How does you toddler behave if you put them down for a nap they do not want to take?

User - posted on 02/18/2012 ( 6 moms have responded )

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Hi!!!



Bella's sleeping habits seem to change day to day at the moment ... am going with the flow - trying to read her cues, and give her what she needs



I get confused between overtired and not ready to nap!!!



She was rubbing her eyes today 3 hours after her 12 hour night sleep ...



she doesnt usually sleep 12 hours - so i did not plan to put her to bed until after an early lunch ...



but when she seemed tired, i put her in her crib after her bedtime routine - and she cried like i have never ever heard before ....



she then seems to cry SO easily at anything i tried to do with her - play, sing, read, tv - a few mins and she'd be crying again!!!



Any tips on how to read the difference between overtired and actually not wanting to nap!!!

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Chrystal - posted on 02/18/2012

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I have a mix of parent led and child led for my kids sleep. I choose their bedtime because I like us to eat dinner than give them a bath which leads to pjs and bedtime very easily. But they wake up when they are ready and they take naps when they need to. I found that they built their own basic schedule getting tired at about the same times everyday. I have a 3 sign rule meaning if they show me 3 signs they are tired in like 20 minutes then it's nap time. For my kids signs they are tired are red around the rims of their eyes, rubbing their eyes, yawns, and distant gazes (spacing out) while playing. If my daughter get past sleepy to overtired she gets cranky and just sits and cries. I can tell my son has gotten overtired when he gets super energetic I know the crash is coming within minutes. My son is 1.5 years old and he really only naps a few days a week at this point but we have 20 minute "rest" time in the afternoon to give him the chance to take a nap if he needs one. Your daughter could have just been having a bad day I know both my kids have those from time to time. She could have gotten to much sleep making her feel grouchy I can have that myself if I sleep to much at night or she may have still been tired. Unfortunately with little ones it can be hard to figure out what they need at times we do our best and that's all anyone can expect of themselves.

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Chrystal - posted on 02/18/2012

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If she is behaving that way outside the bedroom too when she doesn't get her way then yeah it's probably testing her limits and that's a whole different issue. If it's tantrums then 1) try to head them off 2) if you can't head it off then ignore it. If she is having a tantrum because of nap then maybe try not putting her down for naps for a few days see how she does it's not giving in to her and getting her out of the bed but just avoid the situation all together. If she clearly still needs her naps then you gotta give them to her as nasty as a tantrum might be. If you give in to the tantrums they will just keep getting worse. At first she will get A LOT worse she will put on as big of a show as she thinks she has to in order to get you to do what she wants until she realizes that it won't make a difference. You'll know the difference between a tantrum and something else by the fact that it stops as soon as you give in and in my kids cases if I watch them without them knowing they stop every so often to see if it's working.

Jenni - posted on 02/18/2012

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Dee, maybe she's coming down with something?



My daughter is pretty even tempered but even she occasionally gets a day like this since she was around a year old.



She's also always been an amazing napper/sleeper and really easy to get down but she does goes through phases here and there where she cries when I lay her down. More so the older she gets. I just go in and she quiets down and stands in her crib next to me until she eventually lays down again.



She got so persistent about it for a month it took me up to an hour to finally get her down. (This mostly occurred at bedtime not naps) It was definitely her testing boundaries and learning cause and effect because she was using her "fake cry" where she hollers and grins after you acknowledge her. I'd go in her room and she'd have tossed her sleep toy on the floor because she knew I'd have to go in and retrieve it for her. I'd get her down, leave the room, few minutes later she'd holler again for me to come in and get her toy. So it was a bit of game for her. I kept it quiet and my presence as little of an interruption as possible and eventually she grew bored with it when she realized I wasn't there to play. For the last 2 months she's been going down easy again.

User - posted on 02/18/2012

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Mums -



i would like to offer her those naps as i used to ... she used to be happy when i put her in the cot - she;d talk/play and sleep - or just talk/play and i would get her ...



today if i put her in her pjs ... she scrreamed ... if i put her in her cot she THREW HERSELF AROUND - i was so scared she'd hurt herself!



is this normal??? is she testing her boundries???



i called the doctor - they say she sounds healthy ... she is only crying when she isnt getting her way ... this is not like her???

Lydia - posted on 02/18/2012

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when my daughter switched from 2 naps to 1 nap she had different nap times everyday for like 2-3 weeks. some days she took one nap, sometimes still 2, sometimes earlier than usual, sometimes later.... it was annoying because before she had the same nap times everyday and than during the transition i couldn't plan anything because it was so unpredictable when she'd go for a nap. but after that it was regular again - just one nap.



well what i did during the transition time is just whenever she seemed tired i tried to put her down. sometimes she wasn't ready for a nap yet, so she was up and happy once i put her in bed. i rather tried to put her down to often, than have her become overtired to much.

Jenni - posted on 02/18/2012

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It *does* sound like being overtired. But if you are phasing out a nap there is a little bit of an adjustment period with some children. I also know that if I sleep in or sleep longer than usual I get pretty grouchy and feel tired for the rest of the day. So I imagine this happens to babies and children too. And sometimes there's just no avoiding a grouchy day (we all have them). Of course, you want to do everything you can to make her feel better as her mom. But I think sometimes it just is what it is. ;)



I used a child-led approach to naps. Of course, some parents use parent-led (or scheduling). But with my approach I noticed a difference in their napping for about 2 weeks and they began to phase out one nap for one big nap. I noticed their morning or afternoon nap was shorter and they often refused one all together. I'd say if you notice these changes in her napping for 2-4 weeks you can start transitioning her to 1 big nap.

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