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Ten month old fighting second nap - help!

(15 Posts)
Tumtitum Sun 18-Dec-16 18:17:08

DD is ten months and has always been a sleep fighter! I'm looking for some advice about her naps...
She has a very loose routine as when I tried to impose a routine it was horrendously stressful and didn't work!!!
She goes to bed between 6&7pm depending on how the day has been. She "self settles" although this ranges from happily going to sleep without a peek to her whinging and crying for 20-40 mins before conking out.
she goes for her first nap about 2.5/3 hours after she wakes. She won't go any earlier and by this time she normally feeds to sleep (which she hasn't done since about 3 months old, much to my despair!!!). She will then sleep anywhere from 30 mins to 2.5 hours.
I aim for her next nap around 3 hours later. Recently we have been doing a lot of buggy naps which have been reasonably successful but I am finding very tiring and we live in a hilly area which is killing my back! If I try in the cot it turns into a bloody nightmare.... she shouts and cries and crawls around her cot. She won't be rocked to sleep. She doesn't sleep if I stay wth her. Sometimes after she's exhausted herself she will let me rock her. If I try to feed her to sleep she bites me.
I don't think she's ready to drop to one nap as she is ready to drop 3 hours after waking.
Today we couldn't do a buggy nap for various reasons. I put her into bed after 3 hours awake, she was tired and fed. She crawled around her cot crying for an hour (with me popping up to cuddle her and lie her back down) and eventually I just had to give up. I did bedtime early and she conked out feeding around 5.30, although has woken and whinged a bit since then.
I don't know what to do!!! I know this can be a phase but she's always been crap at napping and this feels like it is going on forever!! She is perfectly happy even when she is tired, she just gets more and more hyper and doesn't want to eat etc so I don't think pushing her into one nap is the answer, plus when she is overtired her night time sleep gets worse and her naps get shorter so I don't want her to end up with only 30 mins day time sleep!!!
Anyone have any advice or experience to share?! Sorry for long and rambling post grin

FATEdestiny Sun 18-Dec-16 19:42:34

I agree, I don't think one nap is the right thing for her. It would be the easy answer and the thing that involves the least immediate hassle for you. But it sounds like she needs more sleep, not less.

It is not unusual for getting to sleep to be hard work (for the parent and baby) in the months of mobility skills developing. You really want to crack it because the longer you leave it, the harder it gets.

You think it's hard while she crawls around the cot? If she's not learnt to be still to sleep soon you'll have her standing up in the cot, walking around the cot and then leaning and climing out.

Its not clear what you are doing to help her learn to get to sleep? The basic skill it sounds like she needs is that to sleep, she must be still.

She gets that in the pushchair, because she physically can't move. Apart from that it sounds like she gets to the point of stillness only through complete exhaustion.

So if it was me, I'd find ways of teaching her to be still when going to sleep. I'd do this by leaning into the cot with a still, firm hand on her chest/back to keep her lying down and still. A tightly tucked in sheet may also help.

Tumtitum Sun 18-Dec-16 19:50:07

Hi FATE, we've spoken before on someone else's thread! I've tried firm hands on her but she's so strong and gets so distressed if I'm trying to pin her down sad occasionally I'll put her in her cot very drowsy and she'll start trying to move around and I can firmly stroke her back and she'll stay down and go to sleep, but that's very rare and I don't know if it counts as she's so near to sleep! God it's depressing thinking that it's probably going to get worse confusedsadshock

Tumtitum Sun 18-Dec-16 19:54:22

In answer to your question of what I do, I generally leave her, we have a short routine of pretty much nappy check/change, in sleeping bag, cuddle, wave sounds on and into cot then I leave her and if she gets upset I go in and try to comfort her in the cot but usually end up cuddling her, then back in the cot. If it's going on forever I end up cuddling/rocking her to sleep but she has to be near exhaustion to let me do this!

Tumtitum Sun 18-Dec-16 20:01:20

Also, I think a part of this, as she's always resisted naps, is that she just doesn't want to sleep. She cries when I change her nappy and put her into her sleeping bag as she knows that I'm trying to put her to sleep, and she's done this since we started our bedtime/naptime routines, even before I ever left her to whinge/cry and cuddled her to sleep all the bloody time!

LapinR0se Sun 18-Dec-16 20:01:37

At 10 months, this was our routine
Wake 6.30/7
Nap 9.15-10
Nap 12.45-3
Out for activity
Bed 6.45

FATEdestiny Sun 18-Dec-16 20:34:10

I've tried firm hands on her but she's so strong and gets so distressed...

With all due respect, it sounds like she gets distressed anyway at sleep time.

I get the impression from your post that the crying is unavoidable and nothing is possibly going to stop it. So if we take that at face value...

Then I can't really see a problem in making that crying and distress at least have purpose. That pyrpose could be yeaching her the cbasic skills in order to go to sleep herself.

Think about the essential skills you have to sleep, as an adult. For example:

- be still
- calm your body
- calm your mind
- slow your breathing
- be comfortable
- close your eyes
- feel safe; stress, anxiety, worry are all things that create insomnia.

These ^ are in an adult. A child additionally needs a comfort mechanism (comforter toy often, or self-movements like thumb sucking, eat stroking, hair twiddling etc).

So if your daughters distress is inevitable, I would at least console myself in that with the fact I was trying to teach her healthy sleep habits through her crying and distress.

SleepyRoo Sun 18-Dec-16 20:41:44

Is she sleeping through from 6pm to 6am?

Tumtitum Sun 18-Dec-16 20:46:43

I get what you're saying FATE but she doesn't get hugely distressed at bedtime, she does shout and gets angry but mainly just babbles around her cot. Whereas if I hold her down she would genuinely scream. I'm not sure I can do that sad I do appreciate your point tho, that's why I started leaving her to shout by herself in the first place as she would make lots of noise whether I was in the room or not, and it would take her longer to go to sleep if I was there so I figured she would shout/cry less overall if I left her to it, and hopefully learn that this means sleep time. Which she kind of had until this whole mobility thing kicked in!! Like I said I do appreciate your point and will give it some thought. I just can't bear the thought of if I did it and it didn't work I would have put her through all that distress for nothing sad have you done it with any of your kids and how long did it take?

Tumtitum Sun 18-Dec-16 20:49:05

Sleepy- no! I wish! If she did I would let her do what she likes during the day grin an average night is waking twice, she goes back to sleep after a feed. Sometimes she just wakes once but then wakes early, this morning at 5.45 but she goes through phases of being restless from 4...
She definitely needs more sleep overall, she has red little eyes most of the time sad

FATEdestiny Sun 18-Dec-16 21:15:33

have you done it with any of your kids and how long did it take?

The firm hand on chest thing?

Aside from my firstborn, with whom I made all the possible sleep mistakes I could have, the hand on chest (and dummy) has been my method of reassurance from birth. So it's not really a case of "how long will it take to work?" for me. It was an "Its ok, mummy is right here" thing I did from being a tiny, tiny newborn and right through until my reassurance was no longer needed to go to sleep. While others might cosleep or cuddle to sleep - I was reassuring baby in the cot.

It then becames very useful in the rolling phase (4-6 months). It was then I went for teaching stillness to sleep, before crawling started. As I said, the longer it takes to teach this, the more mobility baby has so the harder it is to teach and learn.

There are often threads on the Sleep board about things like my baby just keeps standing up and shouting me - she won't lie down. My baby is getting so distressed in the cot that she's launching herself over the sides and falling out. My toddler is in a bed because she was climbing out the cot, but she won't stay in bed. All these things are to do with the basic problem that baby has not learnt to lie down, relax and be still when you are tired.

Tumtitum Mon 19-Dec-16 07:06:34

Thanks FATE. Unfortunately I'm not able to go back in time so not really sure what to do about that!! I have tried to comfort her in the cot at various stages throughout her life and it's never worked.

Anyone out there with any other suggestions or advice??

FATEdestiny Mon 19-Dec-16 08:29:21

I know tum 😔, I was just trying to answer your question

Tumtitum Mon 19-Dec-16 12:45:22

Thanks anyway

FATEdestiny Mon 19-Dec-16 12:53:43

Albert Einstein said the definition of insanity is doing something over and over again and expecting the same result.

Doing something to help her learn has got to be better than just a wish and a prayer. Repeatatively lying back down and finding gentle ways of encouraging 'lie down quietly and still to sleep' is what I'd do anyway.

Good luck.

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