Right, I've decided it's time to do something about dd's sleep. Please come help me decide what route to go down.(11 Posts)
DD is eight months old. She breastfeeds to sleep and wakes up for the first time half an hour after she goes to sleep. I spend my evenings up and down the stairs getting her back to sleep until I give up and go to bed and take her in with me. We've only been co-sleeping for about a month after I spent 3 nights in a row getting up every hour and spending half an hour getting her back to sleep.
So, I've now got two appointments booked, one with the local NHS clinic sleep trainer and another two days later with a private sleep clinic, which will cost us £185.
The NHS trainer will do controlled crying, it seems like there may be some leeway in how extreme to take it, but it will still be controlled crying.
The private clinic won't do cc. From what I can tell there will still be a fair bit of crying but dd won't be left alone in a dark room to cry at any point.
I can just about accept that it's going to be hard on dd to make these changes one way or another, but I don't think I can do cc.
I have the feeling that cc is a short sharp shock and the sleep clinic's method is a longer, more 'holistic', method, which could take weeks.
I realise from my OP it seems like the only downside to the private clinic is the cost, but I'm worried with it taking weeks that we'll get disillusioned and fall back into bad habits.
Have you tried anything else? Something gentler?
I couldn't do cc at any age and I don't think it's recommended for children younger than 12 months.
Why are you going along with this if it's something you don't want to do?
I'm going along to the NHS one really just to see if they have any advice other than cc, didn't want to jump into throwing money at the problem before seeing what else is available.
A few months ago I bought the No Cry Sleep Solution but found it very hard relating the general information in the book to our situation. Also with a sleep deprived head it's hard to read and take in the information then apply it stringently. The attraction of the sleep clinic is having someone come out to talk about the situation, give specific advice and plan everything out for us so I don't have to think!
I'm doing it because I need to sleep. (I realised yesterday that my definition of a good night's sleep is three hours in one block.) And I need to spend more than 20 minutes at a time talking to my husband in the evening. And after eight months I have a selfish need to have some kind of independent life - I want to go out!
At 8 months my DS reached his peak of horrendous sleep. He woke 22 times before midnight on one memorable night.
We started co-sleeping then and maintained a no cry gentle approach (much to DH's disgust ).
I found out on his 2nd birthday that we were expecting number 3 and made the moves to get him in his own cot. (Another long story)
He is now 2.7 and has slept through every night for about 1 month/ 6 weeks in his cot in his own room.
I realise that this might sound a long way off, but I am so happy with the way I approached it. DS is no longer a clingy child and is very self contained.
DH and I worked all the time we were doing this and looked after our DD. There were moments that the lack of sleep and clinginess were very tough going, but when I look back, I can still remember his early years with fondness.
I swore that cc wasn't for us. And it wasn't with dd1, it took 8 months to get anything like decent sleep (only waking twice a night) and a year to sleep through. Dd2 has just turned one. Once she actually slept she wasn't too bad but actually getting her to sleep was a nightmare. 2 weeks ago i had both dd's awake until 11 for 3 nights running. They share a room, it was getting ever more difficult to get dd2 to sleep (patting, rocking etc for up to 2hrs only for her to wake 30 mins later- never fell asleep on own). Dd1 started playing up, unsurprisingly. It was impacting on our entire life, i spent the day worrying about it, the evening sobbing. Out of desperation tried cc. First night it took an hour and a quarter (going in in intervals), 2nd night- an hour, 3rd night -50 mins, 4th night - 2mins and has been a doddle ever since. It's not for everyone, it is hard, still can't believe i did it but as a family our life has improved no end. And as an added bonus, dd2 now actually recognises that she's tired and comes and lays her head down on my lap. HTH.
This is the website for the private clinic:
Does it really look that bad?
Am I being suckered in by the name and the pictures of beautiful children sleeping?
If she sleeps well in with you why not do that? It's easier and cheaper and less stressful.
I am seriously against controlled crying for lots of reasons (to put my cards on the table) but even its most fervent advocates don't recommend it for under 1s.
I know this stage feels as if it'll last forever, but that's what it is, a stage. And it'll pass. Whatever you do it'll get better and you'll never really know whether it was whatever you did made it better or just the passing of time.
She doesn't sleep well with me though, that's the problem. It's better than with her in her own room as at least I'm in bed for the night, but I spend as much of the night awake and trying to get her back to sleep as I do actually sleeping. That good night's sleep I mentioned - three hours in once block? That happens one night in seven.
DD2 was a bad sleeper but things improved incredibly at about 8months. I stopped feeding her to sleep at night and within a week she was sleeping through. 2 months on still no problems. It's bliss. At night after her feed I put her in her cot awake and sat with her rubbing her back, making soothing noises with one of those musical projectors going. No crying - just a bit of whinging. It was quite easy, but I was convinced it would be hard. Don't get me wrong - I'm not naive. DD1 is still a terrible sleeper and this never worked for her. Just suggesting that it may not be as hard as you fear and if you can crack getting her to sleep at night it may improve the night wakings as it did for us. If you've already tried feel free to ignore! I hated it when people with good sleepers tried to advise me on DD1 when there was just no comparison!
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