I had read that 15-20 minutes of crying isn't going to scar a baby for life . . . I just wasn't sure if I was going to be able to lay there right beside her for that long listening to her sad little cry for 15-20 minutes . . . or 5 minutes for that matter. So, I took her basket to her room and put it in her crib and turned on the monitor and went back to my bed. A bit later the crying started. I lowered the volume on the monitor slightly and waited. After five minutes, she was asleep . . . without a pacifier. (I had also read that sometimes babies need to exert that energy through crying to sleep soundly, and when you keep picking them up, you rob them of that).
She stayed in her room the WHOLE night, like a big girl. It was good for us as parents because when she slept right beside the bed anytime she made a peep, we'd pat her, or pick her up, or stick a pacifier in her mouth. But when you hear her little whimpers through the monitor, and your only decision is to wait it out or to get out of bed and walk to her room at 2am, it makes it a little easier to wait. And she has never slept so well . . . after the earlier episode that is.
Now the question is when the crying lasts for longer than 5 minutes . . . what do we do?