Works For Me Wednesday- Sleep Training

What is the surest way to make sure your kid doesn’t sleep well at night? Write a post about how great he is sleeping. Seriously, no sooner did I hit publish and the little man started waking up in the night again. And I am not about to start feeding in the night again after I have dipped my toe in the sweet, sweet water that is a full night’s sleep.

So we began the super fun task that is sleep training. I am not a fan of the straight crying it out method, but I am also not one for just letting the kid wake up willy nilly for now until eternity. So, in the wise, wise words of Robert Deniro in the parenting how-to Meet the Fockers: we are Ferberizing him.

The Ferber method has worked well for three children now. And by worked well I mean it honestly has taken us one night of training each time. The premise is when the baby wakes up and starts crying you go in, give him his pacifier if he uses one. Or do whatever you have to do to comfort him/her, but you can’t pick them up. After a few seconds of comforting, you leave the room. Then you come back in 5 minutes if they haven’t stopped crying. Comfort again, wait 10 minutes. Comfort again, wait 15 minutes. From then on you wait at 15 minute intervals until they stop crying.

All three kids we have made it to 15 and then we are good for the night. I am not sure that is typical though. I am sure for some kids it takes longer. Then the next night, your intervals go 10, 15, 20. The next night 15, 20, 25. And so on. Like I said, I have never had to go past one night. And although the crying it out seems a bit painful (for the momma, I am hoping the kid is fine), when you are timing it, it is a bit more manageable.

So we are sleeping again. And it is heavenly. Thank you Ferber, whoever you are. You make a momma happy.

For more tips, head over to We Are That Family.


  1. That’s exactly what we did with our son. It took only a night or two and he was sleeping soundly again.
    .-= Allison´s last blog ..The Biggest Climb =-.

  2. I’m hoping this works with my daughter who is 3 months. Not sure when I’m going to start it. When I tried it with my son, I couldn’t calm him without getting him out so I just let him cry it out (eventually – around 8 months) and it helped me make it through it to say ok waiit 15 minutes, ok 10 more, ok you’ve already gone this far you don’t want to ruin it, etc. =)
    .-= The Activity Mom´s last blog .."Eat, Nap, Play" (Plus a Giveaway!) =-.

  3. I’ll admit upfront that I’m a happy co-sleeper, but I just wanted to toss one comment into the mix here…
    Not all babies are the same. I have a baby right now who is easy going and yes, he’d cry for a few minutes then go to sleep. He would probably be out by the 10 minute segment, not even needing the 15minute one. My last son, however, could scream for an hour if left alone. He needed human contact to be able to calm down.
    So if your baby takes to this method gently (as the author’s children seem to) then that’s one thing, but if your baby screams or even cries for an extended period of time then you should really look into something else. I used “The No Cry Sleep Solution” by Elizabeth Pantley with my last son. It’s a little slower than Ferber (because there’s no cry-it-out parts), but it worked well for my high-needs child.
    .-= MommyBee´s last blog ..WFMW: Pre-pulling ‘leftovers’ =-.

  4. I need to do this with my 13 month old who still wakes up to nurse! :0)

  5. That worked great with the first three kids. I am at a loss what to do with Little Miss #5. She doesn’t cry. SHE SCREAMS. I haven’t been able to find it in my heart to stick to the method that has worked so well before – I have the bags under my eyes to prove it.

  6. We did this too! It works WONDERS!!! I LOVE to sleep at night;)

    I would love it if you would link this to my Tuesday’s Tips at http://www.couponomicstimuluspackage.com/2010/04/another-great-way-to-extend-your.html

    .-= Lori @ Couponomic Stimulus Package´s last blog ..Wednesday’s Words of Wisdom =-.

  7. I was a sleep nazi when my kids were babies. They’re all pretty good sleepers now…well most of them. 2 out of 3 aint bad.
    .-= Olivia´s last blog ..Bridal Shower Gift =-.

  8. Interesting! Wish I’d known this earlier on, it would have been handy with 8 youngsters! But, we survived!
    .-= Anne-Marie´s last blog ..Works For Me Wednesday: Kid Pleasing Mac N’ Cheese Variation =-.

  9. I can’t do it. My son is in my room and half the night in my bed and wakes 3 – 8 times per night. At 9 months old. My daughter was never like this, she was in her room at 2.5 months and waking only once. Of course, now, at 2, she still sometimes wakes up once. I didn’t consider her “sleeping through the night” with any regularity until around 21 months. Oh well…I’ll sleep when I’m dead. :)
    .-= Kate´s last blog ..Introducing Solids: What, When, How =-.

  10. Deana Birks says:

    I was never brave enough to try Ferber when mine were little. Of course, my 11 yr old still cannot get to sleep at a decent hour on any given night, so…go figure.
    .-= Deana Birks´s last blog ..Learn to like it soggy =-.

  11. Liberty says:

    Yeah it works. I think letting them cry is only really hard with the first baby. At least I was so desperate for sleep, I was totally over it after #1. We put it to use with #’2 2, 3, and 4 and it worked without fail.

  12. We are in the process of trying to put our 2 year old in her own bed. I know it will be difficult. I might have to try this Ferber method :)

    Thanks for the tip.
    .-= LaVonne´s last blog ..Ways We Save the Environment =-.

  13. Kim @ DomesticGeekGirl says:

    I remember those sleepless nights all too well.

    I spent many a night sleeping on the nursery floor, having fallen asleep “not picking them up”.

    When they were old enough I finally used the “excuse method.” I would get them settled in bed, then come up with an excuse to leave the room, and tell them I’d be back in a few minutes. I would come back and they’d often have fallen asleep waiting for me.
    .-= Kim @ DomesticGeekGirl´s last blog ..Wordless Wednesday: And the Forecast is… =-.

    • Yes! I have used the “excuse method” with great success when my child is reluctant to go to sleep. I don’t think it would work on a baby, though, since they sort of live in the Now with no sense of waiting.
      .-= ‘Becca´s last blog ..Earth Day handout =-.

  14. Got an award for you :)
    .-= Leslie´s last blog ..Blog Award from the Awesome Frugal Bug! =-.

  15. Like The Activity Mom, my son would not be soothed unless he was picked up. In fact, he got more out of control if we went in and didn’t pick him up. So we went straight crying it out (during which I left my husband in the house and took a heart-pounding, skin-on-fire walk through the neighborhood). It worked though, and he has slept great ever since. Now number two is 6 months and still waking up twice. I need to do something, but don’t have the heart yet (or the energy for that matter). Maybe this post will inspire me!
    .-= Kim´s last blog ..Small Steps through Dark Tunnels =-.

  16. Valerie says:

    I tried the Ferber method with my son (who is now 7), along with every other method on the planet. It seriously just made him more upset than if I’d never gone in there in the first place. Go figure.

    With my daughter (who is now 2), we’ve been spoiled. ‘Nuff said. ;)

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