Distinguish between wants and needs

Seeing your sweetheart’s face wrinkle and hearing her cry when she doesn’t get what she wants can be difficult, we know. But you can expect this reaction more than once when implementing your sleep strategy.

However, the key to getting your child to sleep, and all other aspects of his life, is to remember that ants are not necessities. As a parent, you make sure your child has everything he needs, but that doesn’t mean you give him everything he wants.

During the first months of your baby’s life, you can easily distinguish his wants from his needs, because he needs you for everything! However, sometime around that 4-6 month mark, she doesn’t need you as much as you think.

With each passing month, your little one can do more, understand more, and become more independent. However, she is also used to being with you, her partner on call around the clock, and she is not going to give up on that arrangement easily.

Like a child in a candy store, your baby has trouble knowing the difference between what he wants from you and what he needs from you. And as a loving, caring, and very tired parent, you don’t always know the difference either. But if you can make this distinction between wants and needs and do it early in the game, your life and your child’s life can be happier.

Of course, the wants and needs of older children are easier to resolve than those of infants and toddlers. (In fact, we describe different sleep strategies for children of different ages and stages because what works for an 8-month-old can be very different from what works for a 3-year-old.) But making the distinction is key to your dream strategy. To help you tell the difference, here is a quick rundown of your little one’s needs vs. their wants.

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