So DD for the last 2-3 months has gone from going to bed alone and sleeping all night, to needing me (ONLY me) to read a book, tell her about nice dreams, sing a song and rub her on the back until she's asleep and has been getting up numerous times a night then getting up before 6.
I've quite frankly had enough. She's no longer having nightmares so she's just become accustomed to me being there with her.
So how do I get her back to going to sleep in her own and staying in bed all night?
I'm not wanting to be talked into continuing what I'm doing, I need her to do it by herself and stay in bed all night. Open to gentle or tough love suggestions though.
Just wanting to add that I've been working with a psychologist on my parenting and in general we have discussed how she needs to start letting other people do things for her as her reliance on just me is wearing me out mentally. So I'm trying some tough love in the day time. Eg I have been going out in my own for a few hours here or there and leaving her hysterical I'm going somewhere without her. So I'm unsure if I should be doing tough love at night or something more gentle.
If she was still having nightmares I would lean towards gentle, but now I think it's just her testing me and trying to gain more power.
Thanks in advance. ☺️
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26-03-2016 20:56 #1
4 YEAR old sleep issue
26-03-2016 21:22 #2
No idea here but I'm super interested in hearing some suggestions. Our 4 yr old DS is firmly entrenched in our bed after we had him there while he was sick...a year ago....
I think we may need to go down the tough love road but I'm also mindful that I want bed/his room to be a safe, happy sleep space so don't want to make it a stressful thing.
What if you & DH started putting her to bed together then you started popping in and out, whilst your DH takes on more of the bedtime routine? It might break the need for you to be there?
I really hope you find the way. It's so draining being The Needed One all of the time!
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26-03-2016 21:35 #3Senior Member
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- Mar 2015
Is she quite sensitive/anxious? Can she communicate why? Or how/what she is feeling? I have no suggestions but I hope someone has some ideas to help.
26-03-2016 21:42 #4
If it were me I would sleep on the floor of her room for a few nights and even she stirs immediately shush her and tell her it's ok mummy's here. I had to do that with my nearly 7 year old at that age. It took a few nights but she soon stopped waking. It only worked if I could do it as soon as she started stirring. Any later and she'd be properly screaming and it was too hard to resettle her.
But at that age they can communicate a lot better and I've found I can discuss night wakings with my kids from around 4 and a half. My son who has just turned 5 still wakes once a night from nightmares. I'm very sympathetic to that as I had a lot of nightmares as a kid. But habit waking from that age I'm far less tolerant.
26-03-2016 21:49 #5
My DS totally takes the pi$$ with bedtime so we do pretty tough love. If he was truly distressed I'm not sure what I would do though. We give him a bit of leeway with getting up - probably 2-3 times, he needs to go to the toilet, wants some water blah blah but then after that it's on - I take a toy each time he gets up. We also have a pretty strong evening routine which includes 1 story and he can play for a little while until we tell him to stop.
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26-03-2016 21:49 #6
Same boat here 😔
@Sonja this is what I never understand? I mean, I get not being tolerant of night waking, but...how does that stop them from waking up?
I've been an insomniac my entire life, with hours of awake time during the night. So I am sort of sympathetic to DS that way as long as he lets me sleep/doze, which he does for the most part. But how I can not tolerate it? What difference does that make? Or are you referring ton your children getting out of bed?
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26-03-2016 22:03 #7
@harvs when I say I'm less tolerant I mean I actively work towards stopping it. My eldest woke a lot at night and I actually made a reward chart for her to stop it once I ruled out nightmares or other causes which I felt were beyond her control.
I'm less comforting at night when I believe it's waking from habit. Quick drink, cuddle then back to sleep. No lying with them to settle etc. No "reward" for waking.
I'm a dreadful sleeper and have an awful history of insomnia. I'm trying desperately to break this cycle for my kids so hopefully they are better sleepers than me.
26-03-2016 22:37 #8
I think with my DD if she went to sleep on her own again she would wake less in the night. Well she would come and get me less.
If I'm honest I can cope with night wakings if she went to sleep on her own or wouldn't melt down every time DH tried to put her to sleep.
I do like the idea of slowly swapping to DH doing bed time so it was at the point where he could do it 50% of the time.
The ultimate goal is to get her okay with it not being mummy or nothing. She's lucky to have two parents in her life every day, so it's only fair DH and I share the load.
26-03-2016 22:42 #9
That's a hard one @A-Squared. My son will only let me put him to bed at night. Except when I'm physically not there. Then he's fine with DH. But given the choice it's all me.
Have you left your DH to do it and gone out for an hour?
26-03-2016 22:53 #10Senior Member
- Join Date
- Mar 2015
How long/bad are the night meltdowns?
With my DS they can go on and on in the day but at night it is short and he loses 'puff' quite quickly.
I know you have a younger DS you probably do not want to wake but if it took less than 5 mins of tantrum/meltdown with your DH settling that can maybe help? If it is a habit for just you then maybe the change can help?
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