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5 year old waking at night Lock Rss

Hi, not sure anyone has any suggestions, but my 5 year old for the last month has been waking up sometime during the night and just being really difficult to get back to sleep. He say's he just wants cuddles, or wants to go to my bed, or wants me to sleep in his bed. I try be calm and reassuring and just talk softly about having to go back to sleep (which used to work) but now he just won't go back to sleep, if I walk away he follows, I offer to leave the kitchen light on, put his radio on, put a nightlight on, none of it works, then I threaten to shut the door, and turn all the lights off and explain how I need to go back to sleep as I have to go to work and I can't be tired at work (which I have been for years) as I have not had a decent sleep in over 5 years.. but anyway.. then I end up getting angry and yelling and slamming doors and he ends up yelling saying I'm mean, he say's he is lonely and just wants cuddles. He has a trundle bed so I've had to start sleeping on that as this can go on for an hour and I reallllly need to go back to sleep. Then as soon as I'm on his trundle bed, he's in his bed and he goes back to sleep within seconds of knowing I'm there. I don't know what to do to get him to go back to sleep, and its making me really cross with him. Last night my husband dragged the trundle bed into our room in the middle of the night so our son just went to sleep on that, and sure enough in a minute or so he's back to sleep and I'm all wound up as I've been yelling at him for ages to go back to sleep, so then I can't go back to sleep. It kind of feels like I'm giving in to him by either sleepign on the trundle, or letting him sleep on the trundle in our room, but I guess for a good night sleep does it matter? Guess it can't last forever.
I hate to break it to you - but he's 5, he's old enough to know what's what. If I were in your situation I would tell him BEFORE he went to sleep the first time that mum wont be getting up tonight, and if he wakes up he needs to go back to sleep. Don't get out of bed, don't speak to him, don't even open your eyes.

If it got bad enough that he was standing by my bed or trying to get in I would get a lock for my bedroom.

He is FAR to old to be doing this - it's purely behavioural and attention seeking which is not acceptable during the night.

Trying different things and then getting frustated and yelling is not going to work - you need to tell him the SAME thing every night before bed, and then follow through. Don't ever ever give in to it again, and eventually he'll get the picture.

And prehaps let him know that when he sleeps all night five times in a row like all big boys do he might get a surprise. (and if he does do it - make sure the surprise is only ONCE.... you don't want him to think he deserves a surprise every morning when he has slept through!!!)




Yes it is purely behavioural and seeking attention, I have tried the whole not talking to him and returning him to his room without talking over and over, and he just looses the plot, and yells at me to talk to him, and in trying to be considerate to my DH and my daughter to avoid them having to be woken up I probably have given in to him more times than I should which is not improving the situation. I will sit him down before bed like you suggested and tell him I won't be getting up. Its so hard in the middle of the night when you know you have to get up and go to work its easy to be weak and give in just to get back to sleep, and just pray that the next night is the one he sleeps through.
DS started waking every night, sometimes many times a night, and coming into our bed to be close to me.
He was 3 and a bit and I had just started working, rather than being a SAH/Uni mum, so he was feeling unsettled and clingy.

After months and months of him coming into my bed every night, me putting him back in his when he was asleep, and then him more than likely coming back in, I had enough.

I had yelled, I had growled, I had threatened, his door got locked, he got hysterical, the whole 9 yards!

Finally went into a chemist basically wanting some sleeping pills for him!
Of course they couldn't really help with that a lot, but the guy showed me a couple of natural products that we could use.
Went home with a bottle of Brauer's Children's Sleep.
Used it religiously with the directions on the bottle.
It took about 3 nights, but after that we had success!!!!!
A whole night in his own bed, with no wake-ups! smile

So I basically gave him that every night for about 3 weeks... to try to break the habit he had got into of waking every night.
After that I didn't have to use it for a little while.
But even so, every now and then he goes thru it again so I just go back to a chemist, get some more Sleep stuff and away we go smile

So I would DEFINITELY recommend this stuff smile

Brauer also have some Sleep & Insomnia tablets.. You get 80 tablets and they're about $17.
Children from 2yrs can take them - you just dissolve a tab under their tongue half an hour before bed, then give another immediately before bed too.
You can also use them through the night if he does wake.

Give it a try!


I actually did get some tissue salts for insomnia which kids can take, got him started on them today. I'll look into the brauer tablets too if the ones I got don't seem to do anything. I did use that brauer sleep when my daughter was a baby, might grab another bottle, there hasn't been any changes in our life, but he just seems to have gotten extra clingy, and sooky, he literally just turned 5 last week, and knows that school is not far away, he's gotten bored with kindy, I'll see if he can tell me more about whats on his mind, but he just saying he's lonley, and wants to be near me, but when I read a book about feelings and the lonely feelings, he says he doesn't feel that way, not sure if he wakes up hot, cold, or from nightmares, or just out of habit now. Sometimes it seems when he's had a busier day like on weekends he sleeps better, than during the week when he's not as busy, or when he's done more physical exercise like riding his bike alot that day he seems to sleep better. Thanks for all your tips and suggestions, hopefully we find something that works. Really wore him out today.. so fingers crossed he sleeps all night.
I think you've already recognized the solution here but don't want to feel that you're "giving in" to him. If he just wants to be with you and sleeping next to your bed gets everyone a good nights sleep with minimal disruption, I'd just go with it. It's got to beat being awake for over an hour and fighting with him??? He is only 5 and I don't think there is necessarily anything up with a 5yo feeling lonely or wanting to be close to a parent during the night, it won't last forever smile
Hi,
If this is a recent thing and unusual behavior for him, maybe he is dealing with some anxiety about something. Whether that be school, a change in routine, not seeing you as much, or maybe he is just going through a stage where he needs reassurance. I would have some talks to him about why he wants so many cuddles at night. You could also set aside an extra 15 minutes before your usual bedtime routine to just sit on the bed together and have lots of cuddles.

Sometimes in these situations the more you ignore what the underlying issue is (which could be as simple as him wanting more cuddles with mum) the worse it can become!

Good luck smile
i agree with ruby gloom and 3 little men.

he is only 5, he is still a child. to me being lonely is a good enough reason to want to get up and be with his mummy. my son does this too and i just cuddle with him for 5 mins and i tell him that i will cuddle for 5 mins then he goes back to bed.

maybe spend some time talking to him about WHY he is wakes, try to get to the bottom of it to help him feel more comfortable.

Chalys i think what you are suggesting is so harsh. you say he is 5 he should know better. at 5 he is still a child and i know sometimes i wake at night feeling anxious, sad or confused (because of a dream) and it would upset me if, say, my husband refused to talk to me or acknowledge me or yelled at me to go back to sleep, imagine how a 5 year old would feel. and too suggest getting a lock for your bedroom and locking him out gasp i think doing that would make the problem worse.

good luck with it and i hope you can find a solution.

The day i broke up with normal was the first day of my magical life...

Thanks, it really doesn't matter if he wants cuddles in the middle of the night, my husband say's I'm lucky that they want cuddles with me as they are both mummies kids, and he doesn't get as many cuddles and to just go with whatever works in our household.

My theory about him sleeping well after more physical exercise seems true as last night he slept all night long, after lots of bike riding and running around during the day.

Seeing as he wants more cuddles during the day too than normal, as well as night, I'll just give them to him, cuddles are one of the best things about being a mum.

I think I have too just continue to give in (as I put it) and just sleep on his trundle as soon as he wakes, that way he'll be back to sleep in 5 mins as will I, which is better than an hour of being awake and with no arguments or tears. He just needs that reassurance that I'm there, and that's what I'll give him. Hopefully its a short stage as the trundle isn't really that comfy for a grown up's body weight.

I've appreciated everyone's suggestions and helpful advice.

Thanks, it really doesn't matter if he wants cuddles in the middle of the night, my husband say's I'm lucky that they want cuddles with me as they are both mummies kids, and he doesn't get as many cuddles and to just go with whatever works in our household.

My theory about him sleeping well after more physical exercise seems true as last night he slept all night long, after lots of bike riding and running around during the day.

Seeing as he wants more cuddles during the day too than normal, as well as night, I'll just give them to him, cuddles are one of the best things about being a mum.

I think I have too just continue to give in (as I put it) and just sleep on his trundle as soon as he wakes, that way he'll be back to sleep in 5 mins as will I, which is better than an hour of being awake and with no arguments or tears. He just needs that reassurance that I'm there, and that's what I'll give him. Hopefully its a short stage as the trundle isn't really that comfy for a grown up's body weight.

I've appreciated everyone's suggestions and helpful advice.


i think you have the right attitude and good luck i hope it gets sorted for both your sakes smile

The day i broke up with normal was the first day of my magical life...

I am a bit surprised at these answers!!! Maybe I'm a horrible cow of a mother!!! laugh

I had so much trouble with dd as a baby waking every 30 minutes (for 13 months blink ) that sleep time is VERY important in our house. Under no circumstance would dd be allowed to get up in the night now (she is 4 1/2) - I would expect her to understand when I say go back to sleep and there is no way I would accept anything else!

Thankfully she is a great sleeper now. I'll bet you'll all pity her if she ever does this!!! lol




When she is sick I get up to her, and on the very odd occasion I have heard her tearing down the hallway after a bad dream. On those occasions I have gotten up to her, cuddled her and put her back to bed with some reassurance. I don't stay until she's asleep though, she goes to sleep on her own.

It's been probably nearly a year since anything has happened to wake her up though.

It's a whole different kettle of fish if its happening night after night with a child saying they just want cuddles..... that's not sick or petrified of whatever was coming after the in their dreams! I put that in the same category as when my baby was waking up constantly just wanting me...... and controlled crying is what we did after 13 months of sheer hell. It's not nice to have to do that but it works. I would imagine if my 4yo did this now I would be doing a version of controlled crying that's suited to an older child.




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