Let me first start off by stating that this is what worked for our baby and our family and by all means I am not saying this is something every child needs to do.
Okay, with that said, I can say this was probably the hardest thing Shane and I had to go through with Brielle. I mean this broke.our.heart when we had to hear our baby girl crying it out.
It was just after Brielle turned 4 months old, that Shane and I were looking at who was going to hold Brielle for the night and get less sleep. (We definitely did the one thing that all my nursing books, all the doctors say not to do–yes she was a co-sleeper for the first 4 months of her life. She was never a baby since birth who liked to be swaddled and put in the bed by herself. She would maybe sleep for 15 minutes and then start searching around for me, Shane, or my Mom–who helped us with her practically the first 3 months, to pick her up. I just couldn’t comprehend letting my baby cry and cry when I knew all she wanted was to sleep with one of us holding her and that would make her happy. ) That just meant that whoever was holding her got less and less sleep. I think we just realized that she was in control of the sleep that was going on in our house, and we had to get the control back.
That was the moment that I did immense research on the crying-it-out method. I found probably 10 different ways to slowly transition into it, and what it all came down was what was going to work for Brielle. The first night I remember so vividly, it was so hard and painful for Shane and I to hear our baby crying but it was SO worth it. We decided to conquer the night time and then gradually work our way into the naps during the day as well. What helped the most was getting a video monitor so we could see exactly what was going in when we closed the door. LOVE IT, to this day, that has been one of the best investments anyone could make in helping with this method.
Night 1: Once we put her to bed after a bath and books, every ten minutes one of us went in her room, patted her back, put her paci back in her mouth and put her back in her crib. We did this for ALMOST 2 hours until she finally gave in and went to bed. (she slept until 7am that next morning so that was the most sleep we had gotten in forever!) She definitely was not trying to give in and she did not want to lose control!
Night 2: We did the same thing but probably went into 10-15 minute stretches in between. It still took 1 1/2 hours to get to sleep, but we knew she would eventually be ok and go to sleep, and she did!
Night 3-7: The crying it out method was definitely working and getting down to about 15-30 minutes after we layed her down for bed and she would sleep about 10 hours throughout the night.
(This is when we thought this was a success and accepted the time that it took her to wind down and go to sleep.)
Then it was time to conquer the naps during the day. These were definitely a LOT easier then night time and she only took about a week to adjust to being put down awake and would cry for about 10-15 minutes and then go to sleep for 1-2 hours. At this time she was taking three naps during the day, which made it a LOT easier on everyone to get stuff done when she was napping instead of having to hold her the entire time, or trying to put her down on a flat surface without waking her up.
Since then, she is now 8 months old and goes to sleep during the day and at night without crying at ALL! I love how happy she is when she wakes up and talks to herself after getting 12 hours of sleep or getting a good 2 hour nap during the day. She still takes about a hour nap in the morning and a 2 hour nap in the afternoon. We have been so thankful she responded so well to this method, and would definitely do this again at the right time for our future children!
What Brielle needed to make this successful:
*2 loveys (she had to have one on each side of her crib for the longest)
*2 pacifiers (One being her Wubbanub which is the paci with the stuffed animal attached to it and to this day is STILL her go-to paci for nap and bed time)
* A mybaby sound machine with the rain noise and the light display that goes on top of the ceiling while she sleeps
*A Pink mesh bumper pad that is breathable and just keeps her arms from getting stuck in the sides of the crib
*A summer video camera (mostly for Shane and I to feel comfortable and make sure she was safe)
©2016 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All Rights Reserved.