Sleep Training: The Update-ining

TL;DR: Everything is awful. We’re awful. Sleep training is awful. But I think I know what the problem is.

So up until about Saturday, things seemed to be progressing well. Then Lady Jr just cried and cried and cried and started sounding really distressed and it was just me in the house, listening to her cry and listening to the cats cry and so I caved and boobed her to sleep. And since then it’s like we’re back to square one. I know I shouldn’t have caved. I also have newfound respect for every parent who goes through this.

Saturday night she was up every two hours, then every hour after 1am.

Dr Lady came home Sunday and we toughed it out a bit until she accidentally soothed Lady Jr to sleep. Again, Lady Jr was up every two hours, then every hour after midnight.

Monday night, I caved after 30min of crying (with soothing intervals). That night also sucked.

Tuesday night, we talked about committing or not to doing this. Dr Lady reiterated that this isn’t just for us, it’s for Lady Jr, too. If our sleep is shitty, then so is hers. So we re-committed to sleep training and sticking to the schedule. Lady Jr fell asleep after one wave, but woke again around 8pm and cried and cried and cried. I said I’d feed her if she made it to 9pm, because then it would’ve been 2.5 hours since she last ate and also I needed to sleep. She made it to 9pm. I fed her and she instantly fell asleep. The rest of the night was the same: slept until 11, woke again right before 1, then 2, 3, 4, 5…

I feel terrible because we haven’t been able to stick it out. The total crying time hasn’t ever been more than 30min, she just rolls and fusses and spits out her nuk inbetween, so she’s not getting sleep. Apparently the night she self-soothed to sleep without the pacifier was a one-off. I feel terrible because all this crying is getting us nowhere. I feel terrible because I know caving isn’t helping her, it’s only making me feel better for a few minutes.

I used to be the most stubborn, strong-willed person, too. What happened??

Anyway, this is all to say that my updates stopped because, basically, we stopped. And I feel so, so guilty for it. But I also know we need to do this.

So we’re restarting. Re-committing. And this time the pacifier is being taken out of the equation, because I think she (and we) were relying on it for sleep instead of actually learning how to fall asleep. Which she can do! And we’re going to stick to the schedule unless it seems like she’s going to cry herself to hysterics, in which case then we’ll soothe a little sooner. And I’m just going to have to stay up later and handle it.

I also need to stop googling “Ferber support” when it gets rough because you know what pops up? Not support. :/

My stubborn streak is still here somewhere. I just need to find it again. And if we can’t do this right, then we need to not do it at all and just deal with the shitty sleep for a few more months.

So I need to do it right.

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “Sleep Training: The Update-ining

  1. AndiePants

    Do you think maybe either taking a break from the sleep training process or looking at a different method might be helpful? Not every method works for every baby/parent set. I know some people have success with a method that is a nightmare for others. Maybe stepping back and looking into other methods? Basically, my theory is that if it works for you (and by works, I mean meets whatever your top priority goal is) than that’s all that’s important. I personally don’t believe that you are keeping your baby from her fullest sleeping potential by nursing her to sleep. I think you are responding like a parent. So the guilt is not useful. Sleep – now THAT is useful. In any case, I’m so sorry and I really hope something turns the corner, and soon. ❤

    • I did and I think that’s what we’ll do if we can’t see it through after tonight. I just feel like I’ve been inhibiting the process and I want to see how it goes without the pacifier. That said, I am 900% certain that if it gets any more uncomfortable – for her or me – then we’re done with this method, at least for now.

      We’ve been doing adhering to the No Cry method since we first started thinking about sleep (idk, 10 weeks?), which I credit with why she usually falls asleep just fine the first time. It just falls apart after that, though, and I’m at my wit’s end on what to do about the every 45-120min wake ups. If she woke up every 2-3 hours and wanted to nurse back to sleep, I’d be okay with that. But for at least 1 or 2 wakings each night, even nursing doesn’t help. :/

      Honestly, I’m like this || close to paying for a sleep consultant because it’s been 2.5 months and I have no idea.

  2. I couldn’t do it either. Give yourself a huge dose of love: what you are trying to do is hard. As you know, Lady Jr is hardwired to keep her mama-mammals close to her and she’s doing a beautiful developmentally perfect job of that. And you need sleep. Unfortunately it’s one of many parenting dilemmas in which all available choices suck. Sending love to add to the huge dose you are pouring on yourself~.

    • I’m honestly not sure I can do it. Tonight will be the make or break for me, I think. Because it’s not fair to her or us if I keep half-assing it.

  3. I already know I don’t have the backbone to do it, haha. We don’t even discuss sleep training, because I wouldn’t last 5 minutes. And I think of myself as one of the most hard-headed, stubborn, confident-to-a-fault people I know!

    Whatever you decide to do, know that you’re a fantastic mother and you’re doing the best you can with what you know. You are NOT failing, and you deserve NO guilt. This is a journey and a process.

    Good luck!!

  4. You are doing such a great job. I know it doesn’t feel like it when you’re in the thick of things, but you are. We were doing 5 min checks (well, my wife was) while Charlotte screamed last night, and I was a paralyzed ball of nerves and tears the entire time. I cannot handle the crying. Fortunately, I have seen firsthand how sticking to a routine makes an immense difference in sleep habits, and I forced myself to go with it because I know that (for us) the end result will outweigh the immediate soul crushing. Which is not to say that we have ever really figured out this whole sleep thing (um–obviously), but for over a year we’ve had bedtime down pat and I credit the routine we created with sleep training for that. I do not regret the time we spent sleep training. It wasn’t the end-all solution for us, but it sure made a difference in some things, and I would let all of those tears (hers and mine) flow again for those same results. In fact, I may have to. We’ll see what tonight brings!

    • ❤ ❤ ❤
      The crying is so much tougher than I ever could have imagined. I'm glad your wife could do the checks. I'm leaning towards making Dr Lady do more of them, but it's hard for her, too.
      Thanks for the support and the reminder that the routine is paramount.

  5. I recently read this article and it made me feel a lot better about our decision NOT to sleep train.

    http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/7119782

    • Oh yeah, I’ve read that one before. It’s part of the reason why honestly, I *don’t* want baby to sleep 10 hours. Also why I’m keen on continuing to room-share as long as possible (also because I’m lazy and don’t want to give up my office).
      And I know if we aren’t successful with this, it won’t end up harming her in the long run. But at the same time, her inability to sleep longer than an hour for most of the night is making it difficult for me to be the mother she deserves. Sleep deprivation and anxiety disorder do not play well together. 😦

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