Did I just say that Dad could be the start to your journey of sleep training success?
YES I sure did… While that sinks in, let me start by saying that in most cases, mom is the parent responsible for solving the majority – if not all – of the family’s nighttime disruptions. More often than not, parents are struggling with their baby’s sleep issues because on an external “prop” that baby has become dependant on in order to fall asleep at bedtime, naptime and any time after waking in the night.
Typically the “prop” which leads to the most issues in your baby not being able to fall asleep independently is breastfeeding. It certainly isn’t the only prop, and usually there are a combination at play – such as rocking, pacifiers, or shushing, BUT breastfeeding is usually top of the list.
Waking up several times in the night or every few hours is absolutely draining on any mom’s energy levels and the fatigue that follows can be soul destroying. The resentment and jealousy that builds when your husband can just roll over and go back to sleep can cause some issues in your marriage too, and that is the last thing anyone wants, especially when you’re feeling so fragile and vulnerable. I was there myself, so believe me when I say that I know how that feels.
It’s not that dad’s don’t want to help, they just don’t have the magic boobs that mom’s use to solve many a problem. Let’s spare a thought for dad’s here, because its hard for them when they can’t seem to fix things. We all know how much dad’s like fixing things and solving problems – so this can be a challenging time for them too.
Possibly the best kept secret about sleep training is that when dad takes the lead…… babies respond fairly quickly and really well.
Possibly the best kept secret about sleep training is that when dad takes the lead, particularly for the first few nights, babies respond fairly quickly and really well. That then lays the foundation for continued sleep training success. Assuming, of course that mom also relinquishes her control. The reason is that babies know that dad doesn’t have the milk supply and they tend to settle sooner which leads to the feeding-to-sleep association falling away a lot faster than if only mom was implementing from the start. (That’s not to say that it won’t work if dad isn’t the one taking charge for a few nights, its just a little easier). Choosing the path of least resistance is a good thing in this case, and dad get’s to be a part of the solution so everyone wins!
Now, mom’s – a friendly bit of advice: if you never leave dad to figure it out and do it in his own way, he’s not going to want to help you! Let him rise to the occasion and remember that it is his kid too. Dad’s need space and time to establish their own bond with your children and ways of working things out together without your interference. (I have to remind myself of this ALL the time).
So, if you’re serious about taking control of your family’s sleep – letting dad lead the way could be the best decision you’ll ever make. Just think…your evenings with warm meals, a nice catch up with hubby and maybe even an episode (or two) of your favourite Netflix show could be a few days away!
For more information on how I can help you solve your child’s sleep issues, book a FREE 15 minute Discovery Call today.