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How can I continue function on so little sleep?

I have a 6 month old and a 4 year old. I work full time. I get up by 6am at the latest. My oldest son goes to bed at 8 & the baby between 8 & 10. Once I get both boys to sleep, I pick up around the house, clean the kitchen, fold laundry before going to bed. By the time that's done, it's after 11 so I sometimes stay up to see my husband for even a few minutes, since he works 2nd shift. I'm usually ok with 6 hours of sleep, even better with 7. The problem is, most nights, my sleep is interrupted by at least one, if not both children. I have a hard time getting back to sleep once I've woken up. I think I'm averaging 4-5 non consecutive hours of sleep a night. I don't drink coffee & I'm diabetic, so energy drinks that contain sugar are out. I drink diet caffinated sodas just to keep going through the day, but it's not optimal. What can I do to cope with this lack of sleep and still do everything I need to each day?


Asked by elwalters77 at 10:42 AM on Oct. 28, 2009 in General Parenting

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This question is closed.
Answers (13)
  • Try to nap when the kids do, even an hour will help.Eat healthy foods and don't worry so much about how the house looks you have small kids you need some rest!

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:50 AM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • People may not like this answer. Some working moms have it easier than stay at home moms. Their jobs are easier then taking care of kids. Some stay at home moms go back to work because work is easier.

    Moms learn to function with little sleep. What worries me sleep deprived moms driving or doing other dangerous activities. Be careful. This won't last forever.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:53 AM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • Is your baby getting to the point where he can be put down earlier? When my son was 6 months old, he was going to bed at 7. If you can get to a point where both kids are going to bed at the same time, I'm sure that will help. Also, save your chores until the weekend. A messy house won't kill anyone.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:08 PM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • Anon :53 is right actually. I found working easier than staying home.

    But to answer the question, you will adjust to the limited sleep, and the baby should be sleeping more soon, too. Maybe keep all the non-essential chores, like laundry and vacuuming, for your days off. If your husband works 2nd shift, he can do some of that while he's home. Hang in there.

    Answer by Pnukey at 12:37 PM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • You cant function at your best... but you can function. I dont know how we do it, but women, specifically moms... (NO MATTER WHAT THEIR JOB or SAHM status) are amazing creatures who in the end will do anything for our kids, even if it means walking around like zombies! My DH works nights too so I know how you feel about staying up with him. On the days hes working, he gets home at 8am, goes to sleep, wakes up at 4.. showers, eats, and leaves. That means I am alone with the kids for 24 hours, 4 days straight. On his days off, he has to keep on the night schedule so he naps most of the day, and stays up all night. thats hard for me because I want to be with him, so I stay up till 3am, but then the kids wake up at 7 so I have to get up too. it sucks but I keep reminding myself its temporary and if its for them, I'll do anything. HOWEVER.. I do need to stop staying up.. and thats a sacrifice DH will have to live with!


    Answer by LuminousMom at 1:00 PM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • anon :53... wtf does that even have to do with the question? you don't know where she works or what she does... she might have the hardest job in the entire world, or does staying home with kids already have that title? she wanted advice not preaching about SAHM vs WM that has nothing to do with her question.

    OP i would talk to you doctor and also start taking multi-vitamins. What does your husband do before he goes to work? Could he maybe take care of the laundry for awhile? Sorry I can't offer more advice because I basically have the same problem and don't follow the advice I just gave you!

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:02 PM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • Is there any way your husband can pick up the slack? He works 2nd shift so he goes to work later in the day. He could throw laudry in to the washer, fold clothes, do dishes, straighten up, etc. and just have things in some sort of order for when you get home. That would really help ease up things for you and you might be able to at least relax for a bit before he gets home or even lay down on the couch.

    I had 4 children in 4 years and my body eventually adjusted to little sleep. I average about 6-7 hours a night and most nights (even with teens) it's interrupted thanks to a 40+ year old bladder and teens who need up at different times most days.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:26 PM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • use your days off to relax and take a nap when the kids do. even just lie on the couch while the kids play and have some down time. i would tell ur hubby that u are doing too much and need a little help with housework. even my hubby that works 50-55 hour weeks would help me out with the kitchen while i'm working. and i don't make it my mission to have a spotless house while im working, and i only have one kid. i figure if someone doesn't like it, they can clean it themselves cuz i'm too overextended

    Answer by Butterflysky_24 at 1:58 PM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • You dh needs to help you. Make a chore list together and schedule what days have what tasks and who does them.

    Answer by happytexasCM at 2:07 PM on Oct. 28, 2009

  • I agree your DH needs to pitch in (regardless of rather you are a SAHM or a WM), he works second shift, he can't stay up a bit longer in case one of the kids wake up so you can get some rest? (i'm assuming he starts working at 2pm or 3pm), so whenever you wake up, he can get some sleep before work etc

    Answer by Aniyunwiya at 4:35 PM on Oct. 28, 2009