Tell me about how your toddler/preschooler gave up naps - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 02-22-2012, 09:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Tell me about how your toddler/preschooler moved out of napping. Did the nap get smaller and smaller until they were just not sleeping or did you go from having a long (2,3 hour) nap to no nap at all? Some days my 24 month old skips her nap and you can tell she really still needs it by 4pm she can barely stand up. She only sleeps 10 hours at night. Most days she still naps and when she does it is 3 hours or more. lately these LONG naps are getting in the way of going to bed at what i consider a decent time and causing her night time sleep to get shorter and shorter (9 hours last night) since she seems to be incapable of sleeping past 6am. Am i going to have to eventually force her to stop napping and sleep more at night or is the fact that she is still taking 3 hour naps indicative of her still napping for a few more years? Will i have to shorten her naps to make her go to bed sooner? Tell me your story on how it happened for you.

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#2 of 9 Old 02-22-2012, 11:45 AM
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DS (34 months) still naps but he is doing the same as your DD. So far I have pushed bedtime back and will wake him up at 3:30pm if he's still sleeping. That works well for now. I anticipate that I will have to force him to drop the nap eventually so that he will have a full night's sleep. I'm hoping that we can keep the nap at least until his birthday.

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#3 of 9 Old 02-22-2012, 02:32 PM
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Just wanted to say that we're in the same boat over here.  In fact, I just put DD down for the night (It's 5:20).  I don't have any answers, but I have a complicated theory about all this:  I suspect that the almost-twos reach an age where they can comfortably stay awake much longer than they needed to when they first started doing 1 nap.  So, while they used hit that "can't function anymore" point at naptime, now they hit it at a time that's too early for bed, but too late to nap and still get sufficient sleep at night.  I think the two choices must be to give up the fight and drop the nap OR to keep plugging away at an early naptime and try to turn it into a learned behavior based on the ups and downs of the day rather than being exhausted.  I mean, adults nap perfectly well, but don't necessarily NEED to.  So, I give DD an hour of "naptime" every day, right in the middle of her day.  She usually doesn't sleep, but sometimes I do(!), and it makes me feel proactive about preserving the nap without going crazy about it.  And then she just goes to bed really, really early.  Not ideal, but it works for now.

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#4 of 9 Old 02-22-2012, 04:50 PM
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MY daughter is just turning 3. Twice in this past year she has had a couple 


Weeks where she stopped taking naps. I kept trying and she would start again

i dont put her down until 1:30 and I wake her up by 3:00.she will still go to bed by 8ish.

Basically it just took some adjustment of times and she was napping again.

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#5 of 9 Old 02-23-2012, 09:51 AM
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ds1 at almost exactly 3yrs old

ds2 is already sporadic at best with naps and since he was about 21mths old

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#6 of 9 Old 02-23-2012, 08:15 PM
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DD's naps got more and more erratic after 20 months--a lot of times I'd have to drive her around in the car or else she wouldn't fall asleep--and by 23 months she'd stopped taking naps completely.  For most of that period, when she took a nap, it was still 2-3 hours long.  She never woke up happily, though, unlike she did when she was younger; I think her naps would've been even longer if I'd been able to come back to bed and snuggle her down instead of cooking dinner.  It was like she'd lost the ability to sleep up for short periods of time, and was really just trying to go to bed for the night at 3 PM.  She was also really interested in opposites around then, and I suspect that part of her reluctance to nap was that she'd decided that sleeping was for night time and not an activity that belongs to the day.  In any case, when she didn't take a nap, she went to bed earlier to compensate.  By 24 months she was settled in that sleep schedule and didn't seem tired until an hour or so before bedtime. 

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#7 of 9 Old 03-04-2012, 07:18 PM
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My oldest two do not nap. They just started going longer and longer without naping and when they napped they would be really short. Then it dawned on me they hadn't napped in a few weeks. They will still on occasion take a nap but rarely. Its just always an option if its wanted.

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#8 of 9 Old 03-05-2012, 06:13 AM
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My son is 3 and he still naps at daycare but I don't push them too much on the weekends. If he gets really cranky and whiny I know he needs to lay down for a bit. If he seems ok. I don't push him but I do move bedtime up at least 30 minutes so he can get some extra sleep at night. 

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#9 of 9 Old 03-14-2012, 08:53 PM
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my son LOVES to sleep. so does my daughter lol

both my kids slept all night from about 8 weeks and 12 weeks. 

both each would have two, 2-3 hour naps a day and sleep 8-10 hour nights. 


my son is now 2 and its been recently he hasnt been napping at all. He will have red eyes, get all cuddly and looking half asleep so we will get him all cozy in his bed and close the door for a nap... 20 mins later we hear him up and playing in his room and when we open his door he caught his second wind lol. now its rare for him to nap, but his personality is fine. 


our daughter is almost 6 months, and already she only has one 2 hour nap in the early afternoon... 


only means i get less alone time to myself lol. im okay with it.. harder on me to force a nap then to just go on with the day. 

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