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desperately need advice on getting dd to sleep!

(19 Posts)
labebete Tue 05-Aug-08 20:37:10

She's 14 months old and she used to go off nicely but the bigger she gets the more she fights sleep. I often spend 2 hours getting her down, sometimes more. She stands up, she yells, she ends up making herself sick she's in such a state. She sometimes goes to sleep with my hand on her tummy but as soon as I move it she wakes up. Similarly in my arms, as soon as I put her down she wakes and starts screaming.

I don't know what to do and it's making things v tought for ds1 (3yrs) too. Not the first time I've posted on this but pleeeeease any help appreciated!

labebete Tue 05-Aug-08 20:37:33

i mean tough

savoycabbage Tue 05-Aug-08 20:43:04

I have got one of these


It is truly awful to look at I think and projects awful bears on the ceiling but my dd loves it. It has a couple of different time settings and by the time it stops they are mesmerised to sleep.

It can stand on the floor so you can stop them pressing the buttons themselves.

Shoegazer Tue 05-Aug-08 20:48:52

Are you staying in the room whilst she is doing this? Not a criticism and not suggesting you leave her to cry, but my own terrible sleeper actually reached a point where it made her more distressed to have me in the room with her than it did for me to leave her to potter in her bed to fall asleep. I also found I was very fixated on her being asleep rather than her being in bed and found that I couldn't relax unless she was asleep, once I accepted that once she was in bed and being quiet looking at toys or books it didin't actually matter what time she fell asleep. I was making her more stressed trying to make her fall asleep IYSWIM.

labebete Tue 05-Aug-08 20:53:13

we leave the room and go back again (with ds it's the only way most of the time - can't stay with her!)

she never potters in her bed, I'm afraid - just screams if left alone!

bubblagirl Tue 05-Aug-08 20:58:23

we had sleep therapist who said pop them down say ssshhh night time then sit with your back to them only every now and then saying sshhh sleep time no other form of talking

just sit with your back to her and ignore just knowing your there normally helps my ds used to take hours to get off and by doing this after 2 nights was down to 5 mins

read short story first then do it as story should start tiring her anyway then move away slightly and sit either with back to her or facing her with head down by the wall or where her bed is situated so she can see you but not having eye contact hope it works was a godsend to me and has helped few others on here also

blueshoes Tue 05-Aug-08 21:06:27

labebete, I have a similar child. My solution is co-sleeping - which is gentle and lovely. That way, your dd does not have to cry. Will you consider that?

allergictohousework Tue 05-Aug-08 21:09:34

posted this yesterday on similar subject:

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.

onelittlelion Tue 05-Aug-08 21:10:13

We also cosleep. I know for some people it's not ideal. Ds waits til I go to bed so I think it would be harder if I had returned to work etc. It does work for us tho. My friend who coslept with her dd has found it an easy transition for her dd to go into her own bed in same room and aims to have her in own room this yr when she is 3. I hope I have it as easy with ds!

blueshoes Tue 05-Aug-08 21:26:23

onelittlelion, I find that working and co-sleeping are a wonderful combination. It allows me to catch up on cuddle time.

What you want to do is work to a situation whereby you lie next to ds to get him to sleep (if necessary) and then try to sneak off for some adult time, until it is your bedtime.

onelittlelion Tue 05-Aug-08 21:35:02

Thanks blueshoes I agree is lovely cuddletime I used to do just that but ds seems to have slowly managed to stay up later and later so he is going to bed 11ish and up again about 9. He is just 2. He still has 1-1.30 hr hr sleep in the day. I think I need to get him up earlier and be more routined with daytime sleep and it will shift back naturally again? I love co-sleeping and plan to do when have another baby too. It's good to know it will work when return to work as will have to return earlier if have another baby than I have with ds.

blueshoes Tue 05-Aug-08 22:06:39

onelittlelion, my ds is also 2 and has the same sleep pattern as your ds ie 10 hour sleep at night (in his case from 8 pm to about 6 - 6:30 am) and then 1 to 1.5 hour sleep after lunch. I am back at work and ds attends ft nursery.

Once you are back at work, assuming you don't have in-house care like a nanny, you will have to wake him up to get dressed and out of the house before you go to work. So he will naturally have an earlier waking time. His bedtime will be earlier as a result, hth smile.

onelittlelion Tue 05-Aug-08 22:11:59

I hope to go back part time in Sept and ds will do part time nursery and some time with my mum and mil so was hoping would work like that! Thanks for the reassurance

labebete Wed 06-Aug-08 19:07:57

thanks for all these tips

we kind of semi co-slept until I stopped bfing around 10 months, but it wouldn't work now, she's not awake and having fun in the evening, she's shattered and grumpy and needs to sleep and I can't go to sleep at 8pm - esp with ds around!

I have tried controlled crying but it really doesn't work for us, she just ends up making herself sick. I go in and calm her and the second I leave she screams again and so it goes on until she's so upset I have to cuddle her because she's frantic. Often she can't even calm down in my arms, and ends up being sick - it's really distressing for all of us.

labebete Sun 10-Aug-08 21:17:02

sorry sounding ungrateful/ negative - kept posting in the middle of trying to get her down, when I'd stepped out of the room.

she's still finding it impossible to go to sleep without a huge fight, I've just spent about 45 mins with her crying in bed, in my arms etc etc. dh is in there now and it's all quiet.

anyone know how I find a sleep therapist?!

ten10 Sun 10-Aug-08 21:36:07

It may be that she is going through a clingy period and feels terrified by you leaving her,

Have you tried just pottering around in the bedroom while she is in the cot, so that you are there and she can see you but you are ignoring her.
So maybe folding her clothes and putting them away or something similar.

Do you have a routine which includes a piece of music so that when you leave the room it is not silent.

Is she teething as when my DS's molars came through he was hysterical at bedtime and would not settle even though he had been in a brilliant bedtime routine previously. They took weeks to actually cut the gum.

katyamum Sun 10-Aug-08 21:45:41

I posted earlier this evening about terrible sleepers, so I'm not one to talk. But I spent a lot of money at a well-known sleep clinic, and they gave excellent advice for bed-time settling. Here is the abbreviated version: choose the time you want your dd to go to sleep (let's say 7.30pm). Bath to bed should take no more than 30 minutes, 45 mins tops. So at 7pm you put her into nice warm bath for 5 mins. This allows her core temperature to ?drop. Calm, lights low, get out of bath and snuggled in warm towel into warm PJs and into bedroom, low lights, story, cuddle, into bed by 7.30pm lights out. They told me sleep should come within 10 mins after this routine. If necessary, sit nearby on a chair or cushion. Move the cushion every 3rd nigth a bit further away. It really worked for me. Make sure dd has a regular nap around 1pm and no later than 3pm. The key was to catch the right window because the warm bath combination really helps to bring on sleep. Good luck.

katyamum Sun 10-Aug-08 21:48:18

Millpond were the sleep clinic I used. Really sensitive, practical advice. not touchy-feely, just sound advice and also really tailored to you, not prescriptive, not bossy. Can't recommend them highly enough. Helped me through dark times. Google them (I don't know how to add a link, sorry)

blueshoes Mon 11-Aug-08 07:13:30

katyamum: "[The sleep clinin] told me sleep should come within 10 mins after this routine."

What if it doesn't?

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