Sunday, January 3, 2010

Bedtime


I've decided to start off 2010 with a confession. Here it goes...deep breath. My confession is that my 4 year old son doesn't sleep in his bed. And that's not the worst part. The real confession is that he often doesn't fall asleep until 10 or 11 PM. We've been super horrible parents and have slacked off in the bedtime department. He's the 3rd child and the "baby" so you know how that goes.


Most nights he just falls asleep on the couch. Other nights he's wide awake and coming to bed with us wayyyyyy later than he should. On those days I drop him off at preschool the next day and get in my car just hoping and praying that he doesn't act up out of sheer exhaustion. I know he should be in bed at a reasonable hour, I really do, but we've been lazy.







That's all about to change. We've decided it's time to Supernanny him. This week we're going to attempt to undo the bad bedtime habits we've allowed him to get away with and enforce a bedtime routine. And enforce him sleeping in his own room, in his own bed. For his sake and for ours because that boy does not stay still all.night.long. He moves and kicks and takes all the blankets. Yup, it's definitely time for him to sleep on his own.


Wish us luck! If you have any advice, I'm all ears!! I have a feeling this week the entire house will be lacking in sleep. We're all going to look like this....







Project Supernanny Day 1, here we go....







35 comments:

jennie w. said...

You can do it! It's so hard to do what's right in the middle of the night, but be strong!!!

Anna said...

good luck to you! At least my 6 year old is out of the habit of getting in my bed at some point in the night (but this only happened a few months ago). He does fall asleep many times on the couch and my husband carries him up to bed. We need to get back in a better routine too, we have been too relaxed over our Christmas break!

beth said...

Good luck, Michelle. I'm not really sure what advice to give except whatever you do, don't give in. It's going to be really hard, and you're right, everyone in the house may be extra tired for a while, but I'll bet he'll be sleeping in his own bed in no time!

Kimberly said...

Be strong. Be consistent. Be calm, yet firm. Be boring. Do you drink? Just kidding. It will only take a few days at most and you will be so happy when it's over! And so will your son.

Kimberly
http://yeptheyareallmine.blogspot.com/

Nancy said...

Good luck! It has been awhile since my kids were that age, so I can't remember any good advice to share! ;-) Hang in there, you'll get thru it.

Nancy

Its So Very Cheri said...

Good Luck girl--you can do it

Cheri

Melissa Miller said...

Oh my goodness Michelle! I'm sure you are right it will be tough to do this but well worth it.

Good Luck! :)

Anonymous said...

Michelle,

I think it is a common thing for kids to want to go to bed when the adults do.
What worked for me was that I let my son pick a special thing he wanted to do and if he would go to sleep in his own room at the bed time I selected for 1 week he would get to do the special thing he wanted at the end of the week.
I also let my son re-decorate his room so he would want to sleep in his room because it was "his style"
and so we created a room he was proud of-no more yellow walls!
I guess some Moms would cringe at my ideas but they really worked for us. And yes,I was talking about my youngest son-he was the hardest! He is 14 now and it is time to redo his room again so from blue walls we are looking at a NEW color. Goodbye blue!
Thanks, JolieAnne

Adrienne said...

we broke the habit with our oldest child by putting her younger brother in bed with her as soon as he was old enough. they were great buddies and the best part, no more knees in my back.

Dawn said...

You can do it! Just stick to your guns! If he sees you mean business, he's more likely to do what you ask. If you start weakening, he will see that in a split second and take advantage of it!

Good luck!

Sweet Bee Cottage said...

Be strong! You can do it! It will be worth it! Stay united! We're all here backing you up!

The Whispering Creek House said...

I turn all the lights down after dinner and set the tone for the house..it quiets everyone and lets them know its getting time for bed they get ready half an hour be fore bed and laying down before the actual bed time that way they are in bed and all is in place and you can be relaxed and ready to enjoy the evening..i start talking about bed too..so they are preparing themselves for it..this has worked for us for everyone of my kids but one..the second kid he cannot fall asleep..but he still has to be quiet and not bother the others if he is still awake..good luck to you! you can do It!

Amy said...

My youngest is 11. He finally slept in his own bed at 9....and still goes to sleep when I go to sleep. Of course, I have the luxury of home schooling him, but still....
Either way, you're not a super horrible parent. ;-) (well....I don't think I am, so you're not by default.)

rachel @ perfectly imperfect said...

i know you can do it!! the first few days will be the hardest, but you're making a commitment because you LOVE him & you want to do the healthiest thing for him. remember that when it's hard... kids don't like wearing seatbelts or bike helmets, either, but we use them because it's the best & safest thing for them.
be strong!!
happy sunday,
rachel

Theresa said...

Just hang in there... you probably need the rest and we'll pray for quick adjustment:) for all of you! Like one of the other comments said, don't give in... you'll feel much better for it! Hugs and prayers!

Sunshine said...

Bedtime is always a hard thing, but if you stick to your guns they will learn. This works for our four year old that I only had to do once. When they come out you immediatley put them back in bed and simply say "You must stay in bed". Nothing less, nothing more. I would just hang right out their door and do it because they would come out so quick. And I definetley recommend tag teaming with your partner so you remain calm and don't get frustrated at your child. Sometimes it takes up to an hour, but they will get tired of getting out of bed and will eventually stay! Good Luck!

thedeinesfamily said...

We coslept with my son from 6 months until he was a little over a year old. The transition into his own bed took some time and a few tears. (On his part and mine!) I used some ideas from the book The No Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers: Gentle Ways to Stop Bedtime Battles and Improve Your Child's Sleep by Elizabeth Pantley. You should check it out. Hope the transition goes well!

Kasey

ROSE VINE COTTAGE said...

Wish I could help you but my oldest would not sleep in his crib at all I tried I really did but he would make himself throw up and I just gave up,(did I mention my kids are very,very stubborn) and he slept with us when I had my second I decided I had to make him sleep in his crib, he was an angel about it but as he got older he ended up in my bed anyways, then # 3 I thought I can do this it worked with my second but nope he would not sleep in his crib!! Yeah it was a really crowded bed and my husband was ready for a divorce, LOL, but eventually they grow out of it and now I miss cuddling with them, my youngest is going to be 14 this mo, they grow up so fast, at the time it was tough and someone was always waking us up. They would even sneak across the floor and crawl into my side of the bed cause they were afraid daddy was going to make them go back to their bed LOL! Good luck and I wish I knew the answers for ya!!
Hugs~Kelly

Tammy at Tattered and Timeless said...

Good luck - you can do it. My youngest - the princess still comes to our bed around midnight. Not so bad now that hubby is in Afghanistan but it does get old..
She did manage to stay in her bed Christmas eve as I said Santa wouldn't come if he didn't see her there..but she just won't do it now.
Maybe when your done you can pack up your nanny bag and come fix her.:)
tammy

Katrina Chambers said...

Good luck! I have 3 boys and am as tough as can be when it comes to bedtime. I know it's hard work, but it will be worth it in the end. Yep, follow the suppernanny rules and even put her phone number on the fridge and tell your little man you know how to ring her! Let us know how it goes :)

Cathy said...

I have to confess too - my 4 year old (and yes he is the youngest of 3)is exactly the same. The only way that we can get him to bed is by sleeping with him to get him off to sleep. After quietly sneeking away he is often in our bed 30 minutes later. My excuse has always been that in a few years he won't want us around and this time at night is so precious. The downside is that I haven't had a decent sleep since my eldest was born.

Good luck - I will be eagerly awaiting any tips that you may have.

Jamie said...

Good luck! We have a 3 year old with major sleeping issues too. I wish I had some great advice, but I don't. I'll be eager to hear how the week goes for you!

janet said...

Hi Michelle, I wouldn't say you were lazy in your parental skills. Sometimes us parents are just too tired to fight a battle. Consistancy is the key, but isn't it always with children. Have you tried a reward system? You could do a chart and for each night he goes to his bed and sleeps there, then reward him. For example, some cool stickers that he gets to put on his own chart (pick something he loves as an award) He will surprise you, and likely adjust quicker than you think. Hang in there, you are a fantastic mom.
hugs
janet

Wendy said...

Good luck! My now 8 year old slept in bed with me until he was over 2. There were many nights he crawled back in bed in the middle of the night! We were really lax on bedtime, too. ANd while they are in bed now at 8, they are rarely asleep before 9 or 9:30.

Darlene said...

We are still having a problem getting Lexi to consistently sleep in her OWN bed and she is 10!!!! I want to hear what works for you.♥

Cindy said...

The only thing that worked with my kids was waking them 15 minutes earlier each morning...first week get them up at 7. AFter a few days wake them up at 6:45...few more days 6:30 and so on.

Also, having a set bedtime routine done at a set time...letting them take responsibility for stuff. Like hubby would say "jammies on, teeth brushed....then I'll read".

Routine, routine, routine. :) It only took me 6 kids to learn that. *wink*

The Whispering Creek House said...

Thank you for your help with my stove issue! I have had a good time reading eveyones suggetions..I know I will find something! Thanks again!

Susie from Bienvenue said...

I have to share my secret...our 9yr old sleeps on our floor most nights. I have tried everything under the sun...she's our 3rd baby as well...Hmmmm..smiles~

Rhonda said...

Oh how I remember those days! Hmmm, my son is now 11; but back when he wouldn't sleep in his own bed, I had to give him an incentive. Start a new routine at bedtime - maybe a story, or something special you do with him only at bedtime. Be prepared to take him back to his bed a few times at first, no talking, just gently taking him back to bed. It works, but takes patience.

Good luck to you - soon you will ALL get a better nights sleep!

A Bite of Country Cupcakes said...

Oh My gosh,Because I have three I make them all go to bed at the one time1
I can't cope without my time without kiddos around.
So It'll be a good thing for sure for you all.
It May be easier than you think,Like when we decided no Pacifier for our Son,Braced ourselves and itwas all ok!
Good Luck,Be strong:)

Jen Kershner said...

Well, I have no advice but I wish you luck. I bet you have your work cut out for you. Be strong!

Carla said...

Good luck with that. My kids have all been kicked out of my bed at varying ages so I feel where you are coming from.

Melissa said...

Thank goodness!!! I thought I was the only lazy parent out there!!! I give no advice because you don't need any. You know what is best for your child and if it makes you happy to cuddle then just do it. Our 4-year-old usually goes to bed sometime between 9:30 and 10:30 and
sleeps in his own bed as long as I lay down with him for about 20 min. He's usually back in our bed by 7:30 a.m. and can stay there as long as he wants. I'd rather he be in there than in the living room by himself watching cartoons while my husband and I sleep in - because we're lazy like that. LOL! I love your blog and thanks for standing up for lazy parents everywhere!

tara said...

Hang in there, you can do it! my son slept in his own bed since he was 6 weeks old, but that is the kind of kid he is...I think routine is what works, find a good routine (bath, brush teeth, read a book...)and maybe that will help, oh and don't give in...ever! Ha!! I know easier said then done! Good luck!!

jet said...

I could have written your post! I certainly don't have any suggestions, but I'm all ears to hear how it goes for you!