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I really need some reassurance NOW!

Our 3 year old has never learned to put himself to sleep. (No lectures, please.) We are starting the suggestions in "Healthy Sleep Habit, Happy Child" tonight. My husband is taking him back to bed repeatedly without any type of verbal response. Our son has been bawling and begging for me for over an hour. He also says, "Daddy, talk!" My heart is breaking, as I sit downstairs crying my eyes out. I just want to run up there and grab him. How long will this take????? It is devastating!

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Asked by TRooney at 9:27 PM on Nov. 17, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 2 (10 Credits)
Answers (9)
  • you have to just kinda ignore it..i know that sounds terrible, but we did it when my son was 19 mo. and it only took like 4 days of locking himin his room , and now we just say goodnight...he will cry for like 5 min sometime..if he even cries at all...then he just goes right to bed...i have to was hard at first , but then it got much easier, and i got alil sanity back

    Answer by guitarmom101 at 9:33 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • hes 22 mo. now...and im ready to have a baby any day now. im happy i started putting him down by himself....and there is nothing in his room he can hurt himself with...just his bed, and his toys, and i can see him through my pocket doors if i need to..i just had to put locks on both doors he has.....its a big room

    Answer by guitarmom101 at 9:36 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • The first night is the hardest and each night it will get a little bit easier. Hang in there. He's not hurt or dying, he just wants what he wants. Think about it: in 10 years, your child probably won't even remember this.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:06 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • I agree the first night will be the hardest. Hopefully it will go quickly for you. I did a different method when my son was 2, amazingly it only took 3 nights. My daughter is 2 now and it's taking longer with her. We're doing pure cry it out because she has a crib she can't get out of, and she completely freaks out and becomes 10x more hysterical every time we go in there to reassure her. But it's been about a week for her and the crying time has dropped from over an hour to about 10 minutes.

    Answer by mybella81 at 10:51 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • Just remind yourself that it will get better soon and you are doing your child a favor in the long run because they have to learn to put themselves to sleep eventually and putting it off longer will only make it harder. Maybe give some extra love during the day but you won't scar him for life or anything by doing this technique. It always works for Supernanny. :) Be strong and good luck!

    Answer by MaryMW at 11:10 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • How was he getting to bed before? If this method is going against your instincts I say don't use it. ((Hugs)) I tried something like that with my daughter and it didn't work. I guess I didn't make it work. But now she is four and she goes to bed just fine.

    Answer by anklebitr at 11:18 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • Ohh yes I forgot. Elizabeth Pantley has a 'No cry sleep solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers" There doesn't have to be one way for your guy to get to sleep. If the one you are using now is not working then try something else. Eventually he will learn how to sleep on his own. :-)

    Answer by anklebitr at 11:21 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • Ok so you need reassurance. Not all kids perfectly lay in their bed, covers neatly up to armpits, dad tossles kid's hair and says "goodnight kiddo", and drift off into lala land magically like in the movies!! If you want to let him CIO then do it and be consistant. Buy him a Glo worm, its a cute light up toy. Each child has his own needs and you will figure it out. Use your instincts.

    I relate to you a little bit because my dd was a little difficult to manage at bedtime then we realized that if we stuck the doggie in there she was fine. Now my son likes for the door to be cracked just so and he is a great sleeper. My LO (other son) likes to be rocked and he has to hug his favorite bear. So I hope you find something that works fo you.

    Answer by 3gigglemonsters at 10:37 AM on Nov. 18, 2009

  • Okay, you've been perfectly happy to help him to sleep for 3 years. It is completely unfair to just change overnight. It's easiest for YOU, but not for him. There is middle ground. You can stay with him until he falls asleep, talking a bit first, then saying it's quiet time. Why not make this a gentle, gradual process? I don't understand why people expect their children to just overnight fall asleep and stay asleep all night. Learning any new skill takes time, and usually some help from the parents.

    Answer by apexmommy at 12:55 PM on Nov. 18, 2009

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