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AIBU to expect DD to nap at nursery?

(45 Posts)
kivvi Wed 11-May-16 20:01:29

DD is 3y and 3m. DH and I both work full-time so she is at nursery all day. Until recently, she was napping for around 1 hour every day, but a month or so ago, she started telling the staff that she 'doesn't need to nap any more'. She's been one of the only ones in her group still napping, so she was going down with the slightly younger kids and they don't have a separate room for sleeping - just a curtained off area, which must be hard for her if she can hear her friends playing.

For a while the staff continued trying to get her to nap, but apparently after 30 or 45 mins they would give up, as she just wouldn't. So I think now they have stopped even trying. But she pretty much always naps at weekends and on holiday, usually for 2 hours (or sometimes 3), and she has been super-grumpy in the evenings recently. We only get home at about 6pm and start putting her to bed from about 7.15, and sometimes it feels like we just get tantrums the whole time we get with her, which makes me frustrated and sad.

I know that she will stop needing naps at some point, but I'm not sure she's ready to drop them yet. It would be different it we could put her to bed at 6pm while she adjusts and then gradually move bedtime back again, but that's just not really an option given that we only get home at 6!

Haudyerwheesht Wed 11-May-16 20:08:42

They can't MAKE her sleep though and won't want her disturbing the younger ones. Both my kids dropped their naps when they turned 3 but they were only 30-40 minute naps and they were BY FAR the only ones of their peers still napping.

PaulAnkaTheDog Wed 11-May-16 20:10:55

Short of thumping her over the head there's nothing they can do.

NerrSnerr Wed 11-May-16 20:13:18

How can they make her nap? It seems they were trying to get her to sleep.

NeedACleverNN Wed 11-May-16 20:14:37


Most kids don't nap by her she and she's got so much going on, she won't want to nap and miss out.

All you can do is either put her to bed earlier or grit your teeth

insancerre Wed 11-May-16 20:14:55

It's a transition period and it will be tough for a while but the staff can't make her sleep
Just because she has a meltdown m the evening doesn't mean she will be able to sleep at nursery

kivvi Wed 11-May-16 20:16:14

Absolutely, I know they can't MAKE her sleep. TBH I think they were going beyond the call of duty when they were sitting next to her for 30-45 mins! It's not so much that I think the nursery staff should be doing something different - more that I'm not sure if IABU to try to convince DD that she needs to nap at nursery... (star chart or something?) Do we just have to put up with the overtired tantrums or is there another solution that I haven't thought of?

hobnobsaremyfave Wed 11-May-16 20:17:23

What do you expect them to do?
Two of mine dropped their naps bang on their second birthday angry
Two napped until well after their third birthday.
Not a lot I could do in either situation

insancerre Wed 11-May-16 20:17:55

I don't think there is a solution
She is learning to listen to her body
Which should be encouraged

NeedACleverNN Wed 11-May-16 20:19:54

You just have to put up with the over tiredness

Dd is 3.2 and she dropped her naps about 4 months ago. She wasn't ready for it but I couldn't make her sleep.

It was tough going for about a month. She's better now but she will occasionally have a grump. Sometimes she will even have a sleep.

Yesterday for example she actually asked to go bed for a sleep. I let her go thinking she was just messing about but no she had a 45 minute sleep.

Afreshstartplease Wed 11-May-16 20:20:34

My youngest started dropping naps at 18 months! Think yourself lucky you got this long

AliensInUnderpants12 Wed 11-May-16 20:20:36

I think you've been lucky she has kept up day time naps to this age tbh...sorry! When DS gave up his daytime naps he would have naps some days and other days he would skip his naps, the days he skipped his naps gradually increased.

Gwenci Wed 11-May-16 20:20:51

I wouldn't bother trying to convince your DD. (Personally I think you've had an amazing run getting her to nap until she over 3!!)

No matter at what age they drop their nap (2 for me sad), it's always a grumpy transition. Grit your teeth and work through it. She'll adjust and become less ratty.

CottonSock Wed 11-May-16 20:21:25

Same happened to my daughter, she tends to catch up a bit on sleep at weekends. Just get her to bed as early as you can .

curren Wed 11-May-16 20:21:31

Unfortunately when toddlers drop naps it takes them a while to get used to it.

They can't force her to nap, just like they couldn't force her to stay awake.

She will probably get used to it quicker if you drop the naps at weekends too. Three isn't too young to stop napping.

CottonSock Wed 11-May-16 20:22:46

(And she was two when this happened not 3, you are lucky indeed)

hazeyjane Wed 11-May-16 20:23:04

It is annoying, that she is grumpy, but I think a lot of dc have stopped napping by this age, or have sporadic naps - dd2 used to have a nap for a couple of days (usually weekend) then not have a nap for days, gradually building up in stroppy tiredness until she would nap again!

It does seem as if it I going to be very hard, if not impossible to get her to nap at nursery.

Muskateersmummy Wed 11-May-16 20:23:52

I'm afraid yabu. They are less likely to nap at nursery because it's all very exciting and they might miss something, so it's inevitable that as the nap starts to be dropped you will find they don't have them there but do at home with you. The exact same thing happened with our dd (but probably nearly a year earlier!!). The transition from napping to not napping is always a bit grumpy.

kivvi Wed 11-May-16 20:34:44

Thank you all for the feedback. It sounds we are going to have to grit our teeth and just hope things get better! (Now if only I can convince DH that DD stopping naps isn't the end of the world.)

HereIAm20 Wed 11-May-16 20:40:14

If naptime is now a thing of the past then her bedtime should come forward a bit to 7 maybe with bath at 6.30. I assume she has tea at nursery. This will stop the pm grumpiness

TiredOfSleep Wed 11-May-16 20:42:00

Do they have quiet time when others nap? Could you bring bedtime any earlier than 7:15?

NeedACleverNN Wed 11-May-16 20:49:02

My dh thought the world was ending when Dd stopped napping. In reality it was tough but a normal part of growing up

HappyNevertheless Wed 11-May-16 20:52:52

Actually I agree with you.
The nursery my dcs went to would have put them down for a nap at that age if they still needed.
Yes she is one of the last to do that, and??

I would want to know what has changed that she doesn't fall asleep now (The amount of noise will have been the same before).
It might be that she is getting ready to drop her naps. It might be that she is napping at weekends because she is making up for it.
Or it might be that she has somehow learnt that she isn't supposed to sleep anymore! (Comments from the nursery staff or from other children)

I know that yoou are in a different situation but I would say you CAN make children nap at that age. I have spent a lot of time sitting down next to dc2 until he dropped off. Hard work but he needed it (and I needed it too!)

AcrossthePond55 Wed 11-May-16 20:53:15

Would changing her home PM routine help? Perhaps one of you bathes her when you get home whilst the other does dinner? That might relax her a bit and make her a bit less grumpy. Then dinner followed by whatever bedtime routine you have (story, song).

Cantstopeatingchocolate Wed 11-May-16 20:57:24

Unfortunately this is probably not the last time you'll have a grumpy child at bedtime. My DS is now 6 and a half and we have went through many cycles of sleeping well, then not sleeping. Going to bed at reasonable time to fighting sleep until he's at melting down point. 13 hours sleep to 10 hours and back again.
We find the cycles are around growth spurts or illnesses.....mostly. Last night was just an overtired, bloody minded little boy who wanted a bit of control that he wasn't getting.
When he was 3, I also worked full time and didn't pick him up til 7 some nights. I had a great childminder who started bedtime routine for me, washed, jammies and bed time story. I picked him up, got him home cleaned his teeth and tried to get him straight to bed. Worked some nights but not all. Deep breaths needed.

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