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My 2 1/2 year old Nighttime Nightmare!

1 answers
So...I've read alot of articles on how to get your child to sleep in their own bed, in their OWN ROOM...but here's my issue: How does one get their child to sleep in their own bed, when the child's bed is in the parents' room?! This situation is difficult, to say the least...no, I take that back...it's impossible! My boyfriend and I had lived in a 2 bedroom house for over 5 years with our 2 older boys(his boy and my boy). Neither of us had issues with our older boys when they were toddlers wanting to sleep in our bed all night, but we do now! Our 2 1/2 year old son sleeps all night in our bed. And by all night I mean he falls asleep in it, and he wakes up in it. He had a normal progression from bassinet to crib...but that's where things started going wrong. He would wake up in the middle of the night, and cry and cry, jumping up and down, and rattling the bars. We tried letting him "cry it out," but I'm not even kidding when I say that the only time that worked, he screamed for over an hour. I felt that was harsh and excessive. My boyfriend started taking him into our bed insisting he feels "comfortable and safe." Well, that's wonderful, but we're not comfortable at all! And, btw, I don't think I need to point out that with a small child between us, there is NO intimacy before. None. It has actually been detrimental to our relationship. Physical contact is important in every relationship, even if it's just holding hands as you fall asleep and we don't even have that luxury. So, we got him a toddler bed hoping it would make him feel more like he was sleeping in a "real bed" but to no avail, he started out the night for 2 weeks in that bed, and then suddenly refused to even get in it to fall asleep anymore. Most experts would say, "Take him back to his room and keep putting him in his bed until he gets tired of fighting and gets the point." However, like I said, we only have 2 bedrooms. With a 7 and a 10 year old and all their stuff in one bedroom, and us in the other, the only space for a toddler bed we had was in our room. Now, if we put him back in his bed and he starts screaming, it's not like he's in another room and the sound is not affecting other people in the house. I even move him after he's fallen asleep when we're ready to go to bed, and as soon as his body hits that mattress, he's awake and crying to go back into bed with us, keeping me awake all night with little kicks and jabs. I don't quite know what to do anymore...his pediatrician told me he'd grow out of it, family beds are wonderful for a child's self esteem, but guess what...they're not so great for mine! If anyone has any advice out there for this tired, achey, bruised mom, it would be much appreciated!

answers (1)

i have a 3 year old and a 2 year old. i SO UNDERSTAND that bedtime can be a nightmare! both of mine slept in our bed as babies and the 2 year old still does, well, now they both do. here's the situation: we only have a king bed and a queen bed. at 2 1/2 the older one was moved into her own room with queen bed. she did ok, but would wake up in the middle of the night sometimes and join us. the younger started wanting to sleep with the older, so i moved the king into "their" room and queen into ours. they go to bed together, and later when i go to sleep i join them(i do this so when the older wakes up she will just stay in bed, cuz im there). my hubby sleeps on the queen most nights, though sometimes he joins us in the king. is this disfunctional or what! LOL and the 3 year old puts up a HUGE fight when its bedtime. i started playing lullabyes in their room, which helps the older one go right to sleep, but keeps the younger awake. you might want to try that. also i have a bedtime chart with pictures of each of the steps in our bedtime routine (bath, brush teeth, prayer, read book, sleep) and a chart below for each kid. for every night they go to sleep having followed the steps and with minimal fussing, they get a sticker. everytime they get 3 stickers they get a special suprise, like i paint their toenails or they help me make cookies or something (you could get dollar store prizes too). this is motivation, especially for the 3 year old. we are about to move and i keep telling myself that then i will get them their own beds and they will sleep in their own room without mommy. i dread going thru it, but i know it is a neccessity. in the meantime, my hubby and i try to get alone time whenever we can, mostly while the kids are in bed and we are downstairs. when you have kids, you have to be creative about your sex life, wherever will do, the garage, the car, the living room floor. if you can go on dates, do it - we dont bc we dont use babysitters for our kids but that is a personal choice - if you have the opportunity to go out alone YOU SHOULD DO IT! also make sure he is really tired, but not overtired, when putting him to bed. daily excercise and fresh air help with this. and bedtime routine is key. it really makes a difference, so stick to it everynight. it will take about 2-3 weeks of being consistent to make it happen, but if you stay with it, he'll learn. with some babies, 'crying it out' just doesnt work. my youngest is like that. with her i just have to be firm, and keep checking on her. but some babies only get more upset if you check on them. its so hard to get it right, trust me, i understand. all we can do is keep trying. good luck to you!

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