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toddler problems - regressive behavior?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Our new daughter is a little angel so far (knock on wood). She sleeps well, doesn't cry very often (just grunts loudly when she's hungry), and seems very sweet-natured. DS was a sweet, but colicky, needy baby - so this is a pleasant surprise for us. However, DS has been having a hard time. He is nice to his sister (though I wouldn't leave them alone in a room together), but since she was born (12 days ago) he has had some behavioral regression.

Specifically, naptime and bedtime are very hard for him. He always fussed for a couple of minutes after we would say goodnight, but he always stayed in his room with lights out and went to sleep on his own. Since he sees the new baby in bed with us, he asks to be in bed with us now. We tell him that we can all nap together - and we try. However, when he is in our bed he gets restless and doesn't fall asleep. If he comes in during the night, we do let him stay and sleep. However, we don't want to go backwards and do this at bedtime. We bought cute lights for his bed to encourage him to feel happier there. We try to be cheerful and stick to bedtime routines - but nothing works. He always ends up crying himself to sleep, turning on the light, coming out into the hallway, and even falling asleep on the floor with his blanket.

He is also more aggressive towards us (started hitting and slapping both of us - as well as having more temper tantrums). What about you other mothers of toddlers? Any BTDT moms that can lend advice and/or encouragement? How long does this last? Thanks for listening and sharing any tips you might have.
post #2 of 7
Even though they love their new siblings dearly, all of mine have gone through an adjustment period after a new baby comes along especially when they're in the 2-3yrs age range. None of mine have been closer than that so far. Having a new baby is an adjustment for everyone, and I have found for us that it just takes time and lots of grace and patience. It's helped us in the past to squeeze in a little extra one on one time here and there with the older one/s, like while the baby is sleeping, in a swing or with Daddy. I know that doing that is SO much easier said than done, though, when you're lucky just to get your own basic needs(eating, dressing, showering, etc) met during those times. If I remember right, it seems like things gradually improve week by week as the older ones realize they haven't been replaced, lol.

I have to say that one very nice thing about having a large family is that there is ALWAYS someone to hold the baby or read to/play with the younger ones that have a harder time adjusting. But, I very clearly remember how hard it was going from 1 to 2 kids with the oldest just being almost 3. That was by far the hardest transition after having a new baby, but even then I think by 6wks or so things were greatly improving.

Hang in there! It'll get easier!:-)
post #3 of 7
I am struggling with the same issues. My toddler is still nursing and sleeping with us though. My mom is here from OOT and we are going to IKEA tomorrow to let her pick out a new bed. She sleeps in a sidecar right now and has gotton possessive of it, calling it "mine"
post #4 of 7
My 2 1/2 yo ds starts in his bed and then usually comes in with us. I definitely saw regression when ds #2 first arrived. Bedtime/naptime was difficult for probably a couple of weeks. He would come out multiple times and ask for things and then cry when we made him go back into his room. I would say just stick to the routine and yours will adjust before too long. As far as agressive behavior, we didn't really see that. Our older ds did potty in various places around the house when not in his diaper (he's not "potty trained", but knows not to potty in the house except in the toilet.) That has pretty much tapered off now. Ds #2 is 10 weeks now and ds#1 still acts out some (like yelling "NO, go 'way, mommy!") when he doesn't get what he wants, but I think it's back to just the normal 2 yo behavior now.
post #5 of 7
We've definitely been struggling with sleep issues in our house as well. DD (who is 2.5YO) refuses to stay in her room or runs out at both naptime and in the evening. She often cries too and needs repeated hugs, which we give her, but it is pretty exhausting after the 25th hug. Naptime is the worst when it is just me and the two kids. They are often both crying at the same time and I feel so torn. I keep trying to get DS (who is now 1 month old) to sleep before I start the routine with DD, but invariably even if I can get him to sleep in the other room he wakes up again and needs to nurse, be held, etc. Sometimes I sling him but it is really hard to bend over to tuck DD in and she gets distracted by him. He starts crying again and then that gets her all excited. A couple of times after I have finally gotten her asleep then I can't get him to sleep. Let's just say I'm getting very little rest myself. My neck and shoulders are totally out of wack now. I wish I was better at babywearing.

Now DS seems to either have reflux or colic. He cries after nursing and is awake much of the afternoon, evening, and night. It is really hard because I'm not quite sure what is wrong. DH will be back to work tomorrow. Oh, it is going to be a long week!
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Isn't it odd that this is a common way for older siblings to regress? Maybe they are afraid that they will miss out on something if they fall asleep - part of the jealousy of watching their parents be preoccupied with another baby? Naps are terrible around here - today was the worst day yet. I think DS cried for 30 minutes and DH and I just tried to stay in our room and let him. I was crying too! I kept being afraid that leaving him to cry in his room so that we enforce naptime would make him have some psychological issues. However, yesterday we just let him skip the nap and by 4pm he was nodding off in the shopping cart when we ran out to do an errand. He is miserable if he misses a nap- yet he still fights it. I wish we could find some solid advice on this other than waiting it out. I know kids outgrow naptime, but I know this isn't the case since the behavior started the second day at home with DD and he dozes off or becomes miserable without a nap. At least I know this is not just my son going through it.
post #7 of 7
My 4 year old is doing the "insomnia" part and my 2 year old is doing the temper tantrums. I cant explain it. The last couple weeks since I brought the baby home have been extra hard because the other kids are making things more difficult. But I just continued on doing what I was doing before. I try to give them each a little more individual attention, because with the new baby i guess they feel like you love them less or something, i dunno, i can only speak on my kids, but they been extra extra needy of my love and attention and they have to tell me they love me 100000 times a day now as oppossed to the 50000 times they did it before.

I dont know... I just tell them that I love them as much as possible and I include them in feeding and washing and holding the baby, which has helped a little bit.

My 11 month old is the most jealous, but he just whines when my husband holds the baby. But isnt too much i can do about that lol.
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