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Old 06-17-2008, 08:19 AM   #1
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Exclamation Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

My best friend in the whole world has a 3 1/2 year old little girl, and has started having sleeping issues. She is in a big girl bed in the room right across the hall from her mom...her mom and dad put her to bed every night, read her books, sing to her, give her hugs, kisses and love. During the day the mom is very stable, she is a SAHM and always has taken wonderful care of her, and the little girl now goes to bed at 9:00-10:00 at night and she usually starts waking up 2-3AM for the first time, she wake up 5 times a night anywhere from 30 minutes - 1 hour every single time. She cries and says she's scared, no one loves her. She has a night light, her door is open, no cokes (ever), no naps, no sugar after 5PM. They have tried sticker reward charts, and at the end of the week she gets a prize, they have tried punishments, they have tried EVERYTHING...

WWYD next?! I feel horrible for her, my friend is exhausted and at her wits end...help

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Old 06-17-2008, 08:44 AM   #2
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

i personally think thats pretty late to put her to bed. My 3 1/2 yr old goes to sleep by 7 (8 if we have had company, etc) and he sleeps until at least 7. Thats the only thing i can think of, is put her to bed earlier
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Old 06-17-2008, 12:32 PM   #3
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

If my 3 year old ds doesn't get a short nap, he sleeps so much worse at night. When he does get up, I usually rock him for a few minutes and then put him back to bed. When my girls were that age, I'd often just stick them in bed with me. Whatever allowed me more sleep, I did!
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Old 06-17-2008, 12:43 PM   #4
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

I have a 3 yr old, and if she doesn't get a nap then she falls asleep while getting ready at the normal bedtime (nap or not) at 8-8:30pm. Then she wakes 3-4 times that nite. You'd think if they were so tired they'd sleep like a rock right? nope. When my kids are over tired they wake all nite, and even have issues going to bed a tthe allotted time. My 4.5 yr old gets super hyper when over tired. I now make sure my 3 yr old get a 1-1 1/2 hour nap in the afternoon. My oldest doesn't usually nap but has quiet time in her room.

Also when I read, sing, let them have that extra sip of water they don't really need, they are just procrastinating and have a harder time getting to sleep and wake more.

We started doing books at nap time and during the day. Nite time is Pj's, brush teeth, hugs and kisses and that's it.
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Old 06-17-2008, 12:53 PM   #5
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

she could also have nite terrors. My 4.5 yr old often has nite terrors and daddy gets up and explains it's a dream and talks with her about it a bit and then back to bed. He's less patient than I am and won't baby her too much, but is a nice presence to discuss the nitemares.

It could also be attention. My oldest will say that no one loves her when she's in trouble, or if we ask her to play upstairs if we are having a discussion and need the kids out of the way for a few min. The first couple of times it broke my heart, then it annoyed me because she knows we love her and it was her way to get us to feel so bad we'd let her do what she wants.

Negative attention is still attention. maybe try laying her down putting the covers over her and walking out without a word. She'll cry and it's heartbreaking but I had huge issues with #1 at about age 2.5.. Dh was deployed and her life was so rocked by so many changes that she was up all nite. I had no sleep (had newborn and ppd on top of it) I was such a mess. I would sit outside her door and cry while she cried. There was nothing I could do for her and I was such a mess I figured that by being in the room with her I was only making things worse as my tempur grew. Sometimes kids just have to cry. It feels cruel but sometimes it's the only way. Every child is different. We didn't have the same problem with #2, and the baby will go to bed awake with no feedings and fall right to sleep.
Also it needs to be consistant and it will take a couple weeks of misery, but well worth it in the end.. I know this will probably get flamed by some poeple on here, but my kids are well adjusted happy children. It worked for us.
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Old 06-17-2008, 01:26 PM   #6
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

Quote:
Originally Posted by nicleigh View Post
i personally think thats pretty late to put her to bed. My 3 1/2 yr old goes to sleep by 7 (8 if we have had company, etc) and he sleeps until at least 7. Thats the only thing i can think of, is put her to bed earlier
Eh. My 3 year old doesn't go to bed until after 10 most nights. It's just the way our schedule has developed, and she naps usually from 2-4 (sometimes a little later) and she sleeps great.

I'd say she is having nightmare/night terrors. If she waking up crying, saying no one loves her - I'd be pretty concerned. However, I have no idea how to deal with it. Maybe they could call their ped. and see what they have to say?!!?
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Old 06-17-2008, 01:28 PM   #7
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

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Originally Posted by nicleigh View Post
i personally think thats pretty late to put her to bed. My 3 1/2 yr old goes to sleep by 7 (8 if we have had company, etc) and he sleeps until at least 7. Thats the only thing i can think of, is put her to bed earlier
I doubt it's that since her entire life she's gone to bed that late, and she used to sleep till 9AM every morning (and still does if she ever gets back to sleep), so just like your kids, she got her full 12 hours of sleep. My kids are on a very late schedule as well since their dad gets home at 7-8PM they go to sleep between 10-11PM and I have NEVER had any problems with this schedule since I am a SAHM I don't have to get up and wake them in the morning they just sleep really late.
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Old 06-17-2008, 01:59 PM   #8
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

Mine used to go to bed late too, have been cutting it back since #1 will be going to school in the fall. I have been gradually cutting back over the past year from about 10 pm untill about 8-8:30 now. Though some nites it's after 9 still before they are in bed. to us it's important that they have a nap. Even though they sleep 12 hours at nite, the 1 hour my 3 yr old gets in the afternoon seems to be the key to he sleeping well at nite.
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Old 06-17-2008, 03:50 PM   #9
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

I agree Amanda, she may be overtired or something
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Old 06-18-2008, 09:14 AM   #10
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Re: Horrible sleeping issues 3 1/2 year old...

a nap never hurts anyone, shoot if I could I'd get a nap daily!

Every family has their own schedules, if she's used to going to bed late, then I doubt it's the actual time that's the problem... could always try a nap and keep in mind that any solution is going to take time to work, nothing is a one day miracle.
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