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Is our 2yo son getting enough sleep?

(23 Posts)
Smeags Tue 15-Nov-16 21:20:43


This is my first post on these forums, so hello. smile Thinks its going to be quite long but would really appreciate the advice. I'm a dad to a son who's just turned 2 ten days ago.

I work full time and about a month ago, mum got a job in a nursery, part time. We've sent our son to that same nursery. He goes into work with mum, and leaves when mum leaves.

When she got the job, she started a conversation. She had a choice of doing mornings or afternoons, and sat down with me to talk about what would be best. I said afternoons would be better all along, but in the end, she chose mornings anyway.

Before nursery, our son's routine was in bed at 8pm, and he'd have about 12 hours sleep at night, waking up naturally. Now, we put him to bed at 7.30pm and have to get him up at 6.30am so mum can get to work with him on time. I'm the one who wakes him up.... I feel absolutely horrible doing that, especially when hes in a deep sleep. And thats the first question: Is it considered really bad to be waking a 2 year old? Especially when in a deep sleep?

Now I'm worrying hes not getting enough sleep. I think its more important you get your sleep when you're at that age, right? At the moment, we're giving him 11 hours. Thats 1 hour less. He pretty much always has purple under his eyes now, and looks tired by bedtime. Mum says hes always had those purple patches. Tbh, I not sure. Maybe I'm only noticing them now that I'm worried about his sleep?

I do get stressed easily, and mum says I'm a worryer and am over-protective of our son.

So with this one, am I being unreasonable? Am I just worrying easily again? Or this time, am I right to be concerned? The reason we put him to bed when we do, is so that I can have a bit of quality time with him when I get in from work. I will put him to bed earlier if I have to, but that will mean giving up on a big chunk of time I get with him in the week.

I'm posting this following a really heated argument this morning. He's ill with a cough at the moment, and hardly slept last night because of it. When I got him up this morning, he looked awful. I said to mum "look at his eyes" and she wouldnt. She was rushing to get ready for work herself at the time.

The above question is the main reason for posting this. But also, am I being unreasonable by asking her to work afternoons instead of mornings? That way, he'd get to sleep til whenever he wanted in the morning. I'd get to see more of him, because we'd be able to put him to bed a bit later.
And the main reason she wants to do mornings is because the last 2 hours in an afternoon are less interesting (last 2 hours a day, the nursery move all kids and adults into one room to keep the ratios right).

Thanks for any advice. I'd appreciate it. And thanks for reading smile

icelollycraving Tue 15-Nov-16 21:31:02

If she has committed to mornings,then that's her contract isn't it?
I assume he can nap after lunch at nursery.
If change is this difficult for you then what could you change? Not your wife or partner but you. The obvious thing is an earlier bedtime.
She has just started a new job, let them both settle into their new routine. If your child is tired.get him to bed earlier. Yes,you'll miss your time but his need outweighs yours. In honesty I'd be a bit pissed off if my dh was laying all the blame of the tiredness at my door. Her wanting a more stimulating job by taking mornings shows she is looking at this as a long term prospect. Good for her.

soupmaker Tue 15-Nov-16 21:31:16

All kids are different, some need more sleep than others. Does your DS nap during the day? Does he sleep longer at weekends?

I do think YABU to expect your mum to arrange her work around what you want. But I've never had the option of family looking after my DC so just had to get on with working and juggling nursery pick ups and the like.

Can you organise to do less hours at your work so you have more time with your DS during the week?

Tiptoethr0ughthetulips Tue 15-Nov-16 21:31:17

This isn't your mum's problem, it's your's. She doesn't owe you child care, if you're concerned about his new routine then you really need to make alternative arrangements. Alternatively change his bed time to 18.30 that way he gets 12 hours.

Tiptoethr0ughthetulips Tue 15-Nov-16 21:33:25

Sorry, I read it as your mum, but do you actually mean your son's mum is your partner?

Lookinatu Tue 15-Nov-16 21:35:42

Hi op I can understand what you mean about the sleep however my ds is 4 and has always woke up at 6am as a result of this his bedtime is 7pm. It might be worth moving the bedtime a touch earlier to help and maybe he might need a longer nap on some days.

Smeags Tue 15-Nov-16 22:04:19

Yes when I said "mum", I meant my partner, and our son's mum. Just remembered theres the abbreviation OH isnt there, I'll use that in future!

Okay. Its pretty clear that I'd be wrong to ask her to do afternoons then. Thats what I thought already to be honest, so its not something that I pushed much.

It was more about his sleep. Because I am worried about it. But just didnt know if I'm worrying un-neccessarily? Does the purple always mean someones not getting enough sleep? (remember, OH did say hes always had this, although personally I cant remember).

Does it sound like hes not getting enough? Im not sure how significant it can be to a 2 year old, the difference between 11 and 12 hours?

Anyway, It sounds like I should be putting him to bed earlier then. Which is disappointing tbh, but I will do it - I dont want to harm him by not giving him enough sleep. I just miss him a hell of a lot when I'm away. I used to wish I could see more of him even when I was getting an hour a day with him, and now it'll be less.

Thanks for the replies. Its given me some perspective.

Smeags Tue 15-Nov-16 22:07:19

And I meant to say, yes he gets about an hour a day at naptime. That hasnt gone up since he started nursery.

We do give him a lie-in on weekends.

Would it be okay to carry on as we are, given the fact he has a lie-in on the weekend? Or would that still be harmful to him?

Capricornandproud Tue 15-Nov-16 22:12:13

Didn't want to read and run but you sound like an excellent Dad OP. If the world had more men like you in it, the world would be a better place x

5minutestobed Tue 15-Nov-16 22:14:38

My 3 year old has only ever slept 11 hours at night. I think you are worrying about nothing. If you think he's tired put him to bed earlier or see if he will nap. I'm sure he will get used to waking up earlier.

stouensbay Tue 15-Nov-16 22:17:40

Could you change your hours so that you take him to nursery so he can wake up later? Flexible working request for childcare reasons?

longdiling Tue 15-Nov-16 22:19:25

I dunno. Does your partner say he seems tired during the day? She may be more blasé about it if she sees him rushing around full of energy at nursery. Could he get up any later in the morning? A little bit later in the morning and a little earlier in the evening might be a good compromise.

Sunnydawn Tue 15-Nov-16 22:20:32

Honestly, I would put him to bed earlier for now. I know you will miss out onna bit of time, but that's nothing in the long run.

Also, from my rather distant memory, it is good to do nursery in the morning, as I think children dip a bit in the afternoon. I deliberately worked mornings for this reason.

StarryIllusion Tue 15-Nov-16 22:25:47

It sounds a very late bedtime for a toddler, especially when he has to get up so early. My 3 year old goes to bed at 6.30 to be up at 7.30 and doesn't nap if that helps.

DeleteOrDecay Tue 15-Nov-16 22:28:50

Couldn't you just put him to bed earlier? 8pm seems pretty late for that age anyway. I know they all vary but I have a 4yo and an 18mo and they are generally in bed for 7pm and they are more than ready for bed by that time.

lifeisaconundrumattimes Tue 15-Nov-16 22:30:54

I have to wake up my son at 7am every day to go to work.

It's just the way it is. He often doesn't fall asleep until 8pm despite being put to bed between 6:45-7:15.

We don't have any option really. I don't like waking him, but like your son he has 11hrs at night and 1 in the day so 12 overall which is enough according to the books etc.

That said, if he's been poorly, and is recovering we let him lie in and DH can take him into nursery a little later.

CosyCoupe88 Tue 15-Nov-16 22:36:36

My 2.5 year old goes to bed about 8.30pm wakes up at about 6.30am like us and has a 2 hour nap at nursery. He only gets home from nursery at 6 and he won't go to sleep any earlier even if we try.. Bath at 7. Stories at half past. Usually flaps around singing until 8.30ish. They're all different. SeeMs ok but I do sometimes wish we could get him home sooner. Even in his 4 days off nursery he usually isn't asleep until.8.30 thougj

FATEdestiny Tue 15-Nov-16 22:45:21


Try putting in a flexible working request with your work, so you don't need to leave until 9am to get to work.

Lots of dad's do this.

Then your wife can work morning, your son gets to sleep as much as he needs. Plus you get a few hours to patent solo while your partner is at work, which is great for bonding.

arethereanyleftatall Tue 15-Nov-16 22:53:39

I agree with you, I hate whenever I have to wake dc up, and they're 8 &6! Mine slept much more than that - about 15 hours a day at 2 (13 hours at night plus a 2 hour sleep in day), and now the both sleep between 11&12 hours every night.

Smeags Tue 15-Nov-16 23:19:02

Wow quite a mix now then (one person saying it sounds late for a toddler and someone else saying they put theirs to bed quite a bit later).

I guess I just have to play it by ear then. It is tougher at the moment when hes ill. sad

My OH has also said he'll get used to it. But then I worried, that that really means he'll just get used to putting up with it when his body actually wants more? (I did say I'm a worrier! And get anxious about a lot of things). I.e. I went a period where I was only getting about 6 hours a night. I got used to it and started waking at the same time every morning, but it was probably still bad for me.

Thanks capricornandproud. That was a nice thing to read. Do you say that because I want to spend more time with him? Tbh, it just feels like the normal thing to do and I get surprised by dads who dont want to see their kids much. I've got a good bond with him and we have fun together smile.

FATEDestiny... yeah the time I do have with him in the week is just me and him, which I agree, is good for bonding. And then weekends, we try to do stuff together.

DirtyDancing Tue 15-Nov-16 23:21:39

The only thing I will add is that nursery in general tires out 2 year olds. They often come home exhausted. It maybe more that than the 'missing' 1 hour. My nearly 3 year old is dropping naps now he is at preschool but he can catch up on sleep at the weekend and my day off. So he now has a longer nap at the weekend. Can you let your son sleep in at the weekends?

FATEdestiny Tue 15-Nov-16 23:22:41

My suggestion about flexitime though was to resolve your actual issue (having to wake him up).

You write like this is your partner's issue to solve.

You could start work later. That would solve the issue entirely.

w12newmum Wed 16-Nov-16 00:01:47

What FATEdestiny said. Or ask to start work earlier so you are home earlier and won't miss time with your son due to earlier bedtime. Try I think of solutions rather than focus on the possible problems.

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