Monday, January 15, 2007

Who Needs Sleep, Day 2

Here's the thing - Elliot is thirteen months old, and he still does not sleep through the night. It's appalling, really, we should have taken care of this months and months ago. He has so many bad sleeping habits, that I fear this will take forever. I've been reading a sleep book for children and now here's our list of crimes - For ages, he's been falling asleep by giving him milk. When this doesn't work, N or I bounce him until he passes out. He's been taking his naptimes on the floor in the living room until just recently. His cotbed is still in our room. In the middle of the night, when Elliot wakes up crying, he gets taken into our bed. We cosleep. Slowly, all of this has to change. But N and I can't bear to see him crying. Under the advice of my health visitor (who I have an uneasy relationship with) we started the day before yesterday by putting Elliot into his cot tired but awake, told him it was sleeptime and left the room. Five minutes later, one of us would check on him. Then we waited a bit longer, and so on. 50 minutes later the poor child had falled asleep at the opposite end of his cotbed facing his blanket at the other end. He slept for four hours in a row before he woke up and we put him in our bed. Last night, it only took 20 minutes before he fell asleep, but he woke up 10 minutes later and cried for a few minutes before he put him back to sleep. I think it's been pretty good progress. We'll still continue taking him into our bed until he gradually is able to sleep through the night. It's been a rough few nights though, I feel terrible when Elliot cries like that. I know in my heart that I shouldn't feel guilty or think that Elliot is feeling abandoned, but I can't help it - he's breaking my heart.


  1. I've so been there...

    With both children we did that crying out thing - I don't know if that is the book you're reading - but it worked exactly like the book said it would and they both were going to sleep on their own and working it out in the middle of the night after three days. THREE DAYS. (Okay, so the three days of crying it out tore the heart from my chest... but OVER IN THREE DAYS!!)

  2. He's so cute I think I'd have trouble letting him cry too. We had to let our first " cry it out" And boy oh boy were those L-O-N-G nights! But he sure sleeps through the night now. Good Luck.

  3. We did not do any of the "crying out" things. We co-slept and rocked him to sleep. My son is now four and we never have bedtime fights, he sleeps through the night, and wakes up happy and cheerful.

    Although I would say it's time to wean him from the milk before sleep, just keep putting more and more water in it until it's all water. Then you can start the process of weaning him from that when he is ready.

  4. Don't feel bad. Even though I sort of brag a bit because both of my kids were sleeping through the night at 8 weeks old in their own crib my son gave up the whole idea when he started to walk around 11 months. That is when I became pregnant with my daughter and he decided he no longer wished to sleep at night.
    Oh he would cry and cry. We never coslept but it isn't always easy to break them of that "sleeping in mommy and daddy's bed habit" if I dare call it that.

    I think it's great that you guys coslept I was too scared. If it makes you feel any better my brother and wife still cosleep and their daughter turned 2 on Dec 24.

    It just becomes a little frustrating when you;re ready to give it up and they're not.

    Have no fear this will pass. It will just take some time. I couldn't bare to hear my boy crying when he refused to sleep at that late age and with my pregnant self because it went on for about 6 months, I held him and sang to him every night. It could be that whole other baby coming syndrome but who knows when it comes to these kids.

    Hang in there and sorry for the novel

  5. I'm certain the crying is unbearable but if it helps, he won't remember it ever happening.

  6. I bet he uses those big puppy eyes to his advantage, doesn't he? The thing you've got to remember, is when he finally does sleep through the night, he'll be physically and mentally rested (and so will you and your husband). He may cry now, but keep in mind your goal, and have faith in Elliot that he can achieve it.


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