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Question for those who have/had a toddler and new baby.

(16 Posts)
suiledonn Tue 26-Aug-08 08:45:38

Hi, I'm 29 weeks pregnant on my second. My dd is 27 months old. She still naps during the day but goes to bed quiet late (9-9.30) I am thinking now how I will manage when the new baby arrives. My sister says I should have dd drop her nap now and have her in bed early or I will be too tired to cope with breastfeeding etc. On the other hand I friend of mine says I would be mad to consider dropping nap time as the time will be invaluable during the day. Both these people have been in the situation but have very different advice.
I am hopeless with structure/routine and that was fine with dd but I don think I will need to be more organised to manage with two. Dh will be working two very long days (9am-10pm) as well as 3 normal days when new baby arrives so some days will be very difficult at the start. Any advice/experience to offer me? Thanks

herbietea Tue 26-Aug-08 08:50:59

Message withdrawn

liath Tue 26-Aug-08 08:51:29

dd had dropped her nap whe ds arrived which did make the days a bit of a slog but on the other hand it was a huge help that she went to bed fairly early as ds would cluster feed in the evenings. If it was all getting too much in the day I would put them both in the car and go for s drive until they both nodded off! DH also works long hours and I hired a post-natal doula to come and help out 2 mornings a week which was a godsend. Coping with 2 on my own was quite a slog - luckily ds was a very settled baby.

Thankyouandgoodnight Tue 26-Aug-08 21:31:02

I currently have a 20 month old and a 5 week old baby.

I would say that for me, I would prefer to have the older one in bed early and have some sort of an evening / just one unsettled baby to deal with before the night shift.

You can definitely invoke quiet time in the day by using the TV / loca library (or some other completely enclosed space where you don't have to be chasing the older one all the time).

I have to say - it has been SO much easier than I thought it would be and for me, certainly easier than being pregnant. I would recommend that you get yourself a decent sling - the sort that you can bend over and pick things up off the floor / do baths etc without them falling out and leaving both your hands free.

Thankyouandgoodnight Tue 26-Aug-08 21:31:58

I currently have a 20 month old and a 5 week old baby.

I would say that for me, I would prefer to have the older one in bed early and have some sort of an evening / just one unsettled baby to deal with before the night shift.

You can definitely invoke quiet time in the day by using the TV / loca library (or some other completely enclosed space where you don't have to be chasing the older one all the time).

I have to say - it has been SO much easier than I thought it would be and for me, certainly easier than being pregnant. I would recommend that you get yourself a decent sling - the sort that you can bend over and pick things up off the floor / do baths etc without them falling out and leaving both your hands free.

hellymelly Tue 26-Aug-08 21:38:01

My daughter was 2 and 4 months when second was born,she was at the awful point where if she had a nap she would be up until half ten or eleven and if she didn't she was exhausted and grumpy by five thirty.I tried shorter and shorter naps but in the end the only way was to drop the nap,I found it easier than the really late nights.She gradually got less grouchy and it was nice having time in the day to focus on her when the baby slept.would have been great to all go to sleep together for an hour or two but when is it ever like that!

beforesunrise Tue 26-Aug-08 21:46:40

dd1 was 2y3m when dd2 was born. she was never much of a sleeper, naptimes and bedtimes a battle, and i could never really 'do' a routine when she was a baby. anyway, i personally found that i would just go ballistic if she didnt take her nap! toddlers are hard work, jealous toddlers very hard work, and tantrums can push you over the edge. dealing with it AND a baby for 12 hours uninterrupted would simply be too much for me. i tried to feed dd2 lying down while dd1 slept, so even if we didnt sleep (we did sometimes!) i could at least grab half an hour of horizontal rest.

i am painting a bleak picture, but wasnt so bad really. now i am finding bedtimes quite tough and will priobably start cutting down dd1's nap so she goes to bed a bit earlier...
the other thing i would say is that you can't really MAKE a child drop their nap, unless theyre vaguely ready for it. if your dd still enjoys her naps let her keep them, she probably needs them!

good luck!

JODIEhadababy Tue 26-Aug-08 21:58:44

Hi, I have a 23 month old DS and a 7 week old DS and I must say that I really couldn't survive without the nap! It gives me time to sit down, have some lunch, recharge my batteries, catch up on Mumsnet!! He's a real live wire and he is still in bed between 7.30 and 8, so still have an evening..

I agree with beforesunrise though, if she wants to nap then let her, it would be horrible to have a new born and a tired grouchy toddler!!

Could you possibly move her nap to earlier in the day so she's abit more 'worn out' by the evening? Easier said than done I know wink

Good luck with everything, and I second the comment that it's easier than I thought, and DEFINATLY easier than being pregnent with a toddler (I also couldn't live without my sling)

berolina Tue 26-Aug-08 22:02:58

ds1 was 2.4 when ds2 was born. He had dropped his nap around his 2nd birthday and although I missed the quiet time I was glad he had, as it meant his 9.30-10 (!) bedtime moved forward to 8.30-9. I do sometimes wish he would nap - to this day ds2, 11mo, has no fixed nap times - but I prefer my evenings tbh. But you need to go with the flow and take your cues from your dd. Both nap and no nap have advantages and drawbacks.

BabiesEverywhere Tue 26-Aug-08 22:04:16

I have 2 year old DD and 2 weeks old DS grin

I would go with what your DD needs. No point in keeping or losing the nap or changing bedtime routine, if she reacts badly to it.

Breastfeeding will happen on demand, you can read or play with your DD or pop on the TV.

Newborn babies also sleep a lot, you can have 'DD only time' when the baby sleeps.

I would just go with the flow, much easier in my opinion. grin

JumpingNASWM Tue 26-Aug-08 22:06:36

I can remember lying on the sofa with DS2 on the breast, DS1 lying on the other side of me wathcing Ceebeebies and desperately trying to sleep myself and if the DC slept it was a bonus. I'd say grab whatever naps are going during the day, and then get them to bed as early as you can in the evening and then go to bed yourself. mine are 23 months apart.

Good luck!

cafebistro Tue 26-Aug-08 22:13:34

I had dd when ds was 30 months. He had already dropped his lunchtime nap of his own accord before she was born and I must admit I wondered how I would cope without a rest myself ( with ds i just slept when he did...but of course thats not possible with a toddler to look after!)
The fact is you just cope...luckily ds goes to bed at 7pm and I managed to get dd into a routine of going down at the same time.
I agree with jodiehadababy its easier than being pregnant with a toddler....I dont feel as tired as that even though dd wakes at least once in the night for a feed and ds for a wee!

lulurose Tue 26-Aug-08 22:18:53

Had DD2 when DD1 was 14 months old so dropping DD1s nap wasn't an option. However I would try and get her used to going to bed earlier. You'll really value your evenings when you have 2. When DD1 did drop her nap at 2 ish it was really nice to have a couple of hours with her while DD2 slept.

Good luck

LittlePushka Tue 26-Aug-08 22:45:28

I agree with so many of the comments!

I have two boys with 17monhs between them, youngest is currently 5 mths.

After that barmy six weeks or so whne demand feeding does not really fit into anypattern, I tried to ensure that I was breast feeding at the same time DS1 ate. It confined toddler to high chair because interuptions in brastfeedings are legion!

Also, from about 12 weeks i put both down to bed at the same time (7pm). They sleep in the same room and there has never been any problem.

My tip would be to have lots of new books or colouring in stuff for your eldest for the first few weeks to cover the breastfeeding times...definitely the most difficult thing to organise (though my eldest is much younger than yours!)

Would echo the comments that fairly rigid routine is the key but it MUCH easier than I imagined once the first couple of months pass.

Finally, once the two interact and laugh and giggle with each other you will be fit to burst with joy....truly! Enjoy

naturalblonde Fri 29-Aug-08 22:04:10

I'm 37 wks pg with db2, dd1 is 23months, and I'm so glad so many of you have said it's easier with a newborn and a toddler than being pregnant. Feel so much better now!!

naomi83 Sat 30-Aug-08 20:38:44

really recommend the book healthy child, healthy sleep habits, i bought it off amazon. the guy who wrote it is a doctor and an expert on children and sleep. according to the book your DD should be having an afternoon nap (if you still can get her too) but also going to bed earlier (maybe try for 7.30/8ish?) You would do this by moving her bedtime 10mins earlier each night I reckon, until you got to an earlier time you were happy with. We found when we moved our son's bedtime earlier he actually got up later, and napped better (as the book says, and we didn't belive it either beforehand!) This way you'll get nap time during the day but also a quieter evening, and when he's ready to drop his nap you'll move his bedtime earlier still, till around 6.30/6.45? Well rested DC also nicer siblings, and if you can get the new baby on his routine at 6months or so like we did then you'll have quiet evenings and no more sleep deprivation, which is just too great to even imagine!

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