How can I walk without lying down
Baby's difficulty falling asleep: This is how my child learned to sleep alone
Are you on the verge of a nervous breakdown like me? Why can't my child fall asleep alone? Will it ever learn that? Every evening we had a large portion of braces, whining, crying and screaming as a flat rate. In my opinion, the Sandman is for sure a drama queen. Why else does he always come late and make us endure the whole scenario? When it was finally quiet, I could hardly believe how easy it was for my child to fall asleep alone. In this post I tell you about my steps so that your children can also find their way to sleep relaxed.
Every child can learn to sleep - really every child?
Yes absolutely. I wrote down my own experience in this post, but if you have a bigger problem with this topic, you should definitely take a look at the online course of the baby sleep school (20% discount with the COUPON CODE: babyeckchen20) *. It is always better to work with someone who has experience and the necessary knowledge. With Irina Kaiser, you put your baby sleep problem in the hands of a loving mom who, as a sleeping coach, takes basic needs into account and gently ensures the right sleep from the start.
Step 1: the sleep ritual
Children need solid structures in order to feel safe. When everyone knows what to do and when, there is less stress. Your child quickly learns the rhythm they are used to and is more relaxed when they are brought to bed at the same time every day with a nice bedtime ritual. With us it means putting on pajamas, brushing your teeth and snuggling into bed. Then a book is read out and the feet are caressed for 5 minutes. From now on, my child knows that I will leave the room as I do every day to be able to go about my activities. How did we do that?
Step 2: Realize that it is not the child's fault
What is it all about, I asked myself? Basically, I was bothered by the unfavorable sleeping habits for which I was responsible myself. I loved falling asleep with my little one and never wanted to take the extra bed down. The cuddle factor was just much stronger and every mommy will know this incredible magnet of baby love. Unfortunately, at some point it was no longer possible without me. My child has got used to it and now asked for this sleep aid every evening. The fact is, however, that both child and mother have a more restful sleep ALONE to have. Please note: It is not the child's fault, but for everyone the better solution to be able to sleep alone in peace.
Which method is best for my child?
Of course, leaving the room after the sleep ritual was a real drama the first time. So that a child learns to fall asleep alone, you can use the Ferber method, in which you leave the room for 1-2 minutes before you come back and comfort your child. This process is repeated at increasing intervals until the child falls asleep.
BUT, this method is very controversial and leaving my child screaming alone couldn't get me over my ovaries. After all, my daughter was a tender 14 months old. Therefore, I would strongly advise against letting your child cry alone. So I modified that theory for myself and tried my own toned version. It worked amazingly well and I was amazed when it worked out the next day.
NOTE: I am not a teacher and I definitely do not want to sell myself as such. At this point I am just passing on my experience and the numerous comments below this post show that it has also worked very well for many other parents.
Step 3: This is how my child learned to sleep alone
So it's about creating a new safe place for your own child, where it feels comfortable and there are no changes. It is quite natural for babies to wake up several times a night to unconsciously check whether everything is still okay. If they fell asleep sucking on a bottle in your arms and now find themselves at night without a calming wiggle movement and sucking in their mouth, something is wrong. Your whole environment has changed. Kind of clear. So it is a matter of laying the child in his cot while he is awake so that he can see his surroundings. Of course, your little ones will not like this immediately, BECAUSE:
We humans are creatures of habit, it's been like that from birth. The hardest part is breaking them and that means finally getting rid of pesky sleep aids. If your child has been weighed to sleep beforehand or, as with us, caressed to sleep in the closest physical contact, it will of course not be satisfied with simply lying in a cot. I have therefore decided to gradually drop one of the habits. And to enforce this first with their short nap. It is important not to take her out of bed despite crying. Clearly, but unfortunately difficult to implement for every mother's heart.
I put my little one in bed at noon, left the room for a moment and came back with a chair to spend the time with her until she fell asleep. It was important to me that she knew that I was there for her. I paid more, sometimes less attention to her when she was asleep. I tried to read a story to her with a lot of jarring. I tried to go on calmly and not to comfort her too intensely. It was important for me to show her that the situation is not that bad or extremely extreme. I acted like she was just singing a song to me with her crying and moaning. A very dramatic song, maybe something in the direction of Heavy Metal, but by no means a reason to lose your nerve. A few songs and pats later, she realized that she would hardly be carried out of this bed. And with the resignation and the usual exhaustion at lunchtime, the deep sleep finally followed. It's not about making your child suffer. Give him the love he needs (through caressing and comforting) just don't let him fall asleep on your arm again but in bed.
Sleep kid sleep
What was tried out at lunchtime, I did in the evening. If she woke up at night, I left her in bed and stroked something. Of course, as a preventive measure, I placed several pacifiers in bed so that she can find at least one of them quickly and not even wake up. This strategy has helped so far, because the little one has found herself in her sleeping environment and possibly just wanted to know whether I was still alive. On the second day she let herself go to bed without crying. Nevertheless, I sat down with her to show that I was present and there for her. With her feeling of security, I was able to gradually reduce my sleeping habits. It is now even possible to leave the room entirely and I am happy that I did it with a gentle method in just a few days and our own measure.
More helpful tips for falling asleep
The suggestions from netmoms "With these 10 tips your baby can learn to sleep" also helped me with my implementation, and our blog post "Why does my child sleep so briefly" is one of our top posts with helpful knowledge.
I can also recommend our beloved lullaby from babymoov, which is available in two versions. With soft light and monotonous falling asleep noises, it is a great relief every day and the best sleep aid.
Babymoov night light sleep aid *
### Addendum due to the many comments ###
Since some desperate mothers as well as outraged mothers and educators have come up with contradicting opinions on this post, I would like to comment on this retrospectively. First of all, I would like to say that in principle any opinion is welcome, although some negative comments have of course also hit me personally. Therefore I would like to briefly report on my current status and give a further insight into our sleeping situation.
I want to make it clear that I have only written down my own experience. In no case do I want to be an advisor, the subject of upbringing is just too complex for that. I would also like to emphasize that I have no pedagogical training. As a mother, I act from my gut and weigh the best solution for myself and my child. I don't see myself as a bad mother and spend the whole day with my child full of love. With the tips linked above, we have managed to turn the cot into a positive place of rest and our own sleep ritual. We now stick to regular times, getting ready for bed together in the bathroom beforehand. My daughter is now 2.5 years old. I recently weaned her from the pacifier too. The bed no longer has a child gate. It is open and only has a bed box extension so that it cannot fall out while sleeping. But that also means that she can leave her bed at any time and join us in her parents' bed. Every evening they snuggle under the covers with their favorite doll. There is a portion of milk in the bottle to help you fall asleep. I sit quietly on the bed and wait until she has finished her milk. Sometimes I sing her favorite song, but most of the time I just gently stroke her back. Depending on your situation, it is not necessary to stay in bed until you fall asleep. Of course there are also days when people complain and complain. Here I take a little more time for her, but she is usually so exhausted that she falls asleep without worries in a few minutes. She knows that I'm always close by and comes straight into the room when she calls me. For us, the hurdle to "falling asleep alone" means a stress-free evening. This does not mean that the method described in this blog post is also the right one for other children. Every mom has to find the right way at her own discretion. For us, however, it was a great relief to remain consistent.
* = Affiliate link (Means: if you buy the article via our link, we get a small commission, but there are no additional costs for you. We only recommend articles that we are convinced of ourselves.)
What is your experience of falling asleep alone with children and babies?
Sa | ra, die, triple mom and all-rounder. Your twins make you a talent for improvisation. With the help of their experience, there are the best tips for everyday life with a child. Her weapon: pure serenity and the confidence that there is a simple solution for every mom challenge.
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