To think DH is rushing things unrealistically?

(93 Posts)
SpringInTheStep Mon 15-Jun-15 13:19:28

We've had over 2 weeks of 2 year old sleep regression.

We're still getting undisturbed sleep, but it's one hell of a job to get DC to actually go to sleep in the first place. It can take anything from 30 minutes to several hours.

A drag though it is, I'm grateful that we're getting our sleep, and all we're losing out on is our evenings, which is only spent cleaning or watching TV anyway, so no big loss in the big picture really.

But every time DH is present, he hurries it. Like today, DC was playing - but at least not crying - whilst I sat in the bedroom beside the bed.

After 15-20 minutes DH said it wasn't working and so it was time to push DC out in the pushchair and try to encourage sleep that way instead. I gave in as I am sick of fighting DH and trying to tell him to please be more patient.

Yesterday evening I asked DH to sit and talk to me on the stairs because that only took 10 minutes for DC I fall asleep the last 2 times we did that, which to my mind is brilliant progress. DH said its not normal to sit on the stairs and did a screwing-finger-into-side-of-head motion at me, implying I am somehow crazy to even consider it. He just can't (or won't) see the big picture and view it as short term pain for long term gain.

I'm getting pissed off with his attitude towards it and his failure to accept it will take a long time. Every night. Possibly for a few more weeks yet. And his inability to give it time is stressing me out more than the process of sitting with a child who refuses to sleep!

I think the problem is that DH wants to reintroduce pacifiers, which he believes was the cause of this problem in the first place. Technically it wasn't, as DC slept beautifully the first few nights until getting a sick bug 4/5 nights later, then it all went horribly wrong and has stayed that way. Perhaps it's coincidentally a 2 year old sleep regression - we might never know.

But dc's teeth are quite pronounced at the top, and two independent local dentists have strongly advised not returning to the pacifier because there is a strong possibility that it will cause permanent damage, even at 2 years old. When I said Dr Google suggests it's only a massive problem around the age of 4, I was told it's still a big risk, especially as we're already seeing visible signs of malocclusion, and they wouldn't suggest it's worth taking. My health visitor also reiterated this.

But, for as long as DH is sitting on the sidelines hankering after some pacifier reintroduction, I feel he will not get the patience game and it is doing my head in hmm

Aibu?

MrsNextDoor Mon 15-Jun-15 13:26:40

Firstly I don't think it's helpful to button onto phrases like "2 year sleep regression"

These disturbed periods can and do crop up from birth to...well...onwards!

Teething, growing, developing...they can all contribute to a child or toddler finding sleep more of an issue than previously.

I think you will find things much easier if you agree on on routine and stick to it....don't take DC out in pushchair at two! It's far too old for that route...that's something which can help a baby...but a toddler who'se been well fed and exercised needs the same routine nightly.

If that involves one or the other of you popping your head round the door now and then to say a few words of comfort if they're crying inconsolably then fine...but for goodness' sake don't sit on the stairs or by his cot.

Agree that dummy shouldn't be used...but it will be far easier on you all to minimize the interactions after bedtime.

Denimwithdenim00 Mon 15-Jun-15 13:26:43

I think I see your dhs view not about the dummy but your sitting waiting for the child to go to sleep.

Loosing your evening with your dh should be a big deal.

You need to get firmer with your ds. Get your routine sorted and every time he comes out of the bedroom put him back.

It's a cop out blaming teeth. Dummies, tummy upset etc.

Sorry your approach would drive me mad. Kids shouldn't be ruling your evening as this is valuable time for you and your dh.

bonzo77 Mon 15-Jun-15 13:26:52

YANBU. Your DH is being ridiculous. You are trying to teach the toddler to self settle. Your DH wants to reintroduce props. Ridiculous. And point out to him that adults don't just go to bed, alone, then fall asleep. They often go with someone else, have a chat or a read or a think then fall asleep. Children are no different. Your DH's nasty "you're crazy" hand signals are very very unpleasant. Is he always such a dick?

bonzo77 Mon 15-Jun-15 13:29:11

denim sitting and chatting with the DH on the stairs for 10 minutes is hardly losing your evening. In fact it's a nice opportunity for a catch up without TV, phones, Internet or housework to distract.

Denimwithdenim00 Mon 15-Jun-15 13:29:47

To add op yes can the pushchair. If your 2 year old is in a pushchair he shouldn't be he should be walking. Help tire him out too

Honestly it's really easy to stay in the baby mode but he's 2. He needs to learn to self settle and that bed time is bed time.

MrsNextDoor Mon 15-Jun-15 13:31:06

Bonzo Having fallen into the trap of sitting near the child when one of mine was having trouble sleeping, I'd say it's a bad idea. It's like putting a plaster on a wound that needs a stitch...does nothing and just prolongs the pain.

Denimwithdenim00 Mon 15-Jun-15 13:33:12

bonzo the op doesn't see the lost evening as a big deal as she's cleaning etc.

Sitting on the stairs for what reason? To hear the child get out of bed or cry? Most children will see this as a sign that mummy expects them to come out of the room. It's pointless.

LittleMissRayofHope Mon 15-Jun-15 13:35:05

I had this with dd. and ExH (at the time still h) was similar.
After 5/10 mins of her refusing to sleep (but happily playing or chatting in her bed) you would have thought the world was ending by his attitude.

'This isn't normal' 'she JUST WONT sleep' 'what is wrong with her' etc etc.
I just used to full on ignore him and continue with my method. I did gradual retreat and the pick up put down type method but with silence and no eye contact.
She got there again in the end.

We never used dummies so I have no experience/advice there.

As PP said, labelling things is a bad idea. It gives you 'a reason', an explanation for the child's behaviour.
Many many things can interrupt sleep.
Dd (2.11) is currently teething and crying through the night (last molar yay!) but she just needs me to give her a quick cuddle and she is asleep again before I leave the room.

Personally, I'd I were you I would tell him to back off and let you deal with the DC without interruption or stress/tension. And if after 'c' amount of nights you have made no progress then he can take over. But pushing a 2 yr old to sleep each night is a very bad habit to get into!

MrsNextDoor Mon 15-Jun-15 13:36:28

Denim having been there, I expect it's because if the child hears the voice close at hand it will calm down....a little...but ime it just makes the issue worse in the end.

I was still sitting by my DD2 when she was almost 4 and by that time, you're ready to slam your head into the wall! It's always best to sort it out asap....as in leave them to settle. Of course, hysterical crying can be dealt with by a brief word but not lifting them out of the cot or sitting with them.

SpringInTheStep Mon 15-Jun-15 13:38:48

MrsNextDoor; "I think you will find things much easier if you agree on on routine and stick to it....don't take DC out in pushchair at two! It's far too old for that route...that's something which can help a baby...but a toddler who'se been well fed and exercised needs the same routine nightly."

I am sorry if I didn't make it clearer, the pushchair thing was just for daytime nap. DC needs 1.5-2 hours still, and is a bear with a sore head if it's not taken! Nighttime routines don't involve pushchairs. That further cements my belief that the pushchair isn't the answer though, as it only adds to the confusion and inconsistency, I think.

"If that involves one or the other of you popping your head round the door now and then to say a few words of comfort if they're crying inconsolably then fine...but for goodness' sake don't sit on the stairs or by his cot"
I would agree with you if it was not for the fact that we get non-stop inconsolable screams where breathing becomes difficult and it sounds like a large vomit is on its way! Otherwise I'd quite happily stick my head round the door every once in a while. But as soon as we get halfway to the door of the bedroom, the panicky shouts begin again.

SpringInTheStep Mon 15-Jun-15 13:43:10

Denimwithdenim00 "Loosing your evening with your dh should be a big deal.

You need to get firmer with your ds. Get your routine sorted and every time he comes out of the bedroom put him back."

It's really not that much of a big deal as he only watches HIS programmes, unless I specifically ask to watch one of mine! We've got a bunch of movies to watch but often need the early night instead. He isn't much of a one to help around the house too, so I am often the one getting school bags ready and sorting breakfast for the next day, etc, but thats another topic!

As for sorting out the routine, we have a really good one. Bath, milk, teeth clean, story, cuddles and then bedtime.

DC doesn't come out of the bedroom, we still use the cotbed thankfully, so that problem is yet to come! Maybve I should switch to the new bed now though and avoid doing this all over again?!

minibmw2010 Mon 15-Jun-15 13:43:17

OP I have huge sympathies because every time we had a developmental leap we would also have a step backwards in terms of sleep but I never deviated from his routine.

One thing I noticed you said is that he is playing while you sit on his bed? Why is he playing? Is this after bed and stories or whatever your nightly routine is? If it is then I'm afraid your little one may be playing you a bit. We have bed, pj's, stories in bed and then bed. End of. He'll cry at times but it's for attention. I know he's not hungry, thirsty or needing the toilet. After that it's bedtime. Absolutely not to the pushchair.

purplemurple1 Mon 15-Jun-15 13:44:01

One of mine likes a little talking in the evening so we just leave the radio on for an hour. He doesn't need it when he wakes in the night.

Denimwithdenim00 Mon 15-Jun-15 13:44:36

Yes * Mrs* agree.

Op I really feel for you and of course your ds doesn't need to fall asleep at once. A play and look at books is great but the crying etc is just him trying to get his own way ( and why not) but the more you pander to him the worse it gets.

See it this way. He doesn't really need you there with him. He needs to learn. He won't stop breathing with a tantrum. He will learn if you are both consistent and firm.

It is bloody hard but you have to crack this or it just goes on and on

SpringInTheStep Mon 15-Jun-15 13:44:54

bonzo77 "Your DH's nasty "you're crazy" hand signals are very very unpleasant. Is he always such a dick?"

Thanks for your understanding. He can be a bit that way when we disagree sad

SpringInTheStep Mon 15-Jun-15 13:47:45

Denimwithdenim00

Sitting on the stairs for what reason?

To talk softly and give comfort, without having to actually be in the same room. It seemed a step closer to distancing ourselves, and my sneaky plan was to go down a few steps every night until we're at the bottom of the stairs, and then maybe find the 10 minutes becomes 5, and then nothing.

MrsNextDoor Mon 15-Jun-15 13:48:18

Agree about no playing OP...it's confusing for them. It's better for them to learn that sleep is sleep and play is play and the two don't mix.

As for the nap...what time is he having that? Mine both dropped theirs at around 18 months and yes, they got a bit grumpy...but it DID help at bedtime...I used to have to keep them awake come about 6.00pm as they were ready to drop...but it's not hard to distract them...obviously they'd occasionally drop off in the buggy whilst we were out and about but the whole lie down, have a midday nap? nope...got shot of it and no harm done.

Kewcumber Mon 15-Jun-15 13:48:53

I have an adopted child for whom many of the more traditional sleep methods were inadvisable. I did however find "No cry sleep solution" for toddler very very helpful if only to give me the reassurance I needed to stick with what worked for us.

MrsNextDoor Mon 15-Jun-15 13:49:06

I think your stair plan is good OP. Why don't you agree with DH that this is the plan, no playing, no dummy...just that. And show him this thread.

SpringInTheStep Mon 15-Jun-15 13:49:35

MrsNextDoor
"hysterical crying can be dealt with by a brief word"

I wish it could. But it often doesn't.

MrsNextDoor Mon 15-Jun-15 13:50:32

I know OP....I didn't write that sentence well....I do think your stair plan is probably the best one...a step lower each night.

WindMeUpAndLetMeGo Mon 15-Jun-15 13:50:50

Sorry but I think it's time for some tough love. The more you play along the worse it will get, stand tall and stick to your guns, bedtime is bedtime - end of.

I do think changing the cotbed into a bed now may save you doing this again in the future.

SpringInTheStep Mon 15-Jun-15 13:51:47

minibmw2010
"One thing I noticed you said is that he is playing while you sit on his bed? Why is he playing? Is this after bed and stories or whatever your nightly routine is? "

No I don't sit on the bed, only in the chair in the room. The play is singing to self and playing with toes, or hiding under covers and trying to play peekaboo, but of course I don't look and certainly don't engage in play. There are no toys or books in the cotbed.

SpringInTheStep Mon 15-Jun-15 13:54:48

Kewcumber
"I have an adopted child for whom many of the more traditional sleep methods were inadvisable. I did however find "No cry sleep solution" for toddler very very helpful if only to give me the reassurance I needed to stick with what worked for us."

I will look into that, thank you. We initially thought we'd try cry it out method, but the literature seemed to suggest it's too late by 2 years old, especially if they're going through separation anxiety. Daytime clinginess is horrendous at the moment, and has never been like this before!

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