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to ask about your bedtime routines

(15 Posts)
Sunflowergirl2011 Sun 29-May-11 15:23:19

I have a just 2 year old and a 9 month old. I wonder if their sleep habits are bad for their age, so would be realy intersted to know what your little ones were doing at this age.

DD1 (aged 2 and 3 months) - will not go to sleep unless me or DH lies next to her. Once she is asleep we leave and she is fine for the night. Is she too old for us still to be doing this?

DD2 (aged 9 months) - will not go to sleep in her cot - we tend to hold her/ lie with her on the sofa to get her to sleep and then put her in the cot once she has had her last bottle and is complety zonked out. Again, once asleep she is fine and will put herself back to sleep if she wakes in the night. I'm sure DD1 went in her cot awake by this age. Is she too old for us still to be doing this with her?

(I have posted a variation of this problem in sleep too, but i know AIBU gets more traffic and am desperate, so please let me know what you think).

barbarasgal Sun 29-May-11 15:39:48

i have two daughters almost the same age as yours, dd1 is 2 yrs 3 months, dd2 is 11 months.

our routine, that we've been doing for a few months now, is that both girls go upstairs for a bath at about 6pm, into pjs and back downstairs for some milk and usually a peppa pig on.

once they have had their milk and brushed teeth, at about 7pm usually, we go back upstairs and we all sit on dd1's bed and read a story together. when we've finished the story dd1 gets a kiss and a nightlight turned on, door left open.

dd2 gets a kiss and put in cot with favorite teddy and door left open, she doesn't seem to need a nightlight yet. they both chatter to themselves for about ten minutes and then they go to sleep.

i'd say you your eldest is too old to be lying with her when she goes to sleep, to be honest. also, if you don't start encouraging your youngest to go to sleep alone you'll end up with the same problem as you have with your eldest a year down the line. i know changing their sleep habits is really hard though, ours have been a work in progress for the last 2 years!

millie30 Sun 29-May-11 15:49:42

My DS aged 2 yrs 10 months has a bath about half 6, then gets in his pjs, goes downstairs for a drink and choses a book. Goes to bed about 7 and we have a story and then I also have to lie with him until he falls asleep. I don't mind because he falls asleep quickly and has always been good at going through the night once he's asleep. If I try to leave the room before he's asleep he gets up and follows me, gets upset, and then I have a battle on my hands. It works for us so I'll keep doing it.

NamyMcChanger Sun 29-May-11 15:54:02

It's up to you, we continued staying with ours until they didn't want to us to anymore.

It's a bit of a bind at the time, but you will miss it like cazy when they are too old smile

FoofffyShmoofffer Sun 29-May-11 15:57:14

We were roughly the same. DS was 4 before he would go to bed and be left to go to sleep on his own. We couldn't just lie there either it was endless singing too. We eventually employed the gradually moving further and further out of the room until he was going off on his own with us sat on the stairs. It seemed arduous at the time but looking back it wasn't too bad.

We had to rock DD to sleep in our arms until almost 2. Then we bought her a toddler bed and she was so thrilled with it from the first night she got in and went off on her own after a few renditions of Twinkle Twinkle.

Nothing stays the same and unless this is causing you huge problems maybe just go with it for a bit.

barbarasgal Sun 29-May-11 16:07:12

those of you who have more than one child, how do you get them both to bed if they both need lying with/cuddling/singing to sleep?

if my dh is away, i wouldn't be able to manage that, i don't know what the baby would be doing whilst i was lying with my eldest.

that said, if its works for you and you're happy with it sunflowergirl then stick with it. it doesn't really matter what others do i guess, as long as you are happy with your own routine.

25goingon95 Sun 29-May-11 19:38:41

If both my DDs needed lying with until they fell asleep then i would do the baby first and settle the older child in her bedroom with a toy or even infront of the tv with some milk and a light snack until i could be with her.

My DDs are 5 and 17 months old. Our routine goes like this:

5.45pm: both get in the bath

6.15pm: Out, dressed and warm milk for both then teeth brushed and a bit of peppa pig.

7pm: take baby to her cot, cuddles kisses and in she goes with her dummy and blankie.

7.15pm: DD gets into bed and has a story. Kisses cuddles and lights out by 7.30pm

Both DDs chatter to themselves for about 5 minutes then fall asleep.

I think as long as you are all happy with the routine then its fine.

babybythesea Sun 29-May-11 19:52:44

I have a dd aged 2.4.

At the moment, we take her up at 7.15ish for a bath, followed by a story, a bottle of milk and into her cot. We put a nightlight on (although she doesn't really need it and doesn't miss it if we forget). Once she's gone up for a bath, the rule is that she doesn't come back downstairs. We don't need to stay in the room with her once she's in her cot and she can talk to herself for up to an hour before dozing off.

We put the nightlight on because she is prone to nightmares, and then can't settle herself, and I need to see what I'm doing!

We got into this pattern at about 10 months when she needed to be rocked to sleep every night. My husband and I just weren't seeing enough of each other so we did controlled crying (a very gentle version that we cobbled together ourselves!). (Started by staying in the room with her, stroking her back and picking her up for a minute if she got too hysterical, gradually staying next to her without stroking her, then moving gradually away from the cot, until the final 'stand outside the room and go in every ten minutes if needed'. It took about 2 weeks from start to end to get her to sleep on her own.

It works for us. Particularly since we tend to eat after she's gone to bed which means we can sometimes be eating as late as 8.30 - lying in bed with her would take extra time out of our evening which flies past quickly enough as it is. But that's the thing - it works for us. She goes to bed quite late for her age, because she still naps in the afternoon. She is seriously cranky by bedtime if she doesn't nap, and her Dad wouldn't see her when he got home from work if she went to bed much earlier. We have a friend with a dd the same age and her dd goes to bed much much earlier - which suits them.

If it's worrying you, then yes, maybe it needs to change. If it's fine for you, then stay with it!

clairefromsteps Sun 29-May-11 20:30:49

When my two were about 9 months old they had bath at six, bottle, story and in bed by seven. The routine was pretty much the same at 2.3, although the bottle had become a beaker by then. They're creatures of habit and a routine has always worked really well for them. They've always gone to bed awake, but only because they've never minded going to bed on their own. A friend of mine had children who needed the reassurance of having her near, but once it got logistically difficult (three children in three separate rooms) they did a gradual-withdrawal type thing, where they would inch a little bit closer to the door every night and she reckoned that worked quite well.

To be honest, if what you're currently doing works for you then I would just be tempted to leave it. You hear of very few 27 year olds who still need their mum to lay next to them until they drift off, so it's unlikely to affect them much in latter life. However, if it's becoming a problem for you then think about changing it.

Sunflowergirl2011 Sun 29-May-11 20:32:30

Thanks everyone, lots to think about here. I realy appeciate all the advice/info.
Babybythesea- we also have our dinner once my oldest is asleep and often don't get to eat until 8:30/9 which is a pain!
Barberasgal- Luckily it isn't often that one of us have to do bdtime on our own but when we do we eithr try to get the baby to doze downstairs and then put the toddler to bed or (I) take the baby up with me and feed her to sleep while lying next to the toddler.
I'm not sure if its fine for us realy - its been like this since DD2 was born so in one way fed up with it but in another don't know what we would do with a whole free evening!
NannyMcchanger - we tell ourselves that on a regular bais!

Rebecca41 Sun 29-May-11 20:37:12

Both of my children wanted me to stay with them till they were asleep at that age, which is what I did. It's really common I think, although you won't hear many Mums at toddler groups admitting to it!

My older DS is now 5 and goes to sleep on his own after bath/story/cuddle. My younger DS is 2 and has bath/books/songs/cuddle, and likes me to stay with him until he's asleep. If I've got a lot to do that evening I can get away with leaving him when he's almost asleep, but sometimes he then wanders out on to the landing to find me. I just return him quietly to bed, and repeat this process till he sleeps - usually 4-5 times.

Do what works for you now. They won't need you there for ever!

NessaG Sun 29-May-11 20:40:15

My DD is now 5, never had problems with her as a sleeper and no set routine Im flexible, if we eat late etc.. then we skip bath and have it in the morning. Now I have both my ds is 7 months, we have tea @ 6.00 I put the bottle on, we go up have a bath do teeth, pick a story and snuggle on the couch while ds has bottle reading, we do some singing when he is finished. Then we sing the clock goes tick tock the clock goes tick tock the clock goes tick tock its time to go to bed, night night laila, night night nathan night night mummy lets go up the stairs. We repeat it when we get there and sing lets get tucked in. kiss soft music on for ds. Half 7 out like a light

LadyOfTheCuntryManor Sun 29-May-11 20:47:08

I think you're making a rod for your own back both lying with dd1 and cradling dd2.

My ds is 15 months. He has a bath at 6, goes into the nursery to put his jammies on, has some water from his beaker while sat on my/or my dh's lap has a cuddle and is put down on his back in the dark. He sleeps from 6.30 to 8.30 every night and has done since he was 11 weeks old.

You need to break the habit, do one at a time. There'll be screams and tantrums but it's a case of biting the bullet and getting through it-shouldn't last longer than a week before a new routine is in place.

Do you read to dd1 before "lying with her"?

Fernie3 Sun 29-May-11 20:48:29

our basic routine is
5:30 younger two (2 hrs old and 10 months old) in bath and to bed
Then next older two either in bath or shower (4 and 6) the six year old sometimes showers on her own other times she hops inn with her brother. Then either reading or just straight to bed to play ds for Half an hour before sleep time. We don't rock the babies to sleep but if they are upset we go to them and calm them down. Any illness etc is a free pass to mummy and daddies bed grin

Sunflowergirl2011 Sun 29-May-11 21:53:32

Thanks everyone.
Rebecca41- I suspect you are right about people not admitting to it which is why I wanted to post on here - get some honesty to help me get some perspective (one way or the other)
Ladyofthecuntrymanor - am v jelous of your routine! We do read to DD1. We hav been thinking about trying to break them both, one at a time but wanted some back up info first (and time to build up our energy to face it) before we decide whether to stick with what we've got or go into battle smile

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