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Hi everyone, I am a mother of two and have gone through hard times with my oldest. He was not falling asleep on his own, waking up all the time, sometimes needed 45 minutes to go back to sleep (torturing my hand while doing so) - and then would be awake again as soon as I had tiptoed out of the room... So then baby number two came - and I tried pat/shush when from when he was 1 1/2 months. It worked! My most important insights:
- It takes time. It took me around 2 or 3 months to get to a point where he wouldn't cry anymore when being put into bed. Then several weeks more until I felt like I could stop making sound and patting. Then several weeks more until I felt like I could leave the room before he was asleep. All in all it probably took 5 or 6 months!! There was a point when I thought: Isnt the patting a prop? Am I ever going to be able to stop patting? That was when I still had to pat as long as he needed to go to sleep. But over time naturally the patting got shorter and shorter. I just realized he needed less of it. And then I could stop altogether. Then again: We are not talking about days, but about months.
- It is hard. I spent so many hours patting in a dark room. My back hurt badly. I was fed up. I cried, because he woke up after only 30 min of sleeping and I had to rock him back to sleep (only thing that would work). Oh, it was all a pain! But I realized quite soon that in the mornings it tended to be a lot easier, and that gave me hope that in the end it would all work out. So when things were bad for an afternoon nap or he was crying a lot at night-bedtime, I needed lots of patience and believing.
- Modifications are good I tried shushing, but it didn't impress my LO much. For him a sound that was sort of like "uuiuuuiuuiuiiii" worked. Winding down while sitting was simply impossible because he would start to complain a lot. So winding down consisted pretty much of rocking him until he was drowsy.
- Tips from the board work At one point I figured after checking typical A-times of other babies that my LO was awake for too long for his age. When I shortened the A-time putting him to bed became easier. Looking for help in the forum usually gave me useful ideas!!
- It is so rewarding!!! Oh, how I love putting my LO to bed now! It takes barely three minutes, I put him down, sing, leave the room, it's quiet. Amazing.
The nights are still not good, he needs the pacifier and right now is teething like crazy. So lots of waking up. But just for the sake of uncomplicated bringing-to-bed-times was all worth it! We started with him needing to be rocked to sleep (which would have led to years of trouble, as it did with my 3-years-old who still until today doesnt go to sleep independently), and look at us now!  :D
So if you are in doubt: Don't give up on pat-shush. Having to deal with the consequences of accidental parenting for YEARS is so much worse than some weeks of increased effort introducing independent sleep!!!!

Wise words. Thanks for sharing.

Pick up / put down. I was doubtful it would work. Even more doubtful I could simply comfort my child in cot by reassurance after doing pu/pd... but it works. Only took implement of it and now at 6 months a rub on the belly and sitting until calm and babe puts himself back to sleep.

More PU/PD success - my son struggled to get to sleep tonight and cried badly. In I went and he settled with 2 pick ups and then my hand on him and he went off to sleep. Also he had a soiled diaper the other night and woke fully.... took a few goes but back to sleep he went after a full change. Amazing technique. Never would have believed it would work prior to trying it, I feel so much better for trying it. My son is really trusting and I can see how secure he feels when I am there reassuring him about going back to sleep.

That is so wonderful to hear :)
Thanks for sharing.


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