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Ideas for my nearly 4 year old

(13 Posts)
tommypickles Sun 31-May-09 22:39:52

My son is nearly 4, about 2 weeks ago he woke in the night after a bad dream. So I let him in our bed. We couldn't sleep, not enough room so I ended up in his bed and he stayed with my husband. I didn't mand doing it as a one off but now he wants it every night and seems terrified to be in his room on his own. He has slept though the night since he was 10 weeks old, and we've had very few occasions when he's woken. All my kids ahve has very good sleep routines from tiny babies. Me and hubbby decided that enough is enough and he must go back to sleeping in his own room........well, my hubby sat with him tonight for about 2 hours tring to get him to sleep with no joy, so I took over and read story etc, still no good. We had decided that we'd leave him even if he cried. This was just awful, he was screaming at the stair gate, more upset than I've ever seen him before, stupid so called "supernanny" techneque!! I tried to put him back into bed again but he would just cling onto me and scream. We have tried telling him he'll get a much wanted new toy if he stays in bed and all sorts of other "bribes", nothing works. Like I say he's always been fine, I don't want to have to let him fall asleep somewhere else and carry him through or keep staying with him till he falls asleep cos they will then always wake wondering where they are or why you're not there. Sorry it's long, any ideas!!! Please!!!!!!!!

tommypickles Sun 31-May-09 22:42:48

PS my daughters are much older and at secondary school, hubby goes to work at 6am, so can't really allow him to scream at 3 or 4am with the others to consider.

CarGirl Sun 31-May-09 22:45:10

Can you put his mattress on the floor in your room for now. It sounds like he's just started having vivid nightmares and is genuinely very frightened.

tommypickles Sun 31-May-09 22:49:51

he is frightened, but he been with someone every night for 2 weeks!! how do we now get him back in his own room. I hate to do it to him, I really do, but you have to draw the line somewhere otherwise we'll end up with him in our room till he's 5!!!!!!!!!! Thought it would be easier to do it sooner rather than later grin

CarGirl Sun 31-May-09 22:53:16

Have you asked him what he's frightened of. It could be something in his room - the way the curtains hang, or a wardrobe or something?

tommypickles Sun 31-May-09 22:56:24

he says it's a "muddy monster". The dream on the first night was this thing that was on the ceiling in the corner that dripped mud onto him!! We've tried telling him that it's gone now and that it wasn't even real, just a bad dream etc, but he won't have it. So now we say that actually muddy monsters are nice and won't hurt him

CarGirl Sun 31-May-09 23:05:40

Rearrange the bedroom so his bed is somewhere else, get a different night light?

tommypickles Sun 31-May-09 23:08:47

I think that's what we will try next, a few new pictures on the walls etc. some things that he can choose to make him feel better about his room, didn't think of moving the bed though, good one.

Doodledoo Sun 31-May-09 23:09:51

Have you tried massage to get him to settle? Whenever my kids are unsettled / have bad dreams it is the only thing that works. I don't chat to them when I do it and don't really make much eye contact, but it just seems to soothe and settle them. I also use lavender oil on their pillows or on the soft toy they cuddle.

I can appreciate that it is hard working out how to deal with this one - I'd be inclined to stick v firmly to the muddy monster not being real and to help him understand what dreams are.

Sleeping habits are funny things. I sometimes think a break in routine - inviting a friend or cousin round to stay, a night away, whatever - can help knock things back into place.

Good luck.

tommypickles Sun 31-May-09 23:18:54

we've just been on holiday for a week and I too thought that would break the pattern and he would sleep as he used to once we got home, but no

tommypickles Mon 01-Jun-09 08:02:23

any idaes, anyone else.....bump

bubblagirl Mon 01-Jun-09 08:12:18

get him to help change his room about you can get night lights that turn into torches

sit with him by his bed when stories are done and no conversation just be there gradually move further away

tell him the torch is special that keeps all monsters away scare monsters out of room together before he goes to bed and then tell him if he wakes there will be no monsters it was just a dream

i would get the room changed get him to tell you where he would like something maybe get new duvet as well few accessories make it a bigger boys room brave boys room get a sticker night chart and he can stick a sticker on every night he stays in bed and gets a reward at the end of it

ignore the pleads to come into your room just give lots of praise for being in his own room and don't speak when after bed time just sit next to bed until asleep and then move away have his special big boys night light on etc

i cant be too much help my 4 yr old has ASD and night time separation anxiety so sleeps on bed in our room next to ours although always put him to bed in his bed but all these tips were given to me by sleep therapist

tommypickles Mon 01-Jun-09 21:33:54

bump

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