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How to get your toddler to nap without the 20mins of crying first

(29 Posts)
Cupcakemummy85 Sun 30-Sep-12 16:35:21

Hi everyone. I just wanted to ask quickly how does everyone get their children to nap? I've been putting my daughter down to nap still awake since I stopped breast feeding (7 months) and she still cries for twenty mins minimum everytime she naps!! Surely this isn't going to last forever?!!! She is 15 months now. Everyday I put her for a nap in the morning and she cries then goes to sleep, not too much if a problem. The afternoon is the biggest battle. I've never forced her to sleep in the afternoon but I can clearly see she is tired and very irritable. She will happily nap in the car in the afternoon but screams if its anywhere else. The screaming is really getting to me now, it's so upsetting!! Advise pleeeeease!! :s

aimingtobeaperfectionist Sun 30-Sep-12 16:42:36

I have to get my DD to sleep for every nap. She's only 4 months so not too concerned but I'll be interested to see if anyone's got any ideas as she has only dropped to sleep by herself once since she was tiny!

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 30-Sep-12 17:11:02

Does she really need two naps? Have you tried moving the morning nap to later, say giving her lunch at 11ish and then putting her down.

I can't do links at the moment but try googling askdrsears refuses nap.

Cupcakemummy85 Sun 30-Sep-12 17:29:43

I'm not sure 11 lunch would work. Good suggestion though, thank you. But she would b too tired for her lunch then. It's a real tricky one. In the afternoon she gets super grumpy!! Only swings in the park (if its a nice day and not raining like always look) or peppa pig keeps her in a good mood. She is too tired to play sad and too grumpy. Bed time is normally at seven.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 30-Sep-12 17:34:31

When they are drooping a nap I've been known to give them a snack if the are really tired and their lunch when they wake up.

I really would consider reducing her naps to one.

Cupcakemummy85 Sun 30-Sep-12 17:59:36

Oh ok yes perhaps that could work. I do give her her breakfast first and then her milk before her nap. So should i try to put her to bed 11.30? And a snack mid morning to keep her going?

BabydollsMum Mon 01-Oct-12 18:30:56

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news but that sounds to me like she's ready to drop a nap. [ducks]. Sorry!! DD is 19 months and dropped to one nap at about 13 months I think. Now, like clockwork (and this is coming from the most lazy least routine-enforcing mummy there is), just before 1pm she'll take herself into the corner of the living room, lie down and pretend to snore. I take her upstairs and she's asleep before her head hits the pillow. She also sleeps for exactly one hour to the minute, which is just weird.

Cupcakemummy85 Mon 01-Oct-12 20:04:22

It's fine if my dd wants to drop her afternoon nap but I just don't understand why she is soooo tired at about three but won't go to sleep sad it's confusing!! She napped today at eleven woke at half twelve had lunch then was tired at three but wouldn't go to sleep. So she was a very grumpy little Madame this afternoon. Some people suggested lunch at half eleven then put her to bed but I'm not sure she could last until half eleven. My dh works from home and comes in every two seconds telling me she sounds tired. ( how annoying! Lol)

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 01-Oct-12 21:01:43

Cupcake, how about keeping her occupied in the mornings with an activity like swimming/play group/nct so that she keeps going and then has a nap after?

Cupcakemummy85 Mon 01-Oct-12 21:13:14

I honestly really tried this morning and I thought we were close to keeping her up but she just couldn't stay awake. I've had really bad experiences with baby groups (unfriendly mothers and children) so I haven't been back. It was so bad a few weeks ago and I came home crying my dh always talks me out of going to try another one. I'm going to try again tomorrow. If the weather can just behave and not rain I could take her to the park.

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 01-Oct-12 21:17:09

Sorry to hear that you haven't found any groups you like. If the weathers crap how about swimming or soft play or meeting up with a friend?

Cupcakemummy85 Mon 01-Oct-12 21:27:24

U r absolutely right. It's worth a go defintely. Thanks. My local garden Ctre has a soft play area and it should b free of older children in the morning so we will give it a go!

Woodlands Tue 02-Oct-12 08:50:33

I remember that stage being tricky. I suddenly realised that the one nap of the day didn't have to be after lunch - so for a while we had a routine of snack at 10.30 or so, then nap 11-1pm, then a late lunch. It worked really well for a while.

I would suggest going with her pattern of napping 11-12.30, then maybe when she gets tired mid-afternoon getting her to sit quietly and watch a bit of TV/read stories or something. I find a snack also perks my DS up when he gets sleepy. Then put her to bed as early as you can, say 6.30/7pm. Over time you'll probably find that the nap gets a bit longer and a bit later, and before long you'll be able to have an early lunch first and then nap say 1-3pm. That's the goal anyway!

pleasethanks Tue 02-Oct-12 14:40:26

I second exactly what woodlands says. In fact I think she may have given me some similar helpful advice when my DD was looking like she was dropping to one nap (she was about 12 months). I started putting her down about 1030, but made sure we did something quite exciting after breakfast to keep her occupied, but also tire her IYKWIM. She would then sleep for a couple of hours or so. I would take her out for a walk in the buggy or in the car around 330 to offer her the chance to have a wee 15 min cat nap for a while, as she adjusted. But over time the nap just got a bit later and later and now at 2 years old she goes down for her nap about 1ish.

Good luck. It was actually relatively painless once I accepted she was moving to one nap and she adjusted very quickly.

Woodlands Tue 02-Oct-12 18:47:27

Me? Helpful nap advice? I'm the one who BFed my DS to sleep for his nap until about 21 months and ever since then only pushchair (round the park, rough ground, no distractions) or car will work to get him off to sleep. Maybe I should take my own advice. Mind you I think my DS will drop his nap altogether before long.

pleasethanks Tue 02-Oct-12 19:43:16

Woodlands, I am sure you gave me advice about how to get DD transitioned over to one nap!

Sprite21 Tue 02-Oct-12 19:57:07

Sounds like my DD in that she just doesn't like to nap. Too many exciting things going on. She is down to one nap a day now at 12 months and it's an hour if I'm lucky. All good suggestions above but I do wonder if the crying is resisting sleep rather than not needing it IYSWIM.

Fairylea Tue 02-Oct-12 20:02:35

Maybe she just doesn't need or want a nap.

My dd now aged 9 never napped during the day from about 7 months. She just didn't need or want to. So I got a play pen and used to let her play in there when I had to do stuff around the house occasionally and she seemed to like it.

Cupcakemummy85 Tue 02-Oct-12 20:30:43

Well tried to give her an early lunch and put her down for a nap at around 1. No crying but she was still really tired in the afternoon and she looked like she really needed to nap. So, tomorrows plan is put her down for a nap at ten and try and put her down at two or three. She clearly needs a nap I think she is resisting sleep like you said sprite21. I'm still learning smile hopefully when my next baby comes I will b a dab hand at this nap stuff lol

Iggly Tue 02-Oct-12 20:32:35


JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 02-Oct-12 21:10:32

Cup, if you are dropping a nap she will be tired for a while but have heart, she will get used to it soon.

Cupcakemummy85 Tue 02-Oct-12 21:14:42

She has napped in the afternoon for a while but he has been so grumpy the whole time. She sleeps if we are in the car in the afternoon or out for a long walk in the pram so I know she definitely wants a nap. I think if I do exactly the same as the morning, milk then nap hopefully she will go down. It's not fair tryin to keep her up and giving her lunch when she is tired. I felt quite bad for that. When I see she is tired I will pop her in bed and if there is only ten mins of protesting I know I'm on to a winner lol

Cupcakemummy85 Tue 02-Oct-12 21:15:54

The beginning is meant to say hasn't napped! smile

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 02-Oct-12 21:43:48

If she naps in he car or pushchair it doesn't mean that she can't go without it or that she needs it every day though. She will probably still nap like this long after she's dropped all her naps.

sedgieloo Tue 02-Oct-12 21:58:08

My suggestion would be to try a really short nap In the morning 2-3 hours after she woke up for the day and then an early lunch and down again. This is a gf thing. And I didn't try her approach overall but found the ideas on nap times at various ages seemed to work. It takes a brave person to wake a sleeping baby after half an hour 40 mins but they are then tired for a proper pm nap that doesn't mess with bedtime. Then cutting out the morning nap as they get a bit older is fairly easy as you just bring forward the pm nap. But saying that I didn't have the crying before sleeping thing unless baby was overtired and I'd missed the window so to speak.

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