One Year and Beyond: Bedtime Battles

I really hope no one hates me after they read this post. I know sleep training is sort of a touchy subject.

Before Harper was born, we had the book Healthy Sleeping Habits, Happy Child recommended to us. Casey and I both read it prior to giving birth, thankfully because it was long and boring and took me forever. We used the techniques described in the book, when Harper was old enough obviously, and haven't had too much trouble getting her to nap.

In the beginning, I would lay next to her on our bed, trying to get her to nap in the day time. I did it on a schedule, every 1-2 hours, or when she started showing early signs of tiredness. For her, that meant that she was starting to do the slow blink or would get really quiet and less attentive.

At 4 or 5 weeks, she began to sleep longer stretches through the night. Usually 5 hours, sometimes more. She slept in our room, in a small pack and play with a bassinette part to it.

To be extremely honest, the sleep was the part about formula feeding that I loved. Even though when people asked me about it, and I said I was formula feeding, some would act like my best friend had died. To me, she was getting fed, and we were all happy. Not because formula keeps them full longer, because I'm not sure that's really true. It's because Casey would take the 9PM-1AM 'shift' so that I could rest. He was, and still is extremely helpful and active in Harper's care. Usually we would put her to bed around 9ish, and if she woke before 1AM, Casey would get up, feed and change her, and then get her back to sleep as best he could. If she woke after 1AM, I would get up with her. After that wake up time, she would sleep until 5ish, and then again until 9. And even though I wouldn't necessarily sleep during the 9-1AM shift, at least I got to rest.

So as you can see, Harper's sleeping has been pretty scheduled since she was really young. Obviously when she was a newborn, she just slept whenever and wherever she wanted.

One of the biggest things the book talked about was to put them to bed drowsy but awake, to train them to fall asleep in their bed on their own. It said we could try it early, but that it likely wouldn't work until almost 3 months of age.

We took the books advice though, and began to test her to see if she was ready after like 6-8 weeks. This part was really difficult. Many times, she would become more awake and cry, so we'd have to start all over again. But, eventually after a few weeks, she began to dose off on her own, in her bed.

I don't think we let her cry it out until 3-4 months old. The thing was, she always had a regular cry, and then an I need you cry. If she started into the I need you cry, I'd go right in. This made it pretty simple to teach her to put herself to sleep. She didn't really ever do much crying. I think one time she cried over 20 mins, but as I said, it was just the normal cry. Never the I need you cry.

We moved her from our room to her crib somewhere around 4 months old. I was kind of nervous about it, but we had a monitor in there, and the transition went really smoothly. She began sleeping for 11 hours or so just after that, and we really couldn't have been happier with how everything went.

Naps were always much more difficult for us. Even though we had a routine and schedule (mostly) she would sometimes just not want to nap. I suppose that everyone has those days though.

So, want to know my biggest tips for getting through sleeping battles?

-Do what's best for you and your child. What works for me, may not work for you at all. Test out new ideas if something isn't working for you.

-Read up on it. There are many sleep training solutions out there. There are articles, videos, tutorials, and even facebook groups devoted to helping you help your little one sleep. Utilize the resources! Once you find one you like, try it out, but remember, if it doesn't work, try something new.

-Ask for help. Family and friends are there to help you, sometimes you just need to reach out.

-Make sure your child is sleeping safely!!

If you've got any questions for me about sleep training, I'll try to answer as best I can! Comment or email me if you like!

Disclaimer: No negative comments about crying it out please. It works for us and our child. She is very loved and never neglected. No mommy judging please!

Linking up this post for One Year and Beyond, Toddler Topics!


  1. Loved this! Sleep training is so hard. We let our little girl cry it out when we first crib trained her at four months, 8 months to FINALLY sleep all the way through the night and again at 16 months to learn to put herself to sleep instead of being rocked. At no point was she ever hysterical or to the point that I was worried. I feel like it worked perfectly for our family!

    1. I'm glad you found something that worked for your family! :)


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