The dreaded sleep training & sleep regression.

Adeline is now 16 weeks old, she’s actually ‘touchwood’ (go on, touchwood), always been quite good at going down to sleep, or sleeping in general.

  • 6pm fast asleep
  • 1.30am-2.30 up for a feed
  • 5.30 time to wake up!

I can usually get her back to sleep after an hour if I’m lucky, but she does seem to like this time for waking up.

We heard/read that at 16 weeks babies start sleep regression, so it’s a good time to start teaching them to self settle by starting to sleep train. There’s a clue in the title- training is hard work, so it isn’t going to just happen overnight is it!

I remember Thom’s friend was asking after Adeline and she said “Wait till 16weeks sleep regression it’s a shocker”.

I remember thinking god, what is that? We started to read up about it and stopped in the end as we were just freaking ourselves out, we thought how will we ever get through that? And dreading it, Adeline was only a few weeks old then so we stopped reading, stopped worrying and lived for the present day not the future. What was the point in worrying about something that was not even happening yet. Well well well.. here we are!

Our routine

I’ve always been keen on a routine, I think probably because my mum has always been a strong believer, so it’s rubbed off on me. Funny really because I remember complaining about it when I was old enough to.

I think a good routine works! I mean even as adults, don’t we all have some kind of routine? Maybe it’s your morning routine or your nighttime routine- but it’s a routine!

I believe routines give infants and toddlers a sense of security and stability. I believe it helps them feel safe and secure in their environment. The older they get i think it helps them gain an understanding of everyday events and procedures and learn what is expected of them, as routines make their environment more predictable! Bonus if you’re going on holidays or trips away.

So our bedtime routine so far for Adeline is;

  • 5.30pm: bath time

Whilst bath time is happening one of us will prep the room so it’s cosy, warm and has Adeline’s projecting moon & star light on and nursery rhymes playing. #babysleeponspotify We make sure it’s a calm and quiet environment with her pjs at the ready!

  • 5.50pm: feed time
  • 6.00pm: story time and sleep. (Rocked to sleep)

I say story time but she’s struggles to stay awake.

Prepping for Sleep Training

Honestly I’ve had sleepless nights worrying about Sleep Training. Mainly because when I first Googled it , it mentioned something about ‘knocking all bad habits on the head’ and one listed rocking your baby to sleep as one of them. ‘If you rock your baby to sleep and don’t break this habit your baby will expect this always’. I mean how sad is that? For someone to say that it’s a bad habit, like you’re doing something categorically wrong. All night I kept thinking- Oh my god, I’m doing it all wrong, and how not being able to comfort or rock Adeline to sleep made me sad. I was up all night after reading this article, I love rocking and comforting Adeline and someone is telling me it’s a bad thing, how can doing this be a ‘bad habit’?

I’m lucky to have mummy friends who also agreed with me and whilst I was freaking out, one of them even pointed out how Rockabye baby the nursery rhyme is all about rocking a baby so surely there wouldn’t be a nursery rhyme about it if it was a bad thing. Oh I’ve lost endless sleep over it!

At the end of the day, as parents all you want to do is do what is right for your baby, and I’m terrified of mucking it up.. aren’t we all?

So back to Sleep Training, there are many ways of doing this, and either way is going to result in you as parents having your patience tested and also listening to your baby being upset. I have read there are two effective ways of doing this in my Gina Ford book.

Method 1: pick up put down—pick-up-put-down.amp

Method 2: controlled crying

Now I don’t know about you but as a Mama when Adeline cries or is upset for whatever reason it hits a nerve which makes me cry. For example she had Colic as a newborn up until about 12 weeks and every-night she would be so upset and I would cry with her because it was so awful to see her in so much pain.

So because of this I knew the controlled crying method would be an absolute disaster and too upsetting for me let alone her!

So here we are; Method 1: pick up put down. And if this doesn’t work Gina Ford suggests then trying Method 2.. (gulp).

Thom is off this week so we thought it would be a good time to start sleep training Adeline. She is now 16 weeks and apparently it’s a good time to start as this is also the start of sleep regression- what a fun time for Adeline and us.

16 weeks is an actual bitch; we have a huge growth spurt to contend with, sleep regression, injections and sleep training. Who would of thought it!

We are on day 2 of what I think is Adeline sleep regressing and also the start of Method 1 (pick up put down).

I have given Thom the job of tackling this as I think it will be good for him (and I can’t cope with seeing her upset). I do the breast feeding and the nights, so its only fair-

PLUS if Thom smashes this he will so proud of himself and feel like he has done something. As I’ve said in my previous posts, it can be really hard for partners to find a role when the Mum is exclusively breast feeding (and when your baby refuses the bottle).

How’s it going?

So far so good people (Fingers crossed)! I’m learning from previous experiences that some days can be better then others. And that’s kind of what is happening with the sleep regression. I’m just glad every night isn’t bad at the moment.

Method 1

So far Adeline has only had to be put down and not even picked up! We have gone for the hand on chest with a quiet shhh for settling her. On a night she always self settles anyway unless she’s hungry then I feed her and she will usually just fall asleep straight away.

The other night she was up every single hour and just chatted away for what felt like hours, but she did manage to fall asleep without me rocking her or holding. Then last night she slept fine with no random waking!

It’s making me a nervous wreck each evening wondering wether it’s going to be a good or bad night. Honestly after the waking every hour night I felt terrible the next day! I even said to Thom that I didn’t know how I even managed it when she was newborn because she was up every hour for a feed.

I do feel very lucky now she only wakes up twice – once at usually 1.30-2.30 for a feed and then again at 5.30. I think that’s pretty good going when she’s only having breast milk, I did imagine it being a lot worse at her age. I mean I do know some friends’ babies who sleep through but I don’t want to compare! Every baby is different. I think Adeline is doing amazing.

So fellow bloggers/readers keep your fingers crossed for us!

Every milestone is so significant,challenging and scary but when you’ve passed it and smashed it you feel like super parents!!

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