When will my baby sleep through the night? - Ella





I love this question because it's not really a question, it's a plea. A silent prayer sent up by millions of parents across the globe. I've asked it many times myself. I remember saying to my husband, in complete earnestness, 'If he just slept through the night, I could survive'. So let me start by saying, you're not alone. I know you feel alone at 3am with only 'Insanity' infomercials for company but we're here for you. You need to know that because what I say next might not be what you want to hear right now. 

My friend recently asked me, her beautiful, inquisitive baby wriggling in her ams, 'When she's on solids she'll sleep right?' I made a noncommital noise and avoided eye contact because the truth is she could liquidise an eight course taster menu and be woken up all night. You want me to say he will sleep at twelve weeks or at four months (the magical four months) or at six months, definitely six months! This was my mantra. I practically counted the days, convinced that on the eve of his half anniversary he would drift into a peaceful eight hour slumber. Spoiler: He did not.

Imagine I had a crystal ball. I did once work as a psychic so I'm qualified. I look into your future and I have the answer to your question and here it is: Never. Yes, I'm afraid you have one of the few babies in the UK that will never let you have uninterrupted sleep. Ever. You will be up with him every night until he takes his last GCSE exam. If I told you that, and you believed it to be true, what would you do? 

Okay, you'd cry silently for a few minutes but after that you'd get a plan together, you'd have to. You'd give up ironing and nap every day. You'd dedicate Saturdays to resting. You'd forget about cooking and buy ready meals. You'd meditate. You'd stop staying up drinking gin. You'd go to bed at 6pm. You'd ask a friend to help. You'd pay a friend to help. You'd stop putting ridiculous expectations on yourself. So do that stuff now.


Look after yourself, don't wait for your baby to look after you. He's trying to figure the world out; he can't take on your problems! Do this and one day sooner than you think, you'll be awake all night listening to his little snores and wondering what to do with yourself. 

And wanna hear something crazy? I miss those late night calls. When it was just him and me and no one else would do. At 3am you're not a broken women, you're not even a mummy - you're a superhero! So even now on the occasional night that he doesn't make it through, I love that I get to run in, stroke his damp little face and think, yeah, still got it. 


20 comments

  1. Such a beautiful post. I have three and my eldest (almost six) doesn't sleep well, so this has a whole new meaning in our house... I can see how you'd miss those baby days/nights though #SWM

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  2. Thank you. You really don't know how it will go do you? You just have to be open to whatever your kids want to teach you. Your little man is lucky to have you there to help him :) x

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  3. This is such a lovely take on the sleep "issue" #sharewithme

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  4. I love this post. Just makes me feel all warm inside. I'm quite lucky my girly sleeps but when she does wake a nice cuddle in bed is lovely. I miss it sometimes. Crazy lady...maybe I need another one? x #sharewithme

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    1. Ooooh! Maybe so :) I miss my cuddles in bed, he's quite a violent sleeper x

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  5. Isn't it funny how when you've 'been there and done it' you can look back on those days and actually miss it? I remember those desperate please myself 15 years ago now. Great advice though :)

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    1. Miss it but also appreciate not having it! Funny old game parenthood x

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  6. When I was sitting alone here at home and my son started school, I was thinking why time flew so fast! Why am i alone now when I want my baby to be with me still. You are right when you are there it seems like eternity for the baby to grow up but when they grow up youd wish they are as little as they were before. #sharewithme

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    1. Don't! He can't leave me! *cough* sorry x

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  7. It is always reassuring to see that I am not alone. They are not babies for long so we should just enjoy them.. day .... and night! It does get tough at times though. 4am I am at my weakest. Glad to see they do make it through eventually. I don't think my bed is big enough for a 16 year old!
    #sharewithme

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    1. Don't let anyone tell you they're too old for cosleeping! Thanks for your comment x

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  8. My first child slept through the night from six weeks, yet my second woke at night til he was two and half years!! I think it would have been a lot easier if it had been the other way around!

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  9. Ha hA! You were lulled into a false sense of security. Thanks for sharing x

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  10. It really is a catch 22 isn't it? We want sleep than we miss those nightly cuddles where it's just you and baby together in the darkness.Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

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  11. I want everything! Oh dear this is how women get a bad name. Thanks for stopping by x

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  12. You're totally right! We have to enjoy those sleepless nights as it goes by way too fast. Sure it's tough when you end up looking like a zombie, but those cuddles are worth everything! We always bed shared until Lucas was 9 months, and even then he wasn't sleeping through the night. I was convinced he hated sleep lol. We're co sleeping now, his cot is in our room, and I used to get a lot of 'how can you hug your baby to sleep?' 'You'll be doing that until he's 4' but guess what?! He let me know that he wanted his own space, and I was kinda sad about that! No one can force a baby to do anything..we just have to follow their lead, and eventually, they'll let us know when they are ready for the next step. It does get better! x

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    1. Thanks for your lovely comment. I do wonder where people are coming from! If you were sharing a bed at 4 and everyone was happy with that, would that be so bad? Someone once said of cosleeping to me, 'Do you not want to be close to your partner at night? It's natural to want to sleep with someone we love and trust.' I don't actually want to sleep next to my partner cause he snores like a T.Rex but I get the sentiment.

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  13. I loved every word of this. As the mom of a terrible sleeper you are D-O-N-E with life, with kids, with being happy about anything ever again. And then they finally do sleep through the night and you're like, "Oh, well that wasn't so bad!" Or maybe that's just me purposely blocking out reality.

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    1. Oh you made me laugh with this comment. The I will never know happiness again feeling was strong! There is definitely a lot I've tucked away in a dark corner of my mind!

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