When you have one child, you do just about anything to not wake the baby.

But then you have another child.  And now you have extra work to not wake the baby.

Here’s the thing:

Children learn how to sleep.  

So a child who is born in a really hot humid climate, will know how to sleep in a hot humid climate. (My children cannot sleep if it is over 75º however…)

A child who is born into a noisy household, will know how to sleep though all the noise.

A child who is born with a barking dog, will know how to sleep even when the dog is barking all of the time.

A child who is born with a twin will be able to sleep though the other child’s wailing.

It is a common frustration for mothers with toddlers and babies to feel like they need to indulge the toddler’s every whim to keep them from waking the baby, but they aren’t doing anyone a favor.  The new baby will learn how to sleep with the other child crying/ screaming.  And when I say “learn” I am implying that there will be times that the baby does wake due to the noise.  These times will be super frustrating, but just like anything and everything with having children, “this too shall pass.”

So when your older child is screaming because you have set the limit of no more milk at bedtime, then stick with that limit even though it will wake the baby. 

And when you have a bunch of people over to your house, let the older children be loud even though that will wake the baby.  

When you stop breast feeding one child at night which causes a lot of tears and might wake the other child, stick to your new plan even though it creates a lot of disruption.  The other child will learn to get through this as well.  

We can do hard things and we can learn new things.

I was fortunate enough to have two babies that woke each other and I learned from watching them, that they learn to sleep through each other’s screams.  Did they wake sometimes from the noise?  They sure did, but then they also learned to sleep through the noise and eventually became great sleepers.  It taught me that we have trained the adults to create a sterile sleeping environment that doesn’t emulate real life and once we realize that kids can learn to sleep through anything, then we can hold boundaries for our other kids. 

So the take away from all of this- is that you will wake the baby. The baby will survive and everyone will eventually get sleep.  And babies who learn to sleep through all of the noise often become better sleepers in the end.