Sleep theory spectrum I

Hayden is eight months old today! Now, if only he’d sleep through the night.

When you have a baby, sleep becomes a big issue in your life. I’ve read a lot about it, though very little at 2 AM.

In that reading, I’ve found a spectrum of theories on babies’ sleep. At one end of the spectrum comes the theories where the onus is put on the mom: “You have to do something about” to “You should do something about it: to “You can do something about it.”

At the other end sounds like the laments of the been-there-done-that-failed-miserably crowd, starting with “You can’t do anything about it.” From there, the theories become more vehement: “You shouldn’t do anything about it” to the “He’ll grow out of it . . . eventually . . . or maybe not . . . just let him be him” to the downright militant “HOW DARE YOU EVEN THINK ABOUT CHANGING SOMETHING ABOUT YOUR SWEET, PERFECT ANGEL FOR YOUR SELFISH PHYSICAL ‘NEEDS’ AND/OR CONVENIENCE?!?!?”

I think a lot of the proponents of that last group don’t understand that there can be a difference between child-led nurturing and child-centered nurturing. The people on the extreme “child-led” side seem to think that everyone else ascribes to parent-centered parenting: it’s all about the parents’ convenience and comfort. But I say that there are four different concepts that we’re talking about here—and they’re not mutually exclusive.

I’ll tell you about my four concepts tomorrow.

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