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15 month nap sleep training

(11 Posts)
LionRichie Wed 11-Nov-15 12:19:54

My 15 mo has 2 naps a day and has always been fed/rocked to sleep. I've had enough. So I'm attempting a version of the PUPD method but it is not going well!

In the past, I would go through her nap/bed routine then lie her in the cot with her dummy, say night night, and leave the room. If she whinge-cried and didn't stop within the time it took to make a cup of tea or sounded properly upset, I would go back in and rock to sleep. I'd say she settled herself 1 in 20 times.

I am now refusing to rock her so I either rub her back or pick her up till she stops crying then put her back in the cot. If she stands up I lay her down and tell her it's time to sleep. As soon as she's relatively calm, I leave the room and sit outside so she can't keep trying to look at me.

I just spent an hour lying her down again and again while she got more and more angry, then more and more upset. When the hour was up, I gave up and she will now have to wait until this afternoon for a nap.

Does that sound reasonable? I am fairly sure she is never going to sleep again right now as I can't see how it will work!! Yesterday I ended up giving in for the afternoon nap after an hour of screaming and a missed morning nap. Today I am determined to be stronger but think I am just going to traumatise her!

I'm not prepared to use any CC or CIO methods where I leave her alone while she cries herself to sleep. Does anyone have any suggestions? Do I need a cutoff when I just give up and rock her or let her go a whole day without sleep?!

FurryGiraffe Wed 11-Nov-15 12:41:24

My view, for what it's worth, is that you consider feeding/rocking to sleep for the naps and concentrate the sleep training on bed time. I know some people think that's confusing for your LO, but mine coped with it fine: he could self-settle at bedtime long before he stopped feeding to sleep for naps (in fact there was a point where he self settled for bed and would only nap on me!) My feeling (and experience with DS) is that it's easiest to introduce new sleep routines at the time of day when they are most tired and the urge to sleep is strongest- which is bedtime. This is particularly true at 15 months, as she may well be near to dropping from two daytime naps to one so her urge/need to sleep for each of her two naps probably isn't that strong. At bedtime her body needs the sleep more and she's got less ability/will to fight it IYSWIM. Also, if you persist in trying to sleep train at nap time with the result that she doesn't sleep, then she'll be hideously overtired by bedtime which will (a) mean getting her to sleep will be harder and (b) means you'll be horribly stressed from spending the day alternately trying to get her to sleep and dealing with her overtired and miserable. Once she's cracked self-settling at bedtime, then move onto naps. Or maybe wait and do it when she drops down to a single nap smile

Queendedede Wed 11-Nov-15 12:46:41

I've always been very lenient with naps, feeling it's more important that they nap at the right times rather than how they do it. I still rock my 19mo to sleep for nap, which he has in his cot for 2hrs. At bedtime I put him in his cot, say goodnight and walk out - he goes straight to sleep from wide awake. I enjoy the rocking for nap, we sing, cuddle and have kisses. It is a happy time for both of us which I know won't last mch longer.

With my eldest the rocking at nap time stopped working at 16 months so for the next year I drove around until he dropped off then transferred him into his cot. It worked, he napped, we were all happy. I use up my energy for bedtime strictness with going to sleep on their own. They know the difference.

Queendedede Wed 11-Nov-15 12:47:28

Cross post furry!

LionRichie Wed 11-Nov-15 12:48:23

Good point. At bedtime I do actually put her down awake. But she's so tired and has just had some milk so she tends to lose conciousness immediately! Milk makes her very sleepy!

LionRichie Wed 11-Nov-15 12:50:02

It's the nighttime wakings and naps that are taking their toll on me!

LionRichie Wed 11-Nov-15 12:51:48

I just can't keep going with me being the only one who can settle her for naps and night (partner has no boobs and she will not have a bottle). I want to go out for the day and not worry that she's going to scream herself silly!!

GothicRainbow Wed 11-Nov-15 12:55:04

I've done the same as Queen and Furry we focused on self settling at night a long time before naps were sorted.

I started some very gentle sleep training when my DS dropped to 1 nap a day which was around 14/15 months. He had never slept in a cot for a nap at this point and would need rocking to sleep and then to be laid on me.

Over a couple of months we did rocking to sleep and laying on the sofa instead of on me, then no rocking just laying straight on sofa and I would sit on the floor and rub his tummy, then we developed it to me just sitting next to him and finally me sat in the armchair across the room. When we got to this point and he was settling himself happily I introduced the cot for naps and would stay in the room for his whole nap. Then it was staying in the room until he was asleep and eventually this turned in to him self settling on his own.

It sounds long winded but a gradual approach worked really well for us.

LionRichie Wed 11-Nov-15 13:00:56

The gentle approaches do sound better and less upsetting! Guess I am just a bit babied out what with her refusal to stop breastfeeding at 3 hour intervals day and night, and the resettling every 45 min during naps. Argghh, it's exhausting.

FurryGiraffe Wed 11-Nov-15 16:16:20

It sounds horribly exhausting. I take my hat off to you: 15 months of night feeds sounds horrendous (I did 9- and that was quite enough). At the risk of offering unsolicited advice on- is night-weaning an option?

The resettling during naps may well improve when she drops down to a single nap (she'll be more tired and more likely to make it through into a second sleep cycle).

If you're rocking her to sleep, can your partner not do that? Can I ask (and I really do mean this in the nicest possible way) how persistent has he been in trying to get her down? I ask because I did all naps and bedtimes pretty much until I went back to work at 10 months. Then suddenly, DH had DS two days a week and had to develop ways of doing it (bit like if you start them at nursery/childminder I guess) and at first he relied a lot on car/buggy but then found he could walk round the room a bit/rub his head and that DS could then be put down asleep or nearly so. It might be that it would be easier to break the milk association if it's not you trying to put her down without milk.

LionRichie Wed 11-Nov-15 20:57:14

Ha ha yeah I'm sure my partner would come up with his own ways of settling her...only I can't stand listening to her scream for me for more than 15 min! I always give in and takeover knowing she will stop instantly. She really can scream very loudly and does this adorable arched back plus eye gouging slash attacks. Maybe I should just go out and leave them to it.

I do need to wean her for my own sanity. Planning to work on that once she starts sleeping!

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