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Do you want more sleep?   Yes! I need more sleep.

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  1. rasha says

    i do not know if this way will work for my daughter who is 2 month old but howlong will i let her cry and how i know when to stop using it and it fails for her

  2. Emily DeJeu says

    @ Angela — thanks for this insightful feedback! I’m interested in those names you mentioned — can you give us a bit more info about those authors? (At least, I’m assuming they’re authors, since you mention “reading” them.)

    Thanks, too, for your encouraging words — many of our readers who are first-time moms need to hear the “it gets better” mantra as often as possible. 🙂

  3. Angela says


    Certainly some babies sleep easier/more/longer than others, but it’s a bit over simplifying to say the ones who are harder must CIO. Mine were both very sensitive and the colic era was shocking, to say the least, but i never let them cry as infants because I believe any risk (to attachment, high cortisol (sp?) delicate forming stress response system, etc.) is not worth it. The brain is literally forming (after birth) and there are real concerns with CIO during the first 6 months at least. So, it’s really not just a matter of whether it comes easy. I think moms want to do what’s best for their babies no matter how difficult – we will put ourselves through anything for our babies, i know i thought i was going to die at times . . .

    Also, it sounds like what most of the moms on this board are talking about is a little controlled crying, which is not the same neurologically as CIO (total extinction) Thankfully, we can tweak the schedule, feedings, and sleep environment to get through the newborn era in tact and slowly the sleep does improve. But to cold-turkey it and force sleeping through the night prematurely is unnatural and could be risky in the first 6 months. Read Sue Gerhardt, Jaak Pranskeep, Margot Sutherland, Jay Gordan, for more details. And of course this site is a great resource for tips to get *enough* sleep to get by ; )

    Good luck to all struggling mommies. it does get better!

  4. Emily DeJeu says

    @ Vanessa — we’re fully supportive of parents who choose not to use any CIO methods, of course; we’ve worked with lots of them. But we’re also careful to avoid judging or condemning those who do. Done well, CIO is a fast and effective way to help your baby break sleep associations. And we’re quick to point to the “done well” part — you can use CIO methods and still be attentive to your baby, offering love and comfort and consolation when necessary.

    @ Meagan — yes to the “as long as everyone is getting the sleep they need” part! Some families come by that easily; for others, more serious measures (like CIO) are necessary.

  5. Meagan says

    @Vanessa And I’m sure you would be surprised at how happy, bright, and loving MY cried-it-out boy is. I’m sorry people made you feel that you must CIO. As long as everyone is getting the sleep they need, it’s a valid sleep plan. But I’d have a bit more sympathy for your indignation if you weren’t so judgmental about the *cruel unnatural* things I’ve done to help my baby get the sleep he needs.

  6. Vanessa says

    I do understand that all mothers have a breaking point, but I find CIO to be cruel and unnatural. That’s fine if it’s your personal philosophy – its your kid and you can do what you want. But the truth of the matter is that many parents feel pressured to force their kids to cry. We have let our son sleep with us from day one and have for the most part, all gotten wonderful sleep. Yet I am constantly dealing with people upset that I’ve never let my son cry and telling me that I must do it, convinced that I am destroying him. They are so surprised at how happy, bright, and loving he is – why?? As if forcing your child to lose hope that you will come to him when he is in distress somehow creates better adjusted children?

  7. Emily DeJeu says

    @ Tara — you made my morning! Thanks so much for these encouraging words. It’s wonderful for all of us involved with BSS to know that it’s helping and supporting you (and other exhausted moms!)

  8. Tara says

    @ Jennifer, thank you Jennifer! You put it so nicely explaining how you recognize and respond to your child’s needs, I have felt that right from the beginning my little man has been very aware of his surroundings and we have this unspoken connection that helps me understand what he needs, that’s why I have not pushed the CIO with him. I believe that CIO works wonderfully for some and not for others. I also believe that this time is so precious and that our babies will be 15 before we know it! I am grateful for the way his gentle hands run accross my skin as he drifts off to the land of nod and I always say I can cope with his night wakings 28 days out of 30!! but when I get super tired and feel like i’m a failure cause i seem to be the only one in my circle of friends with these issues, i I access this site and it is so enlightening to know I’m not alone in the sleep deprivation!

    Thank you so much to Nicole the founder of the site and all the wonderful staff you have that help make all of us feel normal!!

  9. Emily DeJeu says

    @ Angela, @ Tara, @ Meagan, and @ Jennifer — love that you ladies are collaborating like this! Thanks for helping and encouraging each other 🙂

    @ Tricia — exactly! I wholeheartedly agree. I like your point about parents as guides, and teaching our children how to fit into family life.

    Thanks for commenting, Tricia!

  10. Jennifer says

    @ Tara – I do something similar to what Angela referred to. My daughter is almost 15 months old and I nurse her at night before bed but when she slows down a bit I ask if she is finished. If not she keeps sucking but when she is ready she lets go on her own turns over and goes to sleep – sometimes within a couple of seconds sometimes a couple of minutes but she is not a cuddler and does it on her own no crying no fussing. She sleeps in a regular bed not a crib so I lay down in the bed to nurse her at night. I let her have a little control over this and I think she appreciates that she gets to decide (let’s face it at this age they don’t have much control over anything!). I started probably three months ago and it has really been great for us. At this age communication skills are improving rapidly so talking to your son may be worth a shot :.)

    There are nights that my daughter will wake up crying (not fussing) and requests to nurse when I get her through gestures and sounds that are familiar to me. Because I know that she does sleep well most nights, in those times that she does wake there is a reason. I don’t know the reason – tummy ache? Headache? Crick in her neck? Teeth hurt? Whatever the reason, she feels the need to nurse and I fulfill her need because she is waking up for some reason. The day after this happens I try to keep an eye on her to make sure she is getting enough to drink during the day monitor what she eats and make sure I do what I can to address any daytime issue that might be affecting her at night. It usually resolves itself within a few days.

    Good luck to you! Incidentally weaning didn’t help my son sleep better, he self-weaned at 14 months – just stopped one day. That took time and patience :.) Do what you feel is best for your family and your situation.