Do you stay with your toddler until they fall asleep?

(82 Posts)
Sprite21 Sat 26-Jan-13 20:20:44

DD is 16 months old. After her bedtime routine I put her down in her cot and she insists on me holding her hand until she falls asleep. I don't mind usually as I just read mumsnet posts on my phone. But sometimes it takes a while and DP gets frustrated because dinner is ready. He thinks maybe we should just leave her to cry because other babies seem to just go down.
I just wondered what other people do? Am looking teaching her that she needs me to fall asleep? She sleeps through most nights now so I can't complain there.

Tee2072 Sat 26-Jan-13 20:21:47

I used to. He eventually learned to self settle. At about 2.5.

Now at 3.7 he sleeps 7ish to 7. More or less.

TheOneAndOnlyAlpha Sat 26-Jan-13 20:25:15

No. DS has a comfort blanket that we used to help him settle. It's amazing. I used to do the same as you, but I was sometimes in there for an hour. Within a week of him having his blanket he was self settling within 10 mins, usually he now asleep within 5. He's 17 mo.

colditz Sat 26-Jan-13 20:26:11

Yes, I did, he grew out of it and really, why stress everyone out? Could you enjoy dinner through the sound of your daughter screaming for you? Your husband should have kept his dick in his pants if late dinners bother him that much.

Lostonthemoors Sat 26-Jan-13 20:26:42

I co sleep with mine, so yes. Even the NHS don't recommend crying it out any more, I don't think. It raises children's stress levels - measurable as cortisol.

lostinindia Sat 26-Jan-13 20:28:08

Yes. Dh stays with dd 4yrs and I stay with Ds 2yrs. Its not forever and they like it.

SavoyCabbage Sat 26-Jan-13 20:28:12

No never. I have music playing on a CD player which I think makes them feel less alone somehow.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 20:28:57

I did. DS is 4 now and doesn't need me to stay with him any more.

rhetorician Sat 26-Jan-13 20:30:26

no; put dd2 (14 months, more or less) in cot in sleeping bag kiss her, say 'night night' and walk away (lest you think I am smuggamama until Dec she was sleeping in our bed and waking up 3-4 x a night); DD1 is 4 and sometimes I stay with her for a few minutes, but always leave before she is actually asleep. yours sounds perfect for gradual withdrawal; sit by cot, sit by door, sit outside etc

TheOneAndOnlyAlpha Sat 26-Jan-13 20:30:33

Bit harsh, colditz.

I do. We watch a film together in bed and by the time its finished he is asleep.

Its just me and him at home so it doesn't affect anything. Sometimes if hes really tired he will put his pjs on, say night and go to bed his self. Hes 3

tanfastic Sat 26-Jan-13 20:31:54

I never had to until he turned three and we took the dummy away. He's nearly five now and I still sit with him every night until he falls asleep. Sometimes it can be half an hour or more blush. However, I figure he won't want be to do it at 15 and it's doing me no harm as I usually sit and look at my phone and I'd not be doing much else anyway.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 20:32:30

I think it's lovely that you're happy to do that for her. She must go to sleep feeling so safe and loved. (Which is not to say that DC who are happy to sleep alone don't!) As long as they feel secure that is what's important. I think leaving her to cry would be wrong - and since when was that the only solution to getting them to fall asleep alone anyway, if you want to?

FWIW I found that DS went through phases where sometimes he needed me to stay for a long time and sometimes it was only 5 minutes and he'd be asleep. If it was taking longer, it was usually because something was bothering him or he wasn't "relaxing" fully. At 16 months possibly hard to judge - I'm talking after he went into his own bed at 2.5, here.

Bagofmashings Sat 26-Jan-13 20:36:23

Sometimes, I leave the room & if he screams I go back in. I also look at mumsnet while waiting!
I would say give leaving the room a go and see what happens. Your dd may decide to settle on her own at some point.

Maternitygold Sat 26-Jan-13 20:42:55

I can never imagine leaving my daughter crying all by herself. It's my responsibility as a parent to help her, comfort her and guide her... Not to leave her crying and then giving up because no help is near. Is holding hand for a while too much to ask! She is just a little baby ... What you are doing is absolutely right. Please don't give up on her.

RubyrooUK Sat 26-Jan-13 20:44:06

Yes, DH and I lie down and cuddle DS (2.5), maybe sing a bit and tell him we love him. We used to co-sleep but now he sleeps in a single bed in his own room.

Although sometimes I find it annoying when I'm exhausted and want to get on with having my own evening, mainly it is one of the most wonderful, snuggly highlights of motherhood for me. DS is a very cuddly child and I love that closeness and how he sighs with contentment as he falls asleep.

It used to take about an hour to get him to sleep, now it's about 20 minutes, sometimes less. He often wakes in the night and has got much better at self settling. So I figure that sooner or later we will just have a hug before bed and he'll drift off.

Plus he didn't sleep more than two hours ever until he was 16 months old. As far as we're concerned, this is pretty ace.

Sprite21 Sat 26-Jan-13 20:44:47

Thanks for your messages.
Colditz, DP is a wonderful father. It wasn't meant to be a criticism.
I don't mind staying but I think the idea of gradual withdrawal might work as well. Bertie, your comments made me a little tearful, in a good way.

TheMysteryCat Sat 26-Jan-13 20:45:19

Mine sings to himself for about 10 minutes after I leave the room. He's two. He also calls out: "love you!" As I go.

Up until a few months ago he used to bf to sleep. I feel quite lucky! Though, until he was 1 he never slept for more than three hours in a block.

TheCountessOlenska Sat 26-Jan-13 21:20:01

I lie down and get right in with my 2.9 year old blush - I see it as an excuse for a quick pre-dinner nap grin

NaturalBaby Sat 26-Jan-13 21:24:10

If you've got to 16months without this being a problem then I wouldn't start worrying about it now! If it works for you both and you're happy to do it then it's not a problem at all. I had big issues with ds1 settling to sleep - I had to sit with him for at least 30mins then if he woke up in the middle of the night I had to sit with him again.

Does she have a comforter or cuddly toy to help if you want to do gradual withdrawal. My toddler has just discovered Winnie the Pooh so I have to say night night to Pooh as well as him now!

I stay with DS (2.3) - I sit on the floor and sing and he's often asleep within 5/10 mins. Lately he's been taking a lot longer and asking me to stroke his hand/hair so he seems to be struggling to switch off, which is understandable, he's learning a hell of a lot!

I actually like sitting with him (mostly - it can be frustrating sometimes when I just want to go and chill out!) and like you will just mumsnet on my phone while he drifts off. I keep thinking I'll try the gradual withrawal method at some point, when I can be bothered wink

I normally eat dinner with DS at 5ish, DH has his when he gets home from work at 6ish, so I don't have a meal to worry about though.

EldonAve Sat 26-Jan-13 21:30:28

yes I usually have to stay with mine - 2.5 yrs

No & never have with any of them.

Ds is 13 months & in his own room. The girls share & are 5,4&2 so have each other.

We read a story each they all get in I tuck them in and kiss & cuddle each then leave the room.

If anyone is crying I go back to sort them out but with the close age gaps I've never had the time for staying till they fall asleep tbh

CitizenOscar Sat 26-Jan-13 21:30:49

Depends. If he's still & settled, we'll leave him after a few minutes. If he's wriggly we have to stay otherwise he'll stand up & cry for us. We don't leave him to cry. If we've left him & he starts crying, we'll see if he stops after a minute or two but go in if he doesn't.

Sometimes if he really doesn't settle, we'll lie with him in bed til he sleeps.

Sometimes the whole thing takes a minute or two. At worst, 45mins+. Usually 5-10mins so I think that's ok.

DS is 19months

nellyjelly Sat 26-Jan-13 21:31:14

Yes DS who is 2.5 likes me to hold his hand. Tbh it's a bloody pain cos he will take up to 30 mins to drop off.

AppleOgies Sat 26-Jan-13 21:33:03

Yes. He's 2.10. He falls asleep so quickly though, it's really no hassle.

zeeboo Sat 26-Jan-13 21:35:59

Yes, she goes into her bed next to mine and I go into my bed and I read on my kindle while she falls asleep. It's a lovely half an hour or so of rest for me before I go downstairs and turn my attention to the older children.

I used to, but we have a nightlight attached to the side of the cot (it's actually a 'deconstructed' mobile - we took the spinny bit off) which plays a lullaby.

I cuddle with DD for a while, once she's had a story and then put her into her cot. I stay for about 5 minutes, and do my best to persuade her to lay down and be quiet.

After that I tell her I'm going to check on the cat/on Daddy, or some similar excuse and leave the room.

She normally settles within about 10 minutes.

TheFallenNinja Sat 26-Jan-13 21:38:36

No, but I'll sit at the top of the stairs for a while and listen.

tacal Sat 26-Jan-13 21:40:13

I still do and he is 4 now. We read a book, or sometimes watch a dvd, and then cuddle or hold hands until he falls asleep.

Iggly Sat 26-Jan-13 21:42:21

Yes I do.

Although I will point out I dont consider a 16 month old a toddler even when they can walk. My eldest is 3 and youngest is 14 months and even though she walks she's still a baby!

Iggly Sat 26-Jan-13 21:44:39

"other people's babies seem to just go down". I bet I'd you asked around you'd find otherwise.

I remember hearing my neighbour letting her 18 month old scream for 20 mins at bedtime as she left her. Fucking awful to hear and I am not her parent!

maxmillie Sat 26-Jan-13 21:44:59

No. But mine have never cried after bedtime routine, settling etc so I just kiss them, tuck in etc say nite nite love you and close the door.

I never leave them crying though if they wake up in the night or anything.

DoubleYew Sat 26-Jan-13 21:51:16

Yes stay with him (still bf), if he's not had a nap 5 mins, if he has had a nap up to 1.5hrs. I listen to my ipod and eat with him so not starving if he takes ages. Sometimes fall asleep and wake to everything left on downstairs (single parent).

Devora Sat 26-Jan-13 21:54:29

Yes I have done this with both of mine, still do with the youngest (who is 3).

At times it has felt like a huge burden - now I have my kindle fire I am happy just sitting by the bed reading a novel, and she settles quickly. But there have been times when I have spent a huge chunk of my evenings settling first one then the other, frustrated to the point of tears. And a babysitter is out of the question - only me, dp and my dm are able to get them to sleep.

I know I am a complete wuss on this, and I know why. First it's because I was terrified of the dark as a child, and bedtime was a torment for me for many years. Second is because I work FT, often long hours, and this is often the only time of the week I get with them (and my working mother guilt makes it hard to deny them). Third is because the youngest is adopted, and very very clingy, and it feels too high a risk to leave her to cry.

HardlyEverHoovers Sat 26-Jan-13 22:10:22

Yes i do, take the opportnity to read a book. Maybe u could have dinner a little later?

newbielisa Sat 26-Jan-13 22:13:07

Yes, DD1 is 2.5 and we get into her bed with her (and sometimes/a lot of the time fall asleep as well). I say we but it's mostly DH as we have DD2 who is 11 weeks and a prolific breast feeder. Whenever DD2 is asleep (not often) and I get the chance to do DD1 bedtime I love it but know I'd get really frustrated if I had to do it every night, my husband is a Saint.

I'm guessing the Mumsnet philosophy of "this too will pass" will one day come true and she'll go to bed by herself. When that does happen DH and I will probably sit on the sofa brimming about the good ol' days when our little girl wanted us at bedtimesad

MummyDuckAndDuckling Sat 26-Jan-13 22:23:35

Routine for 16mnth dd is into sleeping bag, read a few books, into cot with teddy and dummy and I say 'night night'. She has a little light that projects stars into the room so has that on and usually is sleeping within 10 mins.

No offence, but I couldn't be bothered with the whole having to sit with them/lay with them till they fall asleep. My evenings are 'me' time

AngryGnome Sat 26-Jan-13 22:29:22

Yes, either dh or I do most nights. Ds is just over 2 and takea anything between 5 mins and an hour on bad nights. It's not a big deal for us at the moment.

Rikalaily Sat 26-Jan-13 22:36:32

Dd3 is 2.5 and for the first time fell asleep on her own tonight. We always sit with her until she drops off and have done with all of them apart from my first who I did CC with because of pressure from the in laws, swore to never do that again.

We use the slowly withdraw method, sit with them for a while then nip to the loo etc, go back in and when they don't react to us leaving the room we extend the time we are out, standing just outside the door incase they get upset then just show our face, if they are happy with that thats great, if they need us in there, thats fine too. We go at thier pace, the last thing we want is bedtime to be a scarey thing for them.

kateecass Sat 26-Jan-13 22:38:26

Another person who has used gradual withdrawal when DC have had trouble settling. As lovely as it would be to stay with DC til they sleep every night you can't when you have 2 and there are all the other jobs to do. I actually think its important to teach them to go to sleep by themselves happily. Have also tidied up my Dds room as she has gone to sleep as a means of getting her to sleep and also going back every 5 mins and telling them this. These are probably for older kids though. Still do this when they needed.

rhetorician Sat 26-Jan-13 22:47:12

should add that neither of them cry on their way to sleep; DD2 occasionally for a minute or two, but only if she is really tired - it's like she is crying because she isn't already asleep IYSWIM?

thewhistler Sat 26-Jan-13 22:50:28

If it was my turn, not always, if it was DH, yes he did. Result, great bonding between DH and Ds that has stood them well.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Sun 27-Jan-13 02:06:46

No. Ds is 2.5. I think he started self settling around 12 mo. I used gradual withdrawal and he had a musical seahorse that he would fall to sleep to. I'm just not prepared to waste an hour of every evening sitting in the dark when there's so many other things to do, plus if we want to go out, it's not fair to leave a babysitter with a child who isn't settled. Perhaps it helps that we live in an apartment so the dc can hear us chatting, moving around, etc when they're in bed.

HappyAsASandboy Sun 27-Jan-13 04:09:57

I do. My twins are two years and three months.

We lie on our bed and read stories, then they each turn out one of the bedside lights and we lie in the dark. Sometimes they drop off very quickly, sometimes it can take an hour or so. If I get bored, I look at MN on my phone.

Once they're asleep, I lift them into their cots (in our room) and then come downstairs for the evening. Or (more and more often recently) I fall asleep with them and stay in bed waking up in my clothes at midnight.

They're both still waking or cuddles or a breastfeed in the night, so we cosleep from whenever they first wake.

I think the majority of toddler need a parent close to fall asleep, and the majority probably don't really sleep through either.

NickNacks Sun 27-Jan-13 04:22:19

No never.

I can't imagine getting to 2 or 3 years old and doing this.

Mine are all very able to self settle from a young age because they know if they do have a problem and cry, I or DH will come straight away. But sitting with then every night? It shouldn't be necessary!

MumofWombat Sun 27-Jan-13 04:23:47

We've self settled from very early on. I watched my SIL spend over an hour every night with her youngest waiting with them to fall asleep and decided that it would drive me batty to do the same. DS (21 months) has lullaby music on and he looks at picture books by himself on his bed (I do read to him - just earlier on in the day!) and drops off to sleep by himself within 10-20 minutes. He's not left to cry.

applecharlotte Sun 27-Jan-13 11:58:33

I could have written your post 6 months ago. I sat with my DS for anything between 30- 60 mins until he feel asleep for every nap and bedtime until he got to about 19mo. He would cry and cry if I tried to leave. Sometimes it was annoying, but I didn't mind the me time mostly! I had lots of people saying I should just let him cry etc but just couldn't do it. However, one day i just tried walking out after a quick cuddle and he just self settled and has done ever since (only the first night of staying somewhere new do I have to sit in with him these days which of course is nothing compared to before!)

I just felt that DS became happy to self settle on his own as he had learnt that I will always be available if he needs me. I'm so glad I didn't do the controlled crying thing as I know we both would have hated that.

So I suppose the point of me posting is to say maybe in a few months your DD might be happy to self settle without having to do sleep training. If you can hold on for a bit longer (without annoying DH too much!) it might be worth it.

Some babies self settle at 3 months, some at 12 months, some at 3 years old. They're all different and I think its actually unfair to compare.

RubyrooUK Sun 27-Jan-13 12:14:10

NickNacks - I think it isn't necessary to sit with all small children. Some of them are very good at settling without any years whereas others are terrible.

My mum had one child (my brother) who self settled very early and never needed anyone to lie down with him. It never involved crying at all. And then me, who she lay down with till I was four as I needed that reassurance from my mum at night. I cried till I was sick if she left me. I wasn't fobbed off with her popping out or gradual withdrawal. (My poor mum!)

We both seem to be reasonably normal, confident adults now who can settle to sleep so I assume that different children find it harder or easier to settle so need different treatment.

bickie Sun 27-Jan-13 12:20:35

Get out of the habit unless sick. I don't think a household that runs around a child's routine is great idea for relationship. I know that's not a popular view on MN - but it is a little crazy to let the only person who can't make a sensible decision (the 2yo) dictate when everyone else eats. My niece has been brought up that way - and believe me at 3 it is wearing everyone's patience - especially my DB.

ceeveebee Sun 27-Jan-13 12:29:35

God no. Never have. Always left them to settle even from a few weeks old.
However I think as I have twins its easier to leave them as they keep each other company. And DS loves his jojo mamam cow comforter and would not sleep without it, we have 4 now.

noblegiraffe Sun 27-Jan-13 12:33:19

Yes with my DS, gradual withdrawal worked as far as stopping patting/touching/sitting right next to the cot but if you stepped a foot outside of the door, however quietly, he'd be up and crying like a shot.

Then we moved him to his big boy bed at around 2, I sat down by the door as usual and he said 'go away mummy' and has fallen asleep by himself ever since.

Longdistance Sun 27-Jan-13 12:43:18

My dd1 who is 3.4 is a bugger to settle, so we usually sit with her.
It's like she can't switch off, and wind down and is constantly going like a Duracell bunny hmm it is exhausting just watching her wind down.
She's always been like this, even as a baby wanting someone in the room with her.
Dd2 however, is a thumb sucker and self settles like a dream baby.

notso Sun 27-Jan-13 12:49:56

With DC1 yes, but it was a pain and we were still doing it at 4 years old so the subsequent 3DC have been taught to fall asleep on their own.
I find doing something upstairs like sorting laundry for a while helps so they know you are there.
Sometimes DS2 2y does a bit of a shouty cry more cross than upset IYSWIM when I leave the room and I go back in and say "shhh, sleeping time" resettle him and then stand close to the door for a minute, but always try to leave before he is fully asleep.

Girlsville Sun 27-Jan-13 13:18:06

If he needs it, I would just stay with him. I am ( gasp) a v strict believer in routine but I always stayed with dd1 at nap time and bed time until she fell asleep because she wanted/ needed it. The day she moved to a bed at 2. 10 she said ' I'm ok mummy' and has never needed me in her room since. I do think if they need you to stay with them then it is a personality thing it causes a lot less anxiety for everyone of you do stay, and they all grow out of it in time. Dd2 who is almost 2 has never needed us in the room to go to sleep - different children, different needs.

Beatrixpotty Sun 27-Jan-13 14:07:08

With my first,yes for a while,think it had to stop at 18m when DS2 came along as simply no time to do it,but never with my second.They share a room though so he always has company.Also is an easy baby/toddler and sucks a toy for comfort so can't wait to get in his cot.Always have the same lullaby CD on too.
Is it the same at lunchtime nap time too?If they can do it then,it should be possible to get them out of the night time habit too otherwise it just gets frustrating for everyone..

AngelDog Sun 27-Jan-13 21:00:58

Yes. He's 3.1 and panics even at the thought of me being downstairs in the evening while he's asleep.

NeverStops Mon 28-Jan-13 09:49:14

I have an 18 month old DS and after his bath at 7.15pm has his milk and a story and then goes straight into his cot and after kisses and a tucking in rhyme we leave the room. we started this at 8 months old and he was reluctant at first, crying for attention and head banging, but after a week of doing the same routine he soon realised it wasn't going to get him the attention. Now 10 months on if he isn't tired when it is bedtime he plays with his cuddly toy until he goes to sleep... sometimes it 5 minutes sometimes it can be an hour, but he doesn't kick up a fuss and isn't stressed about bedtime.

explosioninatoyshop Mon 28-Jan-13 11:58:08

We did until DS was 13 months, it often took him 30 - 40 mins to go off, and he'd wake up several times in the night. Then I went back to work and I wanted a bit more of an evening with DH, and wanted DS to sleep better at night. We did gradual withdrawal - shortened settling down routine, then started leaving the room before he was asleep and only very brief visits if he woke up in the night. Once I got to the leaving the room stage he did cry in protest for about 20 mins the first night and 15 mins the second night, then got over it and has been fine since. He now settles himself down fine and sleeps through (mostly!), it's so much better for us all. I think what's most important is to figure out what works for your family, and do it! Don't worry about what other people do - that way madness lies grin

sweetaddict Mon 28-Jan-13 21:50:05

Can I ask people how you sit with a child if you have another to put to bed afterwards? What if they take ages, does the older just wait?

rrreow Mon 28-Jan-13 22:17:59

We started off like that (around 12m - before that we co-slept and he'd go down when we went to bed) and gradually stopped doing it. Thing is, staying with him started taking longer and longer because he was too stimulated by us being there, so at a certain point we started withdrawing more. Leaving the room and coming back etc if he cried. It was over the course of about 2 months I think to get it completely reliable where we could just do bedtime routine and then leave the room (apart from when poorly).

Since yesterday we have moved DS into his own room though, so to help him transition we're staying with him until he's asleep (currently sitting down just inside the door, tomorrow will probably sit outside the door).

ceeveebee Mon 28-Jan-13 22:20:30

My Dsis used to sit with DC1 and BIL with DC2. Total madness

I suspect in most cases, once DC2 comes along then DC1 has to learn to fall asleep alone. But maybe I'm wrong

FunnysInLaJardin Mon 28-Jan-13 22:25:28

No, but my DC were good at self settling and so didn't cry or need us to stay. Once in beds they would come downstairs but we solved that by sitting outside their rooms with wine and the computer until they learned we would be there until they went to sleep i.e. would put them back in bed as fast as they got out. Now DC aged 3 and 7 go to bed and play/sing themselves to sleep

MooMooSkit Mon 28-Jan-13 22:29:48

No I never and don't stay with him. He has a little whine for about 5 mins then drops off anyway. If i've ever tried to stay with him till he falls asleep if he has been upset he just gets hyper that i'm in there and starts wanting to play and sing songs with me.

Zappo Mon 28-Jan-13 22:29:53

"Can I ask people how you sit with a child if you have another to put to bed afterwards? What if they take ages, does the older just wait? "

Am lucky in that DH is normally around to help me at bedtime and although I do both bedtimes at the moment (as both ask for meat bedtime), he can entertain the younger while I put the eldest to bed first. Eldest is usually the more tired of the two as just started school.

I dislike doing bedtime on my own as DD2 (2) will jump around and run up and down when I'm trying to have some quiet time/ read with DD1.

Frequently our story is disrupted so I read as quickly as I can and then switch off the light and say "I will just get DD2 to sleep and check on you afterwards. I wonder who will fall asleep first." I then take DD" off to bed.

DD1 is ok with this as shortly after DD2 was born I stopped waiting with DD1 until she was asleep (she was always resisting sleep to stop me leaving). Once I started telling her to try to go to sleep and that I would check on her in 5 minutes she started to relax (as she knew I would come back) and would be asleep in a few minutes.

silver28 Mon 28-Jan-13 22:34:21

I used to sit with DS, sometimes for up to an hour. One night when he was 2.5 I decided to try leaving him. He did cry while i sat on the landing and went back every few mins cos he got out of bed a few times. But after 15 mins he fell asleep, so it hadn't been too bad. The next night I was prepared for the tears to start but be just said 'night night mummy' and snuggled down to sleep. He's 4.9 now and has been brilliant at going to bed just about every night since then (lucky though, I know, but it can work like that).

We were wimps and stayed with our DCs while they fell asleep. It did drive me mad though. We got round the dinner thing by eating earlier, with the children. Then took turns so while it annoyed me one night at least you'd know you had the evening off the next night!...

Youngest is 4 and now we leave him to go to sleep. 4! all those wasted years!

BUT also I would not have enjoyed hearing lots of screaming and crying.

SweetPea99 Tue 29-Jan-13 19:32:11

Going to sleep is a skill that needs to be taught to children, so you can choose to do it however you want. As someone else said, you teach them to self-settle for their lunch time nap, and then it becomes easier at night. In fact, my DS2 (16 months) goes to bedmore easily in the evening because he has an established routine - bath, milk, story, toy with lights and music. Is staying with them in their room for an hour every night teaching them to settle themselves? I'm not sure... Of course, if you don't mind, then it doesn't matter - until number 2 or 3 comes along, or until your partner isn't there to help at bedtime ( I have always done bedtime alone, so had to get the children to settle themselves, or I would have gone mad!).

sweetaddict Tue 29-Jan-13 21:03:27

That's what I would have said three weeks ago, yet now I find I will do anything that gets her to sleep so I can have some semblance of an evening. And yes we do bath, story, bed, same time etc etc...

1500mmania Tue 29-Jan-13 21:33:01

No it would drive me crazy! BF DS before bed put him in cot and then he would go to sleep. at 6 months he had a few nights of being unsettled, left him to cry and it was sorted in 3 nights. Now stopped BF and so it is milk in cup, 3 books then in the cot & leave the room. never any crying. I'm happy, DS is happy - no qualms that we did the right thing teaching him to self settle.

Maybe it's not for everyone but I hate all the comments putting down sleep training methods. Different parents do different things and teaching baby to self settle is not bad thing to do

lizandlulu Tue 29-Jan-13 21:42:38

Yes ith dd1. She used to have to hold my arm till she fell asleep, she has a cabin bed so I used to stand there for upto an hour. I didn't mind too much until dd2 came along. With very little help from dH, I found it impossible to be in two places at the same time, so things had to come to a head. She was 6 when I finally had to stop it, but I think she was old enough to understand I physically couldn't stand there for that time.
I wish I had sorted it sooner

duchesse Tue 29-Jan-13 21:57:27

Depends on the child. I've had four (toddlers) and they've all been vastly different, ranging from definitely needing to be held (DS) to actually needing to be put down (DD1) to go sleep. DD3 (now 3 yo) can be left in her bed awake and she will go to sleep in a few minutes. DS would have screamed for 3 hours if we'd left him alone in his room we tried it for a few weeks, poor child. They always always had stories at bedtime though.

I think you have to do whatever works for your child.

CointreauVersial Wed 30-Jan-13 17:48:52


Before I had children I observed my SIL spending two hours of every evening settling her DS and I vowed I wouldn't allow that habit to develop if I could possibly help it.

So all three of my DCs have self-settled since they were a few weeks old, and I have never had to stay with them, with the exception of illness, or when DS had a spate of night terrors.

It may work for some of you, but not for me. See also co-sleeping.wink

Ragwort Wed 30-Jan-13 17:52:59

I never did either, I let my DS self-settle from the day we got home from hospital blush - clearly I wasn't a Mumsnetter then as it never occured to me to sit with him whilst he went to sleep grin - perhaps I was just very, very lucky - he's always been a great sleeper smile.

I think it would be quite hard to now give up sitting with your child as they have clearly got used to it.

noblegiraffe Wed 30-Jan-13 18:04:51

I reckon you didn't let your baby self settle, you had a baby who self-settled.

I remember looking around at my post-natal group as babies nodded off in their mothers' arms. I had no idea it was even possible as my baby only got angrier and angrier the more tired he got and he had to be forced to sleep via violent rocking. Absolutely no sodding chance of self settling, and it was a good few weeks of misery before I realised that some tired babies will not simply just fall asleep.

AngelDog Wed 30-Jan-13 19:36:04

noble, I agree - I remember friends parading DS round on their shoulder and saying, "When I do this, they always fall asleep." I was shock confused as DS had never, ever, ever just nodded off like that (or by any other means either).

It was a full time job getting him to sleep at all for the first 4 months, let alone trying to (a) put him down and (b) get him to go to sleep without being violently jiggled / bounced in the sling.

Although I do sit with him at bedtime, he's asleep in 5-10 mins so I don't mind.

abbyfromoz Wed 30-Jan-13 23:18:47

Nope. DD is 21 months now and we used to rock her to sleep or pat her on the back but decided to stop that quite early on so it wouldn't become a habit. She has a 'nigh nigh' (pacifier) and her 'gogo' (a comforter) and a bottle. It works well but i have no idea what we will do when we stop that routine!! :-(

Lostonthemoors Thu 31-Jan-13 08:22:16

Noble, I couldn't agree more. My DS never settled without huge proactive efforts and I think other people just thought I was making a big meal of it confused

gillian88 Thu 31-Jan-13 08:34:22

I stay with my 2.8 yr old until he falls asleep! Doesn't bother me, he's only young and it's not like he's still going to want me to do it when he is 16!! so I'm enjoying the closeness while I can, cos they grow up and become independent wayyyyy to quickly!!

5madthings Thu 31-Jan-13 08:54:02

Some babies and toddlers need this extra reassurance and some dont.

Ds1 needed it.

Ds2 needed it.

Ds3 needed it.

Ds4 sucked his thumb and self soothed from an early age.

Dd is 25mths and varies some nights she needs me to stay with her, others not.

I dont see it as a hardship as they are only little once and they grow out if it.

My dp is regularly not here at bedtime as his shifts include nights, evenings and even.if he is on an am shift he often has to stay late. I evolved various techniques to.make it easier, i tended to.put older toddler down.first and keep.the baby with me in the evening, i would feed the baby whilst settling toddler if i.had to.or put a swing or wore a sling or for ds2 and ds3 i tandem.fed for a while so woukd lie in ds2's bed and feed both to sleep and then transfer ds3 to my.bed.

We have always co-slept and they have each gone happily into.their own.bed at 2-3yrs old. we have always still had a set bedtime routine and got them down by 7:30 -8pm etc so.had an evening once they were asleep. We eat dinner at 6pm.

Dp and i jusy never wanted to leave them to cry so didnt, we would stay or sit by the door or potter doing stuff or go in and oyf or i would feed or lay down etc it depended on the child and what their needs were.

At 13, 10, 8 and 4 the elder boys all sleep fine and are very independent etc. The elder three go to bed on their own yho ds3 will still have a story and ds4 will gave cuddles and story in.bed.

I dont think its pandering or letting them rule the household, some children need it, others dont and i would rather help mine learn to sleep gently without leaving them to cry etc.

gourd Thu 31-Jan-13 09:04:56

No. We never did it. I read something that basically said do whatever works for you - BUT choose something that you would be prepared to have to do for a VERY LONG TIME. Therefore we decided to never do this in case we haev to do it for months and months or years. Instead we'd pop our heads round the door every so often and reassure her (less and less frequestly as she began to drift off) till she realised that just because she couldnt see us didn't mean we weren't tere and also that we were not going to play with her or get her out of bed as it was bedtime. This seemed to work for us. We've only had two-three nights at a time on about three accaisions in her liife after 6 weeks old, where she woudlnt settle straight away or woke in the night distressed. Mostly she's been going to bed at bedtime and staying there quite happily till morning. She does wake in the night sometimes - and we hear her growling (like a bear) and playing and laughing to herself in bed - she doesn't get out of bed in the niught though. Her room is dark and she doesnt have a night light or anything (doesnt seem to need one), which may be part of the reason that she stays in bed. She's nearly 2 and a half now. I think you just ahve to do soekthign that helps them seltte but which you feel you can sustain for a prolonged period should the need arise (hopefully it wont). We also felt that going into her room and messing about/talking to her too much etc woud actually wake her up and distract her from sleep, disturbing her further, and we felt the smallest intervention possible was better, so we did just the minimum that seemed to work and left it at that. At first we did to go into the room and go up to the cot but gradually we started just popping our head round the door and saying "Shh, time to sleep now" or something like that and this also worked -we realised this was better.

hazeyjane Thu 31-Jan-13 09:14:37

Our dcs have always settled to sleep with one of us there.

It isn't that they rule the household, it is just part of the bedtime routine, and we are all happy with the way it works.

I don't get the, not being possible with children close in age, or more than one dc, our dcs are 6, 5 and 2.7 and they all go to sleep, with one of us there. Including bath and story, bedtime takes about an hour, a little bit logen for ds (2.6), but he has sn, and has a different routine to the girls and takes a little longer to settle.

There was a time when the dds were about 2 and 1 and we had just moved house and they were very unsettled, and would take forever to go to sleep, with us there, and we tried different ways to get them to settle, but nothing seemed to work. I remember reading the No Cry Sleep Solution, and it made me feel much better about working out a solution that suited everyone, whether that is co sleeping or whatever works. We sat and rejigged the bedroom layout, worked out a new bedtime routine, started it much earlier in the evening, and accepted that they settled better with one of us there, and it has been fine ever since.

(Now if I could just get ds to wake up later than 4.30am life would be sweet!)

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