Monday, April 29, 2013

Cry It Out??

In one of the many mom groups I'm in, one of the moms had posted that her baby doesn't sleep through the night (STTN). She just wanted to commiserate with other moms who know what it's like to be up at all hours of the night because baby still doesn't STTN. What she had said was that she just wanted to know that she wasn't the only one. Well, instead of people commenting and saying things like "They're only little once!" or "He'll sleep through the night eventually!", they were insisting that she needed to do CIO on the baby. A baby who is only 5 months old. Yep, you read that right. FIVE months old. 

One of the commenters had this to say:
So let me ask u this.... 1. Is he waking up to eat? 2. He is 6 months is he a healthy weight? 3. Have u tried sleep training? I was so tired and back to work I needed my baby to sleep. I use to nurse at 8 pm them 12am then 4am then 6 am. At 4 months wegot rid if the 2 am feeding. Sleep training 3 days if crying and a few hard nites for me. Then at 6 months we got rid if the 12 am feeding. Then he slept from 8pm to 4am. Then back to sleep. Have u tried anything like this? Every baby is so different but I couldn't give in.... I couldn't afford being up all nite. Good luck mama!

Remember, this baby is only 5 months old. The mom wrote this in response:
At next dr appt we are discussing sleep training. He's waking up to eat- not to snuggle. He houses the boobies! To all you moms out there that work and do this at night- you're my hero. Thanks for the sleep training tips.

Now, I don't know about you, but if my baby was waking up to eat, I sure as hell wouldn't be denying them food. This is a genuine case of the baby being hungry, as mom admits. I couldn't stay silent any longer, and I posted this:
 I guess I'm going to be the "bad guy" here to say this. But, babies should not be forced to STTN until they are ready. My daughter is almost 20 months old, and STILL does not sleep through the night. They will not STTN until they are ready. Cereal before bed won't help. Again, they will when they are ready. "Sleep training" is honestly nothing more than teaching your babies that you will not be there for them. The reason it feels so wrong when you subject them to it is because it's not natural. It goes against everything we are supposed to do, and that's to comfort them. They don't cry to be manipulative. They cry because they need something. Whether it's nutrition, or comfort. 
PLEASE read these links before deciding to CIO.

It definitely made me the bad guy because people left and right were bashing me for stating the truth. CIO is dangerous. It is terrible. Your baby cries and cries for you, and you ignore them. You are telling your baby that you don't care about them. That their needs aren't important. That you don't want to be bothered by them. And to me, it's irresponsible parenting. When you chose to have kids, you chose to sacrifice things- sleep being #1. If you are REALLY that tired, then you can hire a babysitter to watch your kid while you take a nap. Or ask your parents, in laws, siblings, or even your significant other.

What bothered me the most, is this screen shot I'm about to share. Whether you are pro-CIO or against it like I am, you can't read that and actually think it's okay. Remember, this baby is only FIVE months old.

Seriously?! Who puts in ear plugs AND turns the monitor off?! A friend and I were saying that she might as well have gone to a hotel. At least then, she would have gotten better sleep. She wouldn't have to worry about the ear plugs falling out. What really gets me is, what if something was GENUINELY wrong with the baby?  What if he got his leg stuck in the crib slat? What if he threw up and inhaled it? What if someone broke in? A fire started? Anything?! I can only hope that while she was being selfish, and ignoring that poor baby, that her husband went in there and consoled him.

I posted this picture on my personal wall, and on my FB page as well. I wanted to get reactions from parents to see what they think. I asked a friend to post on her page also. Almost everyone agreed that this was irresponsible and selfish. Another friend asked if she could post on her page. The comments she received surprised me. Some of them thought it was perfectly fine! I am just not sure I could ever agree with it.

I am well aware that we all have different parenting styles. I am well aware that what works for me may not work for you, and vice versa. And I try not to judge those who do things differently than I do. But some things that people do are just downright dangerous. I try to educate those around me about things I learned. I  welcome new information with open arms. I always strive to improve my parenting so that I can raise my kids to be successful, productive members of our society. When I see things that are dangerous, I feel the obligation to inform so that the parents/caretakers can take the measures necessary to improve the situation. I know, in a situation as such, this is something that a mandated reporter would HAVE to report. I'm sure people in the group are mandated reporters, and I am 100% sure that none of them reported her. As a matter of fact, everyone who commented after her congratulated her for making it through the night. I wonder how it would have went, if something tragic happened? Would people still congratulate her for getting her precious sleep? Would they congratulate her for not caving in, regardless?

Personally, I have done a modified CIO with my older 2. I never let them cry for longer than 10 minutes, max. But I did try to have my kids self soothe. It just didn't work, no matter how hard I tried. No matter how often we went through this at night. They never just laid down and went to sleep. Not until they were ready. It was like a switch. I can't recall their exact ages when they STTN, but they were a bit older than one. For the record, I did not attempt any modified CIO until they were closer to one. I would never do it to a baby younger than 10 months, and even then, it really depends on the baby. However, ear plugs in and monitor off? Not a chance.

I would love for your input on his. Leave a comment and let me know if you agree with CIO. Why or why not? Have you ever done it? How did it make you feel? Would you ever do it again?


  1. WTF! 5 months old, ear plugs and no monitor. That bitch needs smacked!

  2. wow.. all I can say is WOW. I WANT TO GO CRY NOW.

  3. wow :( This really makes me want to cry.

  4. Kristen, Love ya but I think you're completely 100% wrong on the issue of sleep training. We teach our kids to walk, talk, eat by themselves, play nicely with others....and we should teach our children to fall asleep and develop healthy sleep habits. I think that refusing to do so because it's hard makes someone an irresponsible parent. Now I do NOT believe in the extinction method (ear plugs, monitor off, etc) but that method is never necessary if mom begins sleep training (or sleep shaping as I've seen it more accurately descrived) from day 1 and adheres to basic principles to help a child learn to fall asleep. CIO is not necessary for most kids when done properly. And when it is necessary, it should be for no more than 10 minutes. And for that to work, it needs to be done EARLY. I got both my girls falling asleep in their own beds without a struggle by 12 weeks old. I nursed them through the night when they needed it and allowed them to STTN when they did not. Your post that you made in your group and shared here is incredibly offensive to working mothers who do not have the luxury of catering to a baby who doesn't sleep well. I am sick of people suggesting that if I wanted to work or sleep, I shoudln't have had children. Some of us choose not to raise children in poverty and cannot afford to do otherwise without two incomes. That doesn't make me or anyone else a bad mother. I'm a KICK ASS mother. And my girls are happy, healthy, and well-adjusted - which is more than a lot of people can say.

    1. WOAH. WOAH. We live on one income, and we DO NOT live in poverty. So no need to for a generalized statement. My daughter, fourth child, is nearing 3 months old. I do not practice CIO. I nurse her when she needs to because when she wakes up at night, she is HUNGRY or needs COMFORT. Because she is a BABY and that's what babies NEED.

      And also, I may not work outside the home, but catering to a baby who doesn't sleep "well" isn't a luxury. I am up bright and early with three other children while my husband is gone 5am-7pm for his first job.

      Perhaps, this mother should get out the No-Cry Sleep Solution.


Thanks for stopping by! I love to see your comments! Please remember to keep them family friendly! Spam comments will not be posted. Neither will comments that are insulting or degrading.