When I was about to become a Dad, lots of people would say 'Are you ready for the lack of sleep?', I would laugh it off and think I've stayed out till 4.00 a.m., I'm sure I can handle missing a few hours. I was wrong, so WRONG! The lack of sleep you endure as a parent is indescribable, especially to someone without children.
Over the years I have tried many things to help my children sleep; I've probably googled and tried every technique. My advice to new parents is to just do what works for you and don't believe all the hype of some 'sleep' experts.
Here are a few of things I have tried in my never-ending battle to get my children to sleep:
Give them some milk,
Read them a story,
Use the shh pat technique,
Use the gradual retreat method,
Let them cry it out (this was not a good idea),
Controlled crying and rapid return,
Keep them up late (this definitely does not work, they just get tired and angry instead of just being tired),
Put a hot water bottle in their bed to warm it up before placing them in it,
Placed them precariously in their cot while leaving the room like a ninja, stealth, ghost,
Sang Twinkle Twinkle Little Star,
Sang Head Shoulders Knees and Toes (continuously at 2.00 a.m. as it was the only thing that stopped him crying),
Watched Elmo videos on YouTube,
Watched Blue Planet, Teletubbies, Batman...
Made fart noises,
Downloaded a farting noise mp3 to play on repeat,
Downloaded a heartbeat mp3 to play on repeat,
Held their hand while they fell asleep,
Slept next to them in a sleeping bag,
Slept in their bed with them,
Slept with them in the sleeping bag,
Given in at 3.00 a.m. and just let them sleep in our bed!
Getting kids to sleep is not easy, unless you have one of those amazing children that 'have always slept'. I'm not jealous, honestly.
If anyone has more tips then please don't let me know because I don't listen to them any more, I just do what works for me and my children now and that's seems to be working okay. I usually get a good nights sleep (once a week).