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Old 09-24-2014, 08:57 AM
 
2,618 posts, read 4,106,655 times
Reputation: 1870

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Hi,

My wife and I have a 3.5 year old son (only child).

We sleep trained him twice. The first time was when he was about 10 months old. We used the Ferber Method, but incorrectly. By that, I mean we used it to keep him asleep, but rocked him in our arms to actually fall asleep. This lasted a few months and then we regressed. The second time was about a year ago. We stuck to 30 days of Ferber (with the help of a sleep consultant) and it took about 3 weeks, but worked amazingly. However, my wife went on a 10 day trip, felt guilty and then started sleeping with our son again (he has a full sized bed).

Currently, he falls asleep in his bed by himself, but my wife or I sit in a chair next to his bed while he falls asleep. This takes about an hour (to be fair it was at least 30 minutes when he was sleep trained) and it's taking its toll on our marriage, so we would like him to be sleep trained again.

Any advice? We installed a gate on his door, so it can remain open, but he can't get out. We'll explain to him that if he stays in his room, we'll leave the gate open. We'll also use a reward chart with stickers and prizes, but anything else? It's been rough. Thanks.
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Old 09-24-2014, 09:06 AM
 
6,461 posts, read 6,101,517 times
Reputation: 9778
It's rough because he knows if he makes enough of a fuss you will cave.

As parents you need to decide how much you want this, otherwise you are all being tortured for nothing.

I would not sit in his room past 15 minutes. Tell him that he needs to learn to sleep by himself and that you know he can do it. Have a ritual that you follow every night and he knows what will happen. Leave the gate off.

1. Take a bath
2. Put on Jammies
3. Read a book
4.kiss and hug good night. Turn down lights while mom or dad sits in room for 15 minutes.
5. Mom or dad leaves
6. Every time he gets up, you place him gently back to bed and say...I know you can go to sleep on your own. Even if it takes twenty times he will go to sleep. Then it keeps getting easier over successive nights. After a week or two he will not be resistant. Also shorten the time you sit in his room until it's only a minute or two.
7. Wake him up at the same time every morning. Don't let him sleep in.

I'm not going to lie...it will be he11. Once you have done it though, bedtime will be a breeze.
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Old 09-24-2014, 09:23 AM
 
2,618 posts, read 4,106,655 times
Reputation: 1870
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meyerland View Post
It's rough because he knows if he makes enough of a fuss you will cave.

As parents you need to decide how much you want this, otherwise you are all being tortured for nothing.

I would not sit in his room past 15 minutes. Tell him that he needs to learn to sleep by himself and that you know he can do it. Have a ritual that you follow every night and he knows what will happen. Leave the gate off.

1. Take a bath
2. Put on Jammies
3. Read a book
4.kiss and hug good night. Turn down lights while mom or dad sits in room for 15 minutes.
5. Mom or dad leaves
6. Every time he gets up, you place him gently back to bed and say...I know you can go to sleep on your own. Even if it takes twenty times he will go to sleep. Then it keeps getting easier over successive nights. After a week or two he will not be resistant. Also shorten the time you sit in his room until it's only a minute or two.
7. Wake him up at the same time every morning. Don't let him sleep in.

I'm not going to lie...it will be he11. Once you have done it though, bedtime will be a breeze.
Thanks. Maybe we can get an egg timer or something to indicate that 15 minutes has passed. My wife will like this approach better, but the sleep consultant that we used last year was completely against this method, but maybe we should try.
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Old 09-24-2014, 09:49 AM
 
1,176 posts, read 1,898,719 times
Reputation: 1397
It sounds like the problem is that the little boy is more determined to sleep with his parents than his parents are to resume their sex life.

You should wait for the weekend when (I assume) you both can afford to have a late night or two or three and be ready to listen to a determined little boy who knows your limits but not his own enthusiastically mourning the death of his routine of sleeping in mommy and daddy's bed.

NOTE: I experienced an abject failure with installing a gate in my daughter's room in the past. If you put a gate in, you have to leave it closed when you say you are going to or it's just a pathetic, meaningless half-measure that is NOT an impediment to whatever-the-hell the kid wants to do in any way, shape or form. Remember, you're either training the kid or the kid is training you. It sounds like the kid has both of you right where he wants you. It's his house and you just have to live in it and bring him food.

It's not going to be hell. You're not being mean. You're not going to crush his psyche and create a serial killer. It's your house and it's about time that you and your wife are able to be intimate after bedtime. Them's the rules, not the little boy's rules.

You know exactly what needs to be done and you know that YOUR WIFE IS GOING TO HAVE TO BE ON THE SAME PAGE. If the two of you can do it right, it will be over quickly.

Practice the following:

"No, honey; he has only been crying like that for forty-seven seconds. It hasn't been thirty minutes and even if it had, then we would still keep listening to him cry until he goes to sleep."

Also, if you do it right then you'll start to see something amazing happen with the kid. He'll start to have respect for you and he'll stop challenging you at every opportunity.
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Old 09-24-2014, 09:56 AM
 
6,461 posts, read 6,101,517 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blazerj View Post
Thanks. Maybe we can get an egg timer or something to indicate that 15 minutes has passed. My wife will like this approach better, but the sleep consultant that we used last year was completely against this method, but maybe we should try.
Why was the sleep consultant opposed to this?
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Old 09-24-2014, 10:21 AM
 
Location: The Netherlands
4,294 posts, read 2,882,400 times
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What I think your son being bit spoiled just like my daughter and mine also only child.My daughter used to come to my bed more often. She used to sleep alone in her cot , but since I bought her big bed as you mention, everything went up side down. The people who call sleeping consultant or what ever that position called, has told me I need to bring her back every single time when she comes to my bed. And let her to cry if she cry and don't mind it. I did everything what that excellent consultant told me. But the next day ,I am tired child was being exhausted and morning was terrible.
I stop everything I have had enough. As my ex husband was not with me there was no one impatiently waiting to have sex or anything.
I gave her a bath- brush her teeth- Put night gown on- then she comes to my bed - I read her a book- when she fall asleep after 30 min time I took her to her own bed. But before I bring her,I made the bed warm with warm water bottles. I drop on her bed. Baby phone on. I go down stairs reading a book or what ever I am in a mood to do.

Few months she start sleeping in her own bed. Because she waking up on her own bed so she wanted to go sleep in on her own bed. At some point kids will take distance on their own from you. So what I am saying enjoy the moments you have they grow up no time.
But if you love your child don't leave him to cry hours and hours. One child was dead in our block due to breathing problems so watch out if your child cries way too long.
What I think you should do follow your own instinct about this you are parents. Consultants or people can say many things but follow your own sens. What I see most of people say things like kids wont be independent, they wont like this and like that, let them cry let them learn. I think that is the most reason kids hate their parents when they grow up. I am not sure if you have seen how any young kids drop posters here" I hate my mother, I hate my father" many stories. I think those are the kids who were treated like that when they were babies. So follow your own heart beat regarding your own son. Good luck.
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Old 09-24-2014, 10:23 AM
 
Location: The Netherlands
4,294 posts, read 2,882,400 times
Reputation: 4257
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleonidas View Post
It sounds like the problem is that the little boy is more determined to sleep with his parents than his parents are to resume their sex life.

You should wait for the weekend when (I assume) you both can afford to have a late night or two or three and be ready to listen to a determined little boy who knows your limits but not his own enthusiastically mourning the death of his routine of sleeping in mommy and daddy's bed.

NOTE: I experienced an abject failure with installing a gate in my daughter's room in the past. If you put a gate in, you have to leave it closed when you say you are going to or it's just a pathetic, meaningless half-measure that is NOT an impediment to whatever-the-hell the kid wants to do in any way, shape or form. Remember, you're either training the kid or the kid is training you. It sounds like the kid has both of you right where he wants you. It's his house and you just have to live in it and bring him food.

It's not going to be hell. You're not being mean. You're not going to crush his psyche and create a serial killer. It's your house and it's about time that you and your wife are able to be intimate after bedtime. Them's the rules, not the little boy's rules.

You know exactly what needs to be done and you know that YOUR WIFE IS GOING TO HAVE TO BE ON THE SAME PAGE. If the two of you can do it right, it will be over quickly.

Practice the following:

"No, honey; he has only been crying like that for forty-seven seconds. It hasn't been thirty minutes and even if it had, then we would still keep listening to him cry until he goes to sleep."

Also, if you do it right then you'll start to see something amazing happen with the kid. He'll start to have respect for you and he'll stop challenging you at every opportunity.
Kids who go to sleep crying growing as haters when they get older.
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Old 09-24-2014, 10:31 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
39,074 posts, read 37,716,477 times
Reputation: 73729
You already know how to do it. You and your wife just need to stop caving. PERIOD.

The son doesnt need training. You do.
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Old 09-24-2014, 10:32 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
39,074 posts, read 37,716,477 times
Reputation: 73729
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeurch View Post
Kids who go to sleep crying growing as haters when they get older.
This is not true. AT ALL.
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Old 09-24-2014, 10:34 AM
 
13,496 posts, read 13,978,373 times
Reputation: 11120
"it's taking a toll on our marriage" who is the immature child here? if it's sex that is missing then get creative. you sound so rigid, kids as well as adults have trouble falling asleep. your child will grow out of this in time. this is just parenthood.

here is also nothing wrong with your wife wanting to fall asleep in your child's room when she wants to.
none of that should throw your kid's schedule off that much. you need routine as suggested by other posters. slow it way down several hours before bedtime. you also might want to try some fun sheets, a night light or musical box that has a shut off after a period of time. hang tight it will get better.
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