Please help me!(2 Posts)
DD is 2.5yrs.
She's always been an awful sleeper - probably made worse by the fact that we've through exhaustion allowed her to get into bad habits.
She has a dummy. She cannot fall asleep on her own. Never has. I don't really mind this as since she stopped napping she falls asleep really quickly and the cuddles are lovely.
BUT she wakes multiple times per night. She needs me or DH to lie with her til she goes back to sleep - then carefully get out of her bed without waking her which can take ages!
She's had various health issues resulting in many disturbed nights. She definitely associates milk with comfort and going back to sleep, and will always ask for milk when she wakes in the night. We don't allow milk until after 6am.
I am utterly exhausted and it's taking it toll on my mental and physical health. I need her to sleep better but I can't see how to achieve this without her crying and being upset which I can't bear.
Please wise ones help me
You could try gradual retreat. And I do mean graaaaaaadual. So over a period of weeks or months. But consistent.
So start by coming in, cuddling, but sitting beside her in bed rather than lying right down. If she cries then just lie down as normal but the next time, or the next night, try sitting again instead.
Eventually, and with inevitable two steps forward one step back , you go to sitting in chair by her bed, then gradually move chair away further and further so that eventually you are going in, cuddle, kiss, comfort, and sit in chair by the door till she's asleep and then finally chair outside the door maybe with some initial " pottering" in and out picking up toys, smoothing blankets and then return to chair etc.
Ultimate aim is that you can go in and offer comfort and then leave and she'll go back to sleep herself. At this stage the wakes will likely tail off quite a bit.
There's a really good post on this if you do a search. It's called "What worked for us. Hope this helps" or something like that.
We did it with DD when she was 13 months and it worked. We did it very slowly though, figuring we'd been that sleep deprived for so long that a few more weeks wouldn't hurt us!
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