Any parent of a new baby knows all too well the lack of sleep that comes with the territory. That is usually the first question people ask. How’s the sleeping going? Well, I have a one year old and did sleep training (my version), so here is my experience, in the hopes that you will be able to find some relief and get back to some good sleep! So for the down and dirty. The What, Why, When and How.
What is Sleep Training? Sleep training is really just teaching your baby to put themselves to sleep.
Why Sleep Train? So you can get your life back! Apart from your own physical and mental needs, babies need a lot of sleep. I know I was much nicer and more fun to be around when I got some sleep!!
When To Start Sleep Training? The experts suggest between 4-6 months babies are ready to sleep train. Again, this varies from child to child. By about 6 months though I had to do something. I was exhausted all the time and miserable.
How Do We Actually Sleep Train? The books tell us to follow a little bedtime routine, then put them down and keep checking back in 3-4 minute intervals. Really? C’mon, I just didn’t have the patience for that interval thing. What I actually did was put baby down, and I was outta there! I know baby is dry, tummy is full and baby needs his sleep...hardcore, wicked you say?? No man, I don’t think so.
You are teaching baby a very important lesson in his development. To calm themselves, and put themselves to sleep. Sure he resisted and resisted vigorously, but man I need a break and you need your sleep. Then I was supposed to do the same thing if he got up at night? Please...with the help of some earplugs after about 9/10 months he stopped waking up. Funny how that happens.
A friend of mine, Seema, a Mom of three shares some specifics on sleep training here. Something else that has really helped our family with the sleep training and just living with a baby in general is a schedule! I live by a schedule for baby’s meals and naps.
Schedule, Schedule Schedule! Babies like schedules and routine and parents need a schedule to remain sane. I need a road map for my day even on the weekends. It allows me to plan our time more effectively and as I said before, it allows for our awake time to be good play time with baby. So hey, bottom line, if you want your life back and to feel “normal” again, get these babies on a schedule. It’s amazing what sleep can do for a woman. I always said, these kiddies are coming into my world, so the sooner they get with MY program the better for us all.
You gotta do what sits well with your family dynamic. For our family dynamic, Mummy needs her sleep and everybody feels better!
What technique did you use to get your baby to sleep? I would love to know. Please share below in the comments. As you know in a few months this schedule will be off again and well be on to the next one!