Frequently Asked Questions
Nope! I take from many methods to offer parents a choice of what works best for your family. On our call and in the plan handouts, I explain the different options thoroughly so you can make an informed choice. If the method you choose isn’t working as well as we’d like, I help you make tweaks to make it work, or possibly choose something different.
Not at all. I consider CIO “Put him in his room and shut the door. The End.” Just because your pediatrician and MIL say it’s the only way doesn’t mean it’s true! I have a broad range of methods from the gentlest, most responsive, to more “rip off the bandaid”, and it’s YOUR decision about what is best for your baby.
There is a broad range of support you can offer your baby to reduce crying or upset feelings during this process. That being said, I want to make it clear that there really isn’t a “no cry” method. The person who makes the decision about whether crying happens or not is the baby! Even moms who don’t work on improving sleep may have babies who cry, despite their best efforts. So a BIG part of the coaching process is coaching you, the parents, on what your baby’s crying means, and what level of crying you’re ok with and what you’re not.
It is super hard to hear your baby cry. As his loving, very attached mother, you experience a visceral response to his cries. Between my coaching and the support of this group, we will work on your feelings around the crying and figure out the best way to address it. No one finds this process to be a cakewalk. But it’s quick, and with our support you will go from being anxious to being a wise cheerleader and support person for your baby.
Babies are ready for all kinds of things, at all different rates. I will work with you to figure out what method will be best and what he’s capable of depending on their age and how they respond to things. Generally, 4-6 months is a great age to start working on putting themselves to sleep if you haven’t already, but there’s a lot that can be done before and of course after to get things on the right track. I don’t make any recommendations that aren’t developmentally appropriate.
Absolutely! We love attached mamas. Most of my clients consider themselves attachment parents. If you wear your baby all day, breastfeed on demand, even want to part-time cosleep, we can help! And it can all be done while gently supporting your baby in the way you feel is right.
You don’t have to give it up! Part-time cosleeping is allowed and even encouraged. Many families like to bring the baby to bed with them in the early hours of the morning for a little extra sleep or take naps together.
I do encourage starting the night with your baby in their own sleeping space because it’s more conducive to sleep for them at that point, and leaving a baby alone in an adult bed is a safety concern. Plus, it’s nice to be able to put the baby to bed and go enjoy some alone time with your partner – when was the last time you drank a glass of wine and enjoyed an entire episode of Game of Thrones without having to get up to tend the baby?
It will absolutely work. 80+% of the moms in Sleep Group are fully breastfeeding and no one’s nursing relationship has been harmed. You are still welcome to feed your baby during the night, or we can work toward cutting out night feeds. Either way, if a nursing issue were to pop up we’d address it right then and there (even bringing in IBCLC support if needed). Boobs are basically magic and your supply will adjust to getting more rest at night. MANY breastfed babies sleep through the night naturally at a young age, with no detriment to their nursing relationship.
Probably, yes. The cornerstone of good sleep development is helping your baby fall asleep on his own, without needing to be fed, rocked, held, bounced, walked, etc. If your baby is falling asleep during his night feed and transferring easily, that’s great! But it doesn’t mean they're able to put themselves back to sleep when they wake – we’ll work on that skill, and then they’ll be able to go right back to sleep without your intervention. It also typically leads to far fewer night wakings.
Often, the partner who isn’t the primary nighttime caregiver doesn’t understand how challenging it is to lose sleep night after night, not knowing when the baby will wake or having her keep you awake while cosleeping.
This is where I get a little bit snarky – if your husband doesn’t think you need sleep help, have him take over night duty for a few nights. Go sleep in the guest room, put earplugs in, and have him deal with the bedtime routine, night wakings, and night feedings (either bringing the baby to you or giving a bottle). Either you’ll get the sleep you’ve been craving, or he’ll agree it’s time to get some help.
I’ve been doing this work and research a LONG time. I care very deeply about the bond between mother and child – it’s my life’s work. I truly believe that if your baby ends up doing some crying during this process, it’s not going to have a lasting impact on his emotional health or on your relationship. In my experience, any distress the baby experiences is no more than the occasional bout of upset in the car seat, or when being left with a new caregiver. No one says that those things are detrimental to a baby’s emotional health.
A lot of theses articles focus on reasons why NEWBORNS should be responded to all the time, and I am in complete agreement. But babies grow, and change, and their abilities to cope with confusion and develop self-soothing tools also grow and change.
Here’s an article that talks about a very elegant study on the longterm effects of sleep training. There have also been many, MANY studies on the negative effects of sleep deprivation on the whole family – it can increase risk of depression, can affect milk supply, overall maternal health – not to mention car accidents. Many people brush off these risks far more easily, and I think that’s not only unfair, it’s downright unsafe.
Shots can throw off sleep schedules. Make sure to wait 3 days post-vaccine before starting sleep training.
That depends on you. There are no requirements for how often you need to post updates or ask questions. However, the more you participate, the more you will get out of it. As far as how long it will be for your baby, that depends on your goals and how they respond. Most families see a significant change within 5 nights and a big change within two weeks. Yes, during the process you may end up losing some sleep because you’re not taking the path of least resistance. But if you make the commitment to the process for just a short while, your rewards will be awesome and long-lasting!
Very high! I would say 90+% of the parents in the group meet their goals and are very satisfied with their results. But, YOU have to be willing to do the work. I’m here to help you, but I’m not a mind reader. If you seek help, you will find it.