So We Tried CIO | Giftie Etcetera: So We Tried CIO

Saturday, May 12, 2007

So We Tried CIO

We've done a modified version of letting Ander cry it out before, at bedtime, where we mostly stayed in the room with him and comforted him, but wouldn't let him out of his crib. And I thought that was appropriate at the time, because he was about 8 months old (maybe? - it gets hard to remember) and didn't understand us leaving him.

But since about December, when he got really sick, we've been letting him fall asleep on the living room floor (which sometimes doesn't happen until after 10 p.m.) and go to our bed when he wakes between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. I'm exhausted, Alan is exhausted, and lately, Ander is whiney and exhausted.

So we are doing CIO again. For a week now, I've been tucking Tigger and Ander's "spot" (his pillow) iin the crib each night. Well, last night, at 8 p.m. as usual, I tucked Tigger in. Then at 9 p.m., I tucked Ander in. He was sleepy, but not asleep. I said "night, night" and left the room.

Oh the screaming. The fussing. The baby curse words that flew. He was mad. But since I've been teaching him with Tigger, I knew he knew what to do, and sure enough, less than five minutes later, Ander was asleep. I think 9 p.m. will be bedtime from now on.

11 p.m. and 2 a.m. were more of a problem. I knew I didn't want to co-sleep. I was really against it when Ander was tiny (<4 months) because I was scared to squish him, but we put him in his crib and when he woke, used a co-sleeper, so he was actually quite safe. But since December, we've been co-sleeping once he wakes at night, and we've totally spoiled him. He thinks our bed is his bed!

So at 11 p.m., I checked on him, changed his diaper (because otherwise he leaks through and gets cold), and tucked he and Tigger back in with a kiss and a "night, night." I'm not sure how long he cried, but it was a long time. And I, of course, didn't sleep a wink. But I knew he wasn't hurt, and I know he needs to understand that he cannot sleep with us, so I didn't cave. And to Alan's credit, he didn't either. Eventually, he went back to sleep. It wasn't as bad at 2 a.m., but it definitely wasn't pleasant, either.

This morning, Ander is quite tired. He didn't sleep enough, obviously. But the rule, from now on, will be 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. in his crib. He can sleep, or play, or do whatever he wants, but he cannot come to our bed. He's a toddler now, and it's time. I just wish we hadn't taught him to come to our bed so we wouldn't have to go through this now! :/



Anonymous said...

I remember when we would do that with Nicolas and you were horrified that I would let him cry in his crib. I told you then to just wait, you'll find out. I'm glad the day has finally come for you. hahahaha! Seriously though, if you are consistent and do not waiver from what you are saying, it will take about a week and Ander will be ASKING to go in his bed. It is very important though that you NEVER let him in your bed for that week...not during the day, not just to play, nothing. Stick to it and each day it will get easier and easier. I know it's hard to hear your baby cry, but all of you will benefit in the long run. Good luck!!

Mathochist said...

Sleep issues are so hard! I personally hate CIO, but I know other people who swear by it. I strongly suspect it works better or worse depending on the temperament of the child.

Co-sleeping (in room, not necessarily in bed) works best for me getting the most, best quality sleep. But it lasts well into toddlerhood, so you have to be willing to be in it for the long haul. Sammy is just now deciding about 1/3 to 1/2 of the time that he'd rather go to sleep in his "big boy" (toddler) bed in his room, rather than in Mama's bed like Katie does. Katie has no compunctions about letting me know loudly, every time she wakes up, that my bed is more comfortable/comforting than her "tib."

Anyway, I hope y'all can all get some good sleep very soon.

Giftie Etcetera said...

Stac my cousin...

Um, wrong person. I've never been horrified by CIO. That would be my husband. I've never been horrified by a kid crying at all. Again, Alan. Perhaps I was shocked that Nicolas would cry, since Brendan wouldn't? I don't remember...I just know that I've never had a problem with a child crying themselves to sleep, so I think you might be confusing me with someone else. :)