When you hear the term "sleep training", do you immediately picture a baby being left alone to 'cry it out'? If so, you are not alone. This is a common misconception.
While I have coached parents through the well known "cry it out" method to help their baby learn to put himself to sleep, it is not the only method.
It's true that I don't have a magic wand to wave over your baby to make him magically sleep well. Depending on the reason for poor sleep, it often takes a sleep training method of some kind to help get to restful nights. However, sleep coaching is more than just telling you a "method" to use. When I work with families, I recommend a specific sleep schedule based on circadian rhythms and I learn about your baby and his habits to determine the reason he is not sleeping well. Once these issues have been addressed, the amount of crying significantly decreases.
I am honest with all families. I disclose from our first conversation that sleep training will involve some level of crying because this is how babies communicate. Since sleep training involves changing a child's routines around sleep, they will cry to protest the change. I do my best though to work with you to minimize the amount of crying by adjusting schedules, putting in place healthy sleep routines, and offering you options so you are are able to be present with your baby while he learns how to put himself to sleep.
Families are able to weigh the pros and cons of each method based on their level of involvement, and with my professional experience and assistance, pick the method that will work best for their baby and them.
"As a parent that takes more of an attachment parenting approach, I was always very skeptical about even considering any sort of sleep training or taking advice of that sort. I always associated sleep training with "cry it out." When my son was 2.5 years old and bedtime was becoming a real issue for our family, I decided to reach out to Jennifer at Golden Slumbers. Every preconceived notion I had about sleep consultants was wiped away within minutes of speaking with her. Jennifer took my parenting style and wishes as top priority when developing a recommendation for my family. She is professional, compassionate and patient which makes all the difference in the world to an overtired, frustrated mama bear like myself. Thank you Golden Slumbers for changing my perspective and giving my family the tools to achieve sweet dreams."
With consistency, every method can result in successful sleep training. Therefore, I rarely feel the need to push parents beyond their comfort level. So while most people feel sleep training is synonymous with cry it out; ironically, it is the least common method I use.