Part of beginning my work with families is to work out the reasons why they may want to hire me.
Being exhausted, all though is often why I am contacted is truly a good action step forward it is not always the number 1 reason why.
Before I begin ANY sleep work I find out the main goals and to reassure them that their child is “not broken” and that any sleep issue can ultimately “be fixed”.
- You are unhappy with your child’s sleep habits.
No matter how many people you talk to, if you are happy with how your child sleeps, day and night then you AINT got a problem. Reasons being unless you think there is a problem, you won’t be able to stay consistent with any plan a sleep consultant sets up for you!
2. You have “tried everything”.
I guess I’m a bit like Yoda in this conversation-
Many parent’s tackle sleep training on their own or implement “wait it out method” (insert 2-4 years of sleep deprivation). My take? If NOTHING has worked- time to enlist a individualized sleep plan. It is time to “do” not “try”.
3. You and your partner keep arguing over the approach you implement.
Its time to stop the good cop bad cop method. It frustrates your child as well as each other. It is really annoying to start the good cop (dad) at bedtime, then at 3am turn into bad cop (mum). I create a sleep plan that both parent’s feel comfortable with, and lead you step by step forward.
4. Your pediatrician suggests you should get help OR try Cry It Out.
Most parent’s don’t realize that their Pediatrician, GP or Child Health Nurse are actually NOT trained child sleep specialists. Yes they are trained specialists BUT not in sleep. Often their training is less than 6 hours in their entire degree! I have worked with ALL of these specialists and they have no idea on healthy sleep habits, foundations, and the myriad of underlying influences on sleep stealers! And they come to me because they don’t want to do the behavioral method Cry It Out. #walkthewalk
5. You are starting to resent your baby or your current sleep situation- the volcano approach.
Yup in the first 12 months after birth we lose up to 950 hrs of sleep ( 44 days in total). Some of us cope well, others of us don’t. Nothing can prepare us for the amount of time our child requires from us. Our mental health is paramount for health and happiness. Many families are scared to contact me, fearful of spending money in case “it doesn’t work”. Well it won’t if you are fearful, just leave the volcano simmering and smoking… it will if you are ready to take action before you erupt, when those teeny tiny feelings of resentment start to crop up.
Child sleep can be complicated and confusing to parents. The longer I work as a Holistic Sleep Specialist I find so much more to consider. An individualized assessment and plan for your family is the best approach to short term and long term success.