Define Cry It Out (Spinoff from working mamas) - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: How do you define CIO?
Walking away from a crying child containment device allowing them to cry 175 75.43%
Option 1- plus soothing a fussy baby by patting their back 26 11.21%
Option 1, 2 and placing a sleepy baby down. 5 2.16%
Any sleep method that is not holding, cuddling or slinging an infant 26 11.21%
Voters: 232. You may not vote on this poll

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#61 of 78 Old 05-03-2006, 12:12 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cjuniverse
Overtired, overstressed, overworked, undernourished, underassisted people make crappy parents.

Women are human. Having children does not magically transform them into pillars of perfection. They cannot be everywhere at once or fix every problem or right every wrong. They can only do the best they can. Expecting them to be superhuman, endlessly nurturing, and acutely attuned to everyone else's needs but their own 24 hours a day is totally absurd, and very cruel.

Few have such high standards for fathers. But when talking about mothers, everyone's got a reason they don't measure up, aren't doing enough, are doing too much, are doing everything wrong, aren't doing enough wrong, whatever. Anyone else read Perfect Madness, Motherhood in the Age of Anxiety? If you haven't, perhaps you should. It aroused more than a little sympathy and shame in me for mothers and my past harsh judgement of some, including my own.

Small children cry because they cannot communicate their needs in any other way. Not because they're being traumatized (unless something truly untoward is taking place). They're just trying to tell us something. If we're paying attention (and capable of doing so adequately because our needs are being met as well), we can accurately dechipher their requests and fulfill them. When possible.

We all know there are times when it is simply not possible to either fully understand the source of the crying, or to respond to it promptly. There are errands to be done, other children to be cared for, other adults to be cared for, clothes to wash, phones to answer, term papers to write, bills to be paid, food to be eaten, showers to be taken, sleep to be slept...in other words, life to be lived.

Life is not always pleasant, convenient, or conducive to immediate gratification of the wants and needs of others or ourselves. Sometimes we are sick, sometimes we are sad, sometimes we are frustrated, sometimes we are irritable, sometimes we are absolutely completely thoroughly utterly worn out and need 20 stinkin' minutes to regroup and resume. This is human. Women are human. Children are human. We are all human.

I for one do not think it is unreasonable for a child to cry for a few moments. Nor do I think it damaging. It's simply life. Sometimes parents have to put their needs/wants on standby, sometimes children do, sometimes we must compromise.

I'm rambling because I'M overtired, but I hope I'm getting my point across. Please everyone stop with the judgements and harshness. It's much of what makes being a parent, particularly being a mother, so hard. The unrelenting and uncompassionate opinions/insults of others constantly torturing our consciences and making us feel like failures benefits no one, LEAST of all our children. We should all do our best to help and encourage one another, not shame and condemn. If a mom's choice is to either get up for the 19th time in 2 hours to futilely attempt to comfort a screaming infant when she herself hasn't slept, ate, or bathed in weeks or to try and get some desperately needed rest and attend to the baby when she is physically, mentally, and emotionally able to do so effectively, I vote the latter, every time. The baby will be distressed, but as it's needs have largely been met, the priority in the situation goes to the mother (or father, or both). We have needs too, and if they aren't being met, all involved will eventually suffer.

A little more understanding, a little less condemnation.
Again, another great post! Well said!

To me, CIO is an attempt to teach a baby to soothe him/herself to sleep by letting baby cry. It involves very little, if any, soothing or comforting on the parent's part.

Okay, I'm probably going to get flamed for this one, but unlike some other posters here, I DO see a difference between crying and fussing. I DO think it's okay to let a baby fuss for a bit and then fall asleep. I truly think some babies fuss simply because they're tired, not because they want to be picked up, nursed, etc. Since when did it become CIO to pat a fussing/crying baby on the back in an attempt to soothe him/her? That's totally ridiculous.

Just me 0.2

Sara Mama to DS (6) and DS (4)
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#62 of 78 Old 05-03-2006, 07:31 PM
 
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I picked option 1.

I used to be dead set against any crying...at all...ever. But, that eventually changed. Now I'm more in the Dr. Sears camp - a baby's wants are a baby's needs for the first year.

I guess, for me, I believe that we just have to do the best we can. Search out all the options and do our best and then take it from there. I think that no crying is the best but that we have to take our own needs into consideration at some point too.
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#63 of 78 Old 05-04-2006, 01:38 AM
 
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I think of CIO as not comforting a crying baby with the purpose of making them go to sleep in mind.

Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
14yo ds   11yo dd  9yo ds and 7yo ds and 2yo ds  
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#64 of 78 Old 05-04-2006, 01:41 AM
 
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To me, CIO is an attempt to teach a baby to soothe him/herself to sleep by letting baby cry. It involves very little, if any, soothing or comforting on the parent's part.
: very simply put

I think the only exception I would make is if the parent is in danger of losing control.
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#65 of 78 Old 05-06-2006, 06:10 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cjuniverse
Overtired, overstressed, overworked, undernourished, underassisted people make crappy parents.

Women are human. Having children does not magically transform them into pillars of perfection. They cannot be everywhere at once or fix every problem or right every wrong. They can only do the best they can. Expecting them to be superhuman, endlessly nurturing, and acutely attuned to everyone else's needs but their own 24 hours a day is totally absurd, and very cruel.

*Applause*

I wish someone had said this to me when Corbin was two weeks old and still losing weight, and waking up every hour and a half around the clock to nurse and still not getting enough, and I was starting to find myself thinking that if he died, at least I'd finally get some sleep, and I finally gave in and started supplementing with formula, and some of the "crunchy" moms I knew online said things like "if you had just tried harder ..."

Thank you, thank you, thank you.
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#66 of 78 Old 05-06-2006, 12:11 PM
 
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IMO, CIO is not responding to the needs of your child when they are *supposed* to be sleeping. IE...Ferberizing. I don't think that you can *teach* your child to sleep on command but I do think that they can get the message very nicely that when they are placed inside their crib (bassinet, toddler bed, room, etc) that all their needs will be ignored.
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#67 of 78 Old 05-06-2006, 12:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi Brit!!! I saw your screen name and said is that the same sugarmama on xanga- read your sig line and it was.

Punk, hippy, mama to 4 amazing kiddos, Boy#1 (18), TheGirl (13), Boy#2 (11- PBD) and Boy#3 (6)
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#68 of 78 Old 05-06-2006, 02:36 PM
 
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I would say CIO is anytime a child is crying and you don't do whatever you can to meet his/her needs or console her. That said, I also think there are certain situations in which a little bit of CIO is acceptable, like when toddler is doing something dangerous while little one is crying to be changed, or the just fed/nursed/changed child is crying in the car and you know he will go to sleep within seconds (or you will arrive and be able to console very soon). Sometimes you just have to pick the lesser of two evils.

Rachel, massage therapist and single mom :to Keanu 7/29/04 and Juniper 11/18/11!  Lovingfemalesling.GIFcd.gifnamaste.giflactivist.gifgd.giffambedsingle1.gif

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#69 of 78 Old 05-06-2006, 02:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by siobhang
I mean, if I don't pull the car over on the freeway to nurse my baby for 45 minutes but rather let him cry until I get home 10 minutes later (all the while singing and talking to him), is that going to psychologically damage him for the rest of his life? God, I hope not, since I have had to do that more than once.

I hate hearing my kids cry - it physically hurts me - so not responding is very hard. But I am trying to sort out *what* it is about CIO that hurts kids, you know? Are we judging CIO on intention? I intend to meet my kids needs but sometimes can't, so it is okay for them to cry a bit sometimes?

But the kids don't get intention - they don't know that I want to pick them up but can't - they just know that their needs are being met. So from the standpoint that CIO damages a kid's trust for the parents, ANY time a parent/caregiver doesn't meet the kid's needs, regardless of intention, s/he is damaging the kid.

Is it age or time limits? it is okay after age 12 months but not before? Okay for under 15 minutes, but not for more? is it okay if I talk to them but can't pick them up?

Obviously, avoiding the situation is the best for all concerned, but sometimes things cannot be avoided.

I cannot tell you the amount of guilt and pain I went through during DS1's infancy about this issue of what to do when I cannot meet his needs right then and there (especially as he was a moderately high needs child). I still wrestle with it, though I am a lot more relaxed because I see that my ds is very attached and secure little guy even if I finished my shower a few times while he cried as a baby.
I have a lot of the same thoughts, over here. Being a kid therapist, I read the developmental lit, and I've come to believe that it's what USUALLY happens that guides a child's assumptions about the world, barring highly acute, traumatic experiences. So I don't feel that my child will be harmed in any lasting way if she cries for a couple minutes b/c I had to put her down to pee. I tend to wait to take my shower until she's well rested and fed and in a good mood - then she'll sit happily in her bouncy seat and I not only get to take a shower but dry my hair, too. What bothers me is the car - the one place where I feel out of control, b/c I CAN'T soothe her. Sure I talk to her, sing, reach back and touch her head, etc. but this doesn't stop her from crying, so this is the closest I get to CIO and I hate it that there's no way for her to understand that I would be holding her if I could, or that it will be over soon.

There are also the times, although rare, when it seems like she's crying for a little stress relief, kind of the way anybody does when they're super tired and it's been an awful day. At these times I feel like she just needs to be held and soothed while she cries. This is after we've been through all the usual suspects and nothing's hitting the spot for her. I don't believe this is CIO, because I'm holding her, letting her know she's not alone. It's important to me that she knows it's okay to cry when she's sad or upset. I think most people here will probably go, "Well, YEAH." I think we all agree on this more than we think we do.

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#70 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 12:14 AM
 
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I have been thinking a lot about the OP's question - and I have a few thoughts. Perhaps it isn't when a child should cry or what a parent does or doesn't do. Perhaps it is really a question about approaches to sleep.

My basic issue with mainstream approaches to sleep is that it doesn't bear any relation to the research on how most infants sleep best - i.e. close proximity to a caregiver, multiple wakings, soothing methods, etc. There is a one size fits all approach to sleep.

If your child doesn't fit the pattern, you are a "bad mother" and your baby is a "bad baby". Therefore, you both need to be trained! And the basic way of training is force - baby WILL sleep and will not be "rewarded" with attention for being bad. Mom needs to be "strong" and harden her heart, etc .

The AP approach to sleep is based in both research and in gut instinct. It isn't another one size fits all approach (despite the fact that some folks think it is) - it instead says "most babies need to sleep near a parent and nurse through the night. Most babies don't sleep through the night and need to be comforted when they wake. Most babies need to be soothed to sleep for the first couple of years. However, HOW they are soothed, and other circumstances depends on the baby and the family. The AP way is to RESPOND to the child's needs as interpreted and defined by the people who know him/her best - the parents."

It always strikes me as odd how most people (esp. new parents) focus so much on the "rules" of sleep - i.e. my 4 month old MUST go to bed at 7pm, he MUST sleep for at least 14 hours a day, he MUST sleep 5 hours straight on his own - or there is a problem that must be fixed.

I just wish most people understood that a. most problems are not problems, they are just variations of normal, and b. if there is a problem with sleep, if they are creative and responsive, they can probably come up with a solution which works for their family.

Siobhan

You know the attributes for a great adult? Initiative, creativity, intellectual curiosity? They make for a helluva kid...
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#71 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 05:07 AM
 
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I'm with the OP - patting or soothing a child you're not holding isn't CIO.

It *could* be CIO - for example, my daughter screams if she is sleepy and not being held or fed - you couldn't pat her on the back and have it NOT be CIO, but for many children this is not the case. I've patted many babies and small kids to sleep with a very minimal amount of groaning or fussing (more sleepy sounds than fussing, really).
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#72 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 10:51 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ~*SugarMama*~
IMO, CIO is not responding to the needs of your child when they are *supposed* to be sleeping. IE...Ferberizing. I don't think that you can *teach* your child to sleep on command but I do think that they can get the message very nicely that when they are placed inside their crib (bassinet, toddler bed, room, etc) that all their needs will be ignored.
I don't get this, are you saying by putting them not in your bed is ignoring them?
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#73 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 11:00 AM
 
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No, she's saying that if every time you put them in a specific place, you promptly begin to disregard them, they quickly come to learn that this is the place where they are left to be disregarded.
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#74 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 11:46 AM
 
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Originally Posted by KayasMama04
I don't get this, are you saying by putting them not in your bed is ignoring them?
No, putting them in their own room, whether it be in their bassinet, crib, toddler bed, etc and letting them cry themselves to sleep is CIO.
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#75 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 11:46 AM
 
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Originally Posted by malibusunny
No, she's saying that if every time you put them in a specific place, you promptly begin to disregard them, they quickly come to learn that this is the place where they are left to be disregarded.
Yes! Thank you.
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#76 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 12:59 PM
 
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to me cry it out is allowing a child to cry instead of attend to their needs - everychild is different some's needs may just be hearing moms voice or a pat on the back others may need more- each individual child is unique! But the key is to help you child if you know that the child really needs to be picked up to calm them yet you just pat their back then i think it's cio
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#77 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 04:19 PM
 
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I voted for #1 as well. I think that is the one which is always CIO; 2-4 may or may not be, depending on the age of the child and the child him/herself. My DD went through a phase (when she was under a year) where she didn't want to be held to sleep. I could put her in the Amby and swing her with my hand on her chest and she might cry for a couple minutes, or I could hold her or put her in the sling or other carrier and she'd be much more miserable and cry for much longer. At some point I figured out that if I put her in the Amby, said goodnight, and left her awake, she'd go to sleep without a peep. That's just where she was at that point. Eventually, that changed again, and we started co-sleeping full time again because that became what she needed.

I feel like the key to AP is not to rigidly decide that a certain way of doing things is always going to work. If you are attached to your child, you can figure out what their wants/needs are, and they may not be what you expect but you can be responsive to them. To say that soothing a child by rubbing his or her back is always going to be CIO is unrealistic and unreasonable. It may be, but it may not be.

I also do believe there can be a difference between fussing and crying. My DD at 18 months will sometimes wake up and make a complaining noise, stop, make it again, then roll over and go back to sleep. If it doesn't escalate beyond that, I know she's fine and she doesn't need me. If it turns into a cry, then I know it and I go comfort her. There is a distinct difference between the first noise and the second. I don't even think she's awake most of the time when she's making the first noise.
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#78 of 78 Old 05-07-2006, 09:20 PM
 
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IMO the answer lays in the intent. If you are "training" your child to do something and that includes letting them child instead of doing something to sooth them, then it is CIO. IMO that includes straight CIO in a crib, the ten minute at a time torture or handing them to dad to walk around all night screaming so that you can nightwean.

On the other hand, being in the shower when they wake up or being in the car while they are upset is not CIO because IF you could sooth them, you would.

Also, something that I haven't read it in this thread is that there are physical consequences to CIO, not just emotional.

V.
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