Monday, January 09, 2006

The Second Book report from PBA (Parenting Books Anonymous)

I'm afraid I'm still reading parenting books, though lately I've been concentrating on sleep books:

Brian Symon's Silent Nights gives a really good explantation on how sleep cues work. At the beginning of night time sleep, both tiredness and various cues (e.g. darkness, being in bed etc) contribute to putting you to sleep. As the night goes on and as you continue to sleep, the amount of tiredness decreases; this means that the external sleep cues are increasingly important if you wake up and need to fall back to sleep again.

Symon is an advocate of the CIO (crying it out) method of sleep training. He's very convincing, right up until you actually try to put it into practice and find that listening to the crying is just too stressful.

At the other extreme there is Elizabeth Pantley's The No-Cry Sleep Solution. It's appeal lies in Pantley's promise that you can get your child to learn to fall asleep on her own without tears, as long as you are very patient and follow her method. Most of her case studies are parents who've been co-sleeping with their baby for months (or years); what a boon this book must be to ex-attachment parenters. The book contains lots of suggestions as well as worksheets for the reader to log existing sleep patterns and progress, which is great for people like me who, truth be told, like to be told what to do.

However, where it falls over for me is the need for patience. This method is supposed to take possibly weeks or months - by then my body will have adjusted to surviving on 2 x 3 hour sleeps per night.

But wait - there's more! I've also been reading the Serenity movie magazine. It's one hundred comic-book sized pages of character profiles and behind-the-scenes details. A publication such as this would be useless without some input from Joss Whedon, and there's plenty of that.

I've nearly finished Hideyuki Kukuchi's Vampire Hunter D,a vampire story in a futuristic setting not at all like the Buffyverse. While it's a good story, I keep getting the feeling that the translator's grasp of English could've been better. So it's a little surprising to see the translation credits go to someone with an English name (Kevin Leahy).

Carrie Fisher's The Best Awful though, is not keeping my attention. Although she's a very witty person, I just can't relate to the Hollywood world which is the setting for this story. It may end up being a non-completer.


Make Tea Not War said...

If the No Cry Solution takes months of patience I can't help but wonder whether it's not so much a solution as a way to pass the time while the baby grows older and finally outgrows the sleep problem by themselves. But maybe I'm a cynic.

Ben O. said...

Good stuff . . . nice insight.

Ben O.

Violet said...

mtnw: it's supposed to take up to a few months, or as little as a few weeks. Same diff, as far as I'm concerned. It's why I couldn't use the Baby Whisperer's method, which has been blamed for aggravating mothers' bad backs...

ben o: thanks!