Need help with stopping the nap wars!

ANIA - posted on 05/25/2010 ( 27 moms have responded )

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My 2.5 year old won't nap during the day even though she is tired, than she will fall asleep on the floor an hour or more before her bed time!! Please help.

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Natasha - posted on 08/18/2012

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my son is 21 months and since he turned 18 months hes got worse and worse with naps. Now im lucky if he gets an hour and thats after 2 pm and me drivjng round and round. Thats THE only place hel fall asleep and only if hes exausted! its so fustrating but nothing works hel cry for 30 mins in his cot then start talking away and will never fall asleep. :( anyone have the same problem?

Brandy - posted on 06/07/2010

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My son tried the no nap trick when he was 18 months and I wouldn't have it. I was also in my first trimester with number 2 and working 30 hrs a week while my husband was doing his military training. He had no choice, it wasn't pretty for him or ,e if we didn't get our nap. What helped us was explaining to him what we where going to do after lunch. For example I would tell him after lunch you can play for 15 min then you can pick out 2 books and I will read them 2x to you then you can quietly lay here and read for 3 min (I set the timer on my phone). When the timer goes off i tell him time is up and the books go away. This also works really good at night but we use a flashlight to read the story and usually after the 3 min hes ready to turn the light out anyway. I know each child is different and this is what works for us. Good luck.

Jen - posted on 05/25/2010

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My daughter is 2.5 and doesn't always take a nap. However, she has to lie down in her bed for 2 hours. She goes to day care during the week and has to stay on her mat even if she doesn't sleep. She sleeps 12-13 hours a night so as long as she has a rest period I'm fine with her not taking a nap everyday.

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Alice - posted on 06/09/2010

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My son goes through phases of not wanting to nap and when i put him upstairs in his cot he will scream blue murder. At the moment he is fairly good at going for his nap and he will sleep from about 2.30pm till 4.30. I will not let him sleep past 4.30 as it becomes difficult to get him to bed in the evening.

I always make sure we have done something during the morning which is both mentally and physically tiring this assures me he will be tired enough for a nap later. I found that if he was in the downstairs part of the house prior to being taken up to bed he didnt want to go to sleep for fear of missing out on something! So if we're out in the car or pushchair i come home and take him straight upstairs and put him straight down with a biscuit and a juice cup and his dummy put his cot mobile on and leave the room. 99.9% of the time he goes to sleep. If im at home i will take him for a short walk to the local shop for some milk or something and then bring him home and take him straight up to bed. As long as i DO NOT let him in to the living area of the house he will sleep. Its strange but trust me I have had trouble with him sleeping in his cot at nap times ever since he was born and the last 4 months or so he's been great. (touch some wood quick!)

Joanne - posted on 06/07/2010

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My 2.5 yr old son is exactly the same. He hasn't taken a day nap since he was around 17 or 18 months! He is also a live wire so you can imagine how exhaused he is by 6 or 7pm at night. I take him to the park and let him run free in the mornings, but I rely totally and utterly on our quiet time around 2pm when I get cosy with him on the couch, blankets and pillows, dummy and watch a dvd with him. It means he takes an hour at least to rest and it recharges his batteries until bed time which is 7.30 or so. Watching dvd's is a godsend and I would have a crying, naughty out of control toddler if he didn't rest int he afternoons. I set the environment to encourage sleep but these days he never falls asleep. He takes 11 to 12 hours a night and to me it is as if it is just him......he takes what he needs. I have gotten to know what works for him due to his refusal of daytime naps, and I always make sure I don't head out in the afternoon, making sure I am able to provide him with that quiet rest time. Occasionally if I have been out in the afternoon he will fall asleep in the car at 5pm, but then I keep him awake by talking to him because if I let him sleep that late he wouldn't go to bed at night until midnight which is impossible for us as we're too tired to stay up that late! Toby seems to do well as long as he has his rest time in the afternoons, some children don't take day naps, I have tried everything......and I accept that they are all different ..so I go along with it and now we have a good routine. This way he goes to bed earlier and sleeps through, so it's fine. I make sure he is toileted and teeth brushed by 6.30pm so that if he passes out early he can be put straight to bed....but he doesn't, he often doesn't sleep until 8pm even though he doesn't sleep during the day! He is an incredibly active little boy, and day naps just don't interest him even when I try to set the mood for sleep! My situation suits me, but I hope you can adapt to your daughters situation too and I hope it all works out with you. good luck!

Catherine - posted on 06/07/2010

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Only one of my 4 girls kept her nap past 2.5 - 3 years of age. Our youngest, currently 3.5 loves playing the Simpsons on the X-Box. I'm not advocating this game particularly, just if you can find something they love doing enough to keep themselves awake right at that time, it can be worth letting them do it, even if it's not something you'd normally put in their routine right then. I personally don't like being awake at 10 p.m. (and later) because she's decided to drop off at the wrong time.

Anka - posted on 06/07/2010

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Danielle, I feel your pain. I am in the exact situation with my daughter. She refuses to sleep in the afternoon and I have also given up trying. some afternoons are better than others, the one day she's happy not at all cranky and the other afternoon she's soo tired, but refuses to lie down. I have to either go for a drive with the car or carry her around on my hip till she falls asleep, and then I may not sit down with her, I must stand or walk. I refuse to walk or drive her asleep every afternoon. So now I take each day as it comes. If she wants to nap she can nap, and if she doesnt then I move her whole eat, bath, sleep routine a hour or so forward. the problem comes in when she's so tired early in the pm but refuses to nap, she'll be throwing tantrums, and upsets herself more by the minute. It just helps to know that somewhere out there someone else has the same problem, and you are not alone. Unfortunately there are no magic steps to follow, and each child is different. what works for the one, doesn't necessarily work for another.

Claire - posted on 06/06/2010

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I make a deal with my son. Tell him the fun things were going to do when he wakes up. Drawing, playing outside, watching a dvd etc
:-) he was just feeling like he was missing out on something if he went to bed

Christine - posted on 06/03/2010

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Luckily my son hasn't given up his naps yet but I do sympathize with you - on the days when he forgoes a nap he is FERAL!! I don't know about you but everything these days seems to be a negotiation. I either say, 'no nap no Roary (favourite TV show) or I explain why he needs to sleep because we are doing this or so and so is coming over to see you etc and you need to be well rested. I take him to his room at 130pm and close the door. It's up to him to nap or have some quiet time which eventually results in him having a nap anyway. Alternatively we also put him to bed an hour earlier if he doesn't sleep during the day. I wouldn't let her sleep for an hour or more so late in the day. Perhaps 15-20 mins (cat nap) instead. Good luck!

Danielle - posted on 06/03/2010

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To be honest, I'm slowly giving up here. I recently started babysitting a newborn in our home, and my daughter, who hated naps before, absolutely REFUSES. But the thing is, I know she needs one. She gets to 6 or 7 at night and falls asleep on her dinner plate half the time. She'll scream if I try to put her in her room or lay her down, and won't stop screaming. But she walks around, eyes half closed and rubbing them, falling and stumbling like she's drunk. But there's no forcing her, no coaxing her, she hates quiet time and climbs over her gates now if she's stuck in a room and doesn't want to be there. So, I guess my answers isn't helpful to you, aside from letting you know that I feel your pain. My daughter NEEDS a nap and doesn't function without it, but I've tried for months now to get her to take one, and it just doesn't happen, practically ever. So I'm not even trying anymore. She'll fall asleep whenever. And hey, I won't argue with an earlier bed time as long as she doesn't get up earlier.

Norine - posted on 06/03/2010

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Nap is NOT an option!!! Even when Amanda is home with me from preschool we still go down for nap around 12 noon not later then 1pm. All tv's, radios books go away so that we can take a nap. I also take advantage of that time I nap with her because I only get 4 hours asleep at night. So we must nap.

Kelly - posted on 06/03/2010

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have you tried moving up her bed time? i'm glad i'm not the only mommy to let their kids take naps. some people i know are for naps and others think it should be cut right out. i know when my little one is tired and i at leat insist she has quiet time she usually falls asleep.LOL

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I make sure my little one gets mommy time or outside time for a bit to help wear her down. If that doesn't work then I change the tv over to one of my shows and that always puts her to sleep :)

Joanne - posted on 05/28/2010

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The only way I can get my 2 year old to take a nap is to put her in the buggy and walk with her. Sometimes she'll sleep in the car if we're out and about but that's only at the weekend as Dad has the car during the week. However, if she takes a nap for more than 45 minutes during the day she won't go to bed until 10:30 or 11:00pm so it's a little exhausting. I would love if she were one of those kids that I could tell to have "quiet time" but she absolutely won't stay in bed unless I sit down beside the bed and physically hold her there which I am not prepared to do. So maybe you could try the walking her in the buggy if you have the opportunity to do that.

Shirlenda - posted on 05/28/2010

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My daughter is like that as well.She doesn't take naps anymore when she's at home and its like she has a burst of energy all day long even when she is sleepy,she good at fighting her sleep.

Diane - posted on 05/28/2010

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My son just turned 2 and has stoped taking naps for about 6 months..he goes to bed at 11pm and gets up at 11am..I wont let him sleep past 5pm if he does want to nap..it works out great for us. Some kids dont like to take naps.

Corrine - posted on 05/27/2010

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I have found that the more exercise they have in the morning the easier it is for them to do the day nap. Otherwise you can change their daily routine one hour earlier (depending on the time they wake up in the morning) - e.g. waking them up one hour earlier in the morning, etc. Or if they do fall asleep too late in the day, wake them up after 30-40 mins, and bathe/feed them dinner, put them to bed one hour earlier. Toddlers are really stubborn so persist.

Stacey - posted on 05/27/2010

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my 3 yr old is like that she goes to daycare during the week so most of the time she has to take a nap or at least stay on her cot but now at home we have a rutine that after lunch its time to read a book and lay down i read to her and then i will either lay on the bed with her for few til she falls asleep or i will let her have a baby and tell her ill be back to check on her and most of the time she is out!! good luck on yours cause it took me awhile to get her to do that

Jaime - posted on 05/27/2010

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Boy are you all lucky. I have a 5 & 3 year old and the 3 year old stop napping when he turned 2. But they will sleep in the car most to all the time.

Lee Ann - posted on 05/26/2010

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my daughter began to o the same thing, she would run wild though out the day and pass up nap time but about an hour before she usually passes out she would fall asleep, & i know this might sound crazy but this works for us, we don't let her go to sleep, we will keep her up & awake till its time for her to go to bed, yes shes mad & crying, but it lets her know when her bed time is & keeps her on a sched. usually she will skip naps some days & its a fight at times to get her to take them but like i said we will keep her up until her bedtime if she misses her nap.....good luck

Ashley - posted on 05/26/2010

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I also use quiet time as well. My son has to have 30 mins of quiet time, no talking and no sittingup lol. he usually stays down the full 30 mins and it sometimes leads to sleep if I am lucky. If not the rest gives him teh energy to make it to bed time!

Jane - posted on 05/26/2010

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my son is like that, i just say to him, can you have soem quiet time in your room please, get them to read picture books in bed, 9 times out of 10 you will check back and they are fast asleep ;)

Alba - posted on 05/25/2010

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my daughter is 5 and she still takes a 2.5 hrs nap. At the age of 3 she started giving me a hard time about taking a nap so what I did was I would lay her down on her bed and wouldn't let her watch tv until she would nap and ever since she knows when to go up to take a nap.

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