2 year old not napping!!

Amy - posted on 03/28/2011 ( 7 moms have responded )

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My daughter (2 yrs) has stopped taking naps for us on the weekends. She does well with quiet times/nap during the week at daycare and even though we have a similar routine at home, she will fight it by stripping down naked in her bed or getting in/out of bed. We have tried taking all of the books off of her floor (that's why she gets out), tried closing the door or having it open, tried putting shorts on her for quiet time (to put a stop to her naked strip downs) but nothing has helped! She is completely exhausted (rubs her eyes, dozes off as she eats etc) by the end of lunch but will NOT let herself succumb to a nap! This is getting out of hand, and both my husband and I are at a complete loss of what type of strategy to try next. I was almost to the point of resorting to putting in a video or kids tv for her to watch to fall asleep to, but I'm glad I didn't (we do not let our kids watch tv or movies at all let alone to fall asleep - I'm sure that would lead to a disaster come bedtime when trying to get her to sleep).

Your feedback is greatly appreciated - hopefully someone has a new strategy for me (other than driving around in the car - she needs to go to sleep in her bed just as well as she does at bedtime, so the car defeats that purpose).



Thanks :)

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Elizabeth - posted on 03/29/2011

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My thinking is that around this age, as with both of my daughters, they get wise to the fact that life doesn't stop because they are napping. They realize that they are missing out on things and at this age ..I am sure you have noticed...they are incredibly curious about EVERYTHING.



What we did with both of our children was stuck to our guns. If they didn't want to sleep it was okay with us but we needed a break from them just as they need a break from us. We continued putting them in their room for nap times. Once they realized that it didn't matter how many times they tried leaving the room ..they were going back..they gave up. Nap times eventually returned to normal.



I assume that it doesn't matter if she stays dressed as long as she keeps a diaper on...put it on backwards...if that doesn't work duct tape on...or put a onsie over it backwards.



Good luck!

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Elizabeth - posted on 03/29/2011

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We are having our 3rd daughter soon too. Due June 1st really close to your new baby.

To me it sounds like you are doing everything right..and by right I mean ..the way I would LOL

Keep doing what you are and things will change. In 3 months you will have new challenges and probably won't even remember this as being a problem.

Amy - posted on 03/29/2011

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LOL Elizabeth! You're right, it's not a problem if she wants to strip down and be naked (no diaper as she's been potty trained since 15 months). We've both just basically ignored it since we know she is looking for the reaction from us. I don't like the thought of her doing that at daycare, but if she does, well then our daycare will handle it the same way.



I completely agree with you about being consistent and my hubby and I are on the same page with how important that is.



You're right, she (like others her age) is very curious about everything and doesn't want to miss out, but the problem lies in the fact that she needs to sleep because she's so overly sensitive and exhausted by 5 or 6pm, that she just doesn't know what to do with herself (and we don't know how to help her other than encourage her to sleep and explain how it would make her feel better). Even with a couple hours of us reading books together in bed, it doesn't seem to help rejuvenate her like sleep does, so the whole lying down for quiet play doesn't work either.



I guess for now we'll just keep trying as we have been and hope for the best. My plan for when I am on mat leave with my next (May) is to possibly take them out for a walk at nap time so that my oldest can get some sleep rather than none - I hate to do that because then I don't get a break or rest, but if it will keep her from feeling so awful by early evening, then I feel obligated to try it.



Thanks for your comments :)

Amy - posted on 03/29/2011

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Thanks for your opinions :) However, my opinion differs and from things I've read (and agree with), babies/toddlers need to establish an understanding of the difference between night and day (my research has said to do this by having naps in daylight so they do not oversleep, then dark for night so they know it is time to sleep longer). I really like your idea about the light though, and seeing that my daughter loves stars I think she could get into this. I'm going to look into it. Thanks for your feedback.

Amy - posted on 03/28/2011

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Not sure. for naps we always have dark curtains drawn and not much light in. It's like a cue for bodies to calm down and get in sleep mode. Maybe if it's too bright your little one sees way too much to do. ?? Most young ones - unless they are the rare "fall asleep anywhere" child - need it darker to calm for sleep. Does yours nap in their bedroom?

Amy - posted on 03/28/2011

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Thanks for the suggestions, Amy. Would the light work in the daytime? We don't dim the lights for her during nap, never have, so if it would work in the daylight, then that's a definite possibility.

Amy - posted on 03/28/2011

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Mine stopped for a while around 2 - due to teething and that wonderful growing independence! :) We got one of those nightlights that project stars on the ceiling. I told my daughter she didn't have to sleep, just stay quiet and look at her stars. I even put some soothing classical on for her. I told her when the music stopped, she could get up.

Husband said it was tricking, but I told her she could close her eyes only if she was going to keep her ears open wide to hear when the music stopped. Naps started up again.

Or if time allowed, I'd lay down with her and set a timer downstairs and when it went off, I got up. If she heard it and was awake, she got up too, if not, I just crept out and let her sleep.

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