To ask how the fuck you do bedtime with a 5yo and a baby?
Merryoldgoat · 01/10/2018 21:05
I am trying to put my 5yo to bed. I sit with him until he’s asleep (usually takes 10-15 mins after bedtime story).
I also have a 7 month old who is a fucking demon.
Usually, my husband is home and one will do the 5yo and the other wrangles the baby.
Tonight he’s out and I’m trying to do it all alone. I’m basically on the verge of a breakdown.
The baby is resolutely wriggly - it’s like someone’s dosed him. Every time the 5yo is nearly sleeping he starts shouting. He’s just kicking me and flailing but won’t take his bottle at all. The 5yo is getting upset and overtired and frankly I’m totally over it.
To avoid dripfeeds:
My 5yo is Autistic - bedtime has been a challenge for years and we’ve gone from him refusing to sleep alone time sitting with him as he goes to sleep in the last few mo this so I’m not going to just leave him in there.
The baby will scream blue murder if I leave him. He doesn’t self soothe, amuse himself etc. He’s a Velcro baby and I think he might actually be sent from another dimension to kill me.
I am suffering with PND and I’m due on which is probably exacerbating things.
Sorry. I’m ranting. It’s all too much today.
ElizabethS22 · 01/10/2018 21:10
Sounds really tough on you.
I don’t know what to suggest for right now, but maybe think about sleep training your youngest when you’re both at home so he can learn to self settle. My son used to be the same so clingy wouldn’t settle himself but it really helped.
Hope you manage to get some rest yourself soon x
OoohSmooch · 01/10/2018 21:11
I can just about do it with a toddler on my own let alone two little people so you are already doing well! I don't have much advice but when I needed to do something else when my DD was smaller....it was all about distraction. Give the baby something to either watch on the tv or iPad (Baby Bum Nursery Rhymes or Peppa Pig!) or pop them in a jumperoo or give them books and new things to hold, spoons or random plastic (safe) kitchen utensils worked well for mine! Good luck!
DNAwrangler · 01/10/2018 21:14
Any chance of getting your five year old to listen to bed time / big boy CD while you get the baby to sleep?
Will the baby be any quieter in a sling?
Tumbleweed101 · 01/10/2018 21:17
What time does the baby go to bed? Is it possible to settle him first?
timeisnotaline · 01/10/2018 21:20
No advice but I feel for you! I have a baby and 3yo and doing nights on my own is awful. It’s just handle one, handle the other & repeat.
DNAwrangler · 01/10/2018 21:20
Failing all else, make a floor bed and all curl up together. Someone will fall asleep sooner or later. Possibly you...
PerditaNitt · 01/10/2018 21:23
I am watching with interest for tips because I have to do the same with my 3mo and my 2year old next week. Am planning to put the baby in the bouncer in the room with us while I do story time and bedtime with the older one (about 15 minutes routine). No idea if it will work.
Jumperoo might be a good one for the 7mo because it will tire them out they may fall asleep in it for a few mins while you focus on your older child. Do you have a play pen (baby jail) to safely keep the baby in the next room while you put your son to sleep. That way if the baby is crying it will be muted.
Stay as relaxed as the situation will allow (sorry, I’m not intending for this to sound patronising), this scenario would vex any superwoman and give yourself a huge treat when it is all over.
MadeForThis · 01/10/2018 21:24
I've only done bedtime alone with dd 3 and dd 9 months a couple of times.
I took both into toddlers room for storytime. Let baby crawl around on the floor while we read stories. Then white noise on and breastfed the baby while toddler tossed and turned.
They did totally distract each other. Toddler kept looking to see what baby was doing luckily baby quietly fed so toddler got bored and fell asleep. Took much longer than usual.
Did try storytime then telling toddler that I was putting baby to bed then would come back. Told her to keep looking at the book or to sing a song. Worked once. Didn't work second time.
I'm so thankful that DH is here at night to put toddler to bed. It's so stressful.
woollyjumperseason · 01/10/2018 21:25
Do you have a sling? i put my wee one in there whilst i put my 3 year old down. either sitting on the edge of the bed rocking side to side or sometimes pacing and singing lullabies (sp?)
Chosenbyyou · 01/10/2018 21:30
I do bed time on my own with 3.5yo and 17mo a lot and I HATE it!
Never goes well - I have done loads of combinations and I haven’t found anything that really works.
If I know the baby is tired I can leave the older one watching TV and try to put baby to sleep and keep checking on the older one - this doesn’t always work and can get me very stressed :(
It’s really hard I think and I dont have the answer
Merryoldgoat · 01/10/2018 21:32
Thank you all. I managed to convince my older DS to let me go and settle the baby and he fell asleep alone.
He does actually listen to audiobooks as he drifts off - I suspect in another 2/3 months he’ll be ok alone but rushing him will be too much for him.
DH has arrived home with some sweeties for me - he’s now holding the baby whilst I demolish a bag of Haribo.
This too shall pass, I know.
MrsHoodwink · 01/10/2018 21:32
I have no advice sorry but I have a 5yo and 2yo (autistic) in the same room so I know how you’re feeling and it’s awful
I often feel like my head might actually explode and many a night I’ve sat a cried on the stairs in frustration.
5yo went through a phase of waking the 2yo sneakily on purpose so that she didn’t have to go to sleep yet! I’ve never been so furious at a child in all my life
Here to handhold and watch for advice
StartingAgain1 · 01/10/2018 21:34
My routine for the past 2 months with 8mo and just turned 6yo is
6.30 baby - bottle in dark room, straight in cot with muslin for comfort
7.30 6yo story and bed
If baby is clingy will probably be really hard but I would start getting him in a routine with the aim of baby being in bed first. My baby is quite clingy, if he could glue himself to me he would!
About 2 months ago I had to get the baby in a bedtime routine as getting them to bed on my own was killing me. Baby didn't like it at first, you will need to persevere but now he just goes straight off.
villainousbroodmare · 01/10/2018 21:34
3yo and 4mo twins here. I've just started getting an evening babysitter as DH is working late. It's v difficult as none of them settle well for anyone else. I bf DT1 to sleep then read to DS while bf DT2 but it is far from foolproof.
ToffeePennie · 01/10/2018 21:34
That sounds tough.
I have always had a very firm and set bedtime routine, but I totally appreciate this wouldn’t happen with an autistic child. Mine are 4 and 11 months.
They both go in the bath at 5:30. Out by 6pm, having cleaned teeth and faces.
Out the bath, dried and dressed in big ones bedroom. Then at 6:05, I leave big one to play for a bit (usually toot toot) and choose a book, whilst I put baby down.
Baby has about 5 mins of boob, then a song, snuggles and into bed by 6:15.
Finally return to big one, off for a final wee, snuggle into his bed and have a bit of mummy cuddles (this is when he generally tells me if somethings happened at school etc) and then we read a story, have a song and snuggle down. Kiss on forehead, I leave and close the door by 6:30pm. He is not to leave his bed.
I’ve always done this because I have to, to avoid my pnd coming back. One of my triggers is not getting enough “us” time with dh and I can feel quite overwhelmed at bedtime with two of them, so a strict routine seems to work well for us.
I’m not saying this is the case for everyone, but for me, it definitely works.
babbscrabbs · 01/10/2018 21:36
Do you breastfeed? I used to shove baby on the boob to shut him up, didn't always work though (and he's now a massive boob addict and I can't wean him off! )
Merryoldgoat · 01/10/2018 21:39
Thank you all for the kindness - I honestly thought I was being useless 😔
ToffeePennie · 01/10/2018 21:42
You’re not useless, just an exhausted mum! It always amazes me just how much we endure for our children. You are doing fantastic!
Merryoldgoat · 01/10/2018 21:47
I don’t breastfeed but I took a bottle in which he totally refused and kept hitting out of my hand.
He’s a bit of a giant so he’s outgrown the Jumperoo and sling, however the bouncy chair with Little Baby Bum on the iPad could be an option.
I think trying to get the baby into a routine is probably the best idea but I find it hard.
Findingdotty · 01/10/2018 21:50
I second trying the audiobooks (won't help tonight unless you sign up to Audible online!). Might help in the long run. Also you can get the CDs from lots of different shops and the library for a small fee (40p for 3 weeks where I live).
Notquiterichenough · 01/10/2018 21:50
I always did the baby first (even if I had to go back to him later). So, bath both, leave older child playing/reading in his room, settle baby, then go back to older DC for bedtime.
They're 15 and 11 now, but I still say goodnight in this order!
NellWilsonsWhiteHair · 01/10/2018 21:53
Single parent to 6yo and 6mo. I still sit with the big one while he drifts off (like you, generally 10-15 mins after story). ATM I bf the baby through it which usually works but isn't perfect... I really want to get her to sleep in the cot first and then do 6yo's bedtime properly. But she totally hasn't got the hang of going to sleep in the cot yet!
My vision is that I'll bathe them both together (as we already do), and then instead of doing big one's bedtime routine with the little one in my arms (as we currently do), the big one can go and watch something suitably soothing on the telly for ~15 mins while I get the baby down in her cot and then I can go and do stories and sitting with the big one. I'd like to be leaving him to go to sleep on his own soonish, and I think he'll probably be ready soon (likely all the sooner for getting me to himself for the stories bit, I think).
The tricky bit of this plan is obviously the 'baby asleep alone in cot' bit! I need to set aside a week or so to teach her to do this at naptime, I think, while DS is at school. I am hopeful she'll be fairly amenable to it - she seems a bit Velcro-ish in comparison with lots of other babies, but much less so than DC1.
At the minute I am 100% relying on the sleep-inducing power of the boob, though, and I'm not sure what I would do without it. Very occasionally bedtime is a real tricky time for me but mostly we muddle through ok. I don't ever take it for granted though because when it's hard its indescribably tough. With a baby with a slightly more restless temperament it would be - well, not impossible because clearly it would still have to get done; but definitely the closest thing to impossible.
Merryoldgoat · 01/10/2018 21:54
I find the inconsistency of parenthood utterly souls destroying at times.
Some nights I’ve done this and it’s gone perfectly. No real difference tonight except the baby decided to be a little goblin.
DH is doing him overnight so I’ll hopefully get a decent night’s sleep at least.
seasidewitchtits · 01/10/2018 21:57
Oh @Merryoldgoat you sound v much like me. I was home alone with my autistic 4yo DS and clingy 4 month old baby all day, unable to leave the room without one or the other starting to cry. I also have PND - is it any wonder we both do?!
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