did you ever let V cry it out?

hello world,

i received a text message from a very good friend of mine who has a 6 month old boy, baby Z. i’ve never met him, but i’ve seen pictures and he’s a healthy, hungry, growing boy. in the text, my friend followed up on an email exchange we’d had a couple months ago. she sent out a link to a blog post arguing that letting a baby “cry it out” was not only bad for the baby, but bad for society as a whole because of the implicit lessons taught.

i responded that we’ve always accepted that V has a certain degree of responsibility for herself. if she’s hungry, she should let us know. if she needs something, she should let us know. especially when she was very young and no one was sleeping much. we got great advice from her pediatrician and haven’t looked back.

the first night i didn’t rock her to sleep, she cried for an hour. it was possibly one of the most horrible nights that i’ve had with her, including the night she spit up so many times that we went through all of the sheets for the crib. but, i feel strongly that she is responsible for herself and should have the ability to settle herself down without me or anyone else.

my friend’s questions was, what happens when she decides that she doesn’t want to go to sleep? the reality is that she understands the pattern and what happens next. we do bedtime between 7p and 8p. sometimes she’s not ready to go upstairs the first time we ask her. the second time, it’s not a question. we brush teeth, wash up, put on jams, read books and sometimes we snuggle and sometimes she just wants to lay down.

it doesn’t mean she’s falls asleep right away, though. it does mean that she stays in her bed until morning. one night, she sang for probably an hour – all the silly songs she knows interspersed with counting in spanish. it was hilarious and not dangerous in anyway. she wasn’t under stress, she wasn’t crying her eyes out. when she cries so hard that it’s clear she’s not settled, i’ll go back up and try to settle her, but she doesn’t get up. if she’s overtired or too amped up, it’s understandably difficult to sort yourself out. and she’s letting us know that she needs help.

the things that gets me is that because every baby is a different person, it’s impossible to have the same tricks work for each mommy. but, the framework is probably transferable.

loving my sleepy girl,


ps- this morning she got to play with some big kids and she had so much fun that not only did she take a 3 hour nap, but she only read 2 books before bed. we sang 1 song a couple times and her eyes started to close. so awesome.


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