Desperate to get my 2-year-old sleeping in his own bed! Help?

Sam - posted on 03/10/2011 ( 3 moms have responded )

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I don't even know where to start...

For starters, my son has never been a good sleeper. I breast fed for six months, and everyone told me not to fall asleep with him in bed, but he would be up 4-5 times a night for the entirety of that six months, and the ONLY way to get him back to bed was to feed him, and come on, a girl's gotta sleep some time! I couldn't help but fall alseep, and of course he got used to our nice warm bed...



When I switched him to formula, I also moved him to his crib. I tried for 6 months with no success to get him to sleep through the night. Around his first birthday, our family was getting ready to move to Japan, so we moved in with my grandmother for about a month, and out of convenience, my husband and I let him sleep in our bed, and voila! he was suddenly sleeping all night.



Soon after we moved, I got pregnant with our second child, and after several attempts to get our son sleeping in his own bed, whether he falls asleep in his own bed or not, he always wanders in before morning. His bed time before baby sister got here was 10(yes, late. I know. But he'd be up by 7...). After she arrived, bed time became a fiasco. With my husband leaving at 9 for work, I have to get both of the kids to bed, and my daughter is much easier to get to sleep, so I put her down first. If I'm lucky, he's asleep by 11! He's still up by 8, and I feel he's really not getting enough sleep, but I really don't know how to approach this issue....



(Our now 3-month-old is sleeping in her own room wonderfully. I get up once a night to feed her. It's like some sort of miracle to me.)



Advice?

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Louise - posted on 03/10/2011

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At two your son is old enough to understand what you are saying to him so start the day by saying that he is a big boy now and he needs to sleep in his bed all night. Your problem I think is the lack of a consistant routine for him. At 2 he should be in bed by 8pm and not still up at 10. Try and structure his day by letting him sleep if he needs to once a day at lunch time for an hour and a half then wake him. At 7.30pm bath him read him a story and put him to bed. At first he will not settle straight away but as long as he is not screaming the place down then leave him. Try and stick to the same routine every night and if he should get up take him back to his bed every time (I know you are knackered but it is for his own good). When he understands that you are going to take him back to his room he will eventually stop getting up. It is a battle of who will crack first so be prepared.

Just remember a child of two needs 13 hours of sleep a day, so if he takes long naps in the day he will sleep for less at night. Try the new regime and gain back some adult time with your husband and regain your bedroom. It will be a battle but well worth fighting for. Good luck!

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Kat - posted on 03/13/2011

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We have a very strict routine at night times, My son has his bath between 5:30 and 6, He comes out gets dressed and by 6:30 we are having dinner, Then after dinner which usually takes him 30-40mins, its upto his room to pick his toys up and read and he is asleep between 7:30 and 8. When I first moved him to his own room after 18months of being in my bed I had dramas he would scream and throw tantrums but we stuck through it, Took a couple of weeks but he soon learned I didnt give in no matter what, Since then (now 3and a bit) he has only slept in my bed 1 night, I know this sounds nasty but we put a small wooden gate up on our bedroom door to stop him trying to come into our room, and most nights if he woke up and tried he would go back to his bed once he realised he couldnt come into ours. It just takes alot of patience and persistence.

Sam - posted on 03/10/2011

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I will have to try shortening his naps. Right now he usually sleeps right around 2 hours after lunch.

I absolutely agree with you about our routine, or lack there of. Fortunately, now that our daugher is on a regular sleeping schedule, I think working him out a new routine would be much easier at this point. And I should rephrase; his bedtime was 9, but he would usually not be asleep until 10.

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