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How do you keep calm?

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gayleygoo
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How do you keep calm?

Postby gayleygoo » Mon Nov 07, 2011 11:53 am

Daragh's sleep issues are driving me up the wall. I know, I know every other post I make on here is to do with sleeping or the lack of it :roll: I should be thankful that it's my biggest issue really, but I feel I'm being a terrible mum by how I'm starting to react to it :(

When we moved him into Molly's room a couple of months ago, both their sleeping improved and aside from the crazy giggling and shouting they'd do once I'd left the room, they went to sleep themselves and slept all night, most nights. I started to hold Daragh while singing a song at bedtime, in the hopes of calming them down before sleep. This seemed to work too well and after just a few nights of that, he refused to go to sleep without me.

For the last month I have rocked him to sleep most nights, this takes hours. I'm now pretty much in tears before DH even leaves the room at about 7.15, after they're tucked in. I can't help it, it's so frustrating trying to get him to sleep and I've been at it most evenings until at least 9pm, some night's after 10pm. If he wakes in the evening or in the night, he notices I'm gone and it's a few more hours to get him down again, every time. Naps are likewise, at least an hour of rocking to sleep, and he is always tired when I bring him up to bed, he does still need a nap. We have a calm-down and jammies-teeth-story-song betime routine, but that doesn't do the trick.

Last night I did something I'm ashamed of, I smacked him :( not very hard, but he's still only a small toddler and I shouldn't have. I was just so angry that I've so little time to myself, I'm wrecked by 7pm never mind 10pm and it was then that I just lost it. I don't like the idea of cry-it out either but believe me I'd have been trying that ages ago if he wasn't in Molly's room and therefore keeping her awake too.

I've tried loads of techniques to try and get him to go to sleep himself, in his own cot, but he just won't do it. Now he seems to know that I will eventually try to put him down and he does his best to stay awake even when he's so tired. DH can't help as Daragh refuses even to be held by him, he will scratch and hit and scream at DH if I send him up. The whole thing is making me resent my own child, every night I dread taking him to bed, and as it gets later I don't want to be near him. I think it would be much better if DH could at least take over from time to time, and he tries his best, but it hasn't worked.

I know this is probably normal for many, many parents out there, but I'm at my wits end, hours of my day are devoted to trying to get him to sleep and I can't help but cry through them. I just needed to write it down here. Now I have to go get him as he's woken up from his very short nap :x

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justme123
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Re: How do you keep calm?

Postby justme123 » Mon Nov 07, 2011 12:55 pm

:hug: :hug: I could have written your post when ds2 was that age. It is so hard. In the end I decided I just wasn't going to do it any more. I told them I was going to stay for 5 minutes after their story and then I just left. And actually it wasn't that bad. I have gone through various other things since, and do actually now still stay in their room for some time most nights, but only when / if I want to. I remember so well being in a place where I resented him for it and it was horrid. :hug:

The thing which has probably worked best for us over the years is to leave the room for a short time with some excuse (go and get something, go to toilet, get changed etc) and promise to go back. I found I could take quite a long time to go back (getting gradually longer) and they were then normally happy with a quick kiss and cuddle before saying goodnight and going downstairs. This works particularly well if you go to get something of theirs for them - a favourite toy, clothes for tomorrow, a drink of water etc.

I hope I didn't make it all sound easy, I know it's not. Best of luck and hugs and feel free to vent away! :hug:

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red_dwarf
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Re: How do you keep calm?

Postby red_dwarf » Mon Nov 07, 2011 1:05 pm

Oliver was a nightmare to get to sleep until about a month ago. He used to scream and kick and push against you and basically refuse to sleep. I had to hold his arms down otherwise he would scratch me and then I used to rock him. I got some fab tips from here of having music playing in the background while you are trying to get them to sleep, and it now works like a charm. I started off by singing to him which stopped the screaming tho he still scratched and kicked but that was a start, and then over a few weeks, he got calmer and calmer and now sometimes i can feed him, lay him on his side and he will go to sleep himself.
We have a good routine. Bathtime, story then bed and even if he doesnt have a bath, he always gets a story in a darkened room and a cuddle with either me or DH. Then he gets a feed and either held to sleep or placed on his side depending on how restless he is. He is gettin to the poitn now where he is pushing against us nto to keep awake, but to say 'oi I dont want cuddles just leave me' :giggle:

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gilbertandmartha
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Re: How do you keep calm?

Postby gilbertandmartha » Mon Nov 07, 2011 1:07 pm

I went through a terrible patch with the toots when they were about 1 and a half. And i know exactly how you feel. there is a reason why people use sleep deprivation as torture,

I know you say you would have done cry it out but havent because of Molly, but she is probably being disturbed anyway, and to be honest I'd sacrifice a couple of nights of good sleep for her to get him back on track. She will probably just tune out anyway (mine do!) Its the only thing that has worked for me, and usually only takes 1 or 2 days to sort out.

Once you get the nights back on track the days will follow. :hug: :hug:

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Miss_Purple
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Re: How do you keep calm?

Postby Miss_Purple » Mon Nov 07, 2011 1:18 pm

I'm on my phone and not sure how old your LO is, but we had a few similar issues recently (DD is just 2). Tbh, while I also don't like cio in my opinion there is a difference between leaving a distressed, upset, frightened child to cry, and allowing a tired child to fall asleep naturally in their own time even when they don't think they want to. DD always wants me to cuddle her/hold her hand at night now. Sometimes she will go off in a few minutes, otherwise me being there actually keeps her awake and she wants to play :roll:
Imo you can't make a child sleep, but you can 'make' them stay quietly in their bed/cot. I agree with the tip about leaving the room for a minute (eg. Mummy will go and get you a drink then I'll be back). I do that then pop back in 5 mins, then 10, then 15, she's normally gone by then, if not I will sit with her for 5 mins then try again. She has a musical light she can turn on herself, and I also let her have a book to read in her cot if she's really awake (basically my aim is to keep her happy and quiet in her cot, then I figure sleep will follow, rather than trying to make her sleep iyswim).
If you haven't already read it then I really recommend the 'no cry.sleep solution' it was a saviour for us (and I don't really go in for parenting books).

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scarlet
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Re: How do you keep calm?

Postby scarlet » Mon Nov 07, 2011 2:33 pm

Really feel for you! :hug: :hug: We all loose our tempter from time to time, so really don't be hard on yourself. It sounds like you have the patient of a saint.
First of all day sleeps/naps.
We have dropped naps in bed at home as we were having a similar issue of me cuddling/ nursing/ jigging dd to sleep. It taking sometimes up to an hour and most of the time she wouldn't go down at all. It was taking over my day and really stressing me out. We now only do naps in the pram.
In the afternoon when I can tell she is tired we go for a nice long walk in the pram. She normally falls asleep quite quickly now and sleeps really well. She wakes up happy and it feels like a huge weight has been lifted.


Back to update.

Night sleep
We found talking to dd before she went to bed worked wonders. :shock: :shock: This is something me and DP both had tried to avoid , thinking it would caused her to not go to sleep.When in actual fact it seems to help reassure her and relax her a lot more.
What we do is talk about how its bed time and everyone is sleepy, go through various family member's. Tell her how much we love her and talk about how lovely her bed is. We do this in a low soothing voice.

We have also started to leave a drink of water in a non spill cup in bed with her. When we get her in the morning she has usually drank it all and think this helped getting her to sleep through the night. As if she wakes thirties , she can easily get a drink.

Teddies in bed with her, is another thing which has seemed to really help. She has 4 small teddies in bed with her , 2 at either side of her pillow. This also seem's to help settle her and she feel's much happier going to bed with her friends.

I think we have been lucky with dd as she is a good sleeper ( sorry , feel a bit :oops: saying that) and she does really like her bed.

Another thing is she will often ask to get in during the day and have a little play. Maybe this could help you as well?
Spending time there during the day when he isn't going to sleep to get used to it and feel comfortable there.

I'm another who will recommend "the no cry sleep solution book" think they do a toddler version . Really hope you can get it sorted!
Last edited by scarlet on Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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northernruth
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Re: How do you keep calm?

Postby northernruth » Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:09 pm

You need to take charge and be strong with him, both of which are hard to do when you are wrung out. We don't do CIO here either but agree with the leaving for 5 mins and gradually stretching
It out. He cries for you in the night because he is used to going to sleep with you there so feels bereft when he wakes and you are gone. I used to stand by Martha's door and speak to her gently but repetitively "sleepy time now" if she was jabbering or fidgeting and I will still give her a t shirt of mine if she is hyper and can't settle.

You need to sort this for your own health and sanity, so decide you are going to do it, don't cave and remember it will only take a few nights to sort and then you will be free again :hug:

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zippie-purple-monkey
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Re: How do you keep calm?

Postby zippie-purple-monkey » Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:49 pm

Oh hun, I feel for you I really do.
I've been in the exact same situation myself, and yes i also lost my temper and 'tapped' my son - fully ashamed and totally guilty. No-one can punnish me anymore than i have myself.
No-one is judging you hun, as no-one is in your precise situation. When you're at your wits end, exhausted and it seems nothing will work. Logan is still a totally rubbish sleeper if he has a nap at home - but he's ok if he has a little nap in the car when we're out. I find getting him out for an hours fresh air every day works - even if just in the garden, so he can run around and get lots of fresh air. It's really cold atm, so he's wrapped up, but loves running wild - and it means I can stand and watch with a hot brew and i get a few mins peace
i resorted to going to bed really early just so I could atleast get some sleep.

Hope you find a solution that works for you :hug:

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northernruth
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Re: How do you keep calm?

Postby northernruth » Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:18 pm

Is the No Cry Sleep Solution Elzabeth Pantley's book? because I found that very helpful to me. Also Andrea Grace is good

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