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three year old sleep

(18 Posts)
littleraysofsunshine Fri 20-Nov-15 07:09:33

She has always been on and off good sleep. But she was a very sleepy kid at one point, then it just all went upside down.

On a bad night/ week:

She will refuse bed (despite us making it calm, and cosy.)

She will scream uncontrollably.

She will keep the other two awake. (5&22mth)

She will then either not stop being irrationally despite us trying to help.

We then try bribes like well granny won't let you do sleepovers if you do this, or no park tomorrow etc - I'm sick of trying this.

We have always tried gentle parenting and attached methods we've done a mixture of co sleeping in the past until it's not longer been helping, which hasn't been for ages with the eldest two, we try to respect their feelings, with empathy. But this hardly works. We end up all getting upset stressed and raised voices. No matter how nice and calm we are, it doesn't work. Then neither does shouting and then I feel extreme guilt.

But on nights like this when she wakes also in the middle of the night it's hard to stay calm when so tired and it's the no I want mummy, no I want daddy, my toe itches, my leg hurts saga.

We're expecting number four as well!

I must add. It's not always been like this or is like this. But it's a lot lately.

She did two weeks of fantastic sleep. But last night wasnt. Refused bed and has been awake since 4am.

And on events when she does this - she completely forgets about it and wonders why I'm so sleepy and moody shock

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 22-Nov-15 22:03:54

It can be really hard can't it, especially if you have others and you are pg.
Could you give us a bit more information, like does she play outside every day? Does she get anytime alone with you in the day? What time is her bedtime and does she still have a nap?

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 22-Nov-15 22:06:13

Forgot to mention, have a look at this book.

littleraysofsunshine Mon 23-Nov-15 20:02:59

She does nursery 9-12 everyday. This started in sept. But has always been to. Playgroup setting either with me or in her own from one morning a week.

She gets playtime, and alone time with me. I do have afternoons where I need to get work done as j work from home. The kind of stuff that can't wait to the evening. But majority I am with her 12-2 when baby sleeps.

She hasn't napped in the day for a while just because this doesn't help matters

littleraysofsunshine Mon 23-Nov-15 20:03:49

After three good nights were back to horrible sleep./ going to bed.

Screaming crying and just making it difficult. Everyone is awake still. And just asks for things, makes excuses no matter how we set boundaries or be gentle. It's crazy

littleraysofsunshine Mon 23-Nov-15 20:05:11

Thanks. Tried that book but no joy really. I find books don't really help us. As it's not always a consistent problem. It's like a pattern of weeks and months like a yo yo that can be good or hard

Twistedheartache Mon 23-Nov-15 20:14:18

Have you tried an audiobook / music in her room?
I had a bad sleeper first time round, was still holding her hand to get her to sleep til just past 3rd birthday.
I got a better bedtimes sticker chart in WH Smith which helped & to give you hope now at 4.9 she's brilliant at going to bed and has been for at least a year.
Of course she still has her moments when overtired/grumpy. She'll always be an extreme child both positive & negative but it does get better

littleraysofsunshine Mon 23-Nov-15 20:32:04

It's not all the time, overtiredness, over stimulation can trigger this but even when we try to keep it under control there will be moments where she will just switch.

They have fairy lights on to go to bed, makes the room dim and a relaxed zone, we read little stories sometimes or simply cuddles and kisses to the transition of bed time.

Our first has been a great sleeper since one years old, she's 5 now and has to share so sometimes this is hard.

Our 1.5yo goes in his room but when she's being loud nobody can get to sleep and daddy and I are left divided into each room, then alternating when it gets a bit much etc.

I get tired of using so many ways of incentive and bribery, we just try to get them to understand that going to bed is lovely, a chance to get energy for the next day etc. Time to rest.

She went through the stage of asking to go to bed! But since the age of three it's been. But ropey and especially since the summer holidays ended I would say when nursery became more hours maybe? The weekdays are so fast paced with six school runs a day maybe it's too much?

The thing I find hard is that when she gets in the state, it's like a point of no return. Tonight I calmed her with cuddles which helped but then any thing will set it off again, like being too "itchy", or stuffy nose (from crying) etc. No amount of cuddles, talking will help once she's past it. and I hate the evening ending like that. We don't leave her to cry, never have, but at the same time, if us trying to help doesn't help what is there!

minipie Mon 23-Nov-15 20:51:58

Sounds like my DD (just 3) when she's too tired.

I have found that a short nap helps - not every day, and not more than about 20/30 minutes. Just seems to mean she is a bit less "wired" at bedtime. Does your DD fall asleep in the car?

Twistedheartache Mon 23-Nov-15 21:36:12

Can you settle her down in your room when she gets herself in a tizz - my dd still at nearly 5 has moments where there is no reasoning with her - and then move her to her own bed later? Or even put baby & 5 yo together for a while?

littleraysofsunshine Thu 26-Nov-15 20:42:46

We was thinking his but she was getting really upset about it.

When she seems less wired it's fine. A little reasoning and she's fine. I do find it comes an goes, so she had two weeks good, two awful nights, good night, iffy night, good night today. Obviously health may come into things if she's feeling run down, but over tiredness / over stimulation I think does it. But it's managing and makin the differences to help which we struggle with.

If I let her she would love a nap everyday BUT she doesn't do cat naps. She will want like 2-3 hours and be super moody and super hyper for bed

minipie Fri 27-Nov-15 14:24:11

when you say she doesn't do catnaps what do you mean? What happens if you wake her after say 25 mins? If it's that she is very grumpy/tantrummy then you might be able to sort that... I was finding that DD was awful after naps but allowing her to watch a short tv programme straight after waking seems to have fixed that.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 28-Nov-15 13:43:29

I was going to suggest one or two sleep cycles for her nap, say 45 mins or an hour and a half. Agree that a drink and snack and a short to program on waking may fix any moodiness. She does sound overtired.

littleraysofsunshine Mon 07-Dec-15 02:28:14

She's getting over being ill but started again. She'll wake up and say she never gave one of us a kiss. Then I'll leave the room and she'll say about the other one.. Or that she needs a week when we know she can hold it. And if we don't do it she'll just scream/cry.

Hence losing patience to which I've just done and told her off by shouting. Unfair I know and now I'm sat on the floor while everyone is asleep crying with guilt.

Broken sleep is the worst especially when pregnant too. No excuse and I feel awful.

littleraysofsunshine Tue 15-Dec-15 03:37:49

Every single night she is waking / or half waking at 3/3:30. Same time phase every time. Now it could be for a tissue, she has a cold nose, she's cold, I tuck her in, she's hot, she didn't give daddy a kiss (she did) and will then start crying until she gets as she's asking. And the list goes on.
We are so tired

minipie Tue 15-Dec-15 11:26:46

If it's the same time every night could it be something waking her? Noisy heating, neighbour's washing machine etc?

Another suggestion is a star chart - one star for going to bed nicely with no arguments and delaying, one star for sleeping all night and not shouting out. If she gets both stars then she can have a small choc after lunch the next day. We've been doing this with DD (age 3.2) and it works pretty well except when she is genuinely ill.

However a star chart relies on her being "rational" iyswim and not in an overtired tizz. Still think it would be worth engineering some naps if you can...

littleraysofsunshine Tue 15-Dec-15 20:36:29

We tried these before. I think sometimes she's asleep doing it. Then other times it's habit now. Like her body clock is just use to it?

We don't have the heating on in the night we'll not recently. Obviously it's a part of her sleep pattern but it's the whole not going back off self soothing etc. She will sometimes just roll over but others she will shout, scream and make any excuse.

When she's been poorly I'm obviously understanding that effects it all. And three is still small, bad dreams etc. But sometimes when it's every night, and were waking up with the one year old (not interrupting her as he's way before her time) my patience wears thin after the sixth time of going in her room which then either leads to saying a bribe like "well grampy said no sleepovers unless you sleep well" but in a sad tone. Or either one of us end up giving in to the tiredness and sleeping at the end of her bed (only last night recently as we were so shattered) there was a time she would expect us to do this all the time but that was a while ago.

littleraysofsunshine Tue 15-Dec-15 20:37:18

It's amazing how her five year old sister doesn't wake at all through it. She has always been a fan sleeper though.

Three year old was, but since around August time, it's been like a roller coaster.

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