Attachment Parenting

I need to feel better about NOT CIO

This is the first time I have posted on this board and I think I am mostly looking for validation.  DD has always been a pretty awful sleeper and we have tried so many things to improve it.  I have read the No Cry Sleep Solution but not much in it helped with her sleeping.  I read Ferber and we attempted it twice with DD but it was completely awful and stopped.  She was going to sleep great on her own for quite a while but is back to being rocked to sleep and whimpering even during this.  Once she is asleep she will sleep a pretty good stretch.  She used to wake soooo many times a night so that part has improved over time. 

I guess what I am trying to say is that I am pretty much sick to my stomach that her sleeping is going to continue to get worse and we may have to try CIO yet again.  I (and DH) just don't want to do it.  It's just so hard when you have so many people saying to do it or hearing success stories with it.  Reinforce to me why CIO sucks (for lack of a better word) and maybe some success stories on having a baby that will eventually sleep well without CIO.

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Re: I need to feel better about NOT CIO

  • I've read multiple places that 9 months is the peak of wakefulness - and that was definitely true for us.  We've done no sleep training and co-slept until just a few months ago (when we moved him to a full size futon in his room).  I still sleep with him some when he wakes at night.

    Until we started teething molars/eye teeth - he had started sleeping 7-9 hour stretches - totally a first!  Even now, he's going 5 hour stretches which is a HUGE improvement over where we were at 9 months.  I do still help kiddo to sleep (we usually wear him to sleep) although he has started to put himself back to sleep some when he wakes (that's been true for the last 4-6 months or so).

    Now that kiddo is older, I'm also finding it easier to keep a routine with him because he responds to it (understands it).  I feel like once teething is over (for now!) he'll sleep longer stretches again and we'll start working on getting him to sleep on his own (it's just not a priority right now).

  • DD1 just stopped night waking on a regular basis a few months ago. We didn't use CIO, she just liked nursing at night and I guess grew out of it. We bedshare and she always fell right back to sleep after nursing, so it wasn't a problem for me.

    Did you read the regular NCSS or the one for toddlers and pre-schoolers? I haven't read them, but a good friend of mine had the one for toddlers and pre-schoolers. Her two year old wasn't a very good sleeper and she said that nothing in the book helped her DD sleep, but it made her feel like she wasn't a failure as a parent or ruining her kid's life because she was still night waking. So maybe that version would be helpful for you?

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  • It's such a relief knowing we're not alone in this.  I feel like so many people are CIO advocates and being a first time parent I just don't know what the 'right' thing to do is.  CIO did not feel right...even if it would have worked had we not given in, DH and I just did not feel good about it and I literally cried all day every day during it b/c I felt so awful.  LO's are emotional and not logical little beings and they don't understand why mama's not responding.  I am hoping we can just ride it out and that someday (hopefully sooner than later :)  ) DD might just STTN.
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  • Well, we did CIO with our kids and it worked, but I just want to say good sleeping/STTN, etc., is a long-time process.  Once you've got it down, they teethe, or get sick, or start with night-terrors.  The list of things that mess of their sleep pattern is LONG.  And, quite honestly, doesn't end for a long time!  My 3yo just went through a phase of waking up 4-5 times a night.

    Do what you need.  Do what you feel comfortable with.  Do what will work for her.  We did CIO because it was the only thing that would work for our kids.  Anything at all involving me IN the room with them resulted in no sleep or 2 hours to get to sleep, with literally no improvement.  Me leaving the room and coming back just made things much worse.  It really was our only option.  But, if it wasn't working at a certain age, instead of making him scream for hours on end with no response, I just told myself he wasn't quite ready and needed me for bedtime still.



  • Just wanted to clarify...  I wasn't saying that your LO just isn't ready for CIO now and will be in the future.  I was trying to say that WHATEVER your method of getting her to sleep on her own is, when she's old enough, and you're ready for it, you'll figure it out.  If she's having too hard a time with it now, and you aren't comfortable just letting her figure it out (Ferber, or NCSS, or whatever) then it's too early.  Do what you both feel good about until you reach that point that you are ready to move on.
  • My kids are three and often don't STTN. And I never have let them CIO. They are a thousand times better than they use to be. It is a process.

    Do what feels right for you.

  • She's still so little, try not to stress.  She will sleep through the night when she's ready.  My girls all eventually sttn without any kind of sleep training.  My oldest was about 10 months old, middle DD was closer to a year, and my youngest was a bit older (more like 18 months).  All 3 of my girls are now wonderful about bedtime.  And even though I'm sure I was a bit sleep deprived, I now only have very sweet memories of late night snuggle sessions.  :) 

    They grow up too fast. 

  • I think you just need to do what feels right for you and be confident in your decision. You and your DH both agree, which is a huge positive. Stop talking to other people about how she sleeps. Each baby is different. Not every baby will respond well to CIO. Not every kid will be a great sleeper.

    Annalise sttn about 50% of the time. She's 4yo now. Those times I consider that she sttn, she comes into our bed sometime after 6am. She's the type of kid who needs to be touching someone else when she falls asleep. She's always been like this. As an infant she pretty much only slept while she was held or when she was in bed next to me. (She did have a brief period from 4-18 months when she would go to sleep by herself in her crib after nursing.) CIO just didn't make sense to me when all she needed was to be close to me for a few minutes. Plus since we've always been partial co-sleepers, it hasn't been much extra work for me.

    Annalise Marie 05.29.06
    Charlotte Ella 07.16.10
    Emmeline Grace 03.27.13
  • I agree with everyone who says do what you feel. I use to nurse DD to sleep, and she rarely lets me do that anymore.

    We are currently trying to figure out what to do for bedtime now- as she seems to just want to play when we're in the room. Tonight, we drove for 45 minutes to get her to sleep- so old school! Hello, are you 5 weeks old again????

    Just wanted to let you know that you're not alone. I am pretty AP, and have considered CIO lately because it has gotten so hard. She is just not interested in sleep right now, and you can't rock a nearly 20 lb baby to sleep when they're not interested...

    So I'm reading all these responses to get some help, too! I really don't want to cio, but NCSS hasn't addressed the baby who doesn't even WANT to sleep yet...


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  • We also have a crappy sleeper. His mostly results from GI related issues. I can say if we had resorted to CIO, we would've never discovered a lot of his food allergies, etc. Not resorting to CIO forced us to keep digging for answers when gentle sleep training wasn't working.

    Ditto pps who said 9 months is bad for sleep. There's an 8-9 month sleep regression that is the worst for many babies. It was really awful for us. I know this isn't what you want to hear, but you can't sleep train away a sleep regression. I will say that Ari's sleep needs also changed around that time - he dropped to one nap & we also did a later bedtime for a few weeks till he got back to normal. 

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  • {{hugs}}  I totally feel your pain.  I spent many a day beating myself up over DS's sleep challenges and wondering if I was actually harming him by not doing CIO, but I've come to realize that life is too short and some kids are just not good sleepers.  The truest thing I've read about sleep is that, while it is not a linear process, it does keep trending better over time.

    9 months was a rough period for us as well.  Then things settled into a twice a night waking pattern which was livable.  Then DS cut his top eye teeth and I just about lost my last shreds of sanity.  But it passed and he is now at once a night waking generally even though he is actively teething again.  I'm hopeful that he will be ready to STTN once these teeth cut through.  He just seems to have needed some extra maturity to be ready to sleep well and looking back I know I will never regret that I handled his wakings as patiently and lovingly as possible.  I'm not knocking those who chose to CIO because everyone's circumstances are different but it isn't for us nor do I think it really would work.

    Having said all that, I do firmly believe that it is important to set a good sleep foundation for your LO.  Things like a consistent, calming bedtime routine, not going to them at every single whimper, giving them an opportunity to practice falling asleep by themselves (though knowing every child is ready for this at a different age) are very important and can be accomplished without hard-core sleep training.

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  • Sorry it has taken me so long to respond, my internet was down for some reason.

     I just wanted to thank all of you for the support.  It's comforting to know that there are other people in the same boat.  I am hoping that we can ride out this awful sleep phase and eventually get to a place where we will all get some rest.  Thanks again, I appreciate all the responses.

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