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Getting baby to nap with busy toddler around and other sleep issues.

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  • Getting baby to nap with busy toddler around and other sleep issues.

    Hi all.

    I have a 4 month-old and a 29 month-old. For the past few weeks, it's been really really hard to get my baby girl to nap with her active brother around. The sound of his voice wakes her up. We live in a very small apartment so I don't have the luxury of putting her to sleep in a separate room and giving her total and absolute quiet. Plus, she wakes up the minute I put her down in her bassinet, after nursing her.

    Also, my son no longer takes regular naps. Not surprising, since he has NEVER been a good sleeper. So I am not able to sleep when they both sleep. I used to be able to nurse my son to take naps, but that was a long time ago. He also has a very hard time falling asleep on his own at night. I was so desperate that the pediatrician recommended I give him melatonin drops at bedtime, which has helped make him fall asleep, but I would rather not give this to him every night.

    The other thing is that I sleep in the family bed between my son and my baby girl. My husband sleeps in a separate room. This routine is ok for now, but I would really like my husband and I to eventually be in the same bed again.

    Any ideas on how I can improve my situation? I don't feel I should have to go to bed with my kids at night in order for them to stay asleep.

    I am very very tired and frustrated. Someone please help!

  • #2
    Poor you! Sleep deprivation can feel horrible. I have two girls, with a similar age gap. Our toddler stopped daytime naps well before our baby was born so I have a sense of how you might feel.

    I used a Naturesway baby hammock until our baby was about 5 months old which meant that I could rock the baby to sleep whilst playing with the toddler on the floor beside the hammock. At around 5 months our baby made it clear she wasn't so keen on the hammock any more, so we moved to the bedroom.

    We have a standard sized cot that we have removed the drop side from and my husband made a new, wider base for which sticks out a little though the open side. We have this pushed hard up against our big bed with an extra piece of sponge pushing the cot mattress hard up against the bed. This is our ********* and where our baby now sleeps day and night.

    Putting baby to sleep I give our big girl the option of coming with me or playing in the lounge. She invariably comes to bed. I took her to buy a "Super Quiet Snuggle Rug" which she snuggles under next to me, she's only allowed to whisper, otherwise she goes to play in the lounge. For the most part it works well. I often stroke my toddler's back or legs while I'm nursing the baby down, or whisper a story to our big girl.

    Other things that work for us are piling everybody into the stroller and going for a walk or sometimes letting the toddler get absorbed in colouring in.

    At nights, my husband and I sleep on the "big bed", the baby in the ********* on my side and the toddler in a home-made cot-sized bed on daddy's side. My husband began nighttime parenting our big girl at 18 months when I needed to night wean and they are inseparable at night now! Our bedroom is wall-to-wall bed in a T shape. When my husband and I want to cuddle in private we just go to another room.

    We put the girls to bed at the same time and all four of us lie down until they are both asleep. The big people then get up for a bit for grown up time, but we do go to bed before 10pm pretty much every night.

    I hope some of that helps! Keep following your heart but know that it's ok to meet your own needs as well as everybody elses!