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Teacher, Photographer, Otaku, Amateur Seamstress, Wifey to B-chan, & Mommy to Monkey Z and Elven M.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Getting a Monkey To Sleep

Sleep Training
I never knew exactly how exhausting teaching someone to sleep could be. Monkey Z is learning how to sleep at night. Yes, we are letting him cry it out. I know, I know, I am so mean and a terrible mother for it. Really, this is not the only time he will be crying in his life, but man, is it exhausting. He cries at least 2 hours a night, and that is aside from the initial night of hell during which I maybe got 2 hours of sleep (and that's probably a generous estimate). I have to take a nap in the morning with him just to recover from all the crying at night. I can't even imagine having multiples... Shoutout to my bud Evelyn! I don't know how you do it (although by now the hardest part is mostly over, right?)
Back to sleep training... So I haven't been blogging much lately because I've had to take naps just to survive. Recently we've become really dependent on the carseat for Z's night sleep and naps. Finally, I decided that either we have to get him to sleep in the crib now, or later when he outgrows the carseat and we have no choice. I chose now.
Honestly, my apologies if this post is a little scatterbrained. Sleep deprivation is not fun; it honestly deprives you of functioning normally. Even though I'm a mother now and I know it comes with the territory, I refuse to give in to not getting enough sleep. Other things I can put aside, but not sleep.

What About You?
So, did you let your kid(s) cry it out? At what point did you say "Enough!"? If you didn't, how did you get your child to sleep through the night? Or did you? Please take a moment to share how you handled getting your child to sleep. With sleep dependent on so many factors, it's hard to figure out exactly what works. Please share with any other new parents what worked for you, and thank you for passing on your knowledge.
May many restful Z's await you.


  1. Reading this reminds me just how glad I am those days are over! haha Ok, first thing I have to say is get thee the Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child book. It is the bible for children and sleep. It is a little dry and you can skim over a lot of it, but it give you the general idea of how much sleep and when a child needs based on their age. In my experience, Isabella, our first, did not sleep through the night until 6 months. She did have problems with a dairy allergy and severe reflux though so I was never comfortable letting her cry it out because I always thought she could be crying out of discomfort. But as the months progressed and her nursing time diminished each time I would go in to check on her I knew 100% that it was not a hunger issue or anthing like that. Once her reflux was a little more under control during the day I finally said enough one night and I literally slept on the floor that night in her room. When she would cry I would rub her back and shush her but I didn't pick her up. She would fall back asleep but wake up again a couple hours later. However, after that night....she slept all night long. I really think she just got used to me going to her when she cried. Now with the twins, it was actually easier because from day 1 they got used to being put to sleep some what awake and were never rocked so they learned how to fall asleep on their own. To this day at nap time and bed time we put them in their cribs say nite-nite, give them a kiss and walk out and they are out within 5 mins without a fuss. They slept through the night at 5 months. Sophia would have probably slept through the night sooner, but Gabriella was still hungry at night so we would get both of them up to feed. I noticed Sophia was not as interested in nursing and once Gabriella seemed to not care about nursing as much I started going in to check on her when she would cry and just offer the pacifier. It took another month or so of a couple of trips a night to replace the pacifier but once she learned to find it on her own we were good. In either instance all I can say is babies will cry at night for months on end, especially breast fed ones and I have heard that boys are hungrier at night, but if you are noticing decreased nursing and what not and you are sure he isn't sick or has reflux issues (the car seat thing is making me wonder about that since he might like being upright more. Does he spit up a lot?)then just go with your gut as to what to do. It won't last forever although right now it seems like it. And as for easier....well, I always like to say it gets different not necessarily easier. I mean yes they will sleep all night, but then you will have to start dealing with nightmares and being sick at night and not wanting to sleep, etc, etc. Being a parent is so much fun isn't it?

    1. Thanks for your input. As for the book, got it (pediatrician recommended it). As for the carseat, I haven't noticed spit up so much as gas. Z seems to wake the most when he has gas, and he has it when I do. So I really have to watch what I eat.
      Lately, I've really been trying to get on top of naps. My other friends just don't understand and think that I should be carting him around to this or that event in the evening. They also have a child who sleeps through the night, too. As for feeding, he can go longer periods (3-4 hrs.) but I am feeding him at 11p as the last one of the night. Then he goes for a 6 hr stretch at least. For the most part I don't go in the room because he does want to nurse at night. It's the 2am waking and crying until 3:30 or 4 that kills me though.
      even right now, he's crying and it sounds like the beginnings of "mommy".
      I'm also wondering about how much I should be increasing his food intake during the day to help him be not so hungry at night. I suppose that is another topic for another day.

    2. Oh I have so many more questions and comments! I'll have to shoot you a message on Facebook when I have more time tonight. However, I do think he is hungry at 2am. From 11 to 2 is a 3 hours stretch. How old is he now? And yes, stick to a schedule and be strict about it!!!! Don't worry about what your friends think!!!DO NOT cart that kid around. Be respectful of his sleep needs like you are doing. We are always home for nap time from 12:30-3:30 and everyone is in bed by 8pm. We plan our activities around these times and if that means we don't go out then we don't go out....makes for a much more peacful household! :)

    3. That's what I say! It's very helpful to hear from someone who has read the same book and believes in its principles. I'll be waiting for that message. : )