Lilah used to be an amazing sleeper. She slept through the night from 5 weeks old. After that a series of events happened which we think could be the cause of her bad sleeping habits.
To start we were building a house which wasn’t finished so we had to move into a single room in my parents house until our house was completed. We then went overseas where she shared a bed with us in the hotel and really liked the idea of this. A month after the trip to Spain we moved into our house. Lilah was 18 months old at this point. She still slept through most nights. We then moved her into a big girl bed and into her own room before she was 2 years old, and she still slept through occasionally.
The big trouble started when she reached the age of two. All of a sudden she wouldn’t sleep through. She now very easily wakes up 3-5 times a night. Sometimes she falls asleep quickly and other times you can sit with her for 2 hours and she’ll still be wide awake.
I’m writing this post while sitting in her room waiting for her to fall asleep. I have been here for 1.5 hours already. I’m tired and I’m fed up.
So I decided to share 10 Things I have learned from trying to get a toddler to sleep.
A sleep routine can change in the blink of an eye.
Crying it out is not for everyone.
I don’t believe in crying it out. It’s traumatic for the kid and for the parent. My little girl takes after her daddy. She is extremely stubborn and if you leave her to cry it out she just doesn’t stop. She won’t even cry herself to sleep. She will just cry until her voice is hoarse and you’re also in tears.
Every night is different.
Don’t fool yourself by thinking “Wow, last night was great. She slept though. Tonight will be the same.” it probably won’t.
You may have no idea why your toddler doesn’t sleep well.
This is very true in my case. I have no clue. I have read articles and books and I still don’t know why. She also can’t tell me.
Try as many different things as you can to help the process.
Educate yourself and try find something that works for you. So far, i’m coming up empty on this one, but not for a lack of trying. And I will keep trying.
Just when you think things are going well a spanner will be thrown in the works.
We started a sticker system as a reward for sleeping on her own bed. It went great, for a while. All of a sudden if you try to bribe her with a sticker she doesn’t care. She simply says “I don’t want a sticker”.
What works for your kid won’t always work for mine.
I have received countless amounts of advice. So far, nothing has worked.
She will suddenly have a sore, want water, want daddy, want her baba.
Anything not to sleep.
A hard headed toddler has a stronger will than a hard headed grown up.
It’s true. Some nights I’ll think she’s asleep and as I try leave, all of a sudden she is awake. As if she can read minds. As if she knows you’re about to leave. And if she doesn’t want to fall asleep, She won’t. Simple.
Sometimes we need to hear this:
Don’t give in. Don’t give up. This too shall pass. Keep your head up. keep going. You’re doing a fantastic job.
If there is anyone out there with the secret to getting my toddler to sleep through the night. Please share your advice with me. Send me an email. I’d love to try it out. Seriously!