Attachment Parenting

Anyone regret not CIO?

I used to come to this board a lot when my DS1 was young.  He was a terrible sleeper.  Would only sleep on me for 6 weeks, only in his swing for a few months after that and up all night forever.  We did a little sleep training at 6 months and a few times after that for night time and he did eventually start to sleep through the night around 14 months or so (not all the time and he still doesn't sleep through now) but we never did it for naps.  We used to rock him when he was in the crib and after we switched him to a bed we would lay with him until he fell asleep.  This, obviously could take forever.  Sometimes over an hour.  A little before 2 years of age he stopped falling asleep when we layed with him (would when other people did but not my husband and I).  We got into the habit of driving him to sleep since I was so pregnant and had a newborn and needed that time.  He has now started fighting these naps like no other and I feel so lost.  I actually wouldn't mind the no nap because I would start having him watch a show or something and have a little rest time but he needs the nap and is MISERABLE as the day goes on.  I feel like I really hurt him.  He has no ability to put himself to sleep during the day.  He just gets more and more ramped up the more tired he gets.  I feel like I should have done some sleep training when he was younger.  If we go away, it's a nightmare.  He'll be up until midnight or later and just act crazy.  He's starting to act very hyperactive and I know a lot of it is toddler but a lot of it is exhaustion.  I'm just really starting to regret not doing anything with him when he was younger.  He was just to high strung for any of the "gentle" methods to work.  :(

Re: Anyone regret not CIO?

  • At nearly 21 months, no, I haven't yet had any regrets.

    Yes, she went through the same phase of not falling asleep well with us in bed (once she stopped nursing to sleep).  But I stay in there with her until she naps (it's taken as long as two hours).  I can't make her sleep, but I can make her stay laying down, and that is what I do.  (It didn't take long with her trying to walk around, stand up, or sit up, to learn that she had to remain laying down.)  Eventually she sleeps.

    Right now, I generally stay in there with her (we still bedshare, with a mattress on the floor next to the master bed, if you will :) ) until she falls asleep.  Sometimes, if she won't settle (keeps kicking her legs, for instance), I leave for a few minutes (right outside the door), telling her that I can only stay with her if she is laying down, closing her eyes, being still, and trying to go to sleep.  She's complained (the "this is not what I want" sort of cry) for a minute or two, and I generally don't stay out longer than that, but I leave again if she doesn't settle down.  It's been working.  And sometimes she actually does fall asleep on her own. 

    But I do not let her get out of bed until she's had a nap.  (And, I think, she's finally starting to learn that.)

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  • image TiffanyBerry:

    At nearly 21 months, no, I haven't yet had any regrets.

    Yes, she went through the same phase of not falling asleep well with us in bed (once she stopped nursing to sleep).  But I stay in there with her until she naps (it's taken as long as two hours).  I can't make her sleep, but I can make her stay laying down, and that is what I do.  (It didn't take long with her trying to walk around, stand up, or sit up, to learn that she had to remain laying down.)  Eventually she sleeps.

    Right now, I generally stay in there with her (we still bedshare, with a mattress on the floor next to the master bed, if you will :) ) until she falls asleep.  Sometimes, if she won't settle (keeps kicking her legs, for instance), I leave for a few minutes (right outside the door), telling her that I can only stay with her if she is laying down, closing her eyes, being still, and trying to go to sleep.  She's complained (the "this is not what I want" sort of cry) for a minute or two, and I generally don't stay out longer than that, but I leave again if she doesn't settle down.  It's been working.  And sometimes she actually does fall asleep on her own. 

    But I do not let her get out of bed until she's had a nap.  (And, I think, she's finally starting to learn that.)

    I have a little one at home too now (4 months) so staying in bed like that isnt an option.  :( 

  • I will be honest, I regret not doing CIO at times. My son is 20 months old and I still nurse/rock him to sleep. He wakes up every 45 minutes to two hours at night, every night. We bedshare and he nurses all night. Sometimes it feels natural and sometimes it feels insane. He naps for 45 minutes to an hour after nursing, but will nap much longer if I hold him/lay with him. We have made it work, but sometimes I get angry and resentful because I sacrifice a lot of personal time, time with my hubby, and my own sleep. Those are the times I wish I'd had the strength to do CIO when he was much younger. I'm also insanely jealous of people with kids who are naturally good sleepers, especially those who never had to do CIO (I know a few).

    Only thing is, I also honestly don't know if CIO would work for my son, who is very strong-willed (like yours). One night when he was a year old, I was sick and couldn't nurse/rock him like normal. My DH and I tried a variety things to get him to fall asleep on his own, including letting him cry off and on for a few hours. He didn't fall asleep until 6 am the next day!!!!! And that was with me rocking him, still not on his own. He has also cried for up to 3 hours in the car. Once a month we drive to visit our family in another town, we leave when my DH gets off work and as it approaches my son's bedtime he just cries and yawns and cries and yawns. From infancy he gets so worked up when he's left to cry for any reason that he'll throw up. I guess I could have done CIO and tried to push through that like Ferber says, but I just couldn't do it.

    That said, I am thinking about trying Dr. Jay Gordon's method of night weaning when he turns two. We'll see what happens. I want to have another baby but feel like I can't with my son as needy as he is with sleep.  But I don't want to put our plans to expand our family on hold either. I totally feel for you, with a new baby.

    I am also terrified that our next kid will be the same way! I may consider using Ferber's methods with our next child. I'm not sure if I can go through all this again.

    Know you are not alone! Have you read "Sleepless in America" by Mary Sheedy? She has some pretty great ideas for helping older kids wind down and sleep, it's definitely worth the read and could possibly help you. She is an expert in "spirited children." After we (hopefully) night wean I plan to try some of her ideas.I hope you can hang in there! You sound like a strong and wonderful mama!

  • Sometimes I wonder if DS1 would be a better sleeper if we had done the CIO method. But often I look back and think about the nights we had the most trouble and he was often sick or getting sick. Or teething, or something new was happening. When he is feeling well and we are on a good routine, he doesn't have as many sleep problems. That said we did do the sleep lady shuffle. It is sleep training but way more gentle. It has been pretty effective. But we still bedshare and I often nap with him too. With DS2, he is so far a better sleeper than DS1. We are thinking of doing the sleep lady shuffle way earlier with him and hope that he continues to sleep better. I would definitely read different books and try different methods to see what will work. Your LO definitely needs his sleep as does the rest of you. GL!
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  • image monalua:

    I will be honest, I regret not doing CIO at times. My son is 20 months old and I still nurse/rock him to sleep. He wakes up every 45 minutes to two hours at night, every night. We bedshare and he nurses all night. Sometimes it feels natural and sometimes it feels insane. He naps for 45 minutes to an hour after nursing, but will nap much longer if I hold him/lay with him. We have made it work, but sometimes I get angry and resentful because I sacrifice a lot of personal time, time with my hubby, and my own sleep. Those are the times I wish I'd had the strength to do CIO when he was much younger. I'm also insanely jealous of people with kids who are naturally good sleepers, especially those who never had to do CIO (I know a few).

    Only thing is, I also honestly don't know if CIO would work for my son, who is very strong-willed (like yours). One night when he was a year old, I was sick and couldn't nurse/rock him like normal. My DH and I tried a variety things to get him to fall asleep on his own, including letting him cry off and on for a few hours. He didn't fall asleep until 6 am the next day!!!!! And that was with me rocking him, still not on his own. He has also cried for up to 3 hours in the car. Once a month we drive to visit our family in another town, we leave when my DH gets off work and as it approaches my son's bedtime he just cries and yawns and cries and yawns. From infancy he gets so worked up when he's left to cry for any reason that he'll throw up. I guess I could have done CIO and tried to push through that like Ferber says, but I just couldn't do it.

    That said, I am thinking about trying Dr. Jay Gordon's method of night weaning when he turns two. We'll see what happens. I want to have another baby but feel like I can't with my son as needy as he is with sleep.  But I don't want to put our plans to expand our family on hold either. I totally feel for you, with a new baby.

    I am also terrified that our next kid will be the same way! I may consider using Ferber's methods with our next child. I'm not sure if I can go through all this again.

    Know you are not alone! Have you read "Sleepless in America" by Mary Sheedy? She has some pretty great ideas for helping older kids wind down and sleep, it's definitely worth the read and could possibly help you. She is an expert in "spirited children." After we (hopefully) night wean I plan to try some of her ideas.I hope you can hang in there! You sound like a strong and wonderful mama!

     

    I have not read it but I'm looking it up right now.  It sounds like it could be helpful.  Something has to work!  :) 

  • DS is 22 months and I have no regrets so far. I don't think CIO would have worked for him. He's just not that kind of kid. He escalates and gets more worked up. We nursed/rocked to sleep until we moved him to a full-size bed at 20 months. Now I lay down with him and nurse him for a few minutes at bedtime, but pop him off after a certain amount of time and tell him it's time to sleep. Sometimes he whines a little, but for the most part he settles right down and goes to sleep within 10 minutes. And the past couple of nights, he has unlatched on his own before time was up.

    I used to nurse him for naps too, but as of a couple weeks ago, started giving him a bottle of milk instead. I must be the only mother on earth who introduces a bottle at nearly 2 years old, but I wanted to get him off the boob at naptime, and he doesn't seem to mind the switch at all (my mom watches him 4 days a week when I work and has always given him a bottle for naps, so he's used to that routine). He finishes the milk before he falls asleep, usually tosses and turns for another 10-15 minutes, then falls asleep (I am laying down with him).

    He still wakes up once or twice a night and I used to nurse him at those times, but recently gave that up as well. I started giving him a cup of water to bring into his room at bedtime, and when he wakes up at night now, I offer him the water and snuggles and that's it. Sometimes he cries for a minute or two, but usually accepts it and goes back to sleep without asking to nurse.

    Baby #2 will be arriving in September, so I'm hoping to work on getting him to fall asleep on his own in his room for both naps and bedtime, because I'm not going to have the luxury of laying down with him the way I do now, which makes me a little sad.

    I wouldn't put your TTC plans on hold beause he is needy. You never know how things will change between now and the time your second one arrives, and who knows - baby #2 may STTN from day one and it won't even be an issue. (Of course, I say that now, but I may be singing a different tune when my second one his actually here.)

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  • Ds1(almost 4) was nursed to sleep until around age two. He coslept on and Off and at 18 mos was still nursing all night on and off so I night weaned him. I refused to nurse him during middle of the night and rubbed his back and he screamed cried ect and it was awful nut after 3 or 4 nights he slept thru the night and I didn't feel bad because he was still with me and not crying alone in another room. We got pregnant when he was 19 mos and I weaned him at age 2 so he quit falling asleep for nap so I had to drive him around to get him to fall asleep and then move him to be and we'd napfor three hours. After baby was born sleep was hard. I do bedtime 5 nights a week alone. I would be nursing a fussy baby and cuddling a two year old at same time. He's now almost 4 and is a great sleeper. He doesn't usually nap but goes to bed around 9 and sleeps until 9. He wakes up some nights and crawls in bed with me and falls back asleep. Ds2 is 18 mos and ha coslept from day one but had started nursing soooo much at night so I started putting him to bed in the room with his brother and he usually sleeps all night. I nurse him to sleep for a nap and he usually naps 2 hours or more. It was so hard but has gotten so much easier and my kids are not scared to sleep and don't usually fight going to bed so I feel like for us it worked.
  • my son is 19 months old and I question my decision to avoid sleep training all of the time.  He still nurses to sleep for nighttime and naps and wakes very frequently. 

    I always feel guilty if he is having a bad day, thinking he would be so much happier had I sleep trained, but he has been tantrum free and completely happy the past few days even though he has slept horribly and is teething like crazy, so I definitely don't think that lack of sleep has caused his bad tantrums.

    Every child is different and I also believe that my son would not have done well with sleep training, he is also very strong willed.  He has also always had a hard time with teething so I had an issue with doing CIO just to have more teeth come in a few weeks later and doing the whole process again.

    I sometimes think I glorify sleep training, thinking it would be just 3 horrible days of crying and then going down without a peep from then on, but it seems that many lo's continue to cry at night and when initially put to sleep, which I would never deal with.  Or the cries for mama wanting to be cuddled, I could never ignore those cries.

    I know many lo's who were sleep trained who fight their naps and act completely crazy by the end of the day.  It is easy to put the blame on yourself and question your decisions, but you know your lo best and I believe avoiding sleep training is the most sensitive and loving thing you can do for your child.

     

  • image Katieh6:
    Ds1(almost 4) was nursed to sleep until around age two. He coslept on and Off and at 18 mos was still nursing all night on and off so I night weaned him. I refused to nurse him during middle of the night and rubbed his back and he screamed cried ect and it was awful nut after 3 or 4 nights he slept thru the night and I didn't feel bad because he was still with me and not crying alone in another room. We got pregnant when he was 19 mos and I weaned him at age 2 so he quit falling asleep for nap so I had to drive him around to get him to fall asleep and then move him to be and we'd napfor three hours. After baby was born sleep was hard. I do bedtime 5 nights a week alone. I would be nursing a fussy baby and cuddling a two year old at same time. He's now almost 4 and is a great sleeper. He doesn't usually nap but goes to bed around 9 and sleeps until 9. He wakes up some nights and crawls in bed with me and falls back asleep. Ds2 is 18 mos and ha coslept from day one but had started nursing soooo much at night so I started putting him to bed in the room with his brother and he usually sleeps all night. I nurse him to sleep for a nap and he usually naps 2 hours or more. It was so hard but has gotten so much easier and my kids are not scared to sleep and don't usually fight going to bed so I feel like for us it worked.
    did your 4 yo learn to put himself to sleep on his own?  Without sleep training?  My h seems to think that he will never learn if we don't teach him, I just want it to come naturally. 
  • Nope. DD demonstrates the same exact sleep patterns DH and I do. All three of us have a really hard time settling down, but once we're asleep, we are absolutely dead to the world and no amount of fire engines, car alarms and other ambient noise can wake us up until we're good and ready to wake up many hours later. 

    I nursed DD to sleep for the first 18 months of her life and that made it a lot easier to put her down for the night, but I honestly don't think CIO would have worked for us. DH and I are both terrible at "self soothing" and regularly rely on things like drinking wine or hot tea or having a good work out to be ready to go to sleep. Without these crutches, we each toss and turn for a good while before settling down. I view nursing to sleep as DD's baby version of the pre-bedtime glass of wine/cup of tea and I don't think CIO would have been an adequate replacement.

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  • Yes, pretty much every time it takes us 2+ hours to get him to go the F to sleep.

    But I change my mind in the morning when I wake up to his hugs, or the next night when he squeals "Ny-night!!", giggles, grabs my hand and pulls me into his room to cuddle to sleep.  Or when I watch him peacefully snoozing in his daddy's arms.  :)

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  • nope. My LO is a crappy sleeper off and on. She slept great at first, but now it's day to day. Teething really messes up her sleeping. 

    If she gets overtired it's a pain to put her to sleep, and if she's not tired enough it's her fidgeting and me thinking  "Go the F to sleep" for about an hour. What works one day doesn't work the next day. We nurse and sometimes she zonks out in 2 minutes and sometimes it's an hour. Sometimes she falls asleep nursing, sometimes she doesn't.

    BUT I feel like she is finally "getting" sleep. Some days she recognizes she is tired and wants to go to bed. It still might take her a while to settle down, but I see it as progress.

    There are times she cries with me there - when I know she is tired and I "make" her stay in bed or rock her. 

    I also believe sleep begets sleep - on the days she gets in good naps she goes down better and sleeps better than the days she has a crappy nap.

    It's hard! We sometimes say she is the perfect baby except when it comes to sleeping. She rarely tantrums, behaves well, is a pleasure to be around. Unless you want her to go to bed. ;) It's her "thing." 

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  • Honestly, yes. I wish we had at least tried some real sleep training. She's almost 2 now and up every 3 hours still, like a newborn. She won't let MH put her to sleep if she knows I'm in the house, so I'm up there with her every night. I have to get up really early so by the time I get her to sleep, I have only about an hour to do laundry, prep the next night's dinner, get organized for the next day, etc, and somehow squeeze a little "me time" in before I go to bed. Then I'm up with her every 3 hours until I get up really early. And on weekends, she'll only nap if she's on my lap nursing. So I don't get any time on weekends.

    I'm worn out, tired all the time and feel like I need a break. It's hurting my relationship with MH.

    I don't know if CIO would've worked with her temperment. We tried a bunch of things from NCSS etc and they didn't really work. But I wish we'd tried harder.

    There's little bits of progress, like if I go out she'll go to sleep for MH (before he'd have to drive around with her), she goes back to sleep faster, and she eliminated 1 night-time wakeup. She stopped nursing to sleep in the middle of the night but she'll still demand to nurse -- then she'll want MH to rub her tummy until she sleeps. That helps me a bit b/c I can duck out and go back to bed but now both of us have to get up every 3 hours.

    Sorry for the rant! I just feel like she's a little tyrant sometimes and that she's wearing me out. Now that she's not a little baby it's hard for me to be as sympathetic as I once was. 

     

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  • I tried CIO once and decided I'd never do that again. I still nurse DD at bedtime but usually she isn't sound asleep when I put her in the crib. She fusses for about 5 minutes and that is it. We had a rough patch between 14 and 17 months where she would wake every 3 hours to nurse. We went to Europe to see family and she was up every 2 hours (that's when my DH suggested to let her cry one night and she just escalated like she always does). So once we were back and she was over the jetlag I sort of sleep trained (she was 17 months). When she would wake up I would go in her room and lie next to her crib and sing her bedtime song over and over and over. She would cry but it never lasted more than 5 minutes. After 5 or 6 days she was sleeping 7-4. If she woke up before 4 I would tell her "it's nana time " and she would settle back down. About a month ago she started waking up a lot again and she had an ear infection. The past few days she wakes up around 1 or 2 and then 5 or 6 and wants to nurse. Since she is cutting a molar I am letting her. Hopefully she will go back to sleeping 7-4, then nurse and sleep until 7 or 730. So I don't regret not CIO. Also, at daycare she goes to sleep by herself and on the rare occasion that a babysitter puts her down she has no trouble doing it. I enjoy nursing her prior to bed and I don't mind getting up at 4 to nurse especially if she sleeps til 7 or so after that. She will be my only one so I am enjoying it while I can. Pretty soon she won't need me so much anymore....
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  • I did end up doing CIO at night (modified) with my DD because I couldn't handle my life anymore. It was a rough time but it was totally worth it. We did it around 10 months and by 14 months she more or less regularly slept through the night. Now at 2.5, we moved her to a twin bed which presented a whole new slew of issues. She is much better though because she learned to self sooth in when we were sleep training her initially. GL to you!
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  • I regret not doing it with DD every time I am really tired. But I know, deep down, that it wouldn't work for her.

    We let DS cry for a little bit when he was around 11 months old. It was soooo easy. He cried for about 5 minutes, and then STTN since.

    So the moral of my story is...every kid is so different, and what works for one may not work for another. Trust your gut. 

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