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Suddenly Can't Control My 2 Year Old @ Naptime Bedtime

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Old 03-03-2010, 10:43 AM   #1
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Suddenly Can't Control My 2 Year Old @ Naptime Bedtime

My son has always been awesome about going to bed and taking naps. We have had a solid routine since he was an infant and it has not changed. Suddenly, he is throwing WILD, uncontrollable tantrums at both nap time and bed time. I have tried changing them to either earlier or later with no improvement with his behavior.

As soon as we finish reading our last book he starts to scramble for more books. He freaks out when I tell him it is time to sleep. I keep with the routine and move him to his crib for a hug and kiss and to lay him down with his blankets and animals. At this point he is working himself up to SCREAM for whatever he can. More hugs, more kisses, clean his nose, clean his ears, read a book, give him juice, let him up, turn on the light, turn off the light etc etc etc... If I give in to one thing he wants more more more. If I don't give in he still screams for more more more. I tell him it is nap time and close the door and walk away. He tantrums for an hour to an hour and a half on average. I check in on him every 10 mins or so to make sure he is safe.

After a tantrum like this he can nap for 4+ hours or will sleep in the morning after. I think I would too! I'm sure he is using up a lot of energy.

Is this just a phase? Any tips or tricks for me to try? I'm at the end of my rope. I don't know what else to do at this point.
Attitude is the difference between an adventure and an ordeal.

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Old 03-03-2010, 03:49 PM   #2
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Re: Suddenly Can't Control My 2 Year Old @ Naptime Bedtime

Have you changed anything at all in his room? New pictures, anything? Sounds like he's frightened maybe? Do you put any music on for him? My son used to love his music when it was time to sleep and it also help to cover up any other noises. He did not however like the typical baby music - Funny but it had to be the Eagles! Don't know why but that's what he liked.

Old 03-03-2010, 05:06 PM   #3
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Re: Suddenly Can't Control My 2 Year Old @ Naptime Bedtime

Nothing has changed even a little bit. Lately he has been demanding that his ears and nose be cleaned when he is throwing these fits. I think its a stalling tactic based on the fact that he had a cold and an ear infection a little while ago so we made a fuss about keeping his ears and nose clean at the time.

Tonight before I put him down I made a big deal about how clean his ears and nose look. I couldn't even get him to lay down in his crib before he was pulling up his pant leg and saying he needed lotion on his skin. That was a new one (but no mention of his ears or nose in there)!! I told him no, that his skin was fine and physically laid him down and covered him up. It went right back to his demanding I read a certain book, give him juice, hug him, kiss him, etc etc etc...
My husband came in and whispered "shhh... lay down and go to sleep". My son was reluctant but he immediately did so.

For now, its a good solution but not one we can depend on. My husband travels for work A LOT so I'm the main caregiver and the one who handles bedtime. We are wracking our brains trying to figure out what to do. We are wondering if throwing him off his game and changing his bedtime routine might be the answer?
Attitude is the difference between an adventure and an ordeal.

Old 03-04-2010, 09:45 AM   #4
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Re: Suddenly Can't Control My 2 Year Old @ Naptime Bedtime

My 2 yr old DD is similar to your son. She will try to come up with anything and everything to avoid laying down for nap or bedtime. She asks for juice, milk, brush her teeth, read a book, sing, dance, etc. She doesn't go on for an hour however. Although, that could be around the corner for us. I usually check on her after about 5 minutes of crying. If she is standing, I tell her I want a hug (from her crib) and then make her lay back down and walk out. Sounds like you are doing the same thing. If my husband is at home, he can tell her to lay down and she's fine with it. But he's not always there, as yours isn't. I don't have any advice, just wanted you to know we are in the same boat. Please be sure to let us know what you decide to do and what works. I may need that advice if her crying begins to last longer. Good luck!

Old 03-07-2010, 10:34 AM   #5
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Re: Suddenly Can't Control My 2 Year Old @ Naptime Bedtime

We took a chance and converted his crib to a toddler bed yesterday. All morning he kept sneaking into our bedroom and climbing under the covers and yelling "night night". Based on this we thought he might be ready for the change.

I took him shopping for a new bed rail, pillow and bedding set yesterday morning. The bedding has robots on it which he loves because he's really into robots right now.

He watched/"helped" me change his bed and put the new bedding on it. I made sure it was all done in time for his nap. I didn't want to introduce a big change at bedtime since this is his most challenging time of the day.

He did good at nap time which was encouraging but I knew we weren't out of the woods until I got him down without a fight a bedtime.

At bedtime he tried some stalling tactics and did launch into a tantrum. I left him for a few minutes and went back into his room. He needed to be reassured that he still had certain blankets and stuffed animals with him. Once we took inventory he was fine. He talked and played for a while before going to sleep. He was fine this morning and waited until I got him out of bed. He also went down easily at nap time today. I think the "big boy bed" was the change he needed.
Attitude is the difference between an adventure and an ordeal.

Old 04-29-2010, 04:45 AM   #6
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Re: Suddenly Can't Control My 2 Year Old @ Naptime Bedtime

This is great news! It is a disaster if you cannot, for some reason sort out the problem. My baby is 15 months, we do not have problems yet, but I will definitely make a huge mental note of your solution. All he needed was just a change from baby to a really big boy. Congrats! you have concurred a very difficult situation.

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