Something needs to change!!!

(17 Posts)
Taler Wed 06-Jan-16 08:13:53

DD (2 years and 2 months) is a RUBBISH sleeper! DH & I are at wits end and desperate for things to change!

Since coming back from holiday at beginning of October DD has been sleeping terribly.

A few weeks after returning from holiday we moved her into a toddler bed (her cot bed) was getting a little small. The first few weeks was fine. A smooth transition. And then she started waking loads and for the past 3/4 weeks she's been sleeping on the floor!?!?!?!

Having researched this it would appear that sleeping in the floor is fairly common. We therefore took the attitude that we'd simply leave her there as long as we felt she was getting decent sleep. But she has a cough and cold at the moment and sleeping on the floor makes her cough a lot more.

We bought a sleep reward chart. Last night was only the 3rd time of using it so appreciate its early days but quite frankly I don't think she really cares enough about getting a sticker to stay in her bed. It appeared to be working as she'd stay in bed after we leave the room whereas prior to the reward chart she' be straight on the floor. But inevitably at some point through the night she moves to the floor.

DH and I are so tired and ratty. Something needs to change but I don't know what??

DD wakes several times through the night. Sometimes she'll cry out in her sleep and of course on those occasions we don't get up, but Otjer times she'll say "dummy" "teddy" "water", all of these things should be at easy reach. And other times she's coughing so we want to get up and ensure she has a drink or give her some honey.

I think she's gotten used to waking now but I don't get why. If you're asleep you're asleep?!?!

Since the beginning of October she had gone through the night 3 times!!! At her age she should be sleeping through.

Help!

UnplainJane Wed 06-Jan-16 10:33:44

My 21mo DS has not slept through regularly. Still in a cot so bed time a breeze, he falls asleep by himself quickly but wakes multiple times a night still. I'm also getting pretty sick of it and think by his age he should have mastered the sleep thing. When he wakes in the night I literally go in tuck him up then walk out and he goes back to sleep easily but not for long. I guess it's a habit/reassurance thing as he can obviously self settle. I guess I'm just waiting for him go improve with time!

FATEdestiny Wed 06-Jan-16 12:45:51

Some babies gain a lot of security from the sides of their cot - it helps then feel enclosed and safe.

My children have all been between around aged 3 when we moved to a bed. Maybe your DD is one who prefers a cot with sides? Could you revert back to the cot and try?

If not, how about a mattress and her pillow/blankets etc all on the floor for now?

UnplainJane Wed 06-Jan-16 13:04:18

Interesting FATE, my DS has never slept particularly well. He is quite an active sleeper and I hear him banging into the cot sides all the time so we were thinking about putting him into a single in the hope he would be more comfortable. He has never particularly liked his cot, he is always asking to sleep in 'big bed' (his brothers bed) or 'Daddy's bed' (in the marital bed next to me!) He hasn't slept anywhere other than his cot despite his asking but we were considering it might be time for the change.

Taler Wed 06-Jan-16 13:18:07

It has been suggested that we possibly moved her too soon. If she did like the security of a cot then it makes no logical sense why she'd put herself on the floor!?!?

DH is saying that if the sleep reward chart doesn't work then we'll get her travel cot out (we sold her cotbed). I don't disagree that it may be worth going back to a cot but a) travel cots are not remotely comfortable - fine for the odd night but not every night; and b) is it not a huge step back and won't we have this all 5 months down the line???

UnplainJane Wed 06-Jan-16 13:26:17

Why not try a floor bed as suggested by FATE? Does she have a bed guard up?

FATEdestiny Wed 06-Jan-16 13:37:12

If she did like the security of a cot then it makes no logical sense why she'd put herself on the floor!?!?

It feels 'safe' in the floor. Or at least 'safer' than the bed, in your daughters mind.

Evidentially your daughter is finding the bed a big, scary space and this follows logically on from losing the security of the cot.

Selling the cot so soon wasn't a brilliant idea but it's done now. The travelcot may well not solve this, because it will be different to the comfort and security of the cot space she knew previously. This might be just as scary to her as the bed is.

I would make a floor bed for now, while working on helping her feel less scared by the bed.

2 years old is a bit on the young side for a reward chart. I could suggest outright instant bribery instead (you can have a biscuit as soon as you wake up if you stay in your bed all night). However I think that this is still coming at the issue in the wrong way. It is not that she needs rewards for complying, it is that she needs help to feel less frightened and more secure at night.

Taler Wed 06-Jan-16 14:43:37

How can you be so sure that she feels scared of her new bed? I'm not saying she doesn't but it sounds like you are really sure.

Someone else suggested that it's simply her asserting her independence. Or that she is trying to recreate her sleep environment at nursery (they sleep on mattresses on the floor there).

She doesn't have a bed guard but have simply put a rolled up towel underneath the bottom sheet to stop her falling out which works great.

If she is scared of the bed then how come she settles in it okay at bedtime? We do a few stories and then she goes to sleep.

FATEdestiny Wed 06-Jan-16 15:11:50

I'm not certain. It's just that it is not uncommon for some babies to value the sides of their cot and struggle with the change to bed for this reason.

Because this is a common occurance and teamed with what you are saying about not wanting to sleep in the bed (repeatedly choosing the bare floor in preference) - its all just a logical conclusion based on what you said.

No certainly from me. Only your daughter will be the cetain one.

Asserting independance in this way less likely, especially if previously a poor sleeper. Makings oneself deliberately uncomfortable when sleeping is a rather extreme version of cutting your nose off to spite your face

Recreating nursery environment is a possibility. Especially if this is a cozy, secure-feeling environment. To sleep, children need to feel comfy, safe, secure and calm. Most children feel that primarily in their own room and often also in Mums bed.

Taler Wed 06-Jan-16 15:50:44

Thank you. It does make sense but just confused why she slept okay in her bed for the first few weeks??

FATEdestiny Wed 06-Jan-16 17:05:57

I also recall with my own children that it took them a while to realise that they could now get out of bed when they wanted to. Having always been in a cot and not being able to get out, they just hadn't realised this was a possibility initially.

I remember explaining to my son that when he woke up in the morning, he could come into my bedroom rather than just shouting me from his bed (like he had done from his cot). This had not occurred to him as an option.

UnplainJane Wed 06-Jan-16 17:50:45

I asked about the bed guard as thought if she had one it might stop her from being able to get out of bed as easily - she will have to make an effort to shuffle down the bed to get around it. Also it might help to make her feel enclosed so a bit more secure?

Diddlydokey Wed 06-Jan-16 17:53:55

I would put a bed guard up.

What does she do of you ignore her requests for water etc?

I think you need to ignore as much as possible

Taler Wed 06-Jan-16 22:20:08

Ok so tonight made the decision to move her mattress (along with duvet and teddies) to the floor, right by the stair gate where she usually sleeps.

I simply told her that mummy and daddy want her to be comfortable so if she wants to sleep on the floor then that's fine but she can do it on her nice comfy warm bed with all her teddies.

My main issue with the floor was that while she has a cough it's making it much worse (as the floor is cold) so being on her mattress will at least help with that. Am just concerned where we go from here. I know it's one step at a time but how do we eventually get her back in her bed?

Taler Wed 06-Jan-16 22:21:57

Diddlydokey - to be honest, I haven't really left her when she calls out for her dummy or her teddy but am realising that I probably need to

FATEdestiny Wed 06-Jan-16 22:41:29

Toughie. I'm not sure because I've not been in this position before. Give it a while to settle first, I certainly wouldn't do anything while she's poorly.

Certainly keep on talking about it - Big girls sleep on their big girl bed. When you are ready to be a big girl, we can move your little girl (floor) bed onto the big girl bed. Teddy wants to sleep on the big girl bed with you. Mummy and Daddy will be sooooo pleased when you can sleep all night on your big girl bed.

In with chatting see if she can verbalise anything about what she doesn't like (she may not be able to at this age). Do lots of happy playing together on and around the bed. Sit on the bed often (maybe story time?) to get used to it.

No pressure to actually make the change, but don't brush it away and forget about it. We did this with my DSs dummy - kept going on and on about how Big Boys do this, don't do that. So that it was always being chipped away at in their mind.

Can your daughter count? Does she understand number placement (3 is less than 7)? Can she do simple addition or subtraction? Does she know the days of the week and that there are 7 days in a week? My children wouldn't at 2 years and 2 months, but I don't know about your DD?

If not, then there is no point in having a sticker chart. She doesn't understand numbers that way. She would not understand what "do this for a week and you can have a prize" means because she may not have the understanding of what a week is. She may not understand 'more than' or 'less than' therefore would not understand anything like "three more stickers to go until you get the prize".

The bottom line is that unless you have a very advanced 2 year old, a sticker chart is not useful. You need something much more visual. Or alternatively something instant - do this tonight and you can have this prize (a sticker isn't a prize).

Taler Thu 07-Jan-16 08:16:09

Thanks again.

She woke a couple of times last night but am sure it would've been more if she was on the floor!

She can count to 10 but that's all. No understanding of more than/less than/days of the week etc so agree the sticker chart is maybe something for a later date.

We have had a few 'tea parties' on her bed with her teddies in the attempt to make her bed appealing and fun but will also try talking to her more as you suggest. She isn't really able to verbalise what it is about her bed she doesn't like. Would give anything to know!

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