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to insist DD stays in own bed?

(3 Posts)
pjmama Sat 04-Jul-09 10:04:10

My DD 2.9 is an angel for bed usually. She goes to bed without any fuss, snuggles down and sleeps through for 12 hours. On the odd occasion I've tried to put her in with us, when she's been poorly and restless she's always asked to go back to her own bed - seems to like her own space and calls it "my pink bed".

However 2 nights ago she woke screaming at 4am, obviously having had a nightmare - this is the first time this has happened. She wasn't making much sense at the time, just kept saying "little bug" and "hide hide" and screamed if I put her down. So for the first time ever, she was happy to come and get in with us, where she went back to sleep.

The day after every so often she'd start saying the same sort of thing and getting upset again, obviously remembering the dream. From what I can gather, I think it must have involved some kind of bug or spider under her duvet biting her legs.

Came to bedtime last night and the poor kid just would not get into her bed, she was terrified! Particularly of putting her legs under the covers. I stripped the bed to show her nothing was there, and brought in Henry the big stuffed bulldog (who chases away bad dreams!), but no reassurances I could think of seemed to help. We ended up rocking her to sleep in the chair and then putting her down. She woke at 5am and wouldn't get back into bed. She wasn't hysterical this time, but she was adamant she wasn't getting back in - so she ended up in with us again.

I've no experience of dealing with nightmares and am not sure how to tackle this? Do I insist that she stays in her own bed, but stay with her, be reassuring etc and try to gradually retreat? Or do I allow her some leeway i.e. sleeping with us a bit until a bit of time has passed and she's got her confidence back? I feel like I should be firm and make her stay in her bed, so as not to set up bad habits blah blah - but she's not being naughty here, she's just really shaken up by this bad dream so I don't want to be too harsh?

Has anyone else had to handle something like this? Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.

Tortington Sat 04-Jul-09 10:12:16

i think you should take her to buy a new bug busting quilt cover and pillow set - maybe one of those net things that hangs over the bed - to keep them out.

then tug her in tight at night

and put the bug busting newly bought and chosen by her - lamp - night-light.

maybe even one of those baby light things that projects stars and shapes onto the ceiling - at the side of her bed and when she turns it on - the bugs can't get in - and if she wakes up - she just has to turn it on again

alteratively there is the phone call to the tooth fairy - she is v. good friends with ZAPPILINA the fairy queen of bugs. zappilina could send her an e-mail - or you could have a conversation with her - and she can tell you how she has told all the bugs that they aren't allowed into her bedroom any more. and if she finds any to contact her immediatley and she will tell them off - then to make the bugs nice things to laugh at you could say " oh zappilina is cross with the bugs, she says that they are not allowed to play out today becuase they frightened you. Except for MR bumblebee - he is lovely and he needs to protect the flowers. Incy the spider is zaps best friend and he said he will keep a look out - he;s a lovely chap he is married to mrs spider and they have 3 children wilfred, winny and womble - ha ha ha dd....silly mr spider called his little girl womble"

you know make them more friendly characters.

Grendle Sat 04-Jul-09 10:30:04

Personally, I would take her into my bed. However, custardo's suggestion is also good smile. It depends on your preference, and ultimately what works with her.

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