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Controlled Crying, PU/PD or Gradual Withdrawal? Your experiences needed please

(41 Posts)
forevared Fri 05-Sep-08 09:49:24

Going to move ds2 into his own room tonight and plan on starting sleep training. Many friends recommended Richard Ferber's Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems but now I'm reading it, his progressive waiting method is surely just another name for controlled crying?!

Not sure if I've got the stomach for this as I'm already a bit over emotional what with severe sleep deprivation. DH wants to do this method as he thinks it's the most effective and quick but has agreed to compromise if I can find an alternative by tonight. (That makes him sound harsh - he's not. He's just tired too and is falling asleep at work so wants it sorted yesterday, typical man)

Anyway, I've looked at PU/PD and think that might be a good compromise and have also heard about gradual withdrawal but know nothing about it. Any advice from you lovely mumsnetters out there would be greatly appreciated.

Which method did you use? How long did it take to work? Blah blah blah...
I'm prepared to try anything, even the CC if I think it's not going to go on forever or damage my relationship with ds. Please help.

MrsMattie Fri 05-Sep-08 09:50:04

How old is your child?

forevared Fri 05-Sep-08 09:56:05

He's 6 months

forevared Fri 05-Sep-08 13:34:56

Anybody? Getting desperate!

cargirl Fri 05-Sep-08 13:36:24

I did pick up put down, but before you do that what are your ds sleep associations you need to crack that bit before you try getting him through the night IMO

DaddyJ Fri 05-Sep-08 13:44:42

You could try just sitting next to him,
saying shhh and stroking his face.

Or mix it up! Example:
Do the usual night time routine,
then give him some relaxing rocking first (as per usual),
then put him down and say night night, leave the room.
Listen to the cries (I presume he will protest) - angry, sad, hysterical or tired-grumpy? Your call, you the Mum.
Go back in after say 3 minutes, give him a cuddle until you feel comfortable putting him down again.
Depending on the crying first time around
sit next to him and do the shhh/stroke thing
or leave the room again for 5 minutes (i.e. do Controlled Crying).

Don't put yourselves under deadline pressures to do anything btw,
let alone Controlled Crying.

forevared Fri 05-Sep-08 13:53:34

We have to rock him to sleep. So cracking the sleep association IS part of the sleep training.

DaddyJ, I had wondered about doing a mixture of things and your suggestion was kind of what I had in mind. I think it's important to not change too much, so cuddling him for a minute or two but putting him down awake is a great idea. As is the rest of your post!

cargirl Fri 05-Sep-08 13:55:20

I would rock him until he is sleepy then hold him (without rocking) until he is asleep.

Once that is cracked then move onto cuddling him asleep - no rocking at all.

Then move onto cuddle until sleepy put down in cot - which is PU/PD

Poppycake Fri 05-Sep-08 13:59:26

We did sth similar to the Ferber with our two and found it worked well - but as with most things it comes down to how you and your baby want to do it! FWIW, I do think it's only fair to make clear to the little one that you are expecting him/her to go to sleep now, and if you keep coming in and bothering that isn't very clear. I used to sit in our room (next to baby room) and read while made sure dd was going down alright - I went with cross-crying is OK, because this is what she has to get over, but sad/frightened crying is not.

With our two cross-crying was the main type (and still is!) because they're awkward little blighters (like their parents!), but I think it all has to be tailored to the baby - it wouldn't have been right with a very delicate easily frightened one.

forevared Fri 05-Sep-08 14:26:03

Cargirl, I pretty much do that anyway, cuddle him to sleep, it's dh that rock's him. He just has to be in our arms.

Poppycake, the difference in crying makes a lot of sense so thanks for that. He doesn't really get cross, he's so laid back! I think we're more likely to get the sad crying, (bit of a softie mummys boy).

cargirl Fri 05-Sep-08 14:29:07

well hold him in your arms until he is relaxed then put him down, when he gets upset pick him up and cuddle him until relaxed again, put him down etc etc etc it will take time but it does work. I would start off doing it with daytime naps first when it is easier for you to cope with the crying!

reginaphilangy Fri 05-Sep-08 14:32:04

Wait and see what happens tonight.

My youngest dd was 9 months when we moved her into her own bedroom. She had never gone a full night without waking. She slept from 8 till 6 as soon as i put her in her own room!

Seems it was me, or the smell of me (breastfeeding) that was waking her.

DaddyJ Fri 05-Sep-08 15:03:18

forevared, you might find this old post useful. ('cross-crying' rang a bell..)

Good luck tonight!

forevared Fri 05-Sep-08 16:57:50

DaddyJ what is parental presence? Don't have time just at the mo to read all 16 pages!

DaddyJ Fri 05-Sep-08 17:32:25

lol the whole thread is a bit of a whopper,
in fact the post that I linked to is pretty long itself
but it echos the cross-crying business mentioned earlier.

parental presence = you stay with your lo

forevared Fri 05-Sep-08 18:58:38

Well, thanks for all your messages, it's been really helpful. Goin to go with a modified CC. Hope I don't crack.

DH plans on cooking a Thai curry tonight, rather ambitious! Mmmm, cold curry.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Stefka Sat 06-Sep-08 08:08:04

I didn't do anything until ten months and then I left him for five mins, check and comfort, ten mins, check and comfort then fifteen mins. IF he was still awake at that point then I would feed or rock or whatever but that only happened once. Usually I wouldn't get past the ten minute bit and after two days I didn't go past the five minute bit. IT wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be, took a few days and now he sleeps well. I can't tell you the difference it has made to my health to be able to get some sleep as he was waking up every two hours or less! Good luck with whatever you decide!

SquiffyHock Sat 06-Sep-08 08:12:37

how did it go?

Stefka Sat 06-Sep-08 08:19:20

PU/PD drove my DS nuts by the way - it was much worse than leaving him to cry for a bit. I think it frustrated him and I was getting in the way of him falling asleep. Even now I notice that if he wakes in the night and I pop in to comfort him and check he is ok he gets cross if I stay too long!

nowwearefour Sat 06-Sep-08 08:31:56

6 months is a rubbish age to sort this out in my view. i think before they are properly on solids and at this age they are starting to get hungry but digestive system still a bit rubbish. both mine were excellent sleepers until about 5.5 months and then again from 7-8 months. i would just carry on as you are for a little bit longer. anything is unlikely t work for a month or two and you will just get more stressed trying and failing. but then something WILL work i am sure of it - or he might sort himself out!! being ina diff room means you hear less anyway which helps i reckon!

FlightAttendent Sat 06-Sep-08 08:41:25

If only mine would be rocked to sleep!

I have to dangle my nipple in his mouth while gradually extracting myself from position beside him.

Can I ask why you are moving him into his own room at 6mo? It would be far easier imo to have him next to you in cot or even in the bed as even if he wakes, you wouldn't have to get up - I found the actual getting out of my bed the most awful thing. If they are next to you a) they settle better, wake less and b) you don't have to wake up properly to go to them!

Also puzzled as to why rocking him to sleep at this age is such a bad thing? I really can't understand. sad he is a pea barely out of the pod.

Softy mummy's boy really isn't something I would say about a 6mo baby btw!!

peachsmuggler Sat 06-Sep-08 08:56:01

forevared - just wondering how you got on?

We started PUPD a week ago and it has been a miracle! DD is 6 months and before we co-slept for 4 months then spent 2 months trying to get her to sleep in her cot which resulted in her only sleeping for about an our at a time and it was a nightmare getting her down in the evening so we would end up co-sleeping again. She was bf to sleep, almost every sleep, except for in the pram.

A week later she is going down in less than 30 mins (usually with only a couple of pick ups) and getting up 2 or 3 times during night but going straight back down.

It seems to depend on the temerament of your DC as I know some people find their DCs just get frustrated, but it worked for us with hardly any crying. When she cries, we pick her up and cuddle her. If your DC is as laid back as you say I think, it might work!

forevared Sat 06-Sep-08 12:59:29

I understand what you're saying nowwearefour but I just don't agree. I'm not hardhearted at all and have spent the last 7 or 8 weeks ensuring that it's NOT hunger or any other concern/need of his.

I'm doing something (I consider) drastic purely out of desperation, his need to sleep properly and ours. Yes, moving him into his own room may help somewhat, but it doesn't eliminate the fact that once he does wake he can't get himself back to sleep. I can either let this go on till he discovers how to (how long's a piece of string...) or I can do what most mothers do, human or otherwise, and help teach their child.

I'm not saying that hunger wasn't the reason for your los, but every child is different.

forevared Sat 06-Sep-08 13:08:25

Sorry to be ranting but this isn't a decision I've taken lightly.
Yes 6 months is little but I've barely slept in nearly 2 months and I'm getting depressed, I don't mean I'm a bit tearful, I mean depressed. I work in psychiatry so I'm well aware of child development and I'm not damaging him psychologically by moving him into his own room or by helping to settle himself to sleep.
In fact I could say the opposite, there's a wealth of evidence to say that by encouraging small bursts of independence whilst ensuring that lo knows you love and care for them at all times, they grow up to be happier, self assured children and adults with high levels of self esteem.

Rant over.

forevared Sat 06-Sep-08 13:20:44

Right, as for how it's going. I can't believe it's been this simple. I think we're being lulled into a false sense of security.

Put him down yesterday evening just before 8pm, and he cried on and off (mostly on)for about an hour. We went with the CC technique and went in every 3 minutes, then 5, then 10 till he fell asleep. Got him up at 11pm for his last feed. Straight back to bed and immediately asleep - at this point though he was practically falling asleep during his feed.

Woke at 3.20 cried for about 25 mins and fell asleep. Woke twice more in the night but settled himself both times before the 3 minutes were up for me to go in and reassure him!

Slept late this morning and had to wake him at 7.30 Back to bed for his morning nap just after 9am, took 15 mins to fall asleep and have now put him down for his lunchtime nap at 12.30 and he was asleep within 10 mins! Haven't heard him stir so far.

Thanks to all of you who have given support and advice, I still have my fingers crossed even though it's been good so far. Will keep you posted.

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