Sleep Support the Nurturing Sleep way,
Happy, safe and reassured!
My emotional wellbeing approach to baby and child sleep is best described as emotionally appropriate.
The aim is to ensure that each baby and child’s feelings and emotions are fully addressed so that she feels safe, happy and reassured in relation to sleep.
It’s important that emotions are addressed because sometimes they can become barriers to healthy and restorative sleep. To effectively address these possible barriers and emotions we need to dig deep to identify emotional, traumatic and difficult experiences the parents and / or child may have experienced during pregnancy, birth or after birth which may be influencing sleep now.
We need to recognize and acknowledge that all behavior has meaning - which is why I do not use behavioural techniques which, in isolation, aim to "train" behaviors.
In a nutshell - What I do not do:
I do not sleep train babies or young children,
I do not use quick fixes, nor do I use behavioural approaches such as controlled crying, cry-it-out or even no-cry. Quick fixes and behavioral approaches serve to ‘train and condition’ a child to sleep without thought of their underlying emotional needs or experiences. While these approaches may suit some parents, I offer an alternative.
Please also note: I do not use behavioral approaches - therefore I do not use a no-cry approach - no-cry is a behavioral approach.
What my emotional wellbeing sleep approach is about: What I do:
It’s about responsiveness, listening, looking beyond the behaviors to the underlying emotions and feelings, understanding the root causes of difficult sleep behaviors, and behaviors generally. My work and support is influenced by my training in prenatal and perinatal psychology and healing early developmental trauma, and delivered within a structured approach which is in line with connection parenting theories.
It’s about connection, trust, attunement and attachment;
It's about understanding what behaviors mean, and what the roots of those behaviors are;
It's about acknowledging the child's experiences in utero, during birth, and postnatally.
It’s about meeting emotional as well as physical needs, and helping parents understand these underlying needs;
It’s about making sure a child feels physically and emotionally safe to be his or her authentic self;
It’s about empowering parents and carers through supporting understanding, informing, providing tools to support their unique child and providing a realistic level of support;
It’s also about a structured approach towards the sleep goal;
It’s about viewing each baby and child as a unique individual and respecting each child’s unique experiences, feelings and emotions.
It’s about realistic goals for each child and family.
What do I do exactly?
Many parents ask this question!
My answer: I don’t know until I have fully investigated each case. If I knew before I started working with a family I’d be using a one size fits all" approach.
However, I can tell you that the process involves:
Investigation of sleep, behaviors and previous experiences, birth, and pregnancy, daily routines etc.
Suggested approaches to support your child holistically - physically, emotionally, developmentally, socially, meeting holistic needs; The approach involves daytime work rather then focusing on sleep "associations" and fixing sleep/behaviours. Sleep behaviours are a symptom of what's underlying the child holistically, so we need to dig to the roots of the behaviours.
“The level of support provided by Ann was much more than I was expecting and I felt supported every day of the package. I felt that Ann really cared about getting J’s sleep sorted. She took into account the needs of the whole family when formulating the plan and I cannot praise her help enough. I was astonished at how quickly we got results”
Parents of 18 month old; 2015..
The benefits for us are many. I was hit quite hard by postnatal depression, and the sleep deprivation was really holding back my recovery. Once our baby started sleeping through at 6.5 months, it became much easier to tackle the depression and life became easier, happier and healthier. Our baby woke up smiling and laughing from her naps, wriggled happily when we settled her to sleep, and slept well even in unfamiliar surroundings, at the childminder’s and on holiday. The power of the routine is reassuring for us as parents, and gives us a lovely window of time to wind down with our baby at the end of each day.
Parents of 4-6 month old.
Understanding crying and exactly how to respond to various behaviours in a sensitive way was extremely valuable.
Mother of 5 month old.
Working with Ann
4 week support plans are no longer offered because I have found families gain good outcomes with the support chat/consultation approach. This approach is more flexible in terms of "pacing" the work to meet the child's and family needs and teasing out potential "layers" of barriers to sleep.
Due to high demand, I sometimes need to work with a waiting list and I occasionally need to close the contact form to regulate incoming work.
Thank you for your understanding and patience.
More information about support on the Support and Contact page.