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Charlie's Soap

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Wednesday, February 7
Busy Boy sleep problems

Busy Boy actually went to sleep on his own, around 9pm last night.

Thanks for all your support, it seems to be a common problem. We've never experienced it with Busy Girl, mainly because she's been awake since September, 1994.

I have no idea what's behind his troubles, if anything specific. I think night before last was aggravated by an errant glass of chocolate milk before bed.

He's also really got issues being alone at night. I thought they were getting better, but, it doesn't look like it. We unbunked his beds because he felt enclosed, and, that helped for a while.

He sleeps better in The Preschooler Formerly Known as Busy Baby's room, but, that's just a single bed, and, The Preschooler Formerly Known as Busy Baby usually ends up paying us an angry visit in the middle of the night, if we forget to move Busy Boy ("Will you pwease MOVE him?").

This may be one of those things I don't understand because I'm an only child, I never had the chance to sleep with anyone else in the room, but, I find myself getting a bit impatient with the whole thing.

I know I shouldn't, but, we'll both keep working at it. However, it's making the question of him going to camp this summer come up again.

For several reasons, we were ready to "just do it" (no, not against his will), but, this flare up is making it a question again.

The reasons for sending him to camp are probably more than I can adequately explain here, but, among them are the need to learn some self-reliance and personal responsibility. Busy Girl is always around to do things for him, and, if we hope to have him ever move out of the house as an adult, it's time for him to start doing a few things of his own accord.

No, seriously, we're NOT planning on sending him to camp if he doesn't want to go. He does want to go, but, he has some doubts, and, this sleep thing just makes things a bigger question.

non-sequitur non-sequitur non-sequitur non-sequitur

- I have a Career and Kids post nominated for the "Hot Stuff" award at GNM Parents, won't you go vote if you are so inclined?

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8:41 AM | Comments (14) |


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I feel for you, as we are going through something similar with Josh (5). We had an incident a few weeks ago (I posted about it..titled..land ho, matey) and he has been full of fear every single day since... He was already a conscience of his surroundings boy anyway, but now it is teetering on the phobia fence. We keep encouraging him with our faith and have given him a scripture verse to say when he is fearful. Also, the police have been around since that incident and I told him that I called them to watch our house for bad guys until he could get over his fear. (That has worked well) He had suggested that we invite the police in to inspect our house to make sure it is safe?

I was a scared child and still have home alone at night issues...shhh.

Thank goodness Busy Boy got some sleep!!!

You know... camp sounds like a good thing. Bet he'd love it!!!

Good for the middle kid to strike out on his own!

That's my thoughts... as a mom of two boys ages 9 & almost 13 (yikes!)

Zaphod has ALWAYS had sleep issues. If he had his way he'd always sleep with his sister, but they're getting to an age where 1) she doesn't want him to, and 2) we don't want him to either. His closet door MUST be closed, his night light MUST be on, his drapes must be closed.

Add to that the firstborn compulsive behavior (things on nightstand must be arranged just so, stuffed animals have to be in a certain position on the bed), and you have a very demanding bedtime ritual.

Bottom line, he's afraid of the dark, but he's too 'cool' to admit it. That's OK, I was that way too.

If Busy Boy wants to go to camp (but is apprehensive), by all means send him. After the first night, he'll be having a blast. I have some great memories that I won't tell you about because you're a mom and you probably wouldn't want him involved in such things, but trust me, he'll love it.

Sounds like he doesn't want to be alone at night. Going to camp means never having the cabin to yourself so his fear of sleeping alone will go away. Maybe you need to have him sleep with a radio on, if sleeping in the other room isn't working. Good luck.

Posted by: LeeAnn | February 7, 2007 11:57 AM

As a recent camp counselor, I can say that it does wonders for shy & scared kids. Being a riflery instructor (just BB guns) I worked with a lot of little boys, ages 6 to 9. They seem to enjoy the constant companionship, and help each other over fears. And if their buddies aren't enough, there's always a super-cool counselor available to help out & comfort. Out of the hundreds of kids I worked with, only once did somebody go home for homesickness, and she gave it her hardest try for 3 days, and was determined to come back the next summer and finish the wholeweek.

Posted by: mbbored | February 7, 2007 1:46 PM

Boy can I relate! Unfortunately my daughter has had sleep issues for years. It seems it's part of who they are from birth, I hope things start looking up for you...we all need our sleep!!

I have always had sleep issues, and do not like sleeping alone. He may be the same way, just likes the security of company? I hope it gets better!
I agree that if he has to share the cabin at camp, he certainly won't feel any isolation...

My little guy (just turned 4) has a nightly ritual. He'll fall asleep in his bed upstairs. But sometime in the middle of the night, he wakes and walks downstairs and crashes on the family room couch. He used to try to come into our bedroom, which is right next to the family room, but the Hubs and I couldn't sleep with the kid in bed with us. So the Hubs told him that he should sleep on the couch if he woke in the night. So now it's a regular thing. I hope you are able to find a solution that'll help your little guy and YOU get more sleep.

Posted by: grace | February 7, 2007 6:13 PM

Our daughter's going through a lot of the same sleep issues. However, she's happily gone to summer camp for years, where she sleeps better because she's in a cabin with a bunch of other girls. Good luck, and let me know if you come up with a solution for home.

Oh no, here I was reading about your sleeping issues when Snofie, 8, came out into the living room and said she couldn't sleep. I totally understan the losing your patience thing... good luck.

BM, I'm running quite the parallel with you on this...

My older son, 7, has been through some pretty significant events that have affected his sleep. When we moved, we were basically homeless for three months, staying with family and friends, a few days at a time. The boy never had any sense of "home" during that time (big hang up with the old house getting sold, blah, blah, blah). Couple this with a life of mommy rushing to his room at every peep and murmur (because I did - he was the first born!) and the poor kid started his stint in our current home with some major sleep issues. In fact, up until this past Christmas, he was religiously in our room around 2-3 a.m., begging one of us to take him back to his room - it was a nightmare for us.

However, at Christmas, we did something that has really helped with his sleeping (although that wasn't our intent)...he now shares a room with his younger brother. There is a 5 year difference in their ages, and the little guy is still in the crib, so we have the 7 year old's bunk bed and the crib both set up in one bedroom, and the other bedroom is now their playroom/computer area/etc. In that time, the 7 year old has been out of bed ZERO times.

Sometimes it is just having the feeling of someone else being there that gives them comfort, I think. That seems to be the case with our older son at least.

As for camp, if your son is one that simply can't sleep in a room by himself, he'll love camp. Send him if he wants to go - he'll probably have the best sleep of his life!

oh my gawd, it doesn't get better? The sleep thing, that is. My son is 19 months old and is the. worst. sleeper. in. the. word.

good luck with busy boy. i think camp would be great for him and so refreshing for you!!

Tony has a hard time going to sleep if Angelo isn't in there with him. For a while every night in the middle of the night or early in the morning after Angelo would come back to our room, Tony would come in complaining of a bad dream or wondering where Angelo went.

My son is 10 and it took forever for him to sleep alone. He used to camp out beside our bed when we wouldn't let him sleep with us anymore. It wasn't until his brother was old enough to sleep with him that he stopped.

They're cute - like puppies, but it is aggrevating. And with 3 kids, I always seem to have one in the bed. I now see why some households just have a big ole communal bed - at least they can all get some sleep!