Crying it out never worked for us

I never attempted the CIO method with my son and it never actually worked with my daughter. This brings us to two kids: one seven and one four, who need their parents in order to fall asleep. Both kids are not great sleepers (surprise!) and they don’t like to sleep alone.

We still lay down with them every night. Read a story, make one up, and cuddle before they fall asleep. Some days this is annoying. I sometimes wish that they would just go to sleep without us.

But mostly, I enjoy the cuddles. Recently our routine has changed. My oldest will read in his room alone while I snuggle up with my daughter on her rocky road to dream land. Once she’s asleep, it’s lights out for big brother and I cuddle with him before he drifts off.

Once the lights are off, he tells me EVERYTHING about his day. He asks me questions. We talk about his relationships with other kids in his school. He tells me secrets. I’m not sharing them with you. I pinky promised.

If I didn’t snuggle with my boy before bed, when would we talk about all of this important stuff? We live busy lives. Between work, the kids activities and parenting two kids at different ages and stages there isn’t a lot of time for heart to heart conversations. Our family has dinner together every night and we do our best to talk about our days, but it’s not quite the same.

While some may judge that I am still helping my kids to sleep and while I sometimes think that I could be working or washing dishes, ultimately I am happy that this is our bedtime routine. I cherish the time when the lights are out and I love that my son trusts me to share his deepest and darkest.

In a world where there is so much bullying happening in schools, I’m happy to keep the lines of communication open with my children. Even if the talks all happen in the dark.

One day my son may not want me in his room and until then I pinky promise that his parents love to snuggle with him every night.

  • thisistheplace

    we tried CIO and it didn’t work. HOWEVER, now, some nights, H cries and we may let him or we may not – we, as his parents can judge his whimpers for serious or just attention grabbing. we always talk, we often go upstairs but he knows he’s loved and is a happy as pie little boy. 

  • Ggrlswearthongs

    My daughter always fell asleep on her own and never was a cuddler. My son was a totally different story. As a baby I could never put him down. One time I tried the CIO way and he flipped himself out of his crib before he could even walk and crawled out his bedroom door..He’s 9 now and still likes to make excuses to kick one of us out of our bed so he can sleep with the other.

  • Chantalthewriter

    I hear you. My fear is the day I can’t be there bc of work or whatever. We like routine but we break it too. Regularly. Just to make sure we can. Weird, right?

  • Grace

    I am with you on this one. My son is now 5 and either my husband and I (or both) are there with him at bedtime to help him “shut down the channels in his brain” (my son’s words).

  • SIL Helen

    Controlled crying worked for Son 2 and for the moment he goes to sleep on his own, whereas son 1, likes to have his story, likes to cuddle up, chat and then fall asleep. I too really enjoy this time with him, at nearly 3 there is going to be a time when he doesn’t want to cuddle mummy, I am not looking forward to that moment in fact I wish son 2 would join us!!

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