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Controlled crying Lock Rss

hi there,
I know there are 4 other posts on controlled crying in this section and I have read them through but all the situations are different to mine so here goes...

My brother and his wife practice controlled crying as do a couple of other friends of ours. From what I understand they let their babies cry for up to an hour at a time from the time they are a few weeks old, not allowing them to wake up from 10 pm till 7 am and then after a few months they are in bed from 7 pm till 7 am. I am told that my nephew slept through from 7 till 7 from the time he was 6 weeks old.

I strongly disagree with this and as a result my 10 month old daughter still wakes once or twice a night. I am 8 weeks pregnant and my husband is starting to wonder whether perhaps we should try controlled crying for the next one to avoid the same problem, I disagree but one of our friends told him the other day that he should just put his foot down and say this is how it is going to be, and since then he has been pushing this a bit.

Although I agree sleep would be a wonderful thing I am still not convinced and would love to hear what everyone else thinks about this.


(PS, don't get me wrong, I don't look down on other people who do believe in this and have never said anything to my brother or to our friends more than to say I couldn't do it myself, I just don't believe it's right for me)

Erin,W.A. kids 12,5,2 and 1

Hi Erin

Firstly CONGRATULATIONS on your pregnancy.

I'm sure you've read my posts in the other topics, I really feel strongly about this. I'm no expert but the way the nurse at the clinic explained it made sense to me. During the first 12 months our babies are building trust in us and if we leave them crying what must they be thinking? She said they do feel abandoned. I don't think a baby cries for no reason. And yes sometimes they do want to be picked up and cuddled - is this 'bad' behaviour that should be discouraged? Your baby has been as close to you as anyone could be for nine months - and then they come into this world and are put in a room all by themselves and expected to put themselves to sleep - it doesn't make sense to me. The nurse said the more secure your baby feels in the early days/weeks/months the more independant they will be as they get older, as they know you will always be there for them, and she also said that you can't spoil them. I used Comfort Settling which is recommended by Karitane (sleep clinic) the hospital and our local clinic also recommend these techniques. Basically you keep reassuring your baby that you are there by patting or singing to them - they don't recommend you leave a baby crying for more than a couple of minutes. I never even left my son for that long - he sleeps through the night with no problems and doesn't want to be picked up all the time like some people suggest happens if you 'spoil' them. After a few days I didn't even need to go back in and reassure him. I would just wrap him and put him in his bassinette and he would go off to sleep by himself. I also had him sleeping next to me in his bassinette in our room for the first 4 months and he had no trouble going into his own room after that. Anyhow Karitane have a website with all the info about settling and sleep techniques, the address is:

Just like you didn't say anything to your friends about controlled crying - I don't think they should be pushing their views on youor your husband. Talk to your husband and show him the website so he knows there are other options out there. I know everyone has their own views and methods and all babies are different, but I know a lot of parents who have successfully used the Karitane techniques. Also maybe talk to your child health nurse and ask for some alternative techniques to controlled crying. As far as I know it's not recommended - that's been my experience. The nurse actually said it's not recommended especially for babies under 12 months. I hope this helps.

All the best
Hi again Erin

I've already put up another post - but it's in the moderators hands so I don't know if this or the other one will go up first. But I forgot to mention that my son slept through from 7pm - 5 or 6am from 9 weeks old - and I never used controlled crying. I've never pushed him into any sort of routine, except that now I put him to bed at around 7pm every night (some exceptions) but he's tired then anyway. He's just found his own pattern, and I think it's because I've always been pretty flexible with him.

One other thing I forgot to say was the nurse also talked about drug dependant mothers and their babies when she was talking about the effects of controlled crying. She said that a lot of babies of drug dependant mothers became very detached and withdrawn as they learned that no one was going to answer their cries and they usually cry when someone does pick them up as they are not used to physical contact - this is the very extreme end of the scale but as with everything there are varying degrees in between. I know every reasonable and loving parent only does what they see as best for their child, I just thought I would share my views and experience - I am not judging any other parents. I just don't believe that a newborn baby has the capacity to be manipulative - if they cry they are in need of something, they aren't trying to wrap you around their little finger.

It's a decision for you and your husband to make together without others interfering.

Hope this helps
Thanks Jasmine,
You seem to feel pretty much as I feel, I had a quick look at that site and am quite keen on the idea of comforting the baby to sleep in the cot,(Ashley has always breastfed herself to sleep and thus expects the same in the middle of the night) so while I like to keep my options open in case I hear of a better idea I think that's what we will be trying and my husband is quite happy with that at the moment too.

I must admit I was quite offended when our friend suggested that but haven't said anything to anyone for fear of being labeled as an overreacting pregnant woman, but I would never be so presumptuous as to tell another mother how to raise their children and really expect the same from others. I think the best thing anyone can do is to give advice if it is asked for and let each mother decide for themselves what is best for their child as we are all different.

Thanks again, that was a great help

Erin,W.A. kids 12,5,2 and 1

Hi Erin,

I agree every mum must do whats right for them. I just wanted to share my experiences.

I did control crying and found it successful. There is more to control crying than just that, there is teaching baby to put themselves to sleep using SLEEP ASSOCIATIONS. Adult sleep associations might be: getting into p.j's, brush teeth, lie down and turn out light. This tells us it's time for sleep. Babies also needs sleep associations. With my 6 month old I use: bath, change into p.j's, cradle in my arms with dummy for few minutes, place in cot and sing lullaby. I do the same routine every nights and she knows and is happy to go to sleep.

The CC was only needed for a week, with only couple of days of intensive work. Even without CC the sleep associations are an excellent tool. I recomend reading "Silent Night" as it really explains how babies sleep etc.

Anyway, be confident that whatever method you choose will be right for your family, good luck.


Ps I waited till Lisa was over 3 months before using CC ( before this is the fourth trimester, but thats another story).

Pamela, SA, mum to Lisa 23.10.03

Hi Erin,
So tough isn't it when you're bombarded with "help" from well meaning friends.
At the end of the day, I myself believe that you should follow your heart and do what you're happy and most comfortable with. I had a friend who was still breastfeeding her daughter once or twice a night and she is 14 months old. People were advising her to stop, all she could say was "why, when I'm happy to do it, it's not affecting anyone else". I think if it becomes a problem to you then that's when you should seek help.
I am Early Childhood trained and whilst studying we came across the MANY varied versions of controlled crying. I think the name has been branded for a number of different techniques that can be quite different. The name itself is quite horrendous I think. I have chatted to Tressillian a number of times about controlled crying, which they call self settling. I think it's similar to what Jasmine was explaining. This technique worked wonders when Levi (my son) was going through a bad patch.
The only other piece of advice I would like to give you that I believe helped me, is to be fully informed on all methods and techniques, listen to all advice (even the annoying ones) and choose a technique that suits you. It may not suit others but who cares, it's your baby and no one knows them like you do.
If you wanted to chat to Tressillian (they are midwives trained in helping families with young children). You may not agree with all they say, but challenge them if you don't, ask questions, I did.
Their number is a free call 1800 637 357, 24 hours a day.
I also like the Karitane website, (good on you Jasmine, and hi)
Good luck!

Laura DS July 03, DD Oct 05, DD Nov 08

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