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2 month old bedtime(40 Posts)
I’ve got twin boys that are 2 months old (adjusted age, they were premature).
I have no trouble getting them down for naps during the day - after a feed, or in the pram or car, or with a dummy, or in a sling. This is usually after about 45 mins to an hour of awake time. But after 8pm they just DONT sleep! They get seriously overtired and I just can’t get them to go down. Finally they crash at around midnight.
I’m open to suggestions - anyone got any good tips?
My advice would be read up on the fourth trimester & get some reassurance that this is all totally normal (if you haven't already, and I've assumed they are your first - apologies if not!). Mine was exactly the same (admittedly I only had the one- kudos to you managing twins); I had no concept of a bedtime until he was 5 months old and he spent the first 13 weeks of his life screaming continuously from 8pm-1am 😑
Best advice seems to be lots of fresh air during the day, as they need to start to learn the difference between day&night. But 2 months is so young still, so they won't have grasped it yet.
Even now (7 months old) it's not fixed in stone, but we generally get him down by 9pm, which works for me; as a night owl I appreciate the later wake ups in the morning.
My (early bird) friends with similar age babies go with the 7pm bedtime, but then have a 5.30/6am alarm call...
At that age, I just let them sleep when they are ready to sleep. If that's midnight, so be it.
@WineInTheWillows that would be fine with me, but they get so overtired and they get miserable! They don’t want to feed or play and get really cranky and swallow a tonne of air.
@Vicky1989x yup, we have it on all night - they wake each other up otherwise as they are big nighttime grunters.
Would white noise etc help DD tune them out?
Would they settle if DH took them out in the car?
@crazychemist we need to see your exact schedule with them to help really as without knowing when your day naps are, how many, how long, feeds, how many, what size ect....
It's impossible to help without that information really as evening/night follows day time and is totally informed by everything that comes before
I have 3 month old twins and two other children so I understand what a juggle it all is 😀
@ChampooPapi fair enough!
Routine at the moment is along the lines of:
8am wake up, back asleep by 8.30
10am up, back asleep by 11am, most often in pram
1.30 wake up, back asleep by 2.30
4ish wake up (quite variable this one), back to sleep by 5pm
So we’ve got an initial wake time of 30 mins, two lots of 1hr(ish) with naps that are usually 1.5-2 hrs (sometimes these are interrupted by 4 year old.....). Then it starts going a bit skewiff...the aim for me is for them to sleep till about 7, then back down at 8ish. But they tend to only sleep for 30 mins, and then that’s it till about midnight....
I really wouldn’t mind if they weren’t clearly so unhappy about it! I wondered if they need more awake time in total, so tried letting them stay downstairs for another hour after that nap before I take them up, but I just can’t get them back to sleep after an hour, and by 90 mins they are getting seriously over tired and upset. I can’t stretch their awake times at other times of day without them getting overtired and naps then being disastrously short.
Do I just need to wait this out? I know they’re only tiny. I don’t mind at all how they go to sleep, happy for them to feed or cuddle to sleep, I just wish they didn’t get tired and miserable in the evening!
@crazychemist brill, really helps.
So I would be getting them up earlier then 8am for a start, seven fifteen or 7-30 , yes it's only thirty minutes or so but it makes a difference from my experience. (These are my third and 4th babies).
They can be stretched a bit more in the Morning if you can, half an hour is not long to be awake for, I know they are adjusted but they were only 4 weeks early were they? Or was it more? Really sorry of they were a lot more premature because obviously this does effect the routine as they are still 'waking up' so to speak.
Mine were 3 weeks early so they don't adjust them, they will be 14 weeks Wednesday so imagine yours are around this age too?
They both have 4 sleeps a day currently. I would't have them having any more, and certainly not sleeping for 2 hours 5pm untill 7pm, in my personal opinion and experience that is too long this late in the day for three month old.
Any sleeps from 5pm with ours I only let them have 30 or fourth minutes. Perfect time to wake them as we can eat or do an early dinner with the other two girls who are nearly 3 and 11, then wake them for a bath which cheers them up. Just the act of picking them up and walking into the bathroom to run the taps rouses them in a civilised way without it feeling brutal!
They should be sleeping no less then three hours a day but no more then 5 really. It sounds like yours are sleeping more like 6/7 hours a day.
The buggy will always make them sleep for ages so I do wake mine if they are asleep for too long, although if they've only had thirty minutes, or an hour in their sleeps so far that day I will let them sleep for 2 hours or more.
I try and keep their total around the 4 to 4 and a half hour a day mark. That seems to be babies sweet spot for naps. Sometimes that will be one very long nap in the afternoon or late morning in the buggy , or in their cots, followed by shorter ones, or they will all be hour long naps. (Ish!)
So it is a baby lead schedule but with a but of manipulation by waking them and making sure they are awake between the sleeps for at least an hour.
Sometimes this is impossible and I'm not saying make them over tied or stimulated when they are drooling asleep on your shoulder! But a change of room or scenery helps stretch the wake up times even another ten minutes which has a huge effect over the course of a few weeks. Little by little you can really get them down to bed a lot earlier.
The goal I suppose at this stage is getting them down an hour earlier then they are to start, with the final time as maybe 7pm.
Mine are still a little off this, going down between half seven and 8 thirty.
But they too were not going to 'bed' untill 11pm/12am a few weeks ago so there is definitely a turning point in being able to tinker with their routine as well as developmentally, they will go down earlier and easier I promise.
We have ours separate at night currently, do you do both and swap nights with your partner? Have you separated them? Do they co sleep? Where do they nap?
I think it's very important to get them napping in their cots and not ALWAYS buggy or car, this can create an issue sometimes later on. It also does mean they sleep for less longer though which is a pain but it creates really good sleep associations for them, as well as they not sleeping too long in the day when they do need to be tired for the night.
The red are bottle feeds, she takes 6 oz or abouts at each feed
All totally normal. Babies that young don’t go to bed early, they are frequently up til midnight. Get your husband to stay up with them from 9pm while you get some much needed sleep.
From 5/6 months onwards they go to bed earlier
First of all many congratulations on your twins.
Secondly, I would just say that whatever routine you want your twins to get into, please remember that all routines have to be learnt. I wish someone had told me this when I had my twins and I just expected them to know the routine because I’d read it in a book. If you started a new routine tomorrow, how long would you have to do it before it became what you would consider to be routine?
All I can say is that they are still tiny. It is exhausting I know but please give it time. I remember well that if I wanted mine to go down at 7ish then they had to be awake by 5pm.
But babies do also have their own preferences. I used Gina Ford as a guide and I think I tried every night to get my babies to do the magical dream feed at 11pm, but they just would not be do it!! I remember every night trying to wake them with cool flannels, noise etc. But they were absolutely sound asleep. After about 12 weeks of this I gave up. The downside was that I had to do a 3am feed for many months, but I went to bed myself a lot earlier to compensate.
My point is that it’s early days and there is no magic solution, especially as you are also trying to fit around other children. It’s going to be the hardest 12 months of your life but you will get through it. Twins are amazing but they bring totally new challenges that only twin parents can relate to. Good luck.
@Onthetrain75 same on the dream feed. I wouldn't wake mine once they were down around 7/8pm. Even if it meant feeding at 2 or 3am like yourself, which I did with my second daughter.
I am actually in bed now about to turn off. I'm in with the twin from the huckleberry chart who sleeps through untill 7am, but I know that can change any night so I always still go to bed by 9. Early nights up untill the year point for me are the only way I personally can stay sane, even when sleep improves the days just take so much of you!
Babies do seem to thrive on a slightly more relaxed and flexible Gina ford approach. Her timings for sleeps and awake are pretty much what a kind of 'text book' healthy baby follows naturally anyway. Though I never follow her 'now have a piece of toast' advice. I eat when ever, screw that!.
I've also never used her template for the days before 12 weeks, I doubt they would work before then for my babies, they are still getting used to living on the outside before three months I just let them do them untill around ten weeks. Then I slowly start to install some longer awake times, bath time routine, wake ups, making room lighter for day naps, putting them down in their cot awake as much as possible ect
Have you looked at how much time your babies are awake in 24 hours? Babies (all people, really!) will only sleep so many hours in a 24 hour cycle. It sounds like your babies are sleeping a lot during the day. If you want them to be asleep more at night you may need to think about altering their routine to reduce the amount of time they are napping. My DD is older but she sleeps around 13 hours in 24, so I don’t let her nap more than 2 hours a day in total so she sleeps 11 hours at night. If she naps more in the day she’s up in the night. Obviously your babies will need more than 2 hours in the day but that’s just an example.
@ChampooPapi, that’s a lot of detail, thank you very much. They are very similar age to yours, 14 weeks, but born 5 weeks early. I don’t think they can quite manage only 4 naps just yet - until about 2 weeks ago they were literally only awake for feed/nappy change except for maybe managing 30 mins of awake time twice a day. They are very different from my eldest - she had decent chunks of awake time from day 1, but these two are so sleepy! An hour earlier to bed would be amazing.... my DD was never able to go down at 7pm, she always seemed hard-wired to somewhere between 8&8.30 at most ages, and still is aged 4. I have to admit, they aren’t napping in their cots. They don’t sleep in them at night! We cosleep - when they first came back from SCBU they were insanely clingy and unsettled and would only sleep on my chest. Fortunately they settled down after a week or so, but we cosleep. Initially their weight was very low, so I was happy to be able to feed them every 2 hours during the night without having to totally wake up myself.
@ChampooPapi, wow 6oz a feed! They must be quite a bit bigger than my boys, mine are sick if they have more than 3oz, so we were advised little and often to build them up.
@Oly4 my DH is normally trying to catch up with work in the evenings as he takes the ear,y evening to be with our 4yo and getting her settled in bed, so I hand,e the twins on my own right now.
Wow, you guys have twins that sleep through??? Mine are still awake every sleep transition and usually feed for most of them (one twin always does, the other it’s 50:50)
I think you are doing brilliantly. Of course they are not napping in their cots. I have 3 kids and they only slept on walks or on me for naps for months.
Co-sleeping also sounds fine to me as long as it’s safe and just you in the bed. You have to do what gets you through.
They are tiny. Are they wanting to cluster feed by any chance between 8 and midnight? I think I would give up on the idea of routine, go to bed every evening with a box set and the twins and let them feed and sleep next to you til they finally settle.
It won’t be forever
Everyone is different but I found going with the flow far less stressful than trying to get tiny babies into a routine.
Your twins do sleep a lot during the day but they were prem, they have lots of catch up on
@crazychemist only one twin is on 6oz, the other smaller twin is still on 4oz at each feed.
So I really think if you don't allow them to sleep as much in that early evening time as well as putting them in their cots more (if they are very sleepy babies this shouldn't be too difficult, they dont have to go into them awake, just transfer them when they nod off on you) these things will help.
Five weeks is fairly early so softly softly routine wise I agree! Really just one thing at a time and I'd definitely find if I put mine in the buggy or car, or sling, they would sleep a lot more in the day too. So it is important to get them napping in their own 'space' in my opinion. They will them wake naturally when they are hungry, which means they will feed more as they arnt sleeping, stretching their stomachs so they can drink more at each feed. It's better for them to wake when they are ready not to be constantly rocked back to sleep by the buggy motion, you really will find you'll be feeding a lot more for a while though, which is good! They will thrive even more once they uptake more milk.
Going with the flow is best for a certain amount of time but having to leave the house to get them to sleep sounds a bit stressful too!