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Author Topic: Sleep training for a 16 month old?? I need help!  (Read 10256 times)
huskergirl
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« on: November 17, 2010, 12:49:31 PM »

I have put myself into a bad situation and I am not sure how to get out of it. My 16 month old will not go to sleep unless I am holding her or rocking her. We were to a point where we could lay her down at 8pm and she would fall asleep within 5-25 minutes. Now it takes me anywhere from 10-90 minutes to get her down. If I put her in her crib awake, she thinks it's time to play and would play for an hour if I let her. Any suggestions to getting her to go down on her own? I wouldn't mind if she cried a bit, but she doesn't even do that, just wants to play. I know she's tired, but she won't go to sleep. I have to get her sleep trained before this next baby comes!
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BrycesMomma
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« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2010, 01:11:06 PM »

Do you have a bedtime routine with a bath and a book?  I notice sometimes if I do not have my son rest on the couch before I put him to bed it takes him a bit longer to get to sleep.
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SophiaMom1978
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« Reply #2 on: November 17, 2010, 01:12:37 PM »

Oh man, what a predicament for sure!

I would put her in her crib and tell her it's bedtime - ignore her playing, it doesn't harm anything.  If she can climb out of her crib I would invest in one of those crib tents.  We had to put a baby gate in the doorway of my son's room so when he got out of his toddler bed that was as far as he got.

At this age - I would let her cry it out, play it out, all of it.  It won't take but a few days I bet to turn her habits into good ones.  And you'll have time to YOURSELF when normally you'd be laying down with her!  I don't know about you but I would be falling asleep too if I laid next to my child.

If you stick with the routine and don't deviate at all - she will learn quickly that bedtime is bedtime and she needs to go to sleep on her own.

I'm sure this wouldn't work for everyone, but it sure worked for us!

Good luck and maybe others will chime in.
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Jen, loving wife to Jon, busy mother of a 7, 3, and 1 year old, and in-home daycare provider.
mom2lulu
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« Reply #3 on: November 17, 2010, 01:18:04 PM »

Totally agree with SophiaMom. Nip this in the bud by letting her cry it out or play it out until she falls asleep. Put her down in the crib and don't look back!

I sleep trained my kids pretty well, but my older daughter went through all sorts of phases when she was this age...play in the crib for a while, get up really early, etc.

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huskergirl
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« Reply #4 on: November 17, 2010, 02:12:03 PM »

Thanks everyone, I am glad no one is making me feel like a bad mom here! Smiley Do I put her in her crib earlier than I want her to go to sleep? I would like her to be asleep by 8:15 or 8:30, just so I can have some time before me and the hubby go to bed. Do I put her down then or at 7:45 or 8?  She can't crawl out of her crib yet so that's not a problem. I have typically just snuggled up with her on the couch or rocked her in the chair in her room. It's just getting more and more difficult to get her to sleep.
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mom2lulu
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« Reply #5 on: November 17, 2010, 03:14:07 PM »

8 seems too late to be putting her down.
I'd start your bedtime routine by 7:15, with the goal of putting her in the crib 7:30-7:40. Then shut the door and leave!
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nlivingston
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« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2010, 03:38:36 PM »

Do you let her play in the crib at other times during the day? Maybe cut out any other play times in the crib so that she realizes that the crib is for bedtime only. I'm sure she will catch on, and you aren't a bad mommy because your little one likes to play and giggle instead of going to sleep. That seems much better than her screaming and crying. Smiley
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ReillysMom
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« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2010, 06:38:40 PM »

I agree with mom2lulu.  Since Reilly was an infant we started shower time at 7 pm with a goal to have her bathed, hair dried, pjs on, and teeth brushed by 7:30 pm for 15 minutes of reading stories with Mom and Dad.  Sleep begets sleep so although it's counterintuitive, try pushing her bedtime earlier.  And, if she plays quietly in her bed, I wouldn't worry too much about it.

The suggestion from the lady at Behaven (author of the Sleep Fairy) at a brown bag luncheon I went to is to limit items in bed to 1 item, period--or your child will play instead of sleep.  And if you play music, no words--otherwise your child will start to learn the words and sing instead of sleep.
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huskergirl
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« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2010, 07:22:40 PM »

The typical routine is dinner at 5:45 and then bath, pj's. We hang out, play until about 7:30 when I read a few books, drink some milk and snuggle before going into her room about 8 to rock and go to sleep.

I don't let her play in her crib at all during the day. Usually when she wakes up she will begin to play and talk, but I go get her right away. She also does not take anything to bed with her except a blanket.

I plan to put her down here shortly so we will see how it goes!
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huskergirl
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« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2010, 08:05:57 PM »

Cross your fingers. At 7:30 we went into her room, read 3 books, had some milk and said prayers. I laid her down and closed the door. She cried for about 12 minutes and has been quiet for about 10. Could it really of been this easy on the first night?  Shocked 
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ReillysMom
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« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2010, 08:34:08 PM »

Good Luck!!

You might try reversing your routine: dinner, play, hang out, bath, pjs, read, bed.  That way she's winding down and pjs help signal sleep instead of play?
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Julie -- wife to Matthew (16 years), mom to Reilly (5) and Ryan (2).
SophiaMom1978
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« Reply #11 on: November 18, 2010, 07:14:01 AM »

I know a little off the main topic - but the first night my 2 year old went without a pacifier, she screamed for an HOUR!  It was heartbreaking to me but I stuck with it and restrained myself from going in there.  The next night - NO fussing about it!  Crying for 12 minutes - you made it through!  It'll only get easier from here.

Jen
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Veronica
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« Reply #12 on: November 18, 2010, 07:24:01 AM »

So was 12 minutes it?Huh Update us please!

No, of course you're not a bad mom because of this! Sleep can be hard - until you get it figured it out. But there have been several threads on here about sleep. You're not alone.

I put my kids to bed at 8:30, including my 18-month-old; that might seem late to some, but it works fine for us.

Let us know how the night went!
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kittymama
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« Reply #13 on: November 18, 2010, 07:52:58 AM »

That is great! It is so difficult for us to hear our babies crying! It goes against every instinct god gave us. Every instinct, until the I-Must-Sleep-or-I'll-Kill-Someone instict kicks in. Yep, that one is stronger.

I remember my husband took me outside to sit on the porch while Donovan cried it out. We sat there for about 20 minutes. I was wringing my hands with a sad puppy dog look, but I knew I had to be strong. My husband reminded me that it would be like giving birth: you have to go through a little pain to gett o the good stuff!

Hang in there!  Smiley
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bananamama
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« Reply #14 on: November 18, 2010, 08:50:25 AM »

Oh, someone is this discussion strand mentioned breaking their kid of the binky.  Any good advice on that?  But don't tell me to take it away and let her cry.  I don't have the ability to do that.  I have had many a rough night getting her to sleep because I don't do the cry-it-out thing.  I am looking for creative suggestions without it being traumatic (for me).  Thanks for any ideas!
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