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5 Common Babywise Pitfalls

Babywise has been considered a controversial book for babies, but there are ways you can implement some of the advice in a safe and practical way. 

We've written about Babywise before, and about the cry-it-out method in general. And we know all too well that this is an emotionally charged topic for many of our readers. Some of the parents in the Baby Sleep Site community are proponents of cry-it-out methods like Babywise; others denounce these kinds of methods completely. And many fall somewhere in the middle. 

The purpose of today;s article isn't a controversial one, though. This article doesn't denounce Babywise methods (like crying it out). But it doesn't attempt to convert parents to those methods, either. But before we get into some Babywise "do's" and "don'ts", let's make one thing clear: Babywise isn't for everyone. At the Baby Sleep Site, we believe that every child (and family) is different, so there isn't a sleep training method out there that's right for everyone. And Babywise is no exception. 

We've heard from lots of parents who tried Babywise methods, and, for various reasons, had no success. We've also heard from parents who've use Babywise methods with great success. We wanted to remind our readers that you can apply Babywise principles (and cry-it-out principles in general) in a thoughtful, safe way. Babywise tends to be painted in extreme terms, but it doesn't have to be an extreme sleep training method. Remember, any sleep training method is only as intense and "hard core" as you make it. 

So, if you're interested in using some Babywise methods to sleep train your own baby, but aren't sure how to go about doing it in a way that's both effective and safe, consider a few of these "do's" and "don'ts": 

1. DON'T start too early. 

Younger babies require gentle, newborn-friendly sleep coaching strategies. Learn more on The Baby Sleep Site. 

2. Do consider your personality (and your baby's!)

Babywise is built around carefully-timed schedules. This kind of schedule-oriented method can work beautifully for a mom and dad who are schedule-oriented people themselves. But those who aren't? Those parents who tend to be more carefree, "let's see what comes" types? Highly-scheduled methods like this may not work. Learn more on The Baby Sleep Site. 

3. DON'T check your brain and parental instincts at the door. 

There is no (NO) parenting book, or sleep training philosophy, that can stand as a substitute for a parent's own common sense. Learn more on The Baby Sleep Site. 

4. DO honor your parenting philosophy. 

Some parents are just flat-out opposed to any method that's going to force them to listen to their babies cry. That's okay. Other parents are fine with letting some controlled crying happen, because they believe that, in the end, the benefits to the entire family can be worth it. And you know what? That's okay, too. Know your parenting philosophy and own it. Learn more

5. DON'T be guided by extremes. 

There are those who will tell you that Babywise will have your 4 week old baby sleeping through the night. There are others who will attempt to convince you that Babywise will ruin your baby forever. Odds are, though, that neither extreme is accurate.

You can learn more about all these "do's" and "don'ts" over at The Baby Sleep Site

Christina Alario

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1 comment

  • I guess I am the one not accepting any crying it out. I tried the traditional Ferber’s at first, it was like “everyone does that, cannot be that bad”. But it just did not feel right at any level! I gave up for a while until I’ve found the other method online. That was a short guide with very good reviews – How to teach a baby to fall asleep alone, or something like that. The method was so gentle I could not believe it would work. But it does! It is called HWL and it really works fast and seems totally harmless.

    Olivia on

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