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Old 05-13-2010, 10:33 AM   #21
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

At your DDs age, I would feel OK about letting her cry. It's a touchy subject and one that there are always strong feelings about so I won't get into the arguments for or against.

I just want to say that it is possible to be a loving, nurturing parent while also letting your kids cry a little bit.


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Old 05-13-2010, 11:03 AM   #22
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

Thanks! And yep, she sleeps like a dream after that. Usually she is in bed from 8:00pm until 7:00am. And until this whole thing started, she slept through the night easily. Currently she wakes up a few times a night screaming for a few seconds and then settles back down and goes back to sleep. She definitely seems capable of settling herself down rather well. I think maybe she is annoyed and frustrated when I come in and interfere with her trying to settle herself down. Perhaps that is why she cries in short little bursts when she is trying to get to sleep, but gets gets completely inconsolable when I go in to help her?
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Old 05-13-2010, 11:09 AM   #23
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

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Originally Posted by Janine View Post
Just to clarify, during the 10 minutes she does scream, for about 2 seconds, then calm down, then a couple minutes later scream for a few more seconds, then calm down, etc. So it is more than whimpering, but it isn't constant screaming for 10 minutes either.
Honestly I've gone through this stage with both my kids right around 18-20 months too. It's seemed like they just need to get out some of that energy by howling for a few minutes. We're co-sleepers and sometimes in the middle of night they just wouldn't settle down after a night waking. Sometimes all it takes is a few minutes of crying before they get with the program and conk out. I don't have a big problem with it because we're talking about much older toddlers at this point not a 4 or 8 month old with no sense of object permanence.

You're right it's not pretty but hopefully it will be a short-lived phase and she'll get over it. Mine did. *phew*
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Old 05-13-2010, 11:22 AM   #24
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

When you said that she cried, calmed herself down, cried some more, etc I instantly thought that it sounded like your DD was doing it to get your attention to come in and whisk her away to your bed. But, after reading your update about her getting more frustrated when you go in, I have these thoughts for you:

1) When she is fussing, leave her be. Let her settle on her own. I don't consider a few outbursts in a matter of 10mins to be "CIO", I think it's a natural thing that most toddlers go through - whether it be a seperation anxiety thing, or just annoyance and defiance (as in, "I'm really tired but I don't want someone else to tell me what to do!" sort of thing)

2) Make sure your bedtime routine is absolutely, totally and 100% consistent. I know with my DD if any one part of her routine changes she is a lot harder to put down. We brush teeth, change into PJs, read three books, sing a song, go to bed. Each little thing brings her closer to bedtime, and since she "knows" what is coming she is able to gradually wind herself down a lot better than if we omitted part of this routine.

3) Possibly try putting your DD down a few minutes earlier. If she is getting frustrated when you lay her down it could be that she is overtired and even though it opposes all logic it seems like the more tired my DD gets the harder it is for her to fall asleep. Maybe bumping up her bedtime by half an hour would help? She could be going through a growth spurt, in which case she might need a bit more sleep than usual.

But don't stress too much mama, I think ALL toddlers go through a stage like this at some point!
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Old 05-13-2010, 11:26 AM   #25
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

I'm unsure why some people are against CIO. As long as the child is old enough and capable of going to sleep on their own I see no issues.

Our DD is 17 months, we are sleep training her right now. Naps are no problem, she goes into her crib, plays a bit then falls asleep, no crying at all. Bed time is different. DH has been rocking her with a bottle. We have a new LO coming in October and wanted to get her settled to go to sleep on her own. We have been doing 'controlled crying' which is the same as CIO (IMO). DD gets FRANTIC if I go in to console her, so I dont. Last night (third night of sleep training) she cried for less than 5 minutes and was asleep in 10. She slept for 11 hours (always does).

Sometimes you just have to do what works for your baby. If CIO works than do it. Falling alseep on your own is a learned skill. I know it can be frustrating and tiring, but sometimes it just has to be done. I know that CIO was the only solution for us.

Good luck!
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Old 05-13-2010, 12:25 PM   #26
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

My DD is a nightmare sleeper too! She's 19 months and has been co-sleeping since she was a baby but in January DH decided that he wasn't getting enough sleep and wanted to try her in her own crib. First I put her in a pack'n'play at the end of our bed, then I was able to get her to nap in her crib in her own room with no problem.

Nightime was a different story though, she would scream bloody murder before I could even lift her over the crib. So I started giving her her sippy cup of milk and laying down with me in our bed until she fell asleep and then transferring her to her crib.

The last couple weeks have been really trying because she just won't settle down, it's been taking me until 10 or 11 pm some nights before she will fall asleep. I tried the crib again and left her door open with the hall light on and layed at the end of my bed so she could still see me and she would still scream hysterically. If I closed her door she would scream hysterically.

I need some time at night to unwind and get some things done and she just won't let me, my husband isn't home at night so it's not like I can get him to take her to bed. She is so frustrating...I'm about to lose my mind.

I have been really fighting CIO because it breaks my heart to listen to her cry but at this point it may be my only solution before the second baby comes in September. It's not like she screams the whole time, she will sit down start to read a book and then remember that she's mad at me and start screaming at me again...and really - is it still CIO if she can SEE me?
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Old 05-13-2010, 01:13 PM   #27
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

No real advice either because we co-sleep too and do the side-car so there's more room. But couldn't pass by without giving you

I will say that my now 3.5 year old went through that around that time and it turned out that his body was doing some normal adjusting/growing and he just wanted to go to bed a bit later. He went from going to bed at 7pm to 8:30ish. Once I realized that it helped a lot. I would lay there with him forever until finally my husband said I really don't think he's tired.

So low and behold the next night we stayed up and by 8:30 he was droopy eyed and drifted right off, same thing the next night, and the next and so on!
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Old 05-13-2010, 01:13 PM   #28
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

Rest assured, she will not be talking to her therapist about this. CIO is not a bad word in our house, either. Just last night, my ODS (2.5) wanted me to lay with him till he went to sleep. Usually he's pushing me out the door at bedtime, wanting me to leave him alone and let him sleep, but last night he wanted to cuddle. But my YDS (6 months) was hungry. One of them was not going to get what they wanted. DS has been much like that since birth. He didn't rock or nurse to sleep very well, but if I put him in his crib and let him fuss for a while (not scream, but fuss), he was fine. At 2.5, he's usually a champion sleeper now. He's excited to go to bed, and points me out the door. Usually.
You are doing what is best for her. She may not like it, but it is what is best. Remember that when she's five and wants ice cream for dinner, when she's ten and wants a cell phone for her birthday, when she's fifteen and wants to leave the house without clothes on, and when she's twenty and wanting you to pay her bills. She will often be mad at you for a decision you make, but she will get over it.
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Old 05-13-2010, 11:07 PM   #29
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

Just my opinion but as long as the child is old enough, and yours definately seams old enough! My mom and I were talking about this very subject today. For an infant it seams heartless to me since you cannot know what is wrong with them because they cannot commuicate...however an older baby/toddler is different they are not great at communication but they can definately give you more ques! So at this age I know it is heart wrenching but seams appropriate! So do what you feel is best for your family!
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Old 05-14-2010, 07:19 AM   #30
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Re: Starting to Feel Like CIO is My Only Option

My personal opinion (and others might think it's wrong) but at 20mo it's not CIO anymore! It's survival for you. My ODS is 20mo also and he does the samething. I let him cry for about 10-15min then he's out. He used to cry for a good 25-30min a couple month ago, but it was crying... stopping to listen (to see if i was coming)... then crying with a little more emphasis... then stopping... etc. I would just go in there and lay him back down without talking to him or picking him up and say "good night, I love you". I think at this age they "know how to work the system" for getting out of bed. 6mo no, 8mo no, 12mo maybe, 20 mo for sure!
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