Remember this post over here – Tough Love – and our attempt at getting Ethan to sleep through the night normal-ish?!  Well…let’s just say that we had very high hopes then…

Since then, we have made a huge improvement on the sleep front and Ethan has been sleeping much better.  At that stage, we were clutching onto the idea of it taking 21days (or whatever the experts say) to break a habit and that in a few weeks time, we’d be laughing at all of this and waking up all lovey dovey like a “normal family”, well rested and smiling because Ethan would be sleeping through the night.  A lifetime Months later (I met the lady mid-July!!), we are streaks ahead of where we were – that I will definitely admit to – but we still have a child who doesn’t sleep through the night.  In fact, I feel like we’ve move several steps back.  The sleeping is better at night on most nights, but now we have an issue at bedtime.  Ethan’s never given us issues going to bed.  Our routine was a few good night stories (this has change to tv lately – perhaps that’s making him too active??) followed by the distribution of dummies to both Ethan and his bear, good night hugs and kisses to daddy and then mummy, I tuck him into bed and he sleeps.  So we’ve had this down pat, the issues always been the staying asleep that’s the problem. 

Since our PE trip where Ethan’s sleeping routine was thrown out the window for a grand total of four nights (nights people, not weeks?!), we’ve had issues with him going to bed as well.  Now I know that all kids go through the “jumping off the bed” phase, but Ethan’s been in a “big boy bed” since 15months old and has already gone through this “phase” a few months ago.  It’s no longer a phase now and it’s definitely not funny.  Every.single.night (for over a month) at bedtime, he jumps out of his bed and walks to the lounge.  Some nights, he jumps out once or twice.  Most nights, this back and forwarding lasts for more than half an hour.  We go from sternly telling him that it’s bedtime and he needs to go back to bed, to marching him in silence and sometimes, the hubster (at a wits end and much to my dismay) even gives him a few paddywacks on his bottom.  I find that if I shout at him, he generally gets upset and cries a bit but then usually falls asleep without any more walkabouts.   This seems to work but I really don’t want to do this every night.  I don’t want to be the monster and I definitely don’t want Ethan going to sleep in tears every night.  Nana seems to think that this is just a phase that he’ll get out of and keeps telling me that one plus is that he’s not crying or throwing a tantrum but seriously, this is just not a joke or a game anymore.  How do I get Ethan to get over this???!!!!!!!

On the sleeping front, we’ve had quite a few full nights’ rest including two consecutive nights last week and two this week – a bonus that he slept through the night before the public holiday and we woke up well rested and all smiles on Tuesday – but wow!…last night and the night before were shocking.  We’re seriously back to square one.  Besides the endless going-to-bed issues, mister’s also waking up constantly in the middle o the night and the last two mornings, he’s been up at 3am unable to go back to bed.  This is just crazy!  When is this child going to sleep through the night?  Why didn’t the tough love thing work the way it was supposed to??  I’ve had close on 22months of not sleeping through the night and it’s really starting to kill me now.  Does anybody have any suggestions???  I’m thinking that I should write a book about how we broke tough love, surely there’s other people who are in the same boat as me – how do we get out of this never ending cycle 😦  Perhaps I should start a “breaking tough love support group”??  Thank goodness for weekends – I’m SO going to have a 2hour nap on Saturday AND Sunday when Ethan sleeps – need to get those energy levels back up!!!!!

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5 responses »

  1. Eva Coghlan says:

    Hey Jo, I know I don’t have children but I have spent a lot of time with them and I have watched super nanny a lot and the method that I have found that seems to work the best is the rapid return method. I’m not sure if you will find info online on how to achieve this successfully but it’s similar to what you have been doing already. First step is what you usually do (minus the tv). When he gets put the first time you remind him that it’s bed time and return him to bed ( no good night kisses etc here), 2nd time you just say bed and walk him to bed and leave him after that you say nothing and just keep marching him to bed. Key here is try to avoid eye contact… It’s supposed to be fool proof and will take a couple nights but it should work. I don’t think this is something he will grow out of if you just leave it. I personally feel that if you don’t learn to sleep properly as a child you won’t sleep well as an adult… But that’s just my theory…. Hope this helps Jo! Lotsa love, Ev

  2. michelle says:

    Shame Jodi! Super hectic! I don’t know how you’ve managed to stay sane this long 😦 we had a “honeymoon week” of Kent sleeping from 7pm to 4am but then – sods law- he go sick for 2.5 weeks and his sleeping has been worse than ever since then, with a 30min fight getting him down and then if we lucky he sleeps until 11pm – which he has now decided is a new feeding time (!!!) – and he can be up every 40mins from then until his 3am feed and is then up between 4 and 5am for the day. Thankfully this last week he only stirs at 9pm then up at 11:30pm and 3am – but still pretty tiring! SOOO if you find any brilliant solutions – let me know!

    Just to let you know apparently TV before bed can cause probs re falling asleep and quality of sleep as the light and movement encourages the brain to be in an “alert state”. My OT friend also says this is a no-no from a sensory perspective. So maybe try to avoid it for a bit? X

    Thinking of you tired mamma x

  3. […] body can’t.  It doesn’t know how to sleep anymore!!  I tried the tough love thing and we broke it.  Well, in my opinion we did.  I guess I just wasn’t strong enough.  I wasn’t comfortable to […]

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