to ask how the no crying method works(29 Posts)
This is aimed at Mums who choose not to let their babies cry
I am really posting here for traffic but hope that people don't take this as a criticism of the method as I am genuinely interested in how it works in practice. I have twins and chose to let them cry or did controlled crying (only ever really needed to do it for one of them) and that worked for me. But it has always baffled me how the practice works. Is it just for when they are babies and you don't use it when they are toddlers? Is it EVERY time they cry? At what age do you stop (if only for babies)? If not just for babies, how does it work when a toddler is having a tantrum (I am sure that most toddlers have at least one in their lifetime!)
Just really intrigued. Thanks
Is this to do with sleep? Or not letting them cry in general? (If the latter is even possible?)
OK have re-read your post.
I'm not big on leaving my kids to cry but you can't be there to immediate soothe them every second of everyday?
I had to sometimes let my newborn fuss for a few minutes (occasionally full on crying) as I was changing my toddlers shitty bum / trying not to burn food / changing my maternity pad or some other thing that I simply couldn't just 'stop' to attend to baby. Granted baby would never have been left to cry on purpose and I'd be soothing her as soon as I physically could.
Babies cry, my second cried a lot and it wouldn't have been humanly possible to ensure she never cried?
I don't think there is one method so it's difficult to say as everyone will have different thresholds but as a person who felt strongly about not letting a baby cry, it was really just the thing where people say oh they're fed, clean, burped, just let them cry, they're okay.
I didn't agree with that and I see all crying as communication so even if it's not a physical need I saw it as an emotional need and I would hold a baby who was crying. Of course sometimes you can't immediately get to them or you need to finish something first but I never left mine for any longer than strictly needed.
I wouldn't say that I ever stopped believing this and I would always try to respond to crying but its not like I obsessively try and stop all crying etc, I just try to be sympathetic to it as that's what I'd want if I was upset.
DS is 8 so doesn't cry very often but I tend to be sympathetic when he does.
Yes, its crying in general as I have seen (on a few posts) parents saying the never let their baby cry and I just can't see how it's possible!! But it's not a criticism, if anything, I am amazed how anyone does this (for many of the reasons you have mentioned crunchymum and more) and I found that having twins it was never going to be feasible. Mine are 2 now and can often have tantrums which I refuse to pander to (as long as I have tried to reason with them first) and will sometimes cry because they have to go to bed and don't want to! Presumably these aren't occasions whereby they are soothed?
My DB never let his children cry, as he's a psychologist and thought it would damage them.
Now as 3 and 5 year olds I don't think it's done them any favours at all. They're really difficult kids for their parents. Still don't sleep through the night. Big temper tantrums when they don't get their own way etc.
Certainly convinced me that my way of letting my children cry a bit, especially when they're tired and what they really need is to go to sleep, is better long term.......
So, yes I think it is possible to not let your kids cry, but I'm really not convinced it's desirable.
I don't think there is a "no crying method". It's just some people choose not to actively let their kid cry - so I might be in the kitchen cooking and my toddler throws a strop at my feet. I'll chat to him, try and talk him through it, give him a hug if he needs it, and get on with cooking. However, if he's crying because he wants a biscuit or something and I've said no, I won't give it to him, but I will talk him through the disappointment of not getting what he wants to help him deal with the emotions.
It's not about pandering to them, giving into all their crying demands, more about not leaving them to cry unattended.
Sleeping is where it often comes up - but my kids do cry at night, of course they do, but they aren't left to cry on their own. My youngest throws a massive strop sometimes if I am DONE with feeding and say he can't have any more milk - either I or (preferably) dh hold him and talk him through it until he's calmed down, and then we have hugs, we don't leave him to cry on his own. At bedtime we sit with the kids until they fall asleep if they need us to (can sometimes leave the older one on his own), I wouldn't leave them crying on their own to fall asleep.
I'm not trying to prevent all crying, just trying to understand why they are crying and help them through it/help them to deal with and understand the emotions that have got too big for them.
I never let either of my babies cry (at least not for a significant length of time if they're grouchy I still need to put them down for a poo sometimes). Sometimes I can't solve the problem but I'd always provide comfort.
When they went through the toddler tantrum phase often they would mainly be crying out of genuine frustration because they couldn't have XYZ (they didn't do many manipulative tantrums - probably because they never worked). In that case I wouldn't give them XYZ if I'd already said no but I tried to stay calm and sympathised with their frustration and helped them handle their emotions. So I guess in that case yes I soothed them but wouldn't try to solve the "problem" if the problem is they don't want to go to bed.
Mine is only 5 months so I don't have direct experience but I thought it was about not leaving them to cry rather than them never crying at all. I think when mine starts having tantrums I'll try to be present and sympathetic to their emotions rather than walk away or ignore.
So far my baby has only cried as long as it's taken me to get to her (i.e I might need to turn the hob off or finish on the loo), and that's rare since she usually does some winging first. Obviously there have been times when she's continued to cry even when comforted (wind, overtired, etc), but not much I can do there!
I think it depends on what you get though, people always comment on how content she is, if I had a colicky reflux baby, or twins, or toddler as well I might have trouble being so attentive. But basically I can't stand hearing her cry, it hurts my brain, so I could never do CIO or whatever.
I never let mines cry. As babies they practically lived in my arms and would sleep next to me in bed, if they started fussing I would breastfeed them. As toddlers, it's more acknowledging it is tough and giving a cuddle, maintaining a good routine so they don't get overtired helps. But both my 3 and 1 year old won't sleep on their own and my 1 year old still breastfeeds to sleep.
I think you're probably see in it as being some big thing that it's not.
It's just a simple thing really. I wouldn't leave a baby crying if I had the option to go to them and pick them up.
It doesn't mean giving into all tantrums or avoiding/needing to stop all crying the minute it starts right through childhood, it just means that I wouldn't choose to leave a child crying if I felt I had a choice.
I did soothe through tantrums, you don't have to give them what they want but acknowledging and having sympathy for their emotions is shown to be beneficial. I also didn't leave mine crying at bedtime which admittedly did mean I sat with him until he was about 4 which might not be everyones choice, but I didn't mind.
I really struggle to let mine cry as I can't stand the noise
Thanks for all the responses. I have done things quite differently to some of you, which I feel has worked well for us as a family (but that's not what I wanted to get into as everyone has their own way of parenting).
I do know that I need to be more consistent with my patience with my toddlers as sometimes I am able to sit with them and reason through their tantrum, other times I just can't deal with them! However, sometimes their tantrum is so bad that absolutely nothing works and the one in particular, just doesn't want anyone or anything near her when she really goes for it so I put her in a safe place and leave her to it. She always eventually comes for a cuddle in her own time, which of course is reciprocated
As for tears at bedtime, we have left them to cry (as long as we have gone through the usual checklist - toys, story, water, etc) however this happens rarely, thankfully, is usually just the one of them and is normally the result of a tantrum (and she's the one who doesn't like anyone near her in that state!)
one in particular, just doesn't want anyone or anything near her when she really goes for it so I put her in a safe place and leave her to it. That's different though - sometimes any interaction is just too much stimulation, one of mine was like this I would just say "I'm here for you when you want me" and she'd eventually come for a cuddle.
I remember what got me thinking about this now - it was when I was driving home a week or so ago and they were crying in the back of the car. I think it was over something so trivial - they wanted a biscuit or one had dropped her dummy into the footwell but I was on the motorway so couldn't do anything about it!!
I've never left mine to cry but crying is unavoidable
My Dd had colic, my Ds had cmpa so they both cried a lot.
But I soothed where I could, cuddled when needed etc
Now at 3 and 1 they both are happy healthy children. Dd occasionally has tantrums but it's very rare and I cuddle her when she wants it. She sleeps lovely and I have no issues.
Ds is 2 tomorrow and is still quite temperous but again I soothe when needed. He sleeps all night too and goes down without an issue
Haha, funnily enough I remember fretting and worrying about what on earth you'd do if you were driving and a baby was crying or needed to be fed, when I was pregnant! I posted on a forum to be met with much confusion and 'um... nothing?!'
Sometimes crying is just unavoidable.
lol I don't think the not leaving them to cry philosophy involves just stopping and getting out in the middle of the motorway. I'd probably say something soothing - almost all toddlers problems are "trivial" but can feel very important to them, but sometimes you can't drop everything the second the child is upset.
OK so when I read "I never let my DC cry" I'm taking it too literally!! thanks everyone, it makes a lot more sense than I'd been thinking!
Oh yeah, in the car... they sometimes cry and there's not much you can do about it. I'll talk, sing nursery rhymes loudly so they know I'm there. As mine have got to being toddlers they've each got much better at being in the car, thankfully!
Having twins is different! With my singletons I was very responsive, wore them in a sling, fed on demand etc, picked them up or cuddled them when they cried and always went to them at night, I'd never just leave them to cry themselves to sleep. With twins it's a bit unavoidable. I'd still never leave them to cry it out personally but if they start demanding milk when I'm trying to serve older kids tea, or one fusses while the other is being changed, what can I do? You prioritize and do your best.
All babies cry. If we could stop them we would! But no, I don't leave her to cry unless I have to.
All babies cry. Mine had colic so she cried A LOT. But I did everything I could to comfort her and stop her from crying. I can't really understand why you wouldn't? Obviously I needed to put her down to go to the toilet or make a drink etc, but I'd pick her up again straight away and talk to her etc. I never let her to cry just because it was nighttime. That makes no sense to me.
Now she is a pre schooler, if she has a tantrum, I don't pander to what she wants (e.g. Not go to bed). But I do try to help her manage her overwhelming emotions and I stay with her, I don't ditch her on the 'naughty step' (hideous idea) and ignore her.
If she kicks off (which is rare), I sit in the room with her, explain we are not going to do X because Y, that I understand she is cross/upset/sad/whatever, and that she can have a cuddle when she is ready. Then I sit quietly and read or whatever. She usually calms down in few minutes or so, and climbs on my knee for a cuddle. At which point we talk about what we can do when we start to feel angry, and why it's not nice for anyone to get so wound up.
Seems to be working so far. Her behaviour is lovely at pre school, I've never felt the need to 'punish' for anything or leave her to cry because she's upset.
You can show empathy when they are upset and comfort them when they are crying without being a total pushover. The two aren't mutually exclusive.
I think it will be interesting to revisit these babies in 10 years time!
Not leaving baby to scream for hours on end I can understand, endless negotiations and explanation to a toddler sounds mad tbh, without rewarding the behavior with cuddles at the end.
I think we are setting ourselves up for a generation of spoilt, entitled children who believe the world revolves around them.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.