If you go to bed every night praying, pleading that: tonight will be it, TONIGHT will be the night; by some magic your baby is going to sleep through the night; that by some miracle you’re in for a full night of uninterrupted sleep… If this is your DREAM every single night, you are not alone <3.
The majority of parents with babies are feeling the same way, desperately hoping that their baby will begin sleeping through the night. Yet despite following so much of the advice from the “sleep experts” their baby still wakes up several times.
They feel defeated, exhausted and more than anything, they feel like they are failures at getting their baby to sleep, and that the recurrent wake ups are somehow THEIR fault.
This article is for all of those parents <3
But my friends baby slept through the night at 6 weeks!
It can feel so discouraging when you see your Facebook friend sharing that her baby started sleeping through the night at 6 weeks, that it was easy and that she has been getting 10 hours of uninterrupted sleep pretty much forever.
But what you don’t see are the 20 other parents with young children who also have babies who didn’t sleep through the night at 6 weeks, or even those who may have 2-year-olds who still wake up during the night sometimes (this is completely normal btw).
It is exhausting trying to figure out why YOUR baby won’t sleep, trying to put together the perfect nighttime schedule only to wake up a couple hours after putting them down, feeling disappointed and frustrated that your attempts at improving sleep have not been “successful”.
It feels AWFUL believing that your baby, and yourself, are not getting the restful sleep that you want because somehow you are messing up. But the reality is an entirely different picture.
Reasons why parents feel like they are failing at their baby’s sleep:
- You are Failing if you breastfeed or bottle feed your baby to sleep
- You are Failing if you let your baby fall asleep with a pacifier or some other “sleep aid”
- You are Failing if your baby wakes up every 2-3 hours
- You are Failing if your baby can’t “self-soothe” to get to sleep
- You are Failing if you bring your baby into your bed because you’re exhausted
- You are Failing if your baby falls asleep in the car/stroller/baby carrier because babies “don’t get quality sleep if they are moving”
Guess what, all of these reasons are total bullsh*t.
Reasons why you DONT NEED to feel like you are failing
Did you know that evolutionary wise it is PERFECTLY HEALTHY for babies to wake up during the night? Waking up during the night actually keeps them safe. (That is not to say there aren’t ways to help everyone get more sleep)
Did you know that babies actually DO NOT have the brain development to “self-soothe”? Legitimately the part of the brain that is in charge of this development is not even there until they get older.
Did you know that 70% of parents report bringing their babies into bed with them at some point in the night? SEVENTY PERCENT is almost 3/4 of all parents.
Did you know that baby sleeping in motion is just as restorative as if they are not moving?
Yupp, all of these facts are true, and backed by developmental science.
I’m sorry you’ve been feeling this way
I want to be the first to say that I am so sorry you have been walking around feeling like you are failing at this. I promise you are not. This whole raising tiny humans thing is really freaking hard, and we are all just doing the best we possibly can.
When it comes to infant sleep every parent is different, every baby is different and every transition, stage and development is different which is why INFANT SLEEP IS TOTALLY UNIQUE.
If you are feeding your baby, taking care of their needs and doing the best that you can with what you have, then YOU ARE NOT FAILING, not even a little bit. You are the expert on your own child and you know more than you give yourself credit.
But If you find you are feeling exhausted, discouraged or overwhelmed, we totally feel you, and that is why we are here to help <3
How has your experience with infant sleep been? Is this you, or does your little one sleep in longer intervals? Comment below or over on our Facebook or Instagram page, we always love to hear from you!