About Alyson

Alyson has been blogging parenting advice for over 15 years. She has been a panelist at BlogWest, Blissdom, #140NYC and more. Her content appears on sites across Canada and the US, but you can read all her own blog posts right here.

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7 Responses to “My Favorite Book on Sleep Training”

  1. Yonge Charlotte

    To your theory on the subject of getting children to sleep I suggest you add some concrete information. You could start by reading “touching: the human signifigance of the skin” by Ashley Montagu. There you will find real scientific literature on what happens to small chidren when they are left to cry alone. Your theories are dangerous to us as a society. I cant believe you actually recommend parents to ignore their children’s distress in the name of social behaviour. Your theory and methods date back to the 19th century when Luthor Holt recommended banishing rocking cradles and rocking small children in arms because it gave them bad habits. For concrete information from a serious educated background on the subject see http://www.attachmentparentingdoctor.com/
    Most sincerely
    Charlotte Yonge

  2. Alyson Schafer

    Hello Charlotte,
    Thanks for taking time to visit my site and for posting a comment. I try to write my posts to be about 400 – 500 words each since that is all the time and attention people give these things in one read. I have however posted hundreds of articles on my site and if taken in their totality, I think there would be less of a misunderstanding on my views on sleep training. My psychotherapy training is Adlerian. Alfred Adler has the most humanistic and respectful theory of humans and their need for connection with one another. He also stresses the importance of co-operation.
    Its hard to separate a human “want” versus a human “need”. I would give a child food ( a need) but not necessarily a cookie ( a want) if they asked for before dinnertime. I feel the same about children at a certain age demanding to sleep in their parents room or have their parents sleep with them.
    Somehow readers of my post think I am asking them to let their infants cry and its been a misunderstand I have tried to correct through other posts – but as I say, people seem to read one post, leave me a hurtful note and leave. 🙁
    I appreciated your note was respectful disagreement and that you shared resources etc… so thank you for engaging in the discussion. That’s the beauty of the web, very co-operative!

  3. Heather

    I found this book to be of little use ….interesting to read however I should have read it before I needed it I think it might have helped….a good read for a future parent…not one with a sleep problem at hand.

  4. Alyson Schafer

    Thanks for sharing that Heather. Did you have another book that was more helpful you’d be willing to share the title of with other parents in the same boat? People love having resources!

  5. Mira

    I read this book in the first few months after my daughter’s birth and followed Dr. Weissbluth’s methods of following sleep cues. Although I did not always like his tone, this plan worked very well for us. My daughter is now 9 months old and started sleeping through the night around 6 months. We did a bit of crying it out, but it was minimal, I think because we kept sleep routines very consistent. The tone of the book can be a bit judgemental, but his systems work and my daughter is a very happy, confident little girl who gets lots of cuddles and love, despite sleeping in her crib alone and occasionally crying before she falls completely asleep. 🙂

  6. Mary

    I found No-Cry Sleep Solution to have some good suggestions for sleep other than CIO. It deals with much of the science of HSHHC (e.g. circadian rhythms, routines, sleep times, etc) but with a kinder, gentler approach.

    Healthy Sleep Habits has conflicting information and includes ridiculous suggestions like giving your baby juice in a bottle (totally nutritionally inappropriate). It also acknowledges that baby may still need feedings up to 9 months of age, but contains anecdotes of parents who let their babes CIO through night feeds at 4 or 5 months old. It warns that post-colic babies might have difficulty with CIO, but offers no suggestions other than “maybe try it a little later.” Finally, it needs a good editor, as it is poorly organized.

    We tried Healthy Sleep Habits consistently for 10 days and got nowhere. They were the worst 10 days of our sleep life. She would cry for HOURS just to get her down for naps. We are back to co-sleeping during the night so I have more energy to deal with her sleep issues during the day. We are working on reducing the sucking-to-sleep reflex (The Pantley Gentle Pull-Out) and reinforcing our bedtime ritual. Our girl is still consolidating her daytime naps, so we are watching those too. Our sleep is still terrible, but it is better than before and mum and baby are no longer angry at each other all the time.

  7. Jody Haynes

    I love this book. It’s really helpful. My husband and I finally get a relief.


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