Managing sleep with TWO kids!

Corinne - posted on 02/08/2011 ( 11 moms have responded )

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Since my daughter will be two and a half when this baby comes...i was wondering how you guys managed your sleep with the second baby? My daughter does NOT nap anymore! I might get a nap from her if we are really busy one day or if she happens to wake up very early!! Im nervous how im going to survive the long days,until daddy gets home, without being able to take naps myself!

I might get lucky with a baby thats a very good sleeper but if shes anything like my first...I need to have a back up plan! Even after two years, my daughter is still a bad sleeper most nights and Im already feeling the strain and physical effects of pregnancy and being up constantly!

We tried a "schedule" and not giving her foods after a certain times, etc. Shes lactose intolerant so a lot of her cause of waking up is gas and sometimes bad dreams...

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Lissa - posted on 02/09/2011

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I don't know where you are but here in the UK we have a programme called Home Start where volunteers (usually with grown up children and spare time) help out families with young children that need support. My sister is a volunteer and I know a few people who have used it. They will come and help with anything from housework, days out or just letting new parents sleep. Maybe look in your area and see if there is something similar.

Elfrieda - posted on 02/08/2011

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A friend of mine has "quiet time" for her older kids while the younger one naps. They are not allowed to get out of their beds for the specified amount of time, but they have colouring books and other quiet things in bed with them in case they don't want to sleep.
She napped or just had alone time during "quiet time". It sounded like a good plan to me.

Melissa - posted on 02/08/2011

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your first is old enough to still have time by herself if you want to sleep infact my child nurse and otehr people I know with 4 kids say its vital at least an hour put them in their room shut the door and if they dont sleep they can play. My dauhter is not much older then that and when the baby is sleeping I lay on the couch and rest I fall asleep for a few minutes here and there but she does bug the hell out of me lol. I would still put her down for rest time. Or have you thought about putting your eldest in daycare mine goes to daycare 2 days a week for about 4-6 hours. Helps me alot. It was orignally just for her to interact with other kids but since i have my second daughter its a god sent

Katherine - posted on 02/08/2011

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I have a 23mo that still doesn't sleep through the night and when she was a newborn my other one was 3.5

She didn't sleep throught the night.



The minute my husband got home I went to bed.

Try to do quiet things with your 2.5yo during the day. Maybe this baby will be a great sleeper!!!

Even so, you will still need sleep.

Can you get a babysitter for your older one for a couple of hours a day?

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Lissa - posted on 02/09/2011

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@ Katherine, Whether it's just needing someone to talk to or practical help it really supports families, especially these days when many people don't live near their own families.

Louise - posted on 02/09/2011

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Don't worry to much about your sleep pattern your daughter will be as sleep deprived as you are and will sleep more soundly once the baby is born. I agree with katherine though enlist as much help as possible from friends and family to take care of your eldest child so you can sleep.

I also had a routine with my husband that he would get up on a Friday night and Saturday night to do the feeds so that I could have two nights full sleep a week. This worked very well and as my sons got older my husband would get up on a saturday with the kids and I would on a sunday it is all about team work.

Corinne - posted on 02/08/2011

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my hubby is military so i understand the deployment, late nights, field time, cq, and all that!

i have done the laying her in her bed for an hour or so, when shes really being aweful! ill definitely make that more of a habit now! if i take her to a daycare that we can afford, it requires a 40 minute drive to base and gas is beyond insane right now and only getting worse! she also screams the entire time i am gone! i tried the free hourly care, when my hubby was deployed, and she screamed as soon as my hand hit the door until i picked her up and put her in the car! she does well with my friends so i may take them up on baby sitting duty more!

ty everyone for the advice!

Medic - posted on 02/08/2011

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My son was 3 when his sister now 1 was born. What saved me because my husband left for military training when the baby was 6 days old was that my son went to 3K 2 days a week so those days I napped when the baby napped. I didn't have a husband coming home to give me a break. During the day when both kids were home when the baby napped my son either had to lay down with me and watch tv or read. While he did that I slept in the bed next to him and he knew to wake me up if he needed anything. My son has always had an early bedtime so I would feed the baby and lay her down 30 min before his bedtime. That way I got to spend some one on one time with him then when he went to bed I went to bed and woke up accordingly to feed the baby. If you stop looking at how hard it will be it wont be that bad. I have been on my own more with my kids than their dad has even been in the states. You just get a routine that works and stick to it. Sometimes if I thought I was the walking dead I would call a friend to come and sit with the kids for a few hours while I passed out, or to go out to lunch with all of us.

Corinne - posted on 02/08/2011

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my mother in law is a two hour drive away and helps out when she can but isnt always available! we see her maybe once a month! i have friends that are more than willing to help but most of them do not have a second car and therefore cannot come out and help me during the day!

Katherine - posted on 02/08/2011

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Get all the help you can!!!!

If someone can come over, let them let you sleep.

Forget the housework, and laundry for a minute and get ready to ask for help.

Hopefully you have family nearby.

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