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Sleep? How do we get more sleep?

On the plus side, a couple of nights away with work, being full of cold have meant that Mr Muddling has had to take some of the night time load. Sadly though I still have to get up because he doesn’t seem to be able to deal with both and well, he isn’t able to breastfeed the littlest one. But at least he now knows just how rubbish things can be at night.

Where we seem to have got ourselves to is that Big is waking around 4 and crying out for Mummy and / or Daddy and refusing to go back to sleep unless you sleep in bed with her (oh yes, the delights of a single bed half filled with toys, a wriggly toddler and an adult trying desperately not to fall out or get hyperthermia). End result is that she either ends up with us or we end up with her. Not exactly ideal.

The Littlest One has been a much better sleeper these last few months but is now teething – typically she’s decided to do all 4 top teeth in a rush and we’re three down in the last two weeks with another visibly on the way. All of this is not helped by my inability to remember to give her calpol in the middle of the night.

So long story short, how do I persuade the Big One to stay in her bed all night? How do we get back to them both sleeping again?

With Big do I have to go back to the battle we had about 6 months ago of not letting her out of her bed, not staying and just going in, cuddling and muttering ‘its night night time, sleep well’?

Is there something more underlying this? Is she having more separation anxiety because she’s at nursery? Is this tied into me not being around so much?

With Little do we just need to let her get through the teething and hope it’ll all be ok on the other side?

Is there a magic wand someone can wave and get this to work please.

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11 comments to Sleep? How do we get more sleep?

  • SeaThreePeeO

    >When to learn the secrets to a full night's sleep. Let me know.

  • isadori

    >Oh God, the teeth. My boy has had 6 come through over the last 3 weeks and now has 4 more on the way – aaargh! People say it's good to get them over and done with in one go but I disagree – it's hell. We've noticed that nurofen seems to work better than calpol and FWIW I always forget to give another dose in the night – why is that when I'd do anything to get him back to sleep?!

    No idea what you do with your eldest – I've not reached that delightful problem yet. Good luck though and hope you get some sleep soon…

  • TheMadHouse

    >I think a full nights sleep is an urban myth. I am still longing and looking for it and yes mine and 4 and 5, I am sure someone will remind me when they are surly teenagers who never get out of bed though!

  • PantsWithNames

    >No idea – not sure how we are going to cope with the nightly shenanigans and bed swopping activities when the new one arrives either. Do let meknow what works for you though – please?!x

  • rockinloubylou

    >I'm afraid I gave up but then again, I am now getting a proper night's sleep so who cares! Last week, fed up with broken nights during which I invariably ended up in a hunched knot on the edge of my 5 year old daughter's single bed, I bought her a double bed. I still try to settle her, and sometimes it works, but now if I give up in the middle of the night and join her it's a pleasant experience and i can actually function the next day. Hope I'm not still there when she's 15 though.

  • mummywhisperer

    >They will sleep, I promise: you'll be dragging them out if bed when they are teenagers!

    So if you weren't worrying about the social suggestion that children should be able to sleep in their own bed, what would you do?
    Is it a 'Need' for Big or 'Want', I do recommend meeting Needs where possible, unless it leads to throwing children out of the window! Does she feel worried?

    Hows about one of these ideas:
    – giving her a double bed, so you can sleep easily with her?
    – giving her a roll down bed to go next to yours (she comes in and pops herself on the floor next to you)
    – Or good old bribery, stars and the offer of a toy after 2 fab weeks of sleep

    Little dimples has those top teeth coming through too, which means that for comfort she wants to stroke my boob ALL NIGHT ARGGGHHH, it's like some weird torture :o(

  • mummywhisperer

    >They will sleep, I promise: you'll be dragging them out if bed when they are teenagers!

    So if you weren't worrying about the social suggestion that children should be able to sleep in their own bed, what would you do?
    Is it a 'Need' for Big or 'Want', I do recommend meeting Needs where possible, unless it leads to throwing children out of the window! Does she feel worried?

    Hows about one of these ideas:
    – giving her a double bed, so you can sleep easily with her?
    – giving her a roll down bed to go next to yours (she comes in and pops herself on the floor next to you)
    – Or good old bribery, stars and the offer of a toy after 2 fab weeks of sleep

    Little dimples has those top teeth coming through too, which means that for comfort she wants to stroke my boob ALL NIGHT ARGGGHHH, it's like some weird torture :o(

  • cartside

    >Cubling used to come through and sleep with us, now she comes through to go to the toilet (though she can go all night without, so it's still partly wanting to be with us). She was in our bed a lot but stopped when we explained that she moved too much and neither of us was getting good sleep. Reasoning worked, and our rule now is that she only comes through if scared or if needing the toilet. She still comes through most nights, but is happy to settle in her own bed without any fuss and that to me is totally ok.

    We had a similar situation where she wouldn't fall asleep in her bed without me there. One night, I said that I really needed the toilet (which was true), and she accepted me leaving. From then on, it was the secret code to me leaving her room, and magically she fell asleep all by herself. Sometimes a good reason that they understand can work wonders.

    I really hope you'll get a good night's sleep soon!

  • scribblingmum

    >Hiya how was last night? Hope it was do-able. It's such a grim, hard place to be, you have my sympathy. But it WILL pass, you know that, it's just about getting through it isn't it?!

    I have a different view from those above, pretty strict I guess. And that is to go with routine and consistency and help them learn how to sleep through again, you know they can do it so that's a huge positive, it's about re-training isn't it. As you mentioned above, I agree and think this is best done by not making a fuss, not letting them get into your bed, walking back through to their bed and I reckon you'd crack it in a week or so if you can both manage to stick to it. Obviously then it's about the whole praise thing, showering with stickers or whatever is her thing!

    I am a nightmare with no sleep, we all are as a family so have had to do this god knows how many times but I am pretty strict with it. I truly believe they need this structure when it comes to sleep.

    I'd choose to start on a night when you've got your hubby there too, both agree a plan of action and help each other stick to it. If you think she's genuinely struggling because of nursery buy a cheap night light from Ikea or a new cuddle toy to keep her company.

    Whatever you decide, it needs to be right for you. Advice is all well and good from people but it has to be right for you all. I hope you find the one that works for you, take it easy x

    ps as for forgetting calpol, yeah been there too, write a post-it if you have to above the cot !!

  • Mwa

    >Consistency is the only thing that works, but if you do you will probably have quite a few nights of wailing and complaining ahead.

    Good luck!

  • Whimsical Wife

    >Hmmm more sleep?!?!?! what's that then lovely?

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