Monday, July 12, 2010

I'm beginning to think Jo Frost, the SuperNanny, had one too many Guinness down at the pub

So. Bedtime? Is not going well.

Twenty-two times putting Wes back in the bed now seems like a quaint little memory. The two nights he went down with no fuss at all were a total fluke. The nap he took today when our babysitter was here? MIND GAMES.

We've chosen the SuperNanny plan for sleep training. The plan is that you wordlessly and with as little fuss as possible, put the kid back in bed, as many times as it takes, until he gives up and goes to sleep. On the show they usually put the kid back like a hundred and fifty times the first night, forty-six times the second night, and then on the third night the kid stands up from the couch, clicks off the Daily Show, says goodnight to the family, then walks up to his room, brushes his teeth, puts on his pajamas, and climbs quietly into bed. SupperNanny wins again! Roll the credits.

It is is Day 6 and we are not having the same experience. Tonight, while I was enjoying a delicious Italian dinner with the other church ladies, picturing the sweet, sleeping babies I was going to kiss goodnight when I got home, Ryan was engaged in The Battle of the Bed, 6.0. It ended with Charlie in our bed, Ryan meeting me in the driveway looking like he had just run a marathon, a marathon where people yell at you while you are running, and Wes having a panic attack in his bed (after I took over so Ryan could regroup). Horrible choking sobs. It was miserable. I wrapped him up in a blanket and held him tightly to my chest. He was asleep in less than a minute.

I think we missed "the window" tonight. That narrow sliver of time in which a child is sleepy enough to sleep but not so sleepy that the adrenaline has kicked in and turned him into a jittery psychopath capable of resisting even the most reasonable request. Like "GET IN YOUR BED AND STAY THERE! A NEW NETFLIX CAME TODAY!!"

SuperNanny has clearly never encountered a kid as strong-willed as Wes. I fully expect him to move a salt shaker across the table one day using only the power of his mind. And then I will probably absentmindedly sprinkle some in my coffee because children who don't get enough rest are REALLY FREAKING CRABBY. And I'm starting to lose it a little.

9 comments: said...
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sarah said...

oh, I'm sorry (but the marathon where people yell at you line made me laugh out loud).

Bedtime just sucks! Ethan never naps, so we hit that adrenaline rush almost every single night. But the only alternative is putting him to bed at 5pm when he seems ready for bed. Ugh.

I love the fantasy world in which the kid gets up off the couch, turns off the TV & goes to bed. Ahhhh, Utopia.

Dr. Maureen said...

And here I've been including you on the list of people of whom I'm envious because THEIR kids go to bed easily and sleep ALL NIGHT. I hereby commiserate with you, my friend. We have the same problem, executed differently because Nora can't get out of the crib yet.

Sarah said...

marathon where people yell at you-- HA!

damn it. ryan's unflappability at bedtime made me think ditching Jack's crib was a good idea.

we should start bedtime skyping with o'douls for you and the real stuff for the rest of us, you know, to share the misery.

LL said...

I think maybe the "MIND GAMES." part may be my favorite, but the whole post made me laugh (and feel loads of sympathy for you and Ryan as well, of course). I hope tonight goes better!

Kristen said...

Oh no! That is horrible. I've never had one of those. Could you put a baby gate in front of his door? Would he climb over it? The only time we've had a problem with Dylan he held the doorknob on the outside for 10 minutes one night and a few less the next night and he was cured. Maybe you would have to do it more, but eventually, he might climb in bed or fall asleep on the floor...
You know me and my tough love, so if it isn't for you, ignore. =)

Kyla said...

Oh no! Is there no easier way? Sounds terrible for all of you.

I'm probably a bad person to give assvice, because when KayTar was littler...she would vomit when she got upset at bedtime, so we would do whatever she wanted to keep that from happening most of the time. She fell asleep many nights in the Baby Papasan in front of the TV. In fact, that is still how she goes to sleep when she's sick and congested. However, most of the time she is a 100% fully functioning, routine bedtime kid these days (7:30pm during the school year). Reading time, a kiss, and lights out. So we couldn't have messed it up too bad, though SuperNanny might not agree!

Maybe he's not ready for it yet? I don't know, but it definitely sounds sucky for you guys. Especially you, who cannot drink currently. ;)

Leslie said...

yikes! So you're telling me that a swaddle and a pacifier won't always work??

Amy said...

Oh my God, I remember this stage with Jack but he was 3 and I about last my mind. The only sanity-saving measure was a lock on the outside of his door.

Worked like a charm. Within three nights, he would only get up to test and see if it was really locked, then he got back in bed and went to sleep. After a few months, we didn't need to lock it anymore.

It came in very handy today, however, when he refused to stay in his room during a punishment and I kept having to go put him back in.