Oliver + S

Go To Bed!

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    Profile photo of JaneJane @jesims

    This is super-duper off topic but since there are so many mother’s here and I am desperate I thought I’d give it a try…

    P turned 5 on Monday and I can’t tell you the last time she slept through the night (we’re talking years). She wakes up anywhere from 1-3+ times at night. When she does, she comes to my room and wakes me up. Generally she runs back to her bed and climbs right in. Occasionally she will have an excuse, like she needs to use the bathroom. I know it is a habit she has formed but I don’t know how to break it and I am at my wits end.

    I have tried positive rewards (stickers, treats, etc), didn’t work. I have tried keeping her up during the day without a nap (and dealing with the consequences of an overtired kid that was awake half the night and really tired), didn’t work. I have tried lavender and chamomile pillow spray, it didn’t work. We keep the same bedtime routine every night, bath, stories, tuck in. Short of asking the pediatrician for some kiddo ambien, I don’t know what else to do. I am exhausted and desperate, HELP!

    Jane

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    Profile photo of Lightning McStitchLightning McStitch @LightningMcStitch

    Can’t help, but I’ve just come home from a party, it’s well past midnight and I saw the topic header “go to bed” and I thought, righto I will!
    I may have had a few drinks….
    Good luck with the kid situation. I’m told they grow up and move out eventually.

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    Profile photo of RobinRobin @Robin

    No advice. But plenty of empathy. I know we all do all kinds of things to get our kids to sleep.

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    Profile photo of JaneJane @jesims

    HaHa @lightningmcstitch you gave me an idea, maybe I’ll have a few drinks before bed so I can sleep through it and let hubby deal with it! πŸ˜‰

    • This reply was modified 1 year ago by Profile photo of Jane Jane.
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    Profile photo of SarviSarvi @Sarvi

    I also have a wakeful kid, I didn’t get five continuous hours of sleep until well past her second birthday. You are not alone!

    Could it be that she is just not yet ready to sleep independently? Could you put her bed in your room or let her sleep with you? It sounds like you are a source of comfort and security for her.

    We like having ours co-sleep and she’s shown zero interest in moving out into a room and bed of her own (I offer every so often to see where she is with it) but every family has their own preferences. Mine does a fair bit of MMA in her sleep and I often find myself in a leglock around 3am or so but I roll over and go back to sleep and just chalk it up as part and parcel of an age of childhood that I will probably be very sad to see go. Would that be something that might work for you?

    Good luck, and ultimately Time will solve it, hang in there.

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    Profile photo of vothgirlvothgirl @vothgirl

    If it’s a behavioral (i.e. not medical) issue, there are nightlights that visually show the child when they’re supposed to stay in bed vs when it’s time to get up – a moon lights up for stay-in-bed time, and you can program the built-in timer to switch to lighting up a sun when it’s ok for them to get up. This is one I was recommended (not currently available thru Amazon, but you might be able to find it elsewhere and I am sure there are other similar products from other brands): http://www.amazon.com/dp/B002N4IN0U/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_ttl?_encoding=UTF8&colid=76EB6W6HVDX1&coliid=IZJOYKILTZEZM

    We’re T-2 days from switching my 2-year old to a toddler bed (I wanted to wait til all my Christmas sewing was done and my husband was off work for a few days to help enforce stay-in-bed time!)…I’ll be honest and say that I’m praying for the best but dreading the worst. Ellie is a very active child and will happily hang out in her crib at naptime but doesn’t really nap a whole lot – she plays/talks/etc for a couple hours every afternoon to give me a break ;-). Once she’s no longer confined, I’m not sure I’ll be able to have any “time off” during the day :-P. Hopefully after a week of being told to go back to bed she will get the idea. She shares a room with her 7-month old sister who is currently teething, so it will be interesting to say the least!

    Sending you big hugs…sleep is so essential to sane parenting! I know all of us mums are wishing you the best and hoping you’re able to find a solution.

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    Profile photo of TamaraTamara @justsewit

    Yes there is a great product that could help if it is behavioural. Its called the Gro clock. Its a clock that you can set the time to and it acts as a sleep trainer. It has a sun and moon picture and stars that disappear. The idea is the child has to wait to see the sun pop up on the clock to indicate the time they can get out of bed and this is set by the parents.

    Just google Gro clock to check out more. Its produced by the same company that make the Gro bag sleeping bags (amongst lots of other gadgets).

    I had issues with my son and not sleeping through until he was three. The clock I mentioned above wasn’t available at the time but had it been we would have used it! We read bedtime stories related to sleep etc. he eventually grew out of it.

    I would also keep the conversation going with this little chicken. Maybe there is something she is afraid of? Nightmares? Or it could be just a habit as you say seeing as it has been going on for quite a while.

    Anyway, the clock is what I would do seeing as she is old enough to be able to learn to read.

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    Profile photo of NicoleNicole @motherof5

    Different children settle at different ages. Liddy took a long time to sleep through the night. She would wake up and miss me.
    In the end I put a cot mattress under my bed and a quilt and told her she was welcome to make a nest on the floor but to please not wake me.
    I think by 5 a child is old enough to have explained you need sleep to be a happy and healthy mummy.
    Perhaps you could play hardball and miss a few trips to the the playground because you are ‘too tired’ to drive safely.

    If she misses a few treats because you are ‘resting’ she may make the connection.
    Matilda is 5 and had days when she didn’t want to go to school. I let her stay home but there was no telly, no paints, no cooking or making. I made the day as dull as possible. She soon realised it was more fun to go to school.
    5 year olds can be pretty smart (and empathetic) does she know how tired you are getting?

    I am sure you have tried a torch, packed a wee lunch box and drink, that sort of thing.

    Good luck and lots of tired mummy love to you Jane.
    xx N

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    Profile photo of NicoleNicole @motherof5

    ps She didn’t really sleep well until Matilda moved in with her, they share a bed.
    I think she was about 6 then. We co-sleep, like Sarvi.

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    Profile photo of SarviSarvi @Sarvi

    The lunch box with a drink is genius! I wish I had thought of that!

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    Profile photo of violetvatavioletvata @violetvata

    I agree with all of the above. Mine were all very wakeful, taking till age 3 or so to sleep thru. And we tried everything! My youngest still wakes once a night (he’s seven) and I will take him to the bathroom and he will climb in with us. He is terrified of ghosts and I believe he can see something from what he says. He won’t even put his feet on the floor at night without me. Similarly, he won’t go into other rooms of the house without me now that it gets dark so early in the evening. The reason I allow it and am comfortable with it, is because you see so clearly that he is scared, and he won’t go in to that room, etc even if he REALLY wants to hurry to do something fun (wash up so he can see his show, etc), he will still wait patiently for me to come so he can wash up, etc. My trick is to always watch if the “little problem” goes away when there is something in it for them πŸ™‚ If the “problem” is still there even when they really want to head out for fun, see a friend, etc, I treat it as valid and try to accommodate it. What Nicole said about making sure she realizes how much it affects you and making sure she sees that her actions impact on her own fun is a great way to start checking that! I am trained as a naturopathic physician and chewable melatonin is a safe thing for kids to take before bed occasionally. It helps them fall asleep and stay asleep a bit longer. Please consult with your pediatrician before using it with your child and for dosing, and please treat it as you would any drug and store it safely. Much safer than ambien and all that though!

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    Profile photo of JaneJane @jesims

    I knew I would get some good advice here and I have. Thank you all from the bottom of my tired heart. πŸ™‚

    I had never heard of a GroClock before, what a wonderful idea. I talk her every night about staying in bed until the sun is up, but maybe something a little more concrete that she can see right in front of her would help. She is interested in clocks and telling time, so this might be right up her alley.

    @Nicole I was hoping you would chime in, I just felt like you’d have some wonderful advice. I hadn’t thought of showing her how it affects me and things that we do/don’t do because I’m “tired”, great idea. Her first question nearly every morning is “what are we going to do today.” If I can answer that by saying we won’t be doing much because Mommy is tired, that might really have an impact. I have considered putting a sleeping arrangement for her in her brothers room, he gets up at 5:45 for school though so I’m not sure how much that might help. Perhaps if he were to get all of his things for morning out of his room at night we might be able to work something out.

    @violetvata I have a good friend that has suggested melatonin to me as well. We have P’s 5 year well check-up on Monday and I do plan to talk to the pediatrician about it.

    Again, thank you all. Worse case scenario, like @sarvi said, they eventually move out, so in 13 or so years I’ll get a restful nights sleep I guess. πŸ˜‰

    Jane

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    Profile photo of Lightning McStitchLightning McStitch @LightningMcStitch

    @Jane I don’t know what it’s like where you live, but round here they say the average leaving home age is now 27!! :0
    Makes sense to have some kind of plan to work towards improving things before then!
    My daughter was a really early riser for the first two years. There was no chance of her going back to sleep, so we took turns putting her in the pram and going for a predawn run. You do what you have to do to stay sane and make sure everyone gets a turn at sleeping in.
    Now, only 2 years later I have to wake her most mornings.
    And I believe teenagers may not get out of bed for whole weekends…
    Changeable critters these kids.

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    Profile photo of NicoleNicole @motherof5

    You are so sweet Jane. I hope you get some more sleep soon.

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    Profile photo of mcholley1mcholley1 @mcholley1

    We are crazy co-sleepers here too, though we kicked them out at about 3 yrs old. I agree…you can’t stop her from waking, but you can stop her from waking you. My oldest (now 7) still wakes up from time to time. I keep a little box in the living room with a blanket and pillow. I find her in all sorts of places in the mornings…the couch, the floor in my room, the floor in her room, but she doesn’t wake me. She’s allowed to read with a small light if she is up, but I threaten consequences if she plays toys, iPad, or wakes anyone else in the house. Works for us… Good luck and happy slumber.

    And, Lightening! I can’t stop giggling! Alcohol consumption is way up at my house this time of year! Some of my decision making has been questionable at best. πŸ™‚

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