How To Get A Baby To Sleep In A Crib
Sleep Problems May Occur When…
• You feel anxious
• You feel isolated
• You have postnatal depression
• You hadn’t planned this baby
• You don’t love this baby
• You feel as though you are abandoning your baby
• You haven’t been able to grieve for a loss, maybe even a loss that is unconnected to the baby
• Your baby seems to need you to be there
• You have marital problems, or there is a lot of tension in your home
• Something from your childhood still bothers you
• You have been sexually abused
• You work outside the house during the day and feel that your baby is missing some important closeness which makes night-time separations harder to bear
• You feel that you ought to pick up your baby every time he cries, though sometimes you don’t feel like it
• Every time you leave him he cries, and you can’t bear to hear him cry
Most sleeping problems do not hide deeper problems, but where they do, a little bit of soul-searching and a lot of honest and open discussion may help. Talk to someone you trust. And be kind to yourself; ambiguity and confusion are often part of the journey to the most rewarding of relationships.
Some parents find that talking with a child psychotherapist helps. Child psychotherapists understand that relationships can affect sleep and that sleep disturbances can sometimes arise from unreconciled losses in the parents lives. Sleep is a form of separation – a temporary loss – and can be a powerful reminder of other losses or separations which still affect us. Such reminders can hamper your ability to let your baby go. (If you would like to find out more about brief psychotherapeutic therapy for sleep problems see the resources section on page 149.) You neither need to hang on to your baby nor push him away. Sleep becomes an example of how you can love him and let him go.
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