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5 Bumps

Is this right or wrong?

Our son who is 2 1/2 years old has been stretching the bedtime routine any way he could for the last 2 months. My SO and I are exhausted beyond belief. On top of all that, he wakes up every night and comes to sleep in our bed around 3 a.m. which we have been tolerating. The routine starts at 7:15 and by the time he's sleeping and has finished calling us 150 times, it's almost 10 p.m. At first we kept going back and giving in to everything. For example, say I was cuddling with him and he slapped me or pulled my hair, I would leave the room but would go back 5 minutes after and if he started again, I would do the same thing over again...sometimes up to 5 times or more. We decided to put an end to this agony and I am 36 weeks pregnant so this can't go on forever. Anyhow, tonight, I read him a story (only 1) although he requested another (because when I give in to never ends) then I  pat his back the way he likes it for 5 min. When the 5 minutes were done, I told him good night nicely and left the room. After dad told him good night and also left the room. Then he got out of his bed, stood at the gate and was asking for me and asking for dad. I told dad to try the 5-10-15 method. So every 5 min. then 10 min. then 15 he went back to his room picked him up gently and put him in his bed. At one point, he had poo poo'd in his diaper so we took him out and cleaned him, but then sent him right back to bed. He did go to toilet before bed btw. Anyways, do you think this is mean? We really don't know what else to do at this point....It's now 9 p.m. Bedtime routine began at 7:15 and he seems to have settled in but he still isn't sleeping. Any opinions? Ideas?


Asked by bianca2422 at 9:00 PM on Jul. 12, 2011 in Toddlers (1-2)

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Answers (21)
  • Might I suggest that while I understand your desire your downtime, and I think you are doing the right thing on the sleep thing that you might be missing something. The time between daycare and sleep time is very, very short and all the drama might be in seeking attention from you which is very short on a weeknight and thus making your child want to delay bed time. Perhaps adding a transition activity where you bond between bed and bump bedtime back a little so he gets that isn't such a bad idea--and then it will be easier to sleep. Timing two minutes of cuddle time to me is what a professional kindergarten teacher does and not what a mommy does.

    Answer by hotelmom123 at 4:27 PM on Jul. 14, 2011

  • You have got to dig in your heels about this and put that boy to bed. He is testing you and so far it sounds like he's winning. Do your normal routine and once he's in bed do not go back in there unless he really needs you (diaper change, wounded, ect). It might take a couple nights of screaming and crying but you must put a stop to this now or your going to end up being up with him until midnight and not getting any sleep. Be strong woman!

    Answer by LadybugTash at 9:05 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • I always say "it's time for bed" the first time I have to come back and put him in his bed. After that I don't look at my kids, and just walk them or carry them to their beds, tuck them in and leave the room without saying ANYTHING. It may take a few nights or a few weeks, but he'll understand. Keep the bedtime routine the SAME every night, no compromises. Bath, PJ's,1 Book, 2 min of cuddle time, and done. Period. GL!

    Answer by BeachyBabe at 9:07 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • You have to toughen up, you have to say what you mean and mean what you say, if you say 1 book that means 1 book, if bedtime is 7.30, the routine should be finished by 7.30, if he gets out of bed politely put him back in with a warning, then if he keeps doing it from then on put him back in with no stimulation from you, eg - no lights on, no talking to him, nothing, if he cries, let him cry it out, it may take a few nights but he will get used to it but the key is you being consistant with it and not giving in!!!!!!! Mum and Dad have to be on the same page with it also, this will make things alot easier once the new baby comes!!!!!!! I would do it now or your making a rod for your own back, he knows he is controlling things and your exhaused!!!!!!!!!!! Thats what I would do anyway if I were you, GOOD LUCK!

    Answer by Princess_s21 at 9:36 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • Honestly I think you are giving in too much. My DD is 19 months and there is no way that she could slap me and I would go back I her room for her to do it again. I think he needs a little tough love. Bedtime is bedtime, not negotiating time. My DD walks to her own bed, climbs up, I give her a kiss, turn on her music, say goodnight and shut the door. She usually fusses for about 5-10 min, but never gets out of bed, never calls for us, and if she cries hard, or fusses for more than 30 min, I then go in to make sure she is ok. If so another kiss and that's it. Especially being pregnant in my opinioni it's time for him to be more of a big boy. Hope that doesn't sound too harsh, I haven't experienced a 2 1/2 year old yet.

    Answer by Pamarita at 10:52 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • Curious why do you use a gate not close the door, but still have a baby monitor on? I think the "open" door is too inviting for him. I would stop the going back to him 5-10-15... But that's a hard one because I don't have a gate so I don't really know the answer there.

    Answer by Pamarita at 10:54 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • thank you very much...that is what a friend of mine told me. I just hate to hear him cry because then I feel so guilty, but it just doesn't make sense anymore. I need time to myself and time with my SO + there are always a zillion gazillion things to do so I need to have time to do them before 10 p.m.

    Comment by bianca2422 (original poster) at 9:07 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • Has he always been this way? My daughter did this when she was about 3 but before then she was really good at bedtime. Anyway like you I'd had enough and decided to take a different tack. I made her a really cute star chart. it was a picture of her walking through a zoo and each animal she came across she could put a sticker on, when she got to the end there was a "big girl bike". There were 30 animals in all and along with each sticker sticker she got a Geoffrey Dollar. When the month was done she had all her Geoffrey Dollars I took her to Toys R Us and she got to buy herself her big girl bike.
    She was very excited about doing the chart and was eager to go to bed. The best part is after a month of going to bed nicely it became a habit and I never had a problem with her again.

    Answer by onethentwins at 9:09 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • But should I go back when he's standing at the gate? Should I then do the 5-10-15 min. method and go back and put him in his bed or just leave him crying and calling by the gate?

    Comment by bianca2422 (original poster) at 9:22 PM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • Thats sounds like us good thing your not alone.If you can is it possiable for you or your husband to take him to burn energy some where for at least an hour mabye longer, then dinner, warm bath ,pajamas,book kiss from mommy and daddy. My son is 2 also and we have same problem if it is too hot outside because you are pregnet try Mcdonolds playground or some where he can get tired he is a boy I think it will only get worse.Sorry, just remember it is bottled up energy.

    Answer by kiliki411 at 10:05 PM on Jul. 12, 2011