Sleep training in an apartment. It sounds impossible and inconsiderate towards neighbors. But did you know that there are some things you can do to make the process go pleasantly? 

Sleep training by itself can be a challenging task. It can be a double challenge when you live in an apartment or any other living space with shared walls. 

Teaching your little one how to sleep independently can leave you exhausted and sleep-deprived. But it can be troublesome for your next-door neighbors, too. 

So, what do you do when you have a crying baby at home that needs to be sleep trained? Do you talk to your neighbors? Will they expect you to offer some kind of a gift basket?

Here are four amazing ideas about what you can do when you’re sleep training in an apartment and maintain a good relationship with your dear neighbors. 

Tell your neighbors what’s happening

The kind thing to do is to be straightforward with your neighbors. You all live together in a shared space, so they deserve to know if their nights would be interrupted by a crying baby. 

Explain what sleep training is (if they don’t know) and ensure them it’s a temporary thing. Say how a few nights of sleep training are a way better alternative than having a child that can’t soothe himself back to sleep in the long-term.

Talking to them will mean you’re respectful towards them and you take their feelings into account. Failing to inform them can leave a bad impression that could be hard to mend. 

You can either go door to door or leave a note that says: 

Dear neighbors, 

Apartment number X here,

We want to inform you kindly that we’ll be sleep training our baby this weekend. You can expect to hear more crying than usual for a few nights. This is only temporary and shouldn’t last for more than a few days. Thank you for understanding. If there’s anything you should need, please don’t hesitate to let us know. 

Here’s an example of how one family informed their neighbors they’re sleep training. Heads up: it’s hilarious!

sleep training in an apartment

Consider quieter sleep training methods in an apartment.

You’ll be happy to hear that are some gentler alternatives to the cry-it-out method if that’s something you want to try with your baby. Here are some great options: 

The Fading Method

The Fading Method is a gentler technique that involves giving your toddler the hugs and cuddles he needs but gradually reducing the amount of time you’re in his room. 

Although it may take several weeks for this method to work, don’t give up. Eventually, your child will learn to start falling asleep on his own without any cuddles or hugs.

The Camping Out Method

The Camping Out Method is another gentler alternative that it’s a good choice if you’re sleeping training in an apartment. 

This method involves putting your baby to sleep and placing a chair next to his bed. If he starts fussing or crying, you give him verbal reassurance from the chair or even pat him once in a while.

Every two or three nights, you move the chair a little bit further away from his bed. The end goal is to teach your child to fall asleep without you in the room.

Related: Sleep Training Not Working: 7 Things You May Be Doing Wrong

sleep training in an apartment

Move your baby’s crib away from any shared walls

Sleep training can disturb your neighbors, especially those with whom you share apartment walls. 

If you have enough rooms, another good idea is to let the baby sleep in a room with a non-adjoining wall. If that’s not possible and you know the layout of your neighbors’ apartment, try moving your little one in a room that’s closer to their kitchen or bathroom rather than their bedroom.

Doing so will give some space between your crying infant and your neighbors. Offering a cute little basket is a kind gesture, but making sure your little one doesn’t disturb their sleep is more meaningful.

Offer a simple and kind gift

Here’s another beautiful idea: give your neighbors a thank-you basket. The basket can contain anything you think would be meaningful to your neighbors, such as a gift card, earplugs, cookies, a bottle of wine, or a hand-made gift. 

A nice gesture goes a long way. Offering them a gift will soften their hearts and assure them you’re considering their well-being.

Related: Tips for Sleep-Training a Baby When You’re a Working Parent

Final word

When it comes to sleep training in an apartment, it’s simple: make the process easier for everyone by being honest and respectful.

You might not be the only parent in the building, so you can expect some neighbors to empathize and be extra supportive. 

Good luck!