This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Do babies learn to self sooth without teaching them?(14 Posts)
Just as the title says really? Everything I've read says about 'teaching' babies to fall asleep on their own but will they all do it naturally in time? I know I'm not going to be rocking DS to sleep when he's 10 years old but what about when they're 2-3ish?
I reckon it's developmental. My first did start sleeping through and falling asleep on her own without training. The issue is that it might not happen soon enough to suit the parents, for example if they are both back at work with a baby or toddler who wakes a lot in the night.
I think some of it is personality. Two of mine hated being held or any fussing when they were tired from being a few days old.
They preferred to lie on their own and kind of groan and grizzle themselves to sleep. At first I thought this would end up in crying so picked them up but quickly learned that if I picked them up it resulted in screaming, if I left them they'd eventually nod off.
I have read that it can be a sensory thing.
My other two were happier to have snuggles but I also worked on putting them down to sleep.
All four have been really good at going to bed. Any wakings were usually beautifully timed for when my head eventually hit the pillow
I think it depends on the child. Ds1 definitely needed to be taught, ds2 was always fairly random but got there in the end, ds3 could self settle in specific situations so needed a bit of encouragement to generalise the skill!
Depends on the child. DS was always pretty good at putting himself to sleep, and can be kissed and left now (he's 3). DD is 6 and sucks at putting herself to sleep, she loathes sleeping and always has. I can't count how many hours of my life I've spent trying to get her to go the fuck to sleep 😫
DS did. I'd been rocking/patting/singing him to sleep for ages and it was taking a long time. One day, I asked his nursery key worker how they got him to sleep and they said they just put him down and walk away and he falls asleep. So I tried it and he did absolutely that. Certainly nothing he was taught by anyone! That was at about 14 months although he might well have done it before!
@SnuggyBuggy work is one of my issues. I was planning on going back part time in January but my commute is a bitch and there's no way I'd be safe to drive after most of the nights we have!
You kinda have to give them a chance to try it. If you always go straight to rocking/feeding/whatever, you'll never know if they can do it or not. And the longer you leave it (ie 2 or 3) the more used to your method they are, and the more likely they are to resist change.
My first would fall asleep alone by about 20 months, my second is nearly 2 and I have to rock him to sleep whilst saying night night to everyone he knows including pigs, sheep, rock; tree...!
I also think it depends on the child. DS self settled from quite early on, we didn't do anything in particular, actually I had a stomach bug and popped him in the moses basket whilst I lay down on the sofa. I was fully prepared to pick him up if needed, but sure enough he dozed off, and since that point he seems to have self settled- he hadnt had the chance before I suppose! But we didn't do anything in particular, I imagine most learn by some age but it can vary wildly.
We played the long game with DS - worked on it very gradually over a year! Went from
co sleeping feeding to sleep at 1 to putting him into cot and saying goodnight at 2. Not a single tear was shed and he has slept through every night since 2 (woke loads at 12 months and was down to 1 wake up from 14 months to 2). We could probably have done it quicker but tbh it was easy for us and felt right for DS.
Yes mine did around 2 after being a terrible sleeper. I've never left her to cry and she's brilliant now.
Yes. Rocked to sleep til 16 months or thereabouts with all of mine. Then cuddled to sleep for several months, then quick cuddle and sit on end of bed... then sit on step. All then fell asleep on their own easily. Now we just put them to bed and leave.
I’m proud we’ve never left any of them to cry.. if you’re patient there’s no need
My health visitor recommended the book 'teach your child to sleep' as ds1 was a shocking sleeper and i was desperate! It is a very practical book and not at all 'preach'y.