It’s late, my Little Man is sleeping and the house is so quiet now – I’m loving it!
But not by the means of everything…
I would like to share with you my experience of making my baby go to sleep. As easy as it sounds, it’s not!
When our Little Man was born our world turned upside down and we kind of didn’t really look at the time so our baby usually ended up going to sleep at midnight – ooops. He had some colic problems so we really didn’t even have the time to look at the clock. All you want is to see your baby snug and calm again and you try everything to make it happen. But as we all know, the beginnings are always difficult so after a couple of weeks we decided we were ready to make our Little Man go to sleep at 8pm. Things went well and he very quickly got used to his new sleep time, I would just feed him and lay him in his cot short before 8pm and after about 10minutes of looking and listening to his bed – carousel, our Little Man would fall asleep. Amazing! At that time he used to sleep throughout the whole night till about 6am, waking up only once around midnight. NICE!
But then came the first lactation-crisis. Our Little Man was about 3-4 weeks old and it lasted 3 day. He needed to produce more milk for himself so he would wake up milions of times during the night without letting me put him back to his cot. Oh joy. I decided to take him to our bed, he slept with me, „plugged” to my breast. He was happy again and slept like an angel, I slept a tiny bit more than the first shocking night of the crisis because I was scared I would block his airflow somehow but still, that was much better than getting up those milion times and getting no sleep at all. This state lasted about three days and things quickly went back to normal. The next bigger lacta-crisis came a few weeks later – the same situation and back to normal again. Then, when our Little Man was about 3 months old, we had a massive crisis (; It’s an absolutely normal thing when you breastfeed and it needs a lot of patience and consistency ( I will right about it more soon) but it’s worth it! However, after that crisis, which lasted about a week, our Little Man started waking up a couple more times during the night and stopped falling asleep while watching his carousel, most of the evenings…
We tried everything, rocking him to sleep in our arms, in a car-seat-carrier, in his little swing and baby rocker, we sang lullabies and played them to him on our phones or cd player (thinking that maybe he doesn’t like our singing lol). Nothing worked, nothing except for my breast!
Ever since my baby was born I heard around that I must not allow him to fall asleep while being fed as he would get used to it. Yes, he did get used to it and to be honest, at the moment I’m glad he did. Or rather I did should I say because that is obviously what he needed and still needs. There were times when I thought, right – I’m doing the wrong thing, I’m giving him bad habits, I won’t have a life of my own etc.but luckily I managed to gather myself and kept on doing what my baby needed me to do and what my heart told me to do. Most of the times….but one time….
Yes, we had a short episode of everyone around telling us to break this habit plus we were very tired of our Little Man crying over and over again for his mommy to come and feed him to sleep. We read a few articles and fragments of books about how to make your baby fall asleep on its own and we unfortunately decided to try „the best method ever” – controlled crying. You put your baby in the cot and as soon as it starts crying, you pick it up, rock it a bit in your arms and then when it stops crying you put it back in the cot and repeat. There are different variations of the controlled crying method but the one we used made our Little Man fall asleep after crying louder and louder every time I put him back to his cot for about an hour (I’ve counted up to 50 times…). That’s when he fell asleep weeping histerically….That was wrong, that was so wrong that by the time our Little Man fell asleep I was crying my eyes out together with him. I wish I never tried it but on the other hand, maybe it’s good I did? At least I finally understood that when a baby cries, it cries because it has a reason. It might even be that he simply needed me to be as close as possible and that’s it. He was 4 months old, he didn’t understand what I was doing, he was crying „mommy, I just want you to cuddle me to sleep” while I kept putting him away to his cot…horrible. It makes me cry even now, when I’m writing these words going back in time to that moment.
Since then I never tried this method again and I’m not planning to. The moment my baby starts crying, I pick it up and cuddle. When he doesn’t want to be put back into his cot, I take him to our bed and he sleeps with us until he decides to go back to his own bed again. I personally don’t think a baby is meant to be experimented on with different methods our modern times are making up.A baby IS NOT an experimental bunny! A mother has always been the person ready to comfort her baby by all means at all times. Motherhood isn’t just about playing and laughing with your baby,it’s a difficult duty filled with different less pleasant chores as well but most of all it’s a very deep relation based on reliability, responsibilty, dependency, trust, dedication and devotion. In the long run, all the above leads to building a childs’ self-esteem and feeling of safety but only if it’s been practiced from the moment a baby is born…
Now, how does the method of controlled crying relate to this? You can answer yourself.
I know many mums use such methods and I am not here to offend any of you. I just wanted to share my thoughts with you and maybe sow a seed of concern towards all these methods of raising a baby the media around us are spreading nowadays. What you probably need to ask yourself is – do you want to raise a human or a robot you can programme however you wish?
I definitely want to raise my Little Man to be a man with feelings, empathy and sensitivity that’s why as a mother, I’m not here to MAKE him go to sleep anymore, I’m here to HELP him fall asleep ❤