Early riser - Mothering Forums
Co-sleeping and the Family Bed > Early riser
AliceMay's Avatar AliceMay 05:01 AM 10-03-2012

Our 17 year old sleeps with us. We have a queen bed with futon right beside it, and she sleeps on the futon with me starting with her there and scouting back and forth....it's a good system. 

Right now, bedtime is pretty good but we are struggling with her getting up early. 5 am. She has always been an early riser. Bedtime starts at 7:30 and she is normally (good days!) asleep by 8. And then awake at 5. When I talk to friend they say "early bedtime, early mornings" but I didn't think that was such an early bedtime? I don't expect her to sleep in, but 6 would be so much more doable that 5. What do you think? Is there any way to achieve that? Later bedtime tends to make her wake even EALIER, though in fairness we haven't tried that in a sustained way. I haven't played around with her bedtime for a while, since it is working well.

Right now, our approach is to not get up 'til 6 - keep things dark, no talking, no playing...."still sleep time". Not much luck yet. Plus, because we EC, she always has to get up to pee when she wakes.

Would love to hear if anybody has any ideas to postpone her wake-up time. Oh, I should say she naps for 2 hours at 1pm. Any thoughts? Are we just stuck with 5am?


skycheattraffic's Avatar skycheattraffic 11:26 AM 10-03-2012
My first thought was over tiredness until I read about the nap. If she typically sleeps 8 to 5 then it may actually be overtiredness anyway. My 18 month old DD has a similar bedtime but she naps earlier. In your shoes, I'd try to move the nap earlier to see of she could fall asleep and have more time to tire out before bedtime. My DD goes down about 4 hours after waking in the morning, naps for 1 to 2 hours (I usually have to nurse her back down halfway through) and we start nursing down at bedtime between 7 and 7:30. She wakes around 6 or 7 (usually 7), we start naptime around 11 and she's up again by 2 at the latest. Even if moving her naptime isn't possible, I'd try putting her down a little earlier to see if that helps, say 7. Earlier bedtime may help her sleep longer if she is overtired. Is she generally cranky or fussy by bedtime? If so, that is a good indication that an earlier bedtime may help.

On the EC front, I totally hear you! DD used to wake up dry, need to potty, then be wide awake and need a lot of help to fall asleep again. Nowadays she wakes up wet (often jammies and sheets too) and I have to change her then nurse and it's not much better. We actually haven't had an overnight catch in a while.

Another thought is some white noise to help her stay asleep (although if she needs to pee then that won't help. When DD wakes early, I can often manage to nurse her while she's drowsy for another 30 to 45 minutes. That helps DH but not me so much.

I find my DD sleeps better at night if we are outdoors after her nap. Fresh air and exercise after her nap helps get her ready to sleep and keep sleeping.

Anyways, those are my jumbled thoughts. I hope you find something that helps.
AliceMay's Avatar AliceMay 06:50 PM 10-03-2012

thanks for those thoughts! I may try moving nap even a little earlier, and possibly try nudging bedtime back, and see if that helps at all. (actually, I know napping earlier makes sense, it's just trying to fit it in with things, and lunch...) If we have to drive somewhere, or I have her in the bike trailer, she will often fall asleep in the morning, which makes me think she needs a bit more sleep. But she isn't normally cranky at bedtime. Anyway, I'll have a go. And also consider moving MY bedtime earlier. ;)

thanks again, sometimes it just helps to brainstorm.