Should You Leave Your Baby Alone in Their Crib?

Are you wondering if you should leave your baby alone in their crib so they learn to stop crying at night? Keep reading to learn more.
Should You Leave Your Baby Alone in Their Crib?

Last update: 26 December, 2023

When children begin to leave their parents’ bed to sleep in their own room, it’s a change that requires patience and affection. Some parents still believe that leaving their child alone in their crib is the only way for them to learn to stop crying at night. However, when little ones cry, it’s because they need you, so try to accompany them with empathy and unconditional love, and never leave your baby crying in their crib.

Thinking twice before deciding to leave your little one alone in their crib is something that could avoid all the emotional damage that this popular practice does to them. Because if they could only express themself with words beyond crying, you’d understand how much it hurts them when you abandon them every night for no apparent reason. And even more so when, until recently, you shared the same bed.

What happens when you leave your child alone in their crib?

For most parents, the decision to leave their little one alone every night, regardless of their inconsolable crying, may seem very effective. Because, after all, they’re in the next room and know that everything’s “alright.” And they believe that this will be just one more stage that their little one will eventually outgrow for better or, in this case, for worse.

A baby crying alone in his crib.
At first, it may seem very difficult to get your baby to settle down to sleep alone, but it’ll be something they’ll learn with dedication.

However, even though adults know that their babies aren’t in danger because they’re nearby, unfortunately, little ones don’t see things from the same perspective. Waking up in the middle of the night in complete darkness inevitably makes them afraid because they don’t know that their parents are nearby. Rather, they feel that they’re alone.

Moreover, parents aren’t the only ones who have a hard time when their babies cry because, in the end, babies are the ones who bear the brunt of it. Crying without any consolation can affect the throat of the little ones, produce tummy aches, and make it more difficult for them to fall asleep.

As parents, understanding the impact of your actions on your baby’s emotional well-being is crucial. Leaving your child alone in their crib, especially during moments of distress, can have lasting effects on their confidence and sense of security. It’s important to recognize that your baby’s cries are not attempts at manipulation; instead, they are expressions of their need for comfort and reassurance. So, it’s better to let them know that you’ll always be by their side when they need you.

Three tips to avoid leaving your little one alone in their crib

It’s no secret that when children are crying inconsolably night after night, the situation at home is less than ideal. And it’s a stressful situation that tests the patience of moms and dads. However, nobody said that having a baby is an easy task, and that doesn’t mean you should neglect your responsibilities.

Here are some recommendations to avoid leaving your child alone in their crib.

1. Cultivate patience and self-control

A mother talking with her crying toddler who's woken up during the night.
Learn to control your emotions in an intelligent way and give your children the affection they need.

Of course, this sounds easier than it is when you have a little one who hasn’t yet learned to sleep without company. But it’s very important to keep in mind that your children don’t cry because they’re naughty or because they want to make you angry and upset.

While leaving them alone until they calm down may seem like an effective strategy (because, eventually, at some point, babies get tired and give up), the truth is that the feelings of distress and abandonment they experience only damage your children’s confidence and security.

By fostering patience and self-control, you create an environment where your child feels loved and supported. While it may be tempting to resort to leaving your baby alone until they calm down, this approach can lead to feelings of distress and abandonment. Remember, it’s a passing stage, and your consistent presence during these early months lays the foundation for a strong parent-child bond

2. Remember that it’s a passing stage

Nobody comes into this world knowing everything, and leaving their parents’ bed and learning to sleep in their own room is something that babies won’t achieve overnight. Because of this, during those first months when your little one feels emotionally abandoned, don’t leave your baby alone in their crib while anguish and crisis drown them in tears. Instead, answer their call and, with affection and respect, make it very clear that you’ll always be there for them.

Remember that traumas remain engraved in the memory. And when your child becomes a teenager, you can’t expect them to tell you everything that happens to them if you weren’t there to tend to their tears when they were young. Because even when they were a baby, you made it very clear with your actions that you wouldn’t be with them in difficult moments.

3. Provide security and reassurance

Parents are there to serve as a refuge and guide for our little ones. So, if your baby cries at night and you leave them alone until they calm down, you’re not teaching them anything about self-control. You’re only conveying to them that you won’t be there for them when they need your company the most.

In cultivating a sense of security and reassurance, you provide your baby with the comfort they need to navigate the changes that come with leaving their parents’ bed. Rather than leaving them alone in their crib, offer your love and guidance during these transitions. This not only helps your baby adapt to new situations but also ensures that they grow up with the confidence that Mom and Dad will always be there to support them

Don’t leave your baby alone in their crib: Assure them of your love

In conclusion, abandoning the practice of leaving your baby alone in their crib is a step toward building a resilient and emotionally secure child. Your love and presence during these formative stages set the tone for a lifetime of trust and open communication. So, embrace this new chapter in your child’s life with patience, understanding, and the unwavering assurance that you will always be there for them.

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This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.