We disagree on the CIO method - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 11:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Alright. I am looking for some advice on how to approach this calmly and rationaly with dh. We are having issues with "night time parenting"
The background:
Our ds is 8 months old and a terrible sleeper. He starts out in his crib (next to our bed) and then comes to our bed in the middle of the night. So I guess we are quasi-cosleeping. Last night we got one good two hour stretch. Other than that is was every 30-45 min. He doesn't always need to be nursed, sometimes rocking, shushing, patting him works but he always needs to be picked up (patting him in the crib does nothing).
We have tried The No Cry Sleep Solution and are working on those suggestions.
Dh now puts ds to bed so there is no nursing to sleep. He does the bedtime routine (bath, lotion, diaper, jammies, swaddle, rock) with him. I nurse him before the routine starts. We started this about 3 weeks ago. Before that I did the night time routine but always broke down and nursed him to sleep.
Dh has had it. He is done. He is ready to let ds cry it out. That breaks my heart. I am so against that. However, I do get where Dh is coming from.
I have offered to do the night time myself and have Dh sleep in the guest room at least for a few nights a week so he can get some rest. He doesn't want to because he says that to him, that is admitting "failure".
He feels like we have tried this "my" way and he is ready to try it "his" way as my way failed miserably. Dh is a great and involved dad, but he doesn't see the ap thing working. I am running out of arguments as he says results speak for themselves. We are sleep deprived and it is really affecting our marriage. He is getting angry and bitter.
ANY ADVICE?????
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#2 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 12:37 PM
 
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It sounds like your son may be in need of a lot of parenting at night. My 2nd is like this. He just has needs that are greater than that of my other 2 children. Eight months is still a very young baby. Would your DH be willing to wait until he's closer to 2 to consider changing your nighttime parenting into something less AP?

I hear the frustration and worry in your post and I worry for you. It sounds like your husband really needs some more sleep. Could you take over the nighttime thing? You do the routine, and nurse him to sleep if need be? He may need some more touch time during the day to feel more secure at night. Or, may just be a light/difficult to sleep baby.

I'm sorry you find yourself here. Do a search on google and I'm positive you can find lots of reasons not to CIO. Imagine the damage this would do...

AP is not something that can be necessarily *seen* in 8 months. It is a lifestyle that results in a certain manner of being. My two children who were both APed are drastically different from one another. Night and day... One is laid back, the other high need; one is a great sleeper, one is awful; etc. etc. These are their own individual personality traits with which I have little persuasion. The commonalities between them is where I best see the "pay-off" if you will of APing. Both of them are affectionate, caring, considerate and secure. Both of them are concerned for those who are hurting or sad. I have communication with my almost 8 year old that astounds me, and will be so important for the upcoming adolescence years.

I guess my point is that AP will not make a child who is naturally highstrung and intense docile and obedient. AP will not make a child who sleeps poorly a great sleeper. It will not necessarily make your life EASIER right now. But I have faith that it does make my children happier and more secure with them knowing that I can help them through most difficult moments, including nighttime woes.

HTH!

Amanda
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#3 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 12:49 PM
 
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WOW . . .I really, really could've written most your post. DH and I had this same issue for a long, long time. My DD's sleep habits were eerily similar at that age. The difference was that I did all the nighttime parenting (and most daytime) for 14 months. I was exhausted, and finally exploded. I told DH that it was his turn, and that there was NO way I'd let him do CIO. I'd spent 14 long months losing sleep, and he'd done nothing . . .so if his "solution" was to CIO, he would be following the laziest parenting style ever.

I understand how this issue can really affect one's marriage. It did ours, as well . . .You're tired, frustrated, and feeling helpless. (MY DH had no excuse for being tired-- he got a full night's sleep every night back then.) The good news is, this too shall pass. The bad news is, it may not pass soon. What worked for us was:
(1) Nightweaning at 20 months
(2) Accepting co-sleeping for the 2nd half of the night as a solution

Now DD actually does sleep through the night sometimes (she's 25 months), but even if she doesn't we get sleep because she isn't constantly asking to nurse (I can't sleep while she nurses).

So many babies have the same nightwaking issues. I have come to believe that it's normal but hard to deal with. CIO may certainly not solve the problem either . . .what works for a child one month changes the next. You'll find support here: The Family Bed and Nighttime Parenting

I just wanted to add that my DD, even at age 2, constantly wants to be with me, carried, etc. It makes sense, then, to see her wanting to sleep with us as a natural part of her personality/needs. However, she's not at all shy-- she's very outgoing with other children and adults. She just loves to be with us, and isn't that every parent's dream?

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#4 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 01:23 PM
 
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If your husband putting the baby down at night works great (baby doesn't cry, goes right to sleep) then have you tried him doing that in the middle of the night when the baby wakes? If the baby isn't genuinely hungry, maybe this would work, especially if you are determined to get him out of your bed.

Personally, I love the benefits of co-sleeping so I would be more inclined to keep working with that approach myself. It is possible that your son is sleeping so badly because he keeps expecting to be left alone and waking up alone, so this puts him in a low level of stress, which interferes with his getting into a deep sleep cycle? Have you tried having him in bed with you all night? My first (an easy-going baby and child by the way) slept terribly too, and I finally figured out that it was because I kept trying to get away from him (not just at night, but during the day as well, when he'd nap.) He picked up on that and it made him hyper alert. I believe this is a built-in defense system for babies -- they are wired to resist being left alone, because that is so dangerous in the wild.

Another thing you might try is getting your husband out of your bed -- his stress at not getting enough sleep and not liking the situation is surely getting to the baby. Also, his movements and sleep sounds may be waking the baby. Yours may be too, but like one does with food allergies, you eliminate one variable at a time to see if you can pinpoint the problem. There is NO way my husband could sleep with us -- I'm a light sleeper, so when my baby wakes up to nurse, I have a hard time getting back to sleep because my the noises my husband makes. And when I become fully awake, my baby is more likely to also. When my husband is not in the room with us, I am more likely to doze through feedings. That really helps.

Or -- we did this for a while and it REALLY helped -- try white noise. Have you considered also that the baby might be waking up from being too hot or cold? This also happened to me -- I finally realized that my baby was getting warm a lot faster than me (this is still the case, I must have lots of covers on, my children kick them off) and you know how hard it is to sleep when you're overheated or too cold!

HTH. Good luck!1
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#5 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 02:55 PM
 
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I would talk to your dh about the great progress made so far anf thank him for the wonderful job he is doing and be compassionante towards his need for sleep and his desire that his child be well rested. See if he would be willing to hang on for a set amount of time. maybe 3 or 6 months. What are some ways he canget some sleep during that time? Is there a spare bad?> what else can you add to nighttime parenting routiens that would help him sleep through the night? Also investigate whjat could be getting in your way. dd is cutting her i teeth right now and it is about to send us over the edge with all her night waking. At the end of those 3 or 6 months what would you be willing to give? would you be willing to night wean? Dr. Jay gordanhas a plan involves crying in arms that has brought nighttime bliss to a lot of families. Another option is to agree to let the baby try to go to sleep on their own but not letting them cry to the point og hysterics. Many babies will go to sleep after a few minutes of fussing. they just need to settle a little . Make a plan and stick to it whatever it is. And if the night time thing is causing problems in your marraige, a few nights of a crying baby isn't worth wrecking your marraige over. It is iportant to acknowledge your dh ideas concerning parenting. it seems like he has given yours a lot of considerationa been willing to go along even if he doesn't agree. Don't forget to thank him for that while you are making a plan. That sort of acknowledgement goes a long way.

Good luck. Hopefully this will work itself out soon.

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#6 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 07:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok ladies, thanks so much for your replies! I am going to re-read them a few times. Dh has agreed to go out to coffee with just me (we're getting a sitter for the boys) so we can discuss this and come up with a game plan. I like the idea of trying it for a few more months, whatever he will agree to, before we introduce a drastic change. I am also going to look up that doctor with the crying in arms method.
I think sometimes Dh says things he doesn't mean simply because he's frustrated and lashing out. I called him at work today to aks him to go to coffee this weekend to discuss it and I told him that I was willing to consider many options, including moving the crib out of our room. I was really surprised (and relieved) when he responded with a sad, "I'm not sure I'm ready to do that yet". He wants the baby in our room still. So I am confident that if we can come up with a plan, then he won't insist on the cry-it-out method. I really dont' think he wants that, he may just feel like he's out of options.
I agree that I should really affirm how much he has been helping, and how much progress we've made (just establishing the bed time routine and stiking to it was tough for us). Hopefully if I start out that way we can have a nice calm logical discussion and look at some of the other options out there. I am also going to go check out that family bed forum that was recommended.
Thanks, I am feeling much more hopeful right now.
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#7 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 09:04 PM
 
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with many AP issues my DH didn't know about, I always found that handing him a book to read with facts and figures always swayed him more than my crying or complaining or even trying to talk to him.

Maybe try Nighttime Parenting by Dr Sears..??? I seem to recall it has really great tips AND good statistics about babies who are AP'd night and day.
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#8 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 10:39 PM
 
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but my teen was CIO and worse because I didn't know another way and my family did it and hey we all were fine right ? NOT to the point I was even sat on so I could not go to my crying baby.
Years later he told me when he was about 9 "when I was hurt or scared when I was little I never said anything or cried because I knew you wouldn't be there"
that was after learning about ap and trying to repair the damage.
He told me today that men don't show their feelings or cry -despite the fact he knows better and has been taught better than that but that original damage goes so deep...
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#9 of 11 Old 03-11-2004, 10:45 PM
 
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Oh CerridwenLorelei, even though you may have made different choices for him than you would now, it sounds like you have raised a boy who communicates with you.

My heart goes out to you.

Amanda
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#10 of 11 Old 03-13-2004, 01:53 PM
 
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you onlyboys
we have undone a lot of damage but still have more to work on
but we are doing it slowly but surely
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#11 of 11 Old 03-13-2004, 11:51 PM
 
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dh-2b and I have talked about this in advance. not sure how he'll handle it when the time comes.

But

He asked why we could not CIO.....I flooded him with positive AP and anti-CIO stuff. Not ME saying any of it; not just my thoughts and feelings -- facts and as much science data as there is.

One fact he likes ------- found in Good Nights : The Happy Parents' Guide to the Family Bed (and a Peaceful Night's Sleep!) ------- is that co-slept babies that do not CIO have a lower rate of "psychological issues" later in life. Since I stuffer clinical depression -- already a worry for us -- that really bought him. He is all for anything to do for emotional security.

I have searched CIO and AP and sent him a lot of articals out of Harvad Medical Journal and stuff from PHDs and so on. science.....data....facts....opions from people not touchy-feely like me.

Overload with science and data was my game plan.

Course -- again -- this is before baby. sooooooooooooooooooo can't promise it helps.

btw -- he is doing a great job doing the bedtime routine and so on. don't squalish him. (I know you won't). The better he feels about himself and his role as a parent and equal partner in the raseing; the more he will listen and the less defensive he'll be.

Also -- I agree seperateing YOU from the middle of the night waking -- maybe let DH do it unless baby is really hungray. break the assocation between waking and nurseing; unless really hungrey. -------------------- read the 10 day weaning suggestion int he book I cited above.

Good luck.

AImee

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