The Ultimate Cry It Out Bootcamp

Any links to Amazon are affiliate links.


The ultimate guide to how to do cry it out sleep training. Follow this for a step-by-step guide on using cry it out to get baby sleeping well.

Baby crying

While this blog has several posts with CIO (Cry It Out) information on it, none is more popular than this one. I wrote this when Kaitlyn was around 4 months old. So here it is revised and updated! This is a parent bootcamp to get the parent to know what to do and not do during CIO.


CIO Bootcamp was derived when I had written a couple of posts to a BW Yahoo group on CIO (Cry It Out).


The definition of CIO ranges from person to person. For some, it means putting baby in bed and walking away never to return until A)baby has slept and/or B)naptime is over. That isn’t my definition. For clarificaiton purposes, let me talk about what my definition of CIO is.

For me, CIO is a method used to help your baby learn to fall asleep. I don’t think it is a process you can use a formula with. You can’t use langauge like “never” or “always.” There will often be times when you need to break rules. You are using this process to help your child learn to sleep on their own, and the exact steps you take will vary from child to child.


Your goal with CIO is for your child to learn to sleep on her own.

It is SO HARD to listen to your baby cry. It put me in tears so many times with my first and the second time around was easier because I knew the benefits, but I still had my days of tears. And you know what? It really wasn’t easy for me the third time, either. My third child only had a couple of naps where she cried herself to sleep, but it still was very hard for me.

Don’t confuse hard with wrong. There are a lot of things in life we have to do that are hard that bring about great benefits. We have to work out to be in shape. If we want to get in shape, it will take hard work. To make a nice meal takes work. To have a clean house takes work. To be pregnant and labor to deliver a child is hard and takes work. The best things in life are hard to come by!

You will think back to this time and remember how hard it was but realize how beneficial it was! You will also think the process wasn’t that long after all and the benefits were worth the heartache. That is easier said on the happy side of things than at the beginning of the process, I know. But it doesn’t make it less true.


Things are easier to deal with if you have a better idea of what to expect.

  • It is hard. Listening to your baby cry is hard. Know that the difficulties you will experience are normal–especially if you start after you have soothed them for some time. Babywise says some crying is normal, but I don’t think they really give an honest picture of what to expect. It is harder than they make it seem.
  • It will improve. Know that if you stick with it, it will get better over time.
  • It can be a roller coaster. You will have difficult days interspersed with the good days for some time. Kaitlyn would have days with no crying, then a day where she cried at least thirty minutes for every nap when I did nothing differently. But as time went on, the hard days got fewer and farther between and eventually were a thing of the past.
  • It can be a roller coaster. I know I said it. I need to say it again. Expect things to get better, then to get bad again, then better, then bad. You will have dream days. Then you will have days that make you wonder what on earth you are doing and will reduce you to tears. But stick through it. This pattern is true of having a baby CIO at any age, from my observations.

Great Sleep Training Books

The Contented Little Baby
Mom’s On Call
Solve Your Child’s Sleep Problems
The Wonder Weeks
The Baby Whisperer Solves All Your Problems
Secrets of the Baby Whisperer
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child
Chronicles of a Babywise Mom Book of Logs
The Babywise Mom Nap Guide
On Becoming Babywise
The Contented Little Baby
Mom’s On Call
Solve Your Child’s Sleep Problems
The Wonder Weeks
The Baby Whisperer Solves All Your Problems
Secrets of the Baby Whisperer
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child
Chronicles of a Babywise Mom Book of Logs
The Babywise Mom Nap Guide
On Becoming Babywise


Like I said, you will sometimes need to break rules, but here are some basic ones to follow.

  • Work Toward Your Goal. If you can think through things as to how they apply to your goal, you will make this a lot easier on yourself. You won’t have to second guess yourself and wonder if it is okay to do XYZ. Always keep your goal in mind: You want to teach your baby to sleep on her own. You don’t want to just make your baby cry.
  • Be Consistent. If you are going to do CIO, I think you need to do CIO for every nap and for bedtime. With my first child, I first tried just at night, but that ended up making no sense. Why rock him sometimes and expect him to fall asleep on his own others? I think in the CIO case, it is best to do it all at once rather than trying to ease into it. All or nothing! I don’t think you should do CIO at all if you aren’t going to stick to it. If a baby knows they will be “rescued” at some point, they will cry until they are. Go big or go home, as the saying goes. If you know you can’t see it through, wait until you can.Of course, there will be times you will break this rule. Maybe you are at a friend’s house. Maybe your baby is sick or teething. Maybe he is overstimulated because you kept him up too long. These are examples of times you will rock your baby to sleep, put him in a swing, or do something else to help him fall asleep.
  • Be Ready. This rule applies to both you and the baby. Mom needs to be ready for this, but so does baby. If baby has reflux or some other medical condition then wait until the pain is under control and not a factor. Don’t start if baby is sick or teething. See What Are The Benefits of Sleep Training?
  • Be Home. Don’t start CIO while you are traveling or when you will be in and out for several weeks. You need to dedicate at least two weeks to staying home and getting this worked out.
  • Be respectful. If you know you are putting baby down too late, don’t do it. The baby will just cry and never go to sleep and you will eventually get baby. That does not work toward meeting your goal. I wouldn’t put Kaitlyn down if I knew I had missed her window–I would put her in the swing. And at 7 months, if she had missed a nap and needed to sleep, I would often put her in the swing just because I think the more tired she was the harder it would be for her to fall asleep without difficulty. With McKenna, I never had to do things like that. She was skilled enough at falling asleep on her own she could always just go down without a fuss.
  • Check…or Don’t. When doing CIO, I would check on Kaitlyn at some point if she hadn’t gone to sleep. Figure out your child’s reaction to your interference. Brayden wouldn’t ever go to sleep if I made my presence known after I put him down. And, if I ever got him out of bed after he had been crying, naps would be AWFUL for a long time afterward. He seemed to hate to sleep (he still does!). He would even fuss to go to sleep in a swing. That is when you know you have a hates-to-sleep-er.Kaitlyn, on the other hand, did well with my presence if she had been crying for a while. When she was younger, I would go in after 20 minutes. At 11 weeks I waited 30. I didn’t pick her up because that made it worse for her. I would pat her and tell her to go to sleep. Then she usually got really mad when I left but was asleep within 10 minutes.Now, this did not work for my son. If I ever checked on him, he would not go to sleep at all. For him it was better to be left alone. Once I left the room, I needed to leave him be. So, this is something else that you need to learn about your child.I have no idea what would have been best for McKenna becuase she never really did CIO.
  • Set a Limit. Set a limit you can all deal with. If Kaitlyn had not gone to sleep after an hour, I moved her to the swing so she could get some sleep before the next feeding. This way we avoided getting overly sleepy and getting way ahead of schedule. For her, if she hadn’t fallen asleep at that point, she just wouldn’t.That worked for her, but for my son, that was asking for trouble. If I ever did that, he would cry double time for his next nap (and often for every nap for a couple of days) because he knew if he cried long enough he would get out of it. I don’t know if it was his personality or if it was because I started him at 9 weeks so he knew there were other options. I started my daughter CIO at one week, so to her this is just the way it was.
  • Have a Back-Up Plan: Have a plan for if your child is overstimulated or just won’t fall asleep. When I wrote this post originally, I said I thought that a swing is a better alternative to you rocking or doing something to help–then the baby is still “alone” and not relying on you and knowing you are doing it for them.Then McKenna came along and hated the swing with a passion I have never seen. We literally just packed it up before she was 3 months old because she even hated it just to sit in. If she was woken early (usually by a noisy sibling), I would go rock her back to sleep and we didn’t have any long-term sleep problems.
  • Keep Baby Awake. It is good to not let baby fall asleep (as best you can) while eating. If they do, they aren’t quite tired enough to fall asleep when it comes time for nap.
  • Adjust For Context. Some moms are nervous to attend to baby later down the road after sleep training is completed. Say baby has been falling asleep without a peep for three months, then one day cries before going down for her nap. This would be uncharacteristic for her. This is a moment when you want to go in and attend to her needs. You want to be sure there is nothing wrong. If you have checked her over and are sure there is nothing wrong, you can have her CIO if needed.I remember when Brayden was one year old. He woke in the middle of the night crying. This was really uncharacteristic of him. I had the thought that maybe I shouldn’t go in, but I knew this was different and figured something had to be wrong. We were in the middle of moving and were in a different house than he was used to, but I didn’t assume that was the problem. I went in to find that he had diarrhea –the worst kind–the acid kind that burns the minute it touches the skin. I was very glad I had checked on him


  • Discover Optimal Waketime. Get to know the timing of your child’s naps. The younger the baby, the more crucial it is to get them down at the right moment. As they get older, down-to-the-minute isn’t as important, but timing was still important for Brayden at two years old. He wouldn’t cry if I put him down late, but he would play in his bed for X amount of time rather than going right to sleep. We’ve all experience the second wind or being too tired to fall asleep. So get to know your child’s cues.This is a hard thing and unfortunately can require some trial and error on your part. Kaitlyn would always yawn (at least for the first couple of months of life. Then she went to zero sleep cues. Talk about hard!). Brayden would get fussy. He had an easy sleep cue. McKenna yawns and starts squaking like a bird :).Your child should get tired around the same time–for example Kaitlyn stayed up for about an hour each wake time, so I started watching her at 50 minutes like a hawk so I didn’t miss the sign.You also don’t want to put them down too early. A young baby may only be able to do 45 minutes of waketime—including feeding. Take note of the timing of everything and how baby responds. Unfortunately, there is some trial and error here.

    If you are following cues and your baby still has a hard time falling asleep, you might need to ignore cues. Those cues might be “too late” cues rather than “just right” cues.

  • Swaddle. If your baby will be swaddled, I would do that for a newborn. The problem is that their arms will fling out and scare them awake, so if you can swaddle, it does help. My first wouldn’t ever be swaddled, but my second would. Around 3 or 4 weeks she protested the full swaddle, so we moved to one arm out. McKenna was swaddled until about 4 months old. Now, as a mom with more experience, if I were to have another “Brayden” who seemingly hated to be swaddled, I would do it anyway! I have talked to other moms of 3 or more who say the exact same thing, “My first wouldn’t be swaddled, but knowing what I know now, I would make him/her!” There will definitely be exceptions. There will be some who absolutely will sleep better unswaddled. But I think those are in the vast minority. Give swaddling a fair shot.
  • Have a Routine. I like to sing the same lullaby every time once they are in bed. This lets them know it is bedtime, plus it is something you can take with you everywhere you go. That is nice when you aren’t at your home, and also nice once you move them into a bed and out of the crib–it will come quicker than you think. You could also rock your child so they are more drowsy to start, but don’t rock beyond the point of the sign of sleepiness. Rocking can be a good thing to do with younger babies, even if it is just for your peace of mind; then you know you did something to help. Tracy Hogg, The Baby Whisperer, says rocking is never a good idea before sleep and that it overstimulates, so keep that in mind.
  • See the Connection. Overall, everything is connected. The better rested they are, the more awake they will be for eating, and the more they eat, the better they will sleep, and the more they are awake, the more tired they will be for sleeping.
  • Get a Video Monitor. You will love it! It takes a lot of the guess work out of things. You can see your baby so you know if she is unswaddled or stuck in a corner or flipped on her tummy. During McKenna’s two naps of crying, I could watch her. She sounded furious, but didn’t look that mad. Watching her actually made it easier on me. I use a Summer video monitor.

How to do Cry It Out with your baby


If your baby is crying because of colic or witching hour, this is not the time to do CIO. If you need a break for sanity and need to put baby down for a few minutes, that is fine, but don’t try to sleep train a baby who is crying for one of these reasons.

McKenna experience witching hour as a baby. She was fine all day, but would cry for her last nap. We couldn’t do the swing because she hated it (that would have been my first choice). We tried to rock her. Otherwise, she just stayed up. She would stay happy with a pacifier in her mouth. We used this time to get out of the house as a family since she wasn’t sleeping anyway.


Here is a basic synopsis of each of my children’s CIO experiences. Keep in mind that this is a synopsis of me looking back. Things always sound better looking back than they do in the heat of the moment!


  • We started CIO at about 9 weeks of age.
  • We did it in the summer when things were crazy. We spent about a month meeting family expectations and being everywhere. This was hard on Brayden because we were so inconsistent. We eventually decided we needed to be fair to him and dedicated to stay home and be consistent for one month.
  • At first, he cried a lot. It was definitely a roller coaster experience in the beginning.
  • Within days of starting, he went from waking twice a night to just once.
  • After two weeks, even despite the inconsistencies, he had really improved.
  • Once we started being really consistent, he went to just basic fussing for a few minutes before some naps.
  • 4 days before his 4 month birthday, he stopped fussing at all before naps and never looked back.


  • For the first 5 days of her life, she just slept basically around the clock, but when she was a week old, I started working to keep her awake after eating and putting her to bed awake.
  • At first, I was going to rock her to sleep, but I felt like I should put her in her bed. I decided it was unfair to train her to fall asleep one way only to switch it up on her in a few weeks.
  • The very first nap we did “CIO,” she didn’t cry at all.
  • The next nap, she cried between 5-10 minutes. Then she went days without crying at all. Then she started having some long crying sessions. Then she would go back to not crying at all. Then she started crying 20 minutes. Then down to 5 minutes.
  • She went to minimal fussing before naps, but by 8 weeks she was not crying/fussing at all before naps.


  • I did the 4 S’s recommended by the Baby Whisperer with McKenna. I only ever had to do the first 3 S’s.
  • I started putting McKenna to bed awake at three days old.
  • McKenna never cried before a nap until she was 3 months old (except for witching hour–at that time, I didn’t have her “CIO”). On this day, she cried for about 5-10 minutes before a couple of naps, then she was done.


Good luck. Just know it gets better. I believe it is best for the baby, but that is obvious because I do it. Do what you think is best for your baby because you are his mom and no one will know better than you do. If you ever need support through it, let me know. I know it is so hard. I also know it is so worth it.

Where are we today? I have a 4.5 year old who, despite his disdain for sleep (and I can’t blame him, I don’t really like it much either), sleeps 11 hours at night and spends one hour each day resting in his bed. I have a 2.5 year old who sleeps 11.5 hours at night and 3.5 hours for a nap. I have an 8 month old who sleeps 12 hours at night and takes two 2.5 hour naps and one 1 hour nap each day.

All three are very smart. All three are very happy. All three are very loving. My older two show great compassion. I constantly get comments on how well behaved my children are and how happy and alert my baby is.

Both Brayden and Kaitlyn got to the point of no crying for naps or bedtime rather quickly. Brayden at 4 months and Kaitlyn at around 8 weeks. She would cry on occasion after that age, but rarely and it usually meant something was wrong. If it was a cry to settle down into a nap, it wasn’t the screaming cry that breaks your heart but more of an off and on and half-hearted cry.

If you are in the middle of CIO and need some encouragement, see the post When Does it Get Better? 

Sleep Training Tips and Info

These posts will help you sleep train your baby with confidence. Learn how to sleep train in the method that best suits you and your baby.


How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it 1-5!

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 1

As you found this post useful...

Follow us on social media!

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!


Valerie, also known as The Babywise Mom, is the mother to four children. She has been blogging on Babywise and general parenting since 2007. She has a degree in technical writing and loves using those skills to help parents be the best parents they can be! Read her book, The Babywise Mom Nap Guide, to get help on sleep from birth through the preschool years. You can also find her writing at, Today Parenting, and Her View From Home. Read more about Valerie and her family on the About page. Follow her on FacebookPinterest, and Instagram for more tips and helps.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Facebook


  1. Becca
    December 29, 2009 / 2:52 AM

    Hi! I have a 4 week old and I have questions. We have been doing BW since D1 and have kept a pretty strict routine. She was Jaundiced and her levels begin to drop after 2 weeks of age (during this time, I was breast feeding her every 3 hr around the clock). Now, she is still feeding every 3 hrs during the day but am having problems keeping her awake for an entire feeding. Feeding usually takes an hour but only eating an average of 12-18 min per side. As soon as I am done feeding, she is sound asleep. We do EVERYTHING we can to just keep her awake to eat and some after feeding but there seems to be no true wake time. She is not waking early out of naps during the day but I can't get her to sleep longer than 2-3 hrs at night at a time. I try to let her cry for a while (if she wakes up crying) and it seems that she is always hungry. She has an average of 10 wet diapers/6 or more stools daily in a 24 hr period. This makes me think she is getting enough to eat and is gaining weight. She wants to be awake at her night time feedings. I think this means she has her days and nights mixed up so how do I fix it?

  2. Sarita
    December 29, 2009 / 3:24 PM

    I'd like to gently point out that this post seems to validate what I have found out in my experience, that Babywise is good for scheduling suggestions, troubleshooting feeding, and evaluating attachment parenting, but Baby Whisperer & HSH are much better for sleep training than Babywise. Believe me, I know my baby has been a little sinner from the beginning, but young babies are not conniving, manipulative little creatures who won't learn that they can't manipulate you unless you let them scream for hours with no attention. On that sleep disruption post, I couldn't believe one of the commenters talked about letting her son CIO for two hours. And letting a 1-week-old cry for an hour to train to self-soothe? Wow. Babies do not cry for two hours because they're conniving and manipulative. They cry for two hours because they need something. I'll add my experience to your experience with McKenna to encourage people to check out your very good posts on Baby Whisperer and the S's before they decide to let a baby who is so dependent on Mom & Dad for so many things scream for hours without being attended to.

  3. Krista
    December 30, 2009 / 6:59 PM

    I have a 7 month old. I have somewhat done babywise, but have run into some roadblocks. She had colic and reflux for the first 5 months (on medication) and then was sick, then the holidays were here with crazy schedules, and now we are trying to get back on track. She has been a really good sleeper, but only if she is swaddled. We have tried to get her to go to sleep without swaddling her and she won't fall asleep on her own that way. Everyone says to keep swaddling her and she will grow out of it, but she's 7 months old! Any suggestions? Is there a problem with continuing to swaddle her?Thanks!

  4. Lauren
    January 4, 2010 / 6:42 PM

    I'm very interested in how MUCH your children sleep — isn't it unusual? I had read that 6-9 month olds sleep 14-15 hrs out of 24, but your baby is sleeping 18 hours. Two year olds usually sleep about 13 hours out of 24, but your 2.5 year old is sleeping 15. I'm curious about your thoughts on this.Lauren

  5. Plowmanators
    January 12, 2010 / 6:24 PM

    Becca, if she is taking 1 hour to complete the feeding, I think that answers your question as to why she won't stay awake. Most 4 week olds can only stay awake for 45 minutes at a time. I would work to spend less time at a feeding. She shouldn't need to take that long to eat. Brayden took that long. I went to a lactation consultant and sh tried to help me to get him to go faster, but her only idea really was to get a pacifier. Looking back, I think he was just napping while 'eating'. Try to keep her awake for her feedings. Then stop feeding and do actual wake time. The way to fix day/night confusion is to have playtime during the day.See the post "adding waketime to yoru newborn's day" for more help on how to go about that. She is still young 🙂

  6. Plowmanators
    January 12, 2010 / 6:27 PM

    Sarita, I would agree that BW doesn't have info on sleep training–but that swings both ways. It doesn't have info. It does not say to let your baby scream for hours unattended. It just doesn't. So I think it is unfair to accuse it of doing so. See my post "sleep training according to babywise." The most it ever says is basically that your baby might need to cry for up to 20 minutes while falling asleep.

  7. Plowmanators
    January 12, 2010 / 6:29 PM

    Krista, I know a few moms who swaddle up until one year old. I think if the swaddle isn't interfereing with life at all, there is no harm in letting her sleep swaddled. So long as she is safe (some babies will roll over swaddled). Also, you would want to make sure she got plenty of time to practice moving around during playtime.When you do drop the swaddle, I would try it with one arm out at a time.

  8. Plowmanators
    January 12, 2010 / 6:35 PM

    Lauren, are you wondering if I think it is a problem? No, I don't. Not at all–if so, I would try to fight them on their sleep.What you are reading are averages of babies/children in general. Averages mean there are those that are below and above the numbers.I would have to say that for most 6-9 month olds, 14 hours will not cut it–espeically closer to the 6 month end. I would be interested to know what their disposition is like when sleeping that much.See my recent post on the importance of sleep. I don't force my girls to sleep; they sleep what is needed. I put Kaitlyn down for a nap and she sleeps until she wakes up, then I get her up (unless she doesn't wake up, then I get her up at her usual time). They are bright and happy and in a good mood while awake. As Weissbluth says, when they have adequate sleep, they are able to gain the most from the time they are awake.My son needs less sleep and always has. I am the same way. I need less sleep to function at my highest. My little sister needs at least three more hours at night than I do to function at her highest. People are different. It is best to go with their individual needs and not worry so much about averages.

  9. Chelsea McCown
    January 16, 2010 / 8:15 PM

    I just wanted to say thank you for this post/website!! I have a 10 day old little boy and I am attempting to do babywise. I have very few friends who have done it and they are very far away. Plus I have been getting a lot of grief from the grandparents about trying to hard to get the baby on a schedule. But I believe babywise can work for me and my son- it is really great to get some support and questions answered! My husband and I have have been back and forth on the paci versus CIO, and this article showed me I can start letting him CIO now, and only use the paci on rare occasions! (Like when it's feeding time, but I am still stuck in traffic trying to get home, etc.)Once again- THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!Chelsea

  10. Plowmanators
    January 30, 2010 / 10:25 PM

    Chelsea, you are most welcome! Thanks for the thanks!

  11. dwcanada
    February 24, 2010 / 2:57 AM

    Hi Valerie – I have learned so much from your blog – what an incredible ministry you have! You do such a wonderful job of sharing your thought process in so many situations – I think this is what I have learned most from. Thank you again. My question is about having a "Backup Plan". What if there doesn't seem to be one? I haven't yet found anything that will send my two month old daughter to sleep if she wakes early or doesn't fall asleep for naps – she has incredible "staying power" – there are times she's been up for 4 hrs and simply did not fall asleep. Did you somehow teach your children to fall asleep in the swing or some other place? I also have a very active two year old boy, so I cannot spend a lot of time helping her fall asleep myself. Thanks again for all you do!

  12. Plowmanators
    March 10, 2010 / 11:01 PM

    That is the hardest situation.Brayden wouldn't really fall asleep well in the swing. McKenna absolutely would not. It made her more mad.With Brayden, the only thing that really worked was time, but he was my first and I had little idea of what I was doing, so I don't know what would be different if I had him today.With McKenna, sometimes rocking worked. If they won't fall asleep any other way, I think you just have to wait until they learn to do it on their own. Just hang in there! Good luck!

  13. Lauren
    April 9, 2010 / 2:56 PM

    hey there! i love your blog. it really gives me i am doing the right thing for me and my family. let me start off by saying that my baby is 11 weeks and we just started cio. a littl late but i din't have time to commit to it before. i have been able to get him down for naps and bedtime with little or no crying for the past week, but at nap time he still wakes up at the 45 minute mark. he's been doing this since he was about 4 weeks. i've tried everything and even have been doing the pick up/ put down listed in the baby whisperer after which he will go down for another 45 or so. after doing this though i have seen no improvement in his ability to transition on his own during the day. he does fine at night. my quwstion is should i start having him cio for transitions or continue the pu/pd even though i think it may becoming a sleep prop. i also put him down initially with a pacifier b/c he seems to have this everwhelming need to suck these days. i recently found out he's been using me and that's why i'm so sore still. however, i have a no reinsertion policy, could that still be causing problems though? thanks so much for your time in reading this very long comment.

  14. Plowmanators
    April 24, 2010 / 2:16 PM

    Lauren,It is possible that the pacifier could be causing problems, but I think with a no reinsertion policy, it really shouldn't. But it is always possible :)If it were me, I wouldn't start CIO mid-nap yet. Since you just started it, he is just learning. It takes time to get the skill down, and it is much easier for them to fall asleep initially than to transition. I would continue as you are.But there are moms who would say to CIO mid-nap, too. I just think that is a lot to ask when you first start CIO.In the end, do what you are comfortable with and what you think is best for him. There are BW moms who would go both ways.

  15. D & H
    May 6, 2010 / 10:28 PM

    We started CIO with my 13 1/2 week old son yesterday to teach him to fall asleep on his own. Previously, we were rocking him to sleep and he would fall asleep within 10 minutes and then we laid him in his bed and he slept, on average, 1 1/2 hours. I used the extinction method from "Healthy Sleep Habits." Yesterday his crying decreased for each nap, and today he has not cried at all, which is great…except that he is taking 30-60 minutes to fall asleep. He lays in his crib happily kicking his legs (he is swaddled), cooing, and admiring the crib slats and ceiling. I can tell he is tired and not getting enough sleep. His naps are all at least 30 minutes shorter since it is taking him that long to fall asleep. Any ideas on how to get him to fall asleep on his own more quickly so he gets enough rest?

  16. Miss Sabrina
    May 16, 2010 / 4:04 PM

    Hi there!I know that most of these questions are in regards to little babies just starting CIO. Mine is not. :/My daughter is now 15 months old, and as much as I love babywise and love the fact that she sleeps all night… she STILL does CIO at almost every nap. I keep telling myself that maybe she just cries to unwind; but it is extremely awful to still hear her scream herself to sleep, especially since I thought it would have stopped ages ago.We're pregnant with our second and I'm just curious if you have any tips on how to get her to not cry before naps (because I really don't want to be doing CIO with two babies Yikes!)? Or should I just assume that is what she needs to relax?Thanks!

  17. Plowmanators
    May 24, 2010 / 5:44 PM

    D&H, that is 100% normal. I would be shocked if it was any different. I would say just make sure waktime is spot on and then wait for him to be able to fall asleep on his own. See the blog label "optimal waketime" for help in figuring that out.

  18. Plowmanators
    May 24, 2010 / 5:48 PM

    Miss Sabrina, my guess is that it is what she needs. My good friend's oldest son was like that. It seems like he did that until about 2 years old or so. He cried/fussed for about 5 minutes before every nap. At 15 months old, "optimal waketime" is not so tricky to figure out–but you do want to be sure it is right. Before her morning nap and her afternoon nap it should be about 2 hours long. Other than that, be sure she is comfortable and such. Then just wait for her to outgrow it. The good news is that anytime between now and 22 months, she should go down to one nap, so at least it would be only once per day. Hang in there!

  19. D & H
    May 25, 2010 / 3:50 PM

    Thanks-that makes me feel a lot better! The first few days he was really tired, but now he is much more rested and usually is able to fall asleep in about 30 minutes or less.

  20. LEM
    May 28, 2010 / 5:46 AM

    My 4.5 week old typically falls asleep good for naps. I lay her down awake and she goes right sleep. Sometimes she fussed after a few minutes but only slightly. Bedtime is a different story. She will cry the second I put her down after her bedtime routine and will not stop untill her dreamfeed. Then be fine. If I hold her she calms down or if I give her the paci. But I don't want her to be held and the paci falls out way too much. Should I do CIO?I tried to today. She cried on and off for over an hour. I caved in and gave her the paci only to reinsert it every 10 minutes untill dreamfeed. What should I do? I don't mind having her CIO but I didn't think she would still be going after an hour!

  21. Plowmanators
    June 8, 2010 / 6:21 PM

    LEM,I would guess it is the witching hour. I would see the blog label "witching hour" for ideas on what to do.

  22. Meghen
    August 23, 2010 / 10:40 PM

    LOVE this blog – I found it about a week ago and read it religiously – so helpful! I am trying BW with our son and had a few questions;He's a premie – born 5.5 weeks early, so he's currently 3 weeks old, but still negative 2.5 weeks, if that makes sense 🙂 We've been on a decent 2.5 – 3 hour feeding schedule but we have some waketime & naptime issues.1) he takes full feedings – ~25 – 30 min total, but has his eyes closed most of the feeding. He is sucking constantly though – so I think he's awake, just chilling. I'm counting this as part of his waketime.2) I keep having the problem of all or nothing. Either I get him to wake up after nursing and then he stays awake until the next feeding or he goes directly to sleep and sleeps straight through to the next feeding. I've been working on this and have had some success with the Eat/Wake/Sleep cycle – maybe 1 – 2 times a day I can get him to wake for a total of 45 min to an hour (including feeding time) and then down for a nap until next feeding time. However he keeps relapsing into the all wake or all sleep cycle.3) I've tried to start to CIO, but the problem if he's awake and I put him in his bassinet – he cries straight through until the next feed (hour to an hour 1/2) and I just can't take it. Or he's asleep directly from feeding so there is no crying involved. We also run into the problem of him falling asleep after eating and then waking up from his nap early – and refusing to go back down. I can usually get him to hold off until the next feeding by playing with him, but this is obviously the wrong order – Eat/Sleep/Wake!4) I've been pretty steady on the 7am wake time, but we haven't established a set bedtime. I guess I need to do that? I've been letting him guide me, as far as when he's hungry, but always wake him if it hits the 3 hour mark during the day. In the evenings – I let him wake us (which is consistently twice a night at the very least – usually around 1am and 4 am).5) Because he's a premie, I'm not sure how delayed he is going to be as far as adjusting to the BW schedule. He's gaining weight well and is a good eater, but I'm not sure when he's going to sleep though the night, or how much this is affecting his ability to handle waketime. Thanks so much in advance!!!

  23. Plowmanators
    September 2, 2010 / 5:58 PM

    First, it does sound like he is likely taking a little nap at the breast. Sucking isn't the same as eating. I would work to keep him awake while eating. If he has a nap while eating and you then wake him up, he will have had a power nap and won't be tired enough to go to sleep when he should. But also, his adjusted age is in utero, so if he wants to just sleep after eating, I would let him. McKenna was 3 weeks early, and for a while, she was awake long enough to eat and have a diaper change, then she was right back in bed.Be sure you are getting waketime right. For his age, 30 minutes is even long enough. 45 should be his max. If he is awake too long, he won't sleep well.I would just plan on his adjusted age for milestones. So instead of 7-8 weeks for STTN, plan on 12 or later. A hard thing is that one week out of the womb is not equivalent to one week in the womb. More growth happens in than out. So you can't always count on things measuring week for week. Hang in there!

  24. Meghen
    September 3, 2010 / 7:01 PM

    Thank you so much! I was wondering if the preemie thing was throwing me off and have been stressing over the waketime issue. This week has been especially bad – having nap time issues when I force the waketime, he just won't go down at all. I think it's probably because he's overtired. He's yawning and clearly exhausted, but can't sleep. Now in week 5 I can usually get one good waketime out of him where he goes down with no fuss, but I think I will back off of the other times and start when he gets to zero (next week). Again – this blog is a lifesaver!

  25. Plowmanators
    September 14, 2010 / 10:14 PM

    Good luck! I am glad to help.

  26. Sarah
    September 26, 2010 / 9:49 PM

    I think I'm going to start CIO with my 1 month old. I've haven't been able to commit in the past – feeling like he was too young to get screaming mad before a nap. But I've noticed a pattern both for the couple of times I tried CIO recently and when falling asleep in someones arms. He'll cry for 5 minutes, sleep for 10, wake himself up and cry for 5, sleep for 10, etc. I hope it's something he will grow out of, but wondering any tips or if anyone has similar experience?

  27. MJ
    September 28, 2010 / 7:07 PM

    I have a similar question to Sarah's. I have loved your blog and keep referring back to it as I continue to try to follow babywise! We are just getting back on the baby wise bandwagon after focusing on my 8 week old daughter's weight gain due to milk supply troubles. Now that I feel like we are ready to get on a schedule I'm ready to attempt CIO. My pediatritian even told me yesterday to turn my monitor off! Yikes! My daughter can get herself to sleep fairly smoothly…but she struggles to stay asleep. She might fuss on and off 20 min, then appear to be asleep for a good 20-30min, then really start to cry. I noticed you mentioned you wouldn't do CIO in the middle of a nap, but I'm at a loss of what to do. I've tried the baby whisperers shush/pats but honestly it seems to make her more awake or she'll seem out and then jerk awake within 5 mins. She might jerk awake while i'm trying to help her to sleep 3 times within 30-40 min of my attempting shush/pats….which is what has led me to feel ready to really try CIO!! Sometimes I've thought well maybe she is hungry (since I've been so obsessed with her weight gain) but if i get her up early she passes out on me after only an ounce or two. Any suggestions? Thank you!!

  28. MJ
    September 28, 2010 / 7:13 PM

    Oh one more question! I understand the importance of putting your baby down for a nap as soon as the first sleep que is noted…but what about the time they stir in their crib before going down for a nap. I think I get her down in time (calm, limp in my arms, eyes drowsy) but once she is laid flat she'll jerk awake within a few min and then babble/stretch a bit. I'm worried she'll become over-tired in the crib! Also with cry-it-out isn't that going to get her over tired or is that the point?? just wondering!!

  29. Chase & Shalee
    October 12, 2010 / 3:31 PM

    Please help! I am at a total loss. Doing BW for the second time with my 4 week old. Started working on full feedings at birth and eat/wake/sleep and putting to bed awake at week 3. Things started off pretty good (crying 10 – 30 min) and sleeping until next feeding, but it seems we just keep going backwards. Especially for her first nap she cries for over and hour and may or may not go to sleep. I have tried everything from 40 min to 60 min and nothing seems to matter. Her other naps she seems to do better but still a lot of crying and for some she is sound asleep and 5 minutes later awake crying. If I transfer her to the swing after an hour am I starting something bad? Is it better to just let her cry until the next feeding? I worry that she is just over tired all together and that is why we just keep getting worse. I know good sleep=good sleep. I am willing to "go big or go home" but it just does not seem to be working.She is on a 3 hour schedule and waking twice at night. Please help! I do NOT remember it being this hard the first time and am getting totally discouraged. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!

  30. Plowmanators
    October 13, 2010 / 8:53 PM

    Sarah, I haven't ever heard of that exact thing. I know newborns will cry out sometimes in their sleep, but 5 minutes is a long time to do that. I can do a "help a reader out" question on this if you are still having issues. Let me know if you want me to.

  31. Plowmanators
    October 13, 2010 / 8:57 PM

    MJ, do you swaddle? If not, that might help her sleep better and stay asleep better. You can move baby to a swing, rock back to sleep. I would give her 10 minutes to resettle on her own, maybe 15, but if she doesn't, at this age I think it is more important that she sleep for the remainder of the nap so she doesn't get overly tired. There is a post called "waking early for naps/won't fall asleep for naps" that can help you.If you time her waketime correctly, she should settle rather easily. It sounds like you are putting her in bed mostly asleep. I would put her in bed awake. Good luck!

  32. Plowmanators
    October 25, 2010 / 7:30 PM

    Chase & Shalee,I suggest you see my "newborn sleep hierarchy" post.I would do the move to the swing at this age.But I would also look into the possibility of reflux or some other medical issue going on.

  33. threenorns
    November 4, 2010 / 1:48 PM

    if your baby is starting to fall asleep after just a minute or two while feeding, this is NOT a good sign – she needs to be checked by the doctor. my own baby was like that from birth – 30sec max and she was out cold. evaluation showed she was just too weak. her bioscores began to plummet, she went non-responsive, her heart was going crazy (from nearly 300bpm, it'd drop to below 50 then swing back up), so she was induced. i tried to breastfeed, but she was just falling asleep. she couldn't get enough in her tummy and she was getting weaker every hour – at 24hrs, she'd gone from 7lb 10oz to 6lb 4oz. had i not brought it to the doctor's attention and then done something about it, she would've ended up comatose on IV nutrients, possibly brain-damaged or even dead. instead, i stayed in the hospital with her for five days and nursed her every ten minutes for the first 48hrs. i made sure my nipples were dry – once the nipple was wet, it just slid out (she couldn't hold a latch). severe cracks resulted, but it was what had to be done. over the next few weeks as she stayed awake a little longer, i was able to extend the time between feedings a couple minutes at a time until she was a month and a half old and nursing every 2-1/2hrs and that's where she stayed for the next 2yrs. she's 3-1/2now and only nurses first thing in the morning and before going to sleep. she's the size of an average 5 or 6yr old (depending which chart you use), has a very high IQ and an immune system built out of kevlar, but does have developmental issues likely relating to birth trauma or genetics or a combination thereof.

  34. Robyn
    November 7, 2010 / 7:20 PM

    I have a 7 week old. I have been following the babywise 3 hour schedule since he was two weeks old. At night I put him in his crib awake, but sleepy. Naps I most of the time do the same thing. On average he only goes 3-4 hours during feedings at night. He went 6.5 hours ONCE last week. He eats only about 13-17 minutes each feeding. I try for longer, but he doesn't always take more. I also have tried some formula at night along with nursing, but there is no pattern to what he does in response. Sometimes I feel like he is waking up at night not because he is hungry (although he is) but because he's just done sleeping. I have been making him wait to make it to 4 hours if he wakes up before then. He just cries. But he hasn't done anything consistently for me to know he isn't hungry. For his waketime during the day, he is usually awake an hour and a half (including feeding) before he falls asleep. And I always have to wake him to eat next. I'm not sure what else to try, if there is anything to help him go longer at night. Thank you.

  35. Sarah
    November 9, 2010 / 11:55 PM

    Val,Thanks for your reply. Since, I haven't checked back in a while you can tell it's no longer an issue. I read some things at the Google group and a couple people mention it happened when their baby was over tired, so I started putting him down a bit earlier. That in combination with him just learning how to fall asleep eliminated the issue.Just a little feedback for Robyn. I personally would still give it a couple weeks. My baby finally had longer night stretches at 9 weeks. You sound like me in always checking if he wants just a little more at each feeding during the day. Humorously, when my LO wakes up more than normal now, I think it's because he needed to poop and for whatever reason that woke him.

  36. Plowmanators
    November 15, 2010 / 9:11 PM

    Wow Threenorns. That sounds scary!

  37. Plowmanators
    November 15, 2010 / 9:19 PM

    Robyn,There could be a lot of things, or it could be simply the need to wait. See the post "nighttime sleep issues revised and updated" for ideas if there is something you can do.

  38. Jillian Spencer
    November 23, 2010 / 12:59 PM

    Baby is 9 weeks old.Wakes at 45 min mark every nap. Can I give paci or CIO? He sleeps well at night no fussing. Thanks!

  39. marylynn_c
    December 9, 2010 / 3:55 AM

    Hi,Just wondering if you think rocking to sleep as a back up plan would work if baby can't fall asleep? I know that you use it for waking early from a nap but what about for the initial falling asleep? We don't have a swing, do you know an alternative besides these two for getting baby to sleep?Also wondering what to do if witching hour is right in the middle of bedtime. Should I let baby CIO? I think you mentioned that CIO should be consistent for all naps and bedtime? thanks!

  40. lifeimages.
    December 10, 2010 / 11:05 PM

    Hi – and thank you so much for all this on here. I have been referring back to this post reading it over and over so I would be ready – I have now decided to let my 15 week old CIO. She is doing great falling asleep – might only cry for 5 minutes BUT she is waking up at the 45 minute mark. She is now crying for the remaining nap time. It is torturous because I am doing trial and error – I tried to see if it was a hunger thing, she ate but the next time she didn't. Sometimes she will start and stop for the 1/2 hour. Yesterday she got so worked up, I couldn't settle her enough to eat! She wouldn't even settle in my arms. I felt like she hated me… it is breaking me heart!!! I NEED to know I am not hurting her psychologically!My question is this… am I doing the right thing? MOM determines the end of nap right? 1 hour and 1/2 is minimum right? And at this age, I shouldn't be feeding her any less than 3 hours apart right? (all growth signs are good).THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  41. Plowmanators
    December 20, 2010 / 11:39 PM

    Marylynn_c, I think the rocking is fine if you need that. You can see a post "waking early from naps/wont fall asleep for naps" for further ideas.As for witching hour, I don't recommend CIO for that. It won't accomplish anything. See the label "witching hour" for more, but when McKenna had that, I did whatever it took for her to be content during that time period.

  42. Plowmanators
    December 20, 2010 / 11:41 PM

    lifeimages,I would suggest you don't do CIO when she wakes early for now. I would do things outlined in the post "waking early from naps/won't fall asleep for naps"It is totally normal for her to wake at the 45 minute mark when you first start CIO. She will get it. Until then, continue to put her down awake, but then help her through the transition. See the label "45 minute intruder" for more on that.As for feedings, you can feed at 2.5 hours if needed, and always as soon as she is hungry no matter how long it has been.

  43. Charles
    December 24, 2010 / 12:31 AM

    Hello,I have a 3 week old that cries through entire naps at the end of the day – usually the last 2 at least – So I put him down when he gets tired and he cries for an hour or hour an a half until it is time to feed again – so I get him up and feed him because it is time to – but am I afraid that I am sending the message that I am"rescuing" him, but shouldnt I feed him after it has been 2.5 hours???? HELPThanksCorrie

  44. Plowmanators
    January 3, 2011 / 5:38 PM

    Corrie, check the blog label "witching hour"–I think there is a good chances this is the problem right now.

  45. becky
    January 4, 2011 / 4:04 AM

    Thank you so much for all the wonderful help and advice. It's been such a great help. However, I had a bit of a breaking point today.. and a lot of my tears were involved. A few questions… my son is now 10.5 weeks old.1. I know BW states to put your baby to sleep drowsy, but I can't seem to get him to that state. He just doesn't like to be rocked anymore. I try to put him down when he's yawned 1 – 2 times (so I know we're still in the optimal waketime window and he's not too tired) but he won't get drowsy. Should I just put him down when he's wide awake but I know he's getting sleepy? For some reason, he just doesn't like being rocked by either me or my husband anymore. We've tried rocking, sitting and holding upright.. everything. (Side note, when my sister in law or sister hold him, he seems to fall asleep just fine in there arms.)2. How long does it take for them to start going down without fussing? We started at around 6 – 7 weeks so we've been add it for almost a month. The amounts of crying time vary, but there's always crying involved. 3. With #2 said, did I start to early? Today's tears were caused by the guilt. Asking.. did I start too early? Does he not want to be held anymore b/c he's been traumatized?Thanks for all the wonderful help and support.

  46. Plowmanators
    January 11, 2011 / 7:46 PM

    1. My kids were always wide awake when I put them down, though I did the 4 S's with McKenna (see blog label for more on that). 2. There is a post on that, linked in this post. It varies, but most seem to be no-crying or fussing after 8 weeks. You should get to minimal crying or fussing rather quickly, though. 3. No, he hasn't been traumatized. Just work on your timing with optimal waketime length.

  47. liz22
    February 12, 2011 / 3:55 PM

    Hi again! I left a question on your scheduling post last night but have another one…I have been letting my almost 6 week old CIO from birth. For the first 4 weeks I would go in and check on her every 20 minutes (per BW suggestion) but she just seems to cry harder. So I started just leaving her. She does great at every nap except her first one. She wakes at 7 and I have tried laying her down at all different times (trying to see if she was over or under-stimulated) but she ALWAYS cries hard until the next feeding. She is done eating by about 7:25 and I've laid her down anywhere from 7:50 – 8:30…. nothing changes her crying. Any suggestions?

  48. liz22
    February 13, 2011 / 1:39 PM

    Just wanted to update my last post… after reading your blog posts for about two hours yesterday it hit me… she is CIO at 7am until her next feeding bc I'm keeping her up too long, right??? Wrong… I tried putting her to sleep at 7:35 today and she started crying hard again, just like every other time I have tried. So I wanted to let you know I don't think it's that… especially that every other time I've tried she doesn't show any sleep cues like at other times of the day. So today I put her in the swing at 8:10… she has been wide awake the whole time she's been in it ( I moved it to her room so she wouldn't be distracted by her sister). She was quiet the first 15 minutes but has since started crying again…

  49. Nicole
    February 23, 2011 / 9:54 PM

    I am sorry if I am posting about things that have already been covered, but I have been trying to implement the BW method for several weeks. My daughter, Brynn is 10 weeks old. Originally I nursed her, then nursed and supplemented with formula, and now I just feed her formula. I try to feed her every 2.5 to 3 hours during the day. I have been pretty strict about the feeding schedule-feeding every 2.5 to 3 hours but I don't really stick to a same time every day schedule. This is because she wakes up for her middle of the night feeding at different times. She sometimes will wake at 2am, sometimes 3am, and sometimes even at 4am. I feed her and put her back down at this feeding and she will go back to sleep usually for 3 to 4 hours, so we tend to start our day at different times. Should I be starting the day at the same time every day? And trying to stick to a specific schedule every single day? Usually after her first feeding of the day, I make sure she is back down for a nap within an hour of waking…this seems to work (sometimes). Generally we struggle with naps. I don't think I am very adept at reading her cues and I think I often misread the nap cues. Some days she will take wonderful naps with no problem and other days we struggle all day, with her taking only 20-30 minute rests. During the day for naps I give her a pacifier, because I can't stand to have her cry. I also play music for her on a soother…it plays for approximately 20 minutes then shuts off. Should I not use a pacifier? Is it really important to follow the BW method feeding/awake time/nap time? And for a 10 week old-how long should she be awake? How long should her naps be? If she wakes early from a nap should I let her cry it out or get her up or should I just put the pacifier back in and try again?At bedtime, which varies every day…sometimes it is 7pm, sometimes it is 7:30pm, sometimes it is 8pm. I will give her a bottle (usually about 4oz)then she has a little awake time and then I will read books with her and then sing to her. I read the same books and sing the same songs every night. At night I don't give her the pacifier and I have her CIO. I also put on the soother at night…it plays music and it projects lights onto the ceiling. I also swaddle her for naps and for bedtime. When I have her CIO at night sometimes she won't cry at all and then sometimes she will cry and cry. I usually go in and check on her after 10 minutes. I pick her up and comfort her then lay her back down and repeat the process again. Sometimes I have to do this 2-3 times before she falls asleep. I am wondering if it causes a problem that I give her the pacifier during the day, but not at night? If I am doing CIO should I be doing it for naps and for bedtime? Should I be trying to stick to the same schedule every day? Once she is finally asleep she will sleep quite well. Then I do a dream feed around 10-10:30pm each night. Then I allow her to wake me, but as I said, the times she wakes up are different every night. Sometimes 2am, sometimes 3am, etc. Also, she is 10 weeks now, and I wonder if she will drop this late night feeding soon? Is there any way to get her to drop the 2am or 3am feeding and sleep from 10pm-6am or something like that?I am so happy that I found your blog, it has been so helpful to me!

  50. jennymeigs
    February 24, 2011 / 8:31 AM

    I must say that your blog has been an absolute lifesaver! It's my number 1 go-to for help since other than my husband, not many other loved ones or people are supportive of me using babywise. I get told I'm mean a lot but oh well. They don't seem to really want to understand the philosophy 🙂 Anyway, I have a precious little boy that is 10 weeks old (came 5 weeks early). He was doing really well sleeping for his naps and even got to a point where he would only get up once a night (4am) after his DF at 10:30pm, then I would wake him for the day at 7. He does have acid reflux and is on his second medication for it (been on for 2 weeks). He seems to be doing better especially the last couple days in regards to that. Now that you have the background info, my issue is for the last 3 days he won't sleep at night. From about 10pm-3am he refuses to sleep! You can tell he is tired for most of this stretch but he will just cry. We swaddle him every time, sometimes use a pacifier (helps at times), I go check on him after 5-20 minutes and he quiets right down. As soon as I leave the room he starts whaling again! I've even put his swing in his room and used it to no avail. It works sometimes for about 30 minutes. I'm not sure if this would be a factor, but his pediatrician had me go ahead and start him on rice cereal a week ago (1tbsp per oz). I thought this would help the sleep if anything. Not sure what to do! I'm so, so tired. Should I let him CIO for longer intervals? Thank you!

  51. Plowmanators
    February 28, 2011 / 7:05 PM

    Liz22, hard crying really is a sign of overly tiredness. Are y ou positive she is waking at 7? Could she be waking earlier than that but just doesn't make sound until 7? For most babies, the first nap is the nap they go down for the easiest, so I would make sure she really is waking up when you think she is.

  52. Plowmanators
    February 28, 2011 / 7:19 PM

    Nicole, Yes, you should be starting the day at the same time every day within 30 minutes. There is a post all about that if you want to know more.I think it would help you to keep a sleep log. See the label "logs" for more details on that.The feed, wake, sleep cycle is important, yes. The pacifier is up to you. Some moms use it successfully. You can see the "pacifier" label with some helpful info on it. But whatever you do, I would be consistent with naps and bedtime.Most 10 week olds will be awake for one hour. I don't do CIO mid-nap for babies that age. I help them fall back asleep, though waiting 10 minutes will sometimes result in them falling back asleep on their own.You will want bedtime at the same time each day within 30 minutes, also.I would be consistent with CIO, also. She will most like move that one feeding from middle of the night to early morning on her own. Just hang in there–it comes 🙂

  53. Plowmanators
    February 28, 2011 / 7:21 PM

    Jennymeigs, so since he was born 5 weeks early, that puts him at 5 weeks old instead of 10 in adjusted age. I have to wonder if this is witching hour. Check out the posts on that and let me know what you think.

  54. Crystal
    March 2, 2011 / 11:05 PM

    I need help. I have a 6.5 week old. I can't get him to CIO at all. He either goes down well or he doesn't. He either goes down with a little grunt and then goes to sleep on his own within 5-10 mins with no help or he screams for the entire two hours of nap-time. We have been trying to get him to CIO since 2 weeks old. I have seen him go to sleep after screaming for an hour one time. Only one time since 2 weeks of life until now at 6.5 weeks of life. I want to know if anyone else has been in this position and it eventually worked. So far I haven't seen a post like that. I don't see a point in continuing to let my infant cry for two hours at a time if it never works. Also I am really confused at the posts that say they have to wake their baby for feedings at night. So that might determine that their baby might not need that feeding any more. Um. I have to wake my baby for every feeding (granted it is one of the times he hasn't screamed the whole time in between feedings). If it is one of the times he has slept for the 2 hour nap I have to wake him. Isn't that they way it is supposed to be, that your baby sleeps through the entire nap?My next question is, my baby is very inconsistent when we let him sleep as long as he can after the last scheduled feeding. Sometimes he sleeps for an hour and then wakes up (he does not do this during the day) and sometimes he sleeps for 3 hours, once or twice it was four hours, then the next night he went back to only sleeping 2 hours before he woke up. Is this kind of inconsistency normal? We do the feed/wake/sleep cycle all day long. I keep him awake for feedings and normally put him back down after being awake 45-60 after waking him for the daytime feedings. I am also curious on how to extend his wake time to 20 minutes+feeding when that time comes. Right now if I keep him up too long he screams. Do you extend it in increments? and then once again he has never been able to CIO. I only intervene to make sure he is safe and that is it. I don't put him in a swing or soothe him any other way and he again has only CIO to sleep ONE time in four weeks so I am beginning to think it really doesn't work. I don't want to put myself or my baby through this any more if no one else has had this problem and then had a breakthrough. Thanks for your support.

  55. Crystal
    March 6, 2011 / 10:51 PM

    I want to leave a follow up comment. I wasn't fair in not saying that sometimes after an 1.5 we do use a pacifier. There have been times we have let him go the whole 2 hours (checking on him of course and telling him it's ok) but a lot of times I can't take it after that length of time and I give him the pacifier. Again there are times (few but they do happen) that he goes down and just wimpers or cries softly for 5 minutes and goes to sleep but the other times he screams the whole time and has only self-soothed once in four weeks. Please if you have a post where anyone has experienced this and done CIO without a pacifier or intervening and it has eventually worked I would like to know. Most of the posts I have read show where the baby has cried for 5-30 not hours. I am not saying they don't exist, I just can't find where that has happened but would love to know if it has and they have been successful because I am discouraged.Also our baby is on this schedule:7,10,1,4,7,10 with the feed/wake/sleep cyclewe do one more feeding at 12 where we do not play with him we just put him down. Would this be a dreamfeed? And if so I see where DF normally occur between 10-11 but then we wouldn't be getting enough feedings in for the day and plus he would wake up really early so I am confused.One more thing (sorry I keep thinking of more questions I have had ) should we be playing with him at 10 also? I was under the impression that the only feedings where you should put your baby down and not play with them is the feedings in the after the last feeding when they wake you up. Is this correct?Thank you again for your help and your website!

  56. Sarah
    March 14, 2011 / 3:11 PM

    Hi,I'm hoping you'll be able to help me with our current sleeping dilemma. Our daughter, who will turn 4 months old this week, has always been a pretty good sleeper. She's slept through the night since about 10 weeks, and she usually puts herself to sleep for naps, and has since she was about 4 weeks old. The exceptions to this rule happen when she's overtired or if she falls asleep in the car dropping or picking up her older sister from preschool. When these things happen, she naps in her swing or I will rock her to sleep. However, she's always had definite 45 minute sleep intruders. She puts herself to sleep with very little crying (usually two minutes or less) but then almost always wakes up crying 45 minutes later and then can't seem to get back to sleep. Occasionally after several minutes of crying, she'll fall asleep again, but then it's generally only for a few minutes, and then it's back to crying. She's still taking four naps each day, and I will usually "rescue" her for one of these naps and let her sleep in my arms while her older sister watches a video to avoid having her become too overtired. However, this is finally interfering with night sleep. She has woken up every 45 minutes after going to bed at night for several nights in a row. I'll let her cry-it-out, she'll sleep for 45 mintues, and then we do it all over again. This happens several times before she finally gets into a deeper nighttime sleep. She was sleeping from 9 p.m. until 7:30 a.m. until the disruptions began. Any suggestions on how to get past this? I thought since she always put herself to sleep she'd have an easier time putting herself back to sleep, but that doesn't seem to be the case. Any help or advice for this sleep deprived mama would be appreciated!

  57. Plowmanators
    March 21, 2011 / 9:03 PM

    Crystal,Not all babies sleep until the next feeding–lots wake up earlier. If your baby sleeps until the next feeding, then be happy for that :)Inconsistency in nighttime was normal for my kids.There are some posts on extending waketime. The short version is that you don't extend it–you watch for cues for your baby to extend. For more information, see the blog index under "waketime"Your dreamfeed should be happening at 10 PM. So feed him at 7 PM, then put him down for the night after that. Get him at 10 and feed him, then put him right back down with no interaction or playing.So far as the CIO, it is not normal to cry for that long without ever falling asleep. I would suggest you look closely at this post. Is he in some sort of pain or something?Find that right waketime length. Take notes. Those times he falls asleep after a wimper or a soft cry for 5 minutes, those are the times things happened right. Waketime was right, activities were not too stimulating, room darkeness was right, house sounds were right…etc.Good luck!

  58. Plowmanators
    March 21, 2011 / 9:07 PM

    Sarah,First, is it a growth spurt? Have you tried feeding her right away when she wakes early?Second, do you use a pacifier? If so, it might be that she is waking up without it and having a hard time falling back asleep.Third, it is a normal time of fussiness for babies. See the label "wonder weeks" for more, but it is totally normal for a baby that age to have sleep issues–Babywise or not. If she is not hungry, I would give her 10-15 minutes to see if she will fall asleep on her own. If not, I would then move her to a swing or hold her until she falls asleep and then I would put her back in her crib so she can nap there. Good luck!

  59. SMoore
    April 15, 2011 / 6:25 PM

    I have a 9 1/2 week old baby boy and my husband and I started the BW techniques about a 2 weeks ago. We have seen a significant change (for the better) since starting, however, when we put him down for a nap and let him CIO he will cry for his full nap time and never fall asleep. We check on him and make sure he is OK, and sometimes pick him up to burp him and he stops crying as soon as he is in our arms. But if we bounce him to sleep first and then put him in his crib he does better, although his naps will only last for about 30 minutes. I don't know what to do. Because if we let him CIO, he will cry for an hour and a half or more and never fall asleep, but I don't want him to rely on us having to bounce him to sleep every time. My back can't handle that lol. Basically he sleeps better when he is moving. Please help!

  60. Plowmanators
    May 2, 2011 / 5:52 PM

    SMoore,That is typical for a baby who has been used to one sleeping method have a hard time adjusting to another one. I would encourage you to read through the posts on CIO well–especially this one and the Optimal waketime length ones. Then be consistent with it. See also posts on what to do if they won't fall asleep. You will all eventually "get it" so hang in there!

  61. Plowmanators
    May 27, 2011 / 8:34 PM

    The pacifier–you will have to go on your gut with that. For some babies, it is an issue but isn't for others. You will have to go with what you think.Keep a log to see if checking on her is a good idea or not. Also, a great product is a video monitor (I have one from Summer). That way you can check without disrupting. Good luck!

  62. heidihana
    June 14, 2011 / 5:43 PM

    Valerie, Thank you for sharing your experience and research. I found this blog to be exactly what I needed. I'm trying to increase my sanity level right now- I have four children, the youngest is 9 months old after a 5 year gap. Needless to say, I'm busy! And I haven't been good at consistency for her, so she needs a little sleep training. She's still waking twice a night, and naps are too often interrupted for school pick-ups or other non-negotiable schedule items 🙂 I have some great tools to work with now, though. Thanks for the wonderful blog!

  63. Plowmanators
    July 8, 2011 / 10:03 PM

    You are welcome!

  64. Lauren Oksiuta
    September 14, 2011 / 4:27 PM

    so, what if my baby doesn't sleep long during her nap? for example, she fed at 9:00, went down at 10:00 and is now up screaming at 11:15 a.m. she isn't ready to eat again (she is a big baby… 13 lb. 6 oz at 6 wks), so what do i just keep her awake and hold off the feed? any advice or help would be much appreciated.

  65. Plowmanators
    September 30, 2011 / 5:24 AM

    Lauren, I have a post titled "waking early from naps/won't fall asleep for naps" that answers that question 🙂

  66. reba
    October 4, 2011 / 10:52 PM

    hi…..i just discovered your blog and it is full of awesome advice. my 4 week old son hardly ever sleeps. not like all the other new borns i hear about. he is wide awake all day……i usually try to put him down for a nap two times a day and he will sleep for 2-3 hours a nap when and if he does fall asleep. i just started letting him CIO and i honestly don't know what to do. he will cry sometimes for up to 2 hours. i check on him and we also have a video monitor which is awesome but i hate hearing him cry for that long. another thing is he will cry up to when i should feed him next so i will go get him and feed him and lay him down again only to have him cry for another hour or two. so for example i feed him at 9am, he will eat for an hour, i lay him down at 10:30am and he will cry till 12:30pm…..i know that it has been 3 hours since i fed him last so i will go get him, feed him, than lay him down again and he will still cry for forever. i feel like such a horrible mom having him cry for that long but i just don't know what to do. i want to teach him to self soothe and fall asleep on his own but this is just ridiculous. i havent' really been consistent just cuz of having to get him to feed him so that requires picking him up which i wonder if he knows i will so he just keeps crying. but he is always just wide awake when i do get my question is what do i do?? is this ok to let him cry for that long?? is he just not tired when i lay him down? what did you do with your son bredyn who didn't like sleeping and you couldn't' go in there and mess with him or it would make him worse? should i just let him cry till he eventually falls asleep? does he know i will go in there eventually to pick him up to feed him so that's why he just cries and cries?your advice would be so appreciated!

  67. Plowmanators
    October 16, 2011 / 2:46 AM

    Reba,Be sure to follow the advice here on CIO.I do wonder if he is falling asleep while you are nursing him. If so, he is getting little power naps that will make it so he isn't tired when real nap time comes along. So make sure he is staying awake during feedings.Start with that, and follow the advice here. If that doesn't work, check out the book Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child and read about the "extinction method" for CIO.

  68. Mousse
    October 25, 2011 / 4:09 PM

    I have a 4 week old and am ready to start cry it out. I am going back to work in 9 weeks and want him on a schedule. I have a few questins. 1.How long do I let him cry it out. When I have tried it he would cry for about 30-45 mins, the scream it out, I am dying cry. I have tried going in and patting him and sticking paci in mouth and then leaving him again, but still he cried. I did this at 3 weeks and decided I just couldnt do it. So here I am again. If I remember correctly I just start the CIO at nap time first? 2.He falls asleep while eating and I do everything to wake him up. It usually takes an hour but I get a feeding in. So my questions is do I wake him up to put him in his bed or can I just lay him down in his bed? It just doesnt seem like it is teaching him to self sooth if I put him in his bed asleep. Yesterday I laid him in his bed and he just smiled and "played" for an hour never crying. 3. We are pretty much on a feeding schedule it might vary 30 mins, but thinking ahead is it better to start my first feeding at a time when I will be feeding him when I go back to work or for now just let him keep on his schedule? I haven't honestly figured out how that is going to work. Right now he is still eating every 2-2.5 hours. He had been going 4-5 hours at night until last night when he woke up to eat every 3 hours. I am hoping this is a growth spurt because this mom needs more than 2 hours of sleep at a time. Thank you for this blog and for your help. Bess

  69. Plowmanators
    November 9, 2011 / 4:39 AM

    Hi Mousse,1-It really depends on the type of crying and I think listening to "your gut" is always important. Really work on getting that optimal waketime length right and the crying should not be very long at all.2-If he is falling asleep while eating then he will have a harder time falling asleep when it is sleep time. He will have essentially had a "power nap." So continue to work on keeping him awake during feeding time.3-If you don't know for sure what you will do when you go back to work, I would stay with what you have for now. Once you know for sure what you will do, you can move toward changing your schedule up. Good luck!

  70. MandM
    December 13, 2011 / 3:46 PM

    Hello! I have been reading several of your posts because my husband recently started (about 2 weeks ago) CIO with our now 4 month old son. I was a naive first time mom and didn't want my baby to cry at all so we co slept (in his co sleeper and our bed) for about the first 15 weeks but then he started crying no matter what we did. We decided to do CIO, though I was initially very against it, with encouragement from his dr. The first night he cried 5.5 hours and I felt like a terrible mother. We went in every 10 minutes to try and soothe him, changed him when he was dirty and I fed him a couple times. It has now decreased down to 1-2 hours of crying each night but doesn't seem to be decreasing from there. I talked to his dr. after the night of 5.5 hours and they said that this was fine, while not typical. Now, we go in every 30 min and try and soothe him, sniff to make sure he isn't poopy and feed him when he needs fed. Usually I can read his cues of sleepiness (rubbing eyes, yawn, getting fussy) but perhaps the problem is that I'm missing that optimal time of putting him down? Before doing CIO he was getting up every 1-3 hours but now he is sleeping 7-10 hrs straight, so it's working, I would just like to decrease his crying time. Any suggestions would be great! Thanks for this blog, I needed to read it today after receiving criticism and articles on how I'm "harming" my baby by CIO!

  71. Plowmanators
    December 28, 2011 / 8:57 PM

    MandM,So is he sleeping 7-10 hours and then you are doing CIO, or is it CIO before he falls asleep initially?If it is initially, I would say he is overly tired at that point. I would make sure he has regular naps all day and that he is having "optimal waketime." That really is the key to little or no crying. Good luck!

  72. mom2alana
    January 6, 2012 / 1:28 AM

    hi!your blog has given me new hope and something to look forward to…thank you so much for the time you dedicate to it! My babygirl is 8 weeks old now and im at the point where i believe we should give cio a shot. she sometimes will fall asleep on her own for her morning 10a nap and for her others with a pacifier or in her swing but every night when its time for bed she will cry and fuss on and off for hours. she will feed at 7p and sleep but wakes around 10 or 11 for another feeding and will fight sleep until 145am! once she falls asleep she can go until 6 or 7am but i cant get her to settle at night. i wonder if there is something im doing wrong? 🙁 We live in a 1 bedroom apartment so she is sharing a room with us so i was wondering how would i go about cio in this situation? is it possible if we are in the room sleeping at the same time? will she smell us and not give up? I would really appreciate your input on this. i was also wondering should i comfort her during the cio process if shes been crying for a while? and if so is it ok to pick her up? thanks so much in advance

  73. Plowmanators
    January 12, 2012 / 8:56 PM

    mom2alana,It is a bit odd that she is having a hard time settling after the 10/11 feeding. I would take this to mean either day/night confusion or a witching hour issue. I would check into both of those before proceeding.If neither of those are the issue, then I would recommend you not be in the room while she does CIO. I would suggest you sleep on the couches for a week or on a blow up mattress in the family room. It is okay to pick her up if you think it helps her learn to sleep on her own better. Some babies have a hard time with interference, others do not. Good luck!

  74. Kelly S
    January 15, 2012 / 3:33 PM

    Thank you so much for this post – we just started letting our 9-week old little guy CIO yesterday. We waited so long because he's been very colicky – he often has bad gas and screams hard while his legs go like mad. But the past week I've noticed when going in to settle him/burp him, that he stopped crying as soon as I reached in the crib. I knew the crying had transitioned from "my tummy hurts" to "I want you to come get me out of here." It was a different kind of cry.Your words "It is SO HARD to listen to your baby cry. It put me in tears so many times…" keep resonating with me, and have kept me going the last two days. He's screaming through entire naps all day right up to his dream feed, but I know if we push through this, it will get better, and he'll be able to settle himself. Your blog has been a huge blessing for my husband and I through doing BW!

  75. MandM
    January 18, 2012 / 8:15 PM

    He was CIO before sleeping 7-10 hours. We stopped doing CIO because I felt guilty and now he is getting up every hour. I know we need to do CIO but I just feel so guilty about it, but holding him and not letting him cry isn't working either! I think I have discovered one issue we were having. We were putting him down at 7:30 when he was tired and like clock work he would wake up in 30 min and want to play. He was treating this as a nap and I don't think he was ready for bed. He seems happier now that we are doing a 10pm bed time (I know it's late, but earlier just didn't work) but he's just not sleeping…

  76. Plowmanators
    January 30, 2012 / 11:40 PM

    you are welcome Kelly! And keep a log, and keep trying to find his perfect waketime length. That should help him have less crying for a nap.

  77. Plowmanators
    January 30, 2012 / 11:44 PM

    Good luck MandM. Follow the steps in this post and you will get there–but he sure he doesn't have gas or reflux pain.

  78. jbone
    February 2, 2012 / 7:37 PM

    Hi there I have a question for you! Our daughter is 10 weeks old and has been sleeping with us at night. Although, she sleeps really well we are wanting to get her in her own crib for obvious reasons. We started doing CIO for her naps a week ago in her crib and she has done remarkably well. She goes to sleep now within 5 minutes. At night is a different story! We have tried putting her in her crib and she falls asleep for 40 mins and then wakes up and cries for hours only to eventually fall back asleep for another short nap and be up again. I don't know what to do!

    • Plowmanators
      February 24, 2012 / 2:46 AM

      Do you have her swaddled? Is the room warm enough for her? Is the timing of her bedtime right?

  79. elle19
    March 16, 2012 / 12:52 AM

    Hi. I love your blog it is so helpful! I need some advice on CIO..I started BW when my daughter was around 9 weeks..putting her down for naps went well at first just a few mins of fussing and then to sleep..but after the first week she cried for about 45 mins one day and I picked her up. Ever since then CIO has been impossible. She will literally scream crying for the entire length of her nap. I am at a loss. I know she knows she will be "rescued" so she continues to cry. What should I do? I have tried checking on her every 15 mins but it seems to make it worse. I know its because of my inconsistency I'm having this problem. Well CIO ever work for her again?

  80. elle19
    March 16, 2012 / 1:01 AM

    One more thing to she CIO for about 20 mins..I thought we had made progress but she only slept for 15 mins. Then I tried to make her CIO to go back to sleep but 30 mins later she was still crying and it was time for a bottle. She sleeps excellent at night..napping has been a challenge since day one.

    • Plowmanators
      April 17, 2012 / 9:24 PM

      Elle19, For now, if she falls alseep at all, as soon as she wakes up, I would either get her up and move on or try moving her to a swing.CIO will work so long as waketime length is correct and there is nothing impeding progress (like reflux or some other medical condition). She might do better swaddled, she might do better unswaddled. There are so many factors, so be sure to read all of the posts on CIO and go from there. Good luck!

  81. Ellen Marie
    March 18, 2012 / 6:43 PM

    We are starting CIO w/ our 2 month old for naps. (He has been sleeping through the night since 6 weeks) He'll fall asleep easily if he has just been fed (hence him sleeping well after his last feeding for the night) but doesn't sleep well on his own for naps.So, my question is if he doesn't fall asleep for his nap and we're letting him CIO, his "optimal waketime" is completely off, right? So, say I fed him at 2, put him down at 3 and he doesn't fall asleep at all and it's time for his next feeding at 4:30…then he hasn't slept but I don't want to just feed him and let him fall right asleep, right? So, how do I do CIO but still try to not let him get over stimulated??

    • Plowmanators
      April 17, 2012 / 9:26 PM

      Ellen Marie, See my posts on "Won't fall asleep for naps/waking early from naps" as well as "newborn sleep hierarchy" for some ideas for avoiding this.If he did not sleep before a feeding, I would most likely either rock him to sleep or put him in a swing for the next nap. If he is too tired, CIO won't be effective.

  82. Lovett's Third Grade
    April 10, 2012 / 1:54 PM

    Hi! I have a question- we started CIO with our 10 week old and it went great! She cried 27 minutes the first night and by night 3, there was no crying and she put herself to sleep! We were so excited! The problem came in the middle of the night. Bedtime is at 7:30, she eats 5 "daytime" meals before this bedtime and gets 4 pretty good naps. We were doing a dreamfeed around 10:30 where she would take about 5oz from the bottle. She has not had a MOTN feed in about a week- she had been waking up in the night, but we soothed her back to sleep and therefore realized she doesn't need to eat in the MOTN. SO, after starting CIO, we were hopeful she would sleep through the night, esp. after such a good DF. But each night (only been doing this 3 nights!) she woke up at 2:00. Because we were doing CIO, we let her fuss/cry till about 3:30 and then we figured she needed to get some sleep. The problem is/was she was so awake by that point that getting her back to sleep was hard! So last night we decided the DF wasn't working and to just let her wake us up for that last feed. We fed her the bottle at midnight when she woke up… and four hours later she was awake again and we let her fuss from 4:00-5:30.So my question is HOW TO GET HER TO SLEEP THROUGH THE NIGHT? If we know she isn't hungry (although after four hours, she is probably a little hungry, but we know she can go longer) should we just let her CIO no matter how long it takes- whether at 2:00 or 4:00? How do we break her of waking up like this in the middle of the night?? I would be happy to feed her if i thought that was what she needed, but it is never a hunger cry. Do we need to just stick with it for awhile longer and she'll learn? How long would you let her cry in the middle of the night (its never screaming crying, just off and on fussing/talking). And if we let her do that for a while, won't she get overtired from being up for so long? I would love to know what you would do in this situation- I find your blog so helpful! Thank you so much!-Maggie

  83. Lovett's Third Grade
    April 10, 2012 / 3:58 PM

    follow up on my ?: Even though she has shown that she does not need a MOTN feeding, have i dropped it too soon? If i feed her when she wakes up at 2 or 4, will that be going backwards? Should we establish good sleep before trying to drop the MOTN feed? (she does not have a sleep association with nursing). Or should we just keep letting her CIO when she wakes at these intervals (always 4 hours from her last feed). How can we teach her to stretch a little longer? THANKS!

    • Plowmanators
      April 17, 2012 / 9:29 PM

      I don't do CIO in the night because I A) don't trust my judgement in the night and B) know I will be impatient to wait it out even if CIO is warranted. I would say that what you first want to do is figure out why she is waking each night. You mentioned she was waking and you were soothing her back to sleep, so she has always been waking. You want to figure out why she is waking and then work to remove that reason. It could be hunger. It could be temperature. It could be discomfort. There are so many things it could be, and if you don't remove the reason, CIO isn't going to solve the problem. Good luck!

    • Plowmanators
      April 17, 2012 / 9:33 PM

      Maggie, I think you first need to figure out why she is waking. It sounds like she has always been waking since you were soothing back to sleep, so I would figure out why she is waking and then remove that reason. If you don't remove the reason, CIO won't be effective. Good luck!

    May 7, 2012 / 1:51 AM

    Hi miss baby wise, At the moment my child is turning six weeks. she is so clingy. she just wants to be held even if she's not going to sleep. I started her on CIO last night, until now i am following your suggestions to do it every nap time.On the first two times was her night time feeding. She would sleep after 10 mins or so. My only problem is every time she passed gas.So she wakes up soon after. Then after that she won't sleep anymore till her next feeding. It's killing me to hear her cry like that but I know I have to be strong. I thought of doing CIO because she began having difficulty in sleeping after I stopped breastfeeding her. I am purely doing bottle feeding. The thing is when I was breastfeeding, she falls asleep while feeding on it. but with bottle feeding she's awake for hours. you have to rock her and cradle her. and when you put her down and she realizes that nobody is holding her she wakes up almost immediately. Thank you,I hope to hear from you.

  85. senga
    July 10, 2012 / 8:01 PM

    Hi there. Thanks so much for this site!We are currently doing CIO for our 4 month old-modified CIO while getting rid of soother and it is going well pre naps and at bedtime. However, he wakes in the middle of the night 3-4 times still! I will usually try to feed him but he essentially uses me as a soother and falls asleep within minutes. Do I let him CIO in the middle of the night?Thanks for any help!!

  86. senga
    July 10, 2012 / 8:02 PM

    Hi there. Thanks so much for this site!We are currently doing CIO for our 4 month old-modified CIO while getting rid of soother and it is going well pre naps and at bedtime. However, he wakes in the middle of the night 3-4 times still! I will usually try to feed him but he essentially uses me as a soother and falls asleep within minutes. Do I let him CIO in the middle of the night?Thanks for any help!!

  87. Kelly
    July 26, 2012 / 12:37 AM

    Hi! I am late on starting BW in regards to my LO sleep. He is a big guy, at 21 weeks he is 20lbs, sporting two teeth with two more coming in, and enjoying solids! For the last few months he has been inconsistent, sometimes sleeping until 4-5am (bed at 7-7:30pm) and sometimes waking around 1-2am and 4-5am. I finally hit my breaking point because I realized he was using me as a paci at the 1-2am feed. So we decided three days ago to try to CIO. He is also used to being rocked to sleep for all naps, and is getting to heavy for me to do that as well. The first three days were great, he actually slept through to 4-5am with not fussing two days, and one day he woke, fussed for 20 min, then went back to sleep. However, last night was our first real taste, he cried/fussed for 3 hours before finally falling asleep. He actually woke up because he rolled onto his back, he is a tummy sleeper and his arms go a million miles and hour when he is on his back. We used to swaddle him but he can break out of any swaddle, did so around 4 months. He is a great roller, can go across our family room, so it's not a matter of not being able to do it.Anyhow, he cried, on his back for those three hours, I went in once after two hours, rolled him, but he rolled right back. He actually ended up passing out on his back after those three hours, and slept about 2 more before I got up to feed him at 5am. I was debating, but after reading this post realize I need to CIO for all his naps as well, I am not consistently letting him do so, but am just looking for a little support and advice as to how I am doing and what direction I should continue heading. This is one of the hardest things, and my husband isn't home every night so I am doing a lot of this alone, which I know some of you moms can sympathize with:)Thank you for this post and and encouraging comments!

  88. RealtorSD
    August 7, 2012 / 10:33 PM

    I am in desperate need of help. My 5 month old takes 20 minute naps twice a day and wakes up literally every hour at night, every night. I've tried so many different things…we tried CIO only once and I am afraid to do it again but think it might be the only thing that could help.When we let him CIO we did our nightime routine first, calmly talked to him and then put him down drowsy. We then went in every 3 minutes to check on him and speak softly to him. He did not cry it out. He SCREAMED it out. And started breathing heavily and coughing and made himself vomit everywhere. So my question is what is a normal "cry" for CIO, is screaming ok?….What if a baby vomits? I feel so afraid of him getting hurt but I need sleep so desperately. Thank you so much for the help.Sarah

  89. Ryan Price
    August 26, 2012 / 9:12 PM

    I am, like many of the posters, in desperate need of help. I've been trying to follow Babywise since I brought Alex home. It was difficult at first because she wasn't feeding well and I needed to do a lot of cluster feeding and I had a train of visitors everyday. I think during those first 6 weeks she just got used to people (myself included) holding her during the day. The last two weeks I've been making a better effort to be on a three hour Sleep – feed – play schedule. Thankfully, she is a great night sleeper. After the dreamfeed around 10:30 she stays asleep until 5:30 – 6 (which is when I want to start the day). It's her napping that has both of us in tears. She starts her day happy and all smiles. She has a good feeding. We start to play, and she begins to show signs of sleep. I put her down — she screams. She'll end up crying from the moment I put her down to the time I pick her up for her next feeding. A the next feeding she is exhausted so she starts to fall asleep while feeding (now not getting a full feeding). She will then be completely out on me…until I put her in her crib, which is when she starts screaming. She may doze off for about 10 minutes or so, but will then wake up crying. Long story short, she will do this for the rest of the remaining cycles until about 5 when she has her final feeding before our evening routine. We've been at it for two weeks and I just don't see it getting better. I've checked out all the other posts on sleep/nap problems and troubleshooting, but nothing is working, other than picking her up and letting her sleep in my arms for a few minutes, have a snack at my breast, going back to sleep for a few more minutes, etc, etc. I have her in her crib crying, while I'm on my bed crying. Any insight would be appreciated. Thanks so much, Ryan

  90. Brian
    August 31, 2012 / 1:11 PM

    Hi there. I had been very much against cry it out but over the last couple of weeks I have seen my LO's naps getting worse and worse. I am very careful about wake time, but we are now at the point that my son screams for up to 45 min when being put down, this is even with me rocking him. I gave CIO a shot for a day and after listening to him scream for an hour and a half at two different nap times and never falling asleep I gave up. But now that I can't ever get him to sleep and additionally he's begun to wake up every 2 hours at night instead of his one late night feeding I feel like we have no other choice. He's always been an incredibly happy baby but now is beginning to be fussy due to lack of sleep. We are waiting til after labor day to begin since we will be traveling. I have a few questions. We will be traveling at the end of the month and I know we are supposed to wait until we aren't traveling but I don't see how we can wait a whole five more weeks. Is it ok to start and give it a solid three weeks and then travel? Also I have seen that my son is like yours in that when I check on him he screams even more and won't fall asleep. Does that mean I need to let him cry until he falls asleep or just until his next feeding? What did you do with Brayden? Lastly, how do you adjust with traveling in different time zones later on. Thank you so much! Since finding your blog I feel like we can maybe do this.

  91. Brian
    August 31, 2012 / 1:58 PM

    Oops, I realized that I was on my husbands account when I posted this. This is Ellen.

  92. andreaqn
    September 14, 2012 / 8:48 PM

    I need help. I feel like I am doing something wrong. My daughter is 5 weeks old, and we started CIO last week. I get her real good and relaxed before her naps, and then I put her down. Her eyes generally pop open when I lay her down and she either looks around for a while and drifts to sleep, looks around a while and fusses after 5 or 10 minutes, or just goes straight to sleep. My problem is, about 30 minutes later and continually afterward she wakes up and SCREAMS for about 10 or 15 minutes. It's excruciating. Sometimes I watch her and she looks asleep and sometimes she is having such a fit I'm tempted to go comfort her. I will say, most of the time when I don't get her she goes to sleep and sleeps solid for an hour, but the other times are so up and down it makes me feel I am doing something wrong. Does this sound familiar at all? Why does this happen? Her night sleeping is good (knock on wood!) it's these naps, especially the fourth one. Today it's been all of them, and I'm so tired of feeling like a terrible mother. How long does the crying like this last? Please help me, I feel so desperate!

  93. ANeff
    December 22, 2012 / 3:05 PM

    My baby boy is just over 9 weeks old and we're starting sleep training now. We waited because he had some dietary issues we had to work out first. Now that he's happy we need to start getting him to sleep on his own. I don't know how to handle keeping him on a feeding schedule when he wakes up after only 30 minutes of sleep. When he wakes up crying I go in and check on him to make sure it's not gas or a diaper. Once that's ruled out I put him back down and he starts to self soothe but then he starts crying again. He had a full feeding 1.5 hours ago so he's not supposed to eat for another hour to 1.5 hours. What do you do? I worry if I feed him that he'll just start snacking instead of full feeds. Thanks for your help as I'm a first time mom and this is definitely all new to me!

  94. Garrett and Denise Stone
    December 24, 2012 / 5:56 PM

    Hello and Merry Christmas Eve!So I think I am ready to begin CIO as I am kind of tired of the bad sleeping and hope to create good habits with my second baby! She is now 15 weeks old. Ive tried before and was left being inconsistent as it was pretty hard this time around for some reason. I have come to the conclusion I need to do CIO as I cant imagine that her wake times are causing all these problems. I have also decided that whether I am doing 45 min wake time or 60 min she is the same. So I am started with 60 min and winding down at 50. I tried this today and she slept from 855am-950am when I started to hear her cry. If I go in or put her in the swing to finish her nap she wont sleep, and I don't want to be holding her for it like I have been the past 15 weeks when she would cry. Do you suggest I let her CIO when she wakes up at 45 or an hour into her nap? I am trying to do a 3 hour routine and I am not sure how to do that if she wakes an hour early crying and I wait to feed her at the usual scheduled time. It seems it would mess up her waketime on the other end and kind of mess up the whole schedule? Do you reccomend going to a 2.5 hour routine when trying to do CIO so she is not crying for as long in the beggining, until she gets the hang of it? Thanks again!

  95. Garrett and Denise Stone
    January 4, 2013 / 11:53 PM

    Hello.Im trying to start letting my daughter (17weeks) 3.5 months CIO. Weve never had consistently good naps and I am pretty sure Im on her wake time or in the range at least. I have a hard time believing that 5 minutes either way would make her that OT or UT. I have comforted her for so long with naps etc. Going in holding her and I think I have to just let her figure it out and sleep on her own. She never has a hard time going down maybe fusses a minute but then will wake early in her nap consistently. I am wondering.. I cant hold her and go in there as it makes naps worse just like for your son. Do I just let her cry until next feeding? and if I do then how do you figure out wake time for her next nap? I feel like shes just going to be OT all day since shes napping maybe 30 minutes at a nap. I know it will get better just need encouragement! Thanks

  96. Blair
    January 7, 2013 / 7:30 PM

    I have a 6 week old who was born 2.5 weeks early. We had family in town for 6 weeks straight so I'm finally trying to get her on more of a consistent schedule / routine. I am still having a hard time keeping her awake for feelings and have tried everything I can think of. She has started sleeping 4-6 hour stretches through the night, once she falls asleep. She does well in the middle of the night and after the early morning feed. But. The rest of the time she is much more restless when sleeping in her crib. I am trying CIO now, and am on day 2.5. Yesterday she did really well, but also just seemed sleepier in general. Today, she will cry off and on for 15-20 min while trying to fall asleep (I put her down awake), then sleep for about 20-30 min solid, and then start fussing again. The last time I tried her swing and paci to no avail; I think she was hungry early. This time she seems to settle herself down after only a minute or two. I'm concerned she may not be getting enough good sleep while this is going on, which then could affect her ability to get a full feeding. I'm trying to look for sleep cues but sometimes I really think she could stay awake for hours. Any suggestions or recommendations? If she wakes after only 20-30 min, do I still let her CIO or should I get her at that point? She's only 7 lbs still do sometimes I think she may just be hungry sooner than 2.5-3 hrs. Any help is much appreciated!

  97. Brandi Helms
    February 17, 2013 / 6:42 PM

    We started babywise when my son was 3 weeks old. By 4 weeks he was sleeping in his own crib in his room. we swaddled him and put him in his nap nanny inside his crib. This worked very well for us. We could lay him down awake and he would fall asleep own his own. he would go to bed around 10p and sleep until around 5am. I would feed him and swaddle him and out him back to bed and he would sleep until around 8:30. We were on a 3 hr schedule and naps were in the swing.My mother in law keeps him during the day. At some point around 3 months old he stopped falling asleep on his on in the swing. When I realized this was a problem we did CIO 1 day for 20 mins in swing and he was back on track. My son is 5 1/2 months old now. Last week I realized naps are a problem again when I asked my mother in law to transition him to crib for naps. We decided we had to get him out of the nap nanny at night because he can roll now and I was afraid he was gonna hurt himself. I asked my mother in law to do this during the day thinking it would be easier than my husband and I doing it at night when we had to get up early for work the next day. Anyways, it was a disaster. When I got home from work my mother in law was crying and frazzled and my son had slept maybe an hour total for the day.I then found out she had been "letting him fall asleep in her arms" and putting him down in swing and that his naps had been shortened to 30 mins. Again im not sure when this started. I decided to tackle the problem with CIO this weekend. Friday night we had an ever so smooth transition to the crib. Asleep by 10 on his own and not a peep until 6am. Naps, however, not so smooth. Saturday his first "nap" was 1hr and 15min of crying until we moved him to swing. He cried for 5 mins then slept for 50 mins. Next nap I decided to start in swing. He cried for an hour and 20 mins until I let my husband give in and rock him. The last attempt of the day was 2 hours of screaming until I went to get him because it was time for him to eat. Saturday night was again a normal night of sleeping. This morning he woke up around 7:30, I fed him and only allowed an hour of wake time and put him to bed. He cried for an hour (I have decided this is our max) I went in rocked him to sleep, put him down and he slept for an hour. we are now on our second "naptime" of screaming. I need help! Am I accomplishing anything by letting him cry for an hour before I rock him or am I just defeating the purpose? What am I doing wrong? What is the max time I should let him cry?

  98. Shelley and Eric
    February 20, 2013 / 9:15 PM

    My baby is 4 weeks old and it seems that no matter how long we let her CIO, she won't stop. At what point do you go get the baby. I put her down at 1:00 for her nap and at 2:15 she's still crying. Will she get the message if I have to go in to get her so she can eat? How will this effect the next feed/wake/nap cycle?

  99. Robyn
    March 1, 2013 / 6:46 PM

    Hi. My second son is 4 weeks. I did babywise with my first & it mostly worked well. My 4 week old from the start would stay awake much longer than I thought he should. I waited way longer than I should have to sleep train him. He likes to sleep in the swing. So, I started with CIO this morning. For his first nap it took him about an hour to fall asleep, not really crying though. Slept for 40 min. I calmed him down, then put him back for 30 min till feeding time and he cried that whole time. Then I fed him and I could tell he was tired so laid him down right after eating and he was in his bed for 2 hours, crying for about one. Then fell asleep for 20 min. I am wondering if it's better to just let him cry even if he doesn't sleep all day? He could be awake for hours. Thanks!

  100. Erin
    May 1, 2013 / 3:51 PM

    Please help! I started BW and CIO about a month ago. My baby had problems with formula and tummy troubles so I stopped and now started again 3 days ago. The time before he progressively cried less and less but had to stop. This time he cries longer than ever and most naps never falls asleep. I have to get him up to feed him. Yesterday for one nap I rocked him to sleep and held him all nap too because if he falls asleep in his crib he wakes up 30 min later on the dot. (This has been happening for weeks) I figure he is overly tired and am trying to get him caught up and still not giving him the wrong impression. He sleeps pretty good at night. He's 3 mo old and sleeps from 10:30-3:30 and 4-6 or 7. I've tried swaddling, unswaddling

  101. Erin
    May 1, 2013 / 3:58 PM

    …going to bed earlier (maybe not early enough?). He usually doesn't cry hard anymore but still whimpers and never goes to sleep. What am I doing wrong. I feel like I'm just making it worse. He sleeps 11 hrs a day if he's lucky. But seems very tired and not that happy. If I go on a mad try to soothe he gets very angry. I feel it doesn't help. Also if he does sleep and only for a couple minutes you said to get up and move on (he hates the swing) but aren't I supposed to keep the same schedule going? If I always get up and move on from there then the schedule will be different every day. I read somewhere that consistency will help progress? Please help. My head is spinning. I feel like so many things in BW contradict themselves…or maybe I'm just sleep deprived 🙂

  102. Kendall Watkins
    May 23, 2013 / 2:22 AM

    I have a question about napping. I'm trying to do Babywise with my 6 week old and nap time is a huge struggle right now. She cries for 20 min. and then finally falls asleep but then wakes up 20 min later screaming and will cry for another 20 min. I try to go in and pat her but she is so worked up she won't calm down. If I pick her up she calms down but as soon as I put her down again when she looks tired, she begins screaming for 20 min. This goes on the entire nap period and I am feeling so horrible letting her cry. I don't know what to do. I'm hoping you have had similar issues and can help. At bedtime she seems do well. She eats at 8 and then goes down really well and sleeps until about 11 and then I feed her and she's asleep until 3:00 or 4:00 and then eats again at 7:00 or 8:00 am. She is formula fed so I don't think its an issue of her not getting enough food. She is on an every 3 hour eating schedule during the day. She usually is awake for about an hour including her feeding time (although I struggle to keep her awake while eating). Do babies at this age really nap for 2 hours? My first would only ever sleep 45 minutes so I haven't been very successful with naps until they are a bit older (4-6 months). I'm hoping you can help me.

  103. bherw566
    May 29, 2013 / 10:44 PM

    My Janie is 8 weeks old. We started right out with the CIO and she cried sometimes for over an hour for her naps. I tried cutting back her wake time by 15 minutes and that seemed to fix the problem for a week or so. She's back to crying for a long time now. She doesn't seem to like to be swaddled. She cries and swallows air and then she cries because the air hurts. She sleeps on her tummy. She's just always done better that way. Naturally when I swaddle her I put her on her back. She does well at night it's just her naps that have gone haywire. I just recently tried the four S's. That seemed to work well for a few naps. Sometimes it works better than others. However, I have an active 2 year old and can't usually spend that much time putting her down. I know I'm probably confusing her with the different methods. I've been trying to swaddle for naps and let her sleep on her tummy still at night since she's been doing well with that. We did CIO with our son and he did well with it. I'm curious to know what you did with your fourth child. Did you do the four S's? Should I just swaddle her and let her CIO? Any advice would be great! This baby has been a real roller coaster compared to our last.

  104. Candace Tallisman
    August 17, 2013 / 7:41 PM

    Hi,My LO is 10wks and feel that we've established a pretty good night time routine and am able to put her in her crib drowsy and she will fall asleep on her own and does pretty good going back down at her night time feed. We are desperately struggling on our naps though! About half the time I can get her to actually fall asleep in her crib but she will only last a max of 20 minutes and as soon as she wakes up she is screaming and appears wide awake. I know she needs to be sleeping more than those 20 minutes but in the day but have been unsuccessful getting her to nap longer unless she's sleeping on me or in the stroller. With the CIO method would you suggest for her CIO time to be when she wakes after that brief stint?

  105. SammiK
    October 21, 2013 / 3:30 PM

    Hi! Thanks for your posts! I am just starting to look into BW with my 14 week old. She has recently gotten over most of her colic–HALLELUJAH!!! LolAnyways, my daughter is a cap napper, probably due to the fact that she was rocked so often with the colic. I usually can't get much more than 30-45 mins of naptime. I often rock her and lay her in her crib. If she is really over tired, I will hold her for her whole nap. She does not nap well in her swing except first thing in the morning, and then only 45 mins. I do swaddle her and she will occasionally take a pacifier, if that matters. In an effort to give you enough information, I'll overload you a bit. She's breastfed, sometimes nursing, sometimes pumped and bottle fed. She is STTN about 75% of the time, since about week 4ish. That has been AWESOME! Especially dealing with the colic. She also has a milk protien allergy, so we have been dealing with lots of painful gas. She has since gotten amazingly better now that I am off dairy. Again, dealing with that all day makes the STTN even more wonderful. We are blessed in that department.I should mention that I usually rock her til she's very sleepy and nurse her just before bed. Sometimes I put her in sleeping, sometimes she's just really drowsy. I am totally ok with CIO, assuming my baby is not in pain. Because we had so much going on with the gas from her allergy and colic, I always feel like I'm playing a guessing game on whether to let her CIO or not. Often I end up picking her up. I realize ever time that this is not fair to her and I need to "go big or go home" as you said. Anyways, Sorry for all of the possibly unnecessary info. My main question is, what happens if she wakes up after 30 mins? Do I let her cry? Pick her up and consider it her nap? It can be so frusterating, especially when she cries for 30 mins before falling asleep and then only sleeps for 30 mins.Any advice would be great. Thanks so much!

  106. Grace
    November 4, 2013 / 12:02 PM

    Valerie, I need your advice. Like Brayden, i started my baby girl jean lad. I tried at 7 weeks, , surprisingly she got it the next day but somehow regressed at week 8, and now at week 9 retraining her. Similar to Brayden I think she is the sort better left alone as when I go in n soothe her she calms down but after realizing I'm not picking her up, she gets real pissed.I have a problem because I put her down the moment she yawns n I see her eyebrows getting red n her hands fisted n she's starts losing focus. But after I place her in the crib 5 minutes late after a shirt cuddle/song n telling her it's nap time, she just lies in bed n continues to "play", amusing herself until she reaches the pony she realizes she can't get herself to sleep n then the crying jag starts. I cannot figure where am I going wrong.I have also been training her on her tummy n back to avoid that flip situation plus also sleeping on her tummy seems better for her breathing (she gets mucus from the crying).

  107. Becky Johnstone
    December 7, 2013 / 5:32 AM

    I hope you can help me Valerie so my son is now 13 weeks and we just started CIO on tuesday and it is now friday. He is so stubborn he usually just cries all the way into the next feeding (about 2 hours) So more often then not I am finding myself going in his room to pick him up and feed. Now that it is the 4th day I am starting to feel discouraged because I am not seeing much improvement.Obviously we aren't sticking to the right schedule of not picking him up but I really don't have a choice because I am not going to starve him. He usually will fall asleep while he is nursing and because I know he needs some sleep I never try an wake him up but instead just put him in his crib.I know you said with one of your kids that if she cried longer then an hour you would put her in the swing to sleep some but my son HATES the swing and will not fall asleep being rocked either. He only will bounce on the yoga ball. For this reason is why I knew I had to start CIO- I had absolutely no other options. I knew it was unrealistic to think I could bounce him to sleep ALL THE TIME plus he started to become energized by the bouncing and sometimes I would be at it for 2 hours trying to get him down. He will stay awake for 7 hrs if I let him. Do you have any suggestions?I also am finding I can't stick to the routine of eat play sleep because I am feeding him and then putting him down due to his crying for so long. Also he hates to eat in the mornings. Even if he wakes up at 3 am to eat and then wakes at 7am for the day he refuses to eat. I find him getting tired before he wants to eat so when I put him down he cries for 20 minutes and then I have to go feed him because he becomes hungry after crying! I feel like its a mess and I am starting to be driven crazy by him constantly crying- crazy as in I hate hearing my sweet boy cry and I just want to say screw it and pick him up but I have stuck to my guns and only pick him up to feed if thats what it turns into. He is 15 lbs and usually sleeps the first stretch of 4 hrs and then is up every 2 or 3 hrs after that so I need to find something to start getting him more sleep since I know he is able to at least do 7 straight.

  108. Ashley
    August 31, 2014 / 1:20 PM

    Hi BW mom! I keep asking around my mommy FB groups looking for this information but haven't been able to find real help yet.How is CIO for the middle of the night wakings different than CIO for bedtime? How should I plan / prepare? We probably don't need to do CIO for bedtime, but I would really love to end these MOTN paci replacements! At some point I hope to go cold turkey away from the paci, maybe with CIO? We just need a plan. We tried last night to just let her cry but I realized that it would be much less stressful if my husband and I had an agreed upon, educated plan to implement together. My daughter is 4.5 months and is currently sleeping fully swaddled in her rock n' play in her room. We can hear her in our room when she cries, even with the monitor off. I would like to acheive no swaddle and in her crib without the pacifier but we're taking baby steps and it's taking forever!!! Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated!!! THANKS!

    • Valerie Plowman
      September 3, 2014 / 1:15 AM

      I haven't done a paci, but this is what I would do. One thing to know is when you get the day right, nights follow. It is also easier to do CIO in day when you aren't trying to sleep and aren't as emotional. So I would start with naps. Put your baby down with the pacifier. If it gets spit out, don't reinsert it. The same rule would apply at night. You want the same rules for day and night sleep.

  109. The Video Chef
    October 15, 2014 / 10:27 PM

    Please help! My 5 month old had been sleeping often through the night or with just one waking around 4am. Three weeks ago we moved her from her bassinet into the crib and she has started waking up multiple times a night (every 3 hours) just like her day time schedule. She is exclusively breastfed and I had started nursing her but now I think it is habit and not hunger. How do I go about CIO in the middle of the night?

    • Valerie Plowman
      October 20, 2014 / 11:58 PM

      Do you think it is the bassinet move that did it? If so, I would try to recreat the bassinet feel in her crib as much as possible. I haven't ever done CIO in the night, but it is similar to the day. You can go in and comfort her and tell her it is time to sleep and then leave and CIO or you can just have her CIO. You could ask on the FB page today for hash it out Monday to see if anyone has wisdom to share on the experience.

  110. Jenny Engelby
    November 8, 2014 / 5:56 AM

    Hi Valerie, I desperately need your help!! My little guy sounds a lot like Brayden in that he hates sleep!! He is 8 weeks old and only sleeps on me after being rocked with his pacifier and even then it takes a couple hours sometimes. At night we cosleep because that's the only way to get him to sleep!! He is healthy and growing though so my pediatrician recommend CIO when I was ready and I am definitely ready!! So I read every post on CIO you've ever written numerous times and felt prepared for CIO but boy was I wrong!! I started with his first nap and continued for every nap and bedtime but he cried through each nap until it was time to feed him. He wasn't always crying sometimes he laid there and he even fell asleep a couple times but only for 15 minutes. I have no idea what is going on!! I know he is so tired!! I have him on a 2.5 schedule, and since he was crying the whole nap I would just feed, then burp, change diaper and back to bed. I was making sure he wasn't sleeping when I was nursing him and had a consistent routine. I'm really unsure what to do!! I think he is sleeping now after hours of crying at bedtime. Should I just stick to it? Should I give in and rock him to sleep if he hasn't fallen asleep after a certain time?? I desperately need this to work because I can't go back to having a baby on me 24/7!! What worked for. Brayden? Any help would be so so nice!! Thank you!!

  111. Ransom and Brooke Young
    January 29, 2015 / 9:51 AM

    Hello! Writing at 2:40am completely desperate for advise! My almost 5week old has been having awful nights for the past 3 weeks. He does great his first 3 naps and goes to sleep without crying at all. The 4th nap is hit and miss or whether he will sleep 45 min or take a full nap. Then we get to bedtime… Sometimes he will go down if done pretty much immediately after the 7/7:30 feed and other times he seems too stimulated and we end up having to rock him until he is completely out. But the real issue if after that- he will not sleep in his bassinet for more than 20 min without waking (no matter if he lay him down drowsy, wide awake or dead asleep) without waking and crying until I come get him. If I nurse him, he'll nurse for a few minutes, fall asleep and then wake once I put him back down. Most nights I am playing this game until 2 or 3 until he finally will sleep for a couple hours at a time. Does this sound like witching hour gone haywire or do you suggest crying it out from the get go of the night? I am so frustrated and tired.

    • Valerie Plowman
      February 3, 2015 / 12:55 AM

      That does sound tiring! It sounds like witching hour to me. Read through that info for advice and help. It will end!

  112. Jodi Goodman
    March 22, 2015 / 1:14 AM

    I need some advice or encouragement! Kate will be 9 weeks old tomorrow. We started with CIO yesterday afternoon after I'd rocked her back to sleep for her nap about 4 times. She is a pretty stubborn baby who never seemed to sleep as much as other newborns I know. I worked on putting her down drowsy, but it almost never worked. Anyway, long story short, we got to the point where she had no ability to put herself to sleep no matter what we did–even in a swing or paying close attention to keeping short wake times. She's been doing CIO since yesterday and it's BRUTAL. She cried through nearly every single nap today. She got about 30 minutes of continuous sleep during two naps and aside from that, she never soothed for more than a few minutes at a time. That meant she would cry for over an hour for every nap (with only a few times that she'd calm herself for only a couple minutes at a time.) Am I doing something wrong? Do I just need to stick with it and be strong?

  113. Sara DeAnn
    April 3, 2015 / 1:52 AM

    hi, my baby is 5 weeks 4days and we decided to start CIO. She usually goes down for naps fine but can fuss a little or if she wakes 15 minutes early she will fuss. my question is she is usually fussy between 5pm-10pm I feed at 6:30, 9:30 and 11 pm of I put her to bed at 8pm with CIO is this considered the witching hours? should we not be doing CIO? we really want our baby to learn how to self soothe. this is our 2nd day of CIO she has only had 2 long fussy periods both for bed time they are between 30-40 minutes all other fussy times are 15 minutes or less. this is our first child and we have done "babywise" /pdf since day 1 I am just looking for some advice…

  114. Danielle Kirchner
    September 14, 2015 / 10:56 PM

    Hi, your blog is very helpful! I have a few questions though. I've been struggling the past few weeks with getting my daughter to nap. 1) How will I know if I put her down too early? I feel like I'm putting my 7 week old down at the right time (45-50 min) because if we've kept her up longer then naps are terrible for the rest of the day (sounds like your Brayden). Twice last week I thought I had nailed it because she just laid in her crib quietly for about 15 min and then went to sleep. But then all of the sudden a switch flipped. She would lay there for about 5 minutes and then her legs would start kicking like crazy and she tries to break free of the swaddle and just screams bloody murder. I can see it in her eyes that she's just so tired, but she can cry for an entire nap! Then that just makes the other naps and night terrible because she's so overtired. She's also like your Brayden because if we go in and try to soothe after a certain amount of time, it just makes her more angry and she screams louder (if that's possible) and will NOT settle down. I've read your sleep hierachy so my number 1 goal is to get her to sleep at the appropriate times, but then if I take her out, she's so worked up that I can't even shush, rock, walk, wear, do anything to get her to sleep. She also won't fall asleep in the swing. Not to mention I'm in tears with her because I hate having her cry it out. Am I putting her down too early/too late? 2) I feel like it's a viscous cycle because once one nap is gone, then how do I need to adjust for the next? Put her down even earlier? I feel like she's already reached being overtired. 3) And then do I wake her after she's been sleeping for 2 hours if she needs to catch up? Or will that be a longer nap? 4) And she sounds like your sleepy girls too because once she does go down and falls into a deep sleep, when I go to wake her, it's so hard! She looks just like the pictures you posted! So I go from a super sleepy baby that I can hardly wake before eating, pretty sleepy during eating, sleepy after eating, finally get her to wake up, and then I can't get her back down again. Should I wait to feed her until she's fully awake and count the awake time from there? Sorry for so many questions. I feel like I've been trying to implement the routine/schedule for about 3 weeks now and I just end up more confused than when I started. 5) Lastly, does each day look pretty different for you? I start at the wake time, but depending on how that first nap goes, I try to adjust accordingly, or if she's hungry earlier, and I feel like not one day has looked the same. It kind of drives me nuts to not have anything consistent. I did read your consistent post by the way. I think it all has to do with getting these naps figured out. Thank you again for taking the time to answer these questions and for the helpful info on the blog!

  115. kbender
    January 26, 2016 / 8:58 PM

    Hi! I'm Katie and a first-time mom to a 4.5 week old baby girl. We've been roughly following the 3-hour schedule, but just this week started to really do it religiously. We also started letting her cry it out a few days ago. For the past two days, she's gone down for her naps with little to no crying. I usually have to wake her for her next feeding. But nighttime is a different story. She still wakes up every three hours at night, sometimes sooner. And she doesn't go down easily after I've fed her. So I have a few questions:1. Is it normal for a baby her age or s baby this early in the process to take good naps but sleep poorly at night?2. Should I feed her when she wakes at night or let her cry?3. Could her night issues be caused by too short wake times during the day? At this point I can barely get her to stay awake for longer than 30 or 40 minutes before she starts getting upset…

  116. SK
    June 24, 2016 / 12:50 AM

    Hi! I've been learning a lot from your site. Thank you for all the useful info! Would really appreciate some help with my 6+ month old baby's early wakening. We started cio with him a week ago. At first, it seemed to be going well. He was sleeping from 8 or 9pm to about 6 to 7am. However, after 3 days, he keeps waking up at 4 to 5am. Often, he'll cry, stop and then play for 40-60minutes before he starts crying again. Usually that will be around 6+am and we'll let him wake up to start the day. But he is clearly tired. He will look rather stoned but at the same time, he just can't seem to soothe himself back to sleep. We'll usually put him down for his first nap earlier so he doesn't get too tired. I'm quite confused and stressed about what to do as his total sleep seems to be decreasing and while I don't want to waste his 8 days of cio efforts, I feel that his early wake up time is unsustainable. Would really appreciate if you can offer me some insights on the following:1) he is still napping ok. Between 3-5 hours in the day but because he's up so much earlier, his bedtime sleep is between 7-9 hours. Is over fatigue causing him to wake up early? But when I put him down for bedtime earlier, he just cries longer… 2) he has been doing 1-2hour naps. But he has woken up after 40-50 minutes for one nap on day 7 and 8 respectively. I've resorted to extending his naps with carrying and patting when he wakes up on the 8th day, to make sure he is getting sufficient sleep. This is to fit in with the sleep begets sleep principle u mentioned. But is this inconsistency a bad thing? (Vs consistent cio for naps and bedtime) 3) I nursed him on the 8th morning when he woke up at 5am. Though he fell asleep at the boob, he woke up once I put him down. I tried this 2-3 times and eventually when I put him down in the cot at 6, he woke up for good. If I try bringing him to our bed to nurse in the hopes Tt he can sleep after nursing, is this again inconsistent? Will it waste all the cio? 4) how do we measure success of cio? He was crying only a few minutes before naps and bedtime for a few days, but he'll also hav naps and bedtimes where he'll also cry for 30-50minutes, such as on the 6th and 8th night.Is this the extinction burst? Will it ever come to a pt where he'll consistently only cry a few minutes or not at all? Facing him cry so often 8 days in a row is quite distressing. I feel he has made progress, in that he can self soothe to sleep. So should I continue cio and hope things get better? If I were to modify the cio, like I have done on the 8th day, am I confusing him instead? Thanks much in advance for your help! Really appreciate some guidance!!

  117. Brittni Gazendam
    October 1, 2016 / 3:54 PM

    Hi!We have a 3 month old baby girl and she's been on a babywise schedule since she was born. She was doing great and sleeping through the night at around 7 weeks, but has just recently started having problems. She's pretty addicted to her soother- I don't think she's ever gone to sleep without it, which I realize is definitely a sleep prop- and she never falls asleep on her back. I know tummy sleeping isn't recommended, but since week 1 we'd try to put her down on her back and as soon as we flipped her over she would fall asleep no problem. She'd been going down for naps and bedtime really well (though we sometimes had to re-insert the soother a couple times each nap or before she was really down for bedtime) but since she learned she could flip from her tummy to her back, she started flipping over, losing her soother and then doesn't seem to be able to fall asleep. I want to cut her soother habit and train her to be able to sleep on her back! Is that a reasonable goal? Since yesterday I've been trying to let her CIO at naps and bedtime. I put her down on her tummy, with her soother and get her settled (but not asleep) and then walk away. For some naps, she goes right to sleep, but for most she will flip over and then just cry and cry and cry. I've been letting her cry for 45 minutes and then I go in, flip her over and put her soother in and she falls asleep immediately. She's also been waking up during the night once or twice. (which she hasn't done since she was really little) Before, we would just put her soother back in and she'd go back to sleep, but it's not working anymore. We let her CIO for a while, then did the same thing-flip her over, soother back in, and she goes right to sleep. I'm at a loss! I want her to be able to fall asleep without the soother on her back but she has yet to do so! I really don't feel comfortable letting her cry for more than 45 minutes- especially when I don't see that theres any improvement! She seems to sleep much better after she's cried for a while, but its only after we go in to put her soother back in and flip her over. I realize its going to be hard….but does it sound like its even working? Should I be holding out a little longer before I flip her over? I would REALLY appreciate some advice!

  118. DatBabysDaddy
    October 10, 2017 / 1:47 AM

    We started cry it out with our little guy about 3 weeks ago (he is now 8 weeks old). It took quite awhile, and we are new parents so there were a lot of learning moments, but we are on the other side now and it has been successful.I'm writing with a question of concern, however… we use a camera to see how our little guy reacts as he is self-soothing. And now that he is on the other side of crying things out, when we set him down, he often sits there for 40-ish minutes, completely awake, but content, and then falls asleep.During this self-soothe time, he is well-fed, he has hit his optimal wake-time (and showed sleep queues), he is well-swaddled, and we have a very distinct sleepy routine. My question is: is this common? For a cry it out baby to sit there awake for 40-ish minutes before sleeping during a lot of naps?Second: we don't use any sort of visual stimulation while he's falling asleep (like a "mobile" with dangly colorful things)… is this a problem? He is sitting there alert and awake, but with nothing specific to focus on, and I've started to wonder if that's something vital?Any other thoughts are always welcome and appreciated. Many thanks for this blog and for all the help from the community which has supported us with our first kiddo.Sincerely,Dad

  119. Valerie Plowman
    October 10, 2017 / 4:27 PM

    Hello,It isn't common to take 40 minutes to fall asleep. Ideally you would want it 20 minutes or less.This might be happening simply because he is still working out how to fall asleep on his own. So it might be something you wait another couple of weeks on before you make any adjustments. Usually if they take a long time to fall asleep, but are content, then I say add 5 minutes of waketime length and see if that fixes it. No, it isn't vital to have something visual. I never did with my kids. I might wait a week or two to be sure he has his self-soothing skills down well, but if you feel like something is really off, give another five minutes before putting him down and see what happens.

Leave a Reply