We are having big problems with our four year girl at night.
She is in the horrible habit of waking up and choosing to perform a big, loud, FAKE cry designed to wake the household (we have a 19 month old too) and make some adult come running to her “or else”.
The “or else” is that she will continue to become louder and louder and louder so much so that not only is the 19 month old awake but she becomes distressed and cries and is then very difficult to settle. These episodes regularly wake us all between 1 and 3 hours depending on how bad it is.
The most frustrating part of all this is that NOTHING seems to work.
She seems to care about NOTHING.
We have used rewards charts – fair and sensible ones with real rewards. These have been the only thing that has ever worked at all (temporarily) but now they seem to have lost all power.
We have tried removal of nice events (such as going roller skating which she loves) but she barely cares at all. A raised eyebrow for a second and that’s about it.
We have tried removal of favourite toys – but the care factor is zero.
She gets no tv on the day after a ‘night episode’. She doesn’t like it but it’s not enough to deter her.
Please realize she is in no way over-indulged and never has been. Our dd is a very bright and intelligent girl who, by day, is quite pleasant and fairly well behaved.
I don’t give treat foods on a daily basis so I can’t remove anything like that. It isn’t there to remove.
So in short, our otherwise very good and sweet girl is a monster at night… and does not care what reward you offer or what you threaten to remove.
I am clean out of ideas. And the wakings continue. We are so tired. We feel abused. And we feel powerless because nothing we ever try works.
Please share ideas or methods you think are worth a shot. She is so stoic. And also, you should know that 'reasons' she has for the noise are things such as "my pj' sleeves were up too high." I'm a stay at home Mum who keeps her close and plays with her... she goes to pre-prep and loves it and has friends. I can't see any kind of disturbance during her waking life. It all looks pretty ideal to me. Her father is wonderful and homelife is sturdy.