Some of you may remember I recently wrote a post about the Sleep Nightmare with trying to wean H off her dummy so I thought I would update you all and also see if there are any other opinions on what I am doing.
In a nut shell, the attempt has been made for H to no longer have a dummy at all. Since then she has done really well in that during the day she doesn’t ask for it at all, it means the tantrums have hightened but even for her day time nap she no longer has dummy. Admittedly her daytime nap is now rarely in her bed, simply because we have been out and about during the holidays and she has napped in the car or pushchair.
Night time is a different story though. Since my last post she hasn’t improved and I have resigned to letting her have dummy at bedtime because I couldn’t deal with the tantrums in the day coupled with the crying to sleep at night and the waking 3 to 4 times a night. We stayed with family over the weekend, and the strange environment added to the whole issue. One night in particular she took 3 hours to settle even with her dummy. We got home on Tuesday and for 2 nights now she has slept with dummy, without waking and I have caught up on my sleep.
So now we are in the situation where the dummy is back and H is apprehensive every night as to whether she will have dummy or not and that’s putting us all on edge at bedtime. Part of me wants to forget the whole thing and leave it to settle down again for a while. She isn’t the sort of child who will have her dummy till she is 5 or 6 and I’m really not worried about her teeth, because once asleep she spits it out and she now only has it for bed. Thing is though she is back to her dad’s next week and I know he really wants her to be without her dummy. Plus he did put in alot of effort the 1st week to get her off it and a part of me thinks he will really hold all this against me. I just know he won’t see my point of view and that bugs me.
So am I doing the right thing in sticking with dummy so as to relieve us all of the bedtime anxiety and then give it another go in a few weeks? I know some of you will say I’ve done the wrong thing but I can’t help think now is just the wrong time, what with her being off nursery and visiting her dad’s and other family more often. I’m just hoping I’m not putting off the inevitable by waiting until she is back to the normal routine!!!
I have been lucky with my girls. B slept through from 8 weeks and H from 4 weeks and I was always thankful for this. Especially as a single mum, the evenings are my time and it has made things so much easier knowing that by 8pm they are both in bed and in general both asleep by 8:30pm.
A week ago the dummy fairy came and took H’s dummy. She had given up having her dummy during the day when she was 1 and now she had turned 2 the time was right. She was at her dad’s when the fairy came and I was getting nightly text updates on how she was doing. It involved tears and tantrums but she was doing well. Also, for the last 3 weeks she has slept in a room with someone else – we had a week’s holiday where she shared a room with B, then at her dad’s she shares with B and their half sister L.
Saturday they came home, they had been with dad for 2 weeks and I had missed them like hell but was looking forward to how the no dummy thing was going to work. Saturday night she went straight off no fuss and slept through. I was amazed but thought maybe it was just that the time was right. Sunday night she didn’t settle quite so easy but once she went off she was asleep for the night.
Monday H went back to nursery and managed a nap there without dummy, I was really beginning to believe we had cracked in but Monday night things changed. She went off ok but woke at around 3am. Now she is a very intelligent 2 year old and when I asked her if she was going back to sleep she said… “No I don’t want to”, when I asked her why I got various excuses – “I got tummy ache”, “My feet hurt”, “There’s a hair on my finger”, “My feet hurt” the list goes on. After an hour of attempting controlled crying, which made her worse, and sitting with her, which made her wake up more, I decided enough was enough and out came the dummy. Now maybe this was my turning point and I should have stayed strong. Thing is though, as a single mum it’s all me. I can’t share nightmare nights with someone else. I have to deal with it alone, feeling tired, frustrated and guilty for my actions. She went straight back off to sleep.
Tuesday night she played up as soon as she went to bed. She wanted me to stay with her so I did rather than her get upset because controlled crying has never worked with her even as a baby and sitting by her bed for 10 minutes generally relaxes her enough for me to say I need to go and do something and will be back in a minute. She then settles off herself before I come back!! She again woke around 3am and again I tried for an hour and ended up giving her her dummy.
Tonight the tantrum started as soon as I said the word bed. I struggled to get her PJ’s on, she was taking her top off as fast as I was managing to get it on her. Enough was enough, I am worn out this week and so I told her if she calms down she can have her dummy for bed. She did calm down so off we went to bed. I gave her dummy, said goodnight and left. Then the screaming started again. Now she wanted me to stay with her, because the last few nights that’s what I have done, and, like I say she has shared a bedroom for the last 3 weeks. I told her she had to chose between dummy or me sitting with her. She gave me dummy back and after half an hour she was in dreamland.
She woke up about 20 minutes ago. Same excuses for not wanting to go back to sleep. I gave in straight away. I am racked with guilt and I know her dad will thing I’ve undone all the work her did. I just can’t work out what’s best. Do I persevere, and hope that these sleepless nights are only short term. Or do I give up on trying for a while and just accept that as she only has it to fall asleep (she spits it out once asleep), and doesn’t have it for her day time nap or during the day, then actually it’s no bad thing for a little while longer.
Help, all advice gratefully received, what would you do? Persevere or give up on this attempt????
- Current Affairs
- Family Life
- Guest Blog Post
- Me, myself and I
- Mummy Tummy Begone
- My 101 Things
- Product Reviews
- Race for Life
- School and Childcare
- Secret Post Club
- Song Saturday
- The Gallery
- Working Mum