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2.5 year old won't go to sleep

(16 Posts)
PupandHat Thu 11-Sep-08 20:46:14

DS2 used to be great as regards bedtime. Now he just keeps getting up and refusing to sleep. DS1 (5) could be asleep an hour before DS2 (2.5). Taking him out of his cot was the start of it but he was climbing out so we had to. We had to put him in a different room from his brother because they kept winding each other up. We have tried tough love, lifting him straight back and not talking, and now we have resorted to my husband sitting outside his room or on his bed for at the every least an hour everynight till he eventually falls asleep. We have gone from having both asleep by 7.30 to 9.30 onwards now.

I have cut out his nap which only slightly helps. Nothing seems to get through. He is three in a couple of months and I thought he would have been over this by now. He doesn't even seem sleepy. This morning he was up at 6.50am and is still awake now at nearly nine. Once he gets to sleep he might just potter into us once in the night and go back fine. I just don't understand why a child can go from being able to get himself to sleep to appearing to not knowing how to get to sleep.

Any ideas. I appreciate alot of peoples children don't go to bed early. I don't mind getting up early but I would love to have an evening with my husband occasionally. We are also expecting number 3 so want to get it sorted.

thisisyesterday Thu 11-Sep-08 20:51:11

I think it's a phase, ds1 did this shortly after we moved him into a bed. started off fine and then began the getting up over and over.

we did rapid return for ages and eventually he just started stayng in bed again. no rhyme or reason though

JRocks Thu 11-Sep-08 20:52:08

Is he getting enough activity during the day? I only ask because here unless DS gets some extreme fresh air running around time, he's still coiled like a spring at bedtime!

annwoo Thu 11-Sep-08 20:54:01

Is he using up enough energy during the day?

Anifrangapani Thu 11-Sep-08 20:55:16

Gaffa tape or Gin grin

PupandHat Thu 11-Sep-08 20:56:02

I guess we were just spoiled with DS1 who went to bed at 7pm from the day he came home from hospital and probably still would if he wasn't aware that DS2 was still awake.

Maybe we need to back right off and keep at the rapid return consistently. This phase just seems to have lasted soooooooooo long there seems no end in sight.

BoysAreLikeDogs Thu 11-Sep-08 20:58:12

counter-intuitive but have you thought about reintroducing daytime naps?

Sleep breeds sleep sometimes,iyswim.

Another vote for plenty of fresh air and running around outside.

Flum Thu 11-Sep-08 20:59:44

Mmmmm my dd2 has started exactly this. Began with 'More milk', 'need potty', 'want books' etc and goes on and on.

She shares room with big sister and is so unfair to dd1 who just hides under covers and tries to ignore her.

We could split them up as we do have other bedrooms but also expecting no 3 and like to have a spare room for guests. I figure me and DH share so should they,

I think it is a phase.

PupandHat Thu 11-Sep-08 21:03:12

Sometimes he does fall asleep in the car and that just makes things worse. But with the wet summer he hasn't been as active as I would have liked (and too much tv). Definetely try that one.

MuffinMclay Thu 11-Sep-08 21:14:59

Ds1 (2.4) is like this if he doesn't get fresh air and exercise in the afternoon (bloomin' difficult in this wet weather).

Agree on the sleep breeding sleep thing too. Ds1 sleeps worse (takes longer to go to sleep, wakes up in the night) if he hasn't napped.

Could you put a stairgate across his door so that he can't get out (and your dh doesn't have to spend the evening sitting there)? He might get bored and fall asleep.

PupandHat Thu 11-Sep-08 21:21:13

I used to always agree about the sleep breeding sleep thing but not working now! Has anyone tried the stairgate across the door? Can they climb over it? Will try anything. Read a childcare book that suggested tying elastic to the door so they can look out but not get out. Have been a bit reluctant to try that one though.

TheGreatScootini Thu 11-Sep-08 21:24:11

Is rapid return when you put them back in bed wordlessly ad finitum till they stay there?My DD1 recently started getting out of bed endlessly (having always previously gone promptly at 7)
I did the above with her.It took 3 days.The first day I was up and down exactly 72 times over a 3 hour period.I was raging by the end of it, but trying not to show itas per advice from that ruddy awful supernanny,(though I did lose about 2lbs from going up and down the stairs)smileDay 2, it took 30 times.Day 3, 4 times and now we are pretty much back to her going to bed OK, although she does now demand DD2's light show thing be on when she goes to bed..but we can live with that smile

We have a gate at the top of the stairs too..

MuffinMclay Thu 11-Sep-08 21:32:44

Yes, we have a stairgate across the door. Did it in desperation as it was taking hours to get ds1 to go to bed. Rapid return didn't work for us at all - he saw it as a hugely funny game (although he was younger - 18months). Ds1 likes it because he can see what we're up to (I tend to potter near his room after he's gone to bed, putting laundry away etc). He can open it or push it over (it is a pressure one), but the novelty of doing so wore off quite quickly.

I couldn't get the elastic/string thig to work. I thing success depends on your door handles and door configurations.

PupandHat Thu 11-Sep-08 21:38:52

That is the problem we have with rapid return too - he just doesn't take it seriously. Anything like that is like a game for him. Admittedly we haven't tried recently so maybe we have to give it another go

cloudydaze Thu 11-Sep-08 21:59:45

We have the same problem with DS1 who is also 2.5 yrs (perhaps it's the age?) he shares a bedroom with DS2 who unfort has his sleep disrupted from it all. We live in a 2 bed apt so unfort they have to share a bedroom.
TheGreatScootini, with the above method you mentioned do you still put them to bed at the same time? Keen to try your method tomorrow night (DS1 has only just gone to sleep sad).

PupandHat Sat 13-Sep-08 19:54:38

Thanks everyone... tried the tiring him out by taking him to woods and beach to run about the last few days. Tonight he was asleep by 7.30!!!! grin Last night 8pm. So obvious yet I couldn't see it!!! thanks again for your help, guys.

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