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almost 4, seriously hyper

587 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  lovesea
my term, hyper. i'm with her all day. it wasn't always like this. she has a new baby brother, born in september. definitely "hyperness" has gotten worse since then. i always co-slept with her, and moved her to a toddler bed right next to my bed, after new baby was born. (i'm not comfortable with both kids in the bed with me. i can't turn over like i need to in order to rest; hence, she had to go in her own bed. i think this affects the quality/quantity of her sleep; she used to sleep almost all night; now it's up and down all night long, always wanting to fall asleep back on my bed.)

she gave up naps during my pregnancy. i suppose i should *insist* on her napping. like, she's not allowed to leave the room for one hour, maybe?

she talks non-stop. she's a flurry of activity all day. she does play great by herself, very imaginitive. sets up elaborate improvised stories and scenes for her dolls and toys using whatever materials are around. she is capable of playing alone like this for at least several hours at a time.

i have her in one activity a day, most days of the week. twice a week the activity is preschool (2.5 hours a day). she started preschool for the first time in january. teachers report that she fits right in, is a pleasure to be around, "it's like she has always been with us" (the whole school year, instead of newly transferred in).

can anybody tell me what to do? i should be limiting sugar, right? and limiting TV time? my husband and i discussed it tonight, and those were the two ideas i had. can anyone suggest other ideas?

ps: she loves her brother, never a hint of jealousy, the only problem i have in that regard is that it is hard for her to be quiet, i'm always asking her to be quiet, as he needs to sleep (and is a touchy sleeper, UGH!)

pss: i've been sick, actually we ALL have been sick, the past two weeks. i've been taking care of two sick kids, plus myself... and it's been a tough time. i have noticed that i'm yelling a lot. which i'm not proud of, i always tell her i'm sorry that i yelled, and that i always love her even when i yell. big trouble is: i'm noticing that SHE is yelling now too. when she starts raising her voice, the way i've been handling it is to stop talking altogether until she stops yelling, then answer her in a calm voice. will the yelling go away if i can control my yelling?

please, any help, i will appreciate. my husband said maybe she is in too many activities. but i've gotta have things for her to do, things that wear her out a bit. otherwise, it's too much being home all day with a new baby and an extremely active almost 4 year old. she seriously talks and asks me questions all day long. i take her seriously and try to answer all of her questions as best i can. but it is very very tiring for me, plus i'm holding the baby (or carrying him in a sling, but that too is hard work) all day long as well.

i guess i really really do need to get her to take that nap with me and the baby, if for no other reason than to break up the day and have that be the "thing" we do for a few hours. but i'm also always afraid that it will screw up our bedtime, which it often has. she's up at 6:30 or 7 am every day, which also just about kills me, b/c i'm getting by on very little sleep. do you think i should get her down for a nap sometime around noonish? bedtime for baby brother is 6 pm, and for her, i'm trying for 7 pm but settling for anything before 8 pm.

sorry this is so long, just wanted to add a few details in case anyone is wondering.

thanks for reading!
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Hugs! DS1 is almost 3.5 and also very busy. I think it's normal for them to be so inquisitive, and I think it's great that your DD plays by herself that long. DS won't and needs my attention all day long, so I understand, and no naps either! We try to have unstructured play outside at least once a day (weather permitting) and we don't do any organized activities. I found he was way worse after a class or preschool, so we're better off just doing our own thing at home. Also, try to get her involved with the baby. I've found that DS will coo at the baby with me or play peek-a-boo, and that it usually calms him down quite a bit. I love my son's boisterous nature - he's full of life, it's a handful, but I wouldn't have it any other way.
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I don't have a lot of advice, but I do feel your pain! I'm due in about a month with my second child, and my daughter, 4.5YO, has been really hyper lately. I think that some of it is due to the anxiety that the impending family changes are creating in her mind.

One thing that is really helping is being strict about bedtime. I find that if we're reading stories and turning off the light by 8:15, things go really well. If I let it go past that (like last night, when she was up until almost 9), that she gets really crazed, like she's trying to keep herself awake.

Another thing I've noticed--and this doesn't pertain to your situation directly, but might be associated somehow--is that she's better on the weekends than on school days. I work full time as a teacher, so she's in a full day preschool/daycare. School nights I pick her up at 4 pm, then go home and try to make dinner... and she's usually a handful then. I don't know if it's that she's too over-stimulated from her day, which is totally possible, or if I'm too stressed out from mine, which is just as possible.
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Sounds a lot like my 3 and a half year old. He never stops talking! Even when he's playing on his own he likes to give me a running commentary. Then there's the running up and down the corridor screaming - for fun! He stopped napping recently which works out for us because then he goes straight to sleep at night. If he naps it takes him at least an hour to drop off at bedtime. Have you tried having quiet periods at home. Ds loves music so when I'm putting his sister down for a nap he listens to relaxing music. We also have reading time twice a day. I also try to do something that requires us to sit at the table like drawing, jigsaw puzzles. Things like that tend to bring him down for a while. I try to make sure we get outside so he can have a run around and burn off some of that excess energy
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