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Throwing Away the Sleep Stigma

Hey there, tired mamas! I'm Danielle Cyrenne, and today, I'm beyond excited to share my journey into the world of sleep coaching with you all. So grab a cup of coffee (or let's be real, maybe something stronger) and settle in as I work with you through sorting through the misinformation that has been fed to us about sleep coaching/training or whatever you want to call it!

Let's rewind a bit. With a master's degree in social work from Wayne State University, my career path has been anything but conventional. From working in secure facilities in Detroit with youth to providing therapy online and in private practice, community health centres and children's agencies, I've worn many hats over the years. But it wasn't until I became a mom to my two amazing kiddos, Everley and Brooks, that my true calling began to take shape.

You see, like many of you, I've experienced firsthand the overwhelming pressure and guilt that often accompanies parenthood. The constant barrage of social media posts telling us how we should parent, what motherhood should look like—it can be exhausting and confusing, to say the least. And when it came to sleep coaching, I'll admit, I had my reservations.

But, what I know to be true, is that I am a great mother- one who is always mindful of what is

best for my family, be it hard or easy. I know that I am responsive, and warm, and sensitive to my children's needs. I know that I delight in them (probably too much for their liking!) throughout the entire day. I know that when they are down, sad or hurt- I am there for them. And what I also know is that I am doing the best I can as a parent with what I know. I also know the effects that lack of sleep had on my family- my daughter was so exhausted as she woke up each time Brooks woke through the night. That was almost every hour. She was falling asleep at school and there was a shift in her emotions. Brooks wouldn't eat well, as he was too tired. He had a hard time sleeping through the day and the night. As for myself and my husband- we were living in survival mode. We were so exhausted, we did our very best in everything we did; however, I will speak for myself to say that I was NOT my best. Not my best as a parent, wife, friend.

Do we consider these effects? The impact of this on our relationship of our children? The shaping of the context in which the child lives and how that impacts their mental and physical health?

But armed with my background in attachment theory and a deep-seated desire to promote healthy family dynamics, I dove headfirst into the world of sleep coaching. And let me tell you, it was eye-opening. I quickly realized that sleep coaching isn't just about letting baby cry it out—it's so much more than that. Not only was it not what society was telling me it was, but it truly is a misunderstood support that could make deep-seated changes in people's lives- parents', babies, children..... mental health, emotional health, attachment relationship!

I tried sleep coaching initially- it worked wonders. Then, I had to put Brooks into daycare which is when we started to see our difficulties with sleep come back again. It was at this point that I wanted to learn more about sleep coaching- all of the techniques, strategies and knowledge that it had to offer. I decided to become a certified paediatric sleep consultant, myself.

One thing you should know about me is that I love to learn. I love a good challenge! If I become interested in something I want to learn all about it- research, podcasts, courses. I have spent hours and hours researching attachment, different techniques & strategies, and learning about the biology behind sleep. Through my work, I discovered a plethora of baby-led and parent-led sleep practices that honour both scientific research and parental intuition. From gentle techniques to practical tips for fostering a restful environment, I've made it my mission to provide families with the support and guidance they need to thrive.

And let's address the elephant in the room: the stigma surrounding sleep coaching. Trust me, I've heard it all—the judgment, the skepticism, the fear mongering. But here's the thing: sleep coaching isn't about forcing your child to conform to some arbitrary standard or about abandoning them in a time of need to 'learn a new skill' or 'self soothing'. It's about finding what works best for your family and empowering you to make informed decisions.

  • Sleep Environment

  • Safe Sleep

  • Nutritional Needs

  • Biology of Sleep

  • Age and Developmental Stage and Needs

  • Wake Windows

  • Naps

  • Emotional Needs

  • Maternal Mental Health and Your Relationship

  • Routines & Schedules

  • Emotions in Baby

  • Sensory Processing

  • Red Flags that Make Sleep Difficult

  • Lifestyle

  • Normal Infant Sleep

  • Sleep Space Transitions

  • Temperament

  • False Starts

  • Split Nights

  • Early Morning Rising

  • Middle of the Night Wakings

  • Nighttime Weaning

  • Changing & Shifting Sleep Associations

  • Connecting with Community Resources

These are some to name a few!

So, whether you're struggling with sleepless nights, overwhelmed with all of the information being thrown at you or simply looking for some guidance, know that you're not alone. Through my blog posts, online courses, and one-on-one consultations, I'm here to support you every step of the way.

If you're curious to learn more about my journey or the services I offer, head on over to my About Danielle page. And hey, if you're expecting or knee-deep in the trenches of parenthood, don't miss out on my online course and monthly live seminars—they're packed with invaluable insights and strategies.

Remember, mamas, there's no shame in seeking help or exploring new avenues to improve your family's well-being. Together, we can toss out the sleep stigma and create a world where every family gets the rest they deserve. Where you can follow you intuition without the interruption of judgement, shame, or information overwhelm.

Until next time, sweet dreams!


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