So. . . I have a 2 year old and he has always had a natural late bedtime which falls around 9pm. Over time, I have been able to slowly move it closer to 8pm but then day light savings time usually gets in the way just as I start feeling like the routine is working. Basically, I am tired of having no time to get other things done while also wanting to help my son sleep well. He also requires that I or my husband lay with him until he falls asleep so even if we get in bed by 8pm, he isn't falling asleep until 9pm or later at times.
What do I do? I would love to see him fall asleep at 7pm but how can I get him there? I have been told that cutting out naps during the day does the trick but. . . what usually happens is he gets worn out by 4pm or 5pm and drops for a nap regardless and then that throws off his nighttime sleep anyway. When this happens, he struggles to sleep until about 10pm or 11pm.
I wouldn't mind so much the late bedtime if he was able to lay by himself and go to sleep on his own but he won't. If I try to leave, he cries and follows me out. I will remain unscathed and guide him back to his bed, sit with him and rub his back for a few minutes and then leave. But usually he follows me out again and we do this 6-8 times until I crack and just lay with him.
Feeling very discouraged and hope for some suggestions.
For us... I do bedtime (i aim for 8pm too) and often fall asleep alongside my DS especially if he takes until 9pm or later to sleep, while my DH cleans up after dinner and does any other evening chore. My DS is 28m now. I never thought this would be my life, but accepting his needs and my desire for him to have a peaceful bedtime helped dissolve the resentment. So I suppose, my only suggestion would be acceptance and the belief that he will fall asleep without me someday in the near future.
Good luck mama!
Ps have you experimented with an earlier nap time yet? I think that might work for my DS, it's just not always practical for us to be home for an 11am nap.
Thanks for the response. Sometimes, just hearing that other people struggle with the same scenario helps me feel better.
We have experimented with different nap times and usually 11am is the time but lately it's been more like 1pm. I have noticed that the afternoon naps throw him off more than the morning ones but I also work full time and my mother-in-law watches him during the day. So nap time is not always the most consistent. Typically, she lets him play hard until he gets tired and falls asleep so that could be a range of times.
After posting, I was venting to my husband because last night was one of those nights when my son didn't fall asleep until 10pm. We talked about reviewing his routine and starting dinner earlier, then bath time, reading time etc. I am starting this tonight with the hope that we are at least heading up the stairs by 7pm and then we will go from there. I will keep you post.
I have noticed that a nap after 12:30 can really keep my son up late too. The past 3 evenings have been pretty good here. I think the difference has been that he was up from his mid day nap after about 90mins and the weather has been really lovely so we've been outdoors as much as possible. Also I started our nighttime routine about 20mins earlier which means that he has finished his bath at about 7:35pm. Sorry for sharing so much. It's just nice to tell someone that my child fell asleep by about 8:40pm for 3 nights 😃👍