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I am putting this here since I am used to sharing bed time with stbx and now I am going it alone so I need help from you wise mamas. Any tips for me? Dd#1 has always been difficult to get to sleep. She is just over 2 and has stopped taking naps - she stopped at 18mo. Stbx is usually the person to put her to sleep and she is out in like 5 minutes. For me it's more like 2 hours - and I am not exaggerating. It has gotten worse since dd#2 and now that I am doing it completely by myself it's impossible. I expect ot tp be nuts since there is a lot going on but I am frustrated, Here is our normal routine:<br><br>
Dinner (5ish)<br>
Bath<br>
Books<br>
3 stories I make up<br>
Lights out<br><br>
She nightweaned herself when I was pregnant. She wants me to pat her back like they do at day care or to cuddle her like I used to or to walk her around like stbx does. It is OK to do this stuff when I have his help with the baby but now I am finding it impossible to meet both kids needs. They are not tired at the same time so if I do pat Kiera the baby ells since she is not moving around. If I get up with the baby Kiera screams. I just feel like I am never going to be able to get her to sleep...How do you Mamas do it?
 

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no idea but this was a huge reason for me not leaving my dh.... what would I do at bedtime???<br>
I look forward to the answers.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2"><br><br>
Oh mama.... been there and just so you know - it gets easier. You will find your own way. It will take some time, but you will find a way to meet everyone's needs.<br><br>
I don't really have any specific suggestions just wanted to offer encouragement.<br><br>
I can't remember specifically how I did it. I just remember trying to nurse dd while ds was climbing out of his crib.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2">
 

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I'm not a single mama- but dh worked overnights when ds1 was a newborn. The only way I could get them to sleep at the same time was to either rock dd when ds was asleep in the swing or nurse ds on my side and have dd lay on my other side and rock her that way. They are 23 mos apart.
 

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Do you have the lights off in the rest of the house? That really helped me with getting my boys to settle down.<br><br>
Something that I added into the ritual for the older boys (and eventually the youngest) was right before we start all the other bed time rituals we all snuggle up on the couch and drink bed time tea together (Bed time tea is Trader Joe's brand...we also use Sleepy time tea and Organic Nighty Night tea depending on what is available) It helps ease into that calm state that we need to be in to go to sleep.<br><br>
My younger two are 19 months apart. Since the youngest was born (and I split up with thier dad when the youngest was 6 weeks old so pretty much all of our rituals came about with me as single mommy)I have slept with one of them curled up on either of my arms, cuddled up...in the beginning this was so I could nurse the baby and keep my middle son from jumping up and getting out of bed. My oldest sleeps on a top bunk (the bottom bunk is a full size bed,just barely room for all of us!!)<br><br>
One of the major keys has been keeping in the middle of the boys because if they lay down together it might start out all cute and cuddly but they get giggly quick!<br><br>
Also, unless you really need to get up and do somethng afterward give yourself permission to go to sleep with them! Not only do you need the extra rest as a single mama the kids can sense it when you are trying to stay awake and will often not go to sleep as easily.<br><br>
In the beginning it was really hard getting the kids in to bed and getting them to sleep. The older two were used to waiting up so they could see thier dad before they went to sleep and they were not happy that I made them go to bed early once we split up. Some nights I would put them to bed and they would still be talking 2 hours later. And some nights I really despaired! But within a couple months it went from that to they were asleep within 15-30 minutes, and now 10-15 minutes is the norm....with the occasional frustrating night that they are up for an hour (usually when they can sense I have something to do when they fall asleep)
 

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I am a soon to be divorced mom of 2 boys 25 months apart. (stbx has never helped much in this area so I can't see much changing for me)<br>
My suggestion would be to turn out the lights before you telll your made up stories. Tell them in the dark insteed. I sing 3-5 songs in dark to my boys. The time in the dark with me still there seems to really settle them in for the night.
 

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I agree, we usually tell made up stories in the dark right before we drift off to sleep too.<br><br>
Actually I let each of the boys make one up and then I tell the last one <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I never had any bedtime help either- not on a consistent basis, anyway.<br><br>
I honestly can't remember what I did when I was newly single with a 1yo and a 2.5yo. I know the routine changed over time- from the 3 of us snuggling in my bed to having a routine and then putting them together in their bedroom (only to have them join me before the night was over anyway) and we kept on adjusting things to make it work. I know I put both girls to bed at the same time- it was just impossible for me otherwise.<br><br>
By the time I was single for the 2nd time, the girls were in a fairly regular bedtime routine for school and I only had one baby to worry about. Again, we kept things flexible, the girls were in my room a lot, though I couldn't fit all 4 of us comfortably in my bed.
 
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