2yo will only go to sleep if I hold her hand.(7 Posts)
Until recently, my 2yo was a model sleeper, going to bed happily for both naps & night time and settling herself to sleep after a story without any fuss. About 5 weeks ago this all changed and she now will only fall asleep if I sit and hold her hand. She wakes frequently at night now too.
Has anyone else experienced something like this? Any thoughts as to how to return her to happy sleep gratefully received.
When my dd was this age and 'clingy', I used to make little excuses to go off and do other things eg I'm just going to put this away will be back in a a moment, so that she leaving the room was not a big deal.
Also if you can tray and find a fave cuddly toy for her to take to bed and make up a nice ritual eg lets tuck 'bunny' in, read him a story kiss him night night etc.
My 2 year old started to refuse to go to bed (screaming for hours) and he would get up every hour screaming. It was a total nightmare! We have a 5 month old so I was unable to tackle it myself but my husband did gradual retreat from the bedroom and started to sleep on his bedroom floor during the night to stop him getting up screaming following that he was on the landing on an air bed (he's says he's living the dream). Along with a star chart (we stuck the stars on with cello tape which really appealed to my DS) things improved. We now leave the room without him screaming and getting up and my husband or I wait in our bedroom until he's sleep, often we tell him we are just popping downstairs and he accepts that and goes to sleep. I must admit my husband is still on the landing but we are fazing that out.
All in all it was a long tedious process but we learned very quickly to stay calm and not to expect a solution over night but once we saw progress it was worth it.
I'm not sure what changed as he was always a brilliant sleeper. I think nightmares played a part as well as a bout of threadworm.
I hope this helps. Sorry if it's a bit of a waffle!! Good luck.
My 2yo is also going through a bit of this at the moment. We've retreated from the handholding. Currently I sit on the floor, and am trying to move further away each night and making excuses to "pop out" of the room.
This is my DC2. DC1 went through a phase of it too. It will pass.
Thank you everyone! Lots of elements of what each of you has said ring true so I guess I'll carry on as we are, which is really trying to make sure that bedtime isn't something distressing for her (or us!) and hold her hand until she doesn't need the reassurance anymore.
We've just (last month or so) hit a similar situation with DD who is 2.1. She used to be a pretty good sleeper and would self settle. But we now have to sit in the room until she's asleep and she will usually wake at least once and need someone to stay in the room then.
It's a phase, their imaginations take a massive leap, and they can also hit another bout of separation anxiety around 2 as well. It will (hopefully, she says with fingers and toes crossed) pass in time.
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