How NOT to Sleep Train Your Baby

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“Is your baby sleeping through the night?” The question that makes me want to punch right in the face anyone who asks. My blood literally (no, not figuratively – literally) starts to boil. I bite my lips as I resist the urge to straight up yell “Do I look like I’m getting ANY sleep?!” I mean let’s face it, the last time I actually did my hair was … well, see I can’t even remember, it’s been that long. A blow dryer? I think mine broke a while back. Who knows? Curling iron? Do people use those anymore? I have no clue. I have a comb, bobby pins and hair ties. My hair “done” involves being washed and combed and to make myself feel better, I spray some hair spray on it. I’m not sure why? Wet hair doesn’t need to be shellacked into place. Anyone with a brain can tell when they look at me … with my wet hair sprayed with Tresseme Level 4 and my lovely wardrobe that consists solely of lounge pants and maternity pants (or my personal favorite – maternity lounge pants) that I haven’t slept in over two years.

It started with pregnancy, then my son didn’t sleep longer than a four hour stretch until he was nearly 14 months old, but you see I was already pregnant again at that time, more being pregnant, and now I have a newborn. Apparently the mix of my husband’s genes and my genes create children who hate sleep. No, correction. They hate sleep at night. They are like bats.

Baby bats.

Oh I know. You have the solution right? Swaddle! Sound machines! Black out shades! Cry it out! Co-sleep! Baby wise! Dream feeds! Baby cereal! Blah blah blah. I don’t want to hear it person-in-the-check-out-lane-at-Sprouts. I tried everything in the book with my son. I cried. I pleaded. I prayed a gazillion “Dear God, please let him sleep” prayers trying to convince God that I really needed more sleep.

You see, I really really really love sleep. I love naps. I love staying up late and sleeping in late. Ask anyone who knows me. Childhood friends. I loved sleep then too. Highschool friends. Oh yes, they knew not to call me right after school. Napping. Or to wake me during Algebra. One day, I kindly informed my English teacher that she didn’t go over a particular concept. She kindly informed me that I had been napping during that section. College friends. “Coming to class Missy?” “Uh no, sleeping fools!” (anytime anyone knocked on my door before 10 AM). My husband. Oh he has stories. During my sleepless nights, I began to wonder if God was trying to break me of my love affair with sleep. I’m not sure, I’m too tired to ponder it.

One day a lady asked me the question-that-shall-not-be-named. My baby girl was five weeks old. Seriously?! Cue blood boil. I politely smiled and simply responded, “She sleeps like a baby”. And moms-who-aren’t-sleeping-and-won’t-for-a-very-long-time that’s the best advice I can offer. Some babies sleep through the night. Some babies are bats. But one day sleep deprived momma, your baby will indeed sleep through the night. And guess what? It probably won’t have anything to do with all the tricks and sleep programs you tried. Your baby all on his or her own will morph from bat to average human who sleeps. My son magically started sleeping through the night when he was around 14 months old by no help from me and my daughter? Well, I know she will get there in her own time. Every baby is different. Maybe one day I will even have to yell for my children to get out of bed. Oh to dream.

Tell me Albuquerque moms, are your children naturally good sleepers or did you experience bat children like mine? What was the best sleep advice you ever got? Although I like to be sarcastic when it comes to baby sleep, I actually am open to advice. Any extra sleep minutes I can eek out are totally worth it!

6 COMMENTS

  1. I am far enough away from that stage that I don’t really remember. I DO remember that my oldest was born in the middle of the Babywise craze. Friends told me their babes were sleeping through the night at 3 weeks (roll eyes). With my second, my husbands claims that one early morning, in the throes of sleep deprivation, I told my daughter that I hated her ???

    All that to say, hang in there, mama! ❤️❤️

  2. This is wonderful! I always wondered what people were thinking when they asked me if my INFANT baby was sleeping through the night!

  3. What a fun read! My daughter, who wasn’t breastfed for very long was a good sleeper early on. My son however didn’t sleep through the night until he was weaned at a year. Tempts me to stop breastfeeding earlier with number 3 to get more sleep!

  4. I used Happiest Baby on the Block and Ev was a great sleeper. No lie, that little dude slept through the night at about 8 weeks, and until 930 or 10 AM at times starting when he was 11 weeks. He was just a content little guy.
    I’m sure if I had another it world be the extreme opposite!

  5. I have to say now that I have 3, I think it’s at least 50% disposition. I’ve used mostly the same approach, and all three have been so different. #1 really was sleeping 10pm to 7am by 8 weeks or so, but #2 was still waking up multiple times at 4 months, and #3 is somewhere in between.

  6. My daughter was waking up 6 times a night when she was 7 months old. I was about to start a new job and didn’t feel comfortable being a sleep-deprived zombie when I needed to prove myself in my new job, so I did the Ferber progressive waiting (cry-it-out) method. On the fourth night of the program she was sleeping through the night! Every once in a while she has a bad night, but I’m so spoiled at this point and used to not having to get up that most of the time I ignore her until her dad feels compelled to do something (I know, shameful mom confession).

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