So, you have a baby, and you’d like him or her to sleep. First let me say, Hello and Welcome! Then, let me say… Boy-howdy, have I been there! Let me give you a real quick back story to tell you how I got to the place I am today. The place where I sleep-trained all four of my babies and helped many others moms successfully learn how to sleep train a baby, without worry or fear.
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HELP! I’ve been thrown to the “how to sleep train a baby” wolves!
When my first child was born, I knew just what I was going to do. I had read ALL the books about how to sleep train a baby and knew what was right for us. (and I wasn’t one of those moms who didn’t follow through, I’m good and stubborn) About 8 weeks after he was born, I found myself at the pediatricians office, exhausted, discouraged, and desperate. My plan hadn’t worked. You see, my baby didn’t fuss for 10-15 minutes, then drift off to sleep like I was sure he would!
I wanted so badly to let my baby sleep on his tummy, but was afraid because of everything I’d read online. And, I wanted to let him self-soothe, but was afraid because of everything I had read online. And, I wanted to let him co-sleep with me, but was afraid of everything I’d read online… Hmm… I’m noticing a pattern.
At that 8 week check-up, my pediatrician said, “You have to do whatever you have to do to get some sleep!” That really struck me. He couldn’t come out and say, put him on his belly, or let him cry, or it’s OK to co-sleep, because of liability and the pressures and expectations of his title. BUT, he knew a desperate Momma when he saw one and was kind enough to look me in the eye and get the point across. Sleep is important and my baby and I both needed to be getting it! I needed to figure out how to sleep train a baby!
Before I tell you what the means, and how to sleep train a baby, let me help you understand why sleep is SUCH. A. BIG. DEAL.
Dangers of insufficient sleep in children:
- defiant behavior
- poor grades
- low attention span
- seeing the world in a negative light
- Lastly… Mental Disorders: Lack of sleep leads to various mental disorders like Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and depression source
(don’t think that because your baby is A BABY that these things don’t apply, the habits you teach in infancy will carry over into childhood)
Now let’s look at dangers of bad sleeping habits persisting into adulthood:
Seriously, I could go on. I have been reading for a decade about the no-joke negative effects of not getting consistent, uninterrupted, good sleep. This should be greatly concerning to you regarding BOTH you and your baby!
But the truth is, if you’re reading this, it’s likely that your baby can’t sleep and it’s likely your fault. Now, don’t go feeling beat-up about that. It was MY fault that my baby didn’t sleep for the first 8 weeks of his life. After all, he was a baby; what could he do?! So how is it your fault? Well, easy, you are believing a lie about sleep training. And that lie has you scared.
Training a child to sleep is a gift you are giving them that they take with them for the rest of their life. Many adults suffer from sleep deprivation. I use the word suffer because, indeed lack of sleep is called catastrophic by professionals who have seen the research of the the effects of lack of sleep. source
The ‘How To Sleep Train A Baby’ Big Fat Lie.
Now, let’s talk about the lie and move on to learning A BETTER WAY!
Have you read a sentence like this somewhere before: Letting a baby cry can cause brain damage!?
“YIKES! Brain damage! Holy cow, I have got to make SURE that doesn’t happen!”
After reading even just one scary article about cry-it-out, you’ve bought in completely to finding a no-cry-in-any-way method to get your baby to sleep. You read every gentle sleep “trick” and book you can find. You try everything they say. Then what do you find?
Your baby STILL wakes up when you lay her down, walk out of the room, take your hand off her, stop singing, etc… Or maybe you have a portion of success. Ultimately, you’re both still at risk for all the above mention side effects, because STILL no one is getting the amount of sleep they need, consistently!
What IS the truth behind these scary articles?
- Many of those studies were performed on grossly neglected babies. Let me ask you; is your baby grossly neglected?
- Many of those studies were conducted by the CDC. Whether you are pro-vax or anti-vax, I think it’s safe to say, we all have a few concerns about the CDC!?
- Many of those studies are evolutionary based. You may or may not be a Christian, either way, studies done that look at only one vantage point need to be questioned!
Let me ask you this: When was the last time you saw a mom walking around with a child who came out of her perfectly healthy, was not “grossly neglected” then suffered brain damage after appropriate sleep training?
Let me ask you another question: When was the last time you saw a mom walking through the grocery store with a defiant toddler? Or, the last time you heard a mom talk about her kid being diagnosed with ADHD, or having trouble in school?
Answer #1: never.
Answer #2: all. the. freakin’. time.
The ‘How To Sleep Train A Baby’ Truth.
Here is the truth! You ready, cuz it’s good stuff!!!
You can not raise the same child twice. No matter what decisions you make about your baby or child; tomorrow, today will be gone, and you’ll never know if doing something differently could have produced a different outcome. You Will NEVER know! It’s simply not possible.
That means, that you have to take the very best information, and formulate a decision. Ask yourself, What can I do to give my child the greatest chance for success through their life? One answer to that question is SLEEP! Read more about setting your kids up for success here and here.
You will absolutely make mistakes. Yes, it’s hard to look into the face of that precious baby and believe you will ever do anything that would be a mistake! I was certain, I would win mommy awards. I was never troubled by my baby and would have gone on sleep deprived until I finally died, if it meant not making a mistake.
Here I am, all these years later and I have made mistakes! Oh girlfriend, how I have made mistakes! To Sleep train a baby, has NOT been one of them!
I can tell you for certain, as a veteran mommy, who’s helped loads of other mommies… sleep does not have to be a mistake you look back on and wonder if you made the right choice. Never once have I said, “maybe I shouldn’t have made sleep such a priority!? NOPE! UH-UH! NEVER!
Still afraid of ruining your child?
The fact that you are so aware of the weight of your choices, shows me that you likely will not! Afraid you will hurt them? Ya, you will. If not today, then tomorrow. But it’s not going to be from sleep training.
It’s not possible to ever know if your child would have turned out differently if you’d made a different choice. You have to make the decision that is healthy and best 70% for the right here, right now, and 30% for the future.
Final truth for the day: The risks of you and your baby not getting good sleep FAR outweigh any risk of sleep training a baby.
On to the good stuff!
There is a gentle AND firm/effective way, how to sleep train a baby. Some babies make your life easy. They don’t fuss much, they fall asleep easily on their own, they nurse perfectly.
Some babies (like my first) will make you question whether you are cut out to be a mom AT ALL! While this sleep training guide will benefit any baby, it’s the moms with babies like the second that will be most grateful for the method I’m about to give.
We all want the “magic button.” The one “thing” or word, or trick or method or device or prayer that will allow our baby to sleep long enough, sound enough and effectively enough, without every crying a peep and with zero heartache to mom. It doesn’t exist and you should be leery of anything that claims to be. When has anything really great every come easy?
One last piece of wisdom I want you to think about before you embark on this adventure of learning how to sleep train a baby: when you lay a baby down with all their needs met, the only thing they need is sleep!! Diaper is dry, belly is full, no fever is present.
They don’t need snuggles, they don’t need more food, they’re not in great pain from teething (more on that another time) they need SLEEP! If you don’t allow them to get to the point of sleep, you are robbing them of vital health and doing a great disservice.
Alright so you’re convinced of how important sleep is. Now, you have to do something about it! Let’s get you started learning how to sleep train a baby by clicking the button below.
“This mama who desperately needed sleep is beyond grateful for Shelley! My baby would get up every 2 hours since birth and with her help, my baby is now only getting up once a night and is on track to sleeping all night! Thank you again Shelley!”
~Holly, TN (mom of two boys ages 3 and 6 months)
“Shelley was literally a godsend after we had our first child. I soaked up everything she said about sleep training, did my own research too, and applied it all in a way that worked for our family and our baby. I’ll be honest–it wasn’t easy… But it was SO worth it!!!”
~Stacy, MO (mom of two girls)
An Important P.S. Note!
For the sake of full disclosure, I want you to know that after that 8 week pediatric check up I mentioned in beginning, I did not come home and sleep train immediately. From 2 months-6 months old, I co-slept with my first baby. He nursed all night long at my side, while we both slept.
His constant nursing kept him from going into too deep a sleep, so he was safe. And ‘being-nursed-on’ kept me from going into too deep a sleep, so he was safe. It was the first sleep we had gotten since his birth and it was glorious!
At 6 months of age, was when I felt a heavy burden to sleep train him. That was when I started. The guide I provide can be used at any age, however my recommendation for how to sleep train a baby, is to start at six months old.
WHY 6 Months?
At this age, a baby can typically put himself into whatever position he wants to sleep in (including rolling onto his belly,) by himself, at which point you no longer need to be concerned about his sleeping position. (read this important info about sleep positioners)
Get your supplies:
Or get the baby shusher here. (this wasn’t available when I had infants, or I would have gotten one.)
Get the right kind of baby pajamas for sleep training success here.
Get a great kitchen timer like this one here. Or you could also use the timer on your phone.
And don’t forget a baby book like this one here to write down all the successes and hardships you went through for your precious baby 😉
**A semi-important p.s.s. note:
While pacifiers are not all-together-bad, if your baby uses one when you sleep train him, it is going to fall out. As a result, you are going to feel the need to put it back in for him. That is a big no-no. Starting sleep training after learning how to sleep train a baby, is the time to take the paci away during sleep and save it for pacifying during wake hours.
Have you successfully sleep trained your baby? Share in the comments below!