• Melissa Tuck

Sleep issue strategy...will it work this time though?

Sleeping through the night.....something you desperately crave and strive for when you have your baby. The first time it happens differs for all of us. For us, I think it was around 4 months old. The thing is....IT DOES NOT LAST. People don't really talk about that.

Babies and toddlers have so many things happening to them in their first few years of life - so much change - and the first thing to go whenever you hit a new growth spurt/teething/over stimulated/under stimulated/nap issues - is SLEEPING THROUGH THE NIGHT.

When they are little and in a cot, you are able to generally go pat or rock them back to sleep when they wake, and know that they are secured in their cot and can't escape.

Toddlers however - they can get up out of their bed. They can run along the passage and creep into your room. They can watch you sleep or pat you on the head to wake you up to put them in bed with you.

I was always OK with this initially - I figured as long as he is going to sleep in his bed, the fact that he climbs into ours at 3am is not a big deal and I kinda enjoyed the cuddles.

But then it started to get earlier and earlier...3am became 12....became 11...until now when he is waking up at 10 and coming through which is when we are about to go to sleep.

We have a double bed, but he is big now and so if we all stay in there none of us gets much sleep. So either dad or I go and sleep in his bed and let him sleep in ours. Sounds ridiculous I know but who wants to argue with a STRONG WILLED (AKA STUBBORN AF) 2.5 year old when your tired.

Generally with any sleep disruptions, I say give it 2 weeks. It is normally just around my breaking point (AKA googling frantically for answers at 3am) that he goes back to sleeping well.

This time though, it has been close to 3 weeks and he is coming in at 10pm..and so we need to take action. We have an old faithful trick that normally works for us, but this was when he had trouble GOING to sleep, not waking up and coming to our bed.

The trick is to tell him we will sit outside his door until he falls asleep (and we do so). If he gets out of bed (which he inevitably does the first time) we threaten to open his COT. We even have it there in the passage with us. Adam HATES the thought of being treated like a baby and put in his cot. Not sure if all kids feel this way but this threat terrifies him.

So we are going to try this now, with this fresh set of hell. When he comes to our bed, one of us will walk him back to his room (he WILL have a tantrum) and we will say we will sit there until he falls asleep. If he gets out of bed...COT TIME. The hope is that after a week of that he will realise there is no point in getting out of bed.

I will feedback on who wins this battle in a few days.

Anyone else going through this have other things we can try?



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