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20 mo nap time at childminder

(6 Posts)
londonsquirrel Tue 31-May-16 16:43:39

Hi all,
I have a 20 mo son, who has been a terrible sleeper ever since -- only started to have "enough" sleep after 12m (where "enough" according to sleep time ranges they mention in the books).
He had reflux problems and I ended up breastfeeding him to sleep. At about 12m I was so exhausted I had to change something. Gradually and gently we taught him to sleep without breast. I have always been by his side when he was going to sleep. And up until recently he was waking up 3-4 times a night. Now it is more like 1-2. I have to go to his room in the middle of the night and stay with him till morning, he will not sleep otherwise.
Now, I am hoping to go to work for 3-4 days a week in September, he is going to be 2yo. We have been using a childminder for 2 months now and he quite likes it there. But he has only been there for the morning, I always took him home for a nap. When he goes for a day nap I always lie together with him and stay there until he falls asleep. He sleeps on a big bed with a cot by the side. We have always shared a bed.
I have no idea how to teach him to sleep on his own now. Please share some mumsnet wisdom with me!

FATEdestiny Tue 31-May-16 20:23:28

You gradually and gently taught him to sleep without being breastfed. You can follow exactly the same mentality for learning to sleep without you. Slow, gradual, gentle.

Whatever you do now, make tiny changes towards independent sleeping.

If you currently snuggle right up to him, try snuggling just your head close to his and a hand on chest, but body angled away from his.

If he will tolerate that, try getting him to sleep with just your hand on him for reassurance. Then remove hand when settled (but put back if unsettled), but stay lying next to him, face to face, but not touching.

When he'll tolerate this start turning your body so you are not face to face. Try facing the ceiling. Then rolling to face away from him.

This is a key stage. Maintain for a while where you can put him down in the bedside cot, but roll over yourself and face away from him. But stay there as a presence until asleep.

Then roll to the edge of the bed, far away from the cot. Then sit on bed facing away as he goes to sleep. Then stand by the bed. Etc. All the time moving towards teaching him that he'll be put to bed then you will withdraw yourself as he goes to sleep.

londonsquirrel Tue 31-May-16 22:25:21

FATEdestiny, thanks for your advice!
When he was 12 months old it was slightly easier physically -- he did not take any attempts to walk away (he wasn't even walking back then actually).

Now it is difficult to keep him focused on the fact that we are going to sleep now. Even though he has a perfect predictable routine, he cries like mad when we finish the bedtime story: I have to hug and hold him and then lie him down. He is not happy and tries to crawl/run away and I get him back to where we were.
Actually, this has been going on for the last 1-2 months, before that he was perfectly happy to lie down after the bedtime story. I am not sure what has gone wrong here...

gubbinsy Wed 01-Jun-16 17:22:19

My DS is 2.5 and we still sit with him to go to sleep. He started with childminder at one and I was worried too. You know what, he falls asleep completely differently there - she rocked him I think but now he just sleeps in a pushchair- will never do that here !
You need to work with her and if you feel it's time to change things at home go for it but I was surprised how he adapted!

TooMinty Wed 01-Jun-16 17:38:14

I don't think you need to worry - the childminder will have their own techniques. My 19 mth old will only nap in a quiet, dark room on his own at home but at nursery they all lie on the floor together with music playing and lights projecting and he still naps! Peer pressure starts young...

londonsquirrel Wed 01-Jun-16 17:52:04

Wow, that gives me hope. TooMinty, gubbinsy -- thanks a lot! I will definitely try to tackle his sleep habits at home as going to sleep is slightly exhausting now... I still need to do stuff at home after he went to sleep but at times I simply do not have energy!

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