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DD 2yrs 3mths, won't sleep unless in bed with me

(6 Posts)
maudlucy Sun 02-Feb-14 21:18:31

I know I have made a rod for my own back by letting her get away with this for so long but tbh I quite like co-sleeping, my DH and I tried so long for this baby, eventually IVF worked and we are both now in our mid 40's. Unfortunately my DH has been diagnosed with cancer and our lives have been turned upside down. He starts treatment in 2 weeks and apart from all the worry I have for him, I could really do with DD sleeping in her own bed. Trouble is, when I lie down with her I'm so tired I sleep too, so end up having no time with DH. I have knocked her daytime nap on the head at nursery, and on the days she is home, but she still won't go to bed without me. I have heard that there are experts who can help (for a price) but is there an easier way for me to manage this? Need to get it nailed in a fortnight if possible.

maudlucy Tue 04-Feb-14 12:21:38

is there something wrong with this post only not had any replies. I can see other postings later on similar subject but with younger child. Would really appreciate any advice

JanePurdy Tue 04-Feb-14 12:27:25

Sorry to hear about your DH, I hope he responds well to treatment.

So at bedtime, do you put her in your bed, lie down with her & end up falling asleep too? Does she wake up at night as well? Or are you putting her in her own bed?

Willothewhip Wed 05-Feb-14 20:18:47

I really am so sorry to hear about your DH. That must be terribly stressful and worrying.

I am currently paying one of those experts you mention to help us finish with co-sleeping. My DD is younger than yours (just turned 1) but I'm sure the approach would be the same. There are two key elements: 1) establish a very positive emotional link for your DD with regards to the bed you want her to go into. For us this means lots if play in and around it; and 2) begin to break the habits that have formed around current bedtime expectations and create new associations. For us this means DH settling her to sleep not me.

You need to go gently at the speed she is comfortable with to make a successful transition. Two weeks may be ambitious for a habit that's so well formed. If there is already a stressful atmosphere due to your DH's health worries you may find she needs the extra cuddles co-sleeping protides right now.

Good luck with it and I sincerely hope your DH has successful and rapid treatment.

SnottyNoses1 Wed 05-Feb-14 20:29:46

There are experts, but there are also lots of books (most available on kindle too.) It might be worth reading one of those? So sorry to hear about your husband.

TwoThreeFourSix Fri 07-Feb-14 14:44:24

Sorry to hear about your DH. Your DD may be picking up on your stress and sadness - DS is 2.4 years and really sensitive to my moods.

In fact, that was one of the reasons we're stopping co-sleeping right now because I'm 6 months pregnant and very stressed with the pregnancy/toddler/FT work. Sometimes I lie awake for hours at night...and so does DS!

What we're doing (which, fingers crossed, is actually working) :

DS has a single bed in his room. We bought a lovely Thomas the Tank Engine duvet set (he doesn't actually use duvets or covers of any kind, but loves Thomas!)

I made a poster, with photos, with a clear bedtime routine (milk, brush teeth, night nappy + pyjamas, DS turns light on in his room, 2 books, Mummy turns light out, DS goes to sleep in his bed)

I also made a reward chart and bought special Thomas stickers.

If DS goes to sleep in his bed he gets one sticker and if he stays in his bed all night he gets 2 (when he wakes up in the morning)

We explained very clearly the deal to him (he sleeps in his room, I sleep in my room). He was very upset the first night and really didn't want to get into bed. I ended up getting into his bed with him and waiting for him to go to sleep, then creeping out (not easy when 6 months pregnant!). Everytime he woke I was in there immediately, though he wouldn't calm down until I lay with him. Each time he fell asleep I left.

We had 3 nights like that where each night he was happier going into his long as I lay with him. Not easy for me.

Eventually my mum (who looks after DS whilst I work) told DS that mummy cannot get into bed with him but must sit in the chair whilst he goes to sleep. She repeated it many times to him all day.

That night he asked for me to get into bed with him but accepted that I didn't! (much to my surprise). So now I sit in the chair next to his bed whilst he goes to sleep.

We're 6 nights into it and he still takes at least 20 - 40 minutes to fall asleep but is waking up less in the night and stays awake for shorter times (first night he woke 3 times and took up to an hour to go back to sleep, last night he woke once and fell asleep 5 minutes later).

We really go overboard in congratulating him the next morning, with stickers, telling granny (who then tells anyone we have playdates with so he hears all the time how well he's doing). We also gave him a left over Christmas present after 2 nights, which he was thrilled about. He'll be getting another one in a few days time too.

I had serious doubts about it working but was desperate. It's not completely fixed (still can't leave him whilst he's awake) but is getting much much better.

Good luck

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