Friday, November 23, 2007

Sleep Training - Who needs it?!

Aaron fell into the habit of feeding to sleep when he was around 6 months old. At that time, it really felt like a gift because prior to that, we'd be rocking and walking him for anywhere up to 3 hrs before he fell asleep. The feeding to sleep gave us all some much needed rest.

He still feeds to sleep now. I don't have a problem with it because I need to give him a feed before bed anyway. He just calmly falls asleep after he's had enough. No fuss. Just peaceful slumber in the arms of his Mama.

So why would I even want to try to get him to sleep on his own? I don't know. Because its the thing to do? Because people keep telling me that its time? I basically have no reasons of my own.

Yet, I've tried it for two days now. Yesterday was encouraging because after 30 seconds of protest, Aaron was happy to play around the bed and then 30 mins later, fell asleep without much fuss. Today, I had 30 mins of screaming, kicking, tears, begging, rolling and having to look at his extremely hurt and rejected face. In the end, I caved and fed him. He was so distraught he sobbed for some time before drifting of to sleep.

I don't think I can continue to do this. Its too heartbreaking. Many people don't realize just how secure and comforting breastfeeding is from a baby's perspective. Yes, they do get the pacifying effect from it but they also feel rejected and confused if they are suddenly refused a feed. I'll have to try some other way. Go back to the Pantley pull off perhaps. There is no short cut to this. I'm not going to have him go sleep so miserably every night when he's such a perfectly happy child.


dawn224 said...

We talked about this at our mom's group one day - that sleep training has a lot to do with the personality of the parent too - and I just don't have the personality ... and neither does my son.

Moxie at thinks kids are tension releasers or tension builders where crying before bed is concerned. I like to read her stuff when I'm just about done with the mom gig.

I figure I won't potty train by one day deciding I'm not changing his poopy diapers diapers "because he needs to learn to to do it on his own", So why do it with sleep? :)

Best of luck. :)

John said...

Two things:

1) You are Aaron's mom and know him better than anybody else. Why let somebody else tell you what you need to do with him. Free advice is usually worth nothing.

2) Kids understand way more than we give them credit for. Why not try talking to him (while he's feeding)about how babies grow older and soon begin to go to sleep without nursing first. Make it out to be a simple part of becoming a big boy.

Kellan said...

You do what works for you and your child - that's what I say!! Everyone is always trying to tell other mothers the way to do things and what they think is right. You will figure out what is right for you and when it feels like it needs to change, you will figure out how to change it. Take care. Kellan

Nap Warden said...

You know what...You gotta do what works for you and your little one. Stick with what works, fwiw. Good luck!

Jean-Luc Picard said...

You know what's best for your child.

NomadicExpat said...

Hmm.. no idea, coz I dont have a kid! I like John's suggestion that the next time you nurse him to sleep, talk to him about being what it is like to be a big boy now and having to fall asleep on his own... and keep doing that. I'm sure he understands and gets it, and one day, voila, he doesnt need your mammary glands anymore! ;-)

Amanda said...

Hi everybody, Thanks for all the comments and encouragement to listen to the people who really matter (basically, Aaron and myself).

He did end up paying me back last night by waking up every hour. I think it really traumatized him.