Help meeeee(14 Posts)
I'm hoping someone has been through the same thing. My DS turns 3 at the end of the month he was a okay-ish sleeper would fight going to sleep at first but slept from 8-6.30 then he dropped his nap and he went to bed no problems for 6.30. About three months back, he started waking up every night wanting me or my DP to stay in there with him and this has carried on.
I now have a 8 week old too, I'm breastfeeding but i express night feeds so I can have a break. But now my break has gone as I'm on his floor most nights, he gets out of his bed and gets on a duvet on the floor with me. If I try and sneak out he will wake. I have tried ignoring him, reassure then leaving and even standing at his door. He does NOT give up, he just shouts "mama, I need you its a emergency" then that wakes the baby. I have tried asking him why he wants me to sleep on his floor, his reply was "i want to give you a good morning kiss"
My DP has offered to sleep on his floor but he has a rotated spine so if he does, he will be out of action the next day and in pain at work. How can I break the cycle?
I would suggest that your eldest, like all 3 year olds, is behaving incredibly selfishly. It's what being a "threenager" is all about. This and the Terrible Twos is when children need to bring to learn that their needs are not the centre of the whole world. Most toddlers find this hard to learn, it's the reason for toddler tantrums - when toddler does not get exactly what they want when they want it.
Especially so now he has a sibling, he needs to understand (in a kind, gentle way of course) that his needs are not more important than baby's. He may well be jealous of the attention taken away from him by the baby, and this is a reaction to expressing that.
So start with positive and appropriate attention. Ensure he gets lots of positive attention and some 121 time with you during the daytime. Other practice in the daytime would be patience (wait for your attention while you finish feeding baby, for example), sharing and turn-taking and being able to concentrate on something on his own. All with lots of praise.
Then boundaries. Again, you need these set in the day if you expect to be able to set expectations at night.
If you are breastfeeding an 8 week old, why are you sleeping in the toddlers room? Are the baby's needs less important than your toddlers needs? It would certainly be true that a breastfeeding newborn needs mum far more than a 3yo who is far less dependant.
I mention this because, quite frankly, your 3yo needs to accept that his behaviour at night is unwarranted and unwelcome. Like any other unwelcome (or "bad") behaviours, he needs boundaries and expectations around it.
It is reasonable to say he will be sleeping in his bed on his own. So a process of rapid return will help him learn that. He is using the "it's an emergency" line completely inappropriately (I assume it's not an emergency?) Because because it gets your attention. That's not a need, it's the manipulation of a typical self-centred toddler. I dont mean your child, personally, is self-centred. Just that this is typical of the toddler tantrum years and a normal behaviour phase at this age.
So there is no harm, and it will do your child good, to start establishing that some behaviour is not acceptable and will not be tolerated. Destroying everyones sleep for no real reason is exactly such behaviour.
So lots of positive attention in the day. Then at night, strict face on and no nonsense accepted. In bed, kiss, leave, close door. Repeat, Repeat, Repeat, repeat. It may be a million times the first night. Be consistant and it will reduce night on night. Then in a week when he's sleeping better, you and DH are sleeping better and so is baby - then everyone will be in a better place.
Every time I am feeding we play a little game, he does always wait for me to finish feeding him and helps me with nappy changes. He’s a excellent big brother, it’s just the sleep.
Tried doing that last night, we all literally had no sleep at all. I praise him when he is good every time and I don’t think he is jealous of the time I spend with baby just yet..
My DP usually does the night feeds as I express the milk he needs, I BF in the day time but I’m useless on no sleep (like today) thank you for your advice!
I don't think it's fair to expect a young child of 3 not to be affected by his parent's decision to have another child. Shutting him in his room and withdrawing comfort and support because it's inconvenient to everyone else is unfair and feels borderline abusive. Poor boy.
If you as adults decide to have a second child, your first shouldn't suffer as a result. You can't expect him to stop being a toddler/affected by the massive changes you've made to his world.
As an aside, if you're not expressing/feeding during the night you'll probably notice your supply reduce massively.
I do not lock my child in his room.. people are just looking for a argument these days. Stop being so judgemental and rude. “Poor boy” and borderline abuse?! I sat with him the whole time he was awake last night reading him books in his bed. You need to calm down... I’ve breastfed two babies, I know how it works.
Then at night, strict face on and no nonsense accepted. In bed, kiss, leave, close door. Repeat, Repeat, Repeat, repeat.
I was responding to this.
You want a suggestion? Try lovebombing.
How would you like it if your world turned upside down and you had no part in it? You're not able to rationalise time and the night feels long. You ask the person closest to you for comfort and instead they kiss you, walk out and close the door without speaking. How would you feel?
And you're an adult who can rationalise emotions. Your 3 year old can't.
My 2 year old went through a period of night waking and needing to be in our bed once his sibling arrived earlier this year. I think it's common that they wake in the night when big changes happen. He was younger so couldn't articulate what was going on but I think he was upset the new arrival got to sleep with mummy and daddy and he was alone. We just went with it and it passed.
The lack of sleep makes it so hard to know what to do but just chose something that suits you and your family. Your little one will adjust to his sibling but it takes time. You are his mum so you know him best. Would books on tape help, or a mattress on your floor he can sleep on if he gets lonely, talking to him during the day and coming up with a plan together?
Thank you for your reply!
It’s just a vicious cycle of them waking each other up all night but like you said I’m sure he will adjust soon. He started doing it before baby was here so I don’t know if it’s normal for his age anyway.
I have tried coming up with a plan for him, saying we will go to the soft play centre if he can sleep on his own but he doesn’t fall for that! He loves me reading to him so I will just stick with that and ride it out I think
we will go to the soft play centre if he can sleep on his own
His 3 year career is logic will see everyone else sleeping with someone else and wonder why he's meant to sleep on his own.
I honestly think you are making bedtime and his night waking far too sit nicely with him and read stories? Fuck that. It's nighttime.
Even without the new baby I would be saying this. He needs to go to bed and go to sleep. That's what nighttime is for.
I have no issues with people comforting children if they wake, but he is just pissing about, with no consequence.
Bed. And when he wakes, go in, reassure and leave. Repeat, getting less and less. Send your oh in to reassure and then leave.
You all need sleep, your toddler included.
I just read his normal bedtime book, then sit by him till he falls asleep usually. I just don’t want him feeling pushed out, he has had croup over the last 10 days so I suppose I am being a bit soft. I think I just feel guilty for having another!
I have tried reassuring and leaving, he just keeps shouting me and won’t give up. He will stay awake all night if he has too. I need a plan.
We have a very similar situation to yours except our baby is a older and I can't express. What works for us is when DD1 wakes in the night, DH goes into spare bed with her. If you don't have a spare bed then could you put a mattress on his bedroom floor next to his bed? When DH goes to DD1 in the night he gives her a cuddle but doesn't get into conversation with her at all, just lays next to her and she goes back to sleep again fairly quickly and so does he and the disruption to all of our sleep is minimal. I personally don't think you should be reading him stories in the night but you might have your reasons for this. Just try and all get back to sleep as quickly as possible in whatever way you can. It won't last forever (I hope!)
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