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7 yo won't sleep

(5 Posts)
pspc Tue 03-Jan-17 12:48:26

Hi my ds is 7 and he won't sleep. He started having issues with sleeping right when he was being potty trained. He was afraid of wetting his bed so he started calling us to go to the toilet with him during the night. Recently it has got worse. He now makes every possible excuse to delay bedtime. It is always very stressful as he will try to delay it on every possible way (refusing to brush his teeth, refusing to have a wee, hidding his pjs, chasing his little sister up, winding his little sister up, refusing take his clothes off and put on pjs etc). This goes on usually from 8 to 8.30. Then he finally goes to bed we keep on with the routine - a story (he reads it now), a prayer and lights off. He doesn't let me or my DH leave the bedroom until he is fast asleep and if he wakes up he runs around the house to find us and to go back with him to his room. He wants us to cuddle him to sleep. Lately the time it takes for him to fall asleep as increased - it takes about an hour now even when he wakes up in the middle of the night. He has been waking up 3 to 4 times every night. Last night he woke up at 10.30, 12.30, 3.30 and 5.30. Needless to say he is tired and grumpy during the day (and so are we). I've tried different night lights, there is a light in the landing and one in the toillet, he has a torch, he has special cuddly toys, he has glow in the dark stars everywhere in his room. He doesn't watch tv during the week, we have dinner at 7 (we both work full time and I only get home at 6.30), he has a bath every other day after dinner (he hates showers and baths) and we have a very balanced diet. I've tried talking with him about what is troubling him but he says he's fine, he just wants us to be there with him. I'm at my wits end as I would really want to help my son out. He is tired and grumpy and I want to help him. Any suggestions?

FATEdestiny Tue 03-Jan-17 13:49:13

At 7 years old basically you just need to get strict.

Talk through with your husband and agree on a really firm and inflexible set of boundaries.

Remove all faff surrounding surrounding bedtime. Seperate his and his sister's bedtime for a while to remove that distraction. A very simple teeth, story, prayer, bed. 10 mins max.

Then just refuse all further requests for anything and keep on returning him immediately to bed at any time he wakes.

It's just about firm boundaries and expectations at this age.

Ilovecaindingle Tue 03-Jan-17 14:16:24

Does he have after school /social activities? Put the brakes on these for a while explaining that you are too tired to attend as you don't get any adult unwind time before bed. My dds x2 took a while to realise that adults need some child free time and that their bedtime was important to us too!! It's not selfish to be strict about bedtime - kids need sleep and we need time for our relationship also!!

SoupDragon Tue 03-Jan-17 15:46:55

What consequences are there for all the faffing about?

pspc Tue 03-Jan-17 16:11:33

SoupDragon if he upsets his sister or gets too loud he won't have a bed time story. If he is pushing the limits he won't have the bed time story and he won't have his wii on Sunday or no treat on Friday (usually we have a mom and son outing on Friday after school and we go for a treat at a local caffee as it is the only day I can leave work earlier).

Thank you for your messages. I do recognise that the firm boundaries are the issue here. Before we went on holiday he was getting much better but then he slept at his granny for a few days and later I found out he slept with her and grandpa ended sleeping in the spare room. It's been a nightmare since then. sad

He has after school club most days as I work until 5/5.30. He will start going to a football academy as someone suggested he might need to get some energy out of his system.

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