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controlled crying questions

(15 Posts)
reastie Sat 01-Oct-11 20:55:16

I don't want judgement that I shouldn't be doing this confused . I'd really appreciate some advice on these questions as I'm a bit clueless on cc and DH and I have decided to try it.

1- how do you know when LO is tired enough to put her in her cot? Sometimes she seems a bit tired but won't go to sleep for a while so I'm not sure whether to wait until I think she is ready to go to sleep or shove her in at the first sign of tiredness

2-If she wakes up in the night - should I pick her up to check nappy/offer feed or just leave her crying for a set time and then pick her up to do checks if she doesn't self settle?

3- I assume I do the same techniques for day time naps too?

4- How do I know if she's crying because she just wants me and can't self settle or if she really does need something or is teething etc?

5- How long should I give it before I know if this technique is going to work? (DH and I were thinking of giving it a week)

6- Is there a max length of time I leave her crying before stepping in or do I just go for it potentially all night?

NoNoNoMYDoIt Sat 01-Oct-11 20:58:35

how old is she?

reastie Sat 01-Oct-11 21:06:53

opps, sorry forgot to say blush she's 7 mo

NoNoNoMYDoIt Sat 01-Oct-11 21:42:17


1. depends how much of a routine you have. at 7 months my 2 were getting up at 7 - 8, having an hour's nap from 9.30 to 10.30 and then 2 - 3 hour nap from 12.15. then bed at 7pm (and a dream feed at 1030). so roughly speaking up for 2 hours; asleep for an hour; up for 2 hours; asleep for 2 hours; up for 4 -5 hours. then bed.

i didn't wait for cues really. i just went on elapsed time since last nap. it depends, though, on why you are wanting to use CC to get them to sleep. i used CC with my 2 to get them to go to sleep at the end of the day when i KNEW they were tired, as they were both 2 when i used it and they had had no day-time sleep. i wouldn't want to use CC if i wasn't SURE that the child was tired. so perhaps that's an issue for you?

2. depends. (it always depends!). my DD (2) is an infrequent night-waker. so if she does wake, i do go and check her nappy. but if you are used to regular calls at night and it is happening every couple of hours, then i would probably not check. i also wouldn't use CC unless i was SURE that the child wasn't hungry. i stopped offering a night feed when my DD was waking for a feed in the middle of the night and then refusing all other feeds for 10 hours after that. i was sure in that case that, if she could go 10 hours between her feed at 1am and her next feed at 11am, she was capable of going from her 1030pm dreamfeed until 7am the next morning. so i didn't feed her one night when she woke at 1am, she settled within half an hour and didn't wake for a feed again. with a 7 month old, you probably don't need to be as consistent with your verbal message as you do with a 2yr old. but yes - decide what you want to do, then do it. and do only that. so if you pat, then pat. if you talk only, then talk only.

3. i haven't used CC for daytime naps but yes, i imagine same setting, same message

4. if i knew the answer to that, i would be a very rich woman

5. took me 3 nights with DS aged 2. a little longer with DD but she was a slightly tougher cookie. a week should be more than enough at that stage

6. i took the approach of: starts crying: go to check no arm stuck thru cot bar; not lost blankie - say night night and leave: 1 min later - go in - say night night and leave; 2 min later - go in - say night night and leave; 3 min later - go in - say night night and leave; etc etc. so each time increasing time out of room by 1 minute.

the thing is, at some point, they stop crying. you think - phew that's it. then they start again, and you think - do i restart the clock now or does the elapsed time mean i need to go back in...

basically - you do learn to differentiate in the cry between the frantic and the trying it on. eventually.

it is THE hardest thing to do. sometimes, though, needs must.

i have done this with 2 of mine (albeit it at age 2 and only to get them to go to sleep in the evening), and it did work. but it was fairly horrid.

gapants Sat 01-Oct-11 21:47:11

CC is not recommended for babies for less than 1 year old, have you tried a different method yet?

reastie Sat 01-Oct-11 21:54:18

thanks, dd used to sleep in her moses basket/cot and would self settle and basically be a fab baby. Somehow (must be my fault) she now feeds to sleep, will only sleep on me/dh/carseat/buggy/lying next to me on my bed for daytime naps. In the evening she will only go to sleep lying next to me on our bed and I move her to her cot after her dream feed at 9:30. She can and does sometimes self settle at night but it's quite common for dh to have to rock her in his arms to get her back to sleep. We are just finding her increasibgly difficuly to settle and it's just getting worse and worse. I never get a minute to do anything in the day as she won't let me leave the room without her crying when she's playing and then she won't go to sleep without me. DH is getting back ache from all his rocking, we get no time together anymore and I can't take her for a walk 3 times a day in the winter when it's tipping it down with rain/snow to get her to sleep. Something has to change and we think this is the thing we need to try - dd is very knowing and tbh you can't blame her for her crying etc as she knows we will give in and she gets a nice cuddly time with us. We are going to go for it possibly starting tomorrow hence looking for some advice (and positive stories)

freybean Sat 01-Oct-11 21:55:02

i've started to follow this, like No said its bloody hard but on the first night dd (same age) took 30mins to get herself to sleep.

have to say that i'm so glad that i've started it as dd wasn't sleeping and was really grumpy during the day but after the first night, she was so much happier during the day

good luck

freybean Sat 01-Oct-11 21:56:24

just read your last post op, sound the same as my dd

reastie Sat 01-Oct-11 21:56:56

ga we've tried patting, rocking, singing, music, a blankie, shushing, leaving her to cry for a set time before seeing to her. We feel like we've tried everything but if you have any suggestions they will be welcomed (in the hope we haven't tried it). We just want her to self settle in her cot for naps/at night. Btw why is it not recommended below 1yo? I thought sleeping strategies in general were OK at over 6mo? [clueless]

Blueberties Sat 01-Oct-11 21:56:58

I did it with one but not any others because it's so hard. You really have to time the crying because 10 seconds feels like 10 minutes. There's an Australian paediatrician called Green I think who gives good techniques.

reastie Sat 01-Oct-11 21:58:15

thanks fre have bookmarked that link pending a good read of it tomorrow

freybean Sat 01-Oct-11 22:10:50

i know i'm going to sound cruel, but like you i had tried everything. even got to the stage where i brought a bottle of whiskey ready to put in her bottle (i never have tho)

but once i know she is ready for bed then i take her to her cot, get her settle then i have a list of jobs that need doing around the house just so i'm not sitting there hearing her. so once i've done one job, i'll go and check

gapants Sat 01-Oct-11 22:22:41

op sorry, don't want to undermine you at all, and of course you need to do what is best for you and your baby.

Also, i feel your pain, DS was terrible at sleeping, we cut out the night feeds at 11m and co-slept for about a month while we were doing that, then we went for a sort of combo of shush, shush, pat, pat/gradual retreat/CC. I used to take him for a walk in a sling every night at 7pm to get him to sleep. I have a very vivid memory of walking round the village in the pouring rain, my jeans soaked through despite having a golf umbrella. sigh

i think that until they are 1 (ish) they would feel insecure and stressed out by being left to cry and do not understand why they are being left.

i liked and use the Millpond Sleep Clinic book, have a look here

i found that reading the case studies, my DS needed a sort of combination of things.

reastie Sun 02-Oct-11 03:51:28

thanks frey and ga . Things sleep wise getting worse and worse (see time of post!). We've been on holiday last week where she hasn't settled all night without dh or I. We thought it was a holiday thing but she's still like it - DH has been up since 11pm with her only sleeping on him and not in her cot, she's just finally gone to sleep on my bed but I'm just about to move her into her cot - we can't keep doing this as we are both more tired than when she was a newborn! I think we have to start this cc tomorrow as I can't take much more hmm

Graciescotland Sun 02-Oct-11 08:45:50

It may be that she's gearing up for the next developmental milestone. Rolling over/ crawling/ standing etc. DS found it really hard, even when tired, to drop off at that stage.

I do CC but only at night after he's been fed and cuddled and it really is time for sleep but he seems to get a second wind and wants to play. I only leave him for ten minutes, return, we snuggle on the bed and I feed him again. Normally he drops off after one cycle of this and I put him in the cot. However the first night I needed to do it three times (he was eight months), down to once/ not needed within the week.

If he wakes up properly, sustained cry for fifteen seconds as opposed to a random wail, then I go to him, bed, cuddle, feed, check nappy, teeth etc I'll stay with him until he goes back to sleep (DH has a stressful job and needs to sleep whereas I can can catch up).

If he's unwell/ teething it can be difficult but normally he'll sleep through from 8pm- 6am

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