As I posted in my last post, I will be discussing the Ferber method or cry it out. I only tried the Ferber method when my daughter was sleeping in her crib, was already sleeping a solid 6 hour chunk of time, and was at 6 months of age. The Ferber method is not recommended for babies under 3 months of age. I wasn’t comfortable starting until my daughter was closer to 6 months since it coincided with transitioning to her crib. But, it’s your call.
The first thing you have to know about this method is that it can work and that it depends largely on you. You have to and I repeat HAVE TO be ready to stick to it no matter what. You will feel like an absolute a-hole for the first day or two. It’s really hard listening to your baby cry and intentionally abstaining from helping her out. But, that’s the only way to get your baby to learn to self-soothe for this method to work. And that’s what this method is about: self-soothing. Which is the main reason why you need to wait till your baby is about 3 months. At that point, your child is developed enough to be able to get to sleep on her own without the constant need of you.
I decided to try the Ferber method because my daughter would either fall asleep for a short period of time and then immediately wake up screaming for me, or she would sleep 6 hours then not be able to get back to sleep. I was turning into a zombie trying to get her back down, so I tried this out and it worked. It took me exactly 3 days for her to get the picture and begin sleeping by herself with no problems. The time will vary.
First, I would always do the same routine before bed. Rock her to the point where she was just about to fall asleep. Then I laid her in her bed and walked out. She started to cry immediately. So I waited 5 minutes before I walked back in. When I walked in she stopped crying. I comforted her by rubbing her back and saying to her it’s ok. DO NOT PICK UP YOUR BABY. I put her back on her back and walked back out. This took about 30 seconds. Keep it brief. If you walk out and your baby is still crying after doing everything just stated, that’s ok. Just walk out. Then I waited 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, if she was still crying, I walked back in and did the same thing. About 30 seconds of comfort. Don’t pick up the kid. Walk out. Then I waited 15 minutes. Rinse and repeat. After the third time of going in her room where I was prepared to wait 20 minutes, she fell asleep.
She woke up about 6 hours later, as expected. I repeated the exercise. I walked in and comforted her. Gave her a paci and walked out in 30 seconds. Fortunately, she went to sleep pretty quickly for another 2 hours or so. This part might be different for you. This might be where you give her a bottle, and try and put her back down. It really depends on your child and what her sleep routine is at that point in time. I knew my daughter would take another 2 hours of sleep so I waited it out till she fell back asleep.
Each night, over the 3 days, the amount of time for her to fall asleep diminished. The second night she fell asleep after I came into her room about two times. By the third night, she fell asleep within 5 minutes of putting her down. She’s never had a problem since then. You just have to be persistent and consistent with this method. DO NOT give up! Also, make sure you sprinkle the crib with some pacifiers if you have baby that wakes up in the middle of the night looking for a pacifier. That will also help with midnight wakings. Good Luck! And, as always, message me with any questions.