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Help 4 year old coming into our bed every night

(17 Posts)
Babybeesmama Wed 04-Jan-17 08:30:07

4 year old was generally sleeping fine, in with his sister on bunk beds.. until about 5 weeks ago.. he's consistently coming into our bed every single night.. it's driving me mental.

So.. we've decided tonight it's the big eviction night... someone please give me a strategy!!

We do normally stay with him to go to sleep but this has never caused a problem with night time sleep - he's generally slept through despite us doing this. But I am open to stopping this if it could be what's contributing to him waking.

I'm so tired.. am pregnant with no 3 & need to sort this asap 🙈.

Thanks in advance!

Becciilouisex3 Wed 04-Jan-17 10:20:31

Unfortunately I think the only strategy their is, is to be firm and explain that he needs to be a big boy and sleep in his own room.

Does he know that he has a little. Other or sister on the way? Could you maybe explain to him that mommy needs to get lots of sleep now that his brother or sister is in your tummy? Sometimes if kids think they're doing something important and grown up, that mindset is enough to get them to do things.

I think if not, it's possibly a case of settling him down when he wakes and taking him back to bed, then repeating this process if he continues to get up. You may even want to stay with him in his room until he falls back to sleep although if you do this be aware you might have to do it for a little while until he settles back down again. It'll be a tiring time whilst you're trying to sort this out. It totally worth it once you have!

barefootinkitchen Wed 04-Jan-17 10:27:11

We did a - stay in your bed for 5 nights and get a little toy she wanted. It took a while but eventually she did it , I was amazed it worked. That was when she was 4.5 now a year later, we are going through another phase of it. She's in every night again but kicks less so I haven't started a new plan yet. Good luck!

Ilovecaindingle Wed 04-Jan-17 10:27:55

Have you told him that parents need sleep too? Maybe no trip to the shops /park telling him you are just too tired. Maybe if he stayed in his own bed to tonight you can go tomo? I used to put 20p under ds pillow when he went to bed and if he slept properly in his own bed without keep shouting for me(at his own admission he didn't need me for anything!) he could keep the money!! Blackmail /behaviour modification. Whichever suits!! He was about 4/5.

NapQueen Wed 04-Jan-17 10:31:31

I think if you stay when he falls asleep he probably finds it impossible to fall back to sleep without you.

user1483397087 Wed 04-Jan-17 15:37:57

Hi everyone
I'm new to MUMSNET but I could really do with some advice about sleep training fro my 3.5 yr old. Has anyone tried the gradual withdrawal method? I've tried the repeated putting back to bed, which just ends in total meltdown and clinging to legs. I've also tried co sleeping which didn't work. At the moment I'm doing the popping in and out every 5 minutes but this doesn't seem to working in the middle of the night. She seems to have a very busy mind and has night fears about things she has imagined or seen.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

Babybeesmama Wed 04-Jan-17 20:04:22

Thanks for everyone's replies. He does know he's getting a brother or sister.. but he's seeming apprehensive about it.. & I think this has contributed to his unsettled nights!
I've talked to him tonight about me being tired etc & then as I've put him to bed that if he comes into my room he'll be brought straight back to his bed.. he burst into tears! So he does understand... he's a very sensitive gentle little guy.. so we'll take it steady. The chair bed is ready so if he wakes we'll bring him back & lay on that.. I'll try that for a few nights anyway & see.

Thanks again all

JungleWait Wed 04-Jan-17 20:06:51

I lock our bedroom door and warn him that that is what we are doing as we need privacy and he is a big boy. It works. He will cry on 1st day, but then will very quickly realise you are deadly serious. Also, give him a cuddly toy too.

littledinaco Wed 04-Jan-17 20:16:03

Have you asked him why he's coming in?

At 4, he may be too young to properly empathise that you're tired and need to sleep, therefore he needs to stay in bed. Especially for him to try and think that through in the middle of the night.

You're probably right, he may be really anxious about getting a sibling or something else is worrying him, especially if he's previously slept fine. Could you maybe set up a little camp bed next to your bed so he can just come in with minimal disturbance to you?

I understand how exhausting it is being pregnant, especially with other DC but it won't be forever, he'll go back to sleeping all night on his own.

Becciilouisex3 Wed 04-Jan-17 21:33:29

Oh bless him! He sounds like a lovely little lad so hopefully you can get over this hurdle! Good luck x

Babybeesmama Wed 04-Jan-17 21:39:44

When I asked why he's coming in he says my bed is comfy & warm! I got him a thicker tog duvet.. didn't work. DH is on board with the chair bed plan tonight.. so we'll give that a try. I had thought about setting it up in my room & seeing what he does.. I'll bear that in mind.

He's too cute & melts my heart 🙈 his favourite days are Tuesday when we go to Aldi & he helps me clean in the afternoon (seriously)!

Talk75 Thu 05-Jan-17 05:52:38

Your little boy sounds lovely.

I've been having the same issues with my little girl and she's now 7 and the older she gets the harder it is to stop her habit of coming into our bed at night.

Basically she has forgotten or possibly never learnt how to self soothe and get herself to sleep.

Her reasons are the same as your little boys - my bed is warm and cosy, she's wants to cuddle me and more recently she is scared of the dark.

I have noticed that if she manages to go to sleep by herself first thing in he evening it stops hers coming in during the night. But if I sit with her while she doses off (which I've been doing for weeks now) she comes in every night - sometimes twice a night. I've got to the point where I'm now exhausted and it's making it really hard to function.

So I've made a plan which might also help with your little one.

She's got a new nightlight and also a really lovely cosy thick fleece blanket (the duvet gets too cold as she kicks it off in the night). I've also got her a mattress topper to make her bed really soft and she lies on another blanket so she's really cosy. I'm also getting her a little clock to go by the side of the bed and then I'm going to try and gently sleep train her by popping back to tuck her in every 5-7 mins of so. Also am setting up a reward chart too. I've also stopped letting her get into bed with me. If she wakes in the night I take her straight back to bed and sit with her until she sleeps.

It's going to be hard but I'm starting it this weekend.

Good luck xx

Becciilouisex3 Thu 05-Jan-17 09:33:06

Ah you are so lucky to have such a gorgeous little boy! He's not naughty at all he's just doing it for comfort it seems! It's probably a mix of what he says (comfy and warm bed) and the fact that your presence in the bed comforts him too.

I'm sure you'll get past this relatively soon because your DS understands that it's important to you for him to sleep on his own, bless him!

Babybeesmama Thu 05-Jan-17 13:46:11

Well.. he slept all night in his own bed! Never woke up! Came in proud as punch at 730 saying I stayed in my own bed mummy!

I'm well aware it could be a one off... but maybe our little chat yesterday helped a bit.

I let him choose a treat today- he chose a visit to pets at home bless him! Free & fun!

NapQueen Thu 05-Jan-17 13:47:33

Ahhh he sounds so lush!

Becciilouisex3 Thu 05-Jan-17 14:03:22

Oh yay! I think you've totally taken the right approach! He feels like he's doing something really good and making mom happy by staying in his own bed which he has!

Words of praise and rewards, keep them up and you should be fine! Maybe now you could start a sticker chart? A sticker every night he stays in his own bed all night and then a treat at the end of the week if his sticker chart is full? What a lovely lad!

Talk75 Thu 05-Jan-17 15:15:26

Aw that's so lovely to hear!

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