Dear God help me. 2yo wakes twice per night, and demands milk.

(15 Posts)
butteriesplease Wed 06-May-15 10:21:03

title says it all. DS3 has only once slept through (when he was in my bed).

He wakes twice a night, really, really cries, and demands 'milk inna bottah'. so somehow he is now have two drinks of milk during the night (which wasn't always the case at all). This can't go on. If I try and sooth him when he wakes up, it doesn't seem to work. What can I do?

He still naps during the day, if you take him for a walk(or if he's at nursery where he miraculously lies down on the damn bed and just goes to sleep).

At night, it's into bed (he;s in a single bed now) story with his milk, song, and basically I try and leave, he makes a fuss, and eventually he will sleep. lasat night he woke at 11ish, I got him back to sleep, he woke at 1ish, had milk, and again at 3ish?.

It's HELLISH. I need to do something, but I don't know what.

Iatemyskinnyperson Wed 06-May-15 10:25:33

Oh hon, you know what to do. Stop giving the milk, be very calm & reassuring and just grit your teeth till he gets over it. When I've had to do it I hold on to 2 thoughts: it's me that's changing things, so I have to be as gentle as possible while never giving in. If you do it for a while then give in, all the distress will be for nothing.

butteriesplease Wed 06-May-15 11:05:52

i have had little chats with him (!) during the day to say, so no more milk when you wake up, you've got baby bear and blankie, and it's all ok etc etc. but clearly he's a bit wee for that. If I'm getting rid of milk, should I scale it back, or just go cold turkey? I know he doens't need milk in the night, and he didn't used to have it (not sure how that happened really) but he clearly wants it to get back to sleep. He's really crying when he wakes, not just a wee whimper. he's such a lovely boy too.

HetzelNatur Wed 06-May-15 11:09:51


I have a 2yo as well, still breastfed and still feeding once or twice most nights.

I don't think you have to stop. He may well be getting his back molar teeth which makes them really clingy and cross, it's very sore I think. It does pass though after a few weeks.

He is asking for comfort - there's nothing wrong with this, but it is hard work for us! Could you perhaps put his cot in your room for a while to make it easier on you?

Sympathy x

HetzelNatur Wed 06-May-15 11:10:44

Also perhaps if he's crying, try half a dose of calpol for those nights?

I sometimes resort to this if mine really can't drift off or seems a bit warm. It really helps.

LetThereBeCupcakes Wed 06-May-15 11:11:06

I would water the milk down gradually so he gets gradually used to having less milk / more water. Then when he's on just water you can leave his beaker next to his bed and he can help himself.

Says she, who was up at 12 and 4 BFing her 2YO hmm

FATEdestiny Wed 06-May-15 11:37:10

At 2 years old I would just go cold turkey on the milk.

He will notice the milk being 'different' if it is watered down and it will just prolong the miserable time weaning off the milk.

Personally, I would offer a sports beaker of diluted squash for perceived night thirst (he won't actually be thirsty). But squash is seen as the work f the devil by some so you might do a sports beaker of water.

He isn't actually thirsty. He doesn't actually need milk. It is just an excuse, a reason to wake up and wake you up. You have to be the grown up and teach acceptable boundaries and expectations at nighttime.

butteriesplease Wed 06-May-15 13:35:00

Ok, so good ideas here, thanks all. He won't drink water out of a beaker (it is apparently 'dis-gutting') but if I can crack that in the day I will introduce at night.
however, I think FATE is right - he doesn't need the milk, nor is he properly thirsty I expect, he just wants milk and comfort doesn't he?

I can provide the comfort, but need to cut out the milk.
I don't want to give him calpol every night (but would give him that if he had a temperature), and he's never slept through, so don't think I can attribute it solely to teething (although, I guess this could well make it worse).

OK then, so looks like there are some tough nights ahead for DS3 and me, and everyone else in the house!

would it be very evil to try and give him a dummy??? yes it would. Ignore me. I'm sleep deprived.

YouMakeMyHeartSmile Wed 06-May-15 13:40:05

We have just this week managed to stop giving our 18 month old milk in the night. We just went cold turkey and swapped with water. The first 3 nights were pretty crap and she still woke up twice a night. Last night she only woke up once, had a drink of water and went back to sleep, so progress! DC2 is due in 9 weeks so basically we decided we had to take action. The way im looking at it is that I don't get any sleep anyway in between pregnancy insomnia, needing the toilet every 20 mins and getting up with DD twice a night so I might as well accept a few weeks of really awful sleep if it helps in the long run!

Bakeoffcake Wed 06-May-15 13:40:30

My dd was very similar, I think if you stop the milk he will still wake up wanting a cuddle/comfort.

We ended up being DDs bed into our room. We all got a good nights sleep from that night on, so I would highly recommend it. We only did it for about 7/8 months then she went in with her big sister. She just didn't like being on her

CloserToFiftyThanTwenty Wed 06-May-15 13:41:06

Water out of a beaker might well taste a bit grim if the beaker is used for other things and / or washed in a dishwasher

Get a new one - or a bottle with a sports top - and use it exclusively for water. Maybe even make it the night time cup only

FATEdestiny Wed 06-May-15 14:06:34

You are highly unlikely to be able to establish a dummy now. Two years ago I would definitely say yes. Dummies are worth their weight in gold for no tears settling and comfort. But aged 2 is just far too late for it to be an option.

butteriesplease Wed 06-May-15 22:18:21

Well done uoumakemyheaetsmile - I salute you ! I'm going for cold turkey on the milk tonight. wish me well... I explained at b3dtime to ds3 that there would be no more milk till brekkie. hope he remembers at 3am haha.

ThinkIveBeenHacked Wed 06-May-15 22:23:28

If he is taking milk to bed at bedtime, it is understandable that he feels he needs it when he wakes to get back to sleep.

If I were you id do milk and a story on the sofa, then teeth brushed, then into bed for another quicker story or a lullabye.

butteriesplease Thu 07-May-15 10:52:02

so last night was a small improvement got him back to sleep once. then 2nd time he came to our bed and cried so dh got him milk. may try 5he milk on sofa before bed.

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