Argh I want to scream!!(9 Posts)
So I don't drip feed here's the back story: I'm a fairly recently single mum to DD who is nearly 4, her dad never was very good at being a dad and knowing how to look after her and I disagreed with almost everything parenting wise with my exPIL. My family help me out a lot with looking after DD whilst working and ex has her every other weekend. Since she was a baby she's never been a "good" sleeper, but since her dad and I split up it's just horrific, we have ended up co-sleeping most nights.
Now the problem, everyone is still letting her nap, the main issue here is that they will let her have an hour at 4pm ish then when I pick her up after the weekend and after work, she doesn't want to sleep at bedtime. Tonight I have been trying for 4 1/2 hours to get her off to sleep. She has only just dropped off, this is because ex and exPIL let her have a nap early Sunday evening for an hour, she then didn't go to sleep Sunday night until 11:30pm, she was up at 7:30am for nursery and was obviously tired and grumpy, unfortunately I had to go to work so DD had to go to nursery. My DSis who picks DD up from nursery some afternoons whilst I am still working till 5pm had her, let her nap at 4pm for an hour and 10 minutes, this meant a massive battle tonight and no sleep until just before midnight. Fortunately she doesn't have to get up for nursery in the morning and I have the day off work but AIBU for feeling really frustrated by everyone's lack of common sense?
I understand that she's tired and I wouldn't want her to be either but surely that late in the afternoon, play with her to keep her awake not just stick her in front of the TV and then I can 'reset' the cycle by getting her to bed early.
if you managed to get through that!
I can totally understand why you're frustrated but does everyone know your struggle with getting her to sleep? Do they know you don't want her napping? Do they understand why? You're going to have to be direct and assertive (but not forgetting these people are doing you favours and you need them!)
That's the thing Catherine they do, my DSis has watched me literally fall apart over it she knows that every bedtime is a battle anyway, and I have anxiety and depression and the non-sleeping thing sets me off. DD's dad knows too as we lived together until we split up last year, he now lives with his parents so you would think he would have some consideration.
I am always mindful of the help I receive and not rocking the boat as I am also so grateful for it. I guess that's why I have posted it in AIBU, I probably won't have the balls to say anything to them assertively but I just feel like I need to get it off my chest tonight, it's been a really bloody difficult night!
Bed time has turned into a huge negative association.
I think you need to back right off and re think. Change everything about it and re approach.
Your dd is 4 so presumable pretty verbal.
Outside of the bed time situation have a chat about what things she think would help her settle. Prompt her gently with the different steps that need to happen and really wait to hear what she comes out with if you let her ramble on a bit.
The main thing that I found worked when things got rough at bed time was giving her control in a measured way.
So once all the teeth brushing and story type stuff once done and it was time to actually lights off and lie down I would always give her a cuddle.
When I broke away to leave she would tell me she was scared and onto the merry go round we would go.
One day something clicked and instead of asking her what she was scared of I said
"You don't need to tell me your scared of what you actually mean is I still need more cuddles. It's ok to ask for more cuddles"
"Mummy I need more cuddles"
"Of course, I will cuddle you for as long as you need me too and when you're done I'll go and have my cup of tea. You just tell me when you're done"
She did push and test the first night we cuddled for about 7 mins, I was just wondering how I'd get out of the corner when she said
"I'm done good night mum"
It's never been as long since.
I think being given the opportunity to say she was ready was really helpful.
Whilst it's great that your family help you out , I think it must be easier for them if she falls asleep - no need to entertain her. You need to be very firm and tell them it's making life very difficult for you .
I would change contact and "let" ex and pil have her Sunday night and get her up Monday morning, at least that would be one less problem
You could try putting on your pj's so it's "you can have a cuddle/another story/whatever and then Mummy is going to have one more cup of tea as she's tired too." The unsaid implication being you're off to bed.
That would do my head in too. for you op.
I feel.for you op, I'd rather cover my body in paper cuts and then roll around in lemon juice then let my DS have a nap after 4pm. I don't know of there is much you can do other than keep pushing the point to them and suggesting other ways of stopping her from getting grumpy (or suggest they encourage her to have a nap around 2pm).
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