will be secure enough to fall asleep on her own without my help- becasue she’ll know that mommy is there and will be there if she needs me.

    Just my two cents!! 🙂

    • Quen says:

      Maddy was born on 30 April 🙂 just a few days before Daisy. Yes I totally agree with you. I read through some mothers’ experiences on the cry it out method and they made it sound so okay..babies crying for 2-3 hours??!! Looking at Maddy cry for a few minutes and looking at her expression, I KNEW it in my heart that that was NOT OKAY!
      I have long ago stop trusting baby books because Maddy has such a unique personality she doesnt do anything the books said she should LOL! But yes, she has showed that she developes at her own pace and I will just go along with that.

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