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breathe, i'm just lazy. i can't fight the sleep-fighter, plus i think she got her daddy's night owl genes. i'd druther play (or goof around on the computer) than try to get a girl to go to sleep when she won't do it. just lazy...


p.s. i appreciated the poopage info, too. these things do take time...
 

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Right there with the poop being a very important detail relating to sleep!
ds was asleep by 9 tonight, but it took 1 1/2 hours. . .I was Queen AP for the first hour 15 minutes. It is HOT here and was 87 F in the bedroom. I was standing and swaying with him in fornt of the fan and he fell asleep several times only to wake when we tried to lay on the bed. The last time he woke and said sweetly, "mama read a book" I growled, "no go to sleep"
BUT HE DID!!
Breathe~ I'm so in on that book.
I do WOTH (thankfully part time since he was 5 months).. I did it full time for two months and I thought I die from missing him and lack of sleep. My heart is always wth ds, and my mantra is, "this will be over much sooner than I am ready"
 

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I did not get to say above that I did a lot of work on my attitude. I was way too wound up, and as Dh and I prepared to TTC, I knew that my attitude about bedtime could become a deal breaker I really didn't want to impose.

I tell myself she will fall asleep eventually...she will probably stay asleep long enough for me to get a good amount of rest...I am thankful she sleeps late in the morning and my lifestyle pretty much allows me to sleep as long as she does...I am thrilled she nurses for quite awhile before she's ready to get up.

I had a lot of anxiety about bedtime, and I've managed to let go of a lot of it. It helps to remind myself that there will be a day when I miss the closeness of this bedtime ritual.

It's not as out of control as it could be, and that may be because as AP as I am, I can also be pretty rigid when I have to be. If there really was a book, I would think more about that balance between AP and teaching your children they are part of a family (and more) and things must work most of the time for most of the people. I love focusing on Dd but it's got to be in the context of our life.

I have had back pain for quite awhile, which put a limit on how much walking/bouncing, etc., got done. So Dd is dependent on nursing to sleep but I don't have to do anything strenuous. Once we go to bed, we stay in bed, unless it's to go to the rocking chair. If I can't be lying in bed, at least I get to sit. Before she falls asleep, she is allowed two trips to the kitchen for a glass of water. Why two? Because she can count to two and that's all the bouncing up and down from bed my tired back can stand. I don't keep the water in the bedroom because it will be a source of fascination. I keep the fascination factor down by being quiet and "asleep" when it's time for Dd to sleep. We have had much the same sleep routine since she was tiny. She knows it well.

I really enjoy her lullabye CD (celtic), and the time to meditate on my day. It's a chance to "savor," the lack of which has been discussed on another thread. It's my only chance to Do Nothing.
 

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Breathe--I can totally commiserate (maybe we should get together and commiserate in person?)!!! Except in our house it takes 1 hour to 1.5 hours most nights, so he's down about 10:00. Together time for the 2 of us???? What the hell is that? If we wanted another (not sure yet), I sure don't know how we'd pull it off. Oh, did I mention Eli (just turned 2) is tryng to give up the nap as well? (except he clearly clearly needs it, so we're trying to make it happen, fighting w/him every day about it). So there goes any other together time, brief as it was (often only 1 hr). DH, in desperation, tried to close the door to his room the other day to encourage quiet/nap time (if we leave door open and leave the room, rather than lie down w/him, he just comes out to try to play), and Eli just played and tried to take the room apart. DH would go in periodically to tell him this was quiet time, and Eli just says "no, hee, hee" (literally), laughing in his face. Sigh, gotta love the highly verbal child.

I enjoy the first 10 minutes of laying down w/him for bedtime (cuddle time), but that's about it. Then it gets old and boring, plus he often hits and kicks us, which just sucks and gets us upset, and it's a bad cycle.
 

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So, yeah, I was thinking about this post at around 3am as I went from child to child pretty much all freaking night. I do this each and every night. Ds#2 nurses every hour + and ds#1 scratches his eczema and wakes up crying.

And, naptime. May I add that to the list?
I lay down w/Babe to nap while toddler screams at the door b/c I'm not w/him. 2x/day for this joy.

I am so g'darn freaking tired. I KNOW it's a stage, but I truly feel like I'm going to lose it.
And, yes, our night time routines take well over an hour laying in bed. This doesn't count the "getting ready for bed" time.
 

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OK, I love you ladies. I seriously thought I was the only one.

Mine was up until 2am and then woke up at 7 am. IT's noon now and no nap in sight....

edited to say: mine has never been easy to get to sleep, not in the car, not in the sling, not in a swing, bouncy chair, rocking in my arms, NOTHING has ever really helped us, not even nursing could get him down. Sleeping (or lack of it) has been the single most difficult part of parenting for me.
 

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I know I am a bit late to this thread, but I just had to post. I actually just printed off all of the messages for my Dh. We have a 21 month old champion sleep-fighter. We have a routine, he no longer nurses (I am 30 wks pregnant), consistent patterns to our day, lots of exercise, and it still takes about an hour of lying down with him every night - sometimes even longer.

I love Mothering.com - I know that maybe it is sick to love the fact that we are not alone in this, and that others have toddlers who also hate to go to sleep, but I can't help it, it makes me feel better.

Emma
 

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Naptimes are usually easier for us. My 16 month old doesn't like to go to bed either. Typically, it will take about 20 minutes on a good night then about 10 minutes for each time he wakes up (sometimes 3-4 times a night). We have had marathon session where it took 2 hours.

I put him to sleep by walking him in the sling. It would get very boring in the dark so I always go turn on the TV and walk back and forth in that room with all the lights out. I have a Maya Wrap so I put the tail over where any light can come in and he will usually go to sleep in 20 minutes. Lately, since I became pregnant I haven't been able to walk him that long. So after several difficult nights I discoved that I could walk him for about 5 minutes then nurse him about 5 minutes then walk him to sleep after that. If that doesn't work I have just started to be able to rub his back once I put him down and he will go to sleep. He has been in his own bed for several months and in his own room for about a month now. If he was still co-sleeping he would be tossing and turning all the time. He likes a lot of room.

Lately, I learned something good that really works for us. Making sure he gets good naps (he still naps 2 times a day) helps him go to sleep easier at night. For my son it takes longer for him to go to sleep at night if he is overtired.
 

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I'm not bored by it. Like Curious, I enjoy the time to listen to good music (I love our sleepy CDs) and mull over the day, etc. And on the nights when ds is in the mood for bonding, it's a ritual like no other. But, I start to get impatient thinking of all I have to do and when I get too relaxed with him, I'll fall asleep before the kitchen is clean to my satisfaction, before I've brushed, before I've checked e-mail or MDC
: AND when I do fall asleep with him before getting all thsoe done, the next day is harder b/c the housework is pilling up. . .
and some nights, when he is overtired, he hits me while fighting sleep and I don't enjoy that. . .
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by elismom
Together time for the 2 of us???? What the hell is that?
Ditto! I think that is the second biggest casualty after losing time to regroup and rest myself. Except we sometimes do get together time. Specifically, from 11pm-1am on a Friday or Saturday night, if we can both manage to stay up long enough. And what is our favorite together activity? Watching TV. Wheee. But what else do we feel like doing when it's so late and we've just wrestled a crazed animal to sleep, LOL?


Carol
 

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I just gave up on bedtime long ago. I figure that my kiddo is such a strong sleep fighter, I would rather let him stay up as late as he wants rather than struggle and fight with him and be miserable. My mom said I was the same kind of baby/kid.

Luckily for me, since weaning in Jan, DH has taken over primary bedtime resposibilities. This was crucial, as I teach night classes and don't get home until about 10:30. DS is still up waiting for me most nights (heck he was up until 12:30 tonight) but at least he is able to wind down a bit usually after I get home. DH gets him to sleep by reading "Poohsties" which are his madeup word for a series of Pooh books that we have.

Our biggest problem at this point is the lack of that together time, as mentioned before. DH goes to work in the a.m., comes home, we overlap for 15-20 min, I get home, he is doing the bedtime ritual and usually goes to sleep with DS, and I am here chatting with you ladies since everyone else is sleeping. We are going to have a schedule change in the fall as I will be going back to work fulltime, and we will have more family time. Our relationship has really suffered with this schedule.

Sometimes I am almost jealous of my friend who went the CIO route at 6 months and puts her happy, well-rested baby down in her crib at 7 p.m. each night (this still works for her, 8 months after starting). Down deep I know that this wouldn't have ever worked for my DS, but still...
 

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I will add that Dh time has indeed suffered. Dd finds him exceedingly fascinating, so all our attempts to lie down all together and whisper in the dark have been miserable failures. And Dd would wake up if I'd move out of contact - until she was about 19 months old. At last, when she is alseep, Dh can get a little time. Fatigue plus lack of contact time was really rotten.
 

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I can so commiserate with all of you. DS was a champion sleep fighter, beginning at the very beginning. He always slept well, he just could not transition to sleep well and fought it the whole way!

Now ds is 3 and for the passed 6 months bedtime has been the favorite time of day for us. Let me explain:

"Oh, did I mention Eli (just turned 2) is tryng to give up the nap as well? (except he clearly clearly needs it, so we're trying to make it happen, fighting w/him every day about it)."

I think that between 18 months and 2 there is a real need for setting limits and boundaries for sleep fighters. I also think that they are probably trying to drop naps and just don't know how to deal.

This was my son, at 2 he was resisting napping, yet seemed to really need a nap. Then at night he would resist sleep again.

Once I gave up the ghost and stopped trying to make him nap, life has gotten so much easier and ds goes to sleep between 7-8 pm and sleeps until 6-7 in the morning.

Here is what worked:

It took about a month to transistion out of naps....there were times he would fall asleep around 5 pm and that sucked - so I would try to be at a park or ourside or somthing around that time so that we could then do dinner and the whole routine at 6, so ds was ready for bed at 7.

Get strict with your nighttime routine. Do not deviate. Do not be afraid of your child's anger over the new limits (boundaries) just empathize that changes are hard but this is the best for everyone. (Geez, I just read that and I sound like a babywiser - eek. Remember we are talking about toddlers - not tiny babies!)

I nightweaned and also stopped nursing ds to fall asleep. We are still nursing todady and ds is 3 - so it can be done.

anyway - this is what worked for me and I totally realize that this may not work for everyone.

The point of all of this is that now bedtime is our favoriate time. So much that ds's favoriate pretend game is to pretend to go to sleep with his animals, doing the whole routine.

We've also really gotten into reading books at night as part of our routine and I just love this!

Good luck! I know how hard this is!
 

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When I started reading this thread it was 4:30 am on Saturday morning, and I was being kicked and having my breast pulled all over the place trying to get my sleep fighter to settle down. Took until 5:45am to actually get him to sleep.

I was SO glad to see this thread. I felt so alone...like the sentiment echoed above.."where is my easy AP baby". I have tried everything, but my son, like his parents
: , is a sleep fighter. Our "goal" bedtime is later than most...between midnight and 1am. dh gets home from work at a bit after 11pm, and likes to spend a bit of time before bed with my ds. Now, my dh has to go to bed before I get ds down because the sleep deprivation was killing him at work.

The time I made the mistake IRL to mention our bedtime struggless, all I would get was "babies are supposed to sleep from 7-7...just put him in the crib and walk away, he will eventually learn to fall asleep." There were so many things wrong with that I don't even know where to begin. (the least of which is the 7am part, lol).

I felt so alone because I couldn't talk about the problem IRL because of all the AP critisms and I felt like an AP failure because it wasn't blissful anymore. Even though I don't know about solutions now, I don't feel so alone.

Oh...and how do you keep a child awake. (not letting them sleep after a designated time so that they sleep through the night). My ds has basically "passed out" because he was so tired, wouldn't be roused back awake, and ended up just making the problem worse because he would wake up and be ready to go for another 7 hours, even though he fell asleep 2 hours before his previous bedtime. *sigh* Eventually, something has to work. I just hope it's soon.
 

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Yep Yep yep. I am there too. *Sigh* Only mine will be 3 in September. Sorry to break that part to you! I wish I could say it gets a whole lot better, but no, not for us anyway. My current bedtime problem is that she takes a late nap (about an hour), and then that lasts her until 10-11:00 (or later!) at night. Today she hadn't taken a nap by 4:00, so I tried to make her stay up without one (usually if she does not take one by 3, I do this, though I will say that *any* nap at any time usually makes her stay up late). Well, it is 5:30 right now and she has been asleep for about 30 minutes. She was screaming and I was going to snap if I did not put her to sleep.
Last night she had not had a nap all day, we had been at this carnival for 3 hours, she was absolutely dead tired, and it took me 1 hr of laying with her for her to go to sleep. She was sitting up with her eyes closing and falling over saying "I'm not tired, I want to read books" She tried everything under the sun for me to let her out of bed to (potty, water, food, movie, books, to call Grandma,etc etc) I don't let her up- she gets a sippy of water and 1 potty trip, that's it.
My problem is this inconsistent nap thing. Plus, I watch a friend's 5 mth old (the baby that sleeps thru the night and you just lay her on the bed and walk away for naps!!!!!! And, might I add, she does this with NO cry-it-out. Ugh!!) every a.m. from 6:30-11:00 or 12:00, and dd has toruble sleeping without me in the morning, so she gets up b/w 6:30-7:30 and she is still tired and SO grumpy, but I just can't go lay with her b/c I've got the baby.
So, yeah, I understand. The only thing I can say is I do getmore of a break (usually) after she (finally) goes to sleep b/c she usually stays in her own bed for 3-6 hrs before joining me (this has only happened in the last 6 mths or so). I really need sleep, plus some time to myself!!!!!
Good luck, they say it gets better eventually.
Sara
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Iguanavere

Get strict with your nighttime routine. Do not deviate. Do not be afraid of your child's anger over the new limits (boundaries) just empathize that changes are hard but this is the best for everyone. (Geez, I just read that and I sound like a babywiser - eek. Remember we are talking about toddlers - not tiny babies!)

Warning, This is long and may not be coherent, but I hope someone finds it worthwhile:

"Routine" seems to get a bad name around here sometimes. I-vere makes it clear she is not talking about routines for tiny babies, but there are ROUTINES, and then there are routines. Gentle rhythms to the day can provide cues that smooth out the rough spots.

After reading here I realize I have little to complain about. Most of my problem, I realized, was my anxiety that Dd would wake up again for hours, like when she was newborn. Once I talked sense to myself, that eventually she'll fall asleep and pretty much stay asleep (I haven't dreamed of nightweaning - nursing is why she stays asleep), and she doesn't wake up for the prolonged periods I used to dread.

I will admit here that we have what could be called a strict bedtime routine. It's nice family time for everyone, with sensory delights including bubble bath and music and massage and laughing. It's strict in that I march through it step by step the same way every night. And part of the routine has included a schedule, because Dd napped better on a schedule, and then slept better, than when we didn't have one. And with a less topsy-turvy course to our day, I napped better and felt better too. With a schedule I got to eat on a more regular basis, so I wasn't getting hypoglycemic.

I will admit here that I started this when Dd was a Tiny Baby. Because the nights were horrible and Dh and I had to do something. So I decided that I would set up this routine and funny thing, Dd took to it really fast, and did much better.

Now she understands this routine because with a few changes as her needs have changed as she's gotten older, it's all she knows. And I'm happy to say that no matter how wound up she seems, with rare exceptions she konks out by the time a certain song comes around on the lullabye CD.

There was some suggestion in other posts that AP creates these sleep trials and that's probably true. I am not saying CIO at all - let me be clear, but I am going to stick my neck out and say that routines sometimes get a bad name on these boards. I don't think telling our tiny babies that they get a bath and then naked timme, a massage and then a diaper and then lights out but you can nurse all you want for the rest of the night while I hold you, is the same as saying there's the crib, see you in the morning.

Another point on some of the gymnastics people go through to get kids to sleep. I have a bad back and Dd was a big baby. By 4 months, I could not walk her, and I could never do jiggles our bounces. She was very sensitive to my position - how she knew to cry when I sat and stop when I stood I didn't know. But one day she was just too heavy to walk. Of course I was not going to sleep train her as had been suggested to me, but I did not see the point of teaching a growing baby that she was going to be carried for hours on end. The sling did not work much for us, because after she fell asleep, we had the problem of getting her out of it without waking her up.

I sat in the rocker with her and said "I'll hold you, I'll rock you, you can nurse, I'll stay with you all night, but I cannot walk with you." She fussed quite a bit, when she cried I'd stand for a minute and sit down again . After that night she was happy in the rocker. So at least when she takes her time falling asleep, I'm comfortalbe and that makes a big difference. Instead of thinking of my aching neck, arms, and back, I could think about how pretty my baby was.

Now maybe all of this is her temperment, and has nothing to do with all my calculated measures to lull her to sleep. But I did want to make my points about routines having their place, even for young babies, and that holding the baby but not doing gymnastics is not the same as CIO.

There are many things about Dd that I can say are more likely due to her temperment than to my artful parenting, but for sleep I think my well thought out tactics have truly been helpful. Then again, maybe I'm wrong...I guess I just think it might be helpful for others to consider routines pretty early on, and give lots of thought to what alternatives to the walking and bouncing might be worth trying.
 

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I agree with the routine, the problem is, that sometimes things happen that break our routines, some by choice (staying late at a potluck) and some just bad luck (needing to poop but too tired to let it out, then it keeping ds up until he's too sleepy to not poop, you get the picture. . .) And it seems that once the routine is off few nights, it throws thigns off for a while. . .
My dh also has a really inconsistent work schedule, which is very hard on ds and often disrupts the bedtime routine.
Oh well. . .
 

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I did not say above (I wrote too much for one post already) that our "routine" can be moved back and forward as other life events permit. True, we are just getting into toilet requests that throw in another unpredictable factor. But even if we come home late from a night out, we still go through the Whole Thing. It takes awhile, but is well worth it, because it sends a strong signal to Dd's sleep center about what should happen next.

I guess that's part of the difference between a routine and a ROUTINE. The routine should work for everyone to make life better, not militarized.
 
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