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Old 09-18-2012, 06:32 AM   #1
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S/O- My 2 year old still doesn't STTN. That doesn't mean I did something Wrong!

I must admit. Despite the insistence that things are staying "nice" in the babywise thread, I'm a bit frustrated with the conversation. I still feel like there is an undercurrent of "if your child isn't sleeping through the night by age XYZ, it is because you failed to do something". The evidence offered is "well, my child was on this program and..." or "my friends were on this program and..."

The many statements of "I see so many parents posting about not having good sleepers" etc, is evidence that somehow the mamas WITH good sleepers attribute it all to something positive they have done.

The reality is, all children are different. Mamas can have good sleepers and "bad" sleepers all in the same family. Sleep "issues" can vary--from the normal waking of a newborn for biological needs to health issues that stem from recurrent ear infections or acid reflux, to nightmares or dreams, to normal developmental processes. In fact, all humans wake during the night. Most of us just return easily to sleep. Not all of us do, however. For example, I wake at least 2-3 times a night, regardless of whether or not DS wakes me up. I just wake up. Sometimes I go right back to sleep, sometimes I don't.

Sometimes DS sleeps through the night. Sometimes he doesn't. I think that his sleep habits are truly independent of my actions at this point. I base this finding on having tried various "programs" and followed various advice over the course of the last 2 years. We are on (and have been since birth) a "sleep schedule"....didn't help a single iota. We have tried laying him down "sleepy but awake". We followed sleep cues. We nursed to sleep, we didn't nurse to sleep, we co-slept, we didn't co-sleep, we tried CIO for 2 terrible, horrible, never-do-it-again days. We tried Pantley's methods. WE TRIED EVERYTHING. It's awesome if something works for mamas who are desperate for a solution...but it's also JUST FINE if you don't want to do it, or if you try something and it doesn't work! It doesn't mean that your methods are "wrong" or that your sleep problems could have been prevented.

You know what finally worked for me?? Acceptance! I accepted that my child is a unique individual who would develop in his own time and who would, believe it or not, sleep through the night when his body was ready. I accepted that I was not doing anything wrong by rocking my baby to sleep, or nursing to sleep. That I can trust myself to do the best for my child without having to read a book about it. In short--I took the advice my mom gave me from the very beginning. I tossed the books and started believing in myself.

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Old 09-18-2012, 06:37 AM   #2
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Re: S/O- My 2 year old still doesn't STTN. That doesn't mean I did something Wrong!

I love this, thanks!

Way to go for recognizing your baby's needs and just rolling with it She'll figure it out eventually. Or maybe she'll be that college student that has to wake up at 2am to tinkle and get a drink of water. No problem there.
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Old 09-18-2012, 06:39 AM   #3
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Re: S/O- My 2 year old still doesn't STTN. That doesn't mean I did something Wrong!

Exactly! I'm 28 years old and still wake up several times a night

All 3 of mine *wake up* at night, but then usually put themselves back to sleep, there are times though that they are thirsty and come out to get themselves a quick drink, or need to use the bathroom, or even just want to give me a quick hug before going back to bed and that is FINE.
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Old 09-18-2012, 06:48 AM   #4
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Re: S/O- My 2 year old still doesn't STTN. That doesn't mean I did something Wrong!

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You know what finally worked for me?? Acceptance! I accepted that my child is a unique individual who would develop in his own time and who would, believe it or not, sleep through the night when his body was ready. I accepted that I was not doing anything wrong by rocking my baby to sleep, or nursing to sleep. That I can trust myself to do the best for my child without having to read a book about it. In short--I took the advice my mom gave me from the very beginning. I tossed the books and started believing in myself.
I agree with a lot of what you said, but this can't be said enough. I had a friend suffering with PPD, and the expectations of those around her, well meaning family, doctors and other lead her to unrealistic expectations of her DD's abilities to sleep. She tried several sleep training methods, which seemed to make her DD sleep worse and worse. In the mean time, trying to find the magic cure to her sleep issues, drove her to be more stressed, more depressed and had her questioning everything. She was miserable and so was her DD. Finally she decided to throw away all the books, and ignore everyone but her DD, she decided to give in and expected her DD to never sleep, and all the other horrible threats of clinginess and never ending sleep battles she would suffer, but she decided she couldn't fiight any more.


When she gave in and listened to her DD, she saw a surprising change in her, she began to sleep more, my friend became less stressed and everyone began to feel better and came out of the downward spiral they were in. She never thought that acceptance, would be the answer, she thought fighting, scheduling and rules would be, but they just made everything worse. Her DD is 5 now and such a great kid, she sleeps great and is such a outgoing little doll. Her advice helped me a lot with how I chose to parent my DS. She told me, every kid is different, don't fight it, follow their lead, except the first few months might be tough, but it will end, use the cuddle times to find piece, sleep when you can, and eventually it will all come together.

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Old 09-18-2012, 06:48 AM   #5
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I havent read the thread since Im not a baby wise mama but I have 2 completely different types of sleepers(one of the things I read the most on here is 'all kids are different!' so it would make me giggle if ppl are saying when kids are different its the parents fault). Anyhow, dd1 was a great sleeper from the get go. She slept 6hrs by 6wks, 8hrs by 8wks and 12hrs by...you guessed it, 12wks. Then she went nuts, nothing I did soothed her and she'd cry for 2hrs for each nap/bed time so I did cio. After 3days she was golden and has remained that way ever since. Dd2(who I didnt do cio with) on the other hand was still waking 2x a night at 10mos. After she night weaned-a short time later-she still! woke up at least once but would talk/sing herself back to sleep. Once she moved out of the crib she'd come to our bed every.single.night until she was 4.5. At 5 she still wakes most nights but most of the time she turns her light on and reads until she falls back to sleep. I say she takes after me while dd1 takes after dh
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Old 09-18-2012, 06:51 AM   #6
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Well said! My first still doesn't sleep through the night every night at 4.5 and my 16.5 month old has slept through the night from the beginning...go figure! I wake up several times and need comforting so why not my little one?

Thanks for the post!
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:09 AM   #7
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Re: S/O- My 2 year old still doesn't STTN. That doesn't mean I did something Wrong!

I totally agree!

We have tried so many things with our son. He is 26 months old. He sleeps better now but still not great. Hi brain just never seems to fully stop, plus he's very sensitive to things like teething, growth spurts, etc. He also has nightmares. You know what has worked best? Acceptance, just like you said. It's much easier to accept that he is who he is and to stop comparing him to other kids. Yes, it can still be frustrating, but realizing that it's just how he's wired really does help.

Other people making us feel like lousy parents doesn't help a thing.
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Old 09-18-2012, 09:02 AM   #8
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Re: S/O- My 2 year old still doesn't STTN. That doesn't mean I did something Wrong!

most people consider STTN 6 hours of sleep which IMO is NOT STTN at all. DD will go to bed around midnight and wake up about 8-9 am but she still wakes up in between that time typically. she will crawl in bed with dh and me in the middle of the night and she's 2.5
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Old 09-18-2012, 09:23 AM   #9
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Re: S/O- My 2 year old still doesn't STTN. That doesn't mean I did something Wrong!

I think there is a happy medium somewhere and knowing what's typical (developmental-wise) and what is practical (capable) is important.

For instance, waking 2-3 times a night in that 8-12 month stretch is typical. If you can manage to sleep train that down to 1-2, great. If not, oh well.

BUT

If your baby is waking every 45-90 minutes at that age, someone's doing something "wrong." I've BTDT and it is awful for both baby and mother. (and Daddy isn't too happy either at my house) I've read some posts where mothers just suck it up and try to sleep nurse, but that just didn't work for me at all. Both myself and my baby were not getting good sleep.

I think it's awesome that some babies and parents manage to come to good sleeping agreements. I think it's awesome that some parents are in a position, with babies who respond well, to sleep train. I really do.

Never worked for me, but I learned early on that the boob was like a switch for my newbies and I used that to put them to sleep when I wanted them to sleep-like at night! Pantley was very informative, but it didn't solve the night waking. What finally did for my youngest (my older two were a little better sleepers) was nightweaning (dr Gordon) at 12 months. Huge, huge difference. Apparently my kids need no to really mean no.
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Old 09-18-2012, 10:26 AM   #10
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Re: S/O- My 2 year old still doesn't STTN. That doesn't mean I did something Wrong!

Exactly mama

In all my studies/education on baby/child development I have learned that the normal age for STTN is 18 months - 3 or 5 years of age. Some babies naturally do STTN much earlier on, but the vast majority don't and that's normal.

Both of my boys started right after their second birthdays. They literally went from getting up a few times at night for a drink to the next day 12 hours straight. Every so often ds2 will get up for some water, but for the most part he doesn't and neither take day naps (sometimes rarely).

I don't even STTN. I'll sleep about 6 hours and then I'll have to get up to use the bathroom and get a drink, and sometimes I actually eat yogurt. Then I'll go back to bed but sleep very lightly the rest of the night. Which is also actually normal.

For me what matters most is that my kids are happy, healthy and thriving.
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