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Waking up screaming and tantrumming

(5 Posts)
ifaistos Wed 27-Jul-11 10:26:57

Does anyone else's toddler wake up in a tantrum? 3yo has been waking up every morning screaming and flailing for months now. She demands that I go and pick her up and carry her into our bed. She used to just come on her own and get into bed with us and it would be fine. But now she'll get into our bed, grab my hair (another story), pull, demand her milk and whine and kick endlessly. It driving me mad.

I've started to tell her I'm not going to get up and carry her into my bed, but that she can come on her own if she likes. I've also explained that beds are for resting and cuddles, and not for screaming. She gets hysterical.

I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas as to why this might be happening? She goes to bed without fuss and loves her bedtime stories, so it's not that she's carrying over problems from the previous evening. That said, she's never been a good sleeper.

TheLemur Wed 27-Jul-11 10:58:52

She is maybe very hungry? Does she calm down after her milk? DS 3.11 can be a nightmare until I get cereal into him then he's a new child

livingonsaladalone Wed 27-Jul-11 12:07:23

We have exactly the same. Bedtimes also fine here, and he sleeps well - usuallyt 12 straight hours. I am at a loss as to why, really. DS is 2.11, and has been doing this on and off for probably almost a year now. It comes in phases, we''ll have a few awful weeks then a few better ones. He used to come into our bed, order his dad out (!!) then snuggle with me, but however long we stayed in bed for, the point where we actually got up was always an issue. Since DS2 arrived I'm usually up and downstairs when he wakes,and he kicks off when brought down. He can easily tantrum for the best part of an hour on bad days. He just wakes up so grumpy, and sometimes in what can ony be described as a complete rage. It goes beyond just being whingey.

We did start a sticker chart for "waking up happy", but all that happened was that he behaved reasonably until he got the sticker, then the meltdown started! I find it slightly better if we keep the mornings focused, i.e. up, dressed, breakfast, out.. in quick succession - but only slightly (and I often have to dress him with him flailing his arms about and screaming). CBeebies sometimes helps too blush - although the "wrong" programme can make things worse. Sorry, I've no advice but you're not alone. I'll be watching this thread closely.

Octaviapink Wed 27-Jul-11 15:30:26

Food sounds the likeliest solution - I'd be inclined to get some milk or cereal into them as soon as they get up rather than wait to get dressed or have cuddles or anything. Toddlers have VERY small reserves of energy and if they've been asleep for 10-12 hours are likely to be pretty hungry even if they don't know they are.

ifaistos Wed 27-Jul-11 15:56:48

You could be right, it could be hunger. Although once she's had her milk - about 1 small glassful - she refuses to have any more breakfast, so she can't be that hungry.
Assuming it's hunger, that means my insisting she get up and come to my bed on her own rather than me having to get up and go get her isn't going work.

@livingonsaladalone good to hear I'm not alone. Does the beginning of this phase coincide with the arrival of his new brother at all? Just thinking if you're up and with ds2 when ds1 wakes up, rather than in bed where he can have you all to himself, maybe that's unsettling him?

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