Tuesday, January 06, 2009

For Any Parent Who Thinks They Had a Hard Day...

I just watched a show about a family with sextuplets--six babies at once. This mother manages to get six babies to eat and sleep on a predictible schedule and by 9 months she and her husband are training for a marathon. Hello, isn't raising six babies a marathon? But more to the point, how come I can't get ONE baby on a predictible schedule?

I'm just not militant enough. If I had six, I'm sure I'd be a lot more willing to let them cry. In fact I'd probably put ear plugs in and let them go to town. But I have only the one. And he has proven that he will not just cry for twenty minutes if a need is left unmet or you want him to sleep without aid. He will cry for an hour and twenty minutes, and writhe and twist until his head is pressed firmly into the wall and he sounds like a chihuahua being eaten alive by dingos.

You can tell me all you like about how I've spoiled him, or how I need to tough it out, but I no longer believe my child will be ruined by this. Now, when he's two, there will be a new Sheriff in town.


At 4:26 PM, Blogger Samus said...

Yes! to that last line. There will be a day when you tell him to do something and he will look you right in the face and say no, and mean it. There'll be a day when he runs out into the street, or puts his (plastic) toys in the oven. I'm just saying, there won't be any question once it's time to be the sheriff, yaknow?

At 4:29 PM, Blogger Jordan E. Rosenfeld said...

Absolutely--I have a few friends with toddlers and even I want to patrol them sometimes...they're maddening little neanderthals as Karp puts it.

But babies, when they can't even talk, it's hard for me. I mean a little crying I can handle, but I won't let it go on for hours to "train" him.

At 9:49 AM, Blogger Tanya Egan Gibson said...

Hi Jordan,

Just read this post and the one from 12/29. I'm sorry if people are telling you what you "should" do. With our first, I definitely felt pressured about a lot of the same issues, such as "Why does she have a crib if you just keep letting her sleep in her bed? She'll NEVER sleep alone...blah, blah, blah..."

Do what feels right for you. Whatever makes you feel peaceful or happy or warm and fuzzy, or gives you sleep, or is just easy.

I nursed Dylan for almost 2 years and never "sleep-trained" her. When she was ready to sleep in her crib, she treated it as a happy place. At almost 4, she's very independent, not at all clingy, and very securely attached. (Went off to preschool without a single tear this September. Just "Bye, Mommy and Daddy, see you later.")

Cole does not even have a crib yet. We haven't bothered. He co-sleeps, nurses on demand, and naps in my lap while I write. I'm not proposing everyone "should" do this. (I don't think anyone should presume that what works for one person is right for someone else.) I just do it because it works for me.

Nobody is the expert about your little boy but you. (And you're already smart, so that makes you an uber-expert.)

At 5:12 PM, Blogger Jordan E. Rosenfeld said...

Tanya, I really appreciate your comment. It made me feel not alone in my choices.

At 7:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i totally agree that you guys should do whatever feels right for you and your family--but did want to add my two cents that not even ferber says to let your kid cry for hours. i think the rule of thumb is working up to 7 minutes, or something? i might be off here. the 7 minutes might -feel- like hours, but no one suggests letting them cry that long! - Emily


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