Parental 101: Sleep Training Your Spouse

Lochlan asleep

Lochlan asleep

If you are the stay at home parent, you are more than likely, to be more accepting of the idea of sleep training. The subject tends to be the topic of discussion with other parents because we have two little one’s again. Our two little one’s mastered the full night sleep before 2 months. New parents tend to turn to parents who have achieved the master goal of their baby sleeping through the night. I tell most parents we are special case when it comes to sleeping through the night. All 3 of our kids were sleeping through the night before or by 2 months. The main reasons, all 3 kids were moved to their cribs in their own bedrooms by 4 weeks and they were eating formula by 3 weeks. 

The standard for babies sleeping through the night is the majority (70%) will sleep a solid 8 hours by 9 months. We are a rarity of those number, babies who sleep through under 3 months is less the 5%. The middle number, are those babies who are not showing any sign of sleeping through the night after 9 months, they are still waking in the middle of the night to feed. For some parents, it might be every two hours or maybe even every hour. 

Sleep training, is the common way to get your child to sleep through the night. In a nutshell, sleep training is letting your child cry it out when they wake up. So instead of feeding, you let them cry themselves back to sleep. Sleep training your baby could take just days to achieve but for most parents, it usual lasts a few weeks. One of the most common hurdles during the training, is training yourself and your spouse to not to respond to their long periods of crying. 

Most stay at home parents can master their need to respond but it’s usually the working parent who struggles with the process. They break easily because for some the crying is to much to bare and for others it’s the fear that there is something really wrong with the child. Most home caregivers can identify the difference from a cry because they want you up and distressed cry. I typically tell parents the one who can stand will find themselves sleep training not only the child but the other parent as well. Sadly Clem was more difficult to sleep train than all three kids. You would think after the first child, it would be easy. Sadly that is not the case. Even I had to work on my ability to not respond in the early days.

Don't be shocked you begin to find a friction between you and your co-parent. Most couples go through a bump in the road during sleep training. Mainly because the parent who is NOT with the child often and is not apt to deal with sleep training, begins to feel as though they are being controlled by their spouse. Thanks in part to the countless nights of waking up to crying and your spouse barking at you to go back to sleep. Sometime even physically preventing you from getting out of bed. My advice to all parents, patience and identify your child's patterns. So if that one parent wants to wake up and deal with the child, then let them go it alone. Of coarse that leads to animosity that you aren't helping out. Honestly it is a no win situation, unless you face facts that you need to stay of the baby cry pipe. They are tricky little angels, they work every angles and it’s easy to fall victim to their games. Yes, even babies can sleep train you! But that's a whole separate topic.