Author Topic: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!  (Read 902 times)

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Offline Halszka

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Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« on: October 09, 2018, 19:16:14 pm »
Hi all. I think I need some guidance as I seem to be failing at getting my 2 year old daughter to sleep without her dummy. She put it in the bin 5 days ago, got a present in return, got praised a lot for being such a big girl etc. First couple of nights/nap times she took 1.5h to fall asleep and we had one nap refusal. She now seems to be taking less time to fall asleep but bedtime is a battle. She wants her drink multiple times and keeps saying 'drink' until I say 'have a drink' (she used to just stood up and had a drink), then it's a cuddle or she wants me to 'sleep' on the floor. She ends up working herself up to a point she's hysterical and won't let me lay her down. And when I finally give her a cuddle (didn't take her out of the cot today, she just rested her head on my tummy while standing up in the cot), she calms down, I rub her back for a bit and then slowly walk out of the room but leave the door slightly ajar and sit by her door and she falls asleep by herself. My question is, how do I stop her having this meltdown before she agrees to settle? I managed to promise/bribe her with a gingerbread man at nap time today and I put it in her cot just before I had to wake her up to do a school run. Tried the same approach this evening but it didn't work. Her schedule is:

Wake up - 6ish( her gro clock is set for 6.10 but often can hear her waking up before 6)
Nap- 12.30-2.30 (3 latest)
Bath-6.45
Books
Lights out at 7.15

Any advice will be hugely appreciated!

Offline Haribo2012

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2018, 14:49:57 pm »
Hi
It could just be a coincidence and maybe she just needs a little less day sleep?
Zoe


Offline Katet

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2018, 00:43:26 am »
I found we needed to have a much much longer wind down. The Dummy has a huge calming effect and removing that is a big step...its like taking their most prized possesion away. I think rather than thinking about what you are struggling with its  important to focus on its their journey to deal with their massive change and show them you are there to support her through her struggle. The more you make it about supporting her (less praise more empathy) the more you help her grow.. Praise and bribes are about the parents needs, empathy and extra time supporting their adjustment are what give the least impact on mental health (as the loss of a dummy is a hit on emotional and mental health)
dc1 July 03, dc2 May 05

Offline Halszka

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2018, 13:13:53 pm »
Thanks for your replies. We seemed to have cracked it after a week when I had to work in the evening and wasn't home for bedtime. Daddy put her to bed and left the room and that was it! It worked for 2.5 days and now we're in bigger trouble that we've been before. There is a real bedtime struggle, fighting naps, massive overtiredness, clinginess, night wakings( me camping out on the floor) and early wakings. It all changed when we had friend's kids over weekend and I think she got jealous of them getting daddy's attention (she gave him cold shoulder after that, refusing cuddles etc.). What approach would you recommend? I really don't want to become a sleep prop and am sooo close to giving her dummy back. Just don't want those 2 weeks of nightmare to be a waste!

Offline Katet

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2018, 00:22:38 am »
It sounds to me like all the differences with Daddy putting to bed and visitors have caused some emotional upset.
Its important to realise its possible to slowly lessen involvement, and its better to meet at the needs  emotionally rather than stress that its a habit...it's mych harder to build confidence than it is to slowly remove yourself from being there for comfort.
If it was me Id meet the need thats there now and show her you are there for her, then its highly probable it could go back to better when her confidence in your support is built back up
dc1 July 03, dc2 May 05

Offline Halszka

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2018, 12:00:26 pm »
Thank you for your replies so far. Yes, I think you're right. I am now cuddling her all the time, sitting by her cot until she's in a deep enough sleep that I know she won't wake up when I leave the room. My problem now is she refuses naps. As soon as she's in the cot, she gets really fidgety and keeps herself awake. I sit there, cuddle her or rub her tummy/back when she asks for it but she just won't sleep. She doesn't even want to cuddle her doggy she's always slept with. It's like she knows if she cuddles him she might start feeling sleepy and doesn't want to do it. She's been falling asleep in the buggy on a school run past 2 days, but since it's past 3pm I only let her have 20-25 mins. She's massively overtired and it doesn't help that she's not very well with a cold. I tried yo put her down earlier today since she's been very tired all morning but gave up after 30 mins. I've now taken her out in the buggy and she fell asleep straight away. I can do it for the next 3 days so she catches up on some sleep but won't be able to do that Mon-Weds as I'm at work. Any advice how to approach this?

Offline Conniesmummy

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2018, 19:14:13 pm »
Personally Id give it back and reconsider giving it up when shes older and has better understanding. We waited til our littly was around 3 and she willingly gave it up. We let her choose one to put inside a build a bear and that was it. A friend of mine put their daughters inside those little wash powder net bags and hung them in a little bush. They told her the birds would take them and removed one each day. Honestly, so much easier xx

Offline Halszka

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2018, 08:58:50 am »
I do think about giving it back sometimes but it's been 2.5 weeks sice we dropped it and she managed to self settle after that. I stayed with her and gave her cuddles day time and night time. She then stopped settling with me in the room and started playing, chatting and winding herself up. So I decided to start doing WI/WO. It worked in a sense she eventually calmed down and was ready to sleep. First night she fell asleep with my hand in her back while I was settling her. Yesterday's nap was great and she fell asleep independently with very little crying during WI/WO. Last night though she again fell asleep while I was striking her back and then woke up at 1.20am and I stayed in stroking her back until 3.30am. I am knackered and so is she. I realise I might have send her mixed messages/settling her too long with stroking but I'm not entirely sure how to do it otherwise. As soon as I stop rubbing her back she starts crying and asks me to rub her back, unsettling herself again. And that's before I even leave the room. I'm finding it hard to distinguish now what is real crying and what's not at the moment. She goes full volume straight away. How long should I be out of the room and how long should I settle her for. One thing we managed to move forward with is not picking her up from the cot. Grateful for any words of advice!

Offline Halszka

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2018, 14:30:02 pm »
Ok, so last night might be explained by the fact she threw up twice today. I did do WI/WO for nap as she seemed OK and she fell asleep on her own. She called me but didn't get upset. Fingers crossed we have a better night!

Offline Katet

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2018, 20:04:19 pm »
I think tge how long is where you look at the big picture rather than the moment. Yes you want good sleep habits and to reduce the boring time it is for you to get the sleep happening BUT her emotional health and your connection is a bigger picture part. If she is showing a he needs you then you give support. We are conditioned to think if they dont do what we want they are manipulating us, but really when we put our desires as the priority we are teaching them she/he who is the most persistent wins, so we teach them HJ ow to have a battle of wills. When I hear a parent saw "they are a stubborn child" I know they have an equally stubbon parent.
In the big picture I can tell you humans only seek what they need, she wont need your help getting her to sleep every night at 10 or even probably 5 or 6, butveven at 50! sometimes I  just need a little more effort to relax to get to sleep and sobwhy wouldnt a 2 yo.
We have a puppy, we've had him for 5 days... it's like having a toddler again...the desire to have him do exactly as we'd like to fit our needs verses the habits he has from before we got him and as we got him at 15 weeks he has habits...we could crate train him as lots recommend but to me that doesn't establish a relationship rather a dictatorship and I found that thought process has helped me a lot over the years. Questioningis tge outcome here about me getting what I want or is it about establishment of a bond of trust between us. You can spoil a child with too many possessions but with time rarely. The key is communication not time.There is no perfect answer but more upset, more support,
dc1 July 03, dc2 May 05

Offline Halszka

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2018, 19:44:09 pm »
Yes, Katet I think you're right saying having a strong bond is very important and I might be a bit selfish trying to get her to sleep independently. But, she comes to work with me 3.5 days a week and gets a lot of cuddles and attention from me during that time. We have Thurs morning and Friday all day just the 2 of us and spend most weekends as a family of 3. So she gets a lot of mummy time. On the other hand I can't be spending 2 hours by her bedtime each evening and 2-3 hours at night. It makes it impossible to work 11 hours next day and impacts my mental and physical health and it makes me a tired, grumpy and impatient mum which is horrible for both of us. I feel horrible having to do it, and I know I'll miss the days she wants a cuddle but equally I want to be here for her for as long as I can and I can't run on 3-4 hours sleep a night. I know she can self settle because she's done it before (even after dropping the dummy) and just needs a reminder. It breaks my heart that I have to do it but I just don't see any other solution.

Offline Katet

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2018, 08:51:00 am »
On the other hand I can't be spending 2 hours by her bedtime each evening and 2-3 hours at night.

It sounds like she senses that you are struggling with the time & she may feel like you don't want to be there & so in typical toddler fashion the more they feel that we aren't really having our heart in it the more they push to get our heart in it.

Also I remember when my 2 were little DS1 got his cup full from doing things like lego or throwing a ball, Ds2 from sitting & having cuddles & reading stories. I could spend an hour playing lego with DS2 or an hour cuddling & reading stories with DS1 & they'd still want more & bedtimes were far more messy & demanding, but spend 30mins Lego with DS1 & the stories with DS2 & life was better. Sadly often the things that most fill their cups can be the things we substitute with things we enjoy more, which is why when we give them lots of time we don't realise it's not the time that fills their cup up.
dc1 July 03, dc2 May 05

Offline Haribo2012

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Re: Ditching the dummy and sleep time drama!
« Reply #12 on: October 22, 2018, 17:50:05 pm »
How long is she napping? What time is wake up and BT? Settling nicely to sleep can be hard if her day is a little off too.
My DS2 is needing me in the night again (3 in jan) I just lay on some cushions until he goes back to sleep then he knows Im there.
Could you put a mattress in the room or something comfy to lay on then you could fall asleep there and go back to your bed after shes asleep. I would say to her Ill sit/lay here but you go to sleep and try and remove the back rubbing.
Its an age where things at night become real so dislike of being alone, being frightened of the dark or noises, dreams and so much going on with language that sometimes they struggle to sleep.x
Zoe