Hi everyone. We've recently had a new baby. She is now 8weeks old but after a week or so of her arriving, my 3 year old has started playing up at bedtime and it's getting worse. I really don't know what to do and would love some advice. I spoke to a sleep consultant but she costs £255 and I'm currently on maternity leave so I thought I'd ask here first.
Our bed time routine hasn't changed. Calm time, bath, bed with a book. But after being put to bed my 3 year old gets up again and again and again. Needing a wee, a drink, to tell me something.... Anything other than sleep basically. Iv tried being patient and that doesn't work. Iv tried taking away her books, that doesn't work. Quite frequently my newborn will need me whilst I'm putting my toddler to bed so il have to see to her and then come back which is imagine doesn't help but I can't do anything about it. I try to get my newborn in bed and settled but she suffers with colic and often cries. It's quite frequent that il put my 3 year old to bed, then the baby will cry and it's like a trigger for my 3 year old to get up. Has anyone got any advice? The bedtime routine has gone from a lovely calm happy time to a really stressful long one and I need to get it sorted because I'm tired myself and need the evenings to get other things done whilst the children sleep.
Thanks, any help appreciated!
Hi, I understand that this is a difficult and tiring situation. It could be a number of things, I don't doubt that the crying bothers your three year old or that the new arrival has upset the equilibrium. Have you patiently explained why they need to stay in bed after you've put them to bed? Consistency and repetition is what gets through to younger children, so sticking to your guns tends to work best, if one method doesn't work once maybe try it out for a week and see how it goes. You may find it helpful to read our articles on childhood behaviour and baby sleep. If you feel you need further support please e-mail us at or call our freephone helpline on 0808 800 2222.