Am desperate - any ideas on how to get a 6 and a 4 year old to not wake up so early??

(52 Posts)
ceebeegeebies Sun 31-Mar-13 20:15:01

Both DC are excellent sleepers (which I am very grateful for) but insist on waking up generally anytime between 5 and 6am sad

After 6 and a half years of no lie-ins, I think I have reached the end of my tether. Me and DH are permanently tired, snappy at each other etc.

They share a bedroom and they know they are not allowed in our bedroom until 7am (at weekends) but they always wake us up by going to the toilet, talking, playing (--or killing each other--). Particularly if they wake up at, say 5.30, they cannot play nicely with each other for 90 minutes in their bedroom hmm

One of us could have a lie-in whilst the other one takes them downstairs and we do do this occasionally but both me and DH are generally 'once awake, have to get out of bed' people.

They don't have particularly early bedtimes, and over the Easter weekend these have slipped anyway...yet they are still awake at the crack of dawn!

Please help - any advice would be greatly appreciated smile

ceebeegeebies Sun 31-Mar-13 20:57:06

Bump anyone??

LackaDAISYcal Italy Sun 31-Mar-13 21:00:24

<lurks for advice>

5am here for the last four and a half years <sigh> DS2 is a "once awake, everyone else has to be awake" person.

Generally my luffly DH gets up with him as I work lates but he is at the end of his tether. Bought a gro clock six months ago. hahahaha <bitter laugh>

Chocotrekkie Sun 31-Mar-13 21:00:48

Might not work with 2 of them but my dd2 aged 7 has always been up at 5.30 ish since she was tiny. She has tv in her room and is allowed to watch it quietly until we get up. It's usually the only tv she watches all day so I don't feel too bad about it (honestly). We tried everything to get her to sleep longer but nothing worked...

LackaDAISYcal Italy Sun 31-Mar-13 21:02:32

oh, and our two boys (DD is a dream, gets up sleepily and quietly around 7am) also can't be left alone for more than 10 minutes, share a room and are awake instantly and loudly. I feeeeeeel your pain sad

essexgirl31 England Sun 31-Mar-13 21:04:27

Lurks with interest
DS nearly 6 and DS nearly 4 are always awake and up at 6.

KLou111 Sun 31-Mar-13 21:04:32

Can you do wake to sleep on children that age? There's a thread on here which some found very successful.
Am currently on night 3 with my 19 month old. smile

LackaDAISYcal Italy Sun 31-Mar-13 21:06:49

sdix is a treasured lie in here! Hate clock change time as it always goes even more pear shaped for a while.

As does any break in the normal routine. late nights mean just as early mornings, and shouty grumpy over-tired children all day.

<googles wake to sleep>

ceebeegeebies Sun 31-Mar-13 21:14:07

Thanks for making me not feel so alone (a lot of my friends with similar-aged children seem to have ones that lie in until 9am) smile

The main problem seems to be DS2 waking up for a wee sometime after 5am - he wakes his brother up and then between them, they wake us up.

Daisy yy to the late nights = same early mornings but very grumpy children all day instead!

I am normally quite an optimistic person and it doesn't bother me but this weekend has really got me down as we have had ridiculously early starts which has made for v long days and grumpiness all round which is a pretty sh*t way to enjoy the Easter weekend sad

KLou111 Sun 31-Mar-13 21:15:24
ceebeegeebies Sun 31-Mar-13 21:15:31

Oh, I used 'wake to sleep' v successfully with DS1 when he was much younger and would definitely recommend it for much younger children...not sure whether it would work as I am not always sure which one of them wakes the other one up (unless DS2 does come out for a wee).

pcbmc00 Sun 31-Mar-13 22:32:29

Dont know if this will work for older children but my 2.11 month old wakes up early but doesnt get out of bed until 'sun comes up on her clock' I invested in the gro clock best invention ever for me and I have found that while she waiting for the 'sun to appear on her clock' she does fall back to sleep until 7.30am ( time we have it set for). Highly recommend it for younger children

LizzyDay Sun 31-Mar-13 22:50:56

How many hours sleep do they usually get total, from falling asleep to waking up?

Just thinking if they reliably sleep 10 hours, then bite the bullet and make their bed-time a time that ties in with that, but waking at a time that suits you. Probably will result in grumpiness for a few days till they get used to it, but you need to persist.

says me whose DC now stay awake till about 10 to make the above system work...

blueshoes Sun 31-Mar-13 23:05:54

Put them to bed later.

Andro Sun 31-Mar-13 23:42:13

Nothing ever worked for me, my parents were cursed with my habit of waking up between 5 and 6am (depending on what time I went to bed) from me being a baby until I went away to school. I still wake up early, I still don't sleep more than 5 (occasionally 6) hours.

Tacal Mon 01-Apr-13 00:03:19

I have also found the gro clock to be successful for my ds who is 4. Before I had the gro clock I would let him watch tv in bed until it was time to get up. Putting him to bed later never worked for me.

KLou111 Mon 01-Apr-13 07:24:42

Yes, gro clock. We've bought one, but ds too young at the moment.
We got to 6.15 this morning smile better than 5-5.30!!

Artichook Mon 01-Apr-13 07:31:30

My 6 and 4 year old have a gro clock set for 7.15. If they wake earlier they must read quietly in bed. If they disobey this rule they lose the right to pudding or any treats for next 24 hours. They would also be sent straight back to their room. At this age they can understand and obey consistently enforced rules.

BetsyVanBell Mon 01-Apr-13 07:44:22

We've had a light up bunny clock (ie a night light at night, goes to an obvious daytime setting when they're allowed to get up) since the DCs were 1 and 3 (now 8 &6!) and used along side bribes and sanctions has been very effective. Dc1 hasn't been a problem for a while but dc2 is a naturally early bird and wide awake with it. For the most part Bunny clock is obeyed and he's allowed to read quietly (or when younger look at books) if he wakes but no getting out of bed, except for toilet, until bunny wakes up. However, them going to the toilet does often wake me but as long as they go back to bed quietly then that's fine. Changing wet sheets wakes me up even more!

Later bedtimes has never ever made a difference. Just end up with a grumpy kid.

chickensaladagain Mon 01-Apr-13 07:49:54

Can't they be up by themselves at 6&4?

You don't have to be with them constantly at that age

And I'm not talking about leaving them for hours while you sleep until lunch, but the difference getting up at 7 may make to your grumpiness levels can be massive

blueshoes Mon 01-Apr-13 10:00:40

Some children will only sleep a fixed amount of time. My children only ever need 10 hours of sleep a night, even from a young age. So putting them to bed later definitely works for them. They are bouncing and happy, rarely grumpy except at the end of an intense day.

LizzyDay Mon 01-Apr-13 10:20:53

Agree with blueshoes - from the age of about 5 mine rarely actually fell asleep till after 9pm, sometimes 10 pm, slept well, and woke up around 7.30 am.

Gets easier when you can leave them to read and switch own light off.

ICanTotallyDance Mon 01-Apr-13 11:59:02

Exercise! Is there a karate/swimming/running/ballet/orienteering/dance club that runs in the evenings? Or can you go for a family walk after dinner? The children will sleep like the dead after even twenty minutes exercise (if you're lucky) and it'll be good for them too.

Alternatively, they might get grumpy with each other because they're hungry. Is there anyway they can get breakfast without waking you up? Might be tricky with these ages but worth a shot.

Or you can give in and have a tv installed in their bedroom (or iPads/tablets?).

Encourage a reading hour. Say, from 6-7am they can read.

Also, sticker charts! Every time they stay quietly in their room until, say, 7.00 they get a sticker.

If nothing else works- give in and have an early bedtime yourselves. Or move to a dairy farm where this rising time will be much appreciated.

It's difficult, but in nine years they'll both be teenagers and you won't have to worry. grin

ceebeegeebies Mon 01-Apr-13 13:08:29

I don't have a problem in getting them both to sleep...they generally fall asleep as soon as their heads hit the pillows!

Also I know I don't have to be with them 24 hours a day but they do have a tendency to argue and fight if left alone for too long - and 90 minutes is generally too longwink

DS1 can read a clock and they have one in their bedroom and they do obey it but see my point above. ..if they wake up at 5.30 they can be in their room for 90 minutes!!

Reward charts may be the way forward but still isn't going to help the fact that once I have been woken up I struggle to get back to sleep sad

Of course sod's law that this morning I was awake and downstairs before 6 and nobody else got up till 7!!

Oh come on, really - you get a full night's sleep pretty much every nightand you are exhausted just because your kids get up early? Just alternate who gets up with them at weekends confused then you both get one lie in a week. You can go to bed earlier if you are "exhausted".

They will grow out of it in a few years time. I'd bet 25% of kids get up between 5am and 6am, that's just part of the deal. Mine do that and one of them is up every 2 hours all night. We have to be up at 6.15am anyway on school days. If they all slept through the night til 5am I would be incredibly happy and full of the joys of spring biscuit

Some people over use the word exhausted....

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