The Great CIO Debate

I am certainly not opening this post up for a debate, however, I did want to post a link from a blog that I read because to anyone who may read my blog and may find themselves in the place of sleep deprivation due to a baby (or babies!) who do not sleep through the night, I hope what this person wrote will bring you encouragement!

Meet Holly!

After a fertility treatment she found out she was expecting TRIPLET girls!

They just celebrated their first birthday on December 23rd.

The girls are doing FABULOUS, except that they were NOT sleeping through the night. Holly was getting up sometimes FIFTEEN times a night to go in and give bottles to the girls!

Talk about exhausting.

She was against CIO, at first. She had read the research about how CIO can “damage the parent/child relationship”.

But then she talked to a trusted friend who explained that giving your child the gift of sleep DOES NOT harm them!

Holly realized her girls were playing her. They didn’t need those bottles. It was habit. A bad habit that was making babies and mommy not get the sleep they needed every night!

Holly realized sometimes as moms we’ve got to do something that isn’t “pleasant”.

I LOVE her post about her experience with letting her girls CIO to learn to sleep through the night.

She explicitly explains her thought process:what she tried to get the girls to sleep that didn’t work, the issues in her own mind that were holding her back from teaching her girls to sleep, what motivated her to let her girls CIO, how she did it (she explains step by step) and the final results, which are astounding!!

These were her final words on her post:

I must say, I was completely and utterly in disbelief, totally against doing anything that might, by research accounts, "harm my baby" but let me tell you, I HAVE MY LIFE BACK and my children are NOT harmed the least bit! This is the most wonderful gift I have been given! I can’t tell you how lucky I feel and how IT PROVES that I was the one HOLDING THEM BACK. I swore I would never do that and I was the one making this happen, not them. I feel bad for that. They wanted to sleep through the night, and I wasn’t giving them the tools to be able to do so.

Here is the link to Holly’s CIO post.

As far as my blog, feel free to leave your positive experiences with CIO. Negativity on the CIO Debate is not welcome here. There are many other places for you to go and say your two cents on the matter. This is just not the place!

This post is simply meant to encourage anyone who may be on the fence about doing CIO. CIO is certainly not for every family. You have to do what is best for yours.

I hope Holly’s post will help you see that you will not “damage your child for life” if CIO is done simply to teach your baby/toddler to fall asleep and stay asleep.

CIO can be done responsibly and Holly’s story is a wonderful example!!

4 thoughts on “The Great CIO Debate

  1. Well…you know me…I am a supporter of BW and do believe that CIO, done responsibly and compassionately, is totally fine. Doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt my heart when I have to do it though…who really wants to hear their baby cry? For our son…it totally worked. We got really lucky and there was no CIO at all for the initial sleep training because we followed the BW method of putting him in his own bed drowsy from a very young age…he just learned to work it out and slept great from 11 weeks …UNTIL the TEETH!!! At 9 months he went to daycare for th e1st time and also got his first teeth so his beautiful schedule got all messed up. Sadly…this co-inciced with my return to work…so after 7 months of great sleep and thinking going back to work would be a piece of cake…I was now sleep deprived and dragging every day. Once that tooth popped thru and I knew there was not a physical problem anymore…it was time to get serious….We had to do the CIO. Believe me…it was harder on us than him. The first nigh we did the intervals of checking/soothing 5 min – 10 min – 15 min etc. We were up for a little over an hour before he settled. The next nigh…just once …and the third night…not at all. He did great and didn’t seem harmed or mad at me at all. Actually…he started having better days at daycare with more consistent napping than when he was not sleeping well. So…Yes…I am a fan.
    Fast forward to baby #2…not the same child…not the same situation and she is not one that does well with CIO…period. She was plagued with ear infections from 4 months to 7 months and then got tubes….after that she got every single cold, virus and childhood illness you can imagine from daycare and her older brother. AND…she suffered from a minor siezure disorder from 6 months to 12 months (thank goodness she seems to have outgrown it)….so it was just not WISE (the key word in the BW title)…to stress her little system out with CIO. She is now 14 months and seems to be doing much better on all these accounts…so we are going to shoot for some BW intervention soon. She is awesome about bedtime…she has her bottle, she cuddles with me for a moment and then she wants in her bed. And she has slept through the night on several occasions and has even woken up, protested a bit and put herself back to sleep several times….but she just got transitioned to the Toddler room at daycare and down to 1 nap a day…so she is struggling with that change and it is affecting her night time sleep. I have a plan to give it one more month (and just a bit further out of cold and flu season) and then we are going to pick our 3 nights where daddy and big brother go camping in our RV out back and mommy institutes sleep training!!!! I will keep you posted…..but this is just an example of how someone who believes in the power of the CIO also has the wisdom to recognize when it is not a good idea. It is not a “one size fits all” kind of method.

    Once again Elaine…thank you for sharing and always putting such thought into your posts, your parenthood and your topics to share with us.


  2. Well … I let Elaine CIO when she was 9 months old or so. I had no help from anyone on how to teach her to sleep! I just knew I could not survive getting up many times during the night SO one night I just let her CIO…. it took 45 terrible (for Me) minutes but I never had another problem and she always was a great sleeper after that and still is.(I don’t believe I did it correctly but even then, it turned out ok.) We have a very close, wonderful relationship. (By the way, I could also say this about her brother!)

  3. I am a huge fan of BW and CIO. I haven’t really had to let my girls CIO too much because we started off with babywise and them sleeping in their cribs in their rooms right away. But I just feel so bad for people that think it’s wrong to CIO because they are missing so much sleep. Life is so much easier with good sleep…for both babies and mamas!!:)

  4. Thank you for featuring me! I hope it gives some strength to anyone willing to let CIO possible work! It’s not for everyone, but it is for some, and for some, it has WORKED like magic! 🙂

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