Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Sleep Training...

We've started it in the Feierbach household.  If you've been following my blog or know me, you are aware that Ephraim has sleep troubles.  He keeps going through regressions and then he'll get a little better and then he'll get worse than he was before and on and on.

Last week, our pediatrician recommended a form of sleep training.  It was the first method I've heard that made me go, "I think we could actually do that" even with all of Ephraim's history, fears, and anxieties.  Most methods require letting kids just cry it out, and while this works for many families, we just didn't feel okay about using it with a boy who has gone through the things Ephraim has gone through.  But here's the method our pediatrician recommended and while you do let your child cry, you continue to go back in and reassure him you're still there, which we like.

Method:  When he wakes up in the middle of the night, you wait 5 minutes.  Then go in to his room, touch him, talk to him, let him know you haven't abandoned him.  You stay in there for 2-3 minutes, then leave.  Even if he cries, you stay out for 7 minutes, then go back in, but this time you only stay in for 1 minute.  This continues with leaving for 9 minutes, going in for 1 minute, leaving for 10 minutes, going in for 1 minute, etc.  Until finally he puts himself to sleep.

Our pediatrician told us it will only get harder to teach him to put himself back to sleep the longer we wait to start this process.  And with a toddler who often wakes up 6-8 times in one night, we NEED him to put himself back to sleep.

So we started this process last weekend, and so far it's not really getting any better.  We are up with him between 1 and 1 1/2 hours each night.  As I listen to him to cry while I wait to go back in, I have to continually re-justify this method to myself!  It seems like an okay method for Ephraim because you do keep going back in to assure him you are there, you haven't left, he is not alone.  It's just teaching him that he can and needs to put himself back to sleep.

Needless to say, we are EXHAUSTED!  He is exhausted.  And our days right now are just one big control battle.  I think he feels like he's losing all control at night so he wants to be in complete control during the day.  He's also super clingy during the day right now.

So pray for us.  Pray that we have the strength and energy to get through this, that it works, and that Ephraim will be at peace and will know that he does not have to worry about us abandoning him.


Stephanie said...

Oh goodness, I can only imagine how exhausting this is but this method sounds much better for children with attachment or abandonment issues. Hope it gets better, praying for you guys!

Jimmy & Kristi said...

Both of our sons had trouble at one point sleeping at night and I completely understand how exhausted you are. I have been there and it will get better just stay consistent. I am praying for you guys!

Meg Fletcher said...

Hey I follow this blog "Flower Patch Farmgirl" and she is a Christian and she has 3 adopted children from 3 different countries (all 5 and under) I thought you would really connect with her! I'm sure they've gone through the same things and she is really nice! this is the site:

Venessa said...

Definitely saying a prayer for you and for your little guy too! Hang in there! Thanks for the sweet comment too:)

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