You buy a new TV/car/mobile phone and get a user handbook. You leave hospital with the most precious thing in the world and are told that the baby will 'let you know what it wants'. When I asked about routines, the midwife told me not to worry and things would happen naturally. The thing to remember is you have a choice, and you should do what is best for you.
I asked for the book from a work colleague as a leaving gift before maternity leave. My partner read it first and then I did. We decided that it was the way forward as it made sense. Nancy is a delight - people always comment on how content she is, particularly the health visitor, which makes me smile as we used to hide the book when they visited!!
It's hard work at the start, but going to mother and baby groups and hearing others' stories made me realise how good Gina's routines are. She slept through at 10 weeks old. Sometimes the days don't go to plan, but most of the time they do. I always know why she is crying and can almost use her to tell the time!! We now have a five month old, who is in the process of being weaned, with the help of Gina's book. She chatters herself to sleep at 7pm and wakes up chatting and giggling at 7am.
I cannot recommend the CLB routine enough. My advice is to read the whole book before you give birth. Then decide for yourself. We have nicknamed it 'the Bible'!
My daughter was three weeks old when I was in a mess and had no idea what do with this baby that had come into our lives. I was trying to establish a routine of some sort but had absolutely no idea how to go about it. A friend of mine gave me a copy of the CLB book and we have never looked back.
It took some time and effort to get the routine established and as our baby grew so did our understanding of her and it all 'fell into place'. It was so worth it! We have a beautiful contented baby who is often commented about on how 'contented' she is.
Thanks to Gina and her team and two dedicated parents, our baby is thriving and happy.
I came across the CLB books after doing a search on the web with a desperate plea of 'how to get a baby to sleep'. There were many results but after looking through them I thought that Gina's methods and routines looked the best.
So I bought the book and joined the website and I have never looked back, I liked the way the routines are set out and that they guide you through the day and I have found the support and advice from the other members a godsend.
I can't thank Gina enough, she has been my saviour, I have had a mixed bag of problems, resulting in many many night wakings. I was worn out, I really felt that I was at breaking point, thankfully Gina has sorted out our feeding and sleeping issues and I have a CLB and a very happy mummy!
Thank you so much Gina.
Both of our children (now 3 years and 9 months) have been 'CLBs' from birth. It's amazing how Gina tends to be associated with the superficial things - keeping feeding and sleeping diaries; sticking to a timetable; not making eye contact at bed time (the headline things). These things are important, and they contribute to the overall method and how it works. But for me, Gina's books are about a much bigger picture, about a unique philosophy for raising children. In simple terms, it's about having respect for your child. It's about understanding that your child needs help and support from you in making sure he gets to rest and feed when he needs to, that he isn't able to know how in ten minutes' time he will be so tired that he'll become hysterical, or how, sleepy as he may feel, he needs a good milk feed - and that it isn't reasonable to expect him to. Babies don't let you know what they want - if they did there wouldn't be that classic checklist that's issued to all new parents (Hungry? Tired? Bored? Nappy?) With CLB, you don't need the checklist. You already know.
It's amazing that 'Gina Mums' are portrayed as selfishly wanting their babies to fit in around them, when Gina's methods place the baby's needs firmly at the top of the list. I think the fact that this also allows parents to get sleep is a happy result of nature, that babies' needs being truly met coincides with parents' needs being met, too. Baby's and Mum's happiness are not mutually exclusive conditions, despite the myths.
The 'Gina Mums' I know are amazing parents who breastfeed for much longer than average, who home-cook nutritious family meals, who use positive discipline, who use TV sparingly, who make sure their children sleep well at night. I don't know a group of parents anywhere with such high standards as on the CLB website. I think these people were probably amazing people already, but the CLB resources give the knowledge and tools to enable parents to have the family life they aspire to. The CLB community is classless, raceless, ageless; it unites people who want a calm, loving family life, and who are prepared to put every effort into achieving it. I've followed Gina's methods for so long that I can't remember ever not thinking this way about bringing up children, but I know she has been an immeasurably positive influence on us as parents, and we will be forever grateful that she had the courage and conviction to publish her books.
Whenever somebody says you are lucky to have two kids both really calm and contented. I tell them I owe this to Gina. My 8 week old baby is the envy of most mothers around who happened to be mums at the same time. Mine is sleeping through the night almost (well 6am isn’t bad, considering he is only 9 weeks). He is a sleepy baby, but beginning to be more alert now.
I would like to say how helpful I've found the Contented Baby Book and CLB book of weaning. I have always been an organised sort of person, and did not want life to descend into chaos because of a new arrival. I liked the way the book told me exactly what to do at what time.
Having read the Contented Baby Book when I was pregnant, I started putting my son into the suggested routine at six weeks old. He immediately began to sleep for a longer time at night, whereas previously he would have woken up twice at night to be fed. It does take time and patience to establish a routine but is well worth the effort.
By the time he was three months old, our baby was sleeping through reliably until 7 am. This is so much better than many breastfed babies I know of. I seem to have the best of both worlds, as although he has been completely breastfed, he still sleeps well at night. The routine also makes it possible to put him to bed early without him re-awakening, which is particularly important given that my husband sometimes does shift work from home.
Now that we have reached the weaning stage, I am confident that we can continue to maintain this good sleeping pattern in the long term.
Joining the web site has also proved very useful. I immediately found an effective treatment for cradle cap, and had lots of help and support from other mums with other problems, especially my son's eczema. He is much improved as a result of the advice I've had, and I no longer feel alone with this problem. Finally, it has been good to have been able to arrange to meet other local mums following the routine, particularly as the local mum and baby group has a long waiting list.
These few words are cause of many a controversy or heated discussion. I first heard about them over a discussion with friends. At the time was 4 months pregnant, and felt completely clueless about babies, bringing them up, and motherhood. Needless to say this all was very daunting.
I was craving knowledge and being overseas and away from friends who might have answered my questions I took to reading as many books as possible. The third on my list was the Contented Baby book and at six months pregnant I was now very curious to see what it revealed. That was it! What a book, what a revelation! At last I had a set of tools to work with, and answers to many of my questions. I now could understand what motherhood would be about.
I re-read it at 7 months and at 8 months, highlighting parts and chapters. I took it to hospital with me; I bought an extra copy in case I lost it (Thank goodness for online ordering). And now I still refer to it on a daily basis. This book has given me the confidence and abilities to be a mummy, with a wonderfully happy baby girl. So to sum it up: Gina Ford, The Contented Little Baby book, it's all in the title - "a Contented Baby"; isn't that what all parents are aspiring for their children !
Before my son was born my mum, who worked for an obstetrician, kept telling me that yet another patient had recommended the Contented Little Baby Book by Gina Ford and swore by the routines and advice it contained. I got myself a copy and in turn, have become a CLB advocate who wouldn't dream of living life any other way!
Although we DO go through the odd "phase", I consider ourselves to be extremely lucky because in general, we have a baby who is thriving on the routines and seems to be a textbook CLB. Every day I find myself appreciating our situation and thankful that life with a baby is, in fact, easier than I imagined.
Thank you Gina for your incredible work and your life-saving books! We are eternally grateful.
I first came across the Contented Little Baby Book when I was pregnant with my first child. Having read a fair amount of negative press I was intrigued by Gina Ford's methods which sounded like good old fashioned common sense to me. After reading the book I felt completely reassured with how to approach life with a new baby and the sense of confidence it gave me as a new parent was amazing.
My daughter is now nearly two and has thrived on having a routine. I think how incredibly lucky we are to have a little girl who is so happy and healthy and has such great sleeping and eating habits but in all honesty it isn't luck at all it is a tribute to the great advice offered in Gina Ford's books and her wonderful online community: Contentedbaby.com.
I had no idea how hard it would be to have and look after a baby of my own. Other peoples babies were so cute, cuddly and looked relatively easy. That was when I could say 'goodbye' at the end of the day!
When pregnant I didn't think we'd need help with a routine. I just thought we'd slip into one and I'd instinctively know what to do. I couldn't have been more wrong! From day one he cried, and cried, and cried. For 5 hours straight some days/nights and no amount of feeding or rocking would stop him. This carried on for several weeks when we decided enough was enough. We had always known about Gina Ford's books but due to lots of friends and Healthcare professionals advising us against them, we never really read them for ourselves. I really wish now that I'd read them when pregnant and decided for myself instead of just going on other peoples opinions. People who hadn't even given the routines a chance either!
My sister (one of the few who kept telling me to get my son into at least a bedtime routine and maybe think about reading Gina Ford!) had a copy which I read and initially was taken aback by how 'strict' things looked and I got worried about how I was ever going to stick to it.
What first amazed me was that a very young baby will probably only be able to stay awake for up to 2 hrs at a time. Why had no one told me this! No wonder my baby cried so much - he was probably exhausted! That simple piece of information changed our lives. We immediately started the gentle crying down technique which worked pretty quickly and soon he was settling himself for naps and even managing to re-settle if he came into a light sleep.
There were days when everything went pear-shaped and days when I just couldn't keep him awake when feeding but I now wish I had been more relaxed about it and accepted that the routines are a guide to work towards and not something that "must be done right now or else it won't work".
We now have the most contented, wonderful, happy and joyful child in the world (although we are very biased!) and we really believe that a lot of that is down to Gina Ford's CLB Book (and of course our wonderful genes)!
So thank you Gina and thank you to all the wonderful people on Contentedbaby.com who have been such a support and a wealth of information. I really don't think we would be where we are today, and as happy, without the books and this site.
I wasn't introduced to the Gina books until I asked my sister "how do you get them to go to sleep at night?". My son was nearly 7 weeks old by the time I got the book and I couldn't put it down and wished and wished I'd read this before I'd had him - he was 10 days late and I could have spent those carefree days really preparing myself!
I decided to adapt things slowly - firstly starting with the bath and bedtime routine, then the feeding and morning sleep. At five months we're still working on the lunch-time nap, but I feel we're slowly getting there. The main thing these methods have done for me is that I can't wait for us to have a second child so that I can start right at the beginning rather than battle with weeks of sleepless nights and poor feeding.
Its always comforting to know that when I'm feeding or settling him, there are thousands of other "Gina-mums" out there doing the exact same thing at that time.
I know I'm very lucky to have a beautiful, happy, contented little child who I hope will grow into a caring, thoughtful, contented adult.
Parenting is not always a natural science and Gina's common sense approach is a fantastic medium between the strict 1950s routine and the laid back 1980s approach which really does work.
Following Gina's advice and the routine was the best and kindest thing that we did for our 4 -month-old-"fed on demand-sleeping in our bed-carried about everywhere in our arms- baby"! She was miserable, hungry all the time, only slept in our arms and this was meant to be normal? A friend introduced me to Gina Ford and we have not looked back since. Within a couple of weeks she was sleeping 12 hours at night, feeding well, happy and most certainly contented. Now at 18 months she thrives on the routine that was put in place since then.
We did not think twice before guiding our new baby into the routines. It is unbelievable how happy and smiley she is!
I love contentedbaby.com for the support, encouragement and advice given here.
Thank you so much!
What can I say that the others didn't? The CLB book has meant the world to me!
I was introduced to it when I was 6 months pregnant. I read through it in about a day and decided that it was the routine and advice that I was going to follow. It seemed to easy - not anything like all the people was telling me: sleepless nights, non-stop crying baby, was this to good to be true? I must say my daughter is now 9 months old and probably the most contented little girl in the world (bet you all say that!). I can't stop myself telling people about the books and what it did for me and I feel sorry for those that don't use the books. I've never had a sleepless night and she is the happiest little girl.
Thanks Gina, don't know what I would have done without your advice!
Life before the book was difficult to say the least, I was at my wits end and did not know how I could demand feed (which I had been told was best) and get into a routine, which is, of course, impossible. A friend of mine gave me 'The Book', which she had from another friend of ours and it saved my life. My daughter, and as a result myself and my boyfriend, are so much happier. I couldn't have coped without it, structuring her day had helped with her colic and at two months she is sleeping from her 10 pm feed through to 6.30 am. We still have a few things to sort out but we are getting enormous amounts of help from the Contentedbaby.com website. and as more problems arise (as they do), we tackle them with the continuing help of Gina, her team and the other CLB mothers (and dads too).
Can't imagine life without you!
I bought the CLB book after a discussion by the other women at my NCT antenatal class. I read it while pregnant but forgot about it once my daughter was born, as she was such an easy baby for the first six weeks. When she was ten weeks old (and I was tearing my hair out), I reread CLB and decided to give it a go. Two of the mum's from my antenatal class were already using the routines with success. She slotted into the routines very quickly and I never looked back. She slept well and fed well and was truly contented. What more could you ask for?
When my second daughter was born, I put her straight into the routine, very strictly. She wouldn't follow the sleeping, but I found the structured feeding really helped with having a toddler as well. I could plan for her to read and have a snack while I was feeding the baby. Perseverance paid off and daughter number two is a brilliant sleeper and generally a contented little girl. I did buy the Sleeping guide for this one, and realised she was genuinely hungry, which was why she kept waking in the night. She was eight months old when the website came online and I joined immediately. There was lots of information I wish I'd had in the first 4 months (about lunchtime naps in particular), but by then, I had it pretty much sorted, but it was wonderful having other like minded mums 'nearby'.
When daughter number three was born, I decided not to adhere to the routines so strictly, which has worked (all three girls need more sleep than the routine for their age), with a 5 week period of awfulness, when she wouldn't sleep in the cot nor in my arms during the day. The website provided the answer (FAQ) and I now have a third contented baby. Thank goodness for the website!
I also used the Potty Training book for my first daughter, although a desperate post elicited a call from Gina. I returned to nappies and waited. Then, two months later my daughter asked to wear 'big girl pants' and we made a star chart as suggested by the book. She was potty trained that week!
I have the Contented Baby to Confident Child book, which I use for reference and it brings much sought for sanity.
I have just bought the cookbook, too. My girls eat pretty much everything we do, but I cook separately for them if we have more spicy foods. So far, every recipe I've tried has been a success with both of them.
I can't express how grateful I am to Gina Ford for her books. I am a creature of routine and like to feel in control. These routines give me that feeling. They have been hard to establish but the rewards are boundless. The best thing I can do is pass on the compliments I have received from family and strangers alike - how well behaved my girls are, how happy they are and how well they eat (and how in control I appear to be!).
I bought the CLB book whilst pregnant, after a recommendation from a friend whose baby slept through from 6 weeks old, and after reading and rereading CLB whilst I was expecting, immediately knew this was how we wanted to bring up our son - it made so much sense. Instead of dreading looking after our new baby, not knowing when/how much to feed etc, we were now looking forward to parenthood with a plan!!!!!
I started the routines when my baby was one week old. I successfully and fully breastfed him for 5 months. He is pretty much a textbook CLB, loves his food, hardly every cries (and when he does I usually know why) sleeping 2 hours every lunchtime and 7pm-6.30 am every night (dare I tempt fate??!!).
I have all of Gina's books, and am looking forward to reading her latest which I've just ordered. There isn't a day goes by when I don't refer to CLB, the Weaning Guide, or one of her recipe books.
In my view babies are happiest when they know what's coming next, and CLB does just this. I think it provides the perfect ground work for life: nursery, school, work are all about routine. Routine is a fact of life for most of us, whatever path we choose.
Everyone remarks on how my baby is such a happy little chappy and tells me how lucky I am. I say luck has nothing to do with it!! And every day I say a little thank you for Gina and all her help and guidance.
I was recommended the CLB book by a friend whilst I was pregnant. as soon as I read the book it made perfect sense and I instinctively knew it would work. I felt so confident leading up to the birth, that I would be able to cope and know what to do and when, and was even able to book a dentist's appointment for 8 weeks after the birth, knowing what time I would be free!
I had a difficult birth and having a routine to follow immediately made it so much easier than finding my way in the dark. I chose to exclusively breastfeed and my son has thrived on the routines. He never ever cries with hunger and is so chilled out, I am sure this is because he knows I will feed him at regular intervals so he doesn't need to worry! Another friend of mine loaned me another book that advocated co-sleeping, continual breastfeeding on demand etc and to be honest it made me feel sick with worry just reading it! I firmly believe children need parents who are rested and able to look after themselves, not fraught and exhausted - CLB has helped me to achieve that with baby who is now (apart from the odd day or two - and even then I can figure out why!) a very happy 5 month old baby.I've started using the weaning book now and it's been fantastic too.
Thanks Gina - you gave me and my husband confidence in our ability to be good parents
I was given the CLBB by a friend but after going into premature labour at only 28 weeks I didn't think about the book until I finally got my babies home after 9 weeks in SCBU. Even then health visitors and nursing staff told me it was madness to try them in a routine. Five weeks later and very very little sleep I found the book, started the routines and haven't looked back!
Prior to having a baby I had nothing to do with babies, being a career women and not very maternal then, I was first recommended the CLB book by a friend and purchased it when I was pregnant with my first child.
I was scared to hell of applying it because of how firm it seemed but then after 9 days of trying the demand feeding thing (which most midwives insist is the best) with my new born she was unsettled and I was beside myself. I then applied the CLB book bit by bit, a little more each day and noticed a change in my baby immediately, she cried less and was more content and so was I.
Having a muscular disorder which worsens considerably with sleep deprivation, I managed to embrace motherhood by using the CLB routine. By knowing when my baby was wanting and ready to nap ensured I could get a nap in up to 3 times during the daytime! My pain settled immediately and I became a more content mum. She slept through the night at 7 weeks old only to catch a bad cold for two weeks which threw the routine out the window during this period because she struggled to feed well with a blocked and runny nose. This was all fine though because as Gina says when baby is sick, do what they want and need. She fed frequently and woke several times during the night again. She is 10 weeks old now, very well and sleeping through again. There were also a few weeks prior to her getting ill where she wanted to split feed and sleep more and I followed her lead and softly encouraged the routine everyday as well.
She is just so happy and contented now and I know my baby well enough to know she is loving her life, that her needs are met before she even has to cry. Prior to using the book/routine I fed my baby whenever she cried because I assumed she was hungry, then later after applying the book I realised she cried for other reasons too: i.e. over tired etc, the biggest help for me was knowing that she was now happy from feeding enough and getting enough sleep, I could now work out the other cries. Now she rarely cries and instead chats away all the time. Thank you to Gina for helping first time mums into motherhood and new babies into the world.
One of my close friends swore by the CLB book but similarly I had heard stories that it was too regimented etc. We bought the book before my baby was born and both felt that it made good sense. We started it when he was 5 days old and boy did we get some criticism, everything from: "it's cruel to wake a sleeping baby" to "it's cruel to keep him awake," to "you can't possibly follow a book he's a little human and he'll find his own routine" to "I understand why you want to try it as you don't have a clue about babies!" Well in an emotional state you can imagine what this did to me and I really wanted to give in at points but my husband kept me going and reminded me why we were doing it. It feels sometimes like a naughty secret as we tend not to tell some people what we are doing as they are so negative. However these people always use the same word to describe my son as, "CONTENTED!"
It is the best decision we made as he is now 9 weeks old, has slept from 7-10pm and 11-7am since being 5 weeks old and hardly ever cries because we know what he needs when. He is gaining weight well and goes to sleep from fully awake without a dummy, a feed or any real help from us. We are all incredibly happy and would like to thank Gina and everyone on the team for her book and this fantastic website.
I looked at the CLB book before my son was born. I thought it was excellent - a really good routine to follow and vowed to do it to the letter. A midwife who came to visit and told me that routines were not for little babies, that the CLB book was badly written(!) and that "we feed on demand, dear". I was too exhausted to take exception to that, although normally she would have been shown the door for that patronising comment!!!
Fast forward to week 12 and he was still not sleeping through, was napping randomly during the day and was just not in any routine. In desperation, I turned back to the CLB book which I'd put away after being told that I shouldn't use it. I looked at the routines and picked the one for him that I thought he most closely fitted at the time. We followed it to the letter and last night (two weeks into the new regime), he slept through. I'm now going to move him on until he reaches the correct routine for his age (he's currently at the 8 - 12 week routine, so isn't too far behind). This WOULD NOT have happened if I had stuck to my old "fumble in the dark" method.
Thank you Gina and all the mums on this website who have given me invaluable support - it's been the best money I ever spent!
We have bought the CLB book before our daughter was born and we agreed that this was the way we wanted to look after our baby . Also friends in the UK and overseas had tried it and were as a result parents of happy and healthy babies. I tried memorizing all the routines before the due date but without having " the device" in hand - so to speak , all sounded confusing and complicated. Cnce our daughter had arrived , we gave her 2 weeks to get settled, as she was also back in hospital when she was 2 days old, but after the 2nd week, we have put her on the routine and never looked back since then . Whenever we had our ups and downs, we could consult the book and when we could not find our answers in the book, we went online to consult with the team of experts who are there to help us out, apart from being able to share experiences with all the other mums . Gina herself is very closely involved, and on many occasions she contacts the mums to offer her personal and tailored advise. Gina has been following up on our baby's progress for the past 3 months after picking up one of my mails during a problematic time . She is always logical, reasonable and understanding of the fact that all babies are different and her routines are guidelines to be altered and adapted slightly as per the needs of every individual baby. Not once during our many conversations , have I ever felt Gina was rigid or too strict - on the contrary , she was always warm , understanding and putting the wellbeing of the baby above everything else.
Once again thanks to Gina, the Team and all the mums who help each other out with every problem and share their joys on the website.
When I found out I was having twins, and started to panic over just how I was going to do everything, a friend introduced me to the ideas behind Contented Baby; after our discussion I went and brought the book. All I can say is best thing I ever brought.
The first week after their birth I played everything by ear and let them take the lead, as they were 5 weeks early and so small added to the fact I was too tired to 'argue'. This was absolutely not working for me, as they were in completely different feeding and sleeping patterns, and for the first few days after coming home from hospital I hardly got any sleep.
The following Monday I started following CLB, and haven't looked back since. Proof is defiantly in the pudding as my girls are now 5 months old, have reached the average weight for their age, are so happy, and have been sleeping from 7pm till 7am.
We have also started following Gina's weaning guide and have had great success with this too; I would not be as happy, and my girls would not as contented as they are, if it was not for CLB.
When I was pregnant I had decided that I was going to use the 'attachment parenting' style for bring my daughter up. We bought a baby sling, were co-sleeping with her and demand feeding, the full works. However, this style of parenting didn't work for us and after 8 weeks of our little one only being able to fall asleep on the breast (and that was only after 3 or 4 hours of crying and screaming in the evenings/early night), only sleeping for 2 or 3 hours at a time, getting no sleep during their day unless she was in the sling which meant that I couldn't sleep and screamed blue murder if I put her down, I had had enough. I was like a walking zombie and really needed some help.
Thankfully I read about Gina on a forum on the web and after reading all of the good and bad that was being said about her I decided to get hold of a copy of her book to see what all the fuss was about. And I am so glad I did! I read through the book very quickly and could see nothing in there that didn't make sense, as well as the routines the book help so much other practical advise. Why had nobody told me before that babies need to sleep for x amount of time during the day and that they couldn't be awake for more than 2 hours at a time? And why had nobody advised me on the best way of tucking my baby into her bed? I just wish I had found Gina's books earlier.
We now have a very happy smiley 15 week old who goes to sleep very easily on her own without tears and tantrums, can resettle herself if she wakes early from a sleep, sleeps well during the day, sleeps through the night, eats well at all feeds and is a joy to be around. We really could not have achieved anything close to this without Gina's books and the wonderful advise and support from her website. We owe Gina so much thanks and probably our sanity too! Thank you Gina.
I started the routine with my daughter (who is now 20 months old) when she was 2 months old (I wish I bought the book sooner) and I've never had a problem with her feeding or sleeping. It was the most valuable information I have been grateful to get hold of.
My daughter has slept through the night since she was 3 months old (she was born a month early) but as soon as she was taking enough milk during the day, I knew she shouldn't be waking in the middle of night from hunger, so we allowed her to settle herself to sleep which took a couple of nights and we've never had a problem since; she only wakes us if she is ill or too hot/cold. She also goes to bed with no fuss too. My sisters (who have grown-up children) think I was blessed with a lucky baby but I know it was down to technique. She loves her routines (and I still adapted them to suit us both and allowed for flexibility).
For every new mum I know expecting a baby, I buy them a copy of the book along with a baby present; even if they don't want to follow the routines, there's plenty of other tips in the book to help when the baby comes home. Most have thanked me though and also found the routines and advice invaluable.
So, this message is just to add to the support of your good work from lots of mothers I know, who have read and followed the book with successful outcomes.
I am now expecting my second baby any day and I have re-read the book and hope to put it onto a routine as soon as possible this time.
A big thank you from me as I doubt I wouldn't have had such a contented little baby without your help.
I am the mother of two and a half year old twins boys. They are perfect contented little "babies" and have been since they were heavy enough to start on the "Contented Baby Book" Routines. Being born 5 weeks early (3lbs and 5lbs respectively at birth), they were hard work, spending over 2 weeks in special care because they were too small and couldn't maintain their body temperatures. The first day I took them home from the hospital was the happiest and the scariest of my entire life. I had been recommended the Contented Baby book by my best friend who had used it on her son and seeing the results, I was determined to follow Gina's routines with my little ones. The first few weeks were hard-going. As a first time mum, I didn't know if they were eating enough etc and I couldn't follow the routine yet because the twins were still not at the recommended 7lbs. However, even at this time, Gina's book was useful because I used to breastfeed and bottle feed (with expressed milk) and at least I knew from the book how much to feed the twins based on their weight (No other book, doctor, health visitor, nurse or midwife could tell me how much my baby needed!). Before long my boys were at the right sort of weight and I started them on a routine.
Thankfully I could afford an au pair so I managed to stick to the routine (to the minute!) and within 8 weeks of doing this, they were sleeping right through between 7am and 7pm.
I remember the Health Visitor coming in for one of her visits. After seeing Gina's book on the coffee table she gave me a lecture. It was clear from her language that she was vehemently opposed to the routines laid out in the book and told me that I was deluded if I thought the routine was going to help me cope with the babies (and get over my post-natal depression for which I was on medication and had to go for regular visits to the GP for monitoring). However, I persevered and if not for the routine, I know I my post-natal depression would have been a lot worse because I would have had the baby blues and been deprived of sleep myself. Once the twins were sleeping through the night, I was able to get more sleep myself and could face the next day so much better.
Touch wood, I have never had a problem with my boys' sleeping and weaning them was a dream because I used Gina's book on weaning as well (and followed this to the letter too!). They are good eaters (most of the time) and potty training did indeed take a week (Thanks to Gina's books again!).
I have read some articles criticizing Gina's methods and all I can say to that is: I think, in order to be happy and confident, children need structure and routine from an early age. To some people, Gina's methods do seem prescriptive but they have a purpose (and a common sense one to that). I think that as parents, we too need to be structured and Gina's routines give you that.
My twins have just started nursery at a Pre-prep 3 days ago and I have met mothers who didn't follow the Contented Baby Book and still have their kids sleeping with them, waking up at odd times and in the middle of the night etc. I can smile proudly and say I have never had that problem since my twins were 4 months old (and some of these mothers only have one child!).
I just wanted to write this to share with others that you can do the Contented Baby routine with twins and it works!
I want to thank you Gina for the Contented Little Baby routine. I have also thanked my dear friend that recommended it to me. I am from the UK but live in Perth Western Australia. My son is 7 months old today and is the most beautiful living creature in our lives.
When he was born we had my mother over from the UK and then my brother, followed by my sister and her children. Basically we had back to back visitors (living in our house) for 4 months. My son was 7 weeks and 2 days old when my husband and I had our home to ourselves. It was wonderful to see my family but hard with our first newborn baby
From 3 weeks we followed your routine and techniques ... literally by the book. We heard comments like "I can't believe you're waking a sleeping baby" and "you don't need to be so rigid" and "his routine will change". I was paranoid about looking after my baby in front of other people because of the negative looks and comments.
Well, now the people that made those comments have change their tune. From 11 weeks he didn't wake up after his 10.30pm feed and has slept through from 7pm to 7am from a very early age [I can't remember the actual age]. He is happy and a joy to be with. Only yesterday he stayed at a friends house, as I had to go to work, and I gave her the details of his routine. When I collected him she said she was amazed that he did everything exactly as I explained; she said: "you could set your watch by him!"
All the other mums at my mums group are still getting up in the night to feed their little ones and my baby is a month younger than the others. They quite regularly jump for joy when they can say that their son/daughter slept through once that week. They have also said that they will be referring to your routine for number 2!
My husband and I have spent nearly every evening together in peace since our baby was 7-8 weeks old. We do not gloat to anyone or say: "I told you so". People are realising on their own that we made the right move.
My mum constantly tells me how she keeps telling everyone in the UK how good our baby is and that at first she couldn't believe that we were using a book! But after seeing the results she thinks it's the most wonderful thing ever.
I could go on and on about how wonderful the routine is but I can't type for that amount of time.
My husband and I are able to enjoy ourselves as husband and wife and he looks forward to getting home to see his happy beautiful son. We relish in his morning smiles and just love him to bits.
I want to say how thankful I am that I have found the CLB book. I was diagnosed with severe Post Natal Depression when Matilda was 2 weeks old. I felt out of control and Matilda cried for hours on end. I had no structure to my day and seemed to lurch from one crisis to another with me never finding the solution to her crying. After speaking to my GP and getting help for my PND I found the CLB book. Please don't think I am being too gushing but it has totally changed the way I look after Matilda. She slotted into the routines which are logically and clearly explained. She has structured nap and feeding times and is generally a contented baby (well give or take the odd day!) The routine has given me sanity and structure to my day, the lack of which was a contributing factor to my PND. Matilda now regularly sleeps 7-7. We have recently started weaning with the help of Gina's weaning guide. I really don't know how I would have survived without it! Although Gina's routines seem to be a swear word with Health visitors I could not do without them! How can ensuring a baby has enough food and sleep be a bad thing? It is very interesting to see the other ladies I know turning up their noses at the routine when I started, now buying their own copies of the book! I have just ordered Gina's new cook book and am looking forward to creating some culinary masterpieces for Matilda! I want to offer my sincere thanks for the help Gina's books have given me!
Whilst pregnant with my second Daughter Macey, I read about the contented little baby book in Junior magazine and decided to give it a whirl. So from day 1 of Macey's return home from Hospital we put her into Gina's routine and have never looked back. She has followed all of the routines to the dot, gone down at 7pm every night, dropped her 2-3am feed at 4 weeks and on Saturday, day 4 of weaning she slept right through from 7pm till 7am!
Everyone comments on Macey and what an unbelievably happy and contented baby she is, on a recent trip to Florida one man on the flight asked me if my baby was real! I recommend Gina's book to everyone who asks how I have managed to get Macey into such a successful routine and several of my friends are now following the routine themselves.
Thank you Gina for your books and the enjoyment and confidence they have given us with Macey.
My daughter was born in June 03 and I had my son just last November 04.They have been on the routines since day1,and both sleeping through at 8 weeks. We have two very contented babies abd we are well rested contented parents, who can still enjoy our evenings together and get our sleep at night,which was so important to us.I don't know how I would have coped with my first and then having another so close together. Thank you Thank you
Thank you so much for writing 'The Contented Little Baby Book'. It is a life saver and my husband and I will be eternally grateful. it is undoubtedly the best baby book around and the best money I have ever spent. We have two boys, now aged 4 ½ years and 16 months. I didn't know about your book when I had my first son and unfortunately he has never been a good sleeper and is still and early riser. I was determined not to go through the same thing again with my second son and luckily a friend recommended your book.
Our second son quite often managed to sleep for 3 or 4 hours at a time from the start and only woke once or twice during the night. However, it became increasingly difficult to settle him back to sleep and he would then be awake for two hours following his night feeds. As I was feeding him every 2 hours this eventually meant he was awake for most of the night, either feeding or crying and screaming. Then came salvation with your book and the results for me were immediate. Neither of my children would sleep for any length of time on their backs but by using the swaddling technique, my son then slept for 3 hours straight on his back and in his cot rather than in someone's arms! Also, within 24 hours I went from feeding him 2-hourly to feeding every 4 hours. After that I could not put the book down and as you can tell I am positively evangelical about this book. I have recommended it to many people and the ones that have followed it, love it too. I have read this book from cover to cover several times and tell every pregnant woman I meet about it! As one friend put it, you have written a manual on what to do with babies.
Also, your advice on weaning was invaluable. My son now has a healthy appetite and generally he eats more than his older brother. I can see now that the haphazard way in which we weaned our first son has resulted in him being a very fussy eater and some of our methods to coax him into eating have in fact made things worse. However, I am confident that one day he will eat fresh fruit again.
Both my children have eczema, which is a constant battle to try to control but I believe that my younger son's condition would be a lot worse if he was not sleeping and eating properly. My first son has grown out of most of it and hopefully our second will too.
I was so happy with "The Contented Little Baby Book" that I also bought your next book "From Contented Baby to Confident Child". This book is also fantastic and I'm looking forward to putting into practice your advice on potty training amongst other things.
If only your books were available on the NHS or given away in Bounty Packs in hospital, there would be a lot fewer stressed-out mothers around and a lot more contented little babies.
Finally, any chance you could write a book on how to cope with the next 18 years of a child's life?
I have been meaning to write to you for the last year, but as the mother of a 20-month-old boy, I never seem to find the time (I'm sure you understand!).
Your 'Contented Little Baby Book' was recommended to me when I was pregnant and after the initial panic at how structured it all seemed, when I read on it all seemed to make perfect sense.
My son was born in January 2003 and was in your routine as soon as I left hospital. He slept through the night from 10pm at 6 weeks old and from 7pm to 7am at 12 weeks.
Weaning was no problem and when, at 17 months, he began to get fussy about what he ate, your food bible had all the answers that I needed.
He has just started to announce to the world when he needs to go to the toilet. Other mums tell me the horrors of potty training, but I know I can be confident in your advice on potty training and I feel I can deal with it.
It is only when I speak to other mums that I realise that some seem to get in a mess through well-meant advice from health visitors and midwives, who seem only too quick to disapprove of your methods.
Without your books I do not know what I would have done. Your advice has meant that I have a fantastic, happy little boy and I actually look forward to the next challenge he may bring as I know where the answer to any problem lies!
Everyone delights in telling me how lucky I am to have such a happy child. If they are prepared to listen I tell them about your books, otherwise I just smile to myself.
I would just like to write to express my gratitude for your book. It has been an absolute savior and my best friend since I started my little boy on your routine when he was 10 weeks old. He is nearly 9 months old now and everyone always says of him 'what a happy contented little baby'!
My husband's cousin recommended you book to me. I only wish the midwives and health visitors would be more open-minded and do likewise.
As a new mum, I had no idea what I was doing or what to do. The first ten weeks of my son's life were very stressful for me and probably for him too. Now knowing what I learnt from your book, I only wish I had this from day one. I constantly spread the wisdom of your book. It gave me a lot of confidence.
Every day I could say, 'Thank you, Gina!' Our son (3 years) and daughter (8 months) are very happy and contented children. We got your ' Contented Little Baby Book' two and a half years ago from a London-based college. Our son was five months old then and his parents were totally exhausted from feeding on demand and rocking him the whole evening until his last feeding. I will say thank you, because I am able to enjoy motherhood. I am very happy that you wrote this book. I don't know what would have happened if we had not received your book.
My husband and I don't understand why your book is not translated in Dutch or German. As these are the languages that most of our friends and relatives speak, we feel an urge to make sure the gospel of Gina Ford is also available to desperate Dutch and German parents.
In the Netherlands, there is now a research being done with regard to babies who cry a lot. This study is being executed by the University Medical Centre in Utrecht. The idea is that routines are helping. There is now a book called 'routine and swaddling'. Although I thought the information is good, I feel the book is too limited in scope. The same is true for German books. We identified some German books that address some of the same principles that you do. Yet, these books are limited in scope as they would only deal with sleep problems and would, for instance, ignore feeding problems. We feel no German or Dutch book comes close to the excellence of your book.
Looking back at our despair, we feel almost obliged to ensure that a book like yours is translated into German or in Dutch.
I hope you don't mind me writing to thank-you so much for the help your book 'The New Contented Little Baby Book' brought into the life of my family.
May I tell the story? My son, up to the age of 4 months, was breastfed on demand, had colic, and by the age of four months was waking almost hourly at night, and sleeping a lot of the day. As a first-time parent I had no idea how to bring a routine into our lives and I was finding it very difficult to cope.
Then my health visitor offered to come and see if she could help. My husband and I have been Christians for six years and so the day before the health visitor came, we prayed a simple prayer to Jesus and asked that He would give wisdom to the health visitor, because he knew we could not cope.
The next day the health visitor introduced your book to me. She said that the previous evening she'd been reading your book in bed, and was struck by how much 'Robert's' story was like ours. And so we set a routine according to your book. Of course you know the results: within less than a week our son was sleeping through the night and now has a beautiful 6am to 6pm routine, with no problems. He is now 18 months and I have followed the book in all the changes of his young and wonderful life. I weaned him according to "The Contented Little Baby Book of Weaning" and I still include many of your recipes in his diet (in fact, I've just frozen a batch of minestrone soup!).
Anyway, I write to thank you for bringing so much help to us when we were really desperate.
I do really want you to know that my first grandson is being brought up by my brilliant barrister daughter-in-law (retired for the moment) according to your 'The New Contented Little Baby Book' - and he is . No-one can believe how happy he is and yet she is following your suggestions about food and rest to the minute. Everyone is delighted.
Just a note to thank you for helping me get my life back. Three weeks ago, having the time to write was not possible and now, after following your routines, my ten-week-old daughter is wonderful - happier, more alert and so is her mum! Should you want any details for your next book, I would be happy to tell you how she went from having very little sleep to the amount you suggest!
I have wanted to write to you for some time now, to tell you how wonderful your book is and to thank you for saving my husband and my sanity. A friend handed me your book when our son was three weeks old. I was sitting crying and exhausted and wishing I had never become pregnant. My son was at the breast feeding almost constantly and screaming in between times. We were another victim of 'demand feeding' advice. That day, our son didn't sleep for 12 hours and I was convinced there was something physically wrong with him. We took him to the hospital. Of course there was nothing wrong, (except that he was overfed and poorly parented) so that very night at midnight we read your book and started your routines. The next day it was like we had been given a new baby! Now he is seven months old and is happy and contented. He sleeps so well I am the envy of all the mums in my playgroup! I hope the sales of your book are doing well in Australia, I am certainly helping by recommending it to all my friends having babies.
So, Miss Ford, thank you once again, I can't imagine what might have happened if I had not received your book when I did. I am a nurse but now I am thinking of doing Midwifery, so I can help prevent new mums from falling into the same traps I did.
Thank you for your books. I am writing to share another success story of a happy 'Gina baby'. I am the mother of a 7 ½ month old baby girl. Since she was two weeks old I have been following your routines. Although she has only been sleeping through the night from 13 weeks, she now sleeps 12 hours a night and is a very happy little baby.
As you are probably aware, there is a significant backlash against the concept of routines for small babies, which has made it very difficult to even admit I was following your method, let alone stand up for them. However, we have persevered. Last month, I took my daughter to the US to spend Thanksgiving with her relatives. I was very apprehensive about the trip, from the plane journey to the uncertainty of taking her to a new place with many new people. I decided to follow your advice and try and put her in her routine in local time from Day 1. It worked brilliantly. She went down beautifully as soon as I put her in the travel cot, woke at 1am on the first night and 2am on the second night. Both times, she went back to sleep after having a drink and a little play, and from then on she slept for 12 or 13 hours every night. On our return, she again settled easily back into her routine within 3 days and was happy and contented throughout the trip.
The experience has really vindicated your routines, as well as our decision to follow them, even when it has made socialising impossible and when other new mums have been very dismissive of the whole concept or strict routines. Thank you for sharing your experiences and expertise. They have made out entry into the world of parenthood a calmer and more enjoyable process than we thought possible.
I have been working for the last four years at Random House in London and had a copy of Contented Baby on my shelf at home throughout my pregnancy and after the birth of my baby boy in August. It was highly recommended to me from those people working in Ebury/Vermilion who had babies. However I only started really using it and following it two weeks ago. My son was exhausting me - I was up almost every two hours during the night and the days were long and tough as I now realise that although he was feeding at regular intervals, I had no proper sleep structure or idea of a pattern to follow. Two weeks ago I had had enough of bad advice, and began following your routine to the letter.
I just really wanted to write and say that in only 2 days my life completely changed and my son was following the routines almost perfectly. Last night he slept through to 5am without waking (it seems to me nothing short of a miracle) and is lengthening his sleep time every night. I now have time for myself during the day, and love being a mother to my son who is a completely different sunny, good humoured baby.
You probably get a lot of mums writing to you with expressions of thanks; I wanted to add my thanks too because it is no exaggeration to say that our situation has been transformed by following your advice, and I wish I had used your routines from the beginning; it would have saved a lot of heartache and tears for everyone.
I discovered CLB when I was 3 months pregnant with my first son. I followed Gina's advise on every aspect of the CLB book from the moment he was born, and he was consistently sleeping through the night at 6 weeks old. I can count on one hand the number of times I've needed to go to him in the night since then, and he's 3.5 years old. Without exception, friends, family, and health officials always commented on what a happy and contented little baby he was. I breastfed him, and followed Gina's advice on how to establish a good milk supply. I never even had sore nipples, let alone cracked and bleeding ones. He really thrived and his weight gain was always well in excess of the weekly recommended amounts.
Naturally, I followed CLB with our second son, Harry. He was also sleeping through the night at 6 weeks, and at 18 months I've only needed to go to him 3 times since then. He has never woken early from his lunchtime nap. I've found it even easier to follow the routines the second time around because I had none of the "first-time mum" anxieties. I decided to breastfeed him and he didn't even lose any birth weight and gained 5oz in the first 4 days . I'm still breastfeeding the little piggy and he's nearly 19 months old
I cannot praise Gina's methods and her books highly enough. I know that there is criticism that it's not a good idea to put a newborn baby into a routine, but I think it's so important for mum and baby to have a routine for feeds and sleeping as soon as possible. My two sons are proof that babies can be happy, contented and sleeping through the night from an early age if put in a routine from birth. They are like chalk and cheese and yet they've been almost identical with sleeping through the night, dropping naps, etc.
I have all of Gina's books. Contended Little Baby is nothing short of amazing.
I started following Gina's routines as soon as my first baby was born. She is now nearly 2 and a half. I also have a little boy, who is 7 and a half months, and he has been on the routines since birth.
I liked Gina's CLB book because it was one of the only books that I had read which gave very specific advice - which, as a first time mother, I felt I really needed. I never understood those mothers who say "oh - it all comes naturally - you just learn what to do as you go along" - I am sure that without the book, I would have really struggled - wondering all the time whether I was getting it right.
Even before giving birth to my daughter, I felt that I had some idea of the principles of following a routine and the benefits that a routine could bring. One thing was certain, I didn't want to cope with messy, unpredictable days and nights - this just wouldn't have suited me - I like to be organised and I felt that the Gina routines would give me the element of control that I needed.
At first, I just followed Gina's advice roughly; however, as time went on, I realised that the closer I got to the suggested routines, and the more I paid attention to her advice, the more contented and happier my baby was. By the time she was 3 or 4 months, I was following the books religiously. From the age of 3 months, my daughter has slept from 7pm-7am almost without exception. As a baby, friends of mine were amazed at how reliable a sleeper she was! I am convinced that this is down to Gina's sensible advice regarding the routines, and also regarding feeding.
I found the weaning book invaluable and don't know how other mothers get by without it. I really would have had no idea which milk feeds to drop first and what sort of timings to stick to for mealtimes! I blame the weaning book with my pre-occupation for serving fresh home cooked food to both of my children all of the time! Which is time consuming - but worth it.
When I hear other mothers talk about how they are feeding their babies all night long - and how they are struggle with weaning etc, my heart goes out to them, as I feel that they just haven't been given the right advice. There is so much unreliable advice out there - and having a baby who is discontented and waking up frequently during the night, must be so tiring. Gina's methods are tried and tested and I urge other mothers to give it a go!
One thing that really strikes me about the CLB book (and in fact, all of Gina's books) is the aspect of common sense which is really the backbone of it all. I bet I am not the only one who, when reading the books, thinks ..."ahh -...yes why didn't I think of that!!"
I try not to be a CLB bore, and I accept that all mothers choose how they are going to bring their baby up, but having said that, I still think that all babies should be delivered into their mothers' arms along with a copy of the CLB book! That way there would be a lot more CLBs for us mothers to enjoy!
We started the Gina Ford plan at about 4 month's. Prior to this we were suffering sleepless nights. Colicky, unhappy and unsettled baby and I was …. well, suffering from lack of sleep, anxiety, despondency to name but a few. A friend told me about the routines and I thought hey, I'd got nothing to loose. The next day I went out and got the book. That night I'd practically read the book cover to cover. The next morning I was raring to go. Practically overnight it transformed all of our lives. My son became much more contented. My life was easier. I could spend quality time with my son as well as with my husband. I also developed a confidence that I was previously lacking. It helped me bond with my little boy. He's now coming on for 2 years and we have another on the way. Without the routines, I doubt very much that we'd be having a 2nd baby so soon. Parenthood is the hardest thing I have ever had to do and the routines helped my husband and myself adjust to it that much easier. It's a joy to be a parent.
We bought 'The Contented Little Baby Book' when I was pregnant and as soon as we read it, my husband and I felt it was right for us. For a long while at our pre-birth classes we had both felt that their push towards 'demand feeding' was not for us. I guess our gut feeling was that this would lead to a us being all over the place not knowing what was coming next and ultimately to a child who always expected their own demands met despite what worked for us. Also, we both run our own businesses and we both had to get back to work very quickly and so a happy baby on a routine was our aim!
So we prepared for our baby with the book in hand, which was very helpful - we hardly knew one end of a baby from another and the book 'held our hands' throughout the process. We were able to read up on what we should try to aim for in the first months ahead of time.
When my son was born I had lots of problems with breast feeding, so ended up expressing all his milk for the first few months. I also became quite ill with mastitis and had various other post-birth complications and the book actually kept my husband and I sane in these frantic first few weeks. However my baby slipped easily into the routines.
At 4 weeks old, he suddenly developed reflux which made sticking to the routines difficult so we had to make a few adaptations of our own, but again the routines were fantastic as a guide for what we were aiming for.
My son is now nearly 8 months old, the reflux is gone, and despite some problems with weaning at first (due I think to the reflux, our using the wrong type of formula and us losing the plot a bit trying to get any food into him at all!) he is now right back on routine. He is so much happier since we got him back onto his routine and is becoming the prefect baby - always happy and smiling, enjoying his food and sleeping well. This is all thanks to the book and also to the experts from the team helping me through some recent problems.
I was at home one day and flicked the channel to GMTV where Eamon Holmes was talking about how fantastic the CLB book was. As he was so emphatic and excited about it, I was intrigued and decided to buy it. It's the best book I've ever bought!
Honestly, the book is our saviour (not only for the detailed routines but for all the advice it offers as well). Since day 3, my baby has been on the routines and everything has been fantastic. She slept through the night from 5 weeks (huge blessing as I need my beauty sleep) and is always a pleasure to be around during the day as she isn't too tired. She has been so good under the routine that I have managed to combine looking after her along with studying and working as I know that she won't wake up early from any of her naps.
I know that I'm a better mother for having put her on the routine, and can't thank Gina and the team enough for all of their advice, wisdom and support.
The book and the website are fantastic and I wholeheartedly recommend them to everybody.
Even though I had bought the CLB book when pregnant, once my son was born the midwives and various family friends put me off giving it a go. By the time he was 6 weeks old we were in a real mess. I was fraught and had no idea how to cope with a baby who didn't seem to ever stop crying. I was feeling like a bad mother who could not interpret her baby's needs.
One night my husband and I agreed that we had to give the book a go - we were lost and despite the reassurances that our son would find his own routine soon, we were not so convinced. All it took was for me to start the day at 7am! Within 2 days he was in the routine and suddenly I knew what his cries meant. As a lover of routines myself, suddenly I felt we were back in control (and we had our evenings back!)
I look back on those early weeks with horror. The next time round (and I do hope there will be a next time) we will use Gina's routines from day one.
Gina and the website have given me tremendous support and helped me understand the most precious thing in my life - my child.
What would I do without Gina? The answer is I really don't know.
I had a tough time of it in the early weeks with not only an emergency C section (whole ambulance thing etc) but then my C section wound opened back up and had to go back in hospital! This with a colic/silent reflux baby who when was awake cried, PND and trying to breast feed was a recipe for disaster.
Enough was enough at 6 weeks when I picked up 'THE BOOK' and started on the routines and her advice - never looked back.
The feeding problems stopped and he slept so much better.
For the first time I knew what he wanted and was able to tell myself, for example - "he isn't crying because he is hungry as just fed him, I can now tell he is tired as has been awake for X hours and he needs X hours sleep".
We bonded instantly and I enjoyed my newborn baby and my baby enjoyed his mummy.
Most importantly of all, what it gives you is 'confidence'. The confidence to know what your baby needs and wants and that you are a great mummy.
My Mum bought me the CLBB when I was pregnant, though it wasn't until my baby was six weeks old that I decided to give it a go. We were demand feeding up to this point. Never again! Within two days he had 'dropped into' the routine and we've never looked back.
As a first time mum with absolutely no experience of babies I found the advice given a godsend . Although I loved my son, I just wasn't prepared for the upheaval - both physical and emotional. Gina was there by my side, helping me through one of the hardest periods of my life.
My happy, contented, charismatic three-year-old son is the result of Gina's experience coupled with my regained confidence.
My baby daughter (due in July) will be a contented baby as well and though I have my moments, I know am more than capable and I am looking forward being a mum of two.
If my Mum were still here, she would be smiling now as this is the daughter that doesn't 'do' babies - and this is all thanks to her foresight in buying the book (knowing full well that I wouldn't listen to direct advice!) and Gina for writing it!
When I was pregnant, friends of ours who had just had a baby, highly recommended the new CLB book to us. I borrowed her copy to get a glimpse of what Gina's methods entailed and we decided that this was the way to go. We now own our very own Gina library. The first three weeks of my son's life was a bit hectic, with an emergency c - section, in-laws, feeding issues and other visitors, but once everything settled down, (I was getting pretty anxious to make it all work by then) we gave the book a really good go. It was at 4 weeks that everything fell into place. Breast feeding finally worked, naps were getting easier, I was more confident, and my baby began sleeping from 10.30pm to 7.00am at 9 weeks old. (Approx 6 weeks after starting the routines).
The best thing for me when following Gina's advice and routines is that in the early days, I could work out why he was crying - I knew what came next. He never had any sleep associations and literally spat the dummy out at three months on his own.
My friends have all commented at how "good" and happy he is, and how "calm" and "confident" I am as a new mother. This book is amazing. Gina really knows her stuff. They say that babies don't come with instruction manuals - well, now they can; Gina's book tells you what to expect, when to expect it, and how to deal with it. My dad keeps telling me to enjoy it while it lasts as "He's just not normal; babies don't do that" he says. Well, according to Gina they do and mine has done everything to the letter that Gina says will happen in CLB. And the best part is, if I have a problem, I can just look it up in the book and find out how to deal with it. (Or come onto the website and ask).
I bought the Contented Little Baby Book when I was 6 months pregnant. I had never heard of Gina Ford before, I simply bought the book it was the only book at the bookshop which had routines!
I read the book 2/3 times before my daughter was born, highlighted all the key things I thought would be relevant and used the first chapter as a staple of the things I needed to buy in preparation. I had every intention of using the book as my guide.
When my daughter was born, the hospital gave me a BIG lecture about the Gina Ford routines, informing me that it was detrimental to my baby's growth, establishing breast feeding, extremely stressful to stick to etc. A nd in my tired, weary state I listened to what they said and started to demand feed and let my baby set her "own routine".
By her 2 week birthday, I told my husband that I didn't want to be near her and had packed my bags ready to leave. With some persuasion, he convinced me to stay another week by suggesting that we use the Gina Ford book (he now tells me he was desperate and would have said anything to get me to stay!!!)
The first couple of days were hard going, not because of the routines, but my resentment of having to stay. However, the more I followed/read the routine the more I felt like I was getting control back and knew what to do.
As someone said before, the book really is about common sense. The biggest lesson for me was the times that babies "may be" able to stay awake for. But the best benefit was knowing what I should be aiming fo,r eg between 11.30-2.00 baby is sleeping, baby can stay awake for up to XX hours et. Before the book I was completely and utterly confused.
My daughter is a very contented baby. She has never taken a dummy (not stating this is wrong, just what we have experienced), goes to sleep by herself, slept in her cot from 6 weeks, slept 7-7 from 10 weeks, has no sleep association/problems and is very, very active!
At six weeks my health visitor "reluctantly" admitted that Gina Ford had turned me around. At 6 weeks she had me pegged to go to the doctors as a PND sufferer. At 16 weeks, she admitted that she had me down as a 6-8 week breastfeeder (I am still breastfeeding now).
I find it hard to believe the criticism that Gina gets. Has anyone ever thought to invest some time in finding out why mums follow the routines? Or, to ask mums who follow Gina's routines what they think? Or, considered why it is such a world-wide bought book?
I believe that a happy mum is a happy mother and a happy mother equates to a happy child. I really, truly, totally & utterly believe that it is the routines, common sense and this website that saved me.
My husband has even asked if we have shares in Gina Ford cos we have all of her books & every sentence I starts with "but Gina says this....." or "the forum said we should try that....."!
I love Gina Ford and her range of Contented Little Baby Books; I have them all and they have been an invaluable source or advice and encouragement to me during my baby's life so far.
I don't know how I would have managed dealing with a reflux baby and post natal depression without her books, her website and all the wonderful friends I have made there and also her telephone calls.
I recommend Gina to all my friends having babies who comment on how contented my baby daughter is.
My sister-in-law bought me a copy of CLB when I told her I was pregnant, and wrote inside "Here's a copy of my bible - every mother should have one", and as I progress on my journey through motherhood I have to agree. I have all of Gina's books except for Potty Training (all in good time!) and my copies of CLB and the weaning guide are very well thumbed. I didn't start following the routines until I was 4 days in; a painful 20 hour labour and the shock of finally becoming a parent set me back a little, but following four sleepless nights and difficulties in breastfeeding my husband and I were in agreement - a routine needed to be established, and I haven't put my copy of CLB down since. I think the routines are great - they appeal to me as I like to be organised and don't believe that babies should rule the roost. My daughter was sleeping through the night from 6 weeks old, and has taken each new development stage in her stride. She eats well, is happy and sociable - a true CLB. I love the website and am constantly surprised at the wealth of tips, advice and support that it generates - if I have a problem, it's the first place I come . I also feel like I'm able to give something back - it's nice to share experiences with like-minded parents.
I am a huge advocate of Gina's methods, and have recommended her to friends, midwives and health visitors alike. What can I say - to me, Gina is a saint
What can I say apart from that following Gina's routines has bought some normality to our lives? It is very hard having a sick child, but knowing when he will be hungry, sleepy etc is better than just guessing and making my baby son even more miserable.....he is a contented little baby and I am glad I kept at the routine!!
Als,o this website is great loads of people with great advice and tips and not forgetting I's a real pick-me-up!!!!
I started using the CLB routines when my baby was four weeks old and I've never looked back. The routines gave us the structure, direction and confidence the current mantra of demand feeding simply could not provide. Within a week of implementing Gina's routines, our screaming, unsettled baby became calm and predictable and we had back our sanity. The routines enabled us to better enjoy our baby and allowed us time together as a couple. Best of all, Gina's advice helped me to breastfeed successfully - something I continue to do.
Six months on, our baby is content and thriving, and I'm a calm and confident parent. The book does exactly what it says on the cover!
Thank you, Gina
Our first son, now two and a half was in intensive care for the first 2 months of his life so we didn't get a chance to start a routine etc. When he was 4 months old I found the book and started on the routines. It was a godsend. I'm a very organised person, so it's made for me really. Now baby no 2 is here and 5 months old. Again, I have been following the routines since he was 5 days old and he is such a contented little baby......I think Gina is great and would recommend the books and website to anyone. FAB FAB FAB
The first week after my son was born was one of the toughest weeks. He swapped day for night and was a real snacker. I ended up breastfeeding him for lots of short periods throughout the night. I could not believe that this was the way to bring up a baby. I was in despair with the whole thing
My husband got me CLB book (on recommendation from his sister) and initially I had my doubts on the routine. But I decided I had nothing to lose in trying it and in any case it gave me something to focus on rather than spending my times feeling utterly hopeless and depressed about the whole thing.
That was one of the best decisions I've ever made. After trying the routine for one day, my baby actually slept for a good chunk during the night and we all got some rest and Isaac was taking proper feeds rather than snacking !
From then on I've never looked back, I just wished I bought it and studied it more before my baby arrived !