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bed time with a four year old - help!!

(2 Posts)
lovemybabes Tue 16-Sep-08 22:49:01

hi there,
have tried so many things with my four year old but still can't get him to go to bed, let alone sleep.
he has a bath, stories, a lights-out cuddle... but then gets up a million times.
i won't manhandle him into bed - he's big and also screams blue murder if i do. but threatening to remove privileges the next day (and carrying through with this) doesn't work. and i can't snuggle with him until he falls asleep because i have dd now 9 months.
i was just getting the hang of his bedtime but then had dd, who also doesn't seem to need to sleep much at all - and now with the two of them, unless dh is home early enough to take one of them, ds is often still awake at ten.
perhaps i got his hopes up by introducing a big bedtime routine (often staying until he fell asleep) before dd, which i now can't sustain... in any case, i need to do something as he's just started school and will get overtired.
short of locking him in his room i am lost for ideas...
any tips much appreciated. it seems such an obvious question, but i can't get my head around bedtime with two children, even though i find it pretty straightforward managing the two of them in the daytime. i love my days with them but can't stand the evening shenanigans and feel guilty that ds isn't getting settled properly.
thanks ladies.

Riaonabroomstick Wed 17-Sep-08 22:28:31

Hi. Reading your post has made me feel a little better as I am going through much the same.

I have 3 DSs (11, 4.5 & 15m). I had got DS2 to go to bed on his own, but he stopped and I have to go with him and lay down until he is asleep most nights (then I end up back ion there with him most nights as he has started having nightmares, but that's another story). DH has been off work with a shoulder injury for over a year now so he is here most nights to hep with DS3 while I sort out DS2, but I don't know how I would cope otherwise. DS1 gets left to his own devices really which I feel awful about.

Does your DS go to school full days or half? I was hoping the increased activity during the day would make things easier at night, and I think we do get to bed earlier, but not easier. IYSWIM.

I suppose there's always sleep techinques, starting with them but moving further away each night etc. It seems to be the most pain-free option in the book I have, but I haven't tried it yetblush, and you would need support from your DH unless your DD stays happily in her cot?

I do sometimes use lavender in his bath, and I think you can rub it into the soles of your feet for sleeplessness, but I don't know if that's appropriate for children.

I'm sorry I have no advice but I hope it helps a bit to know you're not alone.

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