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3yo bedtime battles - tell me it gets better!

(5 Posts)
TheVeryHungryPreggo Tue 17-Nov-15 09:26:06

For a few months now we have had battles to get DS to stay in bed almost every night at bedtime. DS is rarely asleep before 9 or 9:30 and wakes again at 7. No naps. Sticker charts are useless. He won't stay in bed unless he is literally too tired to get out of it. Sometimes you see his eyes droop and he clutches the teddy a bit closer, you think sleep is imminent, but go out to the kitchen to get something and then there's a blast of maniacal laughter from knee height and DS whizzes round the kitchen on his scooter. We have to stay in his room with him to keep him in there and occasionally physically stand in front of the door. It eats an enormous chunk of the very little time we have together.

We live in a flat all on one level, and we have the whole place in semi-darkness every night from 7:15 onwards. Never get to watch anything on tv because it's 9:30 when DS is finally down and we wait 15 mins to make sure he settles and won't hear the TV noise, then I'm too tired. I'm on mat leave at the moment so have tea on the table early; when I'm at work we can't cook and eat after as we don't get home til after 6 and eating at 7 throws everything back - we need at least one of us to full-time supervise DS having his tea, change into pyjamas, play a bit and get him into bed. If we do let him watch CBeebies in the day it's never on later than 6:30 and after that the only activities are playing with his cars on his bedroom floor, doing puzzles and reading bedtime stories. No screens.

It's the same routine every night and the same battles over the same things - pyjamas, get into bed, milk, teeth, stories. I thought after months of it being the exact same thing every night he should bloody well know to expect what comes next by now!!

Tell me you had a preschooler like mine who suddenly got it one day and now mostly goes to bed with no fuss! I don't know how much longer I can take this, as DD is here now and we tend to spend the evenings looking after one child each and doing chores...

Queendedede Tue 17-Nov-15 20:19:56

Sorry, no advice as such but I have two boys - one 6yrs old and the other 19months. The youngest is still in a cot but we put the oldest in a bed at 21 months old and he never got out. I put this down to the fact we made his room so dark that he dare not get out as he couldn't see where he was going!

Artandco Tue 17-Nov-15 20:27:42

I just go with the later times without stressing about it

We all get home around 6.30pm, eat together at 7.30pm. Children go to bed now around 9pm as school in the morning ( 5 and 4year olds), but when both had no school they often went later

We only have one bedroom in our flat so they just slept in our bed when tired at 3 years

Can you all have dinner later so more relaxed and not doing it twice, then let her play quietly after until say 8.30pm, before starting pjs/ story and bed? If she never in bed before 9 /9.30pm anyway you might as well aim for that time but less stressed about it

Believeitornot Tue 17-Nov-15 20:28:48

How long does he take to settle if you sit with him? If it is quicker then I would do that.

Wotsitsareafterme Tue 17-Nov-15 20:36:51

Op I feel your pain. I had dd1 cracked by this age but dd2 is a fecking nightmare. I really relate to the having no evening because you're too tired. That's this week!!
I sit with dd2 I can't bear to get in to the cycle of her getting out of bed sad

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