Time and time again the subject that new Mums bring to me is that of night-times and baby’s sleep. Often it is a couple or more months down the line, when the novelty of the newborn has worn off and life is settling in to a more predictable pattern. That is when we have emptied the sleep bank of anything that we stored during pregnancy, and when we are desperately searching for answers/solutions to sleep-problems.
Elizabeth Pantley, author of the No Cry Sleep Solution says that women believe that they have one of two options – to cry it out, or to live with it. And for most those are bleak choices. We are biologically programmed to respond to our babies when they cry, in fact the majority of mothers will wake a few minutes before their babies do at night – it’s like we have an inbuilt alarm clock. It therefore goes against the grain to let our babies cry for any length of time – it causes us distress, let alone our babies. And, there are more and more studies coming out about the psychological damage being done to babies by controlled crying, with emotive words like abandonment being used. However, living with a nocturnal waker can be a real challenge – we need sleep – in fact sleep-deprivation is a form of torture. So, what can we do. Do we have any alternative choices? (more…)