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if your baby cries to sleep at night, how long till s/he learned to sleep without crying?

(8 Posts)
MamaChocoholic Wed 07-Sep-11 08:48:09

I am not doing CC, but with twins (11mo), I need them to go to sleep in their cots. so I sit in the room with them, lie them down when they stand up, and sing/talk to them when they get upset. I am happy to do all this, but dt1 sometimes and dt2 in particular can cry for up to 20 mins before sleeping which I find distressing (and assume they do too). if I pick him up/feed him he calms down, but will still do the full 20 mins in the cot when he goes back, so it seems better NOT to pick him up, if that makes sense. if I leave the room (have ds1 too so sometimes unavoidable), they either get very distressed or start playing with each other.

but have been doing this for months now, and nearly every night still involves crying. they are tired, there is a short routine (book, feed, cuddles cot, singing). with CC people claim their babies go to sleep without crying within days, so why isn't that happening here?

CosmicMouse Wed 07-Sep-11 20:28:47

We've never done any form of sleep training with DD. But she did seem to need to just cry to get herself off to sleep. It was horrid, but I came to the same realisation as you that no matter what I did, she cried.

So, she was generally rocked to sleep and then put down. But she would still cry.

The crying turned into just grumbles and moans at some stage...but I couldn't tell you when. She's now 2.1 and goes to bed no bother most nights.

MamaChocoholic Wed 07-Sep-11 20:42:43

thanks CM. dt2 did used to cry to sleep even in a sling or my arms (his favourite place), and as a little baby couldn't feed to sleep because he'd cry too much. perhaps he is just like this, but it's horrible to watch.

We did what you do and DS1 is a brilliant sleeper now.

trinot Wed 07-Sep-11 20:50:03

I think your babies might be using crying as another form of attention...which is what all babies want and of course not a bad thing but at bedtime attention is not really what you need to be giving them.. I can understand that you don't want to do CC but I think maybe your approach is a little confusing.

They stand up, you give attention but putting them back down. They get upset and you sing to them and chat. They cry and you feel awful but I think it just another wee trick to get attention.

Have you looked into gradual withdrawl as a bedtime technique. It involves you still being in the room but cuts out all of the other interaction. I think if applied appropriately could lead to no crying at bedtime as it becomes a time of no attention but reassurance. Stress-free for them and you...hope this helps.

Lozario Thu 08-Sep-11 13:39:43

I agree with trinot (again!) - when I first read your post, I thought that the interaction they are getting might be encouraging them to play silly buggers!! I know with DS1, the more I went to him, the more he went nuts when I tried to leave again. In the end, I changed routine to story and milk, then lights out and put a CD of lullabies on, and out I went. He seemed to like that and was usually asleep by the time the CD ended! He goes to sleep fine now, we dropped the CD about a year ago (He's 2.3 now).

DD1 is the same whether I cuddle or rock or put her down to sleep - she grumbles a bit and then sort of goes "Argghhhhhhhh" like a pirate for ages. I think she likes the vibration on her chest or something!

With twins, I think you're definitely doing the right thing with getting them to sleep IN their cots - you're only one person and anything else is just too tricky.

MamaChocoholic Thu 08-Sep-11 21:07:10

I don't want to sound argumentative, and perhaps I didn't describe it very well. I try hard not to give attention.

Lying them down when they stand up, I literally lay them down, say "lie down, it's sleepy time", and walk back to my chair in the corner. It is necessary because if they both stand and catch each other's eye, they start playing peekaboo or copy cat, and get all excited and awake again. and of course, once they get into playing it takes a long time, and much more crying, to get them back in sleep mode. I ignore grumbly crying, but I do give attention, sing, try to soothe if they get properly distressed, and wouldn't be happy to ignore this.

within those limits I can try to ignore more, but I don't think it's possible to leave the room until both have decided to stay lying down in case they start playing or get really distressed (depending on how tired they are). I'd just like them to cry less before they go to sleep...

trinot Thu 08-Sep-11 21:59:20

I can see that it must be more difficult with twins, I have only done GW with single children. Although my friend just used it with her 1yr old and 2 year old who share a room and it worked well.

Is there anyway you could arrange your cots so the kids couldn't see each other?

The thing with GW is that you do almost what you are doing but just a little less interaction from you. So maybe if you are sitting in your chair and they start to play and giggle at each other, you just let them (better than crying) until they get bored and fall asleep. If they start to cry what I have done in the past is sit on the floor next to the cot with my arm through the bars but still giving no eye contact or anything verbal. I will sit there until they are calm, or asleep and slowly move away. It is the eye contact and talking that give the kids the 'attention' they are trying to get which is stopping them settling.

I think that if you give it a try it will work and the twin will be asleep in less time with less crying quite soon. I have done it with many children (my own and those who I have been a nanny for) and it has worked well.

definitely, lets not argue. I am trying to help.

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