Routine yes or no?

(20 Posts)
MagicDucky Mon 02-Jun-14 13:41:25

A friend of mine has told me she's not and doesn't intend on getting her 2 month old into a routine. Is it just me who thinks this is nuts? I'm obviously not trying to criticise her parenting technique. Maybe I'm doing it wrong? Thoughts and experiences welcome.

Babesh Mon 02-Jun-14 13:46:07

Got four, never implemented a routine. Can't see why this is mad at all?! The transition from newborn to toddler to child brings it's own order, your child becoming more routine is developmental. Mine all went to 2 naps then 1 then non and feeding spaced and became predictable. Sure you can encourage it but if happens anyway.

FatalCabbage Mon 02-Jun-14 13:48:57

A 2mo doesn't need a "routine" but I bet they have a "pattern" and signposts within it, eg wake, nappy, feed, nappy, sleep, wake, go for a walk with the pram, feed, etc.

Routines come once you have fixed items in your week like classes or groups, or after ML when you have to drop off at childcare by 8.30 to be in the office for 9...

My little babies have never had a routine, only patterns, later fitting in round their elder sibling(s)'s activities, school run, etc.

stargirl1701 Mon 02-Jun-14 13:55:53

At 2 months?! No way do you need a routine. Day/night differentiation is all you are working towards.

We started a routine at 6 months as DD could then (finally!) be in her room when having naps/sleeping, solids were introduced and her medication was sorted out.

beatingwings Mon 02-Jun-14 14:09:02

Never had a routine with my kids either- sounds far too much bother.

givemecaffeine21 Mon 02-Jun-14 14:09:36

I think it depends because routine is not only for the child but the parent too. I have both of mine in a good routine (22 months and 11 months) and until DD dropped her nap very recently, they napped together too. I need a good routine for my own sanity, but I have found that they benefit from it.

I've done baby signing with DD (and now doing it with DS) and she would often sign to me the next part of her routine - for example after lunch she'll sign 'nap', after her bath she'll sign milk, then teeth, then bed, although she speaks well now so says the words rather than signs. I feel the routine I have is a good form of security for them and also for me - for starters knowing they will sleep between 12-2 every day without fail makes planning my day a lot easier. I

Equally, some of my friends don't have a routine and they seem to do ok without, although at times it frustrates them as they will be late for stuff because their one year old decided he would nap as they were getting ready to leave and plans go out of the window; I don't have that problem as a result of having a routine which says they get up / go to bed / nap and eat at the same time every day. But I do have an 11 month age gap between mine, so if it isn't planned, it isn't happening!

ExBrightonBell Mon 02-Jun-14 18:30:03

No it's not nuts, clearly. It's just not what you would do, doesn't make it wrong.

I personally intensely dislike fixed routines for babies and would never have tried to implement one with my ds. Gradually over time a pattern developed which enabled a more predictable day, never had any problems with getting out to activities as a result.

MagicDucky Mon 02-Jun-14 21:08:47

Just to clarify, I didn't mean she should have her LO in a routine now! I just meant she doesn't plan on doing it at all. That's the part that shocked me.

I couldn't cope without routine and neither could my LO. She seems to get comfort in knowing what will be happening next.

I just wanted to hear what other people were doing as my friend made me feel really stupid for having a routine and apparently I am.

To each their own I suppose.

Flexibilityiskey Mon 02-Jun-14 21:11:36

Yep, a routine is great if that is what works for you and your DC, or not if it doesn't. We are all different. Because your friend is doing it differently to you doesn't mean either of you are wrong, just different people!

fledermaus Mon 02-Jun-14 21:16:02

Most people develop some kind of routine eventually, as our days are pretty routine - go to bed at the same sort of time, have meals at the same sort of time, go to childcare at the same sort of time.

It's up to individuals whether they get the children into a strict routine or not and when though.

beatingwings Mon 02-Jun-14 21:20:34

magic- you are shocked that some parents don't have routines? It's not a requirement.

I loved the fact we didn't have a routine. Every day was different, often out for the whole day, nap times and feeding times jsut happened when my babies were hungry or tired.

Some days we would get up early, other days sleep late, lovely freedom.

Enough time for routine when they start school and other activites.

FatalCabbage Mon 02-Jun-14 21:23:34

See, I think other people would say my DC have a routine, but I prefer "pattern" tbh.

Routine to me says "milk at 7, 10, 2, 5 and 7; solids at 8, 11.30 and 4pm; naps at 9am and 12pm" whereas pattern says "meals at mealtimes, milk when he asks for it, naps in the morning when we go out with the pram, and sometime after lunch when he looks tired".

I agree that a day completely without predictability would have driven my children bananas. They need a certain number of signposts in their day, even if it's just "... tea, play, bath, story, song, go the fuck to sleep bed".

HeyBungalowBill Mon 02-Jun-14 21:24:39

After a week being in a routine that I started when DS was 10 weeks he started sleeping through.

I've rarely had trouble with his sleep since. He sleeps 7:30pm -7:30am and to put him to bed I literally put him in his cot and walk out.
He naps 9-11 and 1-3.

Keeping DS in a routine has been the best thing I've done as it's meant he is well rested and I can get jobs done while he sleeps! smile

IMO routine is the way to go!

HeyBungalowBill Mon 02-Jun-14 21:25:48

go the fuck to sleep cabbage that made me laugh grin

BertieBotts Mon 02-Jun-14 21:28:31

No I don't like routine. I (mentally) run screaming from the idea of it, predictability is boring!

Of course I ended up with a one year old who needed a routine in order to eat anything resembling normal amounts of food grin

And then I suppose we got into a set pattern once he started nursery, and then school. But when you don't need to be anywhere at a set time it's lovely to go by their needs and your own whims. And I think I was lucky, because I had a baby who would sleep anywhere whenever he was tired, and I was breastfeeding so I could feed him whenever wherever. I don't even remember particularly worrying about day or night because I just put him in the bed with me and went to sleep whether he was awake or not.

That said I don't think it's stupid to have a routine, why would it be? confused It's just what suits you/your child, surely?

ExBrightonBell Mon 02-Jun-14 22:01:57

HeyBungalowBill, don't you think that a routine was just the best way to go for you and your baby? It's clearly not the way to go for everyone. And it's not true that no fixed routine means poor sleep, far from it. That's a common perception that doesn't seem to have any basis.

It's what suits you and your baby, not one approach fits all. IMO do what feels right for you, not what someone else says.

HeyBungalowBill Mon 02-Jun-14 22:16:19

I said IN MY OPINION routine is the way to go as it worked very well for me and many others I know with babies.

The one person I do know who has no routine for her baby is up all night and is constantly wasting bottles as the baby takes small amounts all the time.
She may be happy with things as they are and that is fine but from what she has said she is not happy.

From my experience I haven't met someone without a routine that is happy with it therefore I cannot come on here giving an opinion that I have no reason behind.
I can not turn around and say I think that it is fine either way where from my personal experience routine seems to work far better.

Clearly my experiences and opinions are not as valuable as others just because they conflict with someone else's hmm

ExBrightonBell Mon 02-Jun-14 22:27:53

HeyBB, I was just trying to point out that one size does not fit all. You like routine and it works for you. I don't and that works for me. Neither is more correct than the other.

For each person you know with no routine who is unhappy, I can mention someone I know who has a routine and is miserable. That doesn't get anyone anywhere.

Surely the simplest advice is that if having no routine is not working for you, try a routine. If having a routine is causing you misery then try going with the flow.

2boys1girlNoPeace Wed 04-Jun-14 11:51:14

My twin boys settled in to a routine naturally at about 3-4 weeks, you could time a watch by them. I never intended on it, it just happened.
I liked having a routine, it wasn't a strict routine, it was easy enough to plan around.
My girl however has never had a routine, she sleeps when she wants to rather than at a 'set' time. For a long while her meals were all over the place, at 2 she now eats when we do, that's the only thing she has a routine for at the moment. In some ways I wish she had a routine, but on the other hand it is doing her no harm whatsoever not to have one. She is a good sleeper at night, even if she has napped late.

Routine is great, if that's what works for you. All children and parents are different and just because one does something different doesn't mean it's automatically wrong

mrscog Wed 04-Jun-14 12:05:23

I think it very much depends on whether you mean timed routine or pattern like a few other people have said. I don't think a timed routine which is the same every single day will work for everyone, or that every baby will comply. I suspect most babies/toddlers will fall in to a pattern which suits them. My DS did have patterns, but you couldn't always guarantee it and sometimes we had to change things dependant on what was happening. There is NO WAY he would have stuck to a snack at 10, play until 12, sleep until 2, milk at 2.30 regime, and I would have definitely found it too restrictive. However he probably did snack, play, sleep and milk in the same order with roughly the same amount of time in between each day - but it would have been dictated by what time he initially woke up for the day (which varied between 5.30am and 8am!)

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