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Help with our 7 year old son with getting to sleep - almost phobic about bed

(6 Posts)
aznerak Mon 24-Aug-09 21:26:25

Hi there

I wasn't sure where to post this so please bear with me!

Our DS is 7.5yrs. He has always been a light sleeper and wakes as soon as anyone else gets up in the house. If he has a late night, he won't sleep in and gradually, builds up a bit of a sleep deficit. Eventually, he gets into a total state and even ends up being sick over this.

However, more recently it has got worse.

For example, last week, he was in a strict routine and was in bed by 8pm every night and woke at 7am every morning. However on Saturday he woke at 6am and was in bed late on Saturday (9pm) and was up before 6am on Sunday.

By Sunday evening, he gets himself in such a state at bed time, he makes himself believe he will be sick, he cries, says he's ill and gets totally uncontrollable.

Anyone had any experiences like this? Any ideas what we can do? He is almost becoming phobic about going to bed. He puts himself under such pressure saying he HAS to go to sleep he then gets ridiculously worked up and this is happening more and more - it is going on again tonight.

Any ideas how we can encourage him to go to bed, calmly, relax and go to sleep and then if he wakes early, go back to sleep?

How can I teach him how to "go back to sleep"?

Any help gratefully received. We are at the end of our tether as this is now causing him extensive anxiety

Thank you!

PixieOnaLeaf Tue 25-Aug-09 09:43:59

Message withdrawn

aznerak Tue 25-Aug-09 10:24:08

Thanks Pixie, its so weird, it like he's having panic attacks about going to bed and its not like we use his room as somewhere he is ever punished. sad

He is such a good boy generally, doesn't get told off much so its so horrid as this seems so out of character.

I just want to help him

pushki Tue 25-Aug-09 11:38:01

Just a quick post to recommend this book called What to Do when Your Kid Dreads his Bed: A Kids Guide to overcoming problems with sleep by Dawn Huebner - the link should take you to the Amazon site.

I found it really useful with my son - it's interactive and you read it with him, there are stages you go through - to be honest I can;t remember it all now and haven't got the book to hand - but it did help. We also bought another book by the author about worrying too much as this was part of my son's problem.

Worth having a look at and he's probably at the right age to read them with you.

Good luck!

aznerak Tue 25-Aug-09 12:01:11

Thank you SO much. The book looks fantastic. I have also ordered the worrying too much so fingers crossed. Will keep you posted

DanceswithHoover Wed 26-Aug-09 12:22:46

Not sure if this may help, but it did for my 4 yr old son. He was ok going to sleep, but went through a stage of waking up from nightmares, so I found out about 'Worry Dolls' - I know it sounds weird but they really worked for him! Basically they are tiny little dolls that you tell your worries to b4 going to sleep, then put them under your pillow, and they do the worrying for you! Obviously it's a mind over matter thing, but my little boy used to love telling them what he was afraid of that particular night! The dolls are handmade in villages in Guatemala. Website is Not too expensive either!!

Good luck!

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