My 4 yr.old daughter wakes up every night with something wrong. Our other children are great sleepers & we've always been strict about staying in your own bed & sleeping through the night. My 11 mos.old sleeps all night, why won't my 4 yr.old? The reason changes every night. She's either scared, had a bad dream, she's thirsty, she just wants me & if those don't fly she pulls out the "my legs hurt" & sometimes I swear she wets the bed on purpose. I've been sympathetic with the bed wetting for a few years now, because I used to wet the bed myself as a child, but now I'm starting to feel like she's doing it for attention. The legs hurting is getting really old too. I've been rubbing her legs & giving her Tylenol @ night now forever, but now I feel like she's just saying they hurt for attention when her other attemps fail. I feel so bad not beleiving her. I don't want to keep giving in or inabeling this wakeing behavior, but it has to stop. We have tried charts, rewards with small toys, rewards w/ playdates or special mommy/daddy time, reward tickets that she can earn for extra back scratches or extra bedtime books & of course we have even resorted to punishing when the positive reinforcement won't work, by losing tickets, taking away playdates or toys & so on. I want to be more positive, but I've run out of patience. Is she lying for attention? How do I know? How can I get her to stop NEEDING this negative attention so much? No matter how much I focus on giving her what she needs emotionally it's never good enough. She's been very HARD for me. Help.
A loving, frustrated, tired Mom
Hi Sjowilliams, Relax! How is your daughter doing? I do understand how hard it might be for you to carry on your daily routines and to cope up with the stress in taking care of your 11 months child and daughter. It is very true that you are getting frustrated because of your daughter sleeplessness that’s affecting you too and this is very common with most of mothers around world. You need to be more generous and caring towards her as she cannot go to any one else to say her problems and she very well understands how much you love and care her. At her age she might be afraid of sleeping alone or away from you, also she might feel that the extra care and love she needs is not met as you need to take care of younger child who needs you more. She might not be doing purposefully. Your rewarding for good is great but not punishing for wrongdoing, children's need to be appreciated for their acts as they are still in learning stage. She cannot go to anyone else except to you for sharing her concerns. Do have some more patience and care for her, keep her with you if she cannot sleep in her room. Bed-wetting takes time to stop its own way. Try to give her a early dinner and follow a routine time to put her to sleep with some soft music or a toy to cuddle with. Warm bath at bedtime can be soothing. Please do not be harsh as it does harm and nothing good. Observe for some more time or else see a Pediatrician. Please do share your thoughts and take care.
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