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3 year old not sleeping

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I posted on the night waking board but I think that people with younger babies hang out there, anyway nobady had any wisdom to offer so I'm going to try here.
how can I make this work?

I know the benefits of co-sleeping but I'm having a hard time with it because I work full time and go to school full time which means I'm tired......we have been slowly moving our almost 3 yr old ds toward indepentdent sleeping. he slept in our bed until he was about two and then he crawled into our bed when ever he wanted. a couple of weeks ago we moved his bed away from ours in the same room and started trying to comfort him with our words and massage to get him to go to sleep, he cried the first night but after that he slept in his without crying and one night he even crawled into bed by himself and put himself to sleep, with no crying. BUT, we are back to waking up and crying which tells me that he has a need to comforted. Right? the only problem is I'm so fricking tired that I'm having a hard time being nice to anyone during the day. it doesn't work to have all of us the bigger size bed, we just are too cramped. I feel like my dh is so frustrated with the whole thing that he is ready to put my ds in a room by himself. (Don't worry that won't happen) when do co-sleeping kids decide that they feel comfortable sleeping through the night ? I weaned him 6months ago, so he is not waking up for snacks. any moms that have kids that decide that they want their own room? I start to question weather I'm doing him a favor by this sleeping arrangement....I have heard that you have to "teach" kids how to sleep and if you don't they will be insomniacs for the rest of their lives. Is this true? Any one grew up co-sleeping? I'm feeling really down about this and want to be able to strike a balance so that everyone's needs are being met. Any suggestions? I beginning to wonder if he has a sleeping disorder or something. Any other moms with the same issues?
post #2 of 9
Yes, I can relate to that one! My dd woke every 2 - 3 hours. Co-Sleeping was getting difficult because of her size and the fact that she was all over the bed. I was actually leaving in the night to sleep on the couch because it was so cramped.

I read somewhere to put a small night stand next to their bed and put a light snack and glass of water beside it. Let them pick the snack and put it there. Then tell them that if they wake up at night they may have the snack and water. Mommy and Daddy are there if you need, but, really need some extra sleep. I asked her if she could help us. I was amazed when it worked the first night! We had fall-outs as you would imagine, but it really did work for us!!

She's 4 1/2 now and we still put the water and snack next to her bed. Many times she wakes us up in the morning to let us know she's out of food and ready for breakfast!

Best of luck to you. It sounds like you have a lot on your plate now. You must be feeling so frustrated and exhosted. Let us know how things go.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 


It feels good to know that there are others that have gone through what I am, I like the idea of the night stand, I guess I need to think of all the reasons that he might be waking up so much and try different solutions.
post #4 of 9
The new waking up might not have anything to do with where he is sleeping but might be caused by something else -- like stress during the day, a growth spurt, coming down with the flu, etc. It might just go away on its own.

He might be waking up because he isn't getting enough time with you during the day (you sound REALLY busy).

My older DD asked for her own bed in her own room about the time she turned 4, but she doesn't sleep there much. She perfers to sleep in the double bed in her sister's room. I lay down with both of them while they fall asleep, and then I usually get up and go sleep with my DH. Some nights I end up just falling asleep with the girls.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
those are all really good things to think about. I take my ds to work with me and take one class online and one class is a saturday morning class, if I'm not with him, his papa is, so I don't think that is from a lack of attention. He does wake up more when there is a disruption, he'll wake up 7=10 times a night instead of his usual 3-5. I do the same thing that you do, I snuggle him to sleep and then join the bed with my dh. I have been crawling out of bed everytime he cries and snuggling hin back to sleep but I started this week to not actually get into bed with him, but talk softly and massage him from the side of the bed, I notice that he sleeps better when I do that then if I get into bed with him.
thanks for the helpful wisdom.
post #6 of 9
you aren't alone! My dd (now 5), has only begun sleeping through in the past 6 months or so. (she's in her own room now) And she still will wake during the night at least once/week. I understand the exhaustion - with my new baby I was just snapping at big sister when she woke - finally i explained to her that if she disturbed me at night i would be crabby during the day and that seems to have worked. she has a nightlight, a tape player with a tape, and a dream journal by her bed. sleep has always been an issue for her, but it is finally getting better. hang in there!
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
thanks for the encouragement. I have been doing a patience meditation every night. He responses so much better when I use a gentle voice with, even though I do get really frustrated. It is nice to know that there are other moms that understand, I tried taking to my doctor about it and he looked at me like I was crazy, and ask me why I hadn't just let him cry it out.
post #8 of 9
is the patience meditation for you or him?? i could probably use something like that for myself...
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
It's for me. I pick a quiet time to sit alone in a room,close my eyes and say, " I will have a open heart to be sensitive to this childs needs. I'm the adult and will do for him what he can not for himself. I am at peace with the fact that my child needs me to be loving and respectful at night."
It's amazing what can happen when you take time to be centered and focused on your hearts true feeling.
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