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Will I regret helping DD fall asleep?

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#1 Grassisgreen

Posted 21 January 2020 - 09:04 PM

DD is 2.5 and struggling with falling asleep.

Why question is, my heart is saying pick her up and cuddle her in bed to help her fall asleep.

But DH and brain is saying this will create problems. That it might take just as long (1hr) for her to fall asleep, that then she might start waking in the night (once a week at the moment).

Some background. She is our youngest, and we haven’t Co slept with either child aside from a very few times when quite sick. She will be our last, and I can feel the baby years going. Which to be honest I’m totally fine with, aside from feeling like I ‘missed out’ on that time of holding them and comforting them.

My plan was to let her fall asleep in our bed then transfer her back to cot once asleep. At the moment she will fall asleep with lots of protest after about an hour, a but always asking us to sit with her which I give in to sometimes (I know probably making it worse). I just feel so sad hearing her cry on and off. Will I regret it?

#2 K.heather

Posted 21 January 2020 - 09:09 PM

Just think of it this way, you are not hurting anyone, and I'm sure you won't still be doing it when bub is 18.

#3 IamtheMumma

Posted 21 January 2020 - 09:10 PM

Will she fall asleep in your bed?

I cosleep so have an obvious bias but if you'd still have the same hassles in your bed as you do with her in hers, keep her in her room. Alternatively, if she falls asleep in your bed and you can transfer her into her cot, go for it.

I admit I am savouring the cuddles with DS at night. He's my last child and he's 5 so he'll make noises to move into his own bed soon. I will miss snuggling into him and having that warm, bonding time.

#4 CallMeFeral

Posted 21 January 2020 - 09:50 PM

The time you may conceivably regret it is when you're training to sleep back in her bed again. But chances are by then she'll be older, able to be incentivised/rewarded, and it won't be nearly as unpleasant as listening to her cry now.

If any of the feared outcomes happen, you can go back to your old plan. If she's old enough to understand, you can explain to her that you're trying it out. So test it, and see if it works, if it has unexpected downsides, go back to what you were doing.

I'm probably biased though. I have 3 children in the bed.

#5 xx1stxx

Posted 21 January 2020 - 09:50 PM

Don't do it!

1. We let our DS's fall asleep on fold out sofas in the lounge then transferred them to bed.
2.  We then tried letting them fall asleep in our bed before transferring.
3.  We put them in their own beds but had to lay down with them for up to an hour.
4.  Put them to bed and sat outside their doors until asleep

All we were doing was replacing one bad habit with another.  

I ended up getting an IT mate to rip the audio from a heap of their favourite movies i.e nemo, thomas, alvin and the chipmunks etc, put a CD player in their room and they would happily fall asleep listening everynight.

They are 10 & 12 now and still go to sleep listening to the radio, only on real low, but can also fall asleep with out it.

#6 Caribou

Posted 21 January 2020 - 09:54 PM

Two kids here.

Child 1: only co-slept from 4am as she likes to wake up that early. Otherwise she slept in her own bed. (She was in a king single from 14mths) we’d sit next to her in bed, read a book lights out. Refuse to talk to them and read our own book on phone. Kid knew we meant business. - go to sleep. Did this until she was 5. Slept all night in her own bed. But it was fine for us bc 20 mins was nothing. She stopped needing someone to stay with her when she was five. She’s 8 now.

Child 2: co-slept with me until he was one as he was a horrendous sleeper woke frequently. Moved him to a king single bed at 1 so we all had more room if I needed to join him in his bed. We read him a book and he too is asleep by 20mins. Used to get up from 1yr to 2.5yrs old once or twice a night and hop into our bed. He was easy to sleep with. Didn’t kick as much. He’s just shy of three. Only stopped getting out of bed when I removed nappies from overnight sleep.

Point? Your DH is wrong. You’re not creating bad habits. You won’t regret it. They’re only little for so long. And it’s not forever.

What will work is consistency and routine with bedtimes. If it’s always the same, the kid will get on with the program faster and everyone is happy.

Edited by Caribou, 21 January 2020 - 09:55 PM.

#7 Prancer is coming

Posted 21 January 2020 - 10:08 PM

I am not into cosleeping, but have no problem lying with kids until they are sleep.  I remember reading something ages ago about putting kids down where they will be waking up, so they don’t wake up confused.  Plus I would worry the transfer might wake them sometimes.

My biggest problem was lying with my kid did not mean they actually went to sleep or did not cry.  And co sleeping will not necessarily fix a bad sleeper or a full of drama bedtime.

if whatever you choose to do does become a problem, then you fix it.  Our number 3 started sneaking into our bed in the middle of the night.  At first I could not be bothered doing anything about it and did not mind it, as I slept.  However, DH who rises early for work did have an issue with sleep from it.  It really was not that painful to fix.

#8 Bereckii

Posted 21 January 2020 - 10:09 PM

Another idea for the mix. This idea will not work for every family, but some families might be okay with it.

- Move her to a single bed.
- At bed time lie in bed with her to read a story.
- Then say it's lights out sleeping time.
- Stay (lying in bed with her) until she falls asleep (use headphone to listen to a podcast or a small light so you can read yourself). No talking. Just silently waiting for sleep.

Obviously this is only a good idea if you don't mind spending the time lying there waiting for sleep (completely understand that you might not be up for this)

- you do get to spend that snuggle time with her (without needing to transfer to her from one bed to another after she has fallen asleep)
- she gets used to falling asleep in her own bed.

Obvious drawbacks: it makes the bed time routine a bigger (more time consuming) job for you.

#9 Quick hedgehog

Posted 21 January 2020 - 10:14 PM

My motto was always, do what works for you NOW.  

The thing that you fear MAY happen in the future, might never eventuate, in which case you have put everyone through pain for no reason.  

If the situation you fear DOES eventuate, you will deal with it when that happens.

Find the solution that works for you right now, and continue to do it until it no longer works. Then come up with a new solution.

It really is that simple. Don't let anyone talk you into doing something purely on the basis that it might create a bad habit because chances are, it won't.  And if it does, you will deal with it then.  Don't make your lives more difficult now, on the off chance that you will have to fix something in the future.

I lay with my son while he fell asleep when he was little. It was what he needed. Eventually he grew out of needing it.

#10 Bereckii

Posted 21 January 2020 - 10:25 PM

Everything Quick Hedgehog said.

There is no "right" way. There is the way that works for you and your family. And that changes over time because the parents and/or child are ready for it to evolve.

#11 purpleblaze

Posted 21 January 2020 - 11:03 PM

At sleep school they said it's the parents job to calm the child, and the child's job to fall alseep unaided.  I'm a big believer in teaching them to self settle.  We did this with DS2 (3rd child now 3yrs) at 5 months and have had a blissful time ever since.  He still comes into our bed every so often in the middle of the night but the bedtime routine is smooth sailing.

I agree with the previous poster who said put them to sleep where they will wake up - it creates consistency.  Lay next to them (say on the floor if they are in a cot) and just remain still and quiet, no eye contact until they fall asleep.  I did this with DS1 which took a longer time to settle than DS2 with a different technique (gentle CIO).  Try not to chop and change techniques too soon.

#12 Ellie bean

Posted 21 January 2020 - 11:22 PM

I don’t think you will regret it
And if it becomes untenable you can stop then
My DH thinks I baby our kids too much at bedtime, tbh I probably do but, you know, they are in fact my babies and I don’t regret it thus far!

#13 SplashingRainbows

Posted 22 January 2020 - 03:54 AM

We stay with our kids while they fall asleep, with the child in their own room always.
However by that age they’re in king singles (more room for me to lay next to them).
If this is new behavior has she outgrown the cot?

#14 EsmeLennox

Posted 22 January 2020 - 04:02 AM

I’d put her in a bed and lay with her there. I did a mix of everything with my three. Guess what? They’re all teens now and go to sleep on their own!

Do whatever feels ‘right’, I reckon. Some kids just need that extra security... there’s nothing wrong with that.

#15 Expelliarmus

Posted 22 January 2020 - 05:36 AM

I didn’t regret it. Not saying it was easy, I didn’t enjoy much about trying to get my young children to sleep, but it didn’t last forever. Felt like sitting in the end of DS’s bed until he was asleep lasted forever - but it didn’t!

My first thought was ‘time for a bed’ as well though. As much as anything else, by 2.5 they are only going to get too big to transfer successfully to a cot and it won’t work because the transfer will inevitably wake her.

None of mine have needed me to sit with them to go to sleep since they were about 4yrs despite how much of the previous 7 years I’d had to sit with, rock, pace, pat or cuddle them. They are champion at it now! (19,18 and 16)

#16 Bono25

Posted 22 January 2020 - 05:44 AM

Do what you need to. To be honest, I'm rather envious of the one hour sleep time, dd stays awake until 11 some nights. I liked to play abc classic fm, or the new kids listen. It had some really nice settle music which sends me to sleep. A bed might help, so you can lie down with her, or sit with her and read a book until she settles.

#17 newmumandexcited

Posted 22 January 2020 - 06:19 AM

We lie with all three of our kids ages 5 3 3. Yes I do regret it but not when they fall asleep. I’ll figure something new out when the cost outweighs the benefits.

For now I’m all about getting them to sleep fast so I get a break.

#18 TheGreenSheep

Posted 22 January 2020 - 06:41 AM

I’m going to look at this from another angle, why is she fighting sleep for an hour? Is she ready to drop her day sleep and transition to no sleeps? What time does she get up, go to bed, could that need changing? Is she still in a cot and ready to move to a bed?

I still laugh at the times when DH would lie on the bed beside DS1 waiting for him to fall asleep, then DS would toddle out to tell me dad was asleep.

#19 Caitlin Happymeal

Posted 22 January 2020 - 07:23 AM

It's  really fluid issues.

We have twins, 10 years old now. One was a horrendous sleeper as a baby and we had to settle her by either lying on the couch with her on our tummy then transferring, co sleeping as she got a bit older, or eventually going into her room every night until she fell asleep. By 5 she was totally fine on her own - she just grew out of it.

Her sister... well... she had been a fabulous sleeper most of her life, until around 6, when she was diagnosed with ASD/ADHD, and started becoming extremely anxious. Unfortunately, her anxieties got worse and worse and worse, so for the last 3-ish years, DH has been turfed to another room and she's co-slept with me. Recently, and with the help of her psychologist, we've transitioned to an air mattress on the floor, and then the other night, that got a leak, so she's now back in her bed, but needs me (And only me, DH won't do, apparently 🙄) to lie with her, with a special playlist (bless you, Spotify and Google nest...) to fall asleep. So we are getting there. I just take my phone and make it clear that I'm not there to have a chat, she needs to try to relax and go to sleep.

My point is, each child is different, and I don't believe in the phrase "creating a rod for your own back" when it comes to sleep - some just need a little extra help. And it can fluctuate as they go through different phases. Do what your kiddo needs at this time. It will change, it will pass. There are some great points above too, like day naps and whether she's ready to drop one, getting her a bed vs a cot etc.

#20 Etta

Posted 22 January 2020 - 07:25 AM

I would cosleep. Even if it takes another hour for her to fall asleep at least you may fall asleep in that time. I would let her stay then you can all just fall asleep together. If it worries your DH then he can move beds.

#21 newmumandexcited

Posted 22 January 2020 - 07:33 AM

View PostTheGreenSheep, on 22 January 2020 - 06:41 AM, said:

I’m going to look at this from another angle, why is she fighting sleep for an hour? Is she ready to drop her day sleep and transition to no sleeps? What time does she get up, go to bed, could that need changing? Is she still in a cot and ready to move to a bed?

I still laugh at the times when DH would lie on the bed beside DS1 waiting for him to fall asleep, then DS would toddle out to tell me dad was asleep.

I would agree with this - when mine are taking an hour to fall asleep, it’s either that they haven’t burnt enough energy that day, or they need to drop the nap.

#22 Soontobegran

Posted 22 January 2020 - 07:45 AM

There is no right or wrong.
Those saying "don't do it" really can not advise what is right for your particular family's dynamic.
I had 3 who slept independently and the last 2 who slept with us .
By the time they were in prep ( aged 6 ) they were well able and happy to go to sleep and wake up in their own beds.

My advise is to maximise your sleep whatever it takes and if that means having a child asleep in your bed then as far as I am concerned it is a no brainer. I had to get up for work at 5am after getting to bed about 1am so being up and down attempting to 'teach' a child to sleep in their own bed was never going to work.
If you can not get sleep with your child in your bed then perhaps a sleep school may work.
I had grand children who were not happy in their bed or any other bed for that matter......they benefited from a very family friendly stint at sleep school.

By the time they were all about 7 I had far more trouble getting them out of bed than into it.

Edited by Soontobegran, 22 January 2020 - 07:46 AM.

#23 seayork2002

Posted 22 January 2020 - 08:07 AM

DH had to pat DS's back while he was laid in his cot a few times until he was 18months or so, but we stuck to our bedtime routine 99% of the time til DS was a little older and this seemed to help DS. So all I can advice is pick what works for you and stick with that, I think DS likes the consistency and sure people can pick this apart but it work and he slept for 12 hours straight most nights

And yes I will add this was for my son I am not saying it will work for all but again we felt better with a standard routine

Edited by seayork2002, 22 January 2020 - 08:08 AM.

#24 ~Jolly_F~

Posted 22 January 2020 - 08:18 AM

Team do whatever works.

Only one of ours co slept, she sleep with us most nights until she was 5ish, often still sleeps with me when DH is away.

We needed to sleep and she had always been anxious about sleeping, taking a long time to sleep, sometimes 3 or 4 hours. We did what we had so we had a more peaceful household. Melatonin has helped now she is older.

At her age I would probably look at ditching her cot too and getting her own bed - at least then if someone needs to sleep somewhere, they can use that or you can lay with her in that bed.

#25 Grassisgreen

Posted 22 January 2020 - 08:47 AM

Thank you, very reassuring hearing all the different scenarios that have worked for people.

She isn’t having her day nap anymore so I don’t think that’s the problem. I think she just wants the company and comfort as she falls asleep.

We have avoided moving her to a bed because we are worried it will be impossible to keep her in her bed. But I think it’s time. The bed we have for her is too little for one of us to got but I could put a mattress next to it for awhile.

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