Bedtime Battles

July 29, 2014

Lately, someone has been putting up a fight when it's time for bedtime. And that someone isn't me. 

On a normal night, we give Hudson a bath around 6:30, then give him his milk while we read books or watch Winnie the Pooh, and then pop him in his bed and say goodnight. He usually reads a book or plays in his crib for 20 minutes or so and then is out. On a bad night, he plays/reads in his crib for an hour before falling asleep.

**Edited to add: The reason for the early bedtime (usually 7:30pm) is because he needs to be up by 6:30am the next day for my husband to take him to daycare.

But something changed two weeks ago and all of a sudden Hudson is anti-bedtime. He doesn't want to take a bath. Doesn't want to sit still to read books or watch a movie. He gets crazy hyper and just wants to jump on our bed or play with all his toys. And then when we put him to bed he screams and cries. 

I've tried moving bedtime up. I've tried moving bedtime. I've tried rocking him. I've tried singing songs. Nightlights. Laying down with him. Nothing works. I can tell Hudson is super tired and needs to sleep...he's just refusing it. And it has made our bedtime routine pretty miserable. Thankfully, he isn't fighting his nap and usually sleeps 2-2.5 hours. 

Has anyone else gone through this? I'm hoping it's just a stage that will quickly pass....any tips would be appreciated!

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20 Comments »

20 Responses to “Bedtime Battles”

  1. Kids go through so many phases! We have a 2.5 yr old son and a new baby expected in about 5 weeks. When our son fights bedtime - I lose patience fast these days-- I'm not proud of it - but it is what it is! My advice - and this is just something that has worked for our family… We do bath and then come back downstairs to play for a few and/or say goodnight to daddy/or mommy. Next we go upstairs, brush our teeth, and pick 3 books to read in bed. Once books are done - even if he fusses or cries, I explain that it's "night night time" and that I'll come to check on him in a while. Usually he settles down and goes to sleep within 10 minutes or so. Saying I'll come to check on him really seems to help us. (between you and me-- I don't actually check on him till he's fast asleep a few hrs later!) Typically it takes about a week to get back on track after changing his routine due to a trip or something… Good luck!!

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  2. It's definitely a stage (well. Everything with toddlers is). I don't have any awesome advice- but I will tell you we had to limit lex's naps to 2 hours otherwise Homegirl won't go down until 9:30! And letsbehonest 9:30 these days is past MY bedtime. And while I hate not having the glorious 3 hours I'm used to-- the evenings are easier. Hang in there! It'll pass-- promise!

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  3. How many naps a day does he take, at at what times? Maybe a nap needs to be omitted (if he takes more than one) or moved up.

    My son goes through times like this too if he's teething. Teething disrupts his sleep schedule so much - drives me nuts!

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  4. My little girl went through this a couple months ago. She went from being a perfect sleeper to screaming and crying when it was time for nap or bed. She was so upset that she even started climbing out of the crib! She was obviously exhausted, so to get her to sleep we resorted to driving her around in the car. Luckily, she went back to her normal, happy, sleeping self after about two weeks. We wondered if she was teething but when we looked in her mouth, we saw nothing. About a month later I noticed that her two year molars were fully in! I never saw them popping through the gum at all... So I almost wonder if that's what caused the sleep conundrum.

    I hope the craziness passes quickly for you!

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  5. I think the earlier commenters may be on the right track - maybe it's the nap? How long does he sleep at night? With a long nap, that sounds like a fairly early bedtime unless he's getting up at the crack of dawn. Maybe a shorter nap or later bedtime (or combo of both?) would help make bedtime less of a struggle? Wishing you luck! I know it's no fun to put a sad baby to bed.

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  6. My son, who will 2 next month, went through the exact same thing for about 3 weeks. We are now (finally!) back to his normal routine. It was horrible but just like everything else, it passed (thank goodness!). Good luck mama!!

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  7. Us too - exact same thing! I'm thinking it's just a phase, especially reading through the comments here. Abbie used to ask for bedtime...and now she just screams and cries until she collapses. Here's hoping they both get over it soon!

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  8. Yes! All of last week we were going through this. Anabelle was crazy hyper until we started to wind down to read books before bedtime. She would be super tired all the way through the end of the last book. Once I'd put her down in her crib, she would scream bloody murder. I'd pick her up, and she would respond with, "hi," give me and kiss and then ask to get down. Multiply this times 100 each night! I eventually stood my ground and told her it's bedtime and let her cry for a few minutes when I left the room. After that she would fall asleep and wake up her usual normal self. If she doesn't get proper sleep, she's a grump and total zombie the next day!

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  9. We went through bedtime hell back at 22 months. Like she would scream and hyperventilate, we tried letting her cry it out because it was ridic and she literally screamed for an hour before I was like, this is insane. It went on for a week before we got the new clock and lady bug stars thing, but she still wanted to fall asleep with me in the room, so I started keeping her door open and letting her see me in my room finally we got back to normal (a little over 2 wks all said and done). We know have normal little kid procrastination ever since we potty trained. One more trip to potty, one more sip of water, get tucked back in, mommy my nail polish is chipped (that was two nights ago, no joke)..... Maybe try something new to the routine... music that turns off, lights incase he's scared of the dark, open door, etc... good luck!

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  10. Oh my goodness. My son who is the same age goes bonkers at night, but luckily doesn't fight going to bed. He tries to put off going potty before bed so he goes maybe 10min later than normal but man does he have some energy at night now. He used to calm down with a book or show but now he'd rather run around or play ring around the rosie 50 times. If he's anything like mine, he's learning 100 new things/words a day so it's probably just a developmental thing. It will pass.

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  11. Same thing going on over here and Jett turns 2 on Sunday so they're roughly the same age! Must be a developmental/independence thing!!! He used to go down easily at 7pm just plop him in the crib he'd read and play for 10 minutes and then out before 7:30pm, now I'm lucky if I'm out of the room before 8pm and it usually takes him until 8:30pm to fall asleep and that requires lots of talking and compromising!!! Our babies aren't babies anymore!!!

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  12. I have no good advice except that we're having serious battles with the transition to a big girl bed. She just won't stay in bed so she's not falling asleep until 9/930 which like Erin said is past my bedtime! We have a clock and she fully understands the colors but still does what she wants. We're thinking of changing up the routine some to help with the transition. Oh and keep naps to 2 hours too. It could be a phase or a change in that he needs less sleep overall. I wouldn't have believed that but lately Callie is sleeping about 12-13 hours total and 6mo ago it was still a solid 14. I hope you figure something out from all the comments you're getting!

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  13. Ugh that is so hard. Poor Hudson and Mama! I know you said he's still taking a nap. Is he taking a nap late in the day? Maybe he's not tired at bedtime or his nap is too long. I wish I had more advice, I hope this passes soon!

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  14. We just went through this ourselves. Reed was so easy to put to bed and then one day he screamed bloody murder. We thought he was sick or something and rocked him to sleep that night. The the next night the screams came back and the next until we ended up being a little hard core about letting him cry it out. After a really rough two weeks he's back on track. I think he was just testing limits. I did find that if I stay in his room and sing some extra songs and talk to him about how, "mama's not far away, mama is just downstairs. I can hear you if you call me. I'll be downstairs. Mama is just going downstairs - repeat, repeat" that helped a ton. Good luck to you!

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  15. We are going through that too, and have no solution thus far. Caleb has been fighting falling asleep in the evenings, and screaming if we put him in his crib awake. Then at some point during the night he wakes up, starts crying and won't go back to sleep. At that point, he usually ends up snuggled in bed with us - which I know is a BAD idea. Ugh. If you figure it out, let me know!

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  16. It is a stage... and unfortunately it will happen periodically if your Hudson is like our oldest. I will pray for you, it's rough when they go through this!

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  17. Just a stage! It feels heartless but do everything you've been doing, bath/books/snuggles then plop him in that crib and let him work it out to sleep. He needs his rest!! He's big enough now to be able to deal with that I think :)

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  18. My daughter went through this just a few weeks ago. It was very out of character for her. It only lasted a few weeks thankfully and then she was right back into her regular routine. Hopefully it passes quickly for you all too!

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  19. It sounds like it could be a combination of things. Are his two year molars coming in? M's came in waaaay before she turned two and it was hell on wheels to deal with and really affected her sleep the most. He may be tired of the crib if you haven't made the transition yet. Limit his nap time and move it up in the afternoon. M goes down for a nap at 1 {Sometimes 12:30} and only sleeps for two hours - never longer. One other thing we've also found that helps is turning off the TV and all gadgets an hour before bedtime. This gives M's brain time to decompress and settle for the day. Hang in there momma. Hope it gets better soon.

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  20. Ahhhhh! Cam went through this like a month ago, and I had no idea what to do! I was ready to put him in a regular bed because I thought he was just over the crib. BUT, it went away, and he's fine now.

    PS We have an early bed time, too, because we have to be out the door by 7! I wish we could push it back a little since he still wakes up on weekends by 6:30!!

    Good luck!!

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