Lyla has been seriously fighting bed and nap times like she is fighting for her life.
I have no idea what happened. She used to be so good at going to bed. She is an awesome sleeper (and still is once she actually falls asleep). But for the past 4 weeks or so, Monster Lyla, comes alive any time she heads to bed or for a nap. She usually fights putting on pajama's because she knows that pj's mean bedtime, but I think this part is actually getting better. But once she is upstairs, all hell breaks loose. It typically goes something like this:
Lyla: No, I don't want to go to bed. I don't want to go to bed please. (Fake crying begins) Please, can I not go to bed?
Us: Sorry babe, it's bedtime and your body needs rest.
Lyla: (Panic arises as she wraps her arms around our neck, not wanting to let go) No please, I don't want to go to bed, please!
Us: I know sweetie. I'm sorry but it's just that time.
It kind of goes back and forth from there.
We set her down and quickly walk out so we can lock the door before she comes at it kicking and screaming.
This is a big problem. Besides the obvious that it is exhausting, frustring, etc., it is also a problem because she shares a room with Ruby. Sometimes Ruby will just eventually tune her out and fall asleep on her own. But it keeps Ruby up for longer than we would like, and she has to witness her sister turn into a crazy, thrashing toddler. For example: As I am typing all this, Lyla is upstairs screaming and crying to get out of her room and is KICKING the door really hard and then yelling "Ouch, my foot hurts!!!!". Well of course it does sweetie, you are forcefully pushing it into a wooden door. Duh! Regardless... This. Needs. To. Stop.
Things to consider:
- We follow a bedtime routine. Dinner, bath, pajama's, brush teeth, family scriptures, family prayer, books. Occasionally if Lyla does a good job not complaining about getting her pj's on, we will let her play for X amount of time as a reward(usually 5-10 minutes).
- She behaves this way regardless of whether or not she has taken a nap.
- She sleeps around 11-12 hours a night.
- We have tried the reward system (ie: if you do such a good job going to bed tonight, you will get ____ tomorrow.
- We have tried explaining why she needs sleep.
- We have explained that bed time and nap times are not consequences.
- We usually go up a couple of times during her 30 minute tantrums and try to calm her down. 75% of the time she does better and is quiet in bed and eventually falls asleep.
- Tonight we decided to try and not to say anything to her at all during her tantrum.
- We've tried consequences if she fusses.
- We have tried holding her, singing to her, rubbing her back for a little bit while she lays in bed but as soon as we leave, the tantrum starts back up.
Basically, I feel like we have tried everything. Am I missing something? Have we done something wrong? Please feel free to be brutally honest. I really am hoping this is just a phase but a month long phase makes me feel like we need to change something, do something more effective, and just find some way to stop this behavior so Nate and I have a peaceful evening rather than one filled of headaches and exhaustion.
If you're still reading this, do you have any advice? Anything? I'm feeling a little desperate here :)