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Extreme Anxiety over Toddlers Naps(15 Posts)
For the last week, I've been trying to get my 2 year old to nap in her cot instead of the car, as I have another baby due in May.
My little one's sleep and naps are the main thing which set off my pnd and have done since she was born. The crying involved in changing her nap routine really gets to me and make me angry, as I feel like a failure. I've been doing so well lately, but today's nap wasn't happening. I tried for too long and in the end, she cried for so long, I got angry, put her down and had to leave the room and hit the wall several times, which made her more upset. I couldn't help it though. I had to get the frustration out.
I'd like to make it clear that I would never hurt my daughter. The nap thing really gets to me though. How am I going to make it happen and keep calm? What is wrong with me, that other people can do this so easily and I can't??
You're doing the best you can. What help have you had with your PND up to now? Do you have supportive friends/family?
No words of advice I'm afraid, only to tell you that I so so so so so can relate.
Naps have been the bane of my existence since DD was born, she is now 1. I stress every single day about naps, have cried, screamed into pillows, had raging arguments with dh, all because of naps. They are either too short, take to long to achieve, involve a ridiculous amount of crying...they are rarely relaxing by any stretch of the imagination.
I have ds arriving in a few weeks and guess what...I'm already stressed at the idea of his naps. The thought of pacing the floor with him in a sling like I did with DD, only to achieve a crap 30 minute nap sends a chill down my spine.
I'm sorry your in the same situation, it really does suck!
What happens if she doesn't have a nap? My 18mo hates naps, it involves screaming and sweating and struggling. So I gave up. She's a bit cranky sometimes in the afternoon but I put her to bed at 6:30 and she sleeps beautifully all night.
What is wrong with me, that other people can do this so easily and I can't
They/we can't either, it's just not something that's easy to stop into conversation when you've spent an afternoon lying on the bedroom floor biting on a pillow, stood outside on the landing banging your head on the wall, torn some of your hair out, or exhausted yourself to the point of hallucination walking mile after mile with LO in the pram or pushchair desperately trying to get them to nap.
These are all examples from me, my SIL, my aunt, colleagues... You're doing a great job. There's no magic answer but if you keep trying you will get there.
I have been like this on occasion with DS (just turned 3). It's usually when he's fighting a nap transition - when he dropped from two naps to one and then again when he decided he didn't need to nap at all. I'd be screaming 'go to sleep go to sleep' into a cushion in the sitting room while he wailed in his cot. I wanted him to nap because I needed the break myself, really. Once I decided to cut the nap altogether and just stop trying to put him down, I actually felt better (eventually, once I'd acclimatised to no rest for me!). He does still nap at times, say in the car after a soft play session, or on long journeys. Now though I prefer him not to sleep as he's always terrible at bedtime. If he's had a very busy week, he sometimes drifts off sitting on my knee watching CBeebies after lunch, and I cuddle him and 'rest my eyes' too. I don't sleep properly, but it is a break.
Can you try dropping the nap and just having a cuddle on the sofa reading stories or watching tv? It'll still be relaxing for both of you and sometimes she'll probably fall asleep.
Also, very very few people have it all sorted! Everyone is struggling over naps or tantrums or food or something. Some people just don't let on. You're not a bad mummy - if you were, you wouldn't care about your child's nap schedule at all.
And yes, DS dropped his afternoon nap when he was about 2.5 - had some downtime watching cartoons or being read to and possibly got put to bed a bit early if he'd turned into a little git by early evening but he simply didn't need a nap and 11-12 hours sleep overnight.
My DS dropped his nap when he was 23 months - I was devastated and I remember posting on here as I couldn't imagine how I'd cope.
Do you think your LO definitely needs a nap?
I really feel for you. I am the same with my son sometimes who is 8 months. Of all the things that are so difficult about being a parent to a baby the NAP thing is sooooooo stressful to me. Will it happen, how long for, will he then be whingey all day. Even now when I hear him suddenly roaring himself awake after 25 sodding minutes my hearts starts pounding and I get really anxious! I can't wait until they are past this age. And I totally agree it's as much for me to have a break than anything else.
It’s really hard work. I never bothered with cot naps - I would rather take him for a walk in the buggy. I think though that advice about nap time is unlikely to help your PND and anxiety. The most important thing you can do is have that treated properly. The rest will follow - whether or not the toddler manages to nap in the cot. Look after yourself.
You are not doing anything wrong and are certainly not alone, most mum's I know main gripe is children not sleeping.
My DS dropped his daytime nap at 2 unless we went out in the car. I too was expecting another baby and worried how I would cope, his nap time was also my little break. I ended up letting him watch tv for an hour or so (Mickey mouse club house, gahhh!) So I could have a brew and relax. It also meant he went to bed at 7 with no fuss so I reclaimed my evening. Hope things settle soon for you x
I find naptime stressful too so I gave up. If he sleeps in the pram, fine. If not, then he might be badly behaved in the evening because he’s tired but we’ll just watch tv and go to bed early.
I hear you. I have an 8 week old and I spend the vast majority of my time and precious little energy thinking about goddamn naps
Thank you all so much for taking the time to reply. I have had councilling for my pnd (through NHS and privately), but I have had to stop as the cost was getting too much. I recognise that it gets worse when my current pregnancy makes my hormones go mad for a while. I'm going to take a step back and maybe stop trying so hard. I don't have to be 'perfect' all the time. It's exhausting, trying so hard.
If naps happen, they happen.
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