What is Sleep Education?
Have you arrived in the right place? You have if:
- You KNOW sleep training is not for you but you also do not want to just suffer through it either
- You want to follow your child’s cues and be respectful and answer to their needs
- You want to find balance between respecting your child’s every need and making sure you are also valued and cared for in the process
- You may have been wary of considering working with a sleep support person in the first place as you do not want anything imposed on your child
- You aren’t looking for a quick fix and want to help nurture a true love for sleep, and help your child know that sleep is a safe place to go and a safe place to remain
- You are open to the idea that at such a young age, we shouldn’t consider training a human to do an act such as sleeping without our support when they rely on us for every single other act (feeding, diapering, hygiene, movement, language acquisition etc.)
- Though difficult at times, you are open to the idea that parenting doesn’t end at sundown, that nighttime parenting is equally as important as daytime parenting
- You want to cope and make it all easier in the realm of all of the above!
If this is you, welcome!!
I hope this list does not overwhelm you, but I suppose if you have continued on, you have found the right place!
Every sleep support program Intuition Parenting offers is TRULY gentle, the opposite of sleep training, does not promote any quick-fixes/training/crying-it-out of any sort, and is completely respectful of you and baby. The only guarantee I will make you (as opposed to a fix in a certain number of days for example) is that what I support as a Sleep Educator is completely gentle and guided by your family’s values.
Why do we need sleep education?
I find that sleep is one of the biggest topics everyone seems to ask and care about. You will be asked, waiting in line at the grocery store, “oh how sweet, is he sleeping through the night for you??” as soon as the baby is a few months old!
A “good baby” has somehow become synonymous with a baby who sleeps well, for long periods of time, falls asleep easily and/or without needing support. We also tend to see many TV shows and movies that portray very young babies being plopped into cribs, needing no support whatsoever to fall asleep, and sleeping for lengthy periods of time. Everything around us perpetuates a misled expectation for infant sleep, and then in our difficult early weeks and months, constantly being asked about it in a very leading manner and never really having the answer the person seems to be seeking, leaves parents wondering what they are doing wrong and why their baby isn’t fitting this apparent norm. Let that snowball by then being too shy to even admit your true family sleep status to anyone, even your MD perhaps, and that leaves us all having no clue what normal infant sleep behaviour looks like.
It is incredible that resetting false expectations often seems to be half the battle, and when true infant sleep norms are understood, we breathe a sigh of relief that nothing is wrong and that we aren’t breaking our babies! Then what is left are many ways to help everyone cope better with the current state of sleep and to gently nudge things in the direction we hope to move towards for the entire family.
As a Certified Infant Sleep Educator, I do not use the word sleep training, the belief is not held that these tiny humans need to be trained to sleep properly. The manner in which infants sleep is the way it is for very specific evolutionary and biological safety reasons. We learn to trust the infant rather than try to train them to meet skewed expectations. It is truly a spectacular, honest, and relieving way of looking at sleep that releases us from attempting to meet unreasonable expectations and rather really enjoy our infants and follow their cues. We can be there for them and help sleep, and all of its associations can be positive experiences, as we parent our kids to sleep just as we parent them through every other function in their early life. There are various age-appropriate tactics that can be applied in a loving, supportive, and respectful manner, to help our children fall asleep.
What will we cover together?
A developmental approach is taken to support optimal bonding and growth which is very different from the behaviourist approach that many sleep trainers take. We will cover:
- The science behind infant/maternal sleep and with this information, you will be offered the tools needed to create balance around those facts
- The biological sleep needs of infants through toddlers, and the developmental milestones that wreak havoc on their sleep patterns
- Healthy and safe sleep habits for the entire family
- A Personalized Sleep Strategy for you to achieve your family sleep goals
Like in all aspects of Intuition Parenting Support Services, what this offers is the space for you as parents to follow your instincts and intuition when it comes to your new baby.