Who am I referring to? This woman is none other than Gina Ford. When Ally was born and having tons of sleep issues, I bought one of Gina’s Ford’s books in the hope that it would provide me a solution. I remember reading it and obviously as a new parent, took it as the gospel truth. A daily routine did help Ally, she thrived on it, but there was no way we could carry out Gina’s Ford’s strict routine. So I devised something similar that suited our lifestyles. It was much easier cos Ally was bottle fed from Day 1.
When Max came along, I now had two kids under 3 to look after. Max was fed on demand and would snack instead of taking a full feed. From the early days you could tell that he wasn’t going to be a Gina Ford baby, I could not force him to drink anymore than he wanted which resulted in many little feeds during the day. I remember taking out the same book, reading it and then throwing it at the wall as it just seemed completely ridiculous. I had no heart to let my son “cry-down” as advised in the book. After a month, Max made his own routine , his feeds got more regular, his sleep patterns more obvious. Bliss! And I didn’t have to subject him to crying it out on his own.
Luke is now nearly 3 weeks old, he is my biggest baby and feeds well during the day. Towards evening and later at night he can start to get a bit fussy . This is when his tummy seems to start acting up as well. Obviously I haven’t learned my lesson cos once more that dreaded book was whipped out. I wanted to know if there was a way I could help him sleep for longer stretches during the night. The more I read the book, the more absurd it all seemed, especially with 2 older children to care for. Unless I clone myself, there was no way I could put Luke on any sort of routine.
Ms Ford has her points, yes children need a routine, it helps them feel settled since they know exactly what’s going to happen next. They also need a good night’s sleep, as do the parents! But her methods just do not work for my family, and I honestly feel they are far too rigid for babies who are totally breastfed. At times baby might just be thirsty and so he doesn’t take a full feed, then what? Do you count that as a feed? Do you try to ” force” him to drink more?
I’ve decided to put away Ms Ford’s book forever, it serves no purpose except to make me long for a ” text-book” baby instead of appreciating the unique individual that I have. In the meantime, fans of Ms Ford, please don’t come after me with pitch forks. I am sleep deprived and hormonal, you don’t want to mess with me.