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Please tell me about sleep and your AP teenager

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
At another board (I frequent a few), there is a tiny discussion about the eternal topic of sleep and sleep issues.

My dd is 10 months old, and we always hold her (or rock her) as she falls asleep. I figure at some point this will evolve and she'll eventually fall asleep on her own more and more. I figure, I only have a short time of this kind of closeness and I wouldn't think of Ferber or the other methods.

Assuming that you did something similar with your child when she was a baby (nursing to sleep, co-sleeping - - - anything other than training them/CIO stuff), at what point did they become independant?

Can you tell me about how your sleep choices early on helped shape bedtime in your house? Any regrets?

Any anecdotal information would be appreciated.

post #2 of 8
We have had all our babies in our bed (co-sleeping)until they wanted to sleep in a bed of their own. Most of the time they went from our bed to sleeping with a sibling for a time. I find that kids around the ages of 5 to 7 develop a natural modesty and begin to seek more privacy in all areas. Dh likes to read to the kids at bedtime so it has become a family ritual of sorts. When our one year old grandson is here he will even go up for grandpa's stories and then come back down to mommy after the story. When our kids aren't tired they will read in bed till they are. I do have a son in college that stays up till all hours of the night, but doubt that has anything to do with him sleeping with us as a child.

post #3 of 8

Great questions! Can't post a response as my dd is 18 months, but I am interested in what others have to say as well. My intuition tells me as independence grows so does the shift out of the family bed - in the childs' own time.

post #4 of 8
There is a similar thread/poll in Nightwaking forum.
post #5 of 8

My dd and ds, (now almost 17 and 12) both slept with us until they decided to wean themselves and work toward becoming "big kids." Dd went first when she was about 5, allowing ds to stay with us until he was so big that he crowded dh out. We played musical beds for a while, and finally settled into our own spaces. (Even now, I sometimes slip out to the couch to find my own little cozy corner with the cat curled up at my feet!)

Both of our kids usually go to bed with very little prodding about the same time we do, around 9 or 10. We usually get up pretty early, (like 5 or 6) so we've all learned how much better it feels to have adequate sleep each night.

I still go in and say goodnight, close the curtains, make sure the covers are tucked in, etc. if they're not feeling especially independent. Sometimes I'll walk by their rooms, and they're already asleep. Other times I'll hear, "Mom, I'm going to sleep now," that's my cue that it's OK to be there for a few minutes.

I didn't mention, though, that neither one slept much or for very long as an infant or a toddler!
post #6 of 8
Well, I have 2 teens, one preteen, a toddler and a one year old. I've never given bedtimes, as I never liked them as a child, and we unschool. Always nursed them to sleep...still nurse my littlest ones to sleep and cosleep with both of them. My kids all coslept from birth and moved to their own beds around 4 or so...coming back once in a while...our 10 year old still sleeps on our floor sometimes. Our teenagers go to bed between 1 and 3 am. They like watching tv or getting on the computer. My 10 year old goes when I go, because she can't sleep unless I tuck her in, so she goes around 12, our 2 year old goes with dad at 10 and our 1 year old goes when I go. I guess our kids have never had sleep issues because we let them decide when to sleep and wake. Both of my teens have gone through a sleep in period, where they couldn't get up til noon...I figured they needed the rest. My 13 year old is moving out of this period and getting up earlier. Our family thinks we should force them to get up, but studies suggest that teens that are growing need extra sleep. Anyway, I wouldn't change anything about our sleep patterns. The bigger kids are all independant sleepers now..going to bed early if they need to get up early, with out me having to tell them, and our babies sleep in as long as we want to , so thats extra nice. I love cosleeping.
post #7 of 8
I can't really comment from the point of view of having a teenager who was "APed" as a baby/kid because my 15 year old was not with us yet when he was younger. However, I was raised in a household in which nursing, cosleeping, etc. were the norm, so I can tell you a bit about my sleeping experiences growing up.

When I was a baby, I slept in bed with my parents. I self-weaned earlier than all of my siblings (I think around 9-16 months) because my mom was pregnant, and I didn't like the taste of her milk anymore. As the bed got more crowded with each new sibling, which happened sometime during our toddler or preschool years (we're all three years apart except for my younger brother who is 18 months younger than I am), my parents moved us onto small cots by the side of their bed.

Eventually as each of us grew out of our cots, we moved out of our parent's room (my brother was the latest to move out...it took him until he was about 9, while I think it took the rest of us only a few months from the time we moved out of my parent's bed). Once we left my parent's room, we would often sleep in the same bed with each other. I was the third child, so my older sisters often would let me cuddle with them, but I wanted my space at night by the time I was about 7 or 8.

My mom is an on-the-move-all-the-time personality, and her older kids never napped. She thought something was wrong with me when I came along because I was a sleepy child and was constantly falling asleep wherever we might go. I was well-known for waking up from long naps and sneaking off to crawl under the table for another nap. I've been that way my whole life.

As a teenager, there were days when I would sleep in until noon (teens' biological clocks are different than adults and cause more late nights and late mornings), take a nap again from 5-8p.m., and then get up and hang until 1 or 2 a.m. As an adult, I sleep more than most folks. My wife has gotten used to covering for me while I take a long (2-3 hour) afternoon nap at least once or twice a week.

All the kids in my family had different sleeping habits when we were children, and all of us turned out differently. I was the only sleepy child and am the only sleep adult.

In terms of independence, I am by nature a very independent person, and if anything, I probably stepped my feet out in front of myself before I was ready. My younger brother who moved out of my parent's room when he was 9, on the other hand, has always been a slow-to-step-out personality from the time he was born. This translated, as you can see by the above information, into our sleeping habits. I don't think it's probable that any of that could have been changed by my parents doing the sleep thing differently. We were all treated the same, and we all ended up with different teenage and adult sleeping habits. What I can say is that the way our parents parented us at night reaffirmed for us that we were loved and that we could depend on our parents to meet our needs...even the emotional ones.

As for my 15 year old, he still needs lots of sleep but resists it for as long as he can just like younger kids...

post #8 of 8
my 16 yr old dd was kind of pushing me out of the bed at 18 m or so, but now that i have a 2 1/2 yr old and a 7 m old i am thinking that might be rare . (i am a restless sleeper; she sleeps like a log.) she never had the experience of cio, and i think that helped her sleep deeply and restfully (she still does.) of course, temperament is a factor, too. but i think i wouldn't be half the sleep-fighter i am if i hadn't screamed myself to sleep in sheer terror and despair for years (such nightmares!)

nice to meetcha, sariha- another unschooling mom with teens and littles! and 'hey', sierra! how's married life? 15 yr old! i do need to catch up w/ ya!

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