Why does my son suddenly hate bedtime and will not sleep through the night?
January 5, 2013 6:47 PM Subscribe
My son (12 months) has been sleeping through the night since he was 3 months old, but now...he hates bedtime (but naps are fine) and wakes up screaming and wanting to play (usually around 1 or 2 am). What's going on?
posted by The Hyacinth Girl to health & fitness (17 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I have read the other questions on baby sleep and found some good advice there, but none of it is working just yet, so I hope I can raise the issue again. Here's the situation:
My son has been a prodigy when it comes to sleeping through the night. He started sleeping 10 - 12 hrs/night since the third month. We could literally count the number of times he woke up in the middle of the night on one hand until about a month ago. To say he is an excellent sleeper is an understatement. But in the past few weeks, this has changed.
This has varied a bit, but he is essentially on the following schedule:
Wake up around 8 - 8:30am. Two naps a day (~11am and 4 or 5pm). Asleep by 7:30 or 8pm.
But now at the 12 month stage, we have run into two problems:
1) He goes down for his naps quite easily and is asleep within a minute or so. We have never let him "cry it out" before, but we found this week that it is necessary sometimes -- he howls for a bit, then lays down and falls asleep peacefully. But bedtime is a different story -- we've had some success letting him cry for a minute or two, but there are nights when he just keeps crying to the point of coughing/choking and we rush in to pick him up. I walk him around in my arms to soothe him and try to put him down -- this usually requires a few attempts.
I've tried to be consistent with his bedtime routine and he is perfectly happy up until I put him in his crib (or even get near it; he knows what's up).
2) Once he is asleep (around 8 or 9pm), he tends to wake up very upset between 12 - 1:30 am. It's quite consistent. Again, we've had some limited success in letting him cry and stand up for a minute. He will sometimes just go down to sleep again. But more often than not, he will scream until I get up. At this point he is wide awake and will not go to sleep until 3 or 4am. He's quite happy to play and laugh and snack a bit with Daddy, but God forbid I try to put him back to bed.
I almost feel like I shouldn't complain -- we are truly blessed with an "easy" child in this department. I hear horror stories about parents who haven't slept in years, whereas we have enjoyed a full night's rest since March. But something has changed for him when it comes to sleeping.
Any tips on what's going wrong here?