Ok, so my toddler *needs* a nap every day or she is a complete terror from, say, midday until bed time around 6pm. I know it's lack of sleep because when she has a nap she's just a joy, and so much happier in herself.
But she fights sleep? Like no tomorrow. It's intense. If I lay down with her, she'll much about playing and wake up her baby sister in the process. If hubby tries to lay down with her - no dice, up and screaming for mummy. (Background: we've co slept since birth and still do of a night. Yeah, yeah rod for my own back and all that).
She sleeps really well in the car but I can't go out driving every day just to put her to sleep! I'm considering today just leaving her with DP and going for a walk so I can't hear her crying for me... goes against my instinct but the non sleeping is starting to impact negatively on the rest of us though so something has got to give.
Anyone have experience/advice/thoughts? (Gentle parenting ideas, please!)
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09-09-2013 07:49 #1
Toddler (2.5) fighting sleep?
09-09-2013 08:02 #2
She may be just starting to grow out of the nap, but still really needs it. I feel for you, my DS fought his still needed nap from 2.5 until almost 3.5 I'm afraid to say! He dropped the nap completely at 3, but then needed a very quiet at home afternoon and an early bedtime for another 6 months. He is *just* growing out of it now, but it's been a real pain I have to say.
When he started resisting the nap, I would take him for a drive/walk in the pram when I could and he would have a sleep there. I tried to do that at least 3 days a week or so or he would get completely overtired. Then the days he was at childcare I asked the staff to make sure he lay quietly on his mat for at least an hour, even if he didn't sleep. The other days at home I would get him to go into his bed, but reiterated that he didn't need to sleep, just rest. I would turn the light off and turn on a talking book and he had to stay in his bed until the story finished. He was quite happy to do that as he wasn't being made to go to sleep. But quite often he would fall asleep while listening to the story.
Last edited by FearlessLeader; 09-09-2013 at 08:05.
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09-09-2013 08:07 #3
Our DS was the same. Unfortunately we have just had to drop the nap (he was horrendous of a night!). Over a short period his seems to be adjusting and he is less cranky in the afternoon now. He goes to bed 100 times easier now. If he has been really active in the morning, occasionally he will still have one or sometimes he will fall asleep in the car, but for the most part no nap (I miss it LOL).
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09-09-2013 08:07 #4
*sigh* so I'm not alone here. Another YEAR of it makes me want to hide under the blanket! I've been thinking about just enforcing quiet time, lying down in a dark room that kind of thing. A talking book is a great idea. I'm guessing this will be a bit of a work in progress...
09-09-2013 08:09 #5
Today I'm going to try a really packed, busy morning with walks and playgroup and a dark room + story when we get home. Fingers crossed.
09-09-2013 08:13 #6
Get a nice loooong talking book, lol. Beatrix Potter, Winnie the Pooh and Thomas the Tank Engine are especially soporific I got a big stack from the library and put them all on an mp3 player in DS's room.
09-09-2013 08:19 #7
Quiet time sounds like a great idea. Where do you find the talking books? I like the sound of those for quiet time
It's a really hard age regarding sleeping I find. They are sort of in that in between stage. MY DS' naps were over 2 hours some days and he would still sleep all night. He would just stuff around for AGES before hand!
All the best, I hope you find a solution that helps.
09-09-2013 09:51 #8
Kids can go through a phase around 2 of fighting day naps, but persist is my opinion as long as it's not affecting night time sleep. My dd sometimes talks to her teddies and rolls around in her cot for an hour and then eventually goes to sleep. Usually on the days when we only have 1.5 hours for her to rest! grrr!! (she's 2 in a couple of weeks). Most days she sleeps 2.5 - 3 hours though.
My dd is doing exactly what you describe at night bedtime currently and it is stressing me out completely. Going out so you don't hear her scream is not a bad idea. Seriously. I went away for 9 days (she was bad beforehand and of course worse when I got back) and when I was away if she cried for me my dh would say "Mummy isn't here, she went on a plane remember?" and dd would say "ok" and relax. She slept quite well while I was away. Not when I got back. I was cosleeping maybe a few nights a week from maybe 3am onwards if she wouldn't settle. When I got back from my work trip she refused to sleep at night without me, so I was lying down from 8pm til 7am ... oi, it was hard (and I was sick so I was seriously uncomfortable too). What has worked is dh distracting her - me trying to put her to bed doesn't work, but dh distracting her with stories & songs works well but does take AGES. We're seeing slow improvement each day.
So, I'd suggest talking books (borrow from the library), classical music or something along those lines. Maybe that will help provide the necessary distraction.
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