Thursday, February 28, 2008

Thank you, Dr. Ferber

As I mentioned in this post, ever since Jonathan was tiny we've rocked him to sleep. Which, while nice for all of us (Daddy too), it wasn't the best idea. Each night, you'd have to get him to sleep & try laying him down; hoping against hope that he didn't wake up. If he did, really the only option was to start over. We'd been talking for awhile about trying to find a method that would work for us to get him to fall asleep on his own. I picked up a few books, one of which being Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems by Dr. Richard Ferber, M.D. I'd heard of this method before, but always thought it involved just leaving your child in his/her room to cry until he fell asleep. I didn't really want to do that. After talking with my friend, Lisa, who gave me some more information, I decided to read the book.

Basically it breaks it down into different techniques, based on your child's needs. Jonathan's "problem" is/was "sleep associations"; he needed us to rock him to sleep. In Jonathan's case, the method was to set up a bedtime routine so that it would be come a soothing time & one to look forward to. Then, you put them in bed & leave. Yes, he cried, but I went back into his room in increasing intervals. First night... 3 min, then 5, then 10, etc. and it increased a little each night. The first 3 nights I only had to go in once to comfort him and then he fell asleep on his own. Tonight..... he didn't cry AT ALL! I'm so thankful about this! I'm hoping that it will continue from here on out. Once he's going to bed easily on his own for a while, then we'll work on moving his bedtime down to a reasonable hour. Right now it's around 11pm, which is way too late.

Here is the bedtime routine that we're doing right now:

*Change diaper
*Put on Johnson's Bedtime Lotion and sing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star
*Put on pajamas
*Read "Pajama Time" by Sandra Boynton
*Read "Goodnight Moon" by Margaret Wise Brown
*Turn out light
*Go to bed

It's working for us right now, though I may add to it in the future. Do you have a bedtime routine for your kid(s)? What do y'all do?

All this talk about bedtime is making me sleepy....


LilCzarina said...

Ferberize vs. Fockerize :)

Rebecca said...

Yay! I know you've been wanting to do this for a long time - I'm glad to hear it's working!

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