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how to get 2.5 year old to stay in bed Lock Rss

We have a 2.5 year old girl who was always a good sleeper until about 6 months ago (1 month before her sister was born). We have managed to get her day sleep back to normal and to get her to sleep through the night again most nights, but we still have regular battles getting her to stay in bed and go to sleep each evening.
We have a routine of nappy change, teeth, 2-3 stories, quick cuddle and then bed. Some nights she will stay there and go to sleep (it can often take her up to an hour to actually fall asleep). Other nights she will keep coming out, and we repeatedly put her back. Sometimes she will be almost following us out, other times she comes out every 15 to 20 minutes for the next few hours.
We have tried shutting the door, but as soon as we open it again she will come back out (crying and screaming while the door is shut, but laughing when it is reopened - one night she fell asleep behind it so we couldn't reopen it). We have also tried taking away her bedtime toy and putting it on a shelf - after a few nights she would put it on a shelf before she came back out.
We have also tried rewards - she gets stickers in the morning if she stays in bed - this will be successful for a few days on and off - after about 4 - 5 days of no stickers she decides she wants some again, so will stay in bed for a few nights.
Each time we think that we are getting somewhere, whatever method we were using seems to no longer work.
We have been to a sleep school with her a couple of months ago where we used the door shutting routine - but by the final night they agreed that she was turning it into a game and suggested the toy removal - now also a game.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

mum to 2 girls

It sounds like your daughter might be seeking some of the attention lost by the new arrival.

Try to give her as much of her own special time as possible, make a magazine cut out picture page with her, of a tired, sad mum and one of a happy mum and a sleeping child and of a crying child and let her know how much happier you would be if she helped you by going to bed at night, sounds silly but Rhonda says it works miracles! You can’t do much else but keep putting her back to bed each time, do it with the least amount of fuss, any attention is good in her eyes and yes she has turned all your efforts into a game.

Best of luck, Maree

It's Time to Sleep

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