15 month old hysterical at bedtime(6 Posts)
15 month old DD has been crying hysterically every time I put her down in her cot. She stops when I pick her up but starts again and clings to me when I try to put her down. We have been doing this since 7pm tonight and she is still going. Doesnt seem to let up at all, just gets more and more worked up. She as been going for 10 mins now & I know she is stood up at the end of her cot. What do I do?
Is this just tonight or every night? If every night, try controlled crying? my ds is 15 months old and I have done this with him and it worked. sounds cruel but you can do it in tiny increments, whatever you can stand. decide how long you are going to let her cry for in the first instance, anything from 2 mins to 10 mins. Then go in, soothe until she is quiet then put her down say goodnight / lie down / sleep time / whatever... then walk out and leave her. if she starts crying you take the original time you left and add a minute / 2 mins / 5 mins, whatever you can stand and you think she can stand without getting hysterical. Repeat the soothing operation, leave room and add the same amount of time on again. so if you had 5 mins of crying originally, then it would be 5+2 first time, 5+2+2 the next etc. It may take well over an hour the first time you try it so be prepared to stick with it. the next night you should find she cries for less time (do the same controlled crying method). if you give in she will learn that crying means she doesn't have to go to sleep. If she gets really hysterical when you leave you make the intervals v short, eg 30 seconds at a time.
NB NONE of the above applies if she is unwell, teething, thirsty, has a temp etc, when imho you would just be being mean to leave her.
I second what onwardandupward suggests -
"Hold her while she goes to sleep? "
DD went through a phase of this. We cuddled her and rocked her until she dropped off the first night, then until she was really sleepy the next, then very gradually a bit less, and a bit less, and would talk to her about going to bed. It took a while, but was pleasant, peaceful and stress-free. I think they go through little phases where they get more anxious and need reassurance. We didn't see it as "giving in", I have to say, and she actively asks to go to bed after stories now.
My DD2 (14 months) has been doing same thing for last couple of months - not every night but most nights. As she is a big lump I find it difficult to rock/carry her to sleep and I do worry also that I might end up rocking her to sleep when she's 3 or so... I didnt want to do control crying however so at bedtime after a cuddle, I lie her down on her front in her cot(and keep lying her down if necessary) and pat her bottom or back. Once she is settled but not asleep she is happy for me to move away from the cot and potter in the room - I use this time to tidy up washing/drying etc and then if she is not looking I sneak out without treading on the squeaky floorboards or breathing.
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