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To demand a night off after ten years?(26 Posts)
My children are 10, 7 and 3.5. I haven't had a night away from them in all that time, except when the two eldest went to stay with g'ma and g'dad - but I still had the baby to look after.
The youngest is recently completely weaned (she's been having bedtime feed only, but dropped that this month) and since then is taking absolutely ages to fall asleep. She doesn't cry, just fidgets about in her bed, with me next to her, until 1 or 2 in the morning. This has been going on for a couple of weeks now and I'm really suffering. My (estranged-but-still-living in the same house) husband is offering no support. I feel that the only way to make him take some nighttime responsibility (which he has never done, even when they were newborns) is to just not be there and make him get on with it.
Obviously, there are other issues, but quite simply I feel that I just want to get an early night before I go completely do-lally. I know he will accuse me of child abandonment, because that's what he's like, but I also feel that that is an unreasonable accusation and I need to start standing up for myself.
Any thoughts most welcome.
Thanks for all the posts, lovely to finish work and find them all waiting!
To clarify, dd sleeps in her own bed, but the only way I've found to get her to sleep is to lie down next to her for as long as it takes. This isn't a problem in itself, just that it used to take five minutes and now it takes 1.5 hrs or more!!
We have a slightly unorthodox routine generally as my kids are home-ed and because I often work in the evening. Their usual bedtime is around 10.30pm, which is when the older two take themselves off with a book and when youngest would fall asleep. I can cope with this as we don't have any particularly early starts, everyone was getting enough sleep, but now not getting to my own bed till 1 or 2am is driving me crazy!! I realise that it's a stage, that I've been very lucky not to suffer from sleep deprivation long term (thanks to combining bf with co-sleeping), but I am just feeling very frustrated that estranged dh has rarely taken on any nighttime stuff and hasn't supported me at all while I've been weaning the youngest in the last few months. As an example, last night he left middle dd2 to get dd3 to sleep and went to bed, so in the end I had to deal with it.
I must say in his defence, that he can be a good dad, but I've noticed that he cherry picks all the fun parenting stuff and leaves the more mundane tasks to me. There are so many other issues, obviously, which is why I need to get out of the marriage, but me feeling so tired this week has just meant that all my frustrations on this one particular issue have come to the surface.
In the medium term we will be separating, but there are a few things I need to sort out first and I'm seeing a solicitor next week.
So thanks for all the support, I emailed him explaining how I felt and saying I would be staying elsewhere tonight in order to get a good night's sleep, to which I got a one line acknowledgment. Let's see how he copes...
And reallyit's up to you how you handle your LO's sleep. Is she unsettled because of the separation do you think?
That will improve with time.
Get a copy of "the no cry sleep solution for Toddlers and preschoolers"
Sorry about H.
If he's capable of looking after them could you just tell him you're going away for a night? Maybe rope in a friend so you feel you have a "reason".
If he makes it difficult then maybe you could take them to your DM or someone you trust ( make a note of that date he refused to have them for future reference).
Re type ... Take your kids and go stay with your mum for the weekend! Then book yourself in somewhere .
Take your kids and go stay without mum for the weekend. Then you book yourself in somewhere.
You don't need his permission to go anywhere.
p.s. my son slept with me when he was 3.5 and it was fine and suited us both, just do what you feel is a routine that suits you.
If your youngest is having sudden problems in sleeping, what could that be, as too old for teething I would have thought?
Hi OP, you sound a wonderful mother.
10 years of hard work and sacrifice as well as great times, but yes I think its probably your time to have a bit of "you" time. ( am in a similar position but with one child and single parent but still similar responsibility).
Yes, you probably need at least an early night, and probably some more fun time too, I say go for it. Anyone else apart from ex, who can help? Either way, make him look after the children for a week, my suggestion. Now weather is nice, go and stay somewhere for a few days and do what you want. As he gets used to it and your youngest gets older, extend that to a week, really you deserve it.
3.5 and still sleeps with you.
No way could I deal with that.
There may well be (and probably are if useless Ex is in the house) very reasonable reasons for this but I'd get that sorted out as a matter of urgency.
And... yeah! Just tell him he's having them.
Get him out ASAP, like others say, and you get every other weekend off!!
Tell him you're concerned that he's not involved in looking after the kids enough & that it could affect his relationship with them as they grow up. Purely in his interests, you're going to leave them alone for the weekend. Then you book yourself a well deserved overnight spa break.
YNBU. No wonder he's your "estranged" husband, the useless git.
Of course you are not abandoning your child - what a twat your DH must be. But there are several other issues in your post - your DH is your exDH, but you live together? He takes no responsibility for childcare? And your 3.5 yo is going to sleep at 1 or 2am?
I think the first thing would be to deal with the sleep issue before you go nuts and then perhaps you will be able to see clearly on the other things. What time does your youngest get up in the morning? Have you tried any sleep training methods? Have you seen a GP about their poor sleeping habits or was she fine when you were still bfing? Is she napping in the day? I don't see how a 3.5 yo can function on that little sleep.
In the interim, of course you should just go out/stay at a friends to catch up on some sleep. You don't need his permission surely.
YASNBU! Sod what he will accuse you of, he's quite obviously talking shit. Just book a hotel or go and stay somewhere you will get some peace and present it to him as a done deal, no negotiating.
And I am unsure of how asking the children's father to look after his own kids for a night or two could change the status quo before divorce? He's not likely to go from crap dad to wanting full time custody is he?
I understand how difficult it can be to put a 3 year old to bed, but you've got to sort this out ASAP.
I hope you're rid of your husband soon. If he's a competent father, i.e. you can trust him with a custodial visit - think of the satisfaction of sending the kids to him for the weekend - it will be a revelation for him.
I'm with pinkdelight - put your 3.5 to bed with a story, then leave her to it. If you stay with her until the early hours, no wonder you are knackered.
When/If you properly separate or divorce, he will have them for weekends and you will get your breaks.
Be careful though, you may not want to change the status quo just before you divorce (re custody)
It's hardly child abandonment if they are left in the care of a parent isn't it?
YANBU. Plus he needs to get used to looking after the children, or is he handing full custody to you when he leaves?
Can I just clarify - you go to bed at the same time as your 3.5yo, in the same bed, and stay there till 1 or 2 in the morning? i don't understand. Who is that routine helping? Course you need a night off! Can't you just put her to bed and go out?
Sorry if I've missed something.
Why is he still there?
Get him out and you'll get every other weekend to have a rest.
Actually i think you deserve at least 2 nights. If he doesn't agree to it, tell the kids so they know dad's in charge and just go.
You don't need his permission! Just talk him you're going to your mum's on your own and you'll see him the next day. If you haven't had a night off in 10 years he can hardly accuse you of abandonment! Enjoy your night off.
I'd also have his bags packed and outside the door by tonight! No point in him being there f he isn't either a husband or a Dad!
YANBU to want a night off. Is there anyone else that could help out of prize prat isn't up to it?
Thankyou Bonadea. My parents live a looooong way away and tbh I think he would insist that I took kids with me, the youngest at least. And I am the world's worst fibber
Could your mother 'get sick' or something meaning you have to go away for a night or so? Obviously would be better just to tell the truth but the ex sounds like he'd make a mountain out of a molehill so perhaps better just to make it something he can't argue about?
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