Navigating the world of baby sleep and sleep training can be confusing and conflicting. Here are some of the books that I’ve been hacking away at that you may find of value:
“The Baby Sleep Solution” by Suzy Giordano, “The Baby Coach”
This one I have read the least amount. It seems like she supports the cry it out method. I’m not sure if I’ll finish it or just pick out bits and pieces that would be helpful to me.
“The No-Cry Sleep Solution” by Elizabeth Pantley
She definitely doesn’t support crying it out, hence the title. She says, “The bottom line is there are a wide variety of effective approaches to helping a child sleep better. If you could avoid making your child cry endlessly to achieve better sleep, then why wouldn’t you?” Her book is a much slower approach with the creation of a sleep chart as the starting point (I honestly can’t be bothered).
“Secrets of the Baby Whisperer” by Tracy Hogg with Melinda Blau
The Baby Whisperer is half way between crying it out and not letting them cry at all. I picked up this book when Ella was a baby and had to put it down. I started my parenting by going with the flow and letting what feels natural transpire. Then I picked up this book and things got confusing. I was told that the things I was using to put Ella to sleep were props and should be avoided. For example, letting a baby nurse to sleep would be considered a prop. But when you look at the natural science of breast milk, it’s no wonder babies fall asleep. I believe it’s designed that way when we consider the hormones within milk and the effects it has on the body. Besides, it’s the only weapon I got.
However, I do like the concept of starting with where you plan to finish (if you don’t want to rock a 50 lb child to sleep, then don’t start when they are a baby). But this concept isn’t always feasible when you’re desperate. There are so many times I’ve put her in the baby swing because I had was in dire need for her to sleep.
In the end, Ella wasn’t sleeping and it seemed I was achieving the opposite of what my intended goal was – to sleep. Therefore, I put the book down and found two others to be helpful (“The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding” and “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child”). Now that I have Jack, I have pulled “The Baby Whisperer” book out again. I’m still curious about it and feel strangely drawn to it. Without reading it and just going from memory, I have remembered the EASY strategy and have benefited from that routine. Who knows if I’ll read the rest of it? Perhaps it’s that nagging feeling of never letting a book go unfinished that is at play here.
“The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding” by La Leche League International
This book primarily gave me the heart and vision behind breastfeeding. I proudly nursed my daughter until 3 ½ years old. We’ll see how long I last with Jack considering I’m on milk supply medication right now. My goal is to do as long as possible with him too. The thing I like about this book is how chill and “go with the flow” it is. When I was wound up and stressed out about all the other information that seems to be conflicting and confusing, I came back to this book and sighed a breath of relief. The heart of the book supports my style of taking things as they come and one day at a time. It definitely aligns with attachment theory and the concept of the fourth trimester. For me, it reminds me to go back to my parent instincts and marvel at the beauty of having a baby rather than trying to figure it all out. I put down “The Baby Whisperer” book after reading this one.
“Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child” by Marc Weissbluth, MD
I like the science behind this book. The 2 things that I’ve gleaned from this book are:
- No more than 2 hour wakefulness since they last awake time
- A clock schedule that helped me figure out my routine
I’ve come back to this book with Jack and it’s the primary book I am focusing on right now. I don’t support his ideas of crying it out but he does offer other solutions too. There is a wealth of knowledge in this book and it covers a lot of the science behind sleep. It’s easier for me to get on board when I understand the research behind why sleep is so important to over physical and brain health.