Toddler sleep troubles – please help

June 3, 2011

I need your wisdom dear readers.

At the moment our evenings / nights go something like this:

4.30pm Kate gets grumpy and starts crying.

6pm Piran gets ready for bed, some nights has a bath, has his milk and goes to bed in his cot. Usually by 6.30pm. Most evenings he goes to sleep without a fuss.

7pm We attempt to cook and eat a meal. Usually eaten in shifts with one of us looking after Kate.

7.30pm Kate tends to have a bottle every three hours but it is different times each evening as she has not settled into a routine. We try and leave it three hours between feeds otherwise she doesn’t have enough at one feed and ends up snacking all evening which the health visitor said could be making her tummy worse. I am pretty sure that I can tell when she is crying because she is hungry or when it is just her ‘usual’ evening crying. Also, she tries to eat us if she is hungry. If that happens after 2 hours I will feed her.

10.00pm Kate has usually crashed out somewhere between 9.30pm and now and if we are lucky we will take her up and put her in her cot and get 1-2 hours sleep before her next feed.

10.30pm Piran wakes up crying. He is inconsolable until you take him into our bed where he is fine. He asks for cuddles and usually then goes go sleep horizontally across the bed with his feet in my back. I am then unable to sleep. This is not good!

I head downstairs to try and sleep on the sofa until Mr C brings Kate down to me when she wakes.

11pm-1am At some point Kate will wake up for a feed and I take her downstairs. Sometimes she drinks & goes back to sleep, other times she is awake for 2 hours.

At this point I give up sleeping in my own room and stay on the sofa.

3am-5am Kate will want another feed sometime around now. Usually we are unable to get her back to sleep before 5.30-6am when Piran wakes up demanding “muk and beebies”.

The day starts here.

So, it is hard work but I can manage the Kate part. However, the not managing to sleep in my own bed and if I do it not being at the same time as Mr C is really starting to take its toll. I miss my husband. So I really think that we need to tackle the Piran issue first.

It is not Kate’s crying that is waking him up because it is always after she has stopped.
He wakes at roughly the same time every night.
Could it be jealousy that the baby is in her cot in our room so he wants to sleep with us as well.
We are unable to put him back in his cot because he SCREAMS.
In the past we have let him cry and after one night it is usually solved, however he has developed this SCREAM and we just don’t have the energy at the moment. We just want sleep and an easy life.
He is still in a cot. We are considering changing it to a cot bed. Any advice?
If we do change it to a bed what about afternoon naps? Because he goes down fine at night but naps are usually a different matter with crying for 10 minutes or so before sleep. If he could get out of bed would he just play? I was planning on putting a gate on his door to stop him escaping from his room.

Any advice on how to tackle this will be gratefully received because I really want to knock this on the head and my brain cannot cope with anything more complicated than remembering my own name and what we are having for dinner.

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