My Top Five Posts of 2015

2015 has been a great year for all things gentle parenting and I really feel that we are nearing the point of mainstream awareness now, a trend I honestly believe will continue to build in 2016. I will certainly be trying my hardest to make it so and I know many of you are super passionate about spreading ‘the word’, so a big thank you for all of your efforts and support too!

This has definitely been the ‘year of sleep’ for me. After the release of ‘The Gentle Sleep Book’ my writing this year has focussed heavily on all things sleep and this is reflected in my most popular blog posts (to date, by far my most popular post ever written still continue to be the one I wrote about the myth of ‘self soothing’).

I expect this emphasis may change a little next year, with the release of my fourth book ‘The Gentle Parenting Book’ in March 2016 and while I am busy writing ‘The Gentle Discipline Book’ which is due for release in 2017.

That said, my fifth book ‘Why Your Baby’s Sleep Matters’ sees a return to nocturnal parenting, when it is released in April 2016. I expect to write about a few of the controversial new topics covered in it (including the truth of SIDS and why what we believe about it may be incorrect and why modern day baby experts are clueless when it comes to naps).

In 2015 my blog posts have reached almost three million people, wow!

These are the top five from 2015 in terms of readership, which one was your favourite?

  1. How Long Should Babies and Toddlers Sleep For?

This super popular post centred around the infographic below. I hope it has helped some parents to realise that their babies and toddlers are sleeping normally!

average baby sleep, average toddler sleep, average baby nap, average toddler nap, how long should baby sleep for? how long should toddler sleep for?

Read more, and see the picture in high res, here:


2. Ten Common Toddler Myths You Might Believe, and Why you Shouldn’t!

There are so many parenting myths in circulation in society. I’m sure you’ve come across many yourself.

Many are obviously myths and therefore easy to ignore. Others however seem far more ingrained and sound far more plausible. The plausibility and popularity of some of the top parenting myths cause a great deal of misunderstanding, and often stress, for parents of toddlers.

These are my top toddler parenting myths:

1. Toddlers should all be sleeping through the night.

You had a year of caring for a sleepless baby 24/7 surely, surely toddlers sleep all night? Wrong…….

Read more here:



3. One Simple Way to Improve your Baby or Child’s Sleep Today!

Did you know that millions of parents around the world are making one very simple, but huge, mistake that is potentially inhibiting their child’s sleep (no matter their age) and contributing to difficult bedtimes and frequent night waking.

This mistake is perpetuated by thousands of nursery product manufacturers around the world. In fact when you realise what it is you will be shocked at the products on sale that only add to, rather than aid, the problem.

baby toddler asleep with teddy bear

What is it?


Read more here:


4. Ten Reasons to Not Sleep Train your Baby.

Are friends, relatives and professionals telling you that you should sleep train your baby? Warning you of dire consequences if you don’t?

Are you considering sleep training because you are exhausted and desperate for a little more sleep?

Here are ten reasons why you shouldn’t do it!

1. Sleep Training Misunderstands Normal Baby Sleep

Those who advocate sleep training misunderstand what normal baby sleep should look like. Babies and young children do not sleep like adults, they are not meant to and for a very good reason…………

Read more here:

night terror, nightmares, parasomnias, night terrors in children, nightmares in children, night terrors in babies, nightmares in babies, how to help night terrors, how to solve night terrors, how to treat night terrors


5. Why Babies Hate Cots and Cribs – and What to do Instead.

Of all the parenting problems I am asked for help with, the following is the most common:

“how do I get my baby to sleep in his cot?”

“I want my baby to sleep in her crib, but she won’t, how do I make her like it?”

“I just want to be able to put him down for naps, help!”

I’ll let you into a secret.

Babies HATE cots and cribs. 

(ps for American readers, in England we call cribs cots – just to confuse you!).

Babies even tend to hate cosleeper cribs (yes, I did say that and no, I have never and would never buy one myself). Most parents I speak with who have a cosleeper crib say something like the following:

“We have a cosleeper, but he never goes in it, he sleeps in my arms instead”.

“We got a cosleeper crib, but she just won’t sleep in it, it’s just an expensive place to store blankets and other stuff”………….

Read more here:

Once again, thank you all for your support this year. If you’re in the UK, I would love to meet some of you on my upcoming Gentle Sleep and Gentle Parenting workshops!




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About SarahOckwell-Smith

Sarah Ockwell-Smith, Parenting author and mother to four.
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