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Question for UP'ers - naptime struggles

post #1 of 2
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I'm in the middle of reading UP right now and really really like his approach to parenting. It fits with my values and how I want to approach parenting. Some of his ideas I find I do already but others are new and still others I need to tweak.


One struggle DD (29 months) and I have been having on and off for a few months now is around naptime. Our routine is to read a book and then go up and cuddle in bed until she falls asleep. Well, cuddle or roll around, talk loudly, thrash about, climb on top of me, etc. She needs her nap. It's fairly non-negotiable for me (although I recognize that there are occasional days when she just will not fall asleep and then we get up and do something else and aim for an earlier bedtime - and I try not to get too upset about those days).


I generally don't mind some talking or rolling around as I know it does take her awhile to un-wind and I don't want to interfere with her own ways of doing that. However, there are days (like today!) when she just will not settle - yelling, standing up on the bed and jumping, climbing on top of me - and I know when she gets like that it just winds herself up more instead of winding herself down. My approach to date has been to calmly and quietly inform her that if she continues to do _______ instead of lie quietly and sleep, then we will both go and sit in the chair and rock to sleep. I tell her that it seems as if she's having trouble settling herself so let's try something different. She never stops doing what she's doing and then I pick her up and we go sit in the chair. She screams and cries and tries to climb out of my arms saying "I want to lie in the bed!!". I usually wait a minute or two and then quietly ask if she's going to lie quietly beside me in the bed and then we go back to the bed and lie down and she's usually asleep pretty quick after that.


This approach doesn't feel right to me - it's clearly not working to get her to stop doing the behaviour, it clearly upsets her a lot, and it feels too much like I'm trying to manipulate her into falling asleep in a certain way. But I'm completely at a loss as to what else I can do, along UP lines, to encourage her to nap and to avoid this particular struggle.

Any ideas?

post #2 of 2

Good question!  I'm really interested what other mamas will suggest...

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