It’s Time We Stop Normalizing The Idea Babies Should Sleep Through The Night

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“Can we stop telling parents their baby needs to sleep through the night?

Please. PLEASE. Can we stop telling parents this?

I see it all the time on these mommy Facebook groups…

When will my baby sleep through the night?

Can anyone recommend a good sleep trainer?

My son/daughter still has a night feed, can I ween them?

Y’all, please. I know I sound harsh but can we stop?

I was that mom, too.

With the busy fingers.

Googling all the things that could possibly be wrong with my child because he simply would. not. sleep.


You know about postpartum depression?

I’m fairly certain a year and a half of major sleep deprivation had something to do with it.

Not just because my baby wouldn’t sleep…but because everyone and their mother was telling me there was something WRONG with my baby And I had to FIX him.

So, I obsessed about sleep.

OBSESSED about it.

Don’t co-sleep.


Don’t sleep train.

Sleep train.

No soother.


No night feed.

Night feed.

Oh holy night, guys. ENOUGH.

I confused the poor guy and quite honestly made it worse for both of us.

Peter Fleming, professor of infant health and developmental psychology at the University of Bristol, says the idea that babies should sleep through the night is a 21st-century idea. It’s more natural for them to wake up, often.

Adults don’t sleep through the night either.

Gosh, darn it. Leave parents alone.

Some. Babies. Don’t. Sleep.

Look, I get it. Sleep is magical. It’s needed.

We miss it. Lack of it can honestly make us batty.

I get it.

But let us do what we need to do to make it through those first tiresome years of our child’s life.

We don’t need to feel like we’re creating a dependent little munchkin that will one day roll into med school with a binkie and a lovey.

I’m over it.

We don’t need to fix our baby’s sleep.

We need to listen to their requests.

Do they want to be held? Hold them.

Do They want to sleep next to you because it makes them feel safe? Let them.

Do they actually sleep? AMAZING. Don’t check on them. They’ll smell you the second you step into that room and it’s game over.

And to the folks with ALL the advice….(I guess I’m one now, aren’t I…Oops.)

Just bring coffee.

Bring the damn coffee.

And praise those parents for doing the best darn job they can.

Because sometimes, you just end up with the kid that doesn’t sleep.”

infant boy laying in bed holding a stuffed animal
Courtesy of Anneliese Lawton

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Marie-Claude Goudreau. You can follow her journey on her blog. Join the Love What Matters family and subscribe to our newsletter.

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