I’ve got a theory. Now, I’m no professional sleep scientist or indeed an experienced nursery nurse, and my research is based purely on my own experience and that of friends, family and others I’ve spoken to but, what I’ve discovered could be a breakthrough in our approach to sleep (or lack of). Admittedly it’s a tad controversial and won’t sell any books but it may save your sanity when you’re having, as Tamdin calls it, a self doubt moment.
Now, people in the business of baby sleep making would have you believe that you need to get them to fall to sleep on their own. Not to give them any props i.e. dummies or rocking. Basically you need to ‘teach’ them to fall to sleep on their own and if you don’t you only have yourself to blame. Most of these people have their own very marketable methods for correcting your terrible parenting ‘mistakes’. One book I read recently scared the bejeezers out of me by telling me that if my baby had a sleep problem when she turned one she’d still have it when she turned three [shudder]. These sleep theories all seems to imply (and please correct cynical old Ginger if she’s wrong) that you must minimise contact between parent and baby at bedtime and during sleep time.
I’m not what you’d call an earth mother but I’m not comfortable with leaving Baby Ninja to cry either so I’m always open to new theories about sleep and how to get more of it with as few tears as possible. The more softly softly approaches such as Pantley’s, No Cry Sleep Solution, definitely have my support but they’re not quick solutions and it takes real dedication and consistency to achieve any improvements with these approaches. Neither of which I have unfortunately.
So, I’m back to muddling through although the one thing that keeps me sane is my theory, (yes, I hadn’t forgotten). Inspired by a number of people in general but two people in particular (twin sons belonging to a friend of a friend one of which is a beautiful little sleeper and the other always burning the candle at both ends). Anyway, my theory is this: It isn’t what we’re doing as parents or indeed what we’re not doing as parents that stops our little ones from sleeping. It’s just one of those things. Some kids sleep. Ours don’t. Sure I can leave her to cry herself to sleep but that hasn’t taught her to sleep on her own it has just taught her not to ask for me when she wakes. I’m going to leave it to time. He helped with the naps and I’m hoping he’ll come up trumps with nights too. In the mean time I’ll continue to moan about not getting any sleep and not do anything about it.