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How to stop children coming into our bed in the night?

(35 Posts)
noisymonkiesmum Thu 15-Sep-11 12:39:07

Feeling very sleep deprived! DS2 (age 2) takes an hour of screaming to go to sleep at night and then wakes by midnight to start again. After settling him for half hour, he repeats an hour later so I end up letting him in our bed just to get some sleep. Meanwhile DD (age 4) gets out of bed and comes up for a cuddle, return her to her bed, settle for half hour and she repeats an hour later. If I leave them to scream, they wake DS1 up so everyone tired and grumpy by morning only to repeat the next night.

I feel this is a vicious circle and everyone is getting more and more tired and more and more grumpy and difficult in the day. Even had DS1 sobbing in playground today not wanting to go to school which is a first. In need of help!

juuule Thu 15-Sep-11 12:46:54

Put you up bed at the side of yours that one or both can get in if they wake up?

We had a downstairs bed-settee for some of the night wakening phases ours went through. One of us would take them downstairs and get in that with them. It passed. Eventually they stopped waking in the night or climbed in with a sibling who was happy to have the company.

Take the 2yo downstairs for an hour until they nod off and you can return to bed without waking the others. This worked for us for a while.

It's difficult if people/children aren't getting enough sleep and whatever works at the time is good. It's just finding it that can be tricky. And remember "it's a phase, and it will pass".

confusedperson Fri 16-Sep-11 21:37:50

I used Jo Frost's strategy for my DS (now 3.5yo) and it worked very well.
When he comes to your bed for the first time, you take him back, give a cuddle, say "It's sleep time" and leave the room. When he comes for the second time, you take him back, say "It's bed time" but do not cuddle. When he comes for the third time and any further times, you just take him back with saying NOTHING and no cuddle. Very important not to give into talking.
It worked for us after about 3-4 nights and we never looked back.

webwiz Fri 16-Sep-11 22:59:32

We just bought a bigger bed!

ll31 Sat 17-Sep-11 19:22:05

I'm in the let them sleep in your bed camp to be honest - on the basis that its easier and provides less disturbance for everyone... they will stop themselves at one stage

TheHouseofMirth Sat 17-Sep-11 21:14:28

I agree with II31 and webwiz. DS1 who is now 6 co-slept with us full-time until he was 4 when he asked to go in his own bed and now we only see him in the night if he's ill so no rods for our backs here!

icapturethecastle Sat 17-Sep-11 21:32:14

I think a bigger bed may be the only answer for me!

emkana Sat 17-Sep-11 21:36:11

Bigger bed definitely. They stop coming when they're ready.

LynetteScavo Sat 17-Sep-11 21:37:27

I did as as confusedperson suggests. It took 6 bloody weeks. It wasfecking tiring, and DH and I nearly divorced, but it worked eventually.

You either do this, or get a bigger bed, or climb into theirs when they get into

The only reason I wanted DS to sleep all night in his own bed was because he used to poke me in the eye when I was asleep. Not funny.

suebfg Sat 17-Sep-11 21:37:27

When we moved house, it nipped it in the bud! Appreciate that may be a bit drastic.

Tbh, I loved having DS in the bed - hubbie wasn't as keen!

hatebeingmummy Sat 17-Sep-11 21:39:02

Sames as confused worked for me in 2 nights when DD was 4. She does still come in from time to time but knows she can't stay now. I think sometimes she just wants reassurance that I'm there rather than to actually snuggle in.

seeker Sat 17-Sep-11 21:43:15

Don't. Let them come into bed with you- they'll be off ton university before you know it and you'll miss them.

InmaculadaConcepcion Sun 18-Sep-11 13:32:31

It depends on whether you can sleep okay with them in your bed or not. Personally, I'm a light sleeper and find it very difficult to get any decent kip if DD is in bed with us, as much as I enjoy cuddling up with her. So we went down the sleep training route too and actually, it hasn't been too bad. Result is the whole family - including DD - is in a better mood and more inclined to spend quality time with each other during the day rather than grousing, grumping and crying.

Good luck.

MysteryToyBlockedTheToilet Sun 18-Sep-11 15:48:53

Can you sleep with them in the bed? I was in the same cycle as you a few months ago and in the end I put ds to bed then when I went to bed I moved him into mine and had no wake ups and we both got a full nights sleep, it was amazing. In fact I miss it as he sleeps in his cot again now so was just a phase.

The way I see it is if it saves your sanity. Do it!!

GnomeDePlume Sun 18-Sep-11 17:54:00

Ours all came into our bed for a while when they were small but they are now 16, 13 and 11 so it doesnt happen any more!

Our decision was that we would rather that they slept somewhere than nowhere.

We allowed them to come into our bed but once they were around the 4 age (start of school for us) we would say 'you can come into our bed but you will be too tired for [insert random thing child likes doing]'. This was repeated the following day 'no you cant do [random thing] because you came into our bed last night so are too tired'. This allowed them to take control a bit and make the decision. They soon decided they would rather stay in their own beds.

Funnily enough we got a bigger bed and they stopped coming in!

noisymonkiesmum Mon 19-Sep-11 13:26:06

Some great help, thanks guys, I like the "its just a phase" approach and "soon you will miss them doing it"! So far we've made it until 5.30am for the last 2 nights so just morning cuddles which is totally fine. I can sleep with them, but they tend to have their heads on me and kick DH so he's not so appreciative!

Runoutofideas Mon 19-Sep-11 13:33:20

My dd2 was a rubbish sleeper, always wandering about in the night wanting company. It finally stopped when we put both children in the same bed as each other. (They were 5 and 3 I think) Now they top and tail in a single bed and very rarely get up in the night. Might be worth a go....

Flowerista Mon 19-Sep-11 13:38:30

Tried the Jo F method. Result 3 totally sleep deprived people unable to raise their spoons to eat breakfast let alone tackle the day. Ds comes in with me, DH toddles off to the very comfy spare room. It's not ideal, and it's been a year but we simply cannot function in this house without sleep.

SecretSquirrels Mon 19-Sep-11 15:43:29

What Seeker said.
We had years of musical beds. Both DSs had double beds so you could get in with them or let them in your bed. That way everyone gets sleep.
I really miss it now they are too grown up for mum's bed.

hatebeingmummy Tue 20-Sep-11 08:20:08

In bed is the onlt time my partner and I aren't mum and dad so it would be out of the question to have them in with us.
What about nookie?

RoundOrangeHead Tue 20-Sep-11 08:24:49

musical beds here too, they'll soon be grown-up

GnomeDePlume Tue 20-Sep-11 08:54:36

Hatebeingmummy - there was a time when our sofa saw more action than the bed!

Now they are older we have a bolt on our door to stop them barging in demanding breakfast/towels/refereeing when we are busy.

seeker Tue 20-Sep-11 09:36:28

Who said nookie has to take place in bed?

Actually, I think our bed is so associated with children and biscuits and breast feeding and breakfast and consoling nightmares and cats and cuddling and late night/early morning chats and confidences and giggles and pretending to be a family of hibernating polar bears and so on that it feels a bit strange having sex in it!

Davsmum Tue 20-Sep-11 09:42:35

It would be interesting to know what husbands/partners thoughts were on having children sleeping in their beds ?
My friend has all her 3 young children in their bed most nights and refuses to work with her husband to sort it out because she doesn't like the children to be upset. He has confided in my partner that he is at the end of his tether with it and apart from it affecting his sleep quality it is also affecting his marriage. He doesn't see why he should have to leave his own bed when they could be firmer with the kiddies to sleep in their own bed.

seeker Tue 20-Sep-11 09:45:56

You're assuming that a. This hasn't been discussed- surely all good parents discuss their parenting decisions. And b. that dads don't enjoy a snuggle with their children as well. Which is actually a bit insulting to both mothers and fathers!

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