Today I’ve been a bit fed up. A bit fed up of seeing people being nasty to one particularly lovely Mummy on twitter about how she chooses to look after her children, amongst other things. This isn’t a post about how in our, mostly supportive, online community we should all just get on and neither it is a post about the pros and cons of various parenting methods. It’s a post about me (duh?!).
Well actually it’s about Wilbur. When I read these debates about attachment parenting, cry it out, controlled patting or whatever I begin to get a bit sweaty. Because here’s the thing: I agree – leaving a baby screaming is not a good idea. Studies have shown (according to Oliver James) that children who are left to cry as part of sleep training have higher levels of stress hormones or something and basically they are doomed. So what about Wilbur? I don’t leave him to scream – but scream he does. In my arms, in his cot, in the car … Anywhere and everywhere he screams when he’s tired. Sometimes at full pelt, very loudly, for what feels like an eternity. Trust me when I say we have tried everything to stop him crying. Even going against all my instincts and giving up and taking him downstairs to watch Peppa has no effect. Changing his bed time, where he sleeps, his routine, how we comfort him … We have tried it. Nothing makes any difference. Last night for the first night in ages he went to sleep without screaming and then he woke up 30 minutes later and screamed for a good 45 minutes. He’s 14 months old. Is it normal? Is it behavioural? Is it driving me ever so slightly over the edge? (Dunno, dunno, defo).
So, is he doomed? Is all this screaming-of-non-parental-choice causing him stress levels that are causing him untold damage??
Please let me know what you think, but be kind … I’m at my wits end as the fear of the screaming bedtime lurks in the doorway to his little room.