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"Cry it out," "sleep training," and other "progressive waiting," methods


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  #1  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:19 AM
JennaBee's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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What are your views on CIO (cry it out), "sleep training", "progressive waiting." methods. To help children learn to STTN (Sleep through the night) many parents have tried methods of CIO such as the Ferber Method.

"Parents are instructed to pat and comfort their baby after each predetermined period of time, but not to pick up or feed their baby." "After a few days to a week of gradually increasing the waiting time, the theory goes, most babies learn to fall asleep on their own, having discovered that crying earns nothing more than a brief check from you."

The Ferber method demystified | BabyCenter

Advocates of these methods say you "teach your baby to soothe himself to sleep " You are fostering healthy sleep habits. Where Sleep is an equal "need" as food and water is.

People who oppose it claim it is "Learned Helplessness" That "comfort" is a "need" and you are teaching your child their needs do not matter.

What are your opinions on CIO and other such methods???
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  #2  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:28 AM
*Jillian*'s Avatar Baby #3 on the way
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I think babies cry for a reason and I can't ignore my child's cries.

When my son was 13-15 months old we did our usual bath time, nursed, rocked and put him down. He would sleep for 30 minutes and then be up every hour on the hour. I started going in and putting him down again and walking out. I would do 5 minutes out and 2 minutes in. It took a week, but he learned that I was right there and would come back for him if he needed me. I don't view this as ignoring his needs, but teaching him that he can go back to sleep and know that he will not be ignored if he needs me. I was dedicated and it would take me hours of going back and forth, but I wouldn't let him cry himself to sleep. I couldn't.

I would never do that method with a child under a year old...and I wouldn't have had to do it if I wasn't worried about his health.

Ferber just wants you to ignore your kids. I can't do that until they are at least 3

ETA: Crying agitates a child and that isn't healthy. I can't imagine letting my child cry until they realized nobody was coming for them. That's so sad to me.
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  #3  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:32 AM
JennaBee's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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"Cry it out. In the preface of the new book, Ferber takes pains to clarify his position: "Simply leaving a child in a crib to cry for long periods alone until he falls sleep, no matter how long it takes, is not an approach I approve of. On the contrary, many of the approaches I recommend are designed specifically to avoid unnecessary crying." Ferber's "progressive waiting" technique encourages parents to frequently comfort their child during the sleep training process." From: The Ferber method demystified | BabyCenter
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  #4  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:35 AM
*Jillian*'s Avatar Baby #3 on the way
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Since I can't read the new book, I don't see what age he recommends starting these methods. When I had my son almost 4 years ago I remember thinking there was NO WAY I would let my small baby cry and cry like that.

My child was over a year old when I would go back and forth. He had some really crazy sleep habits. We worked on them. He sleeps 12-13 hours a night now.
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  #5  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:36 AM
angelsailor288's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I like the super nannys style of 'cry it out' or whatever you want to call what she does. Infants I believe should be attended to at every cry. Toddlers, not so much. They can self soothe.
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  #6  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:37 AM
*Jillian*'s Avatar Baby #3 on the way
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To clarify my position: I think he suggests these methods for children that are entirely too young to understand.
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  #7  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:40 AM
mommabirdof4
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Would never ever use any of those methods with my children...period...it goes against everything I do on a daily basis to parent my children.
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  #8  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:43 AM
BittyBugsMama's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I don't believe in it and I don't do it. Little ones (under 3 or so) cry for a reason and I will not allow my child to cry while I am fully able to tend to them. I'm very into attachment parenting and raising my children to feel secure, loved and taken care of. For me personally (this is not a blanket statement) I would feel wrong doing it because I wouldn't feel like I was comforting my child when he / she needed it.
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  #9  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:45 AM
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Not for me at all. But then I co-sleep.
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  #10  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:46 AM
JennaBee's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *Jillian* View Post
Since I can't read the new book, I don't see what age he recommends starting these methods. When I had my son almost 4 years ago I remember thinking there was NO WAY I would let my small baby cry and cry like that.

My child was over a year old when I would go back and forth. He had some really crazy sleep habits. We worked on them. He sleeps 12-13 hours a night now.

"In a nutshell, Ferber says you can teach your baby to soothe himself to sleep when he's physically and emotionally ready, usually sometime between 4 and 6 months of age. He recommends following a warm, loving bedtime routine and then putting your baby in bed awake and leaving him (even if he cries) for gradually longer periods of time. Putting a child to bed awake, says Ferber, is crucial to successfully teaching him to go to sleep on his own."

from: The Ferber method demystified | BabyCenter
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  #11  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:49 AM
*Jillian*'s Avatar Baby #3 on the way
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JennaBee View Post
"In a nutshell, Ferber says you can teach your baby to soothe himself to sleep when he's physically and emotionally ready, usually sometime between 4 and 6 months of age. He recommends following a warm, loving bedtime routine and then putting your baby in bed awake and leaving him (even if he cries) for gradually longer periods of time. Putting a child to bed awake, says Ferber, is crucial to successfully teaching him to go to sleep on his own."

from: The Ferber method demystified | BabyCenter
Yeah, that's what I remember. That's nuts. Phsycially and emotionally ready at that age? Not at my house. Babies can be babies.

And Alicia, 3 year old cry for no reason. I'm sending mine to your house so you can get a dose of the "3 year old fake cries!" LOL!
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  #12  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:50 AM
JennaBee's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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For those that feel that they wouldn't be denying them "the comfort they need."

Is sleep considered a "need"? People in favor of CIO feel they are "helping children form healthy independent sleep habits" Is sleep considered as justifiable a need as comfort?
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  #13  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:53 AM
*Jillian*'s Avatar Baby #3 on the way
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JennaBee View Post
For those that feel that they wouldn't be denying them "the comfort they need."

Is sleep considered a "need"? People in favor of CIO feel they are "helping children form healthy independent sleep habits" Is sleep considered as justifiable a need as comfort?

Sleep is a need. Making a baby that age feel like they are abandoned so they just sleep isn't necessary. Some babies that age just like to be held. I parent that way.

Now, when my 15 month old never wanted to sleep, I could reason and talk to him. He knew mommy was right there and he eventually learned he was upset for nothing.
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  #14  
May 23rd, 2011, 10:56 AM
BittyBugsMama's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *Jillian* View Post
Yeah, that's what I remember. That's nuts. Phsycially and emotionally ready at that age? Not at my house. Babies can be babies.

And Alicia, 3 year old cry for no reason. I'm sending mine to your house so you can get a dose of the "3 year old fake cries!" LOL!
I said 3 or so +/- a couple months here and there. Dude cries sometimes because he was told no or something, but I'm thinking like legitimate crying. The kind of cry where you can hear they need you, ya know?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JennaBee View Post
"In a nutshell, Ferber says you can teach your baby to soothe himself to sleep when he's physically and emotionally ready, usually sometime between 4 and 6 months of age. He recommends following a warm, loving bedtime routine and then putting your baby in bed awake and leaving him (even if he cries) for gradually longer periods of time. Putting a child to bed awake, says Ferber, is crucial to successfully teaching him to go to sleep on his own."

from: The Ferber method demystified | BabyCenter
Lil Miss is 5 month old in 2 days. There is NO WAY I would ever think she is emotionally ready to be left in a crib by herself and let her cry until she falls asleep out of exhaustion. That dude is a nut job.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JennaBee View Post
For those that feel that they wouldn't be denying them "the comfort they need."

Is sleep considered a "need"? People in favor of CIO feel they are "helping children form healthy independent sleep habits" Is sleep considered as justifiable a need as comfort?
Sleep is very much a need, but so is contact with their parents and comfort they gain from that. We co sleep, which has been shown to create more self satisfied and confident children. I'd post the study but I'm literally walking out the door for work right now.
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  #15  
May 23rd, 2011, 11:03 AM
*Jillian*'s Avatar Baby #3 on the way
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I believe that co sleeping is great for that and I also think that tending to them when they need you is just as effective. Heck, I still went in and nursed my kid 3-4 times a night when he was 18 months old. He slept longer stretches right after that time period. I was happy when he slept 4 hours straight! lol He was bad!!!!

Now he tells me to put him down and close the door when it is bedtime. And to think...I held him constantly, nursed him several times a night and didn't make him feel like he was alone! Crazy!! lol
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  #16  
May 23rd, 2011, 11:06 AM
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I don't believe in CIO, controlled crying, or anything like that. I don't think children need to learn how to sleep, I think they will STTN when they are biologically ready and that is usually between 18 months and 5 years.

Babies and even kids cry for a reason. Sometimes it is because they are hungry, wet, etc. and sometimes it is because they are scared or sick. I can't ignore my children's cries no matter what age they are, that goes against everything I believe in as a parent.

ds1 started to STTN at 20 months. He went from waking up every 2 hours to adjust or get a drink to 12 hours straight. He still sleeps 12 hours straight. ds2 is 13 months and wakes up every 2 hours to eat. I assume he'll start to STTN within the next year or shortly afterwords. We co-sleep until they wean themselves (usually around 3 years of age) so a lot of these sleep problems we don't have to deal with.

I think comforting your child, no matter what age, when they cry helps them be independent and confident. I think making your baby/child cry themselves to sleep is unhealthy and stressful to that child.

BBC News - Crying-it-out 'harms baby brains'

The Con of Controlled Crying - The Natural Child Project
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Last edited by HappyHippy; May 23rd, 2011 at 11:08 AM.
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  #17  
May 23rd, 2011, 12:00 PM
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BALANCE!!! As a new mom i've been inundated by camps of "momisms". Before I had a baby I had my own private opinions about how babies could be spoiled or neglected or whatever. After coming to JM to actually try to learn about these small two legged creatures I came to find out a few things.

1. What works for one baby or family doesnt mean it will work for your baby or your family.

2. Many of the things we obsess over as moms (co-sleeping, CIO, AP vs. Traditional, CD'ing etc) in the end have very little frikkin' impact in bigger scheme of things. Ive known very well adjusted adjults that were products of hippie and traditional conservative upbrining... known adults that were CIO kids and ones that were not - and all of them extremely sucessful individuals.

I'm fortunate to not have to (yet anyways! i never say never!) need to even worry about the whole sleep training thing because I have the easiest kid in the world. He hardly ever cries- and when he does it's cause he is hungry. Easy peasy! I know however that is often times NOT the case! I know of some moms in my PR that have never thought they would use sleep training/CIO and have been saved by it and have happy babies that care about them deeply. I try not to judge when it comes to things like this. Different strokes for different folks.
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Last edited by razzledobe; May 23rd, 2011 at 12:03 PM.
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  #18  
May 23rd, 2011, 12:02 PM
JennaBee's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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BBC News - Crying-it-out 'harms baby brains'
"Dr Leach suggested unattended extreme crying bouts of 30 minutes or more could be damaging to babies.

The Ferber method demystified | BabyCenter

"Ferber never says you should simply leave your baby in his crib and shut the door behind you. His progressive waiting approach allows you to gradually limit the time you spend in your child's room while providing regular comfort and reassurance — as well as reassuring yourself that he's okay.


***

The Con of Controlled Crying - The Natural Child Project
"Babies who are forced to sleep alone (or cry, because many do not sleep) for hours may miss out on both adequate nutrition and sensory stimulation such as touch," (see the same Babycenter quote above as well)

What age defines a "baby" is there an age where crying is acceptable?

This article refers to HOURS of unattended crying.
How long is too long? Is there an "appropriate" amount of time to allow a child to cry? Is a 10 minute tantrum screaming in the car because they do not like the car seat the same as 10 minutes crying in the crib? Both instances they cannot be immediately tended to.

"Leaving a baby to cry evokes physiological responses that increase stress hormones." this occurs at every instance of prolonged crying. Is there a difference between the amount of "possible damage" of a child throwing a half hour long tantrum or other situations, perhaps a car ride, or doctors office visit and a half hour long CIO in bed?
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  #19  
May 23rd, 2011, 12:05 PM
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Not having kids, it's hard to put into my words exactly my stance. I guess I sort of sit on the line in the middle and stagger like a drunk as I walk along it.

But I don't believe in leaving a child unattended to cry in their crib. A crying baby of any kind breaks my heart. But that doesn't mean I'm going to scoop up a child the second they start crying and rock it to sleep.

I guess it really depends on the childs personality. I've seen kids of all types. One of my brothers didn't like to be held when he was tired. He liked to be laying down (back in the day when on the belly was the way of life) and have his bottom lightly patted by a hand for a few minutes. My cousin on the other hand, needed someone with her, holding her, or touching her until she'd fall asleep, if you tried to leave before she was totally asleep, you'd have to start over. Longest with me was 2 hours... After that I used to get comfy in the recliner so we could both sleep. She was almost two at that point so she would follow me around crying because she wanted to sleep, but NEEDED another being (along with her pile of lovees) to comfort her to the point of sleeping. She wouldn't even sleep in the car unless someone was touching her. I know other people who could do the bath, feed, diaper, crib, go about their night with no issues. (I one day hope to be one of those people, but I expect it'll be more like my cousin...)

For some children, there is probably a point where enough is enough and they need to be taught to sleep on their own. As for exactly when that is... I don't know because it varies from child to child. Everyone will find something that works for them, and as long as they aren't abusing the child in the process I think most methods would ok in my books.
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  #20  
May 23rd, 2011, 12:07 PM
HappyHippy's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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When I browse forums and read the CIO/CC threads most of them say they leave their baby cry for 1 hour. Some even say it's 3 hours first night, 2 hours the second and 1 hour the last night and then the next time they are STTN without any crying (not sure if I believe that though, but I guess it's possible). I think that if you lay down your baby and he screams and you go in at 5 minutes and then leave again and keep repeating it would be stressful to the baby. I know I would get stressed if that was happening to me.
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