I am finding Bailey can be so hard to deal with regard to his sleep... Especially after night duty when I have not slept and I am home alone with him. He can be so defiant, for example someone came to the door just as he fell to sleep, this woke him, then it was a screaming match to try and get him down again, as he is doing now. See the thing, if he doesn't have some sort of sleep in the afternoon he is captain cranky pants and completely unbearable come 6pm. Catch 22 really. I suppose since I have had such little sleep then I get a little more frustrated.
It took Justin and I a lot to change our bad habits and those we got Bailey into. To change these we were admitted to "the Ellen Baron Centre" (AKA - sleep school). It was here that we were taught how to undo all of the bad habits we had so easily go ourselves into, thus making life so much harder than it needed to be in the early months of Bailey's life. Our biggest mistake was that we would let Bailey fall asleep in our arms then whilst asleep place him into his cot, every so gently so as not to wake him. It was always a big accomplishment if we could keep him to sleep.... we probably only had a 50% success rate!We spent countless hours trying to put him and to keep him asleep. This was so exhausting, but still it was easier for us to do this than listen to him scream!
I am sure as much as the staff at the centre wanted to ignore the fact that we were actually practicing controlled crying with him, in my eyes it was. We said good night and he was put into his cot - left to attempt to self settle, when he started screaming then we would go in and settle him, not removing him from his cot. Once the screaming and crying had stopped we would leave again. This process was repeated until he was finally asleep, sometimes taking up to 1.5hours.... Sound like controlled crying?
We were also taught that babies need structure and should not be demand fed but fed in routine.... this completely contradicting what any midwife or child health nurse would tell you.... Babies in fact need routine! From the time of waking they must be put down again only 1.5 hours later, in this time we would feed and play (bath if needed).
After doing these (what seem like simple) things for a whole week we were mentally and physically drained and were well and truly ready to leave the place! Did it teach us anything? Hmmmm maybe, maybe not, we still cannot put our fingers on it. Can Bailey self settle? Hmmmm on occasion and only when he wants to. Is our bad habits and possible laziness what got us into this never ending sleep issue problems now? Hmmmmm Most certainly!Mental note...is there is every to be a baby Fox no. 2 - we will not make the same sleeping mistakes again!