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15 month old takes 2 hours to get to sleep

(8 Posts)
fallingandlaughing Wed 26-Sep-12 18:42:04

My daughter takes an absolute age to get to sleep. It has been this way since she was about 4 months. She "needs" to be breastfed in total darkness for that time. If I try the no cry delatch shes springs awake. Have been trying t introduce it gradualy for months. I work full time and, much as I prize time with her it is getting wearing. DP is at home with her and she is also hard to get to sleep in day (will only sleep after lengthy walking in pram). I barely have time to mumsnet these days! If we try putting her down early it makes no difference.


fallingandlaughing Wed 26-Sep-12 18:42:54

p.s. we co-sleep for survival and she feeds through the night.

omama Wed 26-Sep-12 22:21:32

what's her daytime routine look like? what time does she wake, when does she nap & how long for, what time do you start getting her ready for bed & what time is she finally asleep?

Are you wanting to change the feeding to sleep thing or do you want to carry on?

fallingandlaughing Fri 28-Sep-12 14:30:12


She wakes 9.30 to 10.

Up, breakfast, play, books. Lunch.

About 2pm DP takes her out in the pram to start getting her down for nap.

Nap in pram 3 til 4 (approx).

Up, wee snack, play. Mummy home. Cuddles and playing.

6.20 to 6.40 In the Night Garden.

6.40 evening meal.

Bath, pyjamas, 3 books. Let the breastfeeding commence.

Asleep.. Well it was almost midnight last night. Usually 10ish. If we are lucky 9.30. And always up several times a night. At which point I try to rock her to sleep. If this works she will usually wake again within 30 mins and keep doing so til I breastfeed.

I do want to wean her at some point/stop feeding to sleep. But I am scared of giving up the only thing that will get her to sleep (aprt from pram).

omama Fri 28-Sep-12 15:05:43

OK I'm not sure you will want to hear this but really, if she is getting up between 9.30-10am in the mornings, then there is no wonder she is never asleep before 9.30-10pm! Expecting her to go to bed between 7-9pm is likely just too early given her wakeup time & that she napped 3-4pm & hence why an earlier bedtime is not working.

I do think eliminating the feeding to sleep & teaching her to become an independent sleeper will help, especially with reducing night wakings, but I think perhaps restructuring her daytime routine so she is properly tired for bedtime would be a good starting point. If, once you have done this, she is still taking forever to settle and waking repeatedly at night you could then tackle the weaning.

I would suggest a more appropriate routine for her age would be something like:

Wake: 7am
Nap: 12.30-2/2.30 (I'd say at this age she should be having around 2hrs day sleep, maybe 1.5hrs but not less)
Bed: 7/7.30pm

or if you are owls & like a lie in you could shift it all 1hr later & do

Wake: 8am
Nap: 1.30-3/3.30
Bed: 8/8.30pm

By shifting her morning wakeup time and her nap earlier, she should be more ready for bed at 7-8pm & so it should take significantly less time to settle her.
What do you think? Would you be willing to wake her up earlier in the mornings in order to achieve this?

If you want to give it a try, I would wake her 15mins earlier every few days, very gradually so she has time to get used to it, rather than shocking her by waking her up at 7am when she's gone to bed at midnight the night before! As you wake her earlier, she will also need her nap moving gradually earlier & same with bedtime.

Rubirosa Fri 28-Sep-12 15:12:43

I think you need to start teaching her to self-settle as well, it's up to you do this - controlled crying where you leave the room, returning every few minutes is one way. Alternatively you can sit by her bed rubbing or patting her back and sshing/soothing her until she falls asleep - if she gets up just gently lay her back down again. Once your DP can get her napping in her bed without movement then you can work on the same at bedtime.

YoullLaughAboutItOneDay Fri 28-Sep-12 21:15:04

So she's going down at 8 and falling asleep around 10? I would agree that you are being unrealistic if you think she will go to sleep at 8 if she isn't waking until 10am. Even the best sleepers will hardly ever do 14 hours at night. She is doing 12, and most babies I know do 11-12 at night (with variable amounts of waking).

DD2 is 15 months and a rubbish sleeper. But she would go down about 8 and settle reasonably easily. She is up around 7 (multiple wakings in-between). She has to fit around DD1, so her nap is more like 1-3, or 1.30-3.30.

Effectively, after a 10am waking, trying to get her to nap at 2 is like me putting DD2 down at 11am. DD1 actually did do this (she would only take a long nap in the morning, never in the afternoon) but most toddlers will want an afternoon nap. That is again probably isn't helping the taking so long to go off.

If you wait a few weeks, the clock change will do an hour of the adjustment for you...

Have you ever tried waiting and putting her down at, say, 9.30. If she settles easier I'd say that is a resounding signal she isn't tired. (not necessarily vice versa as she might be all out whack on her body clock. Some toddlers are night owls, but not many).

fallingandlaughing Wed 03-Oct-12 18:22:06

Thanks everyone.

I guess that makes sense. I get up 6ish anyway for work, so would be happy to have her wake earlier. Just need to get DP on board with this, he uses her as an alarm clock so in a bit of a cycle with it.

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