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Old 09-21-2012, 09:17 PM   #1
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Toddler just lies in bed awake?

Please help me get my daughter to sleep at a reasonable hour?

We returned from vacation over a week ago and, since our return, DD (2.5 y) doesn't seem to be able to settle at night. At first, we chalked it up to jet lag, but she wakes at the correct time in the morning and naps at the correct time as well. We had bedtime at 8, but she wasn't falling asleep until 10:30 or later, so we tried moving bedtime to 8:30. No dice - she will lie quietly and not sleep till all hours - last night it was after ten when I gave up and went to bed - she was still awake when I fell asleep.

Here's our routine: 30 min warm bath, "bedtime noise" (a soft bell alarm), potty, snuggle with Mommy or Daddy for 30 min, then she needs to either sleep or lie quietly in our bed by herself. She will do that, but after 20-40 minutes she gets up to look for us, ask for water, go potty, etc. We put her back to bed and she repeats the same process. Tonight, she decided around 9:45 that she wanted to move to the guest room bed for some reason. We've tried leaving the lights on in case she's become afraid of the dark, we've tried warmer blankets, pillow or no pillow, different sleepytime toys.

Things we've changed recently:
-The 30min limit - given the choice, she'll lie awake with one or both of us for hours, and DH and I aren't getting any "us" time so we added that rule.
-Bedtime - in the summer, her bedtime was 9 because it was still light out at 8. She was generally asleep by 9:30.
-Expecting - We told her we are having a baby before she and I went on vacation, and she's been reading about being a big sister.

She's very verbal, but we can't get her to express why she doesn't want to or can't fall asleep

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Old 09-21-2012, 09:48 PM   #2
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Re: Toddler just lies in bed awake?

I don't have much advice. She's still pretty young. My DD was born 8/10 and lately she's been staying in bed awake for an hour to an hour and a half every night. Sitting/standing/bouncing in her crib. She used to fall asleep great. Bedtime is 8pm. We haven't changed anything lately.

It could be the change of seasons, or a phase or something. Hopefully she will learn that when she's in bed it's time to close her eyes. Maybe cut out a nap or shorten it a little each day and see if that helps. She may finally be at that age where she truly doesn't need a nap.

Good luck.
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Old 09-22-2012, 03:12 PM   #3
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We just don't battle sleep time with our 3.5 and 2 year old DDs. We enforce bed time where they have a choice to sleep, read books or sing. They must stay in bed and be quiet but those are our only rules. We have found they go through stages. Sometimes they fall asleep quickly other times they are awake for hours before they sleep. So as far as getting her to sleep advice I have non but maybe a few choices of bedtime alone activities will keep her in bed and she will sleep when she is tired.

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Old 09-22-2012, 03:27 PM   #4
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Re: Toddler just lies in bed awake?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamie714 View Post
We just don't battle sleep time with our 3.5 and 2 year old DDs. We enforce bed time where they have a choice to sleep, read books or sing. They must stay in bed and be quiet but those are our only rules. We have found they go through stages. Sometimes they fall asleep quickly other times they are awake for hours before they sleep. So as far as getting her to sleep advice I have non but maybe a few choices of bedtime alone activities will keep her in bed and she will sleep when she is tired.
DD is just turning 2 and this is what we do.

She's always been this way though. She'd talk to herself in the crib at 6months old for an hour. I'd think she wasn't tired, but she would basically insist upon being left alone in her crib. I think she wanted the alone time.

if she's not being particularly cranky or having other issues the next day, I wouldn't be overly concerned, personally.
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Old 09-22-2012, 03:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EmilytheStrange

DD is just turning 2 and this is what we do.

She's always been this way though. She'd talk to herself in the crib at 6months old for an hour. I'd think she wasn't tired, but she would basically insist upon being left alone in her crib. I think she wanted the alone time.

if she's not being particularly cranky or having other issues the next day, I wouldn't be overly concerned, personally.
She seems fine, I'm really ok with her playing quietly or whatever in bed. However, since she is awake, DH and I can't do anything intimate. She sleeps in our bed and we usually DTD in the guest room across the hall, but she can easily open the doors and I just feel weird doing that with her awake. We basically sit around the house twiddling our thumbs and doing chores to kill time, assuming I don't give up and go to sleep anyway.
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Old 09-22-2012, 07:42 PM   #6
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Dd did the same thing about 2.25. It lasted a few
months, we changed to a letter bedtime, still the same results. In the meantime, she stopped napping and now on most nights will fall asleep within 30 minutes, but there are still the 2 hour nights. For us, we made a big deal of her staying in her bed. Told her she could read, sing, watch the fish lamp or whatever, but she had to be in her bed and quiet. If she gets out of bed repeatedly, we turn off the fish light (keep the hall light on so it's not totally dark) and after 20 minutes of staying in bed, we will turn it back on. Twice we've turned it off and she's been asleep before we turn it back on. If its a rough night, we tell her we will come check on her in so many minutes. That way she isn't calling for us, but knows we will be back. We only had to do that for a few nights and then some every now and then.

Good luck! It's so hard to find the right routine and time!
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Old 09-22-2012, 07:50 PM   #7
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Both of my girls have done that since they were infants. Some times they fall right to sleep, sometimes it takes hours. As long as they are in bed being quiet I dont worry about it.

Maybe try to get in some extra exercise an hour or so before bed? As far as dtd I guess Im not much help there either b/c dh and I will just lock the door(of which ever room we need to use lol) and go. After dd1 it took a while but we figured sometimes the best time for us just happened to be when she was awake.
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Old 09-22-2012, 10:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leiiki

She seems fine, I'm really ok with her playing quietly or whatever in bed. However, since she is awake, DH and I can't do anything intimate. She sleeps in our bed and we usually DTD in the guest room across the hall, but she can easily open the doors and I just feel weird doing that with her awake. We basically sit around the house twiddling our thumbs and doing chores to kill time, assuming I don't give up and go to sleep anyway.
It might just be time to get creative with intimacy or be willing to lock the door to the guest room, assuming you could still hear her if needed. We now have no problem with dtd with kids awake we just "hide from them" so to speak.

Or like someone else mentioned about their kids dropping naps. Maybe she is ready to drop or shorten her nap.

Sorry no better advice as ours are awake a long time too. Even after asleep we still have no guarantee that they won't come strolling out to get a drink or go potty.

The joys of having little ones. Wouldn't trade it for anything.
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Old 09-22-2012, 10:31 PM   #9
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Does she get another 30 minutes of cuddling after she gets up?
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Old 09-23-2012, 08:46 AM   #10
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Does she get another 30 minutes of cuddling after she gets up?
Do you mean in the morning, or when she comes out at night? At night, we just ask her what she needs and then set her back in bed. In the morning, she can snuggle as long as she wants.
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